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Why do I let myself get so stressed this time of year????

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

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With the economy being so bad you would think others would think before they come up with all this..It happens every year and usually I handle it calmly..Maybe it is because this week has been extra stressful with trying to make sure everything edible in the house stretches to get us to Friday..Where gas money will come from this week...Or that my last two paychecks were short because my hours were cut...I have being hearing nothing but parties,presents,school bizares,class parties,daycare parties,ect...And they all want donations..I could cry...I have two holiday parties..with gift limit of 20 bucks each..For work..I opt out of them every year..Always look like the "Grinch" but I deal with it in my own way cause there is no way I can fork over 40 bucks when that would come out of my rent money.But for the little one...Daycare has sent home a paper...They are having a big holiday party at the big playplace..Bring a 15$ gift for a girl and a dish to pass..School has not only send home a paper with class party instuctions requesting store bought only treats but a gift to pass worth 10$. Plus in my little ones folder was a plastic christmas bag with her name on requesting 10$ worth of store bought christmas candy for the school Christmas bizare to donate..Every child who turns it in will get a small reward.She is already going on about these fabulous things that are going to happen in December ..Heck I am still trying to figure out where I am going to get $$ to buy a small christmas tree.How can I break her heart and deny her these fun activities that her friends will share..Why should she be punished because we are in a bad place right now..How can I even tell her no because we can't afford it??   I wish I could homeschool because then we wouldn't be affected by so much holiday drama...Sigh..just needed to vent..It will all work out in the end...Thanks for letting me whine on here..I have no other place...innocent.gif

post #2 of 16

For you DD, talk to the school or the teacher.  They should have a 'charity' account and your DD shouldn't suffer.  The school should be able to pick up her costs and whatevers.

 

As for office holiday cr@p.  I always hated that and looked like the worlds largest grinch but honestly I couldn't ever get into that stuff.  That is one part of not working that is a positive - i guess.

post #3 of 16

*hugs*

 

Just explain to the school that there simply isn't funds for these items, and that since they are not academically related events they are not on your priority list. Really a school has no place making demands for items that are totally unrelated to learning anyways. 

 

 

As for the office - a good excuse is to say you don't celebrate XYZ holiday for "Religious" reasons. It's worked for me in the past, without seeming like a Grinch. 

post #4 of 16

For your daughter, I agree, speak to the school.  I'm sure they would have a way of helping you so your daughter doesn't miss out. 

 

At work, they made an announcement about Secret Santa.  They said "everyone that wants to participate, email this person".  I didn't email.  Then we all got a reminder email saying to reply if we wanted to participate.  I didn't reply.  Then the person arranging it came over to me and asked why I hadn't replied, because I was the only person in the team who hadn't replied to participate.  You'd think they'd get the picture, right?  So, I agreed to participate - mainly because she asked in front of everyone, and I was embarrassed. 

 

The money is one thing, but it's wasteful too.  You only end up buying/receiving food or some crappy novelty that you could have done without.  And it's not like these people are my friends... I only go there because they pay me! Just call me Grinchy. 

post #5 of 16

I totally hate this kind of stuff . First of all, it just seems to make everyone miserable.  We all spend money that should be going to other things, giving stupid presents to people we may not even like, the presents clutter up other people's lives, the whole things strips a fragile earth of precious resources as well, and in one year 90% of the presents will end up in the landfill.  And the time it requires would be much better spent actually spending time with other people, helping the world or reading a book or having a nice walk in the forest.  I do not opt in. 

 

I do not feel guilty.  My kids know it is stupid and ridiculous too. 

 

We are NOT grinches, expect maybe the reformed grinch who realizes what this holidays are really about.  Peacefulness, restoration in the midst of the darkness, love. 

post #6 of 16

I understand having party (though I don't see why they need to have a school party) at school, but bringing a gift seems so unreasonable. Asking each parent to donate an inexpensive food item and they have the kids make something together, would be more meaningful and fitting in this season.

 

I am sorry the school and daycare don't seem to get it. When I worked in daycare, the daycare hosted a few family events and provided all the food. In daycare, families have many different needs and to ask them to provide items that aren't necessary to the child's day, is very unreasonable. We never asked our families for bought items, only things like toilet paper tubes, or milk containers.

post #7 of 16

I totally understand the problem. Some tricks I use:

  • Get gifts at the dollar store or thrift store (you can sometimes find still-in-the-package stuff) and remove any price stickers.
  • I save gifts for my kids that they don't "need" (ie, crap toys that will just clutter) from previous holidays and regift.
  • Complain to my parents (the grandparents) and let them "volunteer" to get the stuff for me (it helps that I cultivate a reputation for forgetting things for school, etc.)
  • When coworkers ask me to get stuff for their kids' fundraisers, I get inexpensive, general gifts that I can give to teachers, daycares, etc.
  • I earn at least 15 SwagBucks each day, which I can use to get gifts or gift cards to buy gifts

 

Hope some of this helps.

post #8 of 16

Don't feel bad!  How old is your DD?  Last year we couldn't afford to do anything with the school.  Sucked but I told my girls exactly why and since they are who they are they enjoyed being poor... Really?  YUP!  Apparently poor was awesome!  And we weren't the only ones.  And because things turned around so well for us this year.  I'm doing most of the donating for the parties.  I'm DD1's class parent and I'm supplying it all.  The parents can take a load off this year and just come and enjoy the party.  Last year lots of parents didnt come because they couldn't afford to bring anything.  This year I'm inviting them to come and help make things and play games ONLY. 

 

This year may be not what you want it to be and but you never know how next year might be.  Always look forward to the day you can do more in a way that is comfortable to you.  Good luck mama.

post #9 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Imakcerka View Post

 And because things turned around so well for us this year.  I'm doing most of the donating for the parties.  I'm DD1's class parent and I'm supplying it all.  The parents can take a load off this year and just come and enjoy the party.  Last year lots of parents didnt come because they couldn't afford to bring anything.  This year I'm inviting them to come and help make things and play games ONLY. 

 

This year may be not what you want it to be and but you never know how next year might be.  Always look forward to the day you can do more in a way that is comfortable to you.  Good luck mama.


Bless you for this beautiful act!  Not only for doing it, but for seeing it and knowing that others are struggling.  And that the value is in the making and the playing and not particularly in the buying. Hurray for you!

 

 

post #10 of 16

I feel for you! I deal with the same thing.Turn down everything but the kids stuff.Ugh,like secret santa gift swap and $$$ for class parties.No one can understand that a parent can't fork over $5-20 when they pay 5k for tuition,but that is just it....you have nothing left after the big stuff for those little things. I tell people the amount we live off of,but maybe they think I am lying to get freebies,lol.Unfortunately we never get freebies.

 

I do hope there is a fund or someone will help pay for your kiddo!

post #11 of 16

That's really a shame they're doing that way at your children's daycare and school. At my kids' elementary school they have an "angel tree" with paper ornaments hung on it listing requested items for families in need in the school. We're fortunate enough to be able to help out, but helping is on an entirely voluntary basis, so if we didn't have enough to help out no one would ever know. I'm not sure how they know who to put on the tree, but maybe the kids who get free lunch or who's parents have requested help?

post #12 of 16

For you daughter I would absolutely send a note to the teacher. Our PTA (I am vice president) would cover those costs for your daughter.

post #13 of 16

I don't think its the kids who get free lunch. My kids get free lunch and they are NOT on an angel tree.

post #14 of 16

Do you have one at your school, too, 3times? I really don't know how they figure it out at our school. It may be the school social worker nominates families who are known to be having a hard time. At any rate, anyone at the school who wants to participate in helping can, but they certainly aren't obligated to buy a $15 present if they don't want to or don't have the money to.

 

Oh, and of course, the names aren't really on the tree, just "girl 8 years old" and a suggestion of a present or item needed, kinda like the MDC holiday helpers.

post #15 of 16

We don't have an angel tree but we have a church that sends meals home over the weekend with kids. They only send them with children based on teacher recomendation. Basically the children who are clearly not eating over the weekend. I would imagine it goes on Teacher recommendation. (or any faculty for that matter.)

post #16 of 16

What do they expect to do with 10 dollars worth of candy from each kid?!?!? 

 

Yuck! 

 

Hugs, mama.  I totally know how you feel.  My kids go to a public school and it feels like we get nickel and dimed on field trips, this expense, that expense...

 

And I think it is very generous to have people/the school offer to cover the cost, but that takes time/energy and grace that sometimes mamas are short on... Its just another thing to do. 

 

))hugs))) here's to getting through the holidays with a little dignity and joy intact! 

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