Today we went shopping to choose our Christmas presents from each other. How very unromantic, I hear you say!
But think about it, dear readers. This
way we both know we are going to receive a present which we need / want / pine after. If necessary (as was the case today) we will be able to try our presents on to ensure they fit / suit us. I will insist that Mr B wraps up my present, even though
I know what it is, in Christmas wrapping paper. If he can manage a red ribbon tied in an extravagant bow, that will be so much the better (if somewhat unlikely.) And we have promised to buy each other a small gift so that we will still be able to say "surprise,
surprise!" on Christmas morning.
Everyone has their own view of this Present Buying Business For Your Nearest and Dearest. At one end of the scale, there are the extravagant present
givers - the more expensive the better. These are the "Diamonds Are A Girl's Best Friend" variety. At the other end of the scale are those who agree, perfectly amicably, that they will not exchange presents at all. These are the "All I Want for Christmas
is You" type. Mr B and sit, comfortably enough, somewhere in the middle. There's nothing wrong with being in the middle, I'll have you know. It's quite a comfortable place to be.
We also received
Christmas lists from two of the grandchildren (Wake up, Jack and Hazel, we are still waiting for yours!) These lists arrived in our inbox via email - Katie and Eleanor are both far too old and grown-up and Young Lady-like now to post
them up a chimney, even if they had one in their house. Now all we need to do is to work out what all these present suggestions mean and try to interpret which, from the whole list, is the "must have" of Christmas 2012.
At least we know what "vans" are this year. They look exactly like the canvas shoes we used to wear for school in Our Day - but cost infinitely more. We bought Katie white vans last Christmas and I was SO disappointed when I saw them
- but she fell upon them with undisguised - and unexpected - glee. Just goes to show how much I know about anything. I see she has put vans (of a different colour) on her list again this year. Eleanor wants anything to do with The Hunger Games.
She showed me the relevant website last time we visited, so I know that it carries 7,298 different pieces of merchandise to choose from. How many hours...?
Mr B says we should just give
them vouchers. He points out that these would be (i) just as well appreciated and (ii) enable them to buy exactly what they want. But I'm sorry, that just won't do. The purchase of a voucher is simpy not exciting enough. Back to the
list, Mr B!
The Middle of the Darling Daughters always goes "off list". She is famous in our family for having the innate ability to sniff out the Perfect Present for any recipient. The rest of
the family rely on lists - or take each other shopping like Mr B and me today.
Shopping for our presents, of course, was today's Advent Adventure, along with seeing the town's
Christmas tree unloaded from a lorry and hauled into position. OK, so we didn't actually lend a hand with either the unloading or the hauling. You might say we were passive participants in this particular Adventure.
Passive participation is just fine, in my book...