One of our close relatives has stopped buying my DC birthday gifts (DC are all small) and acknowledging mine and DH's birthdays. I am pretty sure this is because I have gone from buying her expensive gifts (when there were 2 incomes and no DC) to a smaller gift (still £30 budget). Last year I told her that I wanted to tone down Christmas as it was getting really out of hand. I added up what we spent on food, drink and presents and it came to £1500. We have a very large family and lots of small DC and I needed to cut back everywhere as we just can't afford it.
This relative is coming to ours on Christmas Day and I wouldn't put it past her to not acknowledge my DC with a gift. I am not sure what to do. I don't know whether I should still get her a gift anyway. WWYD?
I would buy a small generic gift (we always have a couple of M+S scarves/bottles of port in our "present box" - forgot presents or that we had people coming toooooooo many times!) and you can see how things are when she arrives.
Personally any guest at Christmas would get a present here.
I'd get her something generic and keep it aside. If she doesn't give a gift to your DC then I wouldn't give it to her. I know you don't give to receive blahblahblah but that's what I would do, especially given that you're presumably hosting her on xmas day. A gift for your DC is the least she can do!
It's a balance. you have to buy 2 presents (one birthday one Christmas) and she has to buy upwards of 6 a year depending on the number of kids. She is probably a bit put out. That said it would be rude not give her a gift on Christmas day even if she doesn't come with armful of presents.
Yes if you feel you need to get anything then definitely go with a generic gift which, if not given to her at Christmas can be given to someone else. Nice chocs, a plant or a decent bottle of wine can be brought as a host/ess gift if you’ve been invited to friends.
I wonder though would you be better off addressing this in advance? Either by letting them know that eg we’re just buying children’s gifts this year or we’re doing small token gifts only? Tbh if you think she’s offended because you’re not spending enough on her then I wouldn’t worry about it at all as no matter what you do she’ll be discommoded!
Martel why would the Op be rude not to have a gift if this person comes empty handed?
If this person felt it was too much buying for Ops family she could have cut back to less expensive items or suggested something else but the fact her response to Op deciding to spend less suggests the woman’s issue is that she wants more expensive gifts.
If an adult relative is coming to you for Christmas surely she should be asking you what she can bring, or can you ring her up and say 'can you provide the wine/crackers/pudding/cheese/whatever'. At the same time you could say to her 'just to clarify, we've decided not to exchange gifts between adults, I'm sure you understand that it can all get a bit out of hand'. Don't mention the childrens' gifts - see what happens. Personally I always think children get far too many presents, so it wouldn't bother me, but it would bother me if an adult guest didn't contribute something towards the celebrations.
Our family always fall over themselves as to who is offering the turkey/wine etc etc etc
I would find it very odd not to take gifts to someone's house on Christmas Day. I would also give a gift to anyone coming to our house. Did I understand correctly that you exchange Birthday presents? If so, you could buy something you could give her for her birthday if you didn't want to give it for Christmas. Or something you could use yourself- if she drinks, you could buy a bottle of Prosecco, a bottle of Aperol and bottle of soda water, and print out the Aperol Spritz recipe (it's on the back of the bottle but would make it more obvious) & chuck in a couple of oranges. Or any variation on that theme
I don't think it is too expensive for her as her presents to my DC are quite small. Over the years I think I have spent over £1500 on presents for her including some amazing gifts. I just feel that now we are toning it down she thinks well sod you then, I am not getting your DC anything which I think is really mean spirited and immature.
I don't actually care because this is all saving me money but I just don't want to be red faced on Christmas Day. I have done generic presents in the past to tone it down but honestly, the look on her face you would think I had given her a box of soil.