When I was a kid, stockings were my favorite part of Christmas morning; which is why it is so ironic that I despise them now that I am a parent. Well maybe that is a little too strong. I don’t despise them. I like how they look hanging up near the chimney. I enjoy watching my children pull small gifts out with so much anticipation. I just don’t like shopping for them and filling them.
First of all the shopping… I don’t want to fill them with a bunch of useless plastic junk or candy (I have enough trouble already getting my kids to eat healthy food!). So I try and fill them with useful things they will like and need. I spend way too much time in crowded stores. I spend way too much money! I have the hardest time picking though what’s left to find comparable items for each child because of course I put it off until the last minute.
Then back at home, when I try filling the stockings nothing fits! You have to bend and crush the packages, cram stuff in there until the seams are about to bust (reminds me of a favorite winter story – The Mitten) and then I still have things leftover. Then of course it is impossible to re-hang them because they weigh a ton! This process is far too IMPRACTICAL for me! I tried to eliminate this pagan tradition a couple years ago but the guilt got to me and then I was out shopping even more last minute than usual!
Well, now that the shopping is done and the stockings filled (our stocking mysteriously disappear a few days before Christmas), I can now focus on the fun part, my children’s sheer joy as they manically squeeze out new hats and gloves, spin brushes, small sketch-books, Barbie accessories, a mini Nerf gun, card game, Lego’s, and M&M’s in a tree shaped container, and try and relax and enjoy!