Tuesday, 23 December 2008

Tis the season to be jolly fa-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la

Grab a cuppa and prepare to read a ramble!!!

I'm trying to take my mind off watching the clock, as we wait for whaiāipo to finish work. So what better way to while away the time than have a chat to y'all ...

The children and I are a little bit in limbo this afternoon. I have a lot of things I want to get on with, eg baking more cookies and prepping for our Christmas dinner but we're waiting for whaiāipo to return home from work.

Q: Why don't I just venture to the supermarket on my own?

A: Because whaiāipo holds the purse today. He's (hopefully) buying the necessary connections for the pump for our swimming pool so he had to take the money cards.

Not only that but I have to make a very big decision. Will our Christmas dinner be a roast, BBQ or hangi? ... Decisions, decisions ....

Nothing like leaving things to the 11th hour! lol

At least we've completed our Christmas gift-shopping!

Once there's some presents under the tree,
it really feels like Christmas is-a-cumin' doesn't it?

Have you completed your gift-shopping?

I don't know if you're anything like me, but when it comes to finding Christmas gifts (because I can't claim to be like this all the time, lol) I will do a day's reccy before I make my final purchase. At this time of the year the compulsion to buy can quite often create blinders on people and suddenly they buy everything they see before them and as much as I try to avoid the commercialism of Christmas, to remain focussed on the true picture of what the events of Advent, Christmas etc means, I am quite sure I could quite easily be swept up in the same wave of buy, buy, buy if I allowed myself.

My reccy has now become something of a tradition in itself. It may have sprung from the fact that for many years we were on the bones of our backsides, so finding gifts that were cheap yet looked like we'd spent hundreds of dollars was absolutely crucial. (Okay, so hundreds of dollars is a gross exaggeration! But saying hundreds of dollars sounds better than saying tens of dollars which was the budget in those days!!) Whatever the reason, I'm just glad I still practice it because at this time of year when you try to be cautious and not overspend, too many temptations are bombarding you at the entrance of each store. So before you even make it inside they're coaxing you to grab unnecessary, unplanned gifts. By doing my reccy, I can have a good look around without fear of impulse buying. Because I'm not armed with cash, credit cards or EFTPOS cards, I manage to stay focussed, head directly to the aisle I want to locate certain goods, check the price, write it down in my little notebook, make mental notes of anything that has stood out and then head to the next store.

Luckily we don't have huge malls in Rotorua. I'm sure temptations would be harder again in the likes of big, bright, well-stocked malls. We stick to the Warehouse (aka the Ware Whare), the $2 shop and second-hand stores - especially Save-Mart, the Salvation Army, the Red Cross and the Urban Ore (our Recycling Cente store).

Yes, if there's one place I enjoy going into, it's Urban Ore. I feel good taking my plastics, paper etc to the recycling centre and then popping into Urban Ore because you just never know what you'll find.

Last week for example we scored a little bicycle for only $4.00. Other than a puncture to the back tyre it looks good eh? -->

Two years ago (or has it been three years now? hmm, I can't remember!) we paid $3.00 for this kiddy bike which is still going strong two kids later. About a month ago we put the trainers on for two year old tamāhine 2 and she loves it.

This year whaiāipo and I upped our budget - not by a huge amount, but we increased it so we could buy food for our Christmas dinner. This is the first year we won't be relying on our parents to feed us and it feels like we've won Lotto. To clarify what I mean by that statement, we are excited to think we can afford to spend x-amount of dollars on our family's Christmas dinner. I was not wishing to sound like we are celebrating getting away from extended family. Far from it actually. I've never had a Christmas without my family, so this is going to mark a major turning point in my life. However, I am looking forward to celebrating in our own home for the first time ever; just whaiāipo, me and our five beautiful children.

At the minute we're trying to decide whether to follow the traditional roast, have a BBQ, or put down a hangi. It's a very important decision to make because I'm very much wanting to devise our own family traditions and it's a hard one to decide how we celebrate this year. As much as I'd love to have a roast, I have to say, in all honesty, if the weather is anything like it is today, the last thing I will want to do is stand in a hot kitchen cooking over a hot stove etc. But I can't deny the fact that a delicious roast dinner with all the trimmings is always very welcoming and festive indeed. Hmm, decisions, decisions ...


Thanks for dropping by
ka kite ano

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