With Thanksgiving now behind me, I am left with the one part of the Christmas holiday that I dislike the most— writing a Christmas wish list. The topic came up, much to my dismay, over the holiday weekend as I spent time at home with my father.

It is not that I have any issues with the holiday, or gift giving as a whole. When I am tasked to sit down and collect things I would like for Christmas in a list, my mind is a complete blank.

With all the possibilities in the world, my mind freezes and leaves me with zero ideas. This has led to some creative gift-giving by my father over the years, with books serving as a perennial gift idea.

I didn’t always have this problem. As a child, I can remember writing pages upon pages of things I would like for Christmas each year. I didn’t expect to get all of them, but it is good to have options. Today I find myself hard pressed to come up with five things.

Instead of the toys and movies I would often ask for as a child, my lists these days typically include socks, clothes and other mundane things. A few years ago, I was ecstatic to get a new set of nonstick cookware for Christmas, much to the chagrin of my inner child. Last year, I was happy to get some extra shelving for storage space in my apartment. It is part of growing up, I suppose.

And that is what often leads to my quandary when writing these lists: is this something I want or something I need? To me there is a fine distinction between the two. While more socks are always useful, I doubt they are likely to top anyone’s list for things they want for Christmas. At the same time, I honestly wouldn’t be disappointed if I got them.

Happy birthday Wednesday to Keira Jones, Ricky Briggs, Maurice Lutz, Mickey McCollum and Kimberly Diarse, all of Sherman; Dexter Butler and Dreylin Butler of Denison; Lois Sellers of Sadler; Gabriel Green of Round Rock; Cale Wiggington of Glenn Heights; Mary Lou Newman of East Brunswick, New Jersey; Lon Kurtzman of Folsom, California; and Carolyn Cooper of Phoenix, Arizona.