Cliff and I had the usual yearly discussion and decided we will not be sending Christmas cards or giving Christmas gifts this year. We're getting ready for retirement, and now is as good a time as any to get realistic. We've agreed it's just too hard to figure out what to give grandchildren once they get past four years old, unless you give them money; and in order for the money to do them any good, it would need to be a substantial amount.
We're not trying to be Scrooges or Grinches here, we're just doing what seems sensible to us.
We might, in the future, do a name-drawing gift exchange if the family wants to do it; that would be affordable for all, even with a $50 or so limit.
As for the Christmas cards, I do love getting them, especially the ones with letters and notes enclosed. However, with the price of stamps, it turns into a fairly expensive proposition.
When we had this discussion, Cliff said, "So you're not getting anything for me and I'm not getting anything for you, right?"
"Of course not," I answered. "I already got my gift: the Nook."
For those who watched the last episode of Mike and Molly, Cliff is exactly like Mike when it comes to gifting. He wants to get something great, but never knows what to get; any hints go right over his head. I'm fine with us getting ourselves what we want. We don't do gifts on birthdays or Valentine's Day either, although I use those occasions as an excuse to eat out. So, we're not the last of the great romantics.
I guess in this way we're a perfect match. It's worked out for forty-four years, so far.
I did send something to City Union Mission; their donations are down, due to the economy. That's the one-and-only Christmas gift Cliff and I are giving this year, and I hope to continue that, even if it's a lesser amount after he retires; every little bit helps. Cliff always slips something into the Salvation Army kettles.
You can check out many charities with Charity Navigator, although many religious organizations aren't listed there, due to the fact that they are exempt under the Internal Revenue Code from filing Form 990. I don't like this, but that's how it is; I believe every charity should be accountable. Salvation Army is not listed on Charity Navigator; City Union Mission is. That's how I made my choice on which one to gift.
Merry Christmas to all; may you make memories that will last throughout your lives. I certainly enjoy my Christmas memories.