Christmas Gifts

A few years back my husband and I decided to downsize Christmas in the gift department.  Not that we are a couple of Scrooge’s but our family already celebrates several birthday’s around the holidays and it makes sense to us that a birthday should be a big deal for the person who was born on the special day.  What does Jesus get excited about on his birthday?  People loving other people, giving without guilt or obligation, sacrifice, service etc.

It definitely helps that our birthdays fall like they do otherwise we may not be able to stick to our guns.  We came up with a gimmicky plan.  Three gifts for each child to represent the gifts of the magi to the baby Jesus.  My husband would be mortified if I didn’t tell you that, NO we don’t really think they only gave three gifts.  That is a myth, there were likely many wise men and many more than three gifts.  But, since three is tradition we stick to three gifts for the kids.

I had already picked up two gift for each child over the past few months.  Yesterday I had an idea and I allowed each of the big boys to shop alone with me and pick out something for the other.   In my mind I set a dollar amount (max $30) and went with them to the toy section.

It was absolutely precious to see their giving heart.  Not once did either boy say “ooh I hope I get…” or “I really want…”  Both of them set to work evaluating each option and weighing the amount of joy his brother would get out of a particular gift.  They were so thoughtful!  My six year old even remembered some things that his big brother had enjoyed at friends houses and tried to find something similar to the toys he knew have already been enjoyed.

Truly, I expected a completely different experience with my young boys alone (not interrupted by siblings) in the toy aisle to choose from the racks and racks of enticing things!  We generally avoid the toy section like our lives depend on it.  Who know that may be true. Ha!

I am SO PROUD of them and in the end both picked gifts well under the dollar amount I had in mind.

Today we wrap presents and come up with a plan for keeping Pee Wee from knocking down the tree and unwrapping packages.

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11 Comments

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11 responses to “Christmas Gifts

  1. thelumberjackswife

    What good boys! Good luck with Pee Wee! 🙂

  2. Isn’t it wonderful to see your kids developing the heart for giving you always hoped they’d have? Good job, Mom!

    When my neice was little my sister came up with the great idea of going to the garden store and getting the little plastic fencing to go around the tree. Kellie couldn’t climb over — too pointy — and the presents were far enough back she couldn’t reach — however, you need a pretty good sized room to pull that off.

  3. I do love hearing about your family. What sweet boys, to be so considerate.

    Hope the holidays are not a stress for you, but it sounds like you’ve got it all in hand.

  4. Every year I tell my kids not to expect much, and then I end up finding things for them and getting them more than I intended. So every year they say, “Mom, you always say that and then you always get us a lot.” They are content with whatever they get, though, and I’m grateful for that. I think three gifts each is a great idea.

    • I have four now! 🙂 So much for keeping to my guns. Ha ha. I think you nailed it I’m looking for gratefulness and a giving heart! Also that doesn’t mean I can stop grandma’s and grandpa’s! They will be plenty present”ed”.

  5. Just so you know – the three gift tradition was brought up in Sermon Club at work yesterday as a great way to put some meaning back into the holiday and to not overspend. They might even share it in the sermon this weekend. So tell your husband not to be embarrassed!

    • Haha! That’s awesome. He is a history guy and is embarrassed not because it is cliche but because it is a misconception. BUT… if we were to be literal it would be tons of wisemen and probably thousands of dollars in gifts. So, I’ll stick with three! 🙂

  6. purplemoose

    That sounds like a good idea. This year we did something similar, each person had $25 to get 4 presents. Now we’re all done, just have to keep the kids from telling each other “I got you a …..” only 22 more days!

  7. You should be proud! We never did the 3 present thing, but all month I’m giving tips (especially on Saturday,) how keep Christ in Christmas.

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