For the last few years I have felt rather Ginchlike in the face of Christmas. I used to love love ❤️ ❤️❤️❤️Christmas as a child until now I feel like it’s an overwhelming to do list. I feel pressure to create the Christmas feeling , Christmas decor, and Christmas traditions that now I need to create for my kids. The gifts , that I want to be perfect! The clothes , I want everyone to look beautiful. The events , it’s a lot of juggling family dynamics and different personalities. All the while trying to swim through the flashing lights and, shiny plastic Christmas in the stores. 

The. After Christmas I experience Christmas blues, like “it’s over?!  That quick?”

And I have a mountain of stuff to find a home for. Very negative 👎🏻 

God reminds me that “You can not serve two masters. ”
So I’ve tried to distinguish between meaningful gifts and just stuff.

Here is the beginning of my discernment process:
Meaningful Gifts are not:

  • Merchandising character crap
  • Impulse sale purchases
  • Brightly colored plastic toys
  • “Filler toys “
  • Toys requiring 12 batteries

Maybe meaningful gifts are :

  • Well thought out gifts , you may think of it 2 months in advance: 
  • Here are some categories that I will shot for this year….
  • Gift Connected to Child’s Hobby – legos , painting, play-dough- dress up, photography, instruments, cake decorating, 
  • Outdoor toys- everything we bought for outdoor play last year, scooters, skates , balls they still play with
  • Favorite pretend accessories: pirate things, play swords, batons and ribbon dancers, microphones, scientist kits
  • Classic board games: especially ones that u played when u were young or your husband did
  • Clothing : maybe one outfit they can wear Christmas Day (you will spend this money anyway, this way they unwrap a beautiful outfit Christmas Morning that they wear that day) 
  • Items that the really need anyway: Pajamas, underwear and socks: something they need anyway , but it’s nice to have new items
  • Books- big hardback beautiful books on different topics : these are gifts that my kids have used for years , Lego ideas , Dino-encyclopedias, child cookbooks
  • Group toys that would be a good addition to the playroom- Jumbo blocks 
  • Religious items : new age-appropriate Bibles, Rosary, scapular, religious medals, bracelet, necklace
  • Jewelry: necklace, watch , gloves
  • Bags: Schoolbag, lunchbag / overnight bag- 5 months into school maybe they need a fresh bag
  • Wooden toys: they can be so expensive, so each child can get one and those toys you keep. 

Other aisles in stores other than toy aisle :

  • Hunting aisle
  • Art Aisle 
  • Movie aisle 
  • Books 
  • Clothes
  • Outdoor aisle 
  • Nail polish/ makeup aisle 
  • Cake decorating aisle

Stocking stuffers

  • New toothpaste, toothbrush 
  • Ponytails, bows
  • Chapstick 
  • Favorite candy

Family traditions I would like to start or try to keep up:

  • One tradition my mom did every year that I should probably take on:On Christmas Eve, we got to open one gift and it was a pair of pajamas 
  • Brandon’s Mom always put Chapstick in their stockings.
  • Brandon’s Grandpa says they used to get an orange or apple as a gift in their stocking. If we did this we can remind them why each year. 
  • Maybe ask Grandparents what type of gifts they received on Christmas and incorporate that somehow to keep up the traditions

Merry Early Christmas 🎄 

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