One of the best decisions I have made as a mom is to limit the amount of gifts I purchase for my children. When my daughter was a baby, my wife and I decided to look up some holiday traditions to start for her first Christmas in 2011. We asked our friends and neighbors on social media to share their favorite holiday traditions and we tried a few to see what would fit for our family.
The one tradition I am most grateful for starting is the WANT, NEED, WEAR, READ guide to gifts. Each child receives 4 presents to unwrap from the moms, one in each of the categories. There are times we will put 2-3 items in the box. For example, with a school librarian and former book store manager as parents, our kids get 3-4 books in their READ box. We have also been known to have a full outfit in the WEAR box as well. Some of the categories overlap at times, but there are always 4 boxes to unwrap each. If it is a year when buying gifts for each other is in our budget, we stick to the same 4 categories.
Of course, this doesn’t stop Grandma from going overboard and buying more, but it does help OUR budget.
I realize switching to WANT, NEED, WEAR, READ gifts after going a more “traditional” gift giving route may be difficult, but you may thank me afterwards. Less clutter, less money, and less stress!
As for stockings, another tradition we adopted for our daughter’s first Christmas is each year the stockings are filled with the letter of the year. Her first Christmas, everything started with an A, then B, and now we are on H for this year. It makes shopping like a scavenger hunt!
Oh and Santa still brings presents- 3 unwrapped gifts