The conversation around many Mums at the moment seems to involve fitting in the Christmas shopping and finishing it off. I sit there feeling a bit worried as I have not thought about it yet. Today I had some time to begin thinking and then, in my email box was a blog from Joshua Becker – The Minimalist – writing about Christmas giving. I appreciated what he had to say …
“We have made an intentional decision to still give our kids Christmas presents and their grandparents do the same. We see gift-giving as an appropriate expression of love. From us, our kids receive one thing they want, one thing they need, and one experience to share with the family.”
The above is Becker telling in an interview how he does Christmas with his family. The reporter then asked if his kids are disappointed with the gifts and how it works. Interestingly he used the opportunity to write about our response as adults to not set kids up for disappointment on Christmas day. Such an interesting concept in our materialistic world!
“No. I don’t think they are disappointed on Christmas morning. Maybe they were a little bit the first time, but now they have come to expect it.”
We are very open with our kids about our approach to Christmas and how many gifts they will receive. They know what to expect before the morning even arrives.
Conversely, when we exchange gifts with our extended family, disappointment actually has a better opportunity to arise. There is great anticipation. Nobody knows how many gifts are going to be unwrapped or how much money was spent… but you can almost always bet, in the kids’ mind, there will not be enough.
This holiday season, let’s be intentional about the expectations we set for our kids. Talk less about the gifts under the tree. And talk more about family and friends and faith. Promise fun with the cousins and the joy of being together with family. If you have decided to cut back on holiday gifts this year, tell your kids why—before you sit down around the tree.
Set healthy expectations. Maybe we can avoid holiday disappointment. Even better, maybe we can bring the focus of Christmas back to where it belongs.”
Please click here to read the whole blog that discusses the way we may unknowingly set our kids up for disappointment.
So, happy Christmas shopping, but also happy Christmas experiences and relating and, for me, vey much personally it is such a happy time of realising the birth of Jesus- the Saviour or our world!