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Hot Mess Mom » Dear Diary, Drunk Blogging, Family, Ramblings, Stellar Parenting Advice, Things that are NOT awesome, Uncategorized, Ways I know I'm failing as a parent » I will NOT cave. And I hate the Joneses

I will NOT cave. And I hate the Joneses


Every year….every fracking year..   I make my Christmas list (in Excel).  I purchase the desired items.  I color code by child/ order/ and delivery.  I spend too much money.   Every year.

My boys are only permitted to ask Santa for 3 things.   When I first met Muffy years ago, before we were friends, she told me that her kids got only 3 gifts each for Christmas.  Our kids were really young..   “Only three??” I asked incredulously.  “Yup.. I tell them If it was good enough for Jesus, it’s good enough for you”.     I loved that and incorporated it into my “Santa letter” plan.

So.. every year, I am methodical about my purchases.  They each have the exact same number of gifts under the tree and, on December 1st, when my shopping is completed, I am thrilled with my purchases and know it will be the best Christmas ever.

And then, weeks later,  I wrap.  And my pile of gifts looks measly.  My boys are older now..  the shit they want is expensive.  And SMALL!   I spend more now than I did when they were younger, but the gift pile looks pitiful.  Sooo.. every year.. after I wrap…  I run around like a dick buying crap just there is more stuff to wrap and the piles are bigger.

Tonight I wrapped.  They piles are small.

Guess what?   FUCK THAT!  Fuck it.   It’s bullshit.  My boys are very blessed… luckier than most.  I WILL NOT go spend an extra hundred or two on stupid shit that will be in garbage by January 1st just so their “pile” appears bigger.   I’m not going to do it!  I’m taking a stand (against myself) and I’m not going to cave!  I WILL NOT cave!  I will not keep up with the Joneses!!  I hate the fucking Joneses!   And Mr. Jones is probably diddling his secretary anyway, and THAT’s why he has a huge pile under his tree…  the Joneses are compensating !!

I have 3 boys…at some point I have to teach them that size doesn’t matter.   I chose to start on Christmas morning :)   They are getting some crazy good shit this year..   crazy good….  But small.  And all total they each have 5 gifts.  I’ve spent the past month collecting gifts and raising money for 9 local needy families to have Christmas.   I busted my ass.  I bullied people for donations.  Every single child in each of those families will have WAY more than 5 gifts under their tree..  and they need it.  My boys don’t.  They don’t need one more fucking Lego or Beyblade or Transformer.  They have bikes and scooters and roller blades and footballs and basketballs and a trampoline.  They have fucking stilts..  STILTS!  It’s 2012 and my goofy ass kids have stilts! And a pogo stick!!!  And a Wii, and an iPad and stupid ass video games and remote control helicopters.  Did I mention Legos?  Not another Lego will EVER cross the threshold of Chez HMM.  (Until we go to Legoland again for someone’s birthday.. but I digress)

So..  in 7 days.. my boys will wake up, run to the living room and see that Santa came.  And they will be thrilled!  Then they’ll check to see that he ate the cookies and run outside to see if the reindeer ate the carrots.  Then they will come back inside and take stock of their gift piles.  And they won’t say it aloud, but I know they will think.. “WTF?.. that’s a fucking small pile!! Really Santa?? The fiscal cliff has you scared too??  You don’t have a hair on your ass, you overgrown elf!! “...   But they won’t say it.   And they will open their gifts.. and realize that their small gifts are actually really big gifts…. and I will be so damn happy that I didn’t go stock up on extra shit at Marshall’s.

The End.   (except for if any one of those kids complains about not enough stuff to open, I will cut a mother fucker.)  Merry Christmas.

Oh, and also.. I drink when I wrap.. don’t judge the grammar or spelling.  Or venom.  Cuz judging is not nice ;)

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Filed under: Dear Diary, Drunk Blogging, Family, Ramblings, Stellar Parenting Advice, Things that are NOT awesome, Uncategorized, Ways I know I'm failing as a parent



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57 Responses to "I will NOT cave. And I hate the Joneses"

  1. traci amberbride says:

    i love you. that is all. Happy Holidays!

  2. Kris says:

    U need to be #1 after this…. Lmao! Santa afraid of the fiscal cliff! Genius!!!
    (ps just bought 4 pairs of shoes online from DSW… I cheated on Piperlime)

  3. Kirstyn says:


  4. Jen says:

    Love it. My sentiments exactly.

  5. Lisa says:

    Great post! We all need to follow this plan!

  6. Brilliant :) Ever since my oldest (now 15) was about 3, we’ve done the three gift thing too. He had a fit after opening his 20 presents and had to be sent to his room on Christmas. So now it’s pretty much all both my boys have ever known. Of course, they also get stockings and one or two things from Santa (the 3 are from us parents). Between that and gifts from family they really do get a nice Christmas, and you’re right, our kids have everything they need and pretty much everything else, too. (I feel the same way about Legos!)Stay strong and they will know what to expect each year, and be happy with it.

  7. Kelly says:

    You’re doing it right. Really.

  8. Santa Hater says:

    I wish I had someone to tell me shit like this before I had kids. I just didn’t know that Santa could be limited to just a few gifts. Santa was very generous to me when I was a child (likely compensating for his and Mrs. Claus’ alcoholism :-) and I just thought that I had to do the same for my kids.
    Now its too late. My kids are old and young and inbetween. I don’t know how to suddenly say, “sorry, chirrens, Santa is only bringing you one big gift this year”. Its not too late, I have until Christmas Eve to figure it out. Any ideas?
    Every year I get pissed off because Santa gets all of the credit for all of my hard work and money spent. Maybe this year we will wrap all but one gift and make them from us, and their big expensive gift will stay unwrapped and from Santa? That will set the pace for future years.
    You’ve given me a challenge, HMM. Now help me with a solution.

  9. Joy says:

    LOVE THIS! I tried using the 3 gift thing but my hubby likes to shop – seriously – it’s all him. I put my foot down this year since we’re still paying medical bills. And we’re good! Seriously good!!! And I am on the no extra shit just fill up the pile train. Can I get a whooot whooot!

  10. krissylou says:

    My husband and I agree on one bigger thing that both of our boys will get for Christmas. The problem is that we each proceed to buy other, smaller things for the kids without letting the other one know. We wrapped gifts last weekend – Sweet baby Jesus, what the hell is all this crap?? They have WAY TOO MUCH. They aren’t all expensive things, but still. It’s ridiculous. Need the 3-gift rule!

  11. FnJerzeeGrrl says:

    Dude, just put the shit in bigger boxes!

    1. Hot Mess Mom says:

      omg.. you are a god-damned GENIUS!!! WELL PLAYED!! I am totally doing that.. for realz.

      1. Allison says:

        The small gift, wrapped, in a medium box, wrapped, in a big box, wrapped, in a huge box…also wrapped. :) Yup. I’m evil like that. My aunt once had all of her gifts canned…yup, canned. Her last gift? An electric can opener. :)

  12. Karen Walker's Friend says:

    The fiscal cliff is a lot like the one in the roadrunner cartoons. As long as you dont look down, you can keep running off it.

  13. Rosemary says:

    Merry Christmas! You expressed it so f-ing perfectly.

  14. LOVE! I am trying to show restraint as well. We have a pretty big age gap in kiddos (18,9,7 and 4) One thing for the 18 year old is over 300 but 300 looks like a whole lot of age 4 gifts.
    Carrie from Just Mildly Medicated

  15. Julie says:

    Hello we share a brain!!!

    I’ve always told my 3 boys that Santa brings ONLY ONE GIFT, and that the rest are from mommy and daddy. They’ve recently brought up the fact that many of their friends get all of their presents from Santa. I had to pull some epic bullshit outta my ass, double-quick.

    So I explained that, much like the mall santas work for the big man, mommies and daddies can choose to put Santa’s name on their gifts, or give them as themselves. It’s a choice every mommy & daddy are allowed to make when they are blessed with a baby. We chose to use our own names, beacuse we felt like it was important for our kids to know that mommy & daddy give gifts too, and that Santa is one dude for like, 3 billion kids, so one toy is quite enough, no matter how many elves he’s got working the sweat shop.

    They seemed to ‘get’ that explanation. Of course, now they are talking about the girl down the street who doesn’t believe in Santa OR God & Jesus, but she gets tons of presents anyway. Sheesh! I almost wish I could freeze them at 3 or 4 and stop the flipping doubt!

    PS – I drink when I wrap too. Otherwise I’d cry every time I wrapped another damn Lego, Beyblade, and Transformer (all of which are under the tree, AGAIN, this year).

  16. Janelle says:

    You are saving my sanity by making me realize that there are other mothers out there whose inner voice includes profuse belligerency and snark, even when it pertains to her own children. God bless you. Thank you for not writing hokey crap that we all know is a very skewed vision of life. I was seriously feeling bad about myself (too much time on pinterest seeing way cooler stuff other moms do and reading nerdy quotes about the sainthood of mothering) but after finding you, I feel GREAT!! :) Keep up the awesomeness…and please, since I am pregnant, have a cocktail for me! In fact, have 3. AT minimum, 3.

    1. Hot Mess Mom says:

      Done!!! And it’s only 3:30 ;)

  17. Marie LePit says:

    For Children 4 to 9 years old check out An adorable story and a draw along book to keep for them when they grow up. So they can laugh at themselves (with you).

  18. Miranda says:

    That’s awesome! Not all parents reliaze how
    Fortunate their children are. My kiddos are getting
    One gift and not a big gift, it breaks my heart.
    But I know they will show nothing but grateful ness

  19. Natasha says:

    My oldest of 4 kids is 11…my only boy…his list consisted of an iPod touch and multiple Xbox games. he got everything on his list! I was the same way in previous years. Excel list and all. So when I realized his pike was 1) way more expensive than anyone else’s and 2) like 6inches by 8 inches I got creative. Found random boxes around my house. Xbox game in huge box? Yes please. Xbox game in empty panty liner box? Hysterically laughing…yes please!!! His pile looks way more to my liking now :)

    1. Hot Mess Mom says:

      I’m ALL OVER THIS! Seriously. I’m generally pretty creative.. don’t know why I didn’t think of this before…

      Oh wait.. shit! ALL of our gifts on Christmas morning are from Santa.. ALL OF THEM.
      Mom and Dad are ball busters who make the kids scavenger hunt for gifts on their bdays and trick with large boxes.. Santa has never done that before. will it give me away?? My boys are at that “teetering” age.. don’t want to give them ANY REASON to stop believing..

  20. Natasha says:

    It was always quantity vs quality when they were younger but now it opposite. So I has to get creative!

  21. Kayla says:

    LMFAO! Awesome! My kids (two boys, 1 year old and a 4 year old) only have 2 gifts from us – one from Santa and 1 from mom and dad. The rest of my huge family buys them everything else, even though I BEG them to just give the kids money or even a savings bond (yeah right). We’re the mean, heartless parents that say “oh well” and are sticking to it. Luckily my 4 year old starts crying because opening more than 3 gifts is too much for him lol. By the way, his present from Santa is a pogo stick lol. Funny you mentioned it. ;)

  22. lol @ teaching them size doesn’t matter.

  23. thebev says:

    Ok where to start….size doesn’t matter is hysterical to be teaching BOYS that is just wrong!
    And I’m so happy to know that I’m not the only pile judgeing Mom who buys useless shit to make it bigger. So I will take the I will not cave pact with you and just say FUCK IT!

  24. Linda says:

    Holt Shanizzle!!! I could barely understand that outburst!!!! But I LOVE it!

  25. joe dee says:

    excuse me stewardess, i speak jive: through organization, thrift and proper planning I manage to make christmas very nice for my progeny. alas, as they mature, their tastes change which has created and inversely proportional relationship between the size of the gift and the costs. golly, what to do, this is a pickle. perhaps additional libations will help and i welcome any suggestions form you fine young ladies and gentlemen. werd.

    1. Hot Mess Mom says:

      You’re getting a koozie just for effort and dumbassery. MSG me ur addy

  26. Stacey says:

    Straight up, bitches and ho’s! Well put momma!

  27. tfreel says:

    WTF?? LOST CONFUSED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  28. leah pv says:

    I better get a koozie are you are dead to me. DEAD TO ME.

    1. Hot Mess Mom says:

      lol! i don’t know what you are referring to?? ;)

  29. leah pv says:

    Give me the koozie and no one gets hurt.

  30. Shelli says:

    What the…? What happened to your website? I need a translation.

    1. Hot Mess Mom says:

      U dont speak snoop dog?? ( this is just a funny link– the reg post is at hot mess mom ;)

  31. Trish B says:

    Ok – if they still believe in Santa – it’s hard to use random boxes to make the presents look bigger. I had to do some creative stuff – stuff Santa might have around his workshop. For one, i taped two solo cups together and put a gift card inside. For another, i took an empty graham cracker box and put the xbox game in there. I didn’t want to reuse any of the boxes they have seen other toys and household stuff in.

  32. Terri says:

    Wow! You have totally de- stressed my holiday. This is my first time reading your blog. I am a newly single mom- sucks right now. But I like the three gift idea. My children have more than they need. Three gifts are perfect!’


    Your new #1 Fan!!!

  33. Marie says:

    I cracked up at this post. I’m a “good enough mom” but say I am a “hot mess” all the time. Blogging virgin I am for sure but trying. I do have a day job as a special needs teacher. Thanks for the honesty and humor. I will definately keep reading.

    Best to you,

  34. Alicia says:

    I found your blog through a Pinterest pin of a water bottle that said “this might be vodka”. You had me at that. Then I read this post and had to comment. We have 5 children ages 1-17 and they each received one gift from mom and dad for Christmas. We also let Santa leave one gift for the littles. We are taking all of them to Hawaii for a week in February. We need new carpeting, windows, kitchen island, and furniture. I think you and I would be friends. :) looking forward to reading your blog in a regular basis!

    1. Hot Mess Mom says:

      YOU… My new friend… would like THIS…
      and thanks for being here.. we are all pretty cool.. ;) ( with a few exceptions :)

  35. Exactly! Down with the Joneses. (Joneses looks really weird, doesn’t it?)

  36. Briana says:

    Found your blog today. Think we might have been raised in the same barn. I appreciate your sense of humor and enjoy tequila in my OJ from time to time too. Those are the days we walk to school. :)

    Anyways, a thought on this post, I decided to keep up with the Joneses(in our case a mom group I met through my kids school) a few years ago. Thankfully, the moms taught me the 4 gift idea. Something to wear, something to read, something you want, something you need. In our house, the something you want is the 1 gift from Santa, the other three are from mom & dad. Christmas is much less expensive then when I used to give in to my crazy shopping tendencies.

    My oldest sometimes comments on when she remembers “huge piles” of presents under the tree when she was younger, but the others have never known anything else. I know I am much less stressed now.

  37. Linda says:

    You are frickin’ hilarious! Loved the post–even if it was written in a drunken stupor. ;)

  38. mommaof2 says:

    Bahahaha! I love this and can’t wait to read more of you blog!!

  39. Donna says:

    I just stumbled on your blog via Pinterest and I absolutely LOVE it! I am convinced you are a clone of me…the way I talk..think and act….!!!!! Looking forward to sitting down with a drink tonight and reading EVERY friggin blog on this page and laughing my ass off!!!!!!!!!!!!! TGIF!!! PS – My eyes are tearing as I sit here at work reading and having to hold in my laughter! LOVE IT!

  40. Shell says:

    I just found your blog today and I can’t stop reading it. You are hilarious! Thank you for brightening my day (and many more days ahead). I love your sarcastic and awesome sense of humor!

  41. Karen says:

    Hahaha…I do the same thing! My kids are spoiled. I also said fuck it this year. And you know what, my kids were pretty darn happy anyway. You deserve an award for this post lol LMAO

  42. Jennifer says:

    I’ve got to flag this one for next christmas!

  43. Kristian says:

    OMG! I haven’t laughed so hard in months. I almost peed my pants. Thanks!

  44. cate says:

    I know my comment is late, since it is now March, but I recently found your blog and am loving going backwards through it and laughing my butt off. I just had to write in and tell you that this past Christmas I had to figure out how to wrap a pound of beef..which was on my son’s christmas list. They are too funny..

  45. sabrina baker says:

    I recently started following your fb page & clicked on a link to your blog page. I just gotta day… I’M TOTALLY IN LOVE with you! keep up the good work & I hope you’re outta trouble soon!!

  46. Pancakes71 says:

    I always tell my kids…” You get what you get and you don’t get upset!” Love the blog and the FB page. Keep being your bad ass self!

  47. Ina says:

    I have been in a funk and not in the Christmas spirit ATALL … thanks for the laugh! I’ll have some Christmas spirits this evening after reading your blog! Enjoyed it thoroughly… even though it’s a year old — it’s still timeless! thanks for the laugh! :)

  48. TJ says:

    Great timing! My gf and I were just talking about this last night (over wine, of course!). Every year I do the same shit you wrote about, and I swore that this year I AM DONE WITH THE BULLSHIT. Whether they want to or not, the boys (7 and 14 yrs old) are going to learn that less really is more. They will be fine, I’m the one who stresses!

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