Every year at this time I remember how appalled I am by the commercialism of Christmas and how the true meaning of Christmas has been lost in this Country. While I am all for presents and making a child’s Christmas memorable, I am also all for creating those memories for doing things with family and friends vs. giving stuff.
I am the first to admit my son is spoiled and wants for little, however, I think we have done a fairly good job at making him appreciative of what he has gotten. Most of the things he has he has had to earn, which in itself is backfiring but that is another story! Having just finished Christmas though I realized we have hit a breaking point. This will be the year of quality NOT quantity.
At our house we do pretty good and limiting the amount of stuff we give. It is hard since we are sale shoppers and can buy more “stuff” with our budget, but walking into my mother-in-laws house on Christmas reminds me how appalling I find the gift giving part of Christmas. While I love my mother-in-law and know in her mind she is showing her love and affection by giving stuff, I do wish she would pick three or four thoughtful gifts that we would all enjoy and then donate everything else to Toys for Tots or the Salvation Army.
All these gifts leads to our issue this Christmas, appreciation. I find it difficult to teach my son to be appreciative of gifts that take him hours to open and he is still looking for the “gift” he asked for. While my husband was so frustrated on Christmas with his attitude I was sad. Not sad by the way he was acting but sad by the situation. My son would say thank you for each gift but would then move right on to the next one. At six he was not interested in the clothes and was only looking for Star Wars toys and Lego’s, the things he asked for.
This leads to my goal for 2013. Quality NOT quantity. While I am not sure I can change my mother-in-law and her giving ways, I am hoping to encourage her to give her grandchildren the gift of time and spend her money doing something with them and getting them the one or two things they want rather than just buying them stuff to buy them stuff. And even though I cannot change other people, I will be changing the way Seth and I give gifts to not only our son but all family members and close friends. This is the year of creating memories through activities not through giving Barbie’s, Lego’s and match box cars.
Please consider changing your family giving ways to activities and not stuff.