How we keep Christmas costs down

Ready for a shocker? I don’t “really” buy Christmas presents for my children and husband. Okay, I did say “really” 🙂 Let me explain.

My husband and I have decided that when it comes to Christmas that we should buy as little as possible. What that normally means is that we don’t buy each other gifts and we only buy stocking stuffers for the children.

The stocking stuffers are normally dollar store purchases and fruit. Fruit? Yes, fruit 🙂 The stockings are the one item that the children are allowed to open as soon as they rise. My husband and I don’t want to get up at the crack of dawn, so we fill their stockings with activities and something to snack on…hence the fruit.

Before you get the wrong impression that my children don’t know the joy of Christmas or that they don’t get awesome presents, let me explain more. We have been blessed with very generous family members. They give the kids tons, from clothes to dolls and gadgets. We don’t need to go overboard with presents. They are getting plenty.

What do we do for presents for each other? Well, we normally give gifts that don’t hurt the pocketbook. We do massages and dates. I cash in any points that I have earned through various programs to get a few gift cards. I might dip into my Paypal stash that I’ve earned through selling stuff on E-bay.

My situation may also be helped by the fact that my children have never believed in Santa Claus. They know who each present came from, and they are grateful. They have realized that the presents don’t normally come from their parents, and we have explained this to them. Mommy and Daddy provide for them with presents like food, shelter, and clothing. They get plenty of toys and goodies from everyone else.

We have lots of Christmas fun together that doesn’t involve presents.  On the Friday after Thanksgiving/Black Friday, we dig out the Christmas decorations and blare the Christmas carols.  We put up the tree, and the kids put up the ornaments.  They get an ornament every year from their grandma, and they love remembering the years past.  Fun is had by all, and we don’t spend a dime 🙂

We do buy presents for others for Christmas.  We try to make as many homemade gifts as possible, and the kids normally join in the present making.

I just wanted to encourage you that it is possible to not overdo this holiday. You might not be blessed with such generous family members, but you can still cut back to a reasonable level. Christmas isn’t about greed or how much we can get.  It is about the celebration of Jesus and his arrival in this world.  He is the greatest gift, and we should be content even if we have nothing but Him.


3 thoughts on “How we keep Christmas costs down

  1. Perfectly said!
    We too, teach our children that there is NO Santa, he is not real its just fun to pretend. There is however, a REAL Jesus and isn’t it wonderful that we do not have to pretend that he is real! Jesus came to this earth to save us and died for our sins and was buried and rose again on the third day. He then ascended to heaven and one day HE WILL COME AGAIN! That is REAL.
    The other day Grandma S. was talking to Elijah about Christmas and was trying to get Elijah to want to go visit Santa.
    He later told me “Mom, why did no one tell Grandma that there is no Santa? You know we should tell her about Jesus. After all, he is why we celebrate Christmas; he is Real, not Santa.”
    … I am so proud of my kids!
    It makes me proud to know that when the world tells me that teaching my children not to believe in Santa is hurting my child’s spirit, my child goes and proves them wrong, he showed me in his own words.
    Raising children of great CHARACTER is what we should be doing not raising children to believe in characters of a make believe world.

  2. Well said Robin. The truth is alway the best way to live. In todays economy what do parents tell the children about Santa when they don’t have enough money for food? Isn’t the premise that if you are good Santa will leave a gift? I am thankful that Jesus is the Lord of our lives and we celebrate the birth of the eternal king.

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