Merry “Little” Christmas; Experiment in Downsizing

merry little christmas four gifts

This Christmas I am trying something different, trying to “downsize” and simplify our Christmas. I want us to have a Merry “Little” Christmas and here’s why: 

Last Christmas my kids didn’t get a TON of gifts because they wanted more expensive electronics. But they still got quite a few gifts between the two of them. Gifts that I spent not only money on, but energy to go buy, thought into what would be “perfect” for them, and lots of time doing all these things plus wrapping them! Only for both my boys to be excited for a tiny bit and then onto the next thing. It didn’t really seem to matter. None of the planning, trekking from store to store, thought, money, time, or energy really mattered to my two kids. They basically just wanted to go play on their electronics that they got.

As I logged onto Facebook I seen my friend Kristi post about how her kids got four gifts: A Want, A Need, A Wear, A Read.  Something they wanted, something they needed, something they could wear, and something to read. 

I LOVE THIS IDEA! I thought that’s it, that is what I am doing next year! And here it is the next year and I am pretty nervous. Not because my kids will be upset, but because I realize I am the reason they are spoiled!

I am having a hard time not just buying stupid junk as a gift for each of them. I am realizing that I see more value in “stuff” then I realized. I need this simplifying just as much if not more then my kids!

I just want to bring Christmas back to the reason we celebrate in the first place. And gifts are not the focus in this house! My kids will still know that we love them even if we are “only buying them 4 gifts” and they will still be “spoiled” by their grandparents I am sure!

As part of the four gifts this Christmas there will be less shopping, less stress, less wrapping, less gimmies. Which as years go on and I can continue to follow this plan hopefully will become less and less!! When you “only” get one want you learn to be a bit picky for what you ask for 😉

I want my kids to remember the time we spent together as a family, not the gifts they received.

WANT: Something they want, the thing they want the most, doesn’t need to have any meaning

NEED: Something they need; “needs” will be a little different then normal needs, because I won’t gift my child something they need, but more like it would be “nice to have” ie a case for a new Kindle that they bought themselves 😉

WEAR: something to wear; can be any thing to wear. I am getting my one son a watch that he will wear, the other asked for PJ’s

READ: Something to read; obviously a book or magazine. I am getting my oldest a magazine subscription that he will love receiving each month in the mail!

But I am adding two gifts:

Making a Memory :: Something we do as a family. An experience. It could be a trip, or a vacation we will take later in the summer, it could be a group activity. Anything that hopefully years from now, we will all look back at fondly and remember it!

Playing Together :: We love to play board games together as a family. So I think its a great family gift to add to our collection especially as our boys get older and there’s even more games we can all play together.

So that’s how I am trying to scale back and hopefully we can all learn to enjoy the season and each other a little more with less “stuff” to get in the way!

**Please know, I do not think that if you get your kids more then 4 gifts that you are a horrible person or spoiling your kids, or that your kids are ungrateful brats. I am simply sharing what I have learned about and am trying with my family.

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