At 10PM on Christmas Eve…
…My Chemical Romance and I had a discussion about the differences in our cultural backgrounds and how I’m the Grinch. You see, I was raised Jewish. And I’m an only child. Ergo, I didn’t give a shit from whom the presents came (or where), I just wanted presents.
My Chemical Romance was raised… vaguely Christian-esque, with a large dose of Santa and two sisters.
I assumed my offspring felt the way I do about presents. I live with these kids every day, I know how they are about stuff.
I also wrongly assumed that I’d spent this holiday season nursing a newborn so I wouldn’t make it out to buy gifts. Joke’s on me! Thank you, ama*zon.com for having everything I needed (except for a whole-house humidifier). You came through, except when I get static shocks from opening the fridge.
Meanwhile, My Chemical Romance has this complicated scientific Christmas formula in his head that I only learned of tonight, but he wants to adapt it for our family — starting next year, since this Christmas is almost upon us and now it’s nearly 11pm and we have boycotted Wal*Mart for over three years now and Tar*get is closed, so hopefully this year the kids will simply enjoy their gifts and next year we’ll start the REAL tradition.
It took me a while to catch on, but now I totally get the plan and I think it’s great, and here’s how it works:
1. A certain amount of money is set aside for each kid, for gifts from Santa, and from mom and dad. Say $50/kid. So they will get at least one gift from Santa (which will not get wrapped) and one gift from us (wrapped). Or they might get a few small gifts from Santa (unwrapped) and a few small gifts from us (wrapped). Or some combination thereof, as long as the monetary value is equal to $50 (or whatever we decide).
2. We give each kid $5 for each sibling, to buy each other gifts. I’m sincerely hoping we can encourage them to pool their money for each other, or I’m going to end up with a bunch of tiny plastic dollar-store toys that will be broken by (next) New Year’s Eve.
3. My Chemical Romance and I have a set amount of money to buy each other one gift, one gift from Santa, and one gift from the kids, divided however we want.