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Old 11-30-2011, 04:22 AM   #21
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Not guilty but sad sometimes. We don't have extra in the budget this year but if you do and the kids aren't babies I would gift them an experience. One on one time with each child. I have done a trip to the zoo with a picnic. My mom did Disney on ice. Sewing a purse (yes my daughter asked for making one) gift was picking out pattern, fabric and time off work to sew it. Tons of giftable experiences that don't take shelf space just time and money. I have thought about giving my son 3 hours to sword fight and build forts with mom

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Old 11-30-2011, 05:19 AM   #22
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Re: Does anyone feel guilty?

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We started doing three gifts for each child which worked really well for us.
1. Something they need (usually clothing)
2. Something they want (toy)
3. Something to help them grow (book)

However, I am feeling guilty about Santa presents. I remember the feeling of running downstairs to find my stocking. I am still trying to figure out how to handle that this year. I want there to be just enough fun without adding too much stuff.
I like this idea and DH and I had the idea of getting my daughter only as many gifts as she is old (she's 2), but I did go overboard this year already (4 gifts+). I remember the wonder of coming down to a lit tree with lots of presents under it on Christmas morning. Of course I had 5 brothers and sisters so they weren't all for me, but I remember there being a lot. We aren't doing Santa with dd so that helps and hurts at the same time. I don't want her to feel left out as she gets older. And she has pretty limited toys so I do what to give her more choices.
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Old 11-30-2011, 07:02 AM   #23
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Re: Does anyone feel guilty?

OK, my first thought when this was posted was "NO", but, now that I am getting closer, I find myself thinking "Maybe I should get one more thing"....

I grew up with toys flowing from the tree. I've never done that much, but definitely have always had 8-10 packages for my son (now 5). This year its going to be 2-3 small gifts from us and one big shared gift from Santa...I'm nervous that he's going to be disappointed...
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Old 11-30-2011, 11:40 AM   #24
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Re: Does anyone feel guilty?

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I like this idea and DH and I had the idea of getting my daughter only as many gifts as she is old (she's 2), but I did go overboard this year already (4 gifts+). I remember the wonder of coming down to a lit tree with lots of presents under it on Christmas morning. Of course I had 5 brothers and sisters so they weren't all for me, but I remember there being a lot. We aren't doing Santa with dd so that helps and hurts at the same time. I don't want her to feel left out as she gets older. And she has pretty limited toys so I do what to give her more choices.
This is not meant to sound as harsh as it probably will but that just screams bad idea to me! As kids get older their gifts get more expensive. Imagine how much you would have to shell out for gifts for a 16 year old! Unless you just got mostly small cheapy gifts (my mom used to do this) and I don't think that is best either.
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Old 11-30-2011, 05:00 PM   #25
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Re: Does anyone feel guilty?

We give each of our four kids 3 gifts each--it was good enough for Jesus, so it's good enough for them . My 2yr old dd, for example, is getting a Bitty Baby, a wooden shape sorter, and an ornament for the tree (we do that every year--i have a beautiful collection from my childhood, DH is so jealous).

This is way less than their cousins get, but they are older and spoiled rotten. I only have to look at how entitled and unappreciative they are to remember why we do this.

My parents give each grandchild a toy (so I requested a cloth diaper bag for dd), an outfit, and a book. My mom doesn't agree with my minimalism, but she did tell me this year how nice it is that that at least my kids actually appreciate her gifts (as opposed to aformentioned cousins).

We requested no gifts from any cousins, aunts, uncles, etc.
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Old 12-01-2011, 08:46 AM   #26
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Re: Does anyone feel guilty?

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Originally Posted by Melinda29 View Post
We give each of our four kids 3 gifts each--it was good enough for Jesus, so it's good enough for them . My 2yr old dd, for example, is getting a Bitty Baby, a wooden shape sorter, and an ornament for the tree (we do that every year--i have a beautiful collection from my childhood, DH is so jealous).

This is way less than their cousins get, but they are older and spoiled rotten. I only have to look at how entitled and unappreciative they are to remember why we do this.

My parents give each grandchild a toy (so I requested a cloth diaper bag for dd), an outfit, and a book. My mom doesn't agree with my minimalism, but she did tell me this year how nice it is that that at least my kids actually appreciate her gifts (as opposed to aformentioned cousins).

We requested no gifts from any cousins, aunts, uncles, etc.
I think that is the best part kids that don't get given everything they want really learn to appreciate what they have. That's one of the best gifts you can give your children is teaching them to be happy with what they have! It's nice for your mother or any gift giver to feel appreciated!
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Old 12-04-2011, 04:43 AM   #27
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Re: Does anyone feel guilty?

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Originally Posted by Fashionably Green Baby View Post
This is not meant to sound as harsh as it probably will but that just screams bad idea to me! As kids get older their gifts get more expensive. Imagine how much you would have to shell out for gifts for a 16 year old! Unless you just got mostly small cheapy gifts (my mom used to do this) and I don't think that is best either.
Thanks FGB! I guess I do need to think that one out a bit better!
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Old 12-04-2011, 06:05 AM   #28
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Re: Does anyone feel guilty?

We are also limiting the gifts. 1 big item each from santa and filled stockings. The girls will be 3.5 and 8 months. I don't want to set the precedent of having a tree full of gifts. It's easy when they are little b/c their stuff is affordable, but in ten years we will not be able to afford every little electronic gadget they want.

The last two years with DD1 we've bought quite a bit (and we have 4 sets of grandparents!) and she's overwhelmed. She got tired of opening stuff and most of it she never touches again. It's such a waste of money. We are encouraging the grandparents to buy "experiences" for her, like paying for a dance or art class for her that she'll get more out of than another toy.

Okay, got a little off topic! Don't feel guilty. You are teaching your children to appreciate what they are given.
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Old 12-04-2011, 09:27 AM   #29
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Re: Does anyone feel guilty?

We're doing a complete shift this year in our approach to the holidays. Rather than focus on just one day of giving, we are spreading the festivities out over the whole month of December and are encompassing the special days of all faiths.

We have a 3.5 DS and B/G 6 weeks old twins, so this is really focused on the 3.5 yr old ... but we thought this was a good age to start a new family tradition. Each day we do something special, for "advent" ... so far we have received an Advent Calendar in the mailbox (and we're opening a window each night), we've written a letter to Santa and gone to the post office to mail it, and we've gone to a free recital of The Nutcracker at our local library. Other activities we have planned include a night picnic under the Full Moon, a winter nature walk, going to bed in new PJs, a board game night with a 'new to us' (freecycled) board game, and going to see a local ginger bread house and train display. We're also planning on recognizing Hanukkah, Yule, Saint Nick's and Bodhi Day, as well as Christmas.

As we're not practicing Christians we feel this allows us to make the entire month special without focusing on just the gift giving aspect of Christmas (which feels a little hypocritical to me!) So far my son is really enjoying the process ... although I'm already seeing that it will take some time to get extended family on board.

We too are hoping that grandparents will focus on 'experience' gifts rather than stuff ... but that's going to be a tough shift with our families.

I'm so glad I came across this thread ... although I love the idea of having a whole month of festivities, I too was feeling a wee bit guilty about not showering my LOs with gifts and stuff, and wondering if it made me a mean mama!
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Old 12-05-2011, 05:47 PM   #30
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Re: Does anyone feel guilty?

I wish we were limiting gifts. I dislike "stuff" but dh insisted on getting our 3 year old a bunch of junk toys and his mom spoils him as well.
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