Why My Kids Are Not Getting Christmas Presents This Year
The Christmas season is my favorite time of the year. I love to decorate, shop for gifts, and serve special Christmas treats. However, I do not like the stress that often accompanies the season.
I also don’t like how my kids begin acting around Christmastime. When my kids were younger, they began to notice all the toy commercials that bombarded our TV time each day. Inevitably, they would start asking for those toys for Christmas. I have to admit that many years they received a lot of those toys. Especially the “hot item” that parents would fight over just to make sure their kids got the best toy for Christmas.
Usually, within a week of Christmas, the new toys quickly became old toys and the kids would start asking for new things. Eventually we had so many toys and items that it was very hard to keep their rooms neat and picked up.
Last year, my husband and I struggled with what to get the kids for Christmas. They didn’t really need anything, and they couldn’t pinpoint one item for their “big” Christmas present. We ended up getting our son a laptop computer, and he has used it quite a bit. However, my daughter got a new gaming system that I think has only been played a few times in the last year.
It was quite clear that Christmas needed to be changed in our home. My husband and I agreed that instead of buying presents for our kids that were temporary and would be disposed of at some point, we would give them memories. That led us to decide to go on a family trip and forego the usual presents under the tree.
Now, don’t feel bad for my kids. Seriously! We’re going to spend part of our Christmas break at Disney World in Florida. They will definitely get their chance to purchase souvenirs that will be far more meaningful to them than any presents we could have bought them. And, they will have the memory of a fabulous trip to carry with them the rest of their lives. They’ll also still get gifts from grandparents and aunts and uncles.
I can’t say we’ll do this every year. It’s definitely an expensive undertaking even though we’ve scaled back on some other things this Christmas. But my husband and I feel very strongly that memories are more important than stuff. I’m sure we will take that feeling into account for Christmases to come.
I’ll let you know in a few weeks if this was a good decision or not. But for now, I’m enjoying a little less stressful Christmas season. I hope you can find a way to make Christmas less stressful for you, too!
My husband and I did this for our kids birthday parties this year. We took them both (b’days are about a month apart) to Legoland somewhere in the middle of that month. The boys did not get a party or receive gifts from the parents and they were thrilled with the arrangement. They did get gifts from the extended family and I made them each a special cake on their big day. When we returned both boys were in agreement they wanted to do that every year! I also tallied up the money for 2 days in Legoland and one night in a hotel for the 4 of us we didn’t spend any more money then I had putting on 2 big birthday parties plus presents the year before. My 4 year old is still talking about Legoland 3 months later. I would love to try this for Christmas as well, my children have too many material things and I think expirences stay with kids longer than another”it” toy that will only be “it’ for a short time.
That is a great way to celebrate birthdays, too! We think this will become a new tradition for us. Most likely it won’t be as extravagant as Disney, but we think the kids will love this more especially as they get older.
We too this for Christmas and give our girls the option of a birthday party or a weekend getaway! We have done Disney, and Dominican with them, but this year we thought we’d keep it closer to home….we live an hour or so away from a variety of ski resorts- I happened to stumble upon a deal on snowboards that I could not pass up (they both skied last season, so I knew this would go over well)…so they received the best of both worlds- gifts under the tree (their equipment) and we head out on a weekly basis to the slopes and enjoy a day with the family!! We even managed to get a deal at a resort that is a bit farther away and booked two 2 night stays with a family that the kids are friends with who also enjoy skiing.
Family, Friends and Fresh air!!
Bobbii, that is awesome! We did go skiing one year as well. The kids got their snow suits and other necessities as presents from my parents and us. I love how you got to experience family, friends, and fresh air!
We are doing this for our kids this year also. They haven’t really asked for much. So, we decided to surprise them with a trip instead. They will wake up Christmas morning with no gifts under the tree, only a letter telling them about their surprise trip. Hope it goes well!
Where did you take your kids for Christmas? Were they surprised! Our kids loved having a trip for Christmas, but I think they missed the tradition of presents on Christmas day. We are thinking about what we want to try this year.