Thursday, December 15, 2011

Another "Hard Christmas"

David Frum, a former Bush speechwriter, was on TV the other day and he noted that we were coming up on what would be the "fifth hard Christmas since 2007."

And I thought to myself, you know, he's right. Nothing outside our parents' (or grandparents') experience of the Great Depression compares. Things have been lean around Travener's household so long that it's hard to recall flusher times, when there were lots of presents under the tree for the kids, and we didn't much care what the tree or Christmas turkey cost.

Last year was so gloomy that we didn't even buy a tree.

Despite a situation that's basically unchanged this year, I decided "no more austerity Christmas." We're going to celebrate like it's the '90s. We'll buy a tree -- a big damn tree. I'm going to get the kids decent presents this year and figure out how to pay for them later.

I hope you all have a good holiday season. Even if you're feeling an economic pinch, try to take part in the celebratory feel of the season. Get a new ornament for the tree or some fancy candles for the menorah. Spike the egg nog with a better class of rum. if you can't afford to do even that, do something special that's cost-free: walk around the neighborhood and look at the lights or take in a concert at the local school.

Let's make the holidays a time of cheer again this year, regardless of the gloom around us.


  1. Damn straight! I'm doing a lot of baking in lieu of presents this year. So far, it's going swimmingly.

  2. We had no real Christmas last year for many reasons that weren't all economic. This year, we're swapping presents and going out to brunch on the 25th. Enjoy the 'nog!

  3. Right on! We usually down-play Christmas but this year we are going to see my wife's family for a few days: she's excited and I like them too. They will cook up a storm and we'll have a good time. I'm not facing economic austerity (right now) so much as a total crunch on my time that is making me depressed. But good for us both for celebrating like we mean it!

  4. Good advice! Sometimes you can only take life one day at a time and enjoy it to the fullest!

  5. LOL @ "We're going to celebrate like it's the '90s"! I hope you have a wonderful season, Travener!

    For our fambly, Christmas hasn't changed much other than the lack of presents. It's still fun.

    (Quick! Hand me some of that eggnog!)

    Wishing a happy 2012 to all!