Post # 1
Mostly just a rant but I do need some advice on how to approach this next Christmas.
DH and I live in a larger city while our family and friends do not. They’re about an hour away from us and they’re about a half hour away from decent shopping but not to the extent of the shopping we have here.
Every Christmas, DH and I get our shopping done and wrapped before December (usually mid to late November) to beat the crowds. Yet every single year our family and friends badger us to pick things up for them, go get this, can you pick that up at ___? I need you to get me ___. It’s suuuper frustrating for me. They make a couple of trips per Christmas to do some shopping yet they always manage to need something else that we have to get for them. It’s the middle of December and requests are still coming in! Oh yeah… I also hear this a lot…”Might as well wrap it for me too” I don’t mind doing it for my dad. He works non stop and since I was old enough I’ve been wrapping his gifts for my mom. But to be doing it for 10 people is hard.
I really wouldn’t mind getting these things for them if a) they gave us the money upfront and b) if it was before December.
My question is would it be out of line for me to ask that next year those criteria (a and b) are met? Or should I just suck it up and continue to run around for them in the middle of December?
Oh and the big question… am I overreacting?
Post # 3
no I think you have every right to ask that next year it be different. That would be super frustrating to me and frankly impossible with all the baking I do but while your out would you mind picking me up some of those shout color catcher sheets so I can wash the new quilt I made. I cant find them in our rinkydink town. Thanks! LOL jk
Post # 4
@Mrs. Mustang: My mom is the you in our family. She had to pretend to be busy after November so it would stop. Now people think to ask earlier in the year
Post # 5
It is not unreasonable at all. If I were you though I wouldn’t just ask for those criteria to be met but stop doing it at all. They are adults and can do their own F*ing shopping! Sorry had a rough day.
Post # 6
If you don’t want to do the shopping, just tell them it’s not possible any more and leave it at that. You don’t have to even give them an excuse.
If you’re willing to do it, but only before December, tell them you don’t want to go to the shopping centers that late because it’s too crazy to deal with. And they need to pay you first–for the items they want and compensation for your gas.
As for the wrapping, uh-uh, just NO. You’ve already done them enough favors if you’ve gone shopping.
Post # 7
by doing it in the past you’re telling them its ok. just say you don’t have time to wrap and next year please give you a heads up. that must be frustrating!
Post # 8
I would introduce them to the amazing world of online shopping!
Post # 9
Thanks for all your advice! Now that I know I’m on the right track it’s time to come up with how to approach it. I’m hopefully going to be working next year so I know I won’t be as free.
@bella128: I totally agree… they obviously aren’t doing this to hurt me or frustrate me… they think it’s perfectly ok because I haven’t voiced my problem to them before.
Post # 10
Being from NJ where there is a mall on almost every corner I can’t fathom this lol but I have a tendancy to wind up with my Dad’s shopping list for my Mom (thankfully haven’t had to buy my own gift lol) He is always upfront about what he’s willing to spend and gives me the money to spend, but it’s not always before December (in fact most times it’s a day or two before the event… like rushing out on the first night of Chanukkah for the gift for the 2nd night this year lol) I don’t think you’re overreacting, it’s stressful to head into the crowds at the mall, fight for parking, traffic, etc. You’re doing them a service and they should appreciate you for it and be considerate!
Post # 11
@missrobots: You beat me to it!! 🙂 I used to live in a major city and LOVED having all of my favorite stores nearby. After marrying my DH and having to relocate, I now live in a very rural area of a different state, and I have to make almost an hour-long round trip just to reach a mall, not to mention the fact that all of my favorite stores now require a three-to-six hour round trip (depending on the store) to reach, so I seldom have the opportunity to shop there in person.
I never used to like to shop online or pay shipping, but I do a decent amount of online shopping now, and I always try to wait for sales or free shipping or both. 🙂
Post # 12
Yikes that is very generous of you and I agree that you should ask for money and list upfront early next year.
BTW who asks you to shop for them other than your parents and haven’t they heard of online shopping? A lot of stores have shipping deals around the holidays!
Post # 13
If they already know exactly what it is they want you to pick up (and wrap!), they can order it online. Next time you get that request, say “I don’t have time, but I bet you can find it on Amazon.com!”
Post # 14
@Mrs. Mustang: no you aren’t over reacting. And no those requests won’t be out of line. I would simply send an email out like early november next year and say
“as you all know xmas is quickly approaching! I don’t mind picking things up for people as I have done in past years, since shopping is more accessible in our area. However, I have a few simple requests that would really really help me out 🙂 . Please make sure you can give usme the funds in hand prior to us going to buy something. I would love to cover everything up front but it’s just not doable for us this year. Also, I won’t be doing any shopping like this in the month of december because with our schedules and the busy holiday season it’s just not something we can handle this year. So any requests should be sent to me before the end of the month (november). I do hope you all understand!thanks!”
I would have no shame doing this at all! 🙂
Post # 15
You are right!!!! Tell them if they want you to do the shopping they should tell you in Sept or Nov. because you dont like going into the store during the rush. You dont have money to spend when they could have given you the money in advance. It is only fair and respectful to not take advantage of your kindness.