While some people got up early and made their way to the lengthy lines outside of the country’s biggest retail stores this morning to search for a 97 inch TV for $4 (I bet each store only had 2 TVs), some Americans have decided to opt out of Black Friday shopping in order to focus on the things that truly matter.

As in family, friends, good food, volunteerism, and anything else that shifts away from the materialistic aspects to the holiday season. All of the things that make you go “aww” and fit in perfectly with the plot of a holiday themed episode of any typical sitcom.

Sarcasm aside, with two wars and another year of recession, is it time to refocus on what it means to have an enjoyable holiday season?

Via USA Today:

It'll be hard for many people — for the homeless and those trying to house them, for the hungry and those trying to feed them. Hard for relatives trying to get home, hard for employees (and employers) whose businesses can't afford much of a celebration or a thank you.

The 25-pound turkey, the office party, the year-end bonus, the family reunion, the second (or third) Christmas tree — all are threatened by what employment consultant John Challenger calls "a culture of frugality" and the need to refocus an alluring American dream: a happy holiday.

I’ve never met a person who gets multiple Christmas trees for their house. Some folks need to stop acting as if they’re too good for a reusable plastic tree. Captain Planet would approve.

That said, how many of you find yourselves planning to spend less money on the superfluous items and placing more focus on family and those in need?

Last year I had to tell my friends that Ebenezer Mae and her BFF, CitiCrook, ruined any opportunity for me to buy them gifts once I got hefty student loan bills. No one left out my name in the blessing because of it and we all managed to still enjoy the holiday.

If you find yourself in a similar predicament this year, how will you make sure you can say the same?

Michael Arceneaux hails from Houston, lives in Harlem and praises Beyoncé’s name wherever he goes. Follow him on Twitter.

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