I need a Hitchhiker's Guide to Christmas shopping. Every time I think about it my blood pressure rises another notch or two. Having to mail some of the stuff out just adds to the pressure. We're rapidly approaching the time when it gets more and more expensive to ship stuff every day, until finally it becomes impossible to get it there on time. I hate crowds and traffic, which is what malls are surrounded by on weekends and weeknights, so I keep not going shopping. I've been ultra wishy-washy about online purchases, and can't even come up with a hint for PDM about what I want for myself. Every year I tell myself that I will start earlier the next year and not go through this, and every year I end up doing half of it at the last minute.
All this holiday procrastination amplifies the guilt I feel for my ordinary, run-of-the-mill procrastination. Here is a partial list of stuff I keep putting off, in no particular order.
1. Get my notebook computer fixed. It's had a hardware problem for almost two years now that makes it a real pain in the ass to use.
2. Get a new cell phone, get a local number, and tell them my last name is different now. I moved and changed my name in July 2004. I'm just a bit behind on tying up the loose ends.
3. Order window treatments for the new house. Been there nearly a year, but the neighbors can still look straight into our kitchen and living room any time day or night.
4. Update my address books (on- and off-line). Again, more than a year behind with moves, births and deaths. I have the info scattered on little bits of paper all over the house. I can never find them when I need one.
5. Close those two Massachusetts bank accounts that have about $50 each in them. I haven't used them in over two years. Oh yeah, and they're still under my old last name.
6. Go to the dentist for teeth cleaning. Two years behind. Nothing hurts, so why bother? Ditto for the eye doctor. Except I know I need new glasses and have for at least a year.
7. Mail birthday cards and presents. I'm usually at least three or four weeks behind at all times.
8. Housecleaning. Usually done in a panic just before guests arrive.
9. Wash and wax car. Too cold, wait for spring...
10. Order and plant spring-blooming bulbs. Too late, wait for next year.
11. Christmas cards. Should have been working on them by now, but haven't even bought any yet. Gulp.
And so it goes. Ordinarily my long list of stuff to do that is late doesn't bother me at all, but now I have gift panic and feel completely behind in everything.