Well, due to abject poverty and the news that we need to come up with 58,000 danish crowns for my residency, my husband and I cancelled Christmas.
However, no one else did. I was all for telling people we were really canceling Christmas and not buying anyone anything, but that's an apparent "no-can-do" around here, which means we still have to buy Christmas presents. My husband's brother, bless him, who we always split the cost of presents with 2/3 to his 1/3, told us to never mind buying him something and that we can do 50/50 and we should try to go on the low end of the budget.
So by "canceling Christmas" all we've really accomplished is that we are not traveling this year and my husband is going to work Christmas Eve in the taxi.
I'm pretty sure I can make a Christmas out of that. I can make a festive meal. I could probably even decorate a bit. I need to find myself a Christmas tree....
Anyway, every year my husband's grandmothers ask for the same thing: stationary. This is because they are convinced that this is a cheap and easy gift to get. The reason they keep asking for it each year - it is not easy to get. Stationary is no longer sold in Denmark.
Okay, I exaggerate, but only slightly. The only place I've ever found stationary was in the kiosk in Ebeltoft. Which means a late night drive out to Ebeltoft tonight or tomorrow night to buy it.
Meanwhile, I have wandered all over Arhus, into book stores, hobby stores (oh wondrous hobby stores!), and stationary stores. And by "stationary stores" I mean the stores that sell fancy pens, fancy paper, photo albums, scrap books, organizers, cards... but no actual stationary.
I mean, in America we have stores dedicated to the stuff! Of course, if I could think about these things enough in advance, I could have ordered on-line. This is what actually bothers me, every year when Christmas suddenly looms on the horizon - I *know* what the Grandmas want and I forget to do something about it! Every year!!