Feliz Navidad!

This year we decided to take material gifts off our Christmas lists, we sent our friends and family this text last month:

Hi family. Este año decidimos no comprar regalos de Navidad. El dinero que ahorraremos lo pagaremos al mortgage de la casa. We will concentrate on  family time and art. So this year your present to us can be your time and talents. Love the Olivo Girons.

We got a couple of responses like, "why!?", "well I'm giving you something anyway", or "I want a present anyway." Our response was, "okay but we will probably pass the presents on to someone else" or "we will give you a present just wont be store bought."

The first week of November, Isaac and I started thinking of what we wanted to get the kids for Christmas we started making a list but most of the things on the list the kids already have, have had and didn't take care of or really just don't need. We concluded that they don't really "need" anything else and so we decided to make this Christmas about it's true meaning for us as Latino-Americans. 

Growing up, I remember always being so grateful for everything. Navidad my parents did everything to go all out and we were so happy with anything we got, we never requested more.

Even though we always had everything we needed spiritually there were sometimes we had hardships but growing up these are the things I remember least. We had all the essentials for happiness: hugs, hermanos, hermanas, un hogar and comidita caliente every day. We truly believed we were the richest people on earth. 

I realized how bad I'm doing on passing this on to the kids. My essence comes from embracing this community wealth and collective knowledge of the use of love and family to overcome any hardship.

The other day we were watching a home video of my little sisters birthday which is the first week of January. The piñata was a box wrapped as a Christmas present and it was full of candy. Someone in the room said, "wow now that's ghetto style," and at the moment I kinda laughed nervously. Later reflecting I realized how little I remember the details of my childhood happiness. I just remember having so much fun all the time, I never sit down and reflect on why my memories are so full of joy.

The why I came up with last week was: my parents. And so, this Christmas we decided to dedicate our talents and time, to family; in honor of my mom and dad who have done the impossible so that we can accomplish the impossible in our lives. 

We don't intend to force everyone around us to do the same but during the hurry of Christmas shopping stop for a moment and reflect on why your buying that present. Spend a little more time than expected with your loved ones this season. Our time on earth is precious.

Let's use our God-given talents to enrich the lives of those around us. Let's be so happy the people around us can't help but be happy too.

The rest of my posts until the end of the year will be on our alternative Christmas and how the kids are fairing. Stay tuned :-)


Jodi said…
I love this Flor. I could not agree more with the idea. I am struggling too because of how close Sebi's bday is to Christmas. It's just present overload. It's just too much, I hate how materialistic Christmas is and when people go, "my kids got so many gifts, THEY ARE SO LOVED." Yeah, because those kids who don't have wealthy family are "un-loved"?? Sorry for my rant.

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