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Small present pile - pressure to get more

(61 Posts)
HighwayDragon1 Thu 26-Oct-17 15:31:59

This is going to sound ridiculous so bear with me please.

We've bought DD a laptop for Christmas, but this means she'll get much less to unwrap. How do I not buy stuff for the sake of it? How important is "the pile" in your house? For the last 7 years she's had a massive pile to unwrap, because her main presents are usually around the 50/60 mark not 310 I just feel so guilty!

Does anyone else get the guilt? I knew we are in an incredible situation that we can afford a lot, and some are scraping together to give kids any kind of Christmas and that makes me feel worse!

I'm having a pity party right now! Tell me, how many gifts do you give? (Excluding stocking)

MamaOfTwos Thu 26-Oct-17 15:42:40

Could you get her something big but cheap if the visual size of the pile is important? Bean bag to sit on to use laptop? Dressing gown? Blanket? Something bulky but relatively low cost

PJBanana Thu 26-Oct-17 15:43:04

How old is your DD? If you’ve bought her a laptop I assume she’s old enough to appreciate the value of it as a single gift?

I would just buy a couple of small extras e.g. her favourite sweets/snacks, maybe a cuddly blanket or something for her room, and a couple of books. Basically, bulk it out with a few bits that are relatively cheap.

Rainyboooooo Thu 26-Oct-17 15:43:55

I second getting a beanbag! That’s how I’ve bulked up the piles this year. Cushions also go down well.

kayls37 Thu 26-Oct-17 15:48:58

I'm feeling the guilt as well 😞 My ds is 10 and his main present is an iPad, he has also asked for PS4 games at £50 a game, where as my dd is 6 and she has loads in comparison because her individual gifts aren't as expensive. I would say my 2 are used to a large pile as well, so I know I will buy more than I probably should smile

Viserion Thu 26-Oct-17 15:53:46

What PJ said! Old enough for her own laptop is old enough to understand relative value.

My DS have asked for a new Xbox to replace their ancient secondhand grinding to a halt one. A new latest model one with a couple of games will be around £500. They are 7 and 12 already understand that if we decide to get one, there will not be much else to unwrap.

We don't 'do' present mountains anyway. Seems to be a modern social media competitive parenting driven phenomenon to me!

jollygoose Thu 26-Oct-17 15:57:41

selection box, nice underwear, bath stuff, doesn't matter about the size as long as its a wrapped parcel.

wobblywonderwoman Thu 26-Oct-17 16:01:30

I would buy practical stuff you would buy otherwise buy (PJs, toiletries)

You could wrap a large box in fancy paper and fill tissue paper and put in little bits and pieces from the pound shop. Stationary / baking stuff in poundland. She may like that.

But yes - she would know it is expensive

ChilliMum Thu 26-Oct-17 16:04:17

I am in the same position dd is having a laptop. We don't have much disposable income so it will be all she gets (more than we usually spend on Christmas presents)

Ds is 7 and will have a massive pile as he has asked for smaller, cheaper items and wont total as much as dds as we can't afford to match (will hopefully make it up to Ds in a few years when he wants something special).

I was hoping relatives will pad it out for us but my parents are getting her a rucksack which she has asked for. It will be nice and big but they usually get 1 present and then books, pj's, cd etc but the rucksack is expensive so it will be just that.

I know it is what she wants and we have discussed the fact that there will be no little presents but I know her little face will be so disappointed on Christmas day once she has opened her 2 gifts by 6.30 and it will break my heart.

Pibplob Thu 26-Oct-17 16:10:56

Chill mum - what about a selection box as an extra - £1 in pound shop. Is there anything you need to get her anyway that can be for xmas? Things like new underwear / nice bath stuff / hair stuff?

LikeTheShoes Thu 26-Oct-17 16:11:25

She won't be disappointed, she'll be busy setting up her new laptop!

SadieContrary Thu 26-Oct-17 16:18:10

When I was about 13 my parents bought me a computer. When we were opening presents my gifts were things like new underwear, pyjamas, selection box and a couple of books - my younger DB was opening a bigger bundle of gifts of much higher value and it never occurred to me of the financial difference, this all took about an hour, til I got to my final envelope which was a floppy disk titled ‘look in the spare room’ (yes, it was THAT long ago haha)

What I’m trying to explain is that I was just happy as a kid to be receiving gifts and wasn’t disappointed to have been given less before I found out my ‘main’ gift.

MuddlingThroughLife Thu 26-Oct-17 16:22:19

Dd1 wants a lap top this year too and dd2 wants a tablet but im thinking of getting her a chromebook. My plan was to get laptop and tablet or Chromebook and stockings. Then I was going to get just a few bits to open such as a smelly set, perfume and that was it. However we've had a really shit year this year, I've been in hospital for most of it with I've blown my budget!

I know presents are not important in the grand scheme of things but I want to spoil them a little bit, they all deserve it and understand it's a one off.

chocatoo Thu 26-Oct-17 16:22:27

We are in the same position but DD already has the laptop as we all agreed she needed it sooner rather than later!
I plan to get stuff like toiletries, tights, undies, etc ie stuff she needs.

chocatoo Thu 26-Oct-17 16:22:28

We are in the same position but DD already has the laptop as we all agreed she needed it sooner rather than later!
I plan to get stuff like toiletries, tights, undies, etc ie stuff she needs.

Pancakeflipper Thu 26-Oct-17 16:24:09

I think a laptop and stocking is just fine --but I'd be looking to see if there's stuff in their wardrobe they are about to outgrow and be replacing hoodies/socks etc in the guise of gifts knowing I'd be buying them anyway.

HighwayDragon1 Thu 26-Oct-17 16:33:36

So DD will be 7, nearly 8 on Christmas day, she's getting the laptop mainly for school work, their homework is all online now and her tablet just isn't up to it.

She will know the value and understands the value of stuff.

Thesmallthings Thu 26-Oct-17 18:41:16

Ds1 is getting a laptop for his birthday next month and a big box of jelly beans.

He'll know it's exoensive. But I to would be tempted to pad it out.

I tend to do big big presents for birthdays and smaller ones for Christmas.
This year I'm doing a treat box. Cans of coke. Popcorn Pringles all the good stuff that I don't tend to let them have often and it'll be all theirs no need to share as a present.

XiCi Thu 26-Oct-17 18:58:38

If she's only 7 does she actually want a laptop? Sounds like its something you just think is needed for school. If that's the case I would definitely be buying a few other fun presents if you can afford it

DelurkingAJ Thu 26-Oct-17 19:02:15

This is a problem old as time if it’s any comfort. I remember my DM quietly taking me aside on Xmas day as I had far fewer presents for exactly this reason and I fell about laughing at the idea that it mattered (given I liked my presents) and that (at 14!) I couldn’t spot this. I did think it was very sweet that she was worried though.

DelurkingAJ Thu 26-Oct-17 19:03:30

The way we bulk things out is to buy things they need and if needed in the summer I would just buy (so new slippers, a new dressing gown etc).

ArcheryAnnie Thu 26-Oct-17 20:52:44

Agree completely that if she's old enough for a laptop, she's old enough to understand that it trumps a big pile of tat.

Do you still do stockings? Because in ours we have chocolate coins, a selection box, nuts, character socks and pants, and a book, plus something tiny like a keyring. That's all good stuff that's a pleasure to open, most of it doesn't stay around as clutter after the day (if my DS hasn't eaten the selection box before breakfast and isn't feeling a little ill as a result, it's not xmas), and it serves to satisfy the desire for a bunch of little things to coo over as well as the big present.

ArcheryAnnie Thu 26-Oct-17 20:55:30

but I know her little face will be so disappointed on Christmas day once she has opened her 2 gifts by 6.30 and it will break my heart

She really, really won't have a disappointed face, ChilliMum, she will be too busy setting up her laptop. (And if she did have a disappointed face, then that would be a problem as it would indicate that she's spoilt, which I can't imagine she is at all. So don't worry.)

FlowerPotMum Thu 26-Oct-17 21:02:21

My two DDs want laptops. I'm going to get them an ikea £16 desk for them to go on.. Possibly even build and wrap them up! Plus a spinney chair.. And some pound shop desk bits, paper clips etc.
At this age they know the value.

TheWorldIsMyCakePop Thu 26-Oct-17 21:11:11

I do one from us and one from Father Christmas as well as a stocking. On top of that we let them buy each other a little something and they get something from grandparents.

At that age it sounds like the laptop isn't something she wants as much as you think she needs, so can you get something not too expensive that she'd like such as Lego and or some clothing bits or a Lush/Claire's voucher so she can go shopping herself.

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