Friday, December 22, 2006

Wish List

My nieces took a ride on the "Polar Express" a few weeks ago, and Santa Claus was on board to ask them what they wanted for Christmas. They each told him and went on their merry way.

Two weeks later Santa Claus calls their home (in conjunction with some fundraiser deal through the church or something) and asks to speak to each of the girls. Santa says his "ho, ho, ho" bit and asks Lauren, who is three, what she wants for Christmas; and she replies "I've already told you on the train." Gosh, doesn't Santa know she doesn't have time to repeat herself? Listen the first time buddy. Needless to say, mommy and daddy had to smooth that one over with Lauren, explaining about Santa checking his list twice and whatnot. (I think this pic of her is the little white girl version of "What you talkin' 'bout Willis?")

Several people have asked me what I want for Christmas, and I've really had to think. How awesome is that? I remember a time when I could write down a long list in five minutes at a drop of a hat. I wanted, wanted, wanted. Now I go to the mall and leave empty handed--and this go round it's not not because I can't afford anything. I often don't see anything I really want. Sure part of it is because I haven't been overwhelmed by the styles the last few years, but I like to think that another element of it is a higher level of contentment in general and not needing that momentary rush from buying something and having something new. Of course, I say that as I type on a Sony VAIO laptop in which my nano is currently attached and charging. Hmm. I like to think that I'm evolving and becoming less consumed with material things, but at the same time, perhaps my lack of wanting is because I just have so much more now than I once did. Or perhaps knowing that I can afford things but choosing to save my money instead makes it easier to not want stuff and resist buying things. Or maybe it's because I buy the things that I want and don't have to wait until Christmas time for my parents to buy it for me. Hmm, it's late, and I'm probably making little sense regardless.

Anyway, I like what Epicurus has to say on this subject: "Wealth consists not in having great possessions, but in having few wants."

Regardless of why my wish list seems to be growing shorter each year (and starting to include things like socks), I'm grateful that it is and that I am so blessed to not need any "stuff." This feels like a good place to be.

p.s. I love this song by Pearl Jam too:) "I wish I was a sentimental ornament you hung on the Christmas tree; I wish I was the star that went on top."


Aaron said...

Oh man, that pic cracks me up!

In the past several years, I rarely ask for much, if anything for Christmas. More times than not, I have to spend hours thinking of something to "want" for Christmas. I usually put together a list of items, not because I need them, but because my family will nag me incessantly until I actually give an answer.

With a new house this year, it was easy to come up with small things that I could use. So that's a welcome change to the typical conversation:

"Aaron, what do you want for Christmas?"
"Nothing, really. I don't need anything."
"Uh, I didn't ask what you needed, I asked what you wanted."

What is my problem?

e.b. said...

I think what is important and valuable is the awareness - you have a handle on it and perspective. So if that new i-pod was something you want, you appreciate and respect the need....

Accidentally Me said...

As long as we are quoting Pearl Jam, I always liked "One day you'll see a strange spot in the sky; a human being that was given to fly".


Still just me said...

The Beloved Old Man is besides himeself because he has been at location for work, and hasn't been able to shop. He keeps telling me how sorry he is that he doesn't have a gift for me. It doesn't bother me, in fact, it doesn't bother me at all. All I want for Christmas is peace in my home next year, for all our family drama with my son to be resolved. Only time can give me that.

greenlineboy said...

"Success is getting what you want. Happiness is wanting what you get."

And that may be the cutest little girl I have ever seen.

Ally said...

GLB: I like the quote, and yes, she is the cutest ever.

Still Just Me: I'm certainly praying for that for you and your family.

AM: Pearl Jam rocks! Good quote.

e.b.: I agree that being aware is important--at least a good start. And being grateful for all the things I have too.

Aaron: I've found that it's worth the time to come up with a list...because sometimes my family's gift giving makes me feel like they don't know me at all!

Jordan said...

Same here... I'm getting asked that constantly... I can't really come up with much other than ... oh, I don't know... NOTHING! But if they persist, I can only think of Bath and Body Works... I've been too busy to think about what I would want... so maybe I truly don't want anything.

Flat Coke and Flies said...

Cute picture!!

I wish I was the star that went on top too! Sometimes I'm selfish that way.

ella w. said...

I've been gifted with a bunch of gift certificates. I guess that's what happens when you tell people you don't really want anything...

What did you end up getting for Christmas?