@Stina Oh, thanks for the hug! :) I have been meaning to do it for a while now and I just feel bad that it takes a holiday to motivate me to actually do something about it.
1. I spent $585.14 unless you count cards which brings it to 679.51 including postage. I also plan to make a cash gift to a friend whose family is in challenging times but I haven't yet and don't know how much, probably $300-500. 2. I spent pretty evenly between my parents and spouse, about $100-120 each. The most expensive single item is either the backpack I got for dad or the jacket I got for husband. 3. Other gifts were for our nephews and niece, the youngest of whose gift was only like 8 bucks. 4. I estimated about $100 for my parents and spouse, $50 each for my parents-in-law, and $20 or so each for the kids, but beyond that, no overall budget. 5. Pretty much. 6. No. 7. Yes, I feel good about giving this year. It seems like a lot, but I had a plan and I stuck to it, and I didn't go overboard or ever feel stressed about it. I really love giving people things they'll like. I never give out of obligation, so I feel pleased with the outcome.
But he's supposed to be relatable! That's how we learn a lesson from the story. Although it's clear that he's an extreme case, we all get a littly humbug-y sometimes, too focused on work, overlooking our personal relationships. The reader is supposed to learn the same lessons Scrooge learns, and you have to identify with him a little in order to do that.
Ugh. Yes. For the past couple of years I kept an amazon wishlist due to "You're so hard to shop for, you never want anything" complaints. But no one has used it! I don't expect fancy gifts (or any gifts, honestly) but if someone asks me what I want and I tell them and they end up getting me something else, it is slightly annoying to end up without the thing I wanted even though I always appreciate the gesture. Which makes me horrible and this is why I dislike receiving gifts. Either I feel guilty for being annoyed at the above situation, or I feel guilty that I asked for something and they bought it for me. It's a no win situation.
I've never been to NYC before, but I really wish I could plan a visit just for this! Can you like, live-stream it or something?
@stephstern Yeah that's true in both directions. Burn-out is real.
@Derbel McDillet Yeah exactly. Call centers, retail, food service, reception. Those aren't careers that many people think of "pursuing" or that are seen as highly valued. But those jobs had value to me because it helped me decide I wanted that kind of interaction to be part of my career, and in what different ways/settings I was good at it and found it enjoyable.
Absolutely, yes! I wish that someone would have brought this up at one of the dozens of career fairs that we went to in high school and college. No one ever explained to me how you pick a career. Why is there so much focus on being a subject expert when the real competencies of work are much more about skills than knowledge? I chose my career because I loved customer service and finding answers for people, and I really like to be creative and make things, which I hope I'll get to do more of as my career progresses. If a kid asked me how to decide what career she should go into, I would say start working now and notice what you like/don't like about the work, keep practicing at learning things (the point of college), try as many different subjects as you can, and keep an open mind.
@garli Trader Joe's employees are generally awesome, especially this time of year. It is terrifying in there right now. But their turkeys are so good.
I know I'm late to the game on this but recently I got a box of toasted coconut pancake mix from Trader Joes (after two employees at separate times in the store said they were good) and they were soo good! No coconut flavoring in them, just bits of toasted coconut, which you could easily add to your favorite pancake batter.