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¡Ho, ho, ho! ¡Sí! ¡Ya está aquí la navidad! por eso, hoy queremos regalarte este artículo para que aprendas nuevo vocabulario relacionado con esta época.

So, have you started your Christmas shopping yet? Yes, before we know it the season of goodwill to all men and women – and the frenzy of gift-buying and giving – will be upon us, and that’s why this month’s Spread the Word will be looking at gifts and presents and those things that we soon might find under the tree or in our Christmas stockings.

What are hoping to get this year?  A bottle of expensive perfume or cologne? A piece of jewelry of some kind, like a bracelet, necklace or ring? Maybe you prefer something more cerebral and would like to get a book, whether it’s the latest bestseller or a classic novel. Books can be difficult things to choose, however, unless you have a very clear idea about the recipient’s taste. I’ve found this great chart in the New York Times that could help: So, You’d Like to Buy Your Loved One a Book? Here you’ll be asked if the book is for a history buff (enthusiast), a Francophile or someone into Dinosaurs.

Let’s face it, there’s a lot of pressure to get it right. No one wants their gift to be received by a less than sincere ‘just what I’ve always wanted!’ It’s good to think out of the box and, again, maybe the press can help: here’s the gift guide from the Guardian, where you can search by type of gift, by price range or by type of person (including pets!). Here you can find such original presents as an intuitive navigation system for cyclists, a Minion Starter kit for new fish keepers and handmade soap for gardeners.

And it’s not just the choice of gift that can pose a problem, but the quantity that you may have to buy. One answer to this is the ever-popular Secret Santa tradition, where the gift-giver is anonymous. And did you know that there are various online platforms like drawnames.com and easysanta.com for groups who can’t meet in person to draw the names from a hat or bowl before the Secret Santa event?

A little more complicated – but definitely more fun – is White Elephant. The term white elephant refers to an unwanted gift that cannot be easily disposed of. The term originates in the legend of the King of Siam, who apparently gave rare albino elephants to courtiers who had displeased him, so that they might be ruined by the animals’ maintenance costs! Anyway, back to the game: like Secret Santa, gift-givers are anonymous, but this time the receiver has the option of stealing others’ opened presents.

And each family or group can have their own individual traditions: in mine, while being able to open up the Christmas stockings on Christmas morning (actually a football sock, a satsuma always to be found within, among other things), we had to wait until after Christmas lunch to open the rest – something that required a lot of patience and self-control of a child! Of course now I think back fondly to this family custom, handing out the presents and all feeling content after turkey with all the trimmings (extra bits) and Christmas pudding!

I wish you all a very Happy Christmas and all good things for 2018!