A little bit of festive sparkle

Christmas decorations. Photo: Su Leslie, 2104. Shot with iPhone4, edited with Pixlr Express.

Christmas decorations. Photo: Su Leslie, 2104. Shot with iPhone4, edited with Pixlr Express.

Now that the boy-child is no longer a child (and I may actually have to find another pseudonym for him), the impetus to manufacture Christmas has largely disappeared. We finally dispensed with the tree last year (we are all slightly allergic to pine, and a plastic tree was always out of the question); Christmas cakes are no longer baked as there’s no-one much left to enjoy them, and none of us has the desire to spend hours in carpark traffic jams to visit noisy malls full of s**t we don’t really need. Gifts have become small, personal and often home-made, and I think we are all happier about it. This year I even outsourced the production of the family calendars (gifts for the grandparents) to online photo printing companies here and in the UK.

Christmas decorations. Photo: Su Leslie, 2104. Shot with iPhone4, edited with Pixlr Express.

Christmas decorations. Photo: Su Leslie, 2104. Shot with iPhone4, edited with Pixlr Express.

The main traditions that have remained are the boy-child’s advent calendar (who can say no to a daily dose of chocolate) and my need to have baubles around the place. Without a tree to hang them in, I’ve taken to filling large bowls and platters with tinsel and decorations. Sparkly and colourful, they are enough to remind me that’s it’s Christmas and that I really should go and buy some cards for the persistent souls who still send them to us.

Christmas decorations. Photo: Su Leslie, 2104. Shot with iPhone4, edited with Pixlr Express.

Christmas decorations. Photo: Su Leslie, 2104. Shot with iPhone4, edited with Pixlr Express.

And if I sound like a Grinch; well perhaps I am. Without the anchor of Christianity, this particular holiday has little meaning for me. I hate the appalling commercialization that equates spending with caring; and without extended family around, I can’t even lose myself in the notion of seasonal familial bonding.

I think my little family a trois is secure in the bonds of mutual love and Christmas for us is becoming a time to look outward to see how fortunate we are. One in four children in New Zealand live below the poverty line. For a country that long prided itself on being a place of equality and opportunity, this is utterly disgraceful. This Christmas, as in the past, our family is supporting the Auckland City Mission, which has a long tradition of offering a positive Christmas experience to those who would otherwise have none. The Mission hosts a free Christmas Lunch for around 2,000 people, provides around 3,000 food parcels and distributes about 7,000 gifts to childrenΒ  — as well as providing a huge range of services the other 364 days a year.

So I’m going to enjoy my baubles, and look forward to seeing how innovative my boys (and I) can be in creating gifts out of love rather than cash.

Christmas decorations. Photo: Su Leslie, 2104. Shot with iPhone4, edited with Pixlr Express.

Christmas decorations. Photo: Su Leslie, 2104. Shot with iPhone4, edited with Pixlr Express.

This post was written for Sally’s Phoneography and non-SLR digital photo challenge at Lens and Pens by Sally.

Advertisements

21 thoughts on “A little bit of festive sparkle

  1. I AM WITH YOU !!!! This is a ghastly time of year: the retailers have done nothing but increase, every year, “the appalling commercialization that equates spending with caring”, and it seems that we the people love it. Bummer.
    I think your bowls of sparkles are terrific, Su; and made presents MUST be really appreciated !

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Marvelous commentary on a holiday taken over by business moguls. Still, I like your filling containers and spreading cheer in different ways. We do that too. Image one and three are my favorites, because they combine a bit of abstraction with macro. Happy Photo Challenge.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: Phoneography and Non-SLR Digital Devices Photo Challenge: Macro (Weathered Wall) | Lens and Pens by Sally

  4. Great photos. I am framing my photos with Christmas frames and that is the extent of my decorations. I absolutely hate the ads promoting goods that we don’t need and that people will put on credit when they don’t need them or the debt. My Christmas is about my family and we are just going to chill out. πŸ˜€

    Like

    • Thanks Raewyn. I totally agree about advertising. It is insane if you actually listen to what is being said. I hope you and your family have a safe, peaceful and relaxing Christmas. πŸ™‚ Su.

      Like

  5. Su, your photos (and, I’m sure, bowls/containers) are stunning! I’m Christian, so Christmas is a wonderful time for me. I also love to give gifts and we do that and we’ve always done the “something more” that you describe above. Last year, Bill and I started 2Wheels2Kids (http://2wheels2kids.wordpress.com/) to give bikes and encourage others to give bikes to children whose parents can’t afford them. It makes the holiday even more special!

    janet

    Like

    • Hi Janet; what a wonderful idea 2Wheels2Kids is! A bike is such a fantastic thing to have; liberating, fun, healthy and useful all in one. I remember the bikes of my childhood as the vehicles of my independence and mourn that so many kids today don’t or can’t share in that. Merry Christmas to you and your family. Su.

      Like

  6. Your pictures are so beautiful. I love the rich jewel tones and sparkles of the holidays.

    I think a lot of unhappiness at Christmas stems from an unrealistic expectation of what Christmas should be created by marketers and movie makers. Reality can’t compete with that.

    Like

    • Thank you so much! I think you are right; we are so bombarded with images of big happy families, and maybe I’m just odd, but I don’t know any families like that. Most find Christmas very stressful for one reason or another. Cheers, Su.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Totally! I feel like the retail sector just moves from one holiday to another. They take down the Christmas decorations and put out the Valentines Day stuff; take that down and out with the Easter Eggs. It totally debases the holidays themselves. I also enjoy the beauty, I just don’t need months of it πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s