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Picking My Christmas Presents

December 5, 2018

I have a pretty good idea what I’m getting for Christmas. Not for certain, but I have a pretty good idea. In fact, I have a “Christmas List.” I’ve seen it. Of course, I’ve seen it. I wrote it.

We have a tradition in our family. With 13 kids, and mom and dad, and birthdays and Christmas, picking presents can get kind of hard. Especially when you have to help kids pick presents for other kids. So, we decided to implement Christmas lists (and birthday lists.) A Christmas or birthday list, is just that, a list of presents you want.

Most times kids get it. Occasionally, one of them goes a little off the rails. We’ve seen Rolex watches listed, expensive vacations to Europe, cars. But, most of the time the lists are reasonable.

I have kids headed to college. They want things like

  • Mini-fridge
  • Math Calculator
  • Toaster
  • Backpack.
  • Dishes

Others are more interested in

  • Ski stuff
  • Name brand clothes
  • Gas. . .lots of gas

Some of the items are more simple,

  • Gum
  • Apron
  • Curved needles

We also do name exchanges at Christmas. We put everyone’s name in a hat and each person draws a name. That’s the person you have for Christmas. The twist is that no one knows who has their name. It’s like the old game of Assassin I played back in high school. You had the name of the next person. Someone out there had your name.

It’s why the Christmas list works. You don’t have to worry about multiple people picking the same thing off the list. Only one person is working from the list.

And lists are not absolute. Just because someone puts up a list doesn’t mean that you have to buy from it. It’s more a guideline than an actual rule.

My case is somewhat special. My brithday is this month, just after Christmas. And my anniversary is just a few days before Christmas. So, my list is often an anniversary/Christmas/birthday list.

My kids are old enough that they can actually afford to get their own presents. The last few years I’ve typically put a “combined” gift on my list. and I’m past the ties and socks phase. A couple years ago I got a dishwasher for Father’s Day. Another time I got 50 landscaping rocks for our front yard.

This year, my list includes simple things through some more complex things. The combined gift if all my kids get together and want to buy it is an over-the-stove microwave. Our current one quit working about a month ago.

The rest of my list is:

  • “The Spy” by Clive Cussler
  • Pleasant Grove High School sweatshirt
  • Dilbert desk calendar
  • “Jack Welch and GE Way” business book
  • Pocket watch
  • Clock radio

Rodney M Bliss is an author, columnist and IT Consultant. His blog updates every weekday. He lives in Pleasant Grove, UT with his lovely wife, thirteen children and grandchildren.

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(c) 2018 Rodney M Bliss, all rights reserved

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