Last year at this time, I was grouchy and uncharitable. Unusual for me, because I quite enjoy gift shopping, provided I don't have to do it with the holiday mob or on short notice.
I learned my lesson last year; namely not to depend on anyone else coming through on gifts for the boys. Instead, I have been collecting small goodies for months. It's more appealing to have a stash of things for Hart's Hanukkah arrival, instead of a stash of pent-up aggravation with him as I did a year ago.
The holiday cheer seems to be catching. Jeff got his dad a BMW-themed gift and suggested a well-needed pair of gloves as a present for his beloved respite worker. He was thrilled with the guitar-themed T-shirt I purchased for his guitar instructor. He chose an elephant pop-up book to buy for Hart.
I'm pleased that Jeff has learned the joy of giving to others. He hasn't completely changed his old ways; I can overhear his phone conversations as he demands particular cars as gifts from Hart. This is dismaying, I explain, since Hart doesn't have the means or the transportation to shop, as we do.
Also, this year I won't be wrangling both boys at the same time. That was a recipe for holiday ill-will. There has been some secret phone giggling between the boys. I wonder if they got anything for me.