Too many toys? Too much clutter?
This year, why not try to focus more on consumable or more memorable gifts…
My brother and sister in law have five children and one on the way. I remember a Christmas when my sister in law mentioned she’d prefer consumable gifts for the kids. I was lost. Consumable? Why can’t I just get them each a cool new toy? I think I ended up getting them some stickers, coloring books and one larger gift that they could share.
Fast forward to today and I finally get it! We have one child and already so much stuff. I actually have a book case that we’ve turned into toy storage with fabric boxes to conceal the mess. As you can see, that is working out great.
This will be the first year our son will really be able to dig into the gifts, but I still don’t want it to be overwhelmingly chaotic. It’s more important to have the time with family then it is to open a bunch of presents.
I’ve been thinking a lot about what gifts could have some deeper meaning this year and remain gifts to be talked about for years to come. Here are a few ideas to keep the clutter down and create a Christmas to remember:
- Give them an experience: This doesn’t need to be elaborate. It could be a trip to the local zoo, museum or even an amusement park! If you have the funds, this could be a family vacation to a National Park. Speaking of National Parks, did you know that 4th graders can get a pass for free entrance?
- Enjoy an activity together: Plan a day for an activity at home. Try craft making, building a birdhouse, cooking or baking together. Make it an event! If you really want them to have something to unwrap, you could get them a chef outfit, an apron, a birdhouse or other craft kit. Be sure to take photos! This could easily turn into an annual holiday tradition.
- A Subscription or Membership: How about a AAA Membership? Or, if they are a foodie or beer/wine lover, how about a membership to a x of the month club? Did you know there is a Cheese of the Month Club? Magazine or online subscriptions are a great option too! Stick with their passions and you’ll be sure to please. Bonus-these gifts won’t be forgotten on January 1st. They’ll be reminded of your generosity for months to come.
- BOOKS: I’m a big fan of books. There are a few books that our son loves more than others, but any book will bring a smile to his face. (His current favorite is “Kid Tea” by Two Lions.) The time spent with us reading to him is priceless. I love watching him turn the pages and explore the images. Books will give beautiful memories for you both for years to come.