Last minute Christmas shopping solutions…..

This is the weekend before Christmas and when most of us should be relaxing the reality for most of it is pure craziness. I imagine Panhandle Rancher sitting in front of a fire, reading a book, just enjoying being alive. I envy that. My wife is working on some craft projects she has been doing selling online to make extra money.┬áThe kids are sleeping in till noontime since they are out of school. My oldest – Jonathan – just failed his American History exam yesterday and likely the class. MY KID FAILED AMERICAN HISTORY!!

But wait…..’tis the season to be merry. Right?

Time is ticking down and if Christmas shopping is not complete don’t stress out. There IS time. Here are a few ideas:

  • If shopping for someone you are close to – a spouse, parent, grandparent, or son or daughter – write them a letter. Tell them about special memories you have of them and how glad you are to have them in your life. How I wish I had received something like this from either one of my parents. This would likely mean more than anything to them.
  • A similar idea as above is to use modern technology to put together a video for that special person. You do not have to be a multimedia guru to accomplish this. Most any laptop, tablet, or smartphone has the software/app to add pictures, words, and music to create a meaningful masterpiece.
  • Amazon has most anything you can imagine to complete your Christmas shopping – with extremely fast shipping. I just ordered a tiny 32gb USB drive for my Chromebook and it will be delivered on Sunday. If you are a Prime member there is free 2-day shipping as well as discounted overnight shipping. Expedited shipping for non-Prime members is available as well.
  • For that special someone – a candlelit dinner for two serving the others favorite meal, massage,……..etc. I wouldn’t mind that at all.

candle-light-dinner (1)

  • Gift cards are always a decent gift. The receiver can go pick out what they want. Amazon even offers gift certificates and they and be delivered via email.
  • If you have friends with kids give them a coupon for free babysitting.


Hopefully these few ideas will be of some help. Regardless of all the presents, get togethers, and sales at the stores – let’s remember the true meaning of Christmas.




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  1. Rourke-you have great examples of excellent gifts giving from the heart which is what Christmas is all about.I try to make a gift do double duty.Ex. buying an ornament that donates money to plant trees (in a wild fire area) or
    a donation to a persons favorite charity as well as gifts of time and service as you mentioned.A photo album or photo on a mug etc.Yes, I would have loved to have received a letter from my Mom and Dad before they passed.
    Once our daughter and son did a candlelight dinner for us for an anniversary and it was fantastic!!!
    Try not to worry about your son with history.Maybe he can learn history from videos . My husband loves history .I can tolerate it.
    So PR are you by the fire reading a book? We had a guest visit from NYC and she said I imagine you all just sit by this woodstove in the winter and sip hot chocolate.(we might try that this year-grin!when I am not cleaning the woodstove and hauling in wood) I said to her nice thought thats like imagining people in the city visit museums every weekend. Arlene

  2. Thanks for thinking of me Rourke. We’re about to make the hour’s trek to church but I have a moment awaiting the wife.

    Regarding history, alas it was probably revisionist anyway. I never cared much for history until out of college, now that I’ve lived through so much I wish I had payed better attention in world history. Of course geography other than continental was a waste. Remember Bombay? Persia? Peking?

    A serious home study in US history might be of value next semester, especially focusing on how the past has shaped our present.

    Merry Christmas to all..


  3. Arlene, the wife and I indeed sat by the fire last night and enjoyed a cup of that hot chocolate replete with marsh mellons. I like to add a touch of creme to the hot milk/chocolate mix as it makes for a delightful thick almost milkshake like specific gravity.

    When cold, I like to read by the light of an Aladdin Lamp (the modern tall chimney kind). It adds heat to the room and the light is such a wonderful white/yellow. Of course when it’s really cold, I retire under the covers with my backlight kindle. Nothing better to read with as I no longer need a headlamp. Seriously, our wood fired furnace and fireplace keeps us just as warm as we wish with the added bonus of the joy of cutting, splitting, and stacking the wood in the summer keeping us toasty then as well.

    I just remarked to a friend earlier on line that the cattle are lowing, the Democrat donkey braying for a handout, the horses chuffing, and the dogs curled up by the fire. What could be better?


  4. History….never enjoyed it in school but in the past 10-20 years i found historical fiction to add the missing link that not only made learning actual history enjoyable, but more real and understandable. Bodie and Brock Thoene have over 45 meticulously researched
    books available spanning Biblical times to pre/post WWII to early American history. I have learned more history reading on my own AND enjoyed it than i ever did in a classroom. Now that’s not to say school isn’t good but i needed that connection to”get it.”
    Right now i am finishing up”Fifth Seal”(it is about the birth of Christ,)which has made the Christmas story expand into dimensions i had never considered. Makes this Christmas just a bit more special for me.
    Hope your son finds what he needs to”get it.”

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