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Anyone else trying to scale the present buying down this year?

(24 Posts)
Misty9 Mon 26-Oct-15 22:47:52

Last year dc were 8 months and 3. I bought way too much stuff. Nothing big, just lots of little things. This year I'm aiming for one big present each and stocking fillers, and a joint present from father Christmas (a game usually).

Anyone else trying get to scale it down? We could afford more but they just don't need so much 'stuff' and definitely not the knex and record player I'm trying to avoid twitching on it's only bloody October and I'm twitching! I'm going to fail miserably aren't I? sad

Dionysuss Mon 26-Oct-15 23:12:21

Last year they had so much, but most of it has been hardly used or not lasted.

This year I'm going for quality over quantity. They will all get a gift from Santa with a few stocking fillers. From dh and I: a book, colouring book and pen set, dvd, board game, cuddly toy and a jigsaw.

We have a big family, once relatives have given their gifts it overwhelming and we have nowhere to keep it all. I'm shopping from a list and hope to have it all done by November. When it's all done, it's done and I will not go near any shops. famous last words

MaryPoppinsPenguins Mon 26-Oct-15 23:17:17

Yes, I am!

We're in the process of trying to buy a house and as well as cutting back are trying to downsize the amount of sheer stuff we have! (A playroom that is overflowing with rubbish they never play with!!!)

I usually make Christmas about an shading pile of presents for the (three) seperate Christmas mornings we go to... But this year, we can't.

I'm a bit stressed about it though... I'm worried they'll be disappointed confused

MaryPoppinsPenguins Mon 26-Oct-15 23:19:00

'An amazing pile of presents'

Not shading!!

NeverNic Tue 27-Oct-15 00:40:11

Yes. At least I'm trying but my 3.5yo is so much fun to buy for. He gets so bored opening presents though. Looking at 3-5 presents for youngest and 6-8 for him, though most of the presents will be accessories for their main gift. They will also have a stocking each with a few little toys. I know this still sounds a lot though, but I'm finding it hard to restrain myself. Last year it was ridiculous how many things I wrapped - like pj's and duvet set which he had no interest in. I'm limiting gifts to toys and books only. Apart from buying their main present I'm really done buying for my children.

LittleCatInAOneBedroomFlat Tue 27-Oct-15 14:08:02

I am trying to be careful with what I buy, purely because our living space is so small.

I know it's going to be a squeeze trying to fit in all the stuff that other people buy, let us, so it makes sense for us to hold back a bit. Also our little one is going to be just under 2 at Christmas, so a little young to be requesting particular presents.

In theory, it should be easy to hold back on the present buying but in reality I do fine it quite hard! smile

Nevergoingtolearn Tue 27-Oct-15 16:09:55

I try and scale down every year but fail. This year is my first year as a single mum so things will have to be scaled down a little due to having less spare cash, also the dc's are getting older and the things they want are smaller and more expensive, there will not be piles of presents this year, probably a handful of gifts under the tree and a few things that they need ( clothes, slippers etc..).

Misty9 Tue 27-Oct-15 20:48:28

The thing I struggle with is, I know what my children like to play with so I would like to get them that. But last year was too much and ds was bored unwrapping and didn't really notice what the presents were. I know that ds would appreciate one toy a month more than ten toys at Christmas - but I can't justify giving him one toy a month!

oobedobe Tue 27-Oct-15 21:54:25

Yes I love Christmas and I love shopping a dangerous combination! I do feel in my heart that less is more so I try my best to be restrained about buying for the DC (age 7 & 3).

My tips are, create a bookmark folder or pinterest board which shows what you would like to buy them and also one for what you have already bought. Try not to impulse buy, I browse websites and add things I like to my bookmarks but after a day or two I often decide it is not worth buying or too similar to something the DC already have so delete it.

I try to cover a few bases:
From Santa:
Stocking fillers (we do sacks not stockings so more to fill, I tend to get 4-5 craft kits and small toys in the $3-5 range and some treats).
Big Gift:
Their big gift this year is a kid friendly tablet each (which I have asked relatives to club together to get them).
From Us:
Couple of medium size toys they have asked for each eg a doll, lego, playmobil etc
Couple of kids encyclopedia/non-fiction type of books (my eldest loves these)
A craft set or dress-up outfit each

I also get a new boardgame for the family to play together.

In addition to the above they will get a few more smallish gifts/vouchers from extended family.

Personally I believe that is LOADS (and more than many get I am sure, but also WAY WAY less than others).

I cut out the Christmas Eve hamper a few years back, we still do new PJs, hot choc and and movie/popcorn, I just don't present it as more gifts - Christmas Day is for gifts in our house.

I also cut out the expensive advent calendars (playmobil etc), we have a wooden house which gets filled with a small choc each per day. We have lots of Christmas books that come out each year, I maybe buy one more new one to add to the collection.

Now let's just hope I can avoid the dreaded Twitch! smile

storybrooke Tue 27-Oct-15 22:00:16

Trying and failing. Last year we went completely overboard BUT they loved everything and still play with lots of it daily, some we rotate. They just took their time unwrapping throughout the day and playing with what they wanted, some things they grew into. There may have been a few stragglers on Boxing Day too. This year they'll have around half of what they had last year but I'm confident they'll love it all, I told lo he could ask Santa for a present so he's beside himself with excitement that he knows he'll have a present on Christmas Day! Dd doesn't really get it yet.

I find it so hard to scale back but I really don't want it to be overwhelming or a chore, we go heavy with the Christmas train, crafts, baking, walks, etc before so December is a very exciting month before presents come into it, they'd be thrilled with one each and us to play with so it's my/our issue on the overspending! I do worry that as they get older they'd take it for granted, I'm not too sure what the right balance is yet though.

BlueStarsAtNight Tue 27-Oct-15 22:56:43

Mine are each getting one main Santa present that they've asked for plus stocking fillers, and about 3-4 under the tree presents from us. I could buy tonnes but they just lose interest in opening stuff after a while. I'm really trying to get my parents to scale back, as they always turn up with a sack (bin bag!) absolutely full of stuff, a lot of they'll probably only play with for 5 mins before leaving it cluttering up the room! We need to have a huge clear out before Christmas too.

recklessgran Tue 27-Oct-15 23:09:07

Yes,definitely cutting back.I have a tendency to get carried away and just keep spending until the shops shut on Christmas Eve.So,recently, I have been decluttering and selling all the unwanted stuff on e-bay.The money from doing this is going to be my entire Christmas spending budget.I am hoping that this will help to keep me in check and force me to make less, more considered purchases.I don't think anyone will really notice the difference as we have a large family and just enjoy spending time together,playing games etc.It's really not all about presents.[Well,that's what I'm telling myself!]

nocutsnobuttsnococonuts Wed 28-Oct-15 11:51:07

i am trying and failing aswell!

my dd's are so easy to buy for and everything i have bought so far i know will be used and loved. (maybe not straight away but will come out in the year!)

i have stopped buying cheap tat, especially the china stuff from the bargain threads! stockings cost me more but at least it lasts beyond the new year. eg i buy top trumps, little figures (moshis/lego men), knickers, socks, small official cuddly toys. i do buy a few disposable things like the balloons and glow sticks but nothing that there will be tears about if it breaks.

this year for the 1st time i am keeping an honest list of what i've bought and how much it costs (everything from presents to the chocolates on the tree)

popcornpaws Wed 28-Oct-15 13:32:45

I scaled down the amount of presents but not the cost!
My dd has a flat in the town she goes to uni so last year i tried to cut down on the amount we bought as she shares with four others and there just isn't room for everything.
Some stuff still had to be left at home so this year i'l be buying gift cards and makeup etc for her stocking, and probably mainly cash, but i hate the thought of there not being lots of nicely wrapped parcels.

GothicRainbow Wed 28-Oct-15 13:42:06

I'm really trying to scale it back this year. I have agreed with family that we will only buy for the children this year which has helped.

My DS is 2.5 and last year was completely overwhelmed by the amount of presents he had under the tree. This year we have planned a stocking and one big gift (play kitchen).

I have bought him a couple of other toys which will be wrapped under the tree.

My DH I've bought him 2 small gifts and that's it. Must say I'm nearly done with my Christmas shopping which is actually quite liberating! Just have to control the twitch now!!

Star2015 Wed 28-Oct-15 17:27:22

Yes, me!

I'm married to an older DH with grown up kids and two young grandkids. We go way over board with their presents, often buying more than their parents do.

I'm getting tired to spending so much and doing so many activities with them without any thanks from their parents (and they have now come to expect it), I'm not doing it this year.

No pants and less presents. We shouldn't have started it in the first place, I probably sound mean but we shouldn't feel we have to do more than their parents.

(Please don't flame me! smile)

Star2015 Wed 28-Oct-15 18:10:36

No panto not pants!! blush

Misty9 Wed 28-Oct-15 20:08:59

Ooh, just buy a packet of pants star grin ds loves pants and they're not cheap! Definitely agree that buying more than the parents is unnecessary - one of the reasons I need to scale our presents back is because dh family go a bit overboard on tat and I would rather buy him what I know he'll like, iyswim.

We're just sorting out the playroom and have lost some storage until we get some more sorted, so that may help with my restraint!

Bimblywibble Wed 28-Oct-15 21:34:55

OP 3 is too young for k'nex, it's lovely but fiddly stuff. My DS loves it at 6 but duplo is better for 3 year olds IMO.

Star, you don't sound mean at all. My kids only ever get 1 present for birthday and one for christmas from GPs, except when they were babies and got nothing at all!

Every year I overcompensate for my DC missing out with christmas birthdays, and relatives who don't bother with their birthdays because they're too close to christmas. I feel I need to make sure they have enough toys for their next year of development, and sometimes I feel on my own in providing that, so I overbuy. Last year was the Year Of Games and DC are still getting loads of use from them, plus at 9 and 7 they are not outgrowing things so quickly, so this year I honestly don't think they need much. Keeping to that in reality is the challenge!

Misty9 Wed 28-Oct-15 22:05:15

He's four now - is that still too young do you think? I'm on the STEM thread too smile

soupmaker Wed 28-Oct-15 22:11:23

Yes. DDs are getting bikes from Santa. I got the balance bike second hand of Gumtree months ago. It's never been used and looks brand new. Currently scouring sites for a bike for DD1 who is 7.

They will get a load of useful stuff in their stockings as well as some small gifts.

That is it. They get loads from other family and friends. Last year they got loads and it was too much. Less is more in this house.

Bimblywibble Wed 28-Oct-15 22:51:49


Personally, DS wouldn't have got into k'nex younger than 6 I think, but:
(1) he has been late to a lot of things - didn't have the dexterity for playmobil until 5/6 either, for example
(2) he likes to do the complicated projects, and prides himself on doing the last one in the booklet with the most stages. He won't just make up his own things. Children who do could probably start younger.

Misty9 Wed 28-Oct-15 22:55:36

Ah, well ds has also been late to lots of things - he is getting his first playmobil this Christmas after finally getting into small world play with octonauts - and he also only follows the instructions like his parents

Another one for next year then maybe... smile

Bimblywibble Thu 29-Oct-15 00:07:22

Stick to your guns! Or ask other people, this is just one person's opinion.

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