This year was my easiest year yet to buy Christmas gifts. During our move I had listening to the The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing on Audible. I had been wanting to read it for forever but being busy with work and kids it never happened. This was the perfect opportunity to get all that knowledge in my head and boy am I glad I did. It helped me realize the importance of being intentional about what comes and stays in our home.
I took the tips I got from the book and used them on my children. Prior to moving I cleaned out their playroom and bedrooms but once we got in our new house I noticed a lot of toys just being left around and not cared about. That night I went through all their toys and purged so much. Now they have the toys they truly love and play with and not much else. It has been a game changer for us!
Once the holidays rolled around I knew I wanted to keep Christmas simple. Here is what is working for us.
Sit down with them one on one with no distractions and start their list. Don’t do this in a group setting. This is something I realized very quickly with my girls. If Everly wanted a Rock Star Barbie, Ashlyn asked for one even though she really didn’t care for one.
Don’t have them pick from a toy catalog.
When kids look at these catalogs they are probably going to pick out every toy they see. I know mine do. They also do this when they see toys on TV. It’s called marketing and it shouldn’t be involved in making a Christmas list. Now I am not saying don’t let them ever look at it but while you are sitting down together don’t have it available.
Give them a limit.
We tell our kids to come up with 5 things they want for Christmas. This doesn’t mean they are only getting 5 gifts but it helps them focus on toys they really want versus asking for every toy that comes to mind.
Be honest with them.
I am a huge believer in telling my children that we can ask for these toys but to remember that sometimes it isn’t always possible to get everything. I don’t want them to be disappointed if I can’t get that hot toy of the year. I always tell them that if something isn’t there we can always try for a birthday and to be grateful for what we do get.
Have Santa only bring one toy for Christmas.
Ok, so this is definitely based on each family’s Christmas tradition and preference so this is just what we do (no judgement if all presents or more come from Santa, whatever works!). We do one Santa gift because we all know Santa is super magical and all that jazz so I don’t want them to think he is magically goes to get them every thing they want just because he has elves making them. So we do one big Santa gift and once they commit to it that is it. It helps us get that gift early because it sells out and they can’t change their mind because he has to make it and needs time to do so. Like I said, whatever works for you.
So that is how we do Christmas gifts in our house. I would love to hear what you all do for gifts with your children. Do you set a limit or go all out? Do you just do one gift from Santa and one from you? Whatever your family traditions are just remember they are special to you and that is what makes them awesome.
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