It is Christmas Day, and my wife and I have just finished opening our stockings. We’ve use this method of gift exchanging for most of our relationship, and it’s something that I really cherish.
I’ve always found gifts problematic because it’s a very social activity. There are so many rules around it, and I’ve always had trouble knowing what sort of gift to give, how to figure out what someone might want, and how much to spend.
My family puts a lot of pressure on things like finding the perfect gift and spending enough on someone, which honestly makes the holiday season really stressful. My wife’s family is nothing like this, and it took a while to get used to. Even with their celebration was low-key, I still found it stressful. I’ve gotten more used to it, and I became more excited about celebrating with them, and my wife and I used their model for our own Christmas celebration, which I deeply enjoy.
On Christmas Eve, we exchange pajamas and books, and then in the morning, we eat cinnamon rolls and exchanges stockings.
The way we do stockings is that we agree on a set amount of money we each get to spend, depending on how the budget is looking. This is helpful because I don’t have to guess how much I should spend. One we’ve got an amount, we have the attitude of ‘go and use x dollars to fill my stocking with things you think I’ll love!’. There are items that make it into the stockings every year, like candy and chocolate, fun socks, and themed coffee mugs. The rest is a mystery until Christmas morning, and that’s what makes it fun!
I never thought that I’d be here telling you how much I love Christmas, but I’m so glad my tiny family has traditions that make me so happy!