Firstly, we have been clear about a few things we're doing this Christmas that may seem a bit different. Brad and I are not doing Santa and we're giving immaterial gifts (think fancy dinner date) for each other. We've still bought gifts for family members, but just immediate family. The aim is less materialism, less stuff, less pressure, less clutter. Less. Ah. I love that word. But I also love the word 'MORE' and my heart is an idol factory, so this will hopefully help.
|Mom - "Lily, look at your Christmas gift from us!"|
Lily - "I don't care, I want to nap"
But on the note of gift giving and doing things a bit differently, I thought I'd ask: Are you buying your baby/toddler a gift or gifts over the holidays? I don't think we are!
Not because we don't love our kids or want to bless them. But for a couple simple reasons:
- They won't remember these Christmases or these gifts
- We give them new toys and clothing frequently since we shop second hand and they grow oh so fast
- Anything they've needed, we've bought as the need arose, not waiting until a gift-giving holiday to give
- They have grandparents and aunts and uncles who give SO generously on gift-giving holidays
My second and third point kind of go together. With growing kids and a small space with little storage, we are often buying and swapping out kids clothing and toys. Affordable, often used clothing and toys, but the point stands that there is a high turn over rate around here. Oli outgrew his warm pants last week so I spent a good amount of money on several news pairs. I could have bought them as Christmas gifts, I suppose, but he needed them now. Lily potty trained recently and thus needed two-piece pajamas instead of onesies so I bought her three sets. They would have made great under-the-tree presents, but we couldn't wait until December 25th. If I'm buying things for my kids almost weekly at this stage, should I also buy additional gifts to open on Christmas morning just because?
|Lily looking very unenthused on her first Christmas morning despite everyone's best efforts to hype up the gifts|
In fact, the abundance that my children receive from relatives other than us has become almost problematic. Lily received so much last Christmas and for her birthday this year that we had to hide gifts for weeks and gradually let her play with the toys to combat overwhelming her (as excess often does). Another reason we did this was that we'd seen in the past that when she got many gifts all at once, none of them seemed particularly exciting and all became second rate quickly. When we gave her one toy, waited several weeks, and gave another (and so on...) she appreciated the gifts more and they lasted us longer.
So with all of this considered, we aren't buying our kids Christmas presents right now. We will in the future, but for now, don't find it necessary. I still love the idea of buying the kids a Christmas tree ornament yearly, and have done so this year from a sweet Etsy shop (I got the wooden circles with their names plus one for Brad and I that said B + E in a heart, both are no longer for sale this season).
What about you?
Are you buying your babies/toddlers gifts?
Why/ Why not?