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What do you think about the four gift rule?

(104 Posts)
Cupcakeicecream Wed 03-Aug-16 14:14:35

Something you want
Something you need
Something to wear
Something to read

What do you generally feel about this. I have never followed this myself but I have tried to cut down more and more each year. It doesnt really make a difference to me as my child has a december birthday so is inundated with more gifts.
I think the idea is quite good if you have a small house or if your child gets lots of gifts but only plays with a select few. At christmas I do consider books and clothes to be gifts whilst some people see them as a necessity. My child obviously gets books and clothes all year around but the books I buy tend to be chosen by my child and are a treat as they would be more expensive or something I wouldnt normally buy the same goes with the clothing such as a favourite character or a particular brand of clothing.

SideOrderofChip Wed 03-Aug-16 14:23:38

i do it for DH

Artandco Wed 03-Aug-16 14:25:10

We do this.

One main gift

Then something to wear, need, want, read and eat go in stockings.

nellifurtardo Wed 03-Aug-16 14:26:00

I like the principal of the idea but I like to give about 10 presents and a stocking. I also don't really like giving clothes as presents as I buy these all year (in the sales as much as possible) I live in a small house and manage with the 10 presents.

Star2015 Wed 03-Aug-16 14:26:07

I like it!

wigglesrock Wed 03-Aug-16 14:48:35

No it's not my thing at all - my kids get three or four things - if they want four Disney princess dolls - that's what they get. I've 3 kids - one of them in particular would read all day and night, the oldest one wouldn't, reading for her isn't particuarly enjoyable - why would I get her something to read, if it's a present for her. She'd rather have 4 presents relating to a sport she plays - not sure how that would fit into the reading/needing category.

To be very honest, I always find that rhyme to have a touch of the sanctimonious virtue signalling about it.

peggyundercrackers Wed 03-Aug-16 14:51:34

sorry I wouldn't follow those rules. I don't think getting something you need is a good present. what if I need an iron? if someone gave them that as a present they would soon find an imprint of said iron on their forehead.

ApocalypseSlough Wed 03-Aug-16 15:01:27

Peggy that's exactly the sort of thing DH and I do give each other. But our 'something you want' tends to be something luxurious you wouldn't buy yourself + book/ music+ nice wearable so an iron amongst that batch would be very nice!

NotCitrus Wed 03-Aug-16 15:13:47

It worked quite well to convince dcs' they weren't going to get every single toy they'd asked Father Christmas for, which in Reception was pretty much every toy in the world!
Thankfully by Y1 they understood money at least as far as "if the price has three digits, you aren't getting it", and we negotiate on big presents that aren't surprises - everything else is an extra that doesn't matter if they like it or not (ILs love bringing large arrays of random objects, so usually there's one hit and some useful things among the 25 to 35 items per child...)

Artandco Wed 03-Aug-16 15:50:00

Need doesn't need to be an iron. For example last Xmas we got ds1 so
New watercolour paints he needed as the others run out. So that's as a need but he also would have liked and wanted it ( he uses them every week since)

He also needed a new winter hat, so he got one in stocking under 'wear', but that could have been need also

Their main gift is usually something bigger like a new bike or similar

NoCapes Wed 03-Aug-16 15:53:40

4 presents at Christmas just feels a bit...tight to me

70isaLimitNotaTarget Wed 03-Aug-16 16:21:17

i do this for the Stockings/Christmas Eve Hamper

CEH has PJs/Robe (wear)
New underwear (need) though DD likes the Festive underwear fgrin
Jar of sweets (eat)
Annual (read)
And a bathbomb

The Stockings used to be very well wrapped (as in loads of tape) little things to keep them busy on Christmas morning.
Now it'll be earrings,wallet,keyring, earphones

DS likes Something to Save, XBox Game, More to Save, Money to Sit in a Jar in His Room, Money to Save fgrin

Artandco Wed 03-Aug-16 17:06:38

No - how is 4/5 gifts tight? How many gifts can one child need? They get presents every Christmas and birthdays, plus from some relatives. Mine still have most gifts they have bought since tiny as most have been the type you add to and last years ie brio train set. So the house would be overrun with stuff otherwise. I have two children so that's two large gifts they could have between them each Christmas, plus again a gift on birthdays

HelenaJustina Wed 03-Aug-16 17:15:15

We did it for the first time last year, really helped structure my shopping. Each DC gets one present from parents and one from each of three siblings so 4 gifts in total, which means it worked well. Will be doing the same this year and encouraging DH to think along these lines for me!

NoCapes Wed 03-Aug-16 17:32:22

I just said it would feel tight to me having my kids wake up to 4 presents on Christmas morning
It doesn't feel tight to you and that's fine

SatsukiKusakabe Wed 03-Aug-16 17:38:19

I think it's ok as a guide for stocking fillers (and mine usually get more than one item in each category) just so they get a variety of things.

But they get several proper presents which are all things they want, I would only get need or wear if it is different from usual and coincides with being something they particularly desire, football kit for e.g, but mine are at the ages where if they want toys, they get toys. There'll be plenty of years ahead for buying them sweatshirts, trainers, make-up and dressing gowns for Christmas, and it'll come soon enough, but that is just my view. I agree with not overloading them and reining it in a bit, but also think it's a bit too restrictive and not particularly festive to stick to a set of rules. Unless these are the rules:

Something from Lego,
A shitload of playdough,
Batman and his car,
And some sweets in a jar.
A bear, a dolly,
A toy shopping trolley -
Something huge I let you choose
And a stack of plastic you won't ever use.
But once it's been wrapped
So what if I think it's crap;
It's what you want to see
Piled under the tree

NickyEds Wed 03-Aug-16 17:53:59

Mine will be getting lots more than four. They are young though, they will be 18 months and just turned 3 (December birthday)so some of them will be relatively inexpensive. We're thinking of maybe getting them a play kitchen to share then they'll have probably 15 ish each as well. None of their presents from us will be clothes, we just buy them, but they'll get some clothes from gps and aunties and uncles. It would be different if they were older and wanted more expensive things or if we were very short of space.

nancy75 Wed 03-Aug-16 17:57:40

I hate it for children. If they need something it's my job as a parent to buy it and I also dont see something to wear as a gift ( unless it's a princess dress or a Spider-Man suit) if my dd needs new clothes she gets them, I don't make her wait for Christmas

FayaMAMA Wed 03-Aug-16 18:00:35

I didn't know people still did this! I thought it was very 90s! We all do it within our family, not just for our children. We only do it at birthdays though, not Christmas. I don't know when we started doing it, but I believe we did it as my parents went through a time of relative economic growth when we were young and they got carried away one year buying gifts and were worried about spoiling us. One of my siblings got a car as her 'need' once though, and the rest of us are still angry about it grin shock

For example, for my brother's 18th birthday in June, I got him a bottle of Jack Daniels, a kettle (he's moving out this month), a (really beautiful) casual shirt and a copy of Animal Farm. It sounds dull, but he got a lovely collection of things overall. We make a list of stuff that we 'want' online so we actually get the right things. It works (better then when we used to write written lists as kids). Even my parents do it now for themselves.

I had a friend once who's mum would wrap up anything at Christmas time so they seemed like "extra presents" (like new toothbrushes, face wash, underwear, pyjamas, socks, books, hair products, etc) but in reality they just used to end up spending 20 minutes on Christmas day opening things they are simply bought every other month of the year....

BikeRunSki Wed 03-Aug-16 18:01:50

That's what I do for stockings! "Wear" is normally socks, pants or t shirt, with the cartoon character of the moment.

WhoKnowsWhereTheTimeG0es Wed 03-Aug-16 18:02:03

I think it's a bit worthy/joyless. We try not to go overboard as both DCs birthdays are close to Christmas, but clothes don't often feature as Christmas presents and neither do "things you need". Books do though.

MaryPoppinsPenguins Wed 03-Aug-16 18:04:06

I don't like it, it never seems like enough... I like the awe of a massive pile of toys under the tree grin

Gowgirl Wed 03-Aug-16 18:06:01

Only 3 in this house, one for each wise man...

Twowrongsdontmakearight Wed 03-Aug-16 18:09:53

I've never heard of that. DC get lots of little things at Christmas, nowadays nothing more than £30ish. I think they'd be gutted at only a few gifts (and so would I!). I'm always shock at magazines with ideal gifts at £100+. That would be a one-only birthday present for us.

When DC were little the unwrapping was the fun bit so they'd get 10-15 presents but totalling less than £50.

CedarSpring Wed 03-Aug-16 18:13:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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