Life Joy

Christmas Peas

Years ago, my Mom, sis and I started a tradition. At Thanksgiving, we make lists of things we don't necessarily need, but would like to have. A few weeks later, we go shopping together, pick out things we want and then hand them to somebody else to buy. You always get what you want, in the color and style you want and you know it'll fit. We do that all day and then we go eat. You take whatever you've bought and wrap it. There may be a few surprises but mostly it's all the stuff you shopped for yourself. Brilliant!

Shopping for my Mom and sis is difficult because they both buy anything they want or need. I don’t have the bank to buy them new vehicles or houses but really, that’s not what Christmas means to us. If you have the means, then yes, that’s a beautiful gesture. I’d give them the world if I could.

With the economy being so crappy, we agreed it would be a practical and simple Christmas. Besides, like I said, it’s frustrating buying gifts for one another. During one solo shopping trip last year, my sister called me to ask what I wanted. She was aggravated – had been wandering around and didn’t know what to get us. I asked her where she was. She was in Target in Middletown, NY. I was in a Target too, but in Newburgh – another part of the same county. Ironically we were both in the makeup aisle. We bought each other anti-aging serum. I told her not to worry about getting anything else and with a sigh we both declared our shopping finished. It is what it is.

But last year my sister gave my mother a gift that will go down in history. I’ll likely remember it for the rest of my life. The gift was inside a small, colorful, shiny gift bag. Mom and I looked at it curiously. There was tissue paper peeking out of the top and a bow. Oooh, what could it be?

It was a can of Le Sueur® Baby Peas.

Peas!! Very Young Small Sweet Peas. We laughed for like, 15 minutes straight. To symbolize her frustration with gift giving and the stupidity of the commercialism of Christmas, she bought us food. I got a box of Cheerios. Priceless. This year my mom and I both received a box of tissues. I’m reaching for my Christmas tissues right now because I’m laughing so hard, I’m crying.

But yeah, anyway, what it’s really about is being together. Mom cooked and we ate. It was just the three of us and it was nice. One of the best gifts I received was a new bed warmer. It’s like a mattress pad with heat – wonderful! The one I had was older and not heating properly. The new one is like a heating pad. I keep it on the first setting and I’m deliciously warm. Ahhhh. I also got a Wonder Bra! I picked it out and tried it on. It’s fabulous. Everything else I received was practical: fleece and long johns. The funniest thing is we all try to act surprised when we open the gifts we picked out. I know there are people who have huge families and children and such and that’s beautiful. But I have to say there’s no better Christmases than the ones I share with my mother and sister.

Originally Written: December 26, 2008


Hi. I'm Valerie. Glad you're here – come on in and sit a spell. I've never put so much of my writing online but I share my personal experiences in hopes that I help someone in some way. I hope you find something you read thought-provoking, amusing or encouraging. Reach out or comment if you like. Please forgive the typos, grammar and cussing. Thanks for stopping by.

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