by Kassandra Lamb
We just had Thanksgiving weekend here in the U.S., so Americans are now all focused on…
While everybody else is gearing up, I’m done. I finished my Christmas shopping last Friday. Now before you decide to hate me, let me point out that my goal of being finished all yuletide acquisitions by December 1st is not necessarily coming from the healthiest of motivations.
There really isn’t a word for what I am. I’m the opposite of a procrastinator. Some people might say that I’m organized, or even disciplined. I am definitely organized. Not so sure about disciplined. Better descriptors for it might be obsessive-compulsive or even control freak! 🙂
Procrastinators put things off for psychological reasons. The task makes them anxious. They’re afraid of screwing it up, so they avoid dealing with it until the very last minute.
I am the opposite for equally neurotic reasons. I am afraid that something will go wrong if I wait too long. That somehow I won’t get it done on time. The thought of that makes me so anxious that I want to do it RIGHT NOW. Get it done and then I know everything is okay!
So I start my Christmas shopping in early October. My brother and I usually go on an all-day shopping
binge trip, hitting at least two or three major stores. Now you might think this odd that my brother goes with me. Before you revoke his man card, let me point out that he does so in the hope that I will find things for him to buy for everybody in the family. And I usually do. I am a shopper extraordinaire.
If I could just figure out how to make a living from shopping…
But I digress. Once I’ve got a big chunk of my holiday shopping done on that trip, do I relax and cruise along, picking up a few things here and there? After all, I’ve got over two months.
Heck no! Once I get started, I want to get it done!
Afraid that I will forget someone, I make a list of everything I’ve got and who I still need some things for. Then I start methodically nailing down those final purchases.
I mentioned last week that I was going to my church’s Holiday Bazaar. We have a wonderful bunch of women (they call themselves the bazaar ladies, and yes the double meaning is intentional) who work throughout the year to make all kinds of gorgeous craft items–wreaths, jewelry, decorated baskets, ornaments, paintings, placemats, baked goods… just about anything imaginable related to Christmas or that would make a good gift. The prices are good, and the proceeds (95-100% of what we pay) goes to help the homeless in our town!
Going into the Bazaar I usually only have a few people left to buy for. This year, I got them all covered. Here’s my haul:
A wreath for my bird-watching friend, Doris (look close; you’ll see the birdies); some luscious-smelling potpourri for JJ; a necklace for Alice; a little something extra for the hubs (even though I thought I was done for him); a cute little felt bag to put a gift card in and… Voila, I’m done!
How about you? Are you a pro-crastinator or a pre-crastinator? When do you usually do your holiday shopping?
Oh, and by the way, I hope you had a very Happy Thanksgiving!
Posted by Kassandra Lamb. Kassandra is a retired psychotherapist turned mystery writer. She is the author of the Kate Huntington mystery series, set in her native Maryland, and a new series, the Marcia Banks and Buddy mysteries, set in Central Florida.
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K.B. OwenDecember 1, 2015 at 7:49 am
I understand that anxiety, Kass! I’m a pre-crastinator, too. This also explains why my mom asks for our Christmas lists in October, even though I try to explain that the kids change their minds and find new things if you ask them too far in advance.
Hope your Thanksgiving was happy, too!
Kassandra LambDecember 1, 2015 at 1:44 pm
LOL We start bugging everybody for lists by the end of September. People are allowed to send out addendums, but often the shopping is already done by then.
Vinnie HansenDecember 1, 2015 at 1:30 pm
Definitely compulsive, too. Most of my shopping is already done, but then the majority of it is for my Jewish husband and Hanukkah starts Dec. 7th this year.
I love that wreath!
Kassandra LambDecember 1, 2015 at 1:46 pm
Good to know I’m not the only compulsive one around here. 😀