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Scrooge-like I know but all this lark is getting a bit much...

(257 Posts)
Jacobandcara Wed 29-Nov-17 07:19:38

Are we ruining Christmas? I remember only 30 years ago Christmas was mentioned a few times the weeks before, I got a quick visit to Santa at the garden centre, wrote a letter and sent it up that chimney and wore an angel costume made out of a pillow case. Magical times.
Nowadays it's all gone crazy. Mums on our local facebook 'what's on' page are clamouring over booking several 'experience' events which cost 20-30 pounds a ticket. So Santa on a train...or visit Santa cove or lights all over the local zoo and we will charge you an arm and a leg. And from the reviews on Facebook people are splashing nearly 100 quid and often these events are badly managed with hours of queing and disappointment.
Christmas eve boxes. And now today I'm a grinch for not doing a 1st of Dec box. Wtf.
The bloody elf on the shelf....yawn.
It used to be just the occassional oddball that put their decorations up in November and now it's ten a penny.
Supermarkets selling ready made nativity costumes for 15quid.
A friend of mine has just paid 20quid for a personalised Santa letter reply. Honestly.
Wheres the charm and magic when it's all drawn out over weeks and weeks?
Bah humbug grin

Sirzy Wed 29-Nov-17 07:21:13

A friend of mine has just paid 20quid for a personalised Santa letter reply.

I saw a fb advert yesterday for personalised Santa letters for babies first Christmas and have to admit I was rather hmm about that one!

BumpowderSneezeonAndSnot Wed 29-Nov-17 07:22:16

You can write to the royal mail and get a reply from Santa for the price of a stamp

BumpowderSneezeonAndSnot Wed 29-Nov-17 07:23:05

Details of how to get a personalised response here

BrutusMcDogface Wed 29-Nov-17 07:23:27

I agree, actually. I've never bought into the Christmas Eve box/elf on the shelf bollocks and guilty on behalf of my kids, who ask "why doesn't an elf come to our house?" sad but I just cba to overdo it like that, and to buy into all of that competitive my-kids-Christmas-is-better-than-yours stuff. I guess it's the fault of social media.

BrutusMcDogface Wed 29-Nov-17 07:25:56

I'm loving the Royal Mail link up there, though! Thanks! This might be the last year my dd believes so think we might do it! smile

TitsalinaBumSqoosh Wed 29-Nov-17 07:27:49

It’s the same with everything though isn’t it? Halloween, Easter, Valentines Day, then we have baby showers, bridal showers, boy/girl reveal parties, hen and stag events that go on for a week. Every year things get longer and more extravagant, it’s not just Christmas.

Personally I think people indulge in these things for longer and harder to take the edge off all the awful news and struggles and government decimating society etc etc etc. It’s hard to live day to day so any chance to do something ‘nice’ to take our mind off it is jumped upon.

queenofthesheds Wed 29-Nov-17 07:28:35

I think people who put their lights up in November are WRONG. There. I’ve said it.

Sayyouwill Wed 29-Nov-17 07:34:32

My parents told me a few years ago that for Christmas they always went big because you never know when you won't be able to and they wanted to fill us with as many magical Christmas memories as possible.
Admittedly they didn't go as ballistic as some people do now, but we'd make a huge deal about putting the tree up, going to see Fenwicks window (Newcastle thing) going to the light switch on, the panto, to see Santa, to pet a reindeer all in the weeks building up the Christmas.
My parents grew up without much money and they said that they would save all year long to make it as magical as possible for us.
Now as adults, my siblings and I all adore Christmas.
We're not starting Christmas until after my son's birthday so no decs or tree for a couple weeks yet but we're sure as hell going to fill our weekends with Christmassy magic

LunasSpectreSpecs Wed 29-Nov-17 07:36:40

With you 100% Jacob. Things were easier and simpler when I was a child. Yes we had stockings, advent calendars, one trip to the panto and made decorations but we didn't have the extra "stuff" which is de rigeur now.

No Christmas Eve boxes, Christmas jumpers, special bedding, Santa trains, breakfast with santa at the garden centre, elf on the fucking shelf, Black friday, Cyber Monday, secret santas at work, nobody put decs up before about 15th December.

People can spend what they like, and blaming the government is just ludicrous. I do think it's very sad that people don't seem to be able to live in the moment though, as soon as the school summer holidays are over it's all about Christmas. October and November hardly get a look in. It seems very strange to me spending your whole year building up to a very short period at the end of December.

And don't even get me started on waste, competitive consumerism and downright GREED. I don't care how much you are spending on your children, how big your pile of presents is and how much you #lovethekids.

Can we start a campaign to have Christmas changed to a 4-yearly event, bit like the World Cup or the Olympics? That would be perfect because by the time it came around people would be genuinely looking forward to it, and not feeling like they're stuck in a Groundhog Day loop of Slade, Wham and Cliff bloody Richard.

HuskyMcClusky Wed 29-Nov-17 07:40:18

Halloween, Easter, Valentines Day, then we have baby showers, bridal showers, boy/girl reveal parties, hen and stag events that go on for a week. Every year things get longer and more extravagant, it’s not just Christmas.

What all this has in common is buying shite.

Everything has been overhyped and extended in order to provide as many opportunities for people to spend $$$$ as possible.

Sad and boring. And environmentally unsustainable.

Sayyouwill Wed 29-Nov-17 07:41:50

In all fairness, Christmas jumper day is for Save the Children charity. Don't know if they started it or jumped on the bandwagon but they're a great charity

LunasSpectreSpecs Wed 29-Nov-17 07:44:15

Agree - Save the Children is an excellent cause. So rather than adding to the tat mountain by buying a cheap acrylic Christmas jumper, just send them the money you'd have spent buying one.

Sarahjconnor Wed 29-Nov-17 07:44:21

We don't do any of those things and don't know anyone who does. Santa comes to school fair or could do the local garden centre but I work with children and I've never heard of anyone doing elf on a shelf or xmas eve boxes or any of the madness I see on mumsnet. It's like a sub culture!

Mistoffelees Wed 29-Nov-17 07:45:00

Brutus your response should be "Because Father Christmas already knows you've been good so he doesn't need to send anyone to spy on you"

AnachronisticCorpse Wed 29-Nov-17 07:49:45

We’ve had our tree up for two weeks grin. We bought a new fake one after years of real ones and had to put it up to check it, so we just left it up. I love it.

We don’t do EOTS but we have done our letters to F.C. I’ll put the rest of the decs up on Friday.

We do try to minimise ‘stuff’ though as it is overwhelming.

Sayyouwill Wed 29-Nov-17 07:52:28

Agree - Save the Children is an excellent cause. So rather than adding to the tat mountain by buying a cheap acrylic Christmas jumper, just send them the money you'd have spent buying one.

Yes I agree, but sadly people don't buy into charities as much unless they get something out of it. So wear pink for cancer research, Macmillan coffee mornings etc. It's a way to raise money for the charity and get people talking.
Many will buy jumpers for a Christmas party and unknowingly donate to Save the Children.
I work in a hotel so it's a way of gently reminding people to donate their change throughout the day, people who otherwise may not have even realised that charity existed.

Stuff like Elf on the Shelf is a pile of wank however, so just to clarify, I'm not justifying all the Christmas shizzel that's around at the moment

LunasSpectreSpecs Wed 29-Nov-17 07:53:13

Sarahjconnor - my youngest is 9, things like Christmas Eve boxes and that fucking Elf have only been a thing for the last 4 or 5 years, since Instagram and PInterest got so popular.... So it's never been a thing in our house.

Friends with younger children do feel pressured into joining in "for the kids" - one of my FB friends was moaning the other day that she wished she'd never started with the elf, that she only did it because other people were and her kids were questioning it, and saying that once you've started, you can't stop. Madness.

I also think telly is a factor - when we were all growing up you had 4 or 5 terrestrial channels. Now most people have cable, satellite or freeview boxes so Christmas films are played on a loop. Sky has its very own Christmas movie channel playing schmaltzy rubbish 24 hours a day from Halloween.

calzone Wed 29-Nov-17 07:56:47

Husky......I just tried to press Like on your post! ((Ashamed 😂))

Honestly, the hype and consumerism is astonishing......

I walk around the shops in a daze looking at people buying mindless generic gifts and I'm actually grateful not to be a part of it.

I don't celebrate Christmas myself and I'm also in a minimalist phase which is simply marvellous so the thought of a ruddy great tree in my house gives me hives. 😂😂😂

No tree
No presents
No endless visiting people who we don't want to see
No arguing or disappointment

However, we do have fab food, films, family time, pubs, walks and mulled wine.

Sarahjconnor Wed 29-Nov-17 07:58:08

I really don't mind what anyone does - I watch MN with fascination! we don't put decorations up until mid December as we have a real tree. I also like to be Christmassy between xmas and new year and I think I'd get sick of it if we went too early. We do have advent calneders at the ready though smile

Nakedavenger74 Wed 29-Nov-17 07:58:41

I despise Xmas but it's totally worth it for the various stories about 'winter wonderland' magical experiences that people pay through the nose for only to find it's a damp field on the outskirts of Grimsby with a pissed santa, a hot dog stall and a miniature fair all run by the local ne'er do well family.

I live for them.

Kitsharrington Wed 29-Nov-17 08:01:33

Wth is a Christmas Eve box??

Notreallyarsed Wed 29-Nov-17 08:01:44

Christmas Jumper day is a load of shite, it’s just more pressure to spend money. I’d rather give directly to the charity but have ended up having to buy 3 Christmas jumpers for the last couple of years so the kids aren’t left out.
My kids are terrified of Elf on the shelf so I don’t do that. We’ve done a Christmas Eve box since I was wee (shoebox in wrapping paper, not a fancy one) so we do that.

It’s the wastefulness and extravagance of Christmas advertising that depresses me. Not everyone is minted, not everyone is inclined or able to spend a months wages on food and gifts, not everyone has a big happy family, the list goes on. It’s just more pressure.

plumandvanilla Wed 29-Nov-17 08:03:19

grin Naked

It's for parents. Not kids.

TammySwansonTwo Wed 29-Nov-17 08:06:18

I agree on some points but my mum started taking us on the local "Santa Express" (steam train journey with Santa handing out gifts) at least 28 years ago when we moved to a new area, so that's nothing new!

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