Christmas, Living in New Zealand

Christmas, or lack thereof

It’s less than 5 days till Christmas here in NZ and you know what?  I have yet to buy a single Christmas card, put out a single Christmas decoration, wrap (or even buy) a single Christmas present for the immediate family, and I’m not all that stressed out about it.

Christmas feels different over here.  It’s not about trees and lights and flash gifts.  Well, perhaps it is for some people, but not most of the people that we’ve met.  It’s getting together with family, relaxing, sharing a meal, perhaps going to the beach, and giving loved ones some gifts.  There isn’t the same amount of hoopla as what we’re used to in the US, and I’m fine with that.

I used to love decorating our various homes when were Stateside – I had boxes full of decorations.  I still have some of those decorations (the ones that have a meaning attached to them) but most have been sold or donated.  Joe’s first Christmas was in the US and it was special to see him with family and others, to have him visit Santa Claus in my hometown, and to watch his eyes light up as he soaked in all of the twinkling lights and sparkly decorations.

I don’t know.  Maybe part of it is being pregnant and coming off a long stretch of travel.  Chris and I are going shopping for presents this weekend.  We’ve already agreed not to exchange gifts with one another.  This is always a jam-packed week and a half for us: our anniversary, then my birthday 5 days after that, and then Christmas 2 days after my birthday.  In a way, we’ve already given one another our gifts – travels around the world, a new camera lens, a new video camera, signing up for or extending ESPN sports packages, etc., etc.

My big goal for this year is to just relax – to have an easy, tasty meal, take a trip to the beach for a few hours, and enjoy spending time with the ones I love.  Christmas decorations are optional.  I know that will change as Joe gets older, but for now, it’s more than enough.

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4 thoughts on “Christmas, or lack thereof

  1. Hope you had a lovely birthday! I do like how low key NZ is though I do enjoy Christmas decorations or trees when I see them in town. A few weekends ago Santa cruised down Lambton Quay in a vintage convertible car! What a sight!

  2. I’ve been here for 6 years and I still don’t totally get in the ‘Christmas spirit’. In trying to adapt, we did things differently to try to be holly-jolly…when the kids were younger we hid pressies in the garden, which was pretty fun. But, now I look forward to picnics on the beach and, of course, making sure I send out Christmas emails with a tree on the beach!

  3. I think sometimes we get so lost in the hustle and the bustle of what the holidays are “supposed” to be about [like decorating, running around like crazy, hanging lights, etc], that we forget that the most important memory is just spending time with our families.
    Ya know, things have been crazy since Ari was born. And I know other new mommy bloggers have done holiday cards, decorated, etc; And I’ve decided not to do that to myself. I know that doing that will just stress me out, for the sake of ‘appearances.’ And I just don’t want to be that dishonest with myself or anyone for that matter. Sometimes doing all of that can be a serious drag. So I’m not. 🙂 LOL

  4. sounds like a great plan to me 🙂 Christmas in winter is kinda nice (although the one winter Christmas I did have, there was no snow sadly) but New Years belongs in summer in my record, without a doubt 🙂

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