I’ve decided not to tell people what to get our kids for Christmas this year.
This comes after a few year stretch of asking and hinting to our family to get the kids “experiences” or things that they can do, you know, something practical. It is a common topic right now around gift giving, and it definitely isn’t wrong or bad.
However, for us, I felt like it was taking some of the joy out of gift giving for our family. It seemed like my mom felt like she had to “ask permission” before she gave a gift to any of our kids. She’d often run ideas past me over and over again to make sure that it fit within our new, unwritten “gift-giving guidelines.”
Ugh…not my intention.
As much as I love simplifying and getting rid of excess, I know that I can’t push my value for it onto others. If they adopt if for themselves, awesome! If they don’t, awesome!
And while Christmas is about so much more than gifts, it is also about gifts, and gifts aren’t bad. They are an expression of love. Yes, this can get distorted, and inevitably there will be some gifts that we buy out of obligation, but the gift-giving between my family and our kids (ages 1-6), is love…and joy…and fun.
And I don’t want to get in the way of that.
Of course there is an exception to all of this, if anyone asks me for ideas for our kids, I will gladly tell them:
The absolute best gift you could give the kids (and I) is to take them for a day or afternoon and go the movies/zoo/children’s museum.
But this is just if they ask…and some family members do…and some don’t…and that is OK!
Will my kids likely end up with more toys than they need this Christmas?
But I’ll pack some of them away to take out during the long winter days of January and February. And a week or two after Christmas, when the newness has worn off, the kids and I will go through all of their toys (old and new), and decide which to keep and which to donate so that they all fit in their toy bins again.
So, we’ll see how it goes this year. We may have to adjust again for next year, but that is life :)
And I truly hope that you are enjoying this special season with your family and friends! It goes so quickly doesn’t it!?!