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Nephews asking for money for Christmas - what to do?

(45 Posts)
GoAndDoSomeWork Thu 27-Nov-14 11:24:24

Not sure if this has been addressed already but I am in the process of finding out what all the nephews and nieces would like for Christmas and have had three requests for money so far. We already have resorted to sending money for their Birthdays and I don't really want to do it for Christmas.

My issues I think are I like choosing something for them (and getting a good deal for them within the budget - usually they've specified a general item e.g. headphones); I am never sure how much money to give; and gifts are more exciting than money where the only surprise is how much have you been given and do not leave anything to entertain you with for the rest of Christmas.

So should I put my foot down and say they need to come up with a better idea or I will think of something for them or do we just roll over and stick some money in an envelope?

TywysogesGymraeg Thu 27-Nov-14 11:29:54

How old are said nephews? Are they saving up for something that they'd like you to contribute to?

Teenagers prefer money above all else! If you think they might fritter the money away, then a gift card may be a better idea, then they'd have to spend it on clothes/music/cinema, or whatever you buy.

TBH, if they are teenagers, you're never going to get a present right, unless you take them shopping and they point out exactly what they want - which is a bit mercenary IMO.

MokunMokun Thu 27-Nov-14 11:30:42

How old are they? I think if they are older than primary school then money is fine.

MarjorieMelon Thu 27-Nov-14 11:30:51

I would say that you only give money for birthdays. I don't mind sticking a tenner in a card for birthdays in fact I prefer it but I personally don't like the idea of giving money for Christmas. Sil has started giving our children money at Christmas and told us to do the same but I'm continuing to give presents , otherwise we may as well just keep our money and spend it on our own children.

ErrolTheDragon Thu 27-Nov-14 11:41:41

Once they're beyond a certain age, gifts aren't necessarily more exciting than money if they're not the right thing. I can still remember a few deeply disappointing xmas presents. I always sent my DNs money once they were beyond the Lego stage. Yes, choosing presents is fun but gift-giving isn't about you, it's about what the recipent would appreciate.

AugustaGloop Thu 27-Nov-14 11:41:56

if you like choosing for them, then choose for them. If you want them to tell you what they want, then get them what they ask for (even if it is money). My DDs like getting money because they can save up for something and enjoy browsing and deciding what to spend it on, i.e. the excitement is not in opening the present but in thinking about how to spend it. They would not like to get money from everyone because they love to open presents particularly if they are surprises. But money from some people (or Amazon vouchers) is great.

AugustaGloop Thu 27-Nov-14 11:45:02

Also I don't think it is any more exciting to open a present when you know what it is (because you have been asked what you want) than it is to get money.
I also don't think they really focus on how much people give and judge them for it. They are as able to find a bargain to spend the money on as you are.

ErrolTheDragon Thu 27-Nov-14 12:03:17

Yes ... 'surprises' really only work for kids (beyond a certain age) where you know them well enough to see something and know that they'll love it. Which mostly means your own kids.

GoAndDoSomeWork Thu 27-Nov-14 12:18:15

They are late teens - a couple are saving up for something in particular which is fine. The other has a Saturday job and is not saving for anything in particular.

Maybe it's stems from my childhood - we were never given money by relatives and sometimes their presents were fab and sometimes a little off the mark but always opened with excitement and no question about the commercial cost. My mother would have fainted with embarrassment if we had asked for money. I think my discomfort with giving money is also partly what MarjorieMelon said about just ending up exchanging money which when families are different sizes makes you feel just like a bank rather than giving a gift to celebrate Christmas. Presents allow you to set your budget without having to reveal so openly how much you have spent.

But it would make shopping much quicker if we just gave money ....

Awakeagain Thu 27-Nov-14 12:24:19

We quite often got a Small token gift and then money
If you see something that you know would be perfect get that but otherwise i think it's ok for them have money and get something specific with it, there's much less to buy late teams

DilysMoon Thu 27-Nov-14 12:33:51

I'd go with the money if you've asked them and that's what they want. As an aside how long do you keep buying presents for? In our family we stopped receiving presents from aunties and wider family after we were 18 which seems fair enough to me.

crje Thu 27-Nov-14 12:36:09

Give them the cash & a £5 novelty gift.

I can barely think of a few bits to get my teens without having to think for others too

My mil does this , she buys to please herself . It's fine but kids would appreciate money more.

Coumarin Thu 27-Nov-14 13:02:05

I don't like giving money at Christmas but this year one of my nephew's is getting money as I'm sure that's what he'd prefer. To make it more of a present I've bought some chocolate and sweets to wrap up and a nice money card to pop the cash into.

Bowlersarm Thu 27-Nov-14 13:06:13

I don't think you should ask what they want, and then not give it to them when they tell you what they want!

Teenagers always want money. I normally put it in with a selection box of Christmas chocolate, or a novelty chocolate Santa etc so at least they have a parcel to unwrap.

Floralnomad Thu 27-Nov-14 13:09:56

I have a teen and another older DC and we have asked for money or Amazon vouchers from all the relatives this year , there is absolutely nothing they want or need and TBH anything they do want I will be getting them - it's very difficult .

NotCitrus Thu 27-Nov-14 13:17:29

Cash and a small novelty gift or book.

SirChenjin Thu 27-Nov-14 13:19:50

Late teens? Good grief, do them a favour and give them money - the present about the givee as opposed to what the giver believes they should have.

If you really don't want to hear the word 'money' don't ask them what they'd like for Christmas.

fuzzpig Thu 27-Nov-14 13:22:24

I don't think you should ask what they want, and then not give it to them when they tell you what they want!

I think that's the key really.

candykane25 Thu 27-Nov-14 13:32:04

I told my nephews no more money gifts after they spent the last lot on virtual money in the game shop. If they didn't ask for anything specific, they were getting surprises. They've accepted this and I've enjoyed picking things out for them, mainly from the bargain threads!

jennymac Thu 27-Nov-14 13:47:02

I just give my nephew money as he is at uni and doesn't have much spare cash so if he wants to spend it on clothes or a night out then that is fine with me. My nieces are younger so they still get presents which I chose myself unless their mum has given a hint that there is something in particular they would like.

TheFriar Thu 27-Nov-14 13:55:07

Seen that my 11yo has only asked for money for Christmas as he can't think of anything he wants/needs....

The problem is that your nieces and nephews probably already have more or less all they need...

unclerory Thu 27-Nov-14 14:12:08

Give them vouchers, we give our nieces vouchers, we only see them a few times a year and don't know them well enough to get something we know they'd like. I use to love getting vouchers as a present, especially book tokens.

You could suggest they set up an Amazon wish list so they get what they want, you get to spend what you want, and they get a present to open on the day.

Lucylouby Thu 27-Nov-14 14:18:30

We give all nieces and nephews and friends dc money. Normally by the time they get to 8/9/10+ There is very little they would appreciate in the price bracket I would want to spend, so it's cash from then on. I normally put a note in a tube of sweets or similar. I hate waste, so would much rather them use the money to get something they actually want than me picking something I think they would want and it sitting on a shelf and then being chucked away.
You've asked what they want, they've said money. There's your answer.
That said, I would be annoyed if I found out they had spent their money on virtual money for the game shop. I'd rather not know what they did with it if that were the case.

TywysogesGymraeg Thu 27-Nov-14 14:43:22

When we were young ANY present was welcome, because
a) people generally didn't have as much, so anything new was a bonus
b) there wasn't so much choice, so less risk of "getting it wrong"
c) there wasn't so much pressure to have the latest thing
d) teenagers were less grown up, and still largely dependant on parents to buy them things.
e) Christmas was still a religious festival, and not nearly so commercial

Different times, different presents. If they want money, give them money, or a gift token. Buy them a "little something" to open if it makes you happy - but be sure to get it right!

SirChenjin Thu 27-Nov-14 14:46:19

When we were young ANY present was welcome

Hmm...not sure I agree with that. A rainmate from Great Aunt Agnes every Christmas and birthday wasn't really that welcome...

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