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Debra Carpenter Headshot

Why I'm Not Buying You Christmas Presents

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You know those flustered procrastinators that wait until Christmas Eve to buy presents? That's usually me. We're halfway through December and Christmas's close proximity is becoming a reality I can't possibly ignore. I haven't purchased a single gift yet, and I'm sort of considering keeping it that way this year. But don't worry -- I've got a backup plan and some good reasons.

Some Good Reasons

1. I'm not a millionaire. I wouldn't even be a thousandaire if that were a real thing. I happen to have a very large extended family (excuses, excuses) and buying gifts for everyone I love would break even the wealthiest bank. If I had an unlimited amount of money, I would buy everyone I knew presents that were so extravagant it would be embarrassing for all parties involved.

"You bought a private jet... for me? But I'm just your pharmacist. I've met you like three times."

Since that's not the case, you're not getting a store-bought gift (or a private jet, just to clarify).

2. I really enjoy making crafts, candies, and baked goods to give to my friends and family as gifts. As far as I'm aware (which, admittedly, might not count for much), people enjoy receiving these homemade presents. It's either that, or they don't know how to tell me my banana bread is disgusting and my hand-made salt dough ornaments are hideous. There's just something special about giving a gift that you spent time making versus a store-bought present, or at least that's what my mom always told me when I gave her sloppily-crafted handmade cards and misshapen cookies for her birthday. Bless that woman.

3. If you're like me, you probably don't have any extra room for meaningless trinkets in your house. Every year, people load us down with more blankets, robes, scented candles, and picture frames than we'll ever be able to use. I love Bed, Bath, and Beyond, but I don't want my home to look like a miniature, less organized version of the store. I know, I know -- it's the thought that counts, and I look like a total Scrooge for saying this, but the resulting tower of junk we're left with after Christmas is stressful, to say the least. I'm going to assume you're in the same boat and do you a favor by skipping that mess altogether.

I'm not buying you any Christmas presents this year, but it doesn't mean I don't love you -- or does it? I'm just kind of poor, sort of crafty, and extremely fed up with junky gifts that clog up your house without adding any sort of benefit. Maybe I'll change my mind by next Christmas, but until then, should I put you down for a glittery hand-made card or a lopsided loaf of pumpkin bread?

Debra Carpenter is a novice mother, wife, columnist, and college student. She writes a weekly column, Mother, Interrupted, about the parts of parenthood you didn't expect when you were expecting. Like the fan page at Facebook.com/MotherInterrupted or visit the website at MotherInterrupted.com.