Foiling the Xmas wish list

2011-11-21 00:00

MY children are well versed in the commercialism of Christmas and they start planning their wish lists in October and dropping hints, not so subtle ones either. When they were younger I would get cutesy letters to Santa with the word (Mom) scrawled in brackets. I was supposed to post these to the North Pole.

The letters would often end up scrunched up in my handbag — ignored. I never really had to read them — I had these requests repeated to me parrot fashion on a daily basis. But sometimes the letter was discovered by a tearful child who was allegedly devastated. “Mom you have missed the North Pole deadline .” Yeah, yeah!

Now I have supermarket pamphlets placed strategically on my pillow with big red circles drawn around the particular prized items. With the words “This is v cool!” scrawled next to it.

Oh, my heart bleeds with the spirit of giving. My wallet has a yearly apoplectic fit. I have tried to counter this by emphasising the meaning of Christmas and telling them they are far too old to believe in Santa. I sit them down and explain my dismal financial situation with pie charts and bar graphs but when it comes to Christmas it is like hitting a brick wall.

Hollywood, Hallmark and the Christmas decoration companies have formed a giant monopoly and they brainwash our kids. Instead of “Happy Christmas” they have replaced it with “I want”.

So I have a suggestion — and you will all think I am a nasty Scrooge. But we parents need to come up with a diabolical plan to foil these money-making companies and our brainwashed kids.

I got an idea from life-skill classes for teenagers where they teach them about sex and responsibility. They have to carry a baby doll around for a week and treat it like a real baby. Change nappies, feed it on schedule, wake up in the night and do all the things a newborn would require — if that is not effective contraception I don’t know what is.

Now for my anti-Christmas commercialism plan. We give our kids a budget and get them to do the Christmas shopping and budgeting. Make them cook the Christmas lunch and we can sit back and relax — we deserve it.

Why should we search the entire planet looking for some overpriced items we know they will get tired of in two weeks. Yes, I’m psychic too!

But we must insist that there has to be money left over in January for school uniforms, food, petrol and the usual items. The other rules are very strict — no getting into debt and no moaning. It is Christmas after all. Ho, ho ho!

I believe this little experiment will be very beneficial for normal children. It will teach them the real meaning of Christmas and will drive home the realities of living within a budget. Of course there is one flaw in this plan — my devious son.

He can spot and manipulate any situation to his benefit.

He would buy what he wanted for Christmas — no expenses spared of course. The rest of us would all be given a token chocolate and told to be grateful. His idea of reverse psychology. Christmas lunch would be a two-litre Coke and a KFC family feast.

He would make sure he saved enough money in January for a daily allowance from the school tuck shop and we would be given a bag of apples to last the entire month. As for petrol ... his school is within walking distance so he would be alright. No need for petrol.

Luckily with foresight I have devised a counterattack. I will write to Santa and tell him to put my son straight to the top of the “Bad Boy” list because he has failed to put his family first all year.

I will casually leave this letter where he can find it (on top of the television) and then he will be wondering what Mom is up to and what his chances are of getting any­thing at all.

I know that in the dark recesses of a teenager’s mind, a small boy still believes in the possibility of Santa.

 

• If you wish to read more of my columns you can go to my blog — trishbeavers.blogspot.com

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