Menu
Jump to content

What's with the ads?

Alicia64

The Cost of Xmas versus when we were kids

Recommended Posts

Is it sad that I can't really remember?  I do remember a bike and doll.  Another year was a pair of earrings that I had asked for.

 

We've done big Christmas, without meaning to.  Most of the things were not much $ or were needed.  One year my dd's got bedding.  Another I literally printed doll house accessories and got a big Crayola art set.  Yet another year we found this wooden train table with wooden trains, fake lego style blocks and other toys for $20.  It was awesome!!

 

We've decided to break the mega present buying cycle and give experiences and family games.  Not ski trip or Club Med experiences, but more like a trip to Krispy Kreme or dollar movie theater as a family.  

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We don't do huge on Christmas. We just don't have a lot of extra cash... especially now with two in college. It's my fault... I always spend the cash on classes or experiences or .... well, whatever. I am not a good planner, either. But we did start a tradition about 10 years ago that we all continue and LOVE, and it usually costs very little. Everyone makes something for one another. It's so much fun! It takes a little planning and sometimes results are not exactly *professional* looking, but these gifts are some of their most treasured possessions.

 

Over the years they have made clocks (inexpensive clockworks from a craft store...one a board decorated with scrapbook papers and mod podge, one made of a Lego plate and a few bricks), Hogwarts House Scarves, a personalized 'book safe', a primitive painting including a favorite Shakespeare quote, an Altoids tin red light flashlight for astronomy, a tea wreath for the year my dd1 started drinking it, very personal Lego ornaments made by ds for dds, a personalized Redwall calendar made on the computer, dd2 wrote & illustrated an awesome How to Train Your Dragon Odin's Day story for her brother when he was in LOVE with those books, last year for dd2 I found a small Christmas tree at Goodwill, and we all made a whole bunch of homemade Harry Potter themed ornaments for it including a knitted Hogwarts Colors garland, and set it up after dd went to bed. She cried when she woke up to it! There are so many more I am not remembering.

 

Really, they are the things they will take with them and remember, because they spent so much time thinking about what would make the others happy. I am sure they don't remember anything else we have given at all!

 

This is not the way my parents and our extended families did Christmas... we would get many, many gifts each year because I had 10 aunts and uncles and we all exchanged gifts with everyone. It was massive, happy, chaos. There were just so many people and packages! My kids.... one uncle on each side - one cousin (that they see. long story). That's it! So even if there was a chance of spending the same amount of money per kid, it still wouldn't feel like the holidays when I was a kid.

 

Merry, Merry Christmas! I hope it is full of peace and light for you.

 

Edited by Jen in NY
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you so much for sharing this. I've often wondered about donating without knowing the family.

 

I have a fairly large stack of boys' clothes in really good condition. Any suggestion for where to donate something like this? I'm (oddly) attached to my kids former clothes and I want the clothes to go to a home that will love them. (I know, I'm nuts.)

 

Alley

 

 

Ask a school teacher! 

 

They will know which families have kids who need those clothing sizes. They can also help you pass on toys - my kids often had awesome toys in good condition that had a lot of play value left. The toys that held up the best were often the ones we had bought used ourselves! They had been pre-tested, so to speak. 

 

They will also know which kids won't get many or any toys, and which families could really use a grocery card. 

 

We have gone through school teachers several times to "do Christmas" for a family. Every time except one, we have managed to get all the stuff to the parental figures so they could give it to the kids or give it from Santa or whatever they wished. That time, when the kids were there, we just told them we were helping Santa make early deliveries. They may not have even believed in Santa, but what the heck. 

 

We never had enough money to give anyone a nice chunk of cash to do it on their own, but I could find fabulous bargains throughout the year and slowly build up our gift closet. I miss the days when Target and Michael's had truly spectacular clearances! Per the teachers, one of the most important things to the kids was being able to come back to school after holiday and answer the question, what did you get for Christmas? Oh, I got a new My Little Pony, a lego set, and this pink notebook. 

 

I would not have been offended if anyone tried to bring something back, but honestly they would have been mighty disappointed if they had tried. We bought fun stuff, often with a pretty good wow factor, but there was no meaningful exchange value for sure. 

 

So, I view it as similar to the gift cards for the homeless thread: don't not do anything just because you can't do the best thing, even if 'best' could be agreed upon. 

 

And, when in doubt, ask a teacher!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

But as for cost - yeah, I think things like Lego are far more expensive than they used to be. Basically the value of a trademark has increased exponentially. We could choose not to participate, but good luck with that.

I dunno. My sons have received some vintage sets from their godfather, whose mother went through the tens of thousands of legos collected by 4 boys all through the 1980s and into the 1990s and put them all back together and bagged them by set. The original MSRP lego sets are all online. One of the sets they have received retailed for $50 in 1992. It has 317 pieces. $50 in 1992 is equivalent to about $86 in 2016. Looking at the more recent sets on a similar theme, $80 can get me sets with 600+ pieces. There are 400ish piece themed sets with licensing involved for $40-60.

 

Lego has, I believe, shifted at least some manufacturing from Europe to SE Asia.

 

In the 1980s that I remember, Lego was way out of reach for a lot of families. My son's godfather was raised in a family where dad was a well compensated professional with a doctorate.

 

There are some super expensive new Lego sets but Lego was never that cheap, especially after the advent of themed sets.

Edited by LucyStoner
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I dunno. My sons have received some vintage sets from their godfather, whose mother went through the tens of thousands of legos collected by 4 boys all through the 1980s and into the 1990s and put them all back together and bagged them by set. The original MSRP lego sets are all online. One of the sets they have received retailed for $50 in 1992. It has 317 pieces. $50 in 1992 is equivalent to about $86 in 2016. Looking at the more recent sets on a similar theme, $80 can get me sets with 600+ pieces. There are 400ish piece themed sets with licensing involved for $40-60.

 

Lego has, I believe, shifted at least some manufacturing from Europe to SE Asia.

 

In the 1980s that I remember, Lego was way out of reach for a lot of families. My son's godfather was raised in a family where dad was a well compensated professional with a doctorate.

 

There are some super expensive new Lego sets but Lego was never that cheap, especially after the advent of themed sets.

I know - Legos have always been quite a mint! I remember getting some technic sets back in the early 90's that were easily $30 each even then, and they were small and didn't involve a franchise cost like the Star Wars and other movie themed kits.

 

American Girl has always been expensive too, and the quality has declined in recent years. Ouch!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can see how an experience like this can color your view of Christians and "helping one another."

 

I maintained a mostly positive view of people, just a cynical view of people who give their their own egos and not from a giving heart. IME there are people like that of all faiths and beliefs- where giving is more about what they get out of it than anything else. Or they give crap they would never give their own kids as a "gift". You know, because beggars can't be choosers. Obviously someone wants to unwrap their child's broken leftovers, right? 😂

 

My favorite holiday memory was probably the year my parents got us each 1 nice gift each. I was 5 and not in full tomboy mode yet and wanted a particular Cabbage Patch Kid and there it was, under the tree. My older brother wanted a bike or binoculars that year and they got him binoculars but put them into a bike sized box and he fell in looking for the gift in all the paper. 😂 That was also one of the few years in the 1980s that my parents both had FT work at the same time, between many rounds of layoffs.

Edited by LucyStoner

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This thread has me thinking.

 

I wrote earlier about my skimpy Christmases as a kid. My parents lived on the east coast and ALL of the rest of the family was in Colorado or California. I met my dad's parents twice in my entire life, both times before I was 12. I honestly don't even know what they look like. (My father is estranged from his family.)

 

Almost the same story with my mother's family. Not estranged, but too far away to see. I've met my mother's family maybe 5 times ever, except for one aunt.

 

So, my parents were alone in getting me presents. If I had a couple of aunties and grandparents buying me presents, things would have been different. My grandparents would send little token gifts, but I was just this mysterious child they barely knew. So some people responding to this thread would have had bigger Christmases just because there would be family buying things.

 

Though of course, sometimes families don't all exchange gifts because it becomes too much. But for some people, the gifts were spread out over 5 different groups of people (2 sets of grandparents, parents, a couple of aunts or uncles, and so forth.)

 

And then some people have pointed out that some families spend nothing on the kids except at Christmas and birthdays. If the family would pick up a toy or two throughout the year, then they might not buy as much at Christmas. But if Christmas and birthdays are the only times the kids get stuff, then Christmasses and birthdays would be more lavish.

 

I remember having a conversation with a friend a few years ago that seemed bizarre to me. She said, "Well, you know Christmas is just for a couple of gifts, but birthdays are where you get lots and lots of things." I always thought everyone did it the other way around. Birthday was a couple of things, but Christmas was supposed to be huge. (For me, they were both small. My birthday is 5 days after Christmas, so my parents had to come up with double the presents all in the same week.)

 

Threads like these are so much fun. We get glimpses into all the different ways that people handle life. :)

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know - Legos have always been quite a mint! I remember getting some technic sets back in the early 90's that were easily $30 each even then, and they were small and didn't involve a franchise cost like the Star Wars and other movie themed kits.

 

American Girl has always been expensive too, and the quality has declined in recent years. Ouch!

Yeah the American Girl stuff was more expensive when it first came out. The dolls were about $100 or so then and now they are about the same but adjusted for inflation $100 then is a lot more now. We definitely never got any AG dolls (despite being very taken with the catalog) but my brother is addicted for his daughters, lol. I think my nieces have 2 each. Maybe more.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This thread has me thinking.

 

I wrote earlier about my skimpy Christmases as a kid. My parents lived on the east coast and ALL of the rest of the family was in Colorado or California. I met my dad's parents twice in my entire life, both times before I was 12. I honestly don't even know what they look like. (My father is estranged from his family.)

 

Almost the same story with my mother's family. Not estranged, but too far away to see. I've met my mother's family maybe 5 times ever, except for one aunt.

 

So, my parents were alone in getting me presents. If I had a couple of aunties and grandparents buying me presents, things would have been different. My grandparents would send little token gifts, but I was just this mysterious child they barely knew. So some people responding to this thread would have had bigger Christmases just because there would be family buying things.

 

Though of course, sometimes families don't all exchange gifts because it becomes too much. But for some people, the gifts were spread out over 5 different groups of people (2 sets of grandparents, parents, a couple of aunts or uncles, and so forth.)

 

And then some people have pointed out that some families spend nothing on the kids except at Christmas and birthdays. If the family would pick up a toy or two throughout the year, then they might not buy as much at Christmas. But if Christmas and birthdays are the only times the kids get stuff, then Christmasses and birthdays would be more lavish.

 

I remember having a conversation with a friend a few years ago that seemed bizarre to me. She said, "Well, you know Christmas is just for a couple of gifts, but birthdays are where you get lots and lots of things." I always thought everyone did it the other way around. Birthday was a couple of things, but Christmas was supposed to be huge. (For me, they were both small. My birthday is 5 days after Christmas, so my parents had to come up with double the presents all in the same week.)

 

Threads like these are so much fun. We get glimpses into all the different ways that people handle life. :)

We did not live near any extended family after I was 4. Occasionally my aunts and one uncle would send stuff and my grandparents on the middle class side of the family usually sent money. My parents usually used their money to pay for the tree and Christmas dinner and the money for us kids for some sort of gift. After we were about 12, they sent the money to us kids instead and I usually spent mine on shoes, lol.

 

One reason my husband and I try to keep it small is that with my family nearby and his mom sending a lot of stuff and generous close friends, if we do a lot it's just really overwhelming. Too much stuff and the kids stress out. There have been years the grandparents sent so much that we had to open it over several days or else my sons would get overwhelmed and meltdown.

Edited by LucyStoner
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We did not live near any extended family after I was 4. Occasionally my aunts and one uncle would send stuff and my grandparents on the middle class side of the family usually sent money. My parents usually used their money to pay for the tree and Christmas dinner and the money for us kids for some sort of gift. After we were about 12, they sent the money to us kids instead and I usually spent mine on shoes, lol.

 

One reason my husband and I try to keep it small is that with my family nearby and his mom seeing a lot of stuff and generous close friends, if we do a lot it's just really overwhelming. Too much stuff and the kids stress out. There have been years the grandparents sent so much that we had to open it over several days or else my sons would get overwhelmed and meltdown.

 

I remember the melt down days with my boys. They don't do it anymore, but when they were small I was able to afford a lot of things for them for birthdays or christmas because toddler toys were cheap. I learned after one time of getting too much not to do that. Or else to let them open things very slowly. A toddler or preschooler or even elemetary kid will open something and want to hang on to it and play with it. If someone would try to say, "Put that aside and open the next one!"my kids would get upset. They didn't want to put it aside! They wanted to play!

 

They don't do that anymore, but it sure made gift-giving occassions easier when they were small and I could get away with just a couple of things. And I'm sure that for some people, the sense of being overwhelmed never really goes away, so lots of presents would always cause stress.

 

I love these threads. People are all so different and fascinating. Sometimes on this site I see how very much alike we all are as humans, and sometimes I see how very different.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My parents probably spent about what is commiserate with today's spending that I do for my kids.  

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I dunno. My sons have received some vintage sets from their godfather, whose mother went through the tens of thousands of legos collected by 4 boys all through the 1980s and into the 1990s and put them all back together and bagged them by set. The original MSRP lego sets are all online. One of the sets they have received retailed for $50 in 1992. It has 317 pieces. $50 in 1992 is equivalent to about $86 in 2016. Looking at the more recent sets on a similar theme, $80 can get me sets with 600+ pieces. There are 400ish piece themed sets with licensing involved for $40-60.

 

Lego has, I believe, shifted at least some manufacturing from Europe to SE Asia.

 

In the 1980s that I remember, Lego was way out of reach for a lot of families. My son's godfather was raised in a family where dad was a well compensated professional with a doctorate.

 

There are some super expensive new Lego sets but Lego was never that cheap, especially after the advent of themed sets.

One thing my boys say about Lego (I don't know if it's true), but they say there are more pieces today because the sets include more smaller pieces than in the past -- instead of using one larger brick, several smaller bricks will be used.

 

But yeah, Lego has always been expensive. I do think that about 10 years ago, Lego had a significant price increase -- it seemed like all of a sudden, Lego was a hotter commodity than it had been before.

 

Sigh. I love Lego. I'm sad my boys are starting to grow out of it. I will have a mini Lego Star Wars Wookie Gunship under the tree for me. :-)

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh a funny note.  I remember asking for a walkman one Christmas when those were new.  My parents thought they were shoes and kept asking their friends where to get them!

 

HAHAHA!

  • Like 7

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We had very simple Christmases growing up. Not because my parents couldn't afford more, but because they didn't believe in a lavish Christmas. We did lots of wonderful things, like singing around the piano and baking lots of cookies, but the gifts were on the simpler side -- always some clothes, and maybe a couple of other things, and a family game. My parents rarely bought anything frivolous or trendy. I hate to say this, but many Christmases I was vaguely disappointed in the gifts. I was always hoping that last gift under the tree was for me. I'm kind of embarrassed to admit this, and I'd never tell my mom. She still doesn't like the way that Christmas is celebrated today. She grew up in Germany during and after the war, and her Christmases were so simple. A lot of handmade things, and maybe a piece of fruit or two. Nothing was wrapped -- each child had his or her own place in the living room where the gifts were placed.

 

Anyhow, I give my kids way more gifts than I got as a kid. I didn't start out that way, but that's the way things evolved. I think it's because of my own childhood disappointment. I just can't bear the thought of them being disappointed. We started cutting back a bit last year, and will continue along those lines this year, but I still try really hard to make sure they get several of the things that they really, really want.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree--fun to see how people live life differently.  

 

Realized through reading some posts--yeah--for today's teens: laptops, stuff for college, decent clothes and boots/shoes that will last...If you combine all of that, it can get pricey quickly!   And those are all things pretty much needed to navigate the modern life, in this country/culture anyway.  So maybe $500 is not so high after all, depending on how you look at it.  For some, $500 seems to be covering needs and basic items to "do life" while for others, it is more like "icing" in addition to those needs being met.  Anyway-- interesting thread.

 

One other point I saw up-thread and noticed recently in life: DC seem to value connection over stuff.  They don't necessarily notice or particularly mind what brands things are, in general.  They're young and they do like certain things, but they seem pretty content with whatever...  A grandparent remarked that they were worried that what they were able to do with DC might not match up with the "other-side" grandparents--experiences and gifts and such.  What I notice is that DC really get a kick out of spending time with and doing anything with all of their grandparents (exercising, baking, talking, etc.).  So, while an experience or gift is cool or fun, it really doesn't seem to matter as much as the craving they have for their grandparents' time and attention.  Those connected times are what they mention over and over again--much more so than the gifts that get put aside down the road.

 

I am trying to become more aware and intentional about mixing fun and connection into each day/week.  It's easy for me to get focused on busy-ness, especially in this season, and forget to relax, connect, and have fun with my family.

 

Edit: whoops--

Edited by vonbon

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

MIL has a huge bin of LEGO--like hundreds of parts and pieces?--from DH's and brothers' childhood (80's)...That bin gets pulled out and played with thoroughly at every family gathering!

 

So THAT was a gift that lasted!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

She grew up in Germany during and after the war, and her Christmases were so simple. A lot of handmade things, and maybe a piece of fruit or two. 

 

My dad grew up similarly--same time, near Germany.  An orange or banana was a big deal!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Christmas shopping is stressing me out. I feel like I spend too much on gifts, but I want to give my kids good gifts. I haven't added it all up, but I probably spend $400-$500 for each of my younger girls (oldest disabled dd doesn't want or need anything--she plays with her favorite $1 sand box shovels exclusively. She'll get a few things, but less than her sisters and she won't know or care). I feel some guilt spending so much, but on the flip side:

 

-they get stuff primarily at Christmas and birthdays

-a lot of the gifts are things they need anyway--pajamas, clothing, sports/activity equipment

-they enjoy opening real gifts and only get them from us--other relatives give them money which they don't really spend

-teen girls are more expensive than little girls

-I like high quality stuff--I don't want to spend less money for stuff that isn't well-made

 

When I was a kid, Christmas was always magical. I think my mom was a good gift giver. She didn't necessarily express her feelings in other ways, but she could always make you feel loved and special by what she gave. I remember that I believed in Santa for a long time because when he gave my sister and I the Barbie townhouse my mom said, "You know I would never give you something like that." (But she did, as Santa. Because she wanted to make us happy). I also remember that many Christmases in a row my big gift was a pair of ice skates, because figure skating was my activity and they were expensive. I appreciated having them, but also wished I could get something else for Christmas. Maybe that's why my kids get the things they need, but also some of the things they want. So for now, I'm still spending a lot on them. I don't have that many years left with them at home; I want to give them good gifts and enjoy these Christmases. Just wish it wasn't quite so stressful!

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 I remember that I believed in Santa for a long time because when he gave my sister and I the Barbie townhouse my mom said, "You know I would never give you something like that."  

 

Maybe that's why I believed for so long as well! 

 

We didn't have the townhouse, but we did have the Barbie plane* and the Barbie van and a truly horrifying amount of Barbies. Who all had fabulous clothing, because my mom was a seamstress and would use all the leftover bits of expensive material and trim to make us the envy of the neighborhood. 

 

*The one that actually looked somewhat like a plane, and I think even said Delta or United on the outside. When folded closed it kind of looked like a suitcase with a carrying handle. Note to Mattel: not everything Barbie related has to be pink! No one should live in a pink house and drive a pink car and fly in a pink plane while wearing pink clothes, it is abnormal and headache inducing and painful to the eyes and BORING. Escape the bondage of pink! Free Barbie! /end rant

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think we always had good Christmases- my parents spent a modest amount, but we were the only grandkids on one side so aunts and uncles went overboard, as did grandparents.  I think they felt like they needed to balance it out by doing less.  Now they are the grandparents and I don't mind when they over-do.  My 'budget' is $200 per kid, with the goal of $100ish for toys and $100ish for needs like boots, coats, bedding, clothes.  I don't stick to it strictly, and it varies b/c of so many kids- the younger ones don't get as much spent on them b/c things for older kids cost more.  I try to buy on sale- but this year has been the first one that I haven't had much luck.  My kids end up with 5-7 gifts to open from us, and that seems about right.  DH says his mom really went overboard, like they would have 20-30 things to open- I cannot imagine wrapping that many items! 

 

I am not opposed to getting higher $$ items if it is an item that will get a lot of use.  I spent $150ish on an art table 10 years ago that still gets daily use. 

 

I think it's fun to give undies, socks and pajamas- and my kids don't mind!  Every stocking has had a toothbrush in it, and every kids loves to see the toothbrush I picked for them.  This year I got them all pillows- so those are going to look like HUGE boxes under the tree.  I know they will spend hours wondering what is in them, and laugh when it's a pillow.    I got them towels, too.  They know they will have some gifts that are toys, others that are educational, and some that are things they need.  The more important thing is the magic that comes from shaking boxes, wondering what's in them, baking with mom, music and TV shows. 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

LOL about Lego in the 1990s.  I was thinking back to the 1970s.  My granny had a set for us to play with when we went over there.  I guarantee they were not super expensive if my granny had a set, especially one that she let us touch.  :p

 

I didn't mean to imply they used to be cheap, just that the ones "in demand" are much more expensive now because of the trademarks.  I was looking at some Harry Potter sets and about fell out of my chair.  Sure, I could buy the generic ones, but my kids wouldn't want those.  So other than a few small generic kits I bought when they were little, I have opted out of Lego.  (Ditto American Girl.)

Edited by SKL

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Speaking of undies - my 9yo just asked me seriously for underwear for Christmas.  She asked for undies in a past year also.  It's weird because she is far from deprived in the material department and has no trouble generating a long Christmas list without including underwear.  :P

 

But if she wants underwear under the tree, why not?

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a fairly large stack of boys' clothes in really good condition. Any suggestion for where to donate something like this? I'm (oddly) attached to my kids former clothes and I want the clothes to go to a home that will love them. (I know, I'm nuts.)

 

Alley

 

We have a neighborhood email list where we can post and ask for things and also give away things. A neighbor ask for gently used boys clothes for 5 and under for her child so I gave her my kids outgrown clothes. She offered to pay a token sum but I really didn't need the cash and its better than giving to Goodwill. Her relatives were gifting the more formal wear and she was looking for play clothes at gently used prices.

 

Our domestic shelters accept only new things at that time so we couldn't bring the clothes there even though our kids outgrew clothes so fast the clothes look almost new.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I always had a modest Christmas. I lived in a town that became a lot more expensive to buy a house in then when my parents did. Most families in my neighborhood had higher incomes then us. It was also a place where people where into brands and material items. Most kids I knew got a lot much more then me for Christmas. There were times when I wish I got as much as other kids but I think it actually was not a bad thing to have a modest Christmas and that it shaped me in ways that are positive. My parents did always do a good job trying to get stuff I like within their budget. My grandma on a very limited budget was very generous and another grandma gave us a check. I never had a Lego set or an American Girl doll or things that were expensive.

 

When you take in account inflation I do not think toys are more expensive now like it is for other categories. My kids get a pretty modest Christmas from us but they are getting stuff from more relatives so it feels like a lot. I had more aunts and uncles but none got us gifts. My kids are closer in age then my siblings were to me so altogether it feels like they have so much stuff.

Edited by MistyMountain

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When I was a child, I received a book, a toy and some necessary clothes for Christmas. The boys get one gift from each person, including the dog. That's it. The gifts vary in value from year to year, based on what would be nice.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, your kids are 13 it looks like.  Did you get Barbie and dress up clothes at 13?  Are you confusing your memories of Christmases when you a little girl vs a teen?  

 

On another thread I started about clothes shopping for my son who hates clothes shopping, people were telling me about how teen boys in general don't care much about clothes at all.  Could this also be a boy-girl thing?  Your teen boys will want different things that what you wanted as a teen girl.  When I was a teen, the boys were all getting Nintendos or Sega systems and the girls got clothes

 

Teens are near-adults with near-adult price tags. I don't view our Christmas presents as lavish or plentiful, but they are expensive. I don't know how I would "cut down" the OP's budget for teens. What is OP's husband thinking they should receive for gifts that would be under $50 each? I can't buy a pair of quality shoes for my kids that age for under $50 unless I buy from a thrift shop.

 

We will be spending $350 on our 14yo from our Christmas budget.  It adds up quickly in dollars but not in quantity:

  • $250 Wireless Beats headphones from Santa
  • $50ish clothes from a sibling
  • $10ish movie gift card for St Nick's Day
  • $15ish gift for Epiphany
  • $25ish stocking items

My 12yo wants an xBox, and Christmas is the only time we would consider buying such a large item. He's going to share it with his 9yo brother, but that present approaches $500 for just the console, extra controller, and two games.  If we weren't an xbox family, my 12yo would be asking for Lego train sets which are pricey as well. 

 

Our Christmas budget is $1800 this year all-in, but I can see that we will need to increase it as the kids hit the teen years.  Five years ago our budget only needed to afford little kid wants. If we were in the position to not be able to afford higher dollar gifts, we would go without.

 

I do wonder how other families buy the more expensive stuff if they have smaller Christmas budgets. When do kids receive Xboxes, phones, etc?  Large ticket items are kept for birthdays and Christmas in our family, but we also don't buy needs for Christmas. Sporting gear, bikes, etc are purchased throughout the year. Birthdays and Christmas are for wants. 

Edited by 2squared
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Are those now prices the prices now in today's dollars or the then prices adjusted for inflation? Because more than a few of the items can be found for far less than the listed now price. Like litebrite and easy bake oven, lol.

 

ETA: Ah, duh Katie. Scroll!

 

These are the prices adjusted for inflation. As you can see, many of those things today cost less than they would if prices had just rose for inflation. Some waaaaay less.

Edited by LucyStoner
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Speaking of undies - my 9yo just asked me seriously for underwear for Christmas.  She asked for undies in a past year also.  It's weird because she is far from deprived in the material department and has no trouble generating a long Christmas list without including underwear.  :p

 

But if she wants underwear under the tree, why not?

My older son is happy to find socks in his stocking. I think it's kind of funny but he is always running out so he appreciates them.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wen I was a kid, I think we got 3 bigger gifts and stocking stuff. Price was arbitrary depending on which kid wanted what which year. We had 4 kids in my family. One year, my brother got a boom box. That was more expensive. I might have gotten a less expensive doll. They just worked it out to make each kid happy, but not necessarily even or huge amount of gifts. I think Christmas was perfect when I was a kid.

 

For 10 years, dh and I only had one son. We got him a lot of gifts. Maybe not a lot of money, but like 20 gifts. Then came along our daughter and that trend continued. Somewhere along the line, I realized a lot of that stuff wasn't opened, used, or really even wanted. When our last child came along, I scaled it back to about 10 total gifts including stocking stuffers. Ya know what? My kids didn't really notice or care. I really think it is about getting them that one thing they really would like and want to have. Sometimes that thing is more pricey. And then that is a bit more of our budget. Sometimes that most wanted thing really isn't pricey though. I no longer feel the need to make sure I spent the same amount though. I just try to make sure they got something that will make them really happy. For instance, this year my 18 year old daughter pointed out a $30 leaning mirror she wanted. That will be her "happy gift" of all the other stuff. Not a huge expense. Our 12 year old son, will be getting my iPhone 6 as his first cell phone. I'm upgrading and gifting him this like new phone. That is more pricey, but we are at a point where a phone would be good for him and this will be his "happy gift". Every year is different though and I no longer stress over it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

MIL has a huge bin of LEGO--like hundreds of parts and pieces?--from DH's and brothers' childhood (80's)...That bin gets pulled out and played with thoroughly at every family gathering!

 

So THAT was a gift that lasted!

We have a bunch of DH's Lego pieces from the eighties, and they still work fine. A few have broken, like maybe the plastic is brittle after so long, but mostly they work. Our spaceman even has the crack in his helmet like in The Lego Movie. ;). But our kids have way more Legos than DH or my brothers did. Partly that's because we have more kids, period, and our girl has sets too, but partly because if we catch sales, Lego gets a pretty Big Bang for the buck. I still think they're expensive, and I'm never going to be able to get the Death Star (although I did stalk Amazon for an amazing score on the Millenium Falcon a few years ago -- and it was a gift to all the kids, not just one), but some of the cool Technic and character sets aren't necessarily out of reach for a special Christmas or birthday gift.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My parents had 5 kid, and I have 2, so they spent a larger amount (adjusted in my mind for inflation) but less per kid.

With so many kids very close in age, it it was like all the presents were for everyone. They weren't really, and we kids knew what belonged to who, but meant toys were things that were more fun if shared. And we had a big extended family get yo gether for Christmas.

My memories are more about the people and experiences such as getting a new special dress each year and playing with Grandmas "giant" nativity set.

 

My kids don't have that same feeling with only the two of them far apart in age and very little extended family. The cousins they do have are either much older or much younger, or live too far away, so there is not the same experience for them.

 

It makes me wistful for them thinking of what they didn't get to experience. Early on, I think I tried to fill that void with material things to try to replicate the excitement that I remembered. When we could afford it (or bought we could afford it) that was okay but a bit wasteful. A few years back, we had some changes to our financial status that helped to change all that. My kids were old enough that I sat them down and explained that Christmas was going t o be different due to money issues as well as not needing so much "stuff".

 

I am much more aware now, I think. I try very hard to get things that will really be used rather than stuff that will get used briefly because it looked cool, then put away and forgotten about.

 

I probably spend about $100-150 per kid now. That is a small amount to some, but it is plenty for us. Last year my DDs main gift was a kindle fire that I got for $35 on Black Friday and accessories to go with it. My DSs was 2Minecraft lego sets. As much as I hate shopping on Black Friday, that has saved us at times.

 

I do shop all year round for Christmas gifts starting with day after Christmas sales and I have always done that. I try to get many non-food stocking stuffers that way. I also supplement the budget by using airline, credit card reward points, online survey points to get stuff.

 

We don't buy the really expensive items for Christmas, and while my kids might say how they would love a $600 laptop or a$200 something, they know that is out of the budget.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Growing up, my Christmases were quite poor. My mother has no qualms against giving used goods as gifts and this was how the majority of our gifts came. Even now, as adults, the vast majority of gifts to us are second-hand or handmade. My mother also believes that the fun is in having a lot of stufff to open (or else that was a way to mollify herself), so she would wrap up a lot of pretty silly necessities or very inexpensive treats as gifts. We usually got pencils, folders, a pack of notebook paper, underwear and socks. We often got a giant candy cane, a giant Hershey Kiss, or a box of sugar cereal we usually didn't have. (Although I am actually considering doing the cereal thing because my boys will think it's hillarious to open their very own box of Lucky Charms!)

 

Mom also would do "clever" gift-wrapping tricks to both increase the visual impact of the gifts and prolong the "fun" of unwrapping. A tiny present was likely to be wrapped sequentially in increasingly larger boxes as a joke. A popcorn ball was a common stocking stuffer, no doubt because it took up a lot of space.

 

My extended family were not people of means, either, so any gifts coming from my aunts or grandparents were often small and insignificant. I remember a specific unicorn book my grandmother gave me because I think it was the only gift I really flipped over that came from her. My father's family -- i don't think we ever saw them for Christmas or any holiday. I'm rather certain there were never gifts from them (or to them).

 

I actually have a lot of unhappy memories about our paltry Christmases, although I have some fond memories as well. My mother made us matching pajamas for several years when we were small. Dad would take us to drive around and look at Christmas lights. We did always bake a bazillion cookies. So those were happy things. But it was definitely a stinger as I got into my teens and my friends would call me Christmas morning and report all the clothes, hope chest items, jewelry, hair and makeup goodies and games they got for Christmas. And I was trying to sound enthusiastic about the dime-store glass cat figurine I got. I might have said "crystal cat."

 

I have endeavored for my kids to have much more satisfying Christmases than I did. It's not that I make it lavish, but I always make sure each kid has at least one "WOW!" gift; at least one thing they can play with or use right away that is not practical or something they needed anyway. Sometimes they do get things they need, like snow boots or hats as well, but I never wrap up paltry things that are required for school anyway.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We did not live near any extended family after I was 4. Occasionally my aunts and one uncle would send stuff and my grandparents on the middle class side of the family usually sent money. My parents usually used their money to pay for the tree and Christmas dinner and the money for us kids for some sort of gift. After we were about 12, they sent the money to us kids instead and I usually spent mine on shoes, lol.

 

One reason my husband and I try to keep it small is that with my family nearby and his mom sending a lot of stuff and generous close friends, if we do a lot it's just really overwhelming. Too much stuff and the kids stress out. There have been years the grandparents sent so much that we had to open it over several days or else my sons would get overwhelmed and meltdown.

 

We had this eat times when the kids were younger.  I found it a bit upsetting at times, because while I really wanted to be gracious, I also had things I wanted to get for the kids, but I felt like it would be too much.  So I would pass on the lovely realistic kitchen set and they'd end up with some very loud electronic toy with poor play value instead.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Teens are near-adults with near-adult price tags. I don't view our Christmas presents as lavish or plentiful, but they are expensive. I don't know how I would "cut down" the OP's budget for teens. What is OP's husband thinking they should receive for gifts that would be under $50 each? I can't buy a pair of quality shoes for my kids that age for under $50 unless I buy from a thrift shop.

 

We will be spending $350 on our 14yo from our Christmas budget.  It adds up quickly in dollars but not in quantity:

  • $250 Wireless Beats headphones from Santa
  • $50ish clothes from a sibling
  • $10ish movie gift card for St Nick's Day
  • $15ish gift for Epiphany
  • $25ish stocking items

My 12yo wants an xBox, and Christmas is the only time we would consider buying such a large item. He's going to share it with his 9yo brother, but that present approaches $500 for just the console, extra controller, and two games.  If we weren't an xbox family, my 12yo would be asking for Lego train sets which are pricey as well. 

 

Our Christmas budget is $1800 this year all-in, but I can see that we will need to increase it as the kids hit the teen years.  Five years ago our budget only needed to afford little kid wants. If we were in the position to not be able to afford higher dollar gifts, we would go without.

 

I do wonder how other families buy the more expensive stuff if they have smaller Christmas budgets. When do kids receive Xboxes, phones, etc?  Large ticket items are kept for birthdays and Christmas in our family, but we also don't buy needs for Christmas. Sporting gear, bikes, etc are purchased throughout the year. Birthdays and Christmas are for wants. 

 

Probably they don't get those things for their kids.  The likelihood that I would ever buy an X-box or something similar is about nil.  And I'd have no qualms about buying sporting gear and such.  In fact this year two of my kids are getting skating helmets, and other years they've got (used) skates.  Those are fun things,so they can participate in fun activities.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Teens are near-adults with near-adult price tags. I don't view our Christmas presents as lavish or plentiful, but they are expensive. I don't know how I would "cut down" the OP's budget for teens. What is OP's husband thinking they should receive for gifts that would be under $50 each? I can't buy a pair of quality shoes for my kids that age for under $50 unless I buy from a thrift shop.

 

We will be spending $350 on our 14yo from our Christmas budget.  It adds up quickly in dollars but not in quantity:

  • $250 Wireless Beats headphones from Santa
  • $50ish clothes from a sibling
  • $10ish movie gift card for St Nick's Day
  • $15ish gift for Epiphany
  • $25ish stocking items

My 12yo wants an xBox, and Christmas is the only time we would consider buying such a large item. He's going to share it with his 9yo brother, but that present approaches $500 for just the console, extra controller, and two games.  If we weren't an xbox family, my 12yo would be asking for Lego train sets which are pricey as well. 

 

Our Christmas budget is $1800 this year all-in, but I can see that we will need to increase it as the kids hit the teen years.  Five years ago our budget only needed to afford little kid wants. If we were in the position to not be able to afford higher dollar gifts, we would go without.

 

I do wonder how other families buy the more expensive stuff if they have smaller Christmas budgets. When do kids receive Xboxes, phones, etc?  Large ticket items are kept for birthdays and Christmas in our family, but we also don't buy needs for Christmas. Sporting gear, bikes, etc are purchased throughout the year. Birthdays and Christmas are for wants. 

 

lol, they don't.

 

Ds has been very lucky to get hand me down electronics - he got his DS years ago from his older cousin - the kid burst into tears of happiness, no joke - and he got an X box from his father's cousin who was giving up gaming. 

 

Other families of fewer means I know have kids who band together to get one big gift eg two brothers getting one Wii U.

 

Phones are not so expensive - especially if you don't do iphones or smart phones. 

 

I can guarantee you there are plenty of families out there who just don't buy the mega expensive stuff. At all. Let alone at Christmas.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Are those now prices the prices now in today's dollars or the then prices adjusted for inflation? Because more than a few of the items can be found for far less than the listed now price. Like litebrite and easy bake oven, lol.

 

ETA: Ah, duh Katie. Scroll!

 

These are the prices adjusted for inflation. As you can see, many of those things today cost less than they would if prices had just rose for inflation. Some waaaaay less.

 

Those were also top tech toys.  Tech items across the board get cheaper overt time.  My current microwave, computer, and flat-screen TV cost a fraction of what they would have cost (even in actual dollars) a couple decades ago.

 

I would also note that "top" toys (i.e. new and impressive ones) are going to be on the extravagant end of things; most families of modest means will pass on them until they (or a copycat) are available for a lower price.  My family would not have bought any of the toys on that list - except, I did get "Simon" years after it came out.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We had this eat times when the kids were younger.  I found it a bit upsetting at times, because while I really wanted to be gracious, I also had things I wanted to get for the kids, but I felt like it would be too much.  So I would pass on the lovely realistic kitchen set and they'd end up with some very loud electronic toy with poor play value instead.

 

This was my dilemma.  If I wanted to stick to relatively simple, I would have to buy nothing.  I never did buy much, but there are things I want to buy for my kids!  Especially as they got to the age when they knew where each gift was coming from.

 

When I was a kid, all the Christmas morning gifts were Santa / later Mom & Dad.  Only one relative gave us gifts - that was my paternal grandma, and her gifts were more modest and given at a different time.  So the way I grew up was, the parents (and to some extent, older siblings) basically got to "be" Christmas magic for their kids.  I never got that with my kids.  Eventually I gave up the emotional attachment to that ideal.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We spend less per kid than either of our parents did when we were kids(not even adjusted for inflation). We have twice as many kids, less income than one set of parents and way more aversion to debt than the other set, not to mention the fact that dh and I lean much more towards minimalism. 

 

We would likely spend somewhat more if both sets didn't get them so much. They tend to snag all the big gift ideas. It can be a bit obscene really, although the in-laws have toned it down some.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

LOL about Lego in the 1990s. I was thinking back to the 1970s. My granny had a set for us to play with when we went over there. I guarantee they were not super expensive if my granny had a set, especially one that she let us touch. :p

 

I didn't mean to imply they used to be cheap, just that the ones "in demand" are much more expensive now because of the trademarks. I was looking at some Harry Potter sets and about fell out of my chair. Sure, I could buy the generic ones, but my kids wouldn't want those. So other than a few small generic kits I bought when they were little, I have opted out of Lego. (Ditto American Girl.)

Harry Potter sets are discontinued years ago. That leads to much higher prices for the sets available on the secondary market.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Harry Potter sets are discontinued years ago. That leads to much higher prices for the sets available on the secondary market.

 

OK but everything Harry Potter is expensive.  A couple years ago I wanted to get my kids "something" HP because they were so into HP.  The only thing I could find within my budget (and I'm not poor) was a couple of card games.

 

Similarly, I was thinking to buy some American Girl book sets, but they are way overpriced.

 

Basically anything that is a hot trademark tacks on an extravagant amount to the price tag.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Teens are near-adults with near-adult price tags. I don't view our Christmas presents as lavish or plentiful, but they are expensive. I don't know how I would "cut down" the OP's budget for teens. What is OP's husband thinking they should receive for gifts that would be under $50 each? I can't buy a pair of quality shoes for my kids that age for under $50 unless I buy from a thrift shop.

 

We will be spending $350 on our 14yo from our Christmas budget. It adds up quickly in dollars but not in quantity:

  • $250 Wireless Beats headphones from Santa
  • $50ish clothes from a sibling
  • $10ish movie gift card for St Nick's Day
  • $15ish gift for Epiphany
  • $25ish stocking items
My 12yo wants an xBox, and Christmas is the only time we would consider buying such a large item. He's going to share it with his 9yo brother, but that present approaches $500 for just the console, extra controller, and two games. If we weren't an xbox family, my 12yo would be asking for Lego train sets which are pricey as well.

 

Our Christmas budget is $1800 this year all-in, but I can see that we will need to increase it as the kids hit the teen years. Five years ago our budget only needed to afford little kid wants. If we were in the position to not be able to afford higher dollar gifts, we would go without.

 

I do wonder how other families buy the more expensive stuff if they have smaller Christmas budgets. When do kids receive Xboxes, phones, etc? Large ticket items are kept for birthdays and Christmas in our family, but we also don't buy needs for Christmas. Sporting gear, bikes, etc are purchased throughout the year. Birthdays and Christmas are for wants.

Umm I'd imagine they don't buy expensive stuff. My children pulled their Christmas money together last year to buy themselves a Wii U. They are blessed to have relative who like giving money. Even small amounts add up to a lot when 3 kids are putting it all into one pot.

 

This year they are getting a 3ds with a bunch of games only because someone gave it to us for free because their son was done with it. Normally, if they wanted that they'd have to buy it with their own money.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I do wonder how other families buy the more expensive stuff if they have smaller Christmas budgets. When do kids receive Xboxes, phones, etc? Large ticket items are kept for birthdays and Christmas in our family, but we also don't buy needs for Christmas. Sporting gear, bikes, etc are purchased throughout the year. Birthdays and Christmas are for wants.

 

We don't have an xbox or wii or other game system, and if we did, that'd be the ONLY thing we bought that year unless we got it used and at a discount. The kids do have phones because they do a lot of unaccompanied traveling throughout NYC, but their phones are basic dumbphones, and when the elder girl lost hers we didn't get her a new one, we just reactivated my old one on her line.

 

We might get the kids new bikes this year for Little Christmas - and then that will be the only thing they get for Little Christmas, because those are expensive. A bike is a want for us - not a need. (If they took better care of their bikes, or if they biked more often for commuting, then we'd prioritize differently.)

 

We will be spending $350 on our 14yo from our Christmas budget.  It adds up quickly in dollars but not in quantity:

  • $250 Wireless Beats headphones from Santa
  • $50ish clothes from a sibling
  • $10ish movie gift card for St Nick's Day
  • $15ish gift for Epiphany
  • $25ish stocking items

 

If we determined that the elder kid would be well-served by having a $250 set of headphones (which, omg), that would be the only thing she got from us for Christmas and Little Christmas combined. No stocking (well, we don't do that anyway), no chipping in to help her sister buy her something better (that comes largely out of allowances - we assess how many people the kids have to buy for, and budget between $5 and $10 for each person. If they want to spend more, they have to pay for that themselves), no St. Nicolas, no Little Christmas.

 

And to be honest, I can't imagine blowing $250 on headphones, even for Christmas or a birthday, unless the kid chipped in.

 

Your expenditures are atypical, and definitely not necessary. For goodness sake, this year we answered a Santa letter where the kid asked for pencils, uniform pants, and a present for his kid brother. What I could do if I had an extra $250 to spend on these other kids!

 

What is OP's husband thinking they should receive for gifts that would be under $50 each? I can't buy a pair of quality shoes for my kids that age for under $50 unless I buy from a thrift shop.

 

Well, let's see. This year the 11 year old is getting a camera, and that's about it. The 13 year old is getting a wig and a gift card, and that's it for her. (She really loves wigs, and has several fairly nice quality ones.) They both got also their new pjs, and the younger one got a new coat, and I suppose they'll each get a book, but I can't see us buying too much more than that unless we do decide to get those bikes... and we wouldn't be getting the bikes except their previous bikes were stolen. (But we might not get the bikes either. That might simply not be in the budget this year. We have the 11-year old's orthodontia to pay off, and we decided it's better to pay it upfront.)

Edited by Tanaqui
  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Teens are near-adults with near-adult price tags. I don't view our Christmas presents as lavish or plentiful, but they are expensive. I don't know how I would "cut down" the OP's budget for teens. What is OP's husband thinking they should receive for gifts that would be under $50 each? I can't buy a pair of quality shoes for my kids that age for under $50 unless I buy from a thrift shop.

 

We will be spending $350 on our 14yo from our Christmas budget. It adds up quickly in dollars but not in quantity:

  • $250 Wireless Beats headphones from Santa
  • $50ish clothes from a sibling
  • $10ish movie gift card for St Nick's Day
  • $15ish gift for Epiphany
  • $25ish stocking items
My 12yo wants an xBox, and Christmas is the only time we would consider buying such a large item. He's going to share it with his 9yo brother, but that present approaches $500 for just the console, extra controller, and two games. If we weren't an xbox family, my 12yo would be asking for Lego train sets which are pricey as well.

 

Our Christmas budget is $1800 this year all-in, but I can see that we will need to increase it as the kids hit the teen years. Five years ago our budget only needed to afford little kid wants. If we were in the position to not be able to afford higher dollar gifts, we would go without.

 

I do wonder how other families buy the more expensive stuff if they have smaller Christmas budgets. When do kids receive Xboxes, phones, etc? Large ticket items are kept for birthdays and Christmas in our family, but we also don't buy needs for Christmas. Sporting gear, bikes, etc are purchased throughout the year. Birthdays and Christmas are for wants.

I got a few "it must be nice" comments from one particular person re: my DH's pay and the amount of electronics my kids have. Quite eyeroll worthy moments actually, since:

 

1) DH is enlisted military - we're NOT rolling in the dough. She can look up his exact pay, if she wanted.

2) All of the electronics my kids had at that time were gifts from their grandparents, or they used mine and DH's stuff.

3) Her child had an equal amount of electronics - purchased by her!

 

Now that the kids are getting older and their wants are pricier and it's harder to to find enough "good" gifts to get them, my parents just contribute a portion so we can go together and get an even bigger-better wow! gift.

 

In exchange for the big-ticket items, they will not be getting much of their medium or small ticket wishes from their list. I'm perfectly ok with them getting items that are out of reach in their "budget" and allowing them to save to buy the $5 to $100 item themselves from their allowance and earned money. I think it that creates a healthy enough balance that my kind, generous children won't suddenly morph into entitled monstrous brats just because they got an expensive Christmas gift. ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We don't have an xbox or wii or other game system, and if we did, that'd be the ONLY thing we bought that year unless we got it used and at a discount. The kids do have phones because they do a lot of unaccompanied traveling throughout NYC, but their phones are basic dumbphones, and when the elder girl lost hers we didn't get her a new one, we just reactivated my old one on her line.

 

We might get the kids new bikes this year for Little Christmas - and then that will be the only thing they get for Little Christmas, because those are expensive. A bike is a want for us - not a need. (If they took better care of their bikes, or if they biked more often for commuting, then we'd prioritize differently.)

 

 

If we determined that the elder kid would be well-served by having a $250 set of headphones (which, omg), that would be the only thing she got from us for Christmas and Little Christmas combined. No stocking (well, we don't do that anyway), no chipping in to help her sister buy her something better (that comes largely out of allowances - we assess how many people the kids have to buy for, and budget between $5 and $10 for each person. If they want to spend more, they have to pay for that themselves), no St. Nicolas, no Little Christmas, no stocking. (We don't do stockings either.)

 

And to be honest, I can't imagine blowing $250 on headphones, even for Christmas or a birthday, unless the kid chipped in.

 

Your expenditures are atypical, and definitely not necessary. For goodness sake, this year we answered a Santa letter where the kid asked for pencils, uniform pants, and a present for his kid brother. What I could do if I had an extra $250 to spend on these other kids!

 

 

Well, let's see. This year the 11 year old is getting a camera, and that's about it. The 13 year old is getting a wig and a gift card, and that's it for her. (She really loves wigs, and has several fairly nice quality ones.) They both got also their new pjs, and the younger one got a new coat, and I suppose they'll each get a book, but I can't see us buying too much more than that unless we do decide to get those bikes... and we wouldn't be getting the bikes except their previous bikes were stolen. (But we might not get the bikes either. That might simply not be in the budget this year. We have the 11-year old's orthodontia to pay off, and we decided it's better to pay it upfront.)

This smacks of chastisement.

 

NOTHING about Christmas gift giving is necessary. If someone chooses to partake, they are allowed to participate in any way they so choose.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This smacks of chastisement.

 

NOTHING about Christmas gift giving is necessary. If someone chooses to partake, they are allowed to participate in any way they so choose.

 

Yes they are, but it's a bit clueless asking how other parents buy $$$ stuff if they don't do it at Christmas! It did come across a bit entitled. 

 

I don't care what other people give their kids. Perfectly nice families give $$$$ gifts and perfectly nice families give $ gifts. 

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
This smacks of chastisement.

 

As did their original comment that they just couldn't imagine how the rest of us get away with spending less than this for Christmas gifts for our kids.

 

NOTHING about Christmas gift giving is necessary. If someone chooses to partake, they are allowed to participate in any way they so choose.

 

Well, I certainly can't stop people from spending their money however they like. If I could, I assure you, our economy would be very different. (VERY different, and I, for one, would be much wealthier. Mwa ha ha ha ha!)

Edited by Tanaqui
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes they are, but it's a bit clueless asking how other parents buy $$$ stuff if they don't do it at Christmas! It did come across a bit entitled.

I can see that. Ok

 

I don't care what other people give their kids. Perfectly nice families give $$$$ gifts and perfectly nice families give $ gifts.

Yep. Very true.

 

And telling the poster her expenditures were atypical (really really not, IME) and unecessary was not perfectly nice.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...