Friday, December 15, 2006

Nasty Christmas

Hello, my name is Litelysalted... and my family sucks at Christmas. Well, not my whole family. My grandmother sucks at Christmas, and she passed it down to my mother, and luckily for my sister and myself the gene seems to have dispersed itself out at this point. Although for me, the holiday season has long since lost it's spiritual connotations, I still enjoy spending time with loved ones and bestowing onto them thoughtful and considerate gifts.

My mother, on the other hand, seems to have missed the thoughtful and considerate part. Her problems are as follows:

1. She loves shopping.
2. She loves deals.
3. She buys what she likes, not what you like.
3.5. She has awful, nonsensical taste.

This would explain last year's haul which included: A ginormous Santa Head cookie jar, a bizarre metal (painted to look like wrought iron) fold-up chair (compliments of Boscov's) with a lacquered wicker seat*, a dark-teal leather jacket from Macy's, and whorey, suede(ish) knee-high lace up boots with faux fur accents that look like they were lifted from J-Lo's closet (circa 1999).

This would also explain why a family friend who is deployed in the Navy and will be out at sea for Christmas, will be receiving a package in the mail containing a stuffed dog who sings and dances to "Blue Chistmas," much to the chagrin of other family members who previously attempted to talk her out of this.

My grandmother is even worse because all of her shopping problems can be summed up by #2. For her, Christmas has always been a game to see what cheapest single item she can purchase from Strawbridges or Kohl's, like matching sweaters for my sister and I with oversized buttons going up one sleeve for like, two dollars each, and as you open it she crows, "Now, you better like it, because I can't take it back!" And who can forget the Christmas where she got our boyfriends matching Fake-Old Navy "Tech Vests" from Kohl's, about 3 years after those vests went out of style? (And that they ever were actually "stylish" is debatable in itself.)

Another reason why my Mom sucks at Christmas is because she'd rather just tell you what to get for her than be surprised. Unfortunately, these gifts usually fall into the mundane or difficult to find, as she just describes something she makes up in her head and requests that you find this item that she's thinking of. For example, a favorite pair of pants she owned years before, only they don't "make them anymore" and you're expected to find a reasonable facsimile.

I said "never again" after the year where Mr. Litelysalted and I scoured all 53 department stores in the King of Prussia Mall looking for a pair of "Black, mid-length boots with a low-heel which are water resistant and lined to wear in the snow but are also nice enough to wear to work." To hell with you, Mom, you're getting jewelry from Red Envelope and you're going to like it.

Since we're still a few months from moving into our new house we're building, and we have piles of stuff stockpiled in the current two rooms of our home (therefore, no room for Christmas gifts), I was promised a minimal of gratuitous crap this year, and instead putting the budget towards an Ikea giftcard. Yet, I have a feeling I'm still going to be unwrapping enough stuff to make for a pretty entertaining photo blog, so stay tuned!

*We actually still have this chair in our basement, since returning it was more trouble than it was even worth, so check back for a photo update to fully illustrate the craptasticness of what I'm dealing with, here.

In other holiday-themed news, I'm leaving shortly to attend my office Holiday Party. You know what that means, kids: Daytime Drunkenness! Hooray!


Beth said...

1. Dad actually ended up reasoning with her and talking her out of the Blue Christmas dog. Thank god.
2. Bite your tongue. I'm picking up your IKEA gift card for her today. Don't be a brat, because she's being VERY generous.

litelysalted said...

Geez Beth whaddaya getting your period or something? Don't think I don't appreciate it, but you know there's ceramic Santa miscellany in both of our futures. And that is still funny.

couscouscaboose said...

Oh God. I can't wait for the pictures!

Although I have to admit that I'm one of those people who tells people what gifts I want. I am bratty that way, I guess. It's like "Hey, here's my Amazon Wish List, get me something off of there." I figure if you're going to spend money on me it should be something I'm going to enjoy. Unless you have really really good taste and figure something out that I love. That's the best, but it rarely happens. Blah blah blah.

Anonymous said...

I can empathize. Gift giving really comes down to the trials and tribulations of people who HAVE to celebrate the season by purchasing presents for one another. My Mom is mostly good at the 'shopping' but when she missteps, and your face at opening said misstep isn't alight with the joy of jesus, you then have to suffer the wrath of moody, incessant questioning and explaining about why the gift seemed fitting at the time of purchase. I spend a lot of holiday time massaging my falsley smiling jaw and repeating "No, no, this sequined, pink skirt with the lime paisley pattern is just what I wanted!"*

My Grandmother (like yours) is the WORST ..but we've solved this problem with "Umm.. MomMom? (That's what I call her. Aww:/) What would you think about just throwing some money in a box for me this year? I mean, it's a waste of time to go out and suffer through the crowds and then have to wrap everything and then wonder if I really like it, right?" At first I thought she'd be offended but guess what I got last year? That's right, rolled up $20 bills in a sassy little gift box that amounted to a very decent sum of money indeed.

* I'm an ungrateful bitch.

litelysalted said...

From one ungrateful bitch to another, you have no idea how much I love you... (in the face) for commenting on this.

On the bright side? I'm watching Cops right now, over some Syrah and Smoked Cheddar (because I'm fucking classy like that) and the segment du jour was about a mother-daughter prostitution team. So, I suppose things could always be worse.

Walrus Gumboot said...

At least you have a fuckin' family to celebrate Christmas with!

Mine "disbanded" in 1977 after my Mom died.

So quit your whining!

The 2nd sentence is true! (The names were changed to protect the innocent)

Walrus Gumboot said...

I'm going to post this here too, just in case you don't read your prior thread!
Sorry for trhe duplicate post!

You do know that everybody hangs out at The Angry Ferrets?
Zanna, Pinky-Nip, LadyJane, jrzmomy, RichPort, Me and a whole slew of other people you have probably heard of!

You have to register... but it's well worth the time it takes!

Come on over!

litelysalted said...


Wally I don't know how you continue to be my blog-friend seeing as I habitually (although inadvertently) manage to offend you and stick my foot in my mouth all the time... ;)

Thanks for the invite. I shall see you there!

aejr said...

the most annoying thing is people who refuse to tell you what they want, and then are visibly disappointed with what you get them. get them nothing, that's what i say.

Anonymous said...

oh my gosh - we should immediately write a screenplay about a mother and daughter hooker team....DURING CHRISTMAS!!

my holiday spirits are officially lifted.

Walrus Gumboot said...

Salted - I've always thought that being offensive to your fellow human being was what blooging was all about?

Could I be wrong... again?

Walrus Gumboot said...

blooging = blogging

Anonymous said...