Do a different Christmas exchange


Look at this haul!

It’s December and that means I am upping my coziness game times a bajillion. Around here in Casa del Bungalowville it’s been all about hot pots of tea and books in front of the fireplace. We’ve been super busy as well, as December is a whirlwind between the holidays and my birthday which heads into the New Year and finally culminates with my brother and fathers birthday.

Despite being mobility-challenged and saying no to events more times than not, there are some holiday traditions that I am not willing to give up, like our Pervy Christmas Exchange. But before I start into this year’s festivities, a little background is in order.

About 10 years ago my friend Mez and I had a conversation about starting a friend’s gift exchange. It was an excuse to pick names, get us all together and hang out all while enjoying food and drink. So nothing out of the ordinary on that front, most people have Christmas Kringle exchanges with their friends during the holiday season. However, after two years of exchanging gifts (the second of which, I was pregnant with the Bean) one of the more brilliant friends amongst us said, “You know, we are all adults with jobs and can buy ourselves whatever we want. Instead of buying each other gifts for keepsies, we should instead buy a gift that reminds you of that person’s childhood self. We will still eat, drink, & be merry but instead of keeping the gift, we will donate it to Toy Mountain.”

Before the opening

And the Pervs did discuss this idea amongst themselves and they thought it was good.

So now every year we still draw names and have a party, and the fun is in the guessing why someone has chosen that gift for you, and who drew your name that year but the gift eventually finds itself in the hands of a child who may not have something under the tree otherwise. It’s a ridiculously fun time where we laugh our faces off and have a lovely get together with friends but instead of going home with one more widget, the host assembles all the gifts and drops them off at Toy Mountain the next day.

In my view, this is win-win. Most adults don’t need more crap but every kid who who believes in Santa should have something to open on Christmas day. We have often also contacted Toy Mountain to see which age groups are lacking toys and so we’ll aim to pick up things for those groups. On the off chance someone goes over our $50 limit, you can always use the battle cry, “BUT IT’S FOR THE KIDS!”

The chaos!

People have come and gone over the years, and we’ve added some new Pervs due to marriage and new friendships but our annual party remains the same. Of course, our 4am ragers have turned into a more perfunctory midnight turn in, but the sentiment remains the same: have a great Christmas celebration that benefits our community. This year marks 10 years of our annual Pervy Christmas ritual and I wouldn’t miss it for the world.

I’m not, not playing with this toy

I’d love to hear about your fun holiday rituals with friends or family, let me know!