“Christmas is weird – what other time of year do you sit in front of a dead tree, eating candy out of a sock?”
When I read that humorous quote I thought, how true it is that Christmas can be a really weird time of year. On what other morning, such as on Christmas day, in preparation for the dreaded lunch, can you imagine several million people across the world, willingly sticking their hands up a dead bird’s bottom, stuffing it with something you would never eat on its own?
Now while the words ‘dreaded’ and ‘Christmas lunch’ may not go hand in hand for everybody, the fact is that for probably half of the population, it can be an uncom-fortable, tedious and sometimes hideously awful time. For couples, the chances of having a terrible Christmas double as they oftentimes have to juggle functions with two very different in-law families, who usually put pressure on them to attend their own obviously more important festivities, in preference to the other family. I shudder to imagine
the results when alcohol is thrown in.
For some families the horrors of Christmas extends into gift-giving. In fact, I can recall the year I received five boxes of chocolates, four of which were identical. Obviously the supermarket had been having a big sale on chocolates just before Christmas.
While we’re on the subject of unimaginative gifts, at what other time is it more evident that your family or partner is so completely clueless about you? If I put together every single candle I’ve received in the past decade, I’d need the local fire brigade on standby if I decide to light them all at once.
When I was growing up, we girls were told that it was bad manners to throw away gifts, no matter how revolting or tacky they were. Even now, I may have a gift or two floating around on a dusty shelf somewhere, out of a sense of obligation. I’m hoping that they will accidentally get knocked down and broken, or sucked into an inter-dimensional vortex.
For most of us, Christmas is a test of our personal safe-gift
recognition ability: “Will these Australian flag underwear be too radical for Grandad, and would a lifetime’s supply of cotton buds be overdoing it for Mum?”
Sometimes though, I wonder if certain family members are taking part in an experiment called:
“What is the worst possible gift that I can give that makes it look like I care?”
On several occasions, I’ve been on the receiving end of such atrocious gifts that I had to throw them straight into the bin rather than passing them onto a local charity – they were too horrendous to inflict on an unprepared and unsuspecting public through their charity store.
I reflect on the possibility sometimes that certain family members are simply having fun at my expense, and enjoying the look on my face as I struggle to pretend that their gift is precisely what I was hoping for:
“Yes, I will take great delight in spraying myself liberally from the industrial sized bottle of “Eau de Wheelie-Bin.” Thank you cousin Edwina.”
SPAG Magazine, it’s staff and volunteers do not profit from promoting Christian organisations which form a part of our regular articles and promotions. This includes Voice of the Martyrs, Open Doors, Samaritan’s Purse (most usually Operation Christmas Child),Christian Today (Australia), and Diduno (Australia). The cartoons we share were paid for by SPAG Magazine’s Editor, Vicki Nunn as we presently have insufficient funds to cover their cost. We occasionally share articles about Christian and humanitarian organisations, churches and/or denominations and their work, and our purpose in doing so is to provide information and insights to our readers, and to encourage them to particularly pray for these ministries, many of which provide assistance to those in need. If they should so desire, our readers may choose to financially support them. Any person and/or organisation that pays to promote or advertise their business through SPAG Magazine, will be identified as a ‘Paid Sponsor.’
SPAG Magazine, it’s staff and volunteers are as yet unpaid for their hard work, skills and contributions, although we hope that in the near future we will obtain sufficient financial support through which we can ensure our costs are met and our people are recompensed for their valuable work.
Any promotions, articles and information shared through SPAG Magazine, may not necessarily reflect exactly the individual beliefs and convictions of our staff members and volunteers, nor of our readers. We understand that an article may cause concern or possibly even offence to some Christian readers, but that is not our intention. Our purpose is to inspire, challenge, and encourage Christian adults in their walk, and to honour and exalt God. If a reader has feedback of any kind, we would be happy to receive it. Just as we will pray for guidance and wisdom should it prove a contentious topic with a reader, we ask that our reader will do the same.
While we make an attempt to ensure that the organisations that we promote are legitimate, SPAG Magazine, it’s staff and volunteers are not responsible for any organisation, individual or group that we promote whose intentions may be to deliberately provide false or misleading information with the aim of perhaps profiting by such deception, or for reasons unknown to us. If an individual or group who reads SPAG Magazine wishes to financially support a person or organisation, that is shared in SPAG Magazine, we encourage our readers to pray for and research the organisation themselves, and if uncertain, to desist from providing any financial or other support to the individual or organisation.
Our policy when it comes to advertising, articles, promotions and other items provided through SPAG Magazine, is that any organisation or person who submits a request to sponsor or promote a business, organisation or event etc in SPAG Magazine or submits an article, photo or anything else for consideration, does so on the understanding and agreement that neither their business, their products, article or any type of promotion will conflict with our Bible-based Christian ethics and convictions nor shall it cause offence to Christians regarding their beliefs. Additionally, the contributor accepts all legal and other responsibilities for their submission for publication, should their contribution not belong to them or is not correctly attributed. If a reader, an individual or organisation believes that an article, a photo or other item shared in SPAG Magazine is in breach of copyright etc, we urge the concerned party to contact us as soon as possible.