Happy Birthday, Nice-to-Meet-You, and Long-Time-No-See

This week, there are two birthdays in my family, one very dear friend, and a reunion with my college roommate. Time to go shopping, right? No, my friends. No. I’ve managed to resist the urge to shower my loved ones with more material “stuff” to clutter their lives. Practicing what I preach. That’s what I *always* do …

Instead, I had two birthday lunch dates and spent hours catching up with my Mom and my niece. I’m planning to schedule a phone date with my long-lost friend in the very near future, so we can laugh at the juxtaposition of our parallel lives. And, on Friday, my daughter and I are visiting my college roommate (whom I have not seen since her wedding 12 years ago) and her daughter for a Princess Tea. Our daughters will get to make new friends, paint their fingernails, have their hair done (complete with sparkles and tiaras), dress up in fancy gowns, and pose for a photo shoot. Show me a four-year old girl who would not LOVE that. Meanwhile, my girlfriend and I will get to visit and catch-up on the years that have slipped us by.

Replacing material goods with relationships and memories. That’s the goal of this minimal challenge. I’m not exaggerating when I tell you that if I can do this, you can too.

Let me be very clear … if I were a magical princess, my talent would be gift wrapping. I love giving gifts so much that I have perfected the art of gift wrapping. I think it brings me more joy to see perfectly-wrapped packages than to actually open the presents. In some cases, I may have spent more money on the wrapping paper than on the actual gift itself. So, minimizing my gift giving is a legitimate challenge. This week should have included several birthday gifts to give in person, a care package to my out-of-state friend, and a token of my love for my long-lost roommate. And a “nice-to-meet-you” gift for her daughter, right?

But, alas, it did not. Instead, this week is giving me ample opportunity to prepare for the holidays.

[Insert cliché about good things coming in small packages, or the equivalent of the best things coming in no packages … or Minimalism is the new black. Or … You don’t need gifts to have a good time. *Vows to work on tag line before the holidays.*]


About Not-so-SuperMomma

See my previous blog at www.theminimalchallenge.wordpress.com to learn about how I used to be a SuperMom ...
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5 Responses to Happy Birthday, Nice-to-Meet-You, and Long-Time-No-See

  1. Meredith says:

    i too LOVE gift wrapping. my dilemma is not so much about minimalism, it’s about how wrapping paper is environmentally irresponsible! I’m torn with making boxes pretty and how useless the wrapping paper is. Every time the holiday season comes around I think I should just go out and get a job wrapping for other people…

    • Yes! I agree with you about the environmental irresponsibility … sometimes I think that instead of wrapping in paper, we should use the decorative bags for everything–which can be used over and over again. But then, that’s still paper. So then I think we should use cloth grocery bags–then it’s two gifts in one … the gift, and the environmentally responsible grocery bag … because everybody has to buy groceries. Maybe we should spend our time sewing decorative pillow cases out of fun fabric, and wrapping our gifts in those instead … but then I guess that’s just one more item to minimize. 🙂

  2. Pingback: Overcoming Insecurity by Spending | The Minimal Challenge

  3. Tiffany says:

    This year, I wrapped all my presents in yarn. The results are AMAZING! The look of all the presents is so warm and comfy! This Yarn I pulled out of old sweaters (called frogging), or that I had made from T shirts (T Shirt yarn or Tarn). The yarn can be a gift as well for the recipient to keep, or just rolled back up into a ball to be used later by me in one my projects, to sell or to give!

    • I love this idea. Thank you for sharing! I’ve often thought about sewing pillowcases out of fun fabric and wrapping gifts in a gift … but then I wonder if the pillowcase would actually get used or just be more “stuff.” So, while we’re both on the same track, I love that your yarn can be rolled back up and used again. Brilliant!

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