Author Topic: What to do with Gifts-Xmas AND Hanukkah !?  (Read 1921 times)

Lepetitange3

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What to do with Gifts-Xmas AND Hanukkah !?
« on: June 30, 2017, 10:02:44 AM »
So, I plan early for the holidays and I'm looking to remake my budget and the expectations this year.

We have 4 children and celebrate both Christmas and Hanukkah (8 nights), so effectively I have 9 days of gift giving for the children.  I've read all the other advice lines on holiday giving and that will work for family/friends/spouse....but most of my children are little.  They are used to getting Hanukkah gifts and gifts from santa on xmas morning.

In the past, we did 2 gifts a kid per night of Hanukkah (1 toy and 1 book) which I am thinking we will be cutting down to just 1 item, which I don't think they will notice.  I'm having good luck so far sourcing some of this pre-owned (I have an 8year old girl with a Lego affliction $$$$- anyone looking to offload sets your kids are done with are welcome to PM me).

So what do I do for Xmas?  They're used to having crazy xmas morning.  Granted, I spent a lot less than their peers parents because I keep a list and scout the whole year to secure their gifts, but I'm trying to start tapering down and giving them less.  I also have the issue that we want Christmas and Hanukkah to feel relatively equal in "weight". 

And yes, yes, I know reasons for the seasons and we do all that.  And I know we all have varying judgement on gifting etc, what I'm hoping for is not to devolve into values debates and instead hoping for concrete suggestions from anyone who's willing on how you gift and what you gift for kids?  I have the full range too- teenager, grade school, prek and newborn.

Thanks and appreciation for any suggestions!!

plog

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Re: What to do with Gifts-Xmas AND Hanukkah !?
« Reply #1 on: June 30, 2017, 10:16:45 AM »
Quote
...I'm looking to remake my budget and the expectations this year... They're used to having crazy xmas morning... I also have the issue that we want Christmas and Hanukkah to feel relatively equal in "weight"... I'm hoping for is not to devolve into values debates and instead hoping for concrete suggestions from anyone who's willing on how you gift and what you gift for kids?

Honestly, this sounds like the value debate is already going on inside you.  You want to lower expectations and costs, but at the same time you seem to want to meet your children's expectations.  So which is it?  Those 2 things are in direct conflict, you are going to have to choose one.

I think if you are going to tone down the gift giving you start laying the foundation for that now.  Let them know, things are going to be less lavish this year and to expect a great christmas, but one less focused on material things.  Have them prioritize their lists with the understanding that lower priorities probably aren't happening. 

Blazin

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Re: What to do with Gifts-Xmas AND Hanukkah !?
« Reply #2 on: June 30, 2017, 10:32:09 AM »
We have focused on experiences.   For example, the promise of special parent/kid outing to a sporting event.  We also, have increased consumables.  We generally pack healthy lunches for school, but have gotten special snacky lunch foods as presents.  We have also cut way back on gifts overall and had a discussion with our kids and they haven't complained at all and the holidays seem no less magical. Another idea, might be to trade books with another family that way your kids can get new to them books.

Lepetitange3

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Re: What to do with Gifts-Xmas AND Hanukkah !?
« Reply #3 on: June 30, 2017, 10:49:28 AM »
I like the trade book idea!  We've been going to the library every week. 

Re: values, I guess I want it both ways.  I want to tone it down but not have it be disappointing.

I'm FIRE so I could spend money on the kids all day long, but I'm trying to stop doing that so much/as much.

I do have a list problem, we have never had cable so my kids don't tend to want things.  Literally, my 8 year old asked for a snowflake for Christmas the year she was 5.  (Parenting win- found a beautiful and inexpensive snowflake necklace on Etsy)

My kids like blankets, so I'm considering running up a few from fabric I mostly have already.  Anyone have crafty type things that go over well with the younger set?

Cranky

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Re: What to do with Gifts-Xmas AND Hanukkah !?
« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2017, 10:55:27 AM »
I don't think that gifts have to be crazy expensive for young kids to be wowed - I'm thinking of some students of mine whose family ate superhealthy, and their grandparents gave them boxes of poptarts at Christmas (with parents' permission.) Those poptarts were treated with true reverence! LOL

We pretty much always did the 3 gifts/3 magi thing with our kids - their heart's desire, something to read, something to wear. If you have multiple kids, it still makes a satisfying pile under the tree.

BabyShark

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Re: What to do with Gifts-Xmas AND Hanukkah !?
« Reply #5 on: June 30, 2017, 11:38:38 AM »
My family did both growing up and it's likely me and my husband will do something similar, but Christmas will be at Grandma's since the kids will be Jewish.  My mom always had a theme night for Hanukkah and they were usually practical gifts. Night 1 we all got PJs, Night 2, we all got a board game, Night 3, a new school outfit, things like that.  Keep them consistent for each kid made it a little easier on her I think.

zhelud

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Re: What to do with Gifts-Xmas AND Hanukkah !?
« Reply #6 on: June 30, 2017, 01:12:08 PM »
Wow- I grew up celebrating both Xmas and Hanukkah, and my parents would give us one gift the first night of Hanukkah and that was it. Maybe some Hannukah gelt the other nights.  They would save the other gifts for Xmas.

Now I am married to a Russian guy and their big tradition is to give gifts for New Year's. So now my family has 3 gift-giving occasions in the winter. Plus one of my kids has a December birthday.  So we really have to ration the gifts carefully!

CindyBS

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Re: What to do with Gifts-Xmas AND Hanukkah !?
« Reply #7 on: June 30, 2017, 01:26:56 PM »
Tickets to a place you would have gone anyway?  Museums/zoos/movies/performances?  I think an 8 year old can appreciate that.  Younger kids not so much.

terran

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Re: What to do with Gifts-Xmas AND Hanukkah !?
« Reply #8 on: June 30, 2017, 01:44:18 PM »
Are you Jewish or is your spouse. I Always thought "whoa, 8 days of gifts! That's like christmas time 8!" According to my (jewish) wife, Hanukkah really wasn't as big a deal in her family as Christmas is for many people and they got pretty minor gifts -- and not from their parent every night since other family members would "sponsor" some of the nights. According to her there are other jewish holidays that are much more culturally significant like passover and yom kippur.

Not that any of this helps with the expectations your kids now have about Hanukkah, but I thought it might help give you some perspective if you aren't the Jewish part of the family. Or maybe my wife's family is just weird.

Lepetitange3

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Re: What to do with Gifts-Xmas AND Hanukkah !?
« Reply #9 on: June 30, 2017, 02:03:24 PM »
It's the husband who's Jewish.  His family is OUTRAGEOUS compared to ours.  But so is mine for Christmas.  Sigh.  I have good kids, they don't usually want a ton of stuff like I said.  And compared to other family and the kids they know, they already get less.  But especially as I've come into MMM, it still just seems like soooo much.  And I'm the oldest of 7, so in addition we have all my siblings gifting the kids too and so on and so forth.  And I also have 1 kid with a December bday. 

I'm trying to find a less is more balance that also doesn't have the kids coming to the tree Christmas morning and feeling like they did something wrong because Santa/us parents didn't bring as much as the years prior.  My 8 year old is very kind so I've been toying with the idea of telling her that this year some of the money we give Santa for presents we are going to donate to charity instead and let her pick the charity.  Although, my kids already clear out toys for toys for tots every year during the holidays too.  My 4 year old and newborn won't notice.  The teenager I can just hand cash to but he's also the type to nickel and dime comparison to last year's haul.   

All of this is obviously privileged/first world problems *eyeroll* but you know it's your kids.  You want to delight them or give them everything you both had and never had. 

Blazin

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Re: What to do with Gifts-Xmas AND Hanukkah !?
« Reply #10 on: July 01, 2017, 07:52:37 PM »
My kids have also done Heifer international instead of getting a present. My sensitive, super generous son got way more enjoyment from knowing he helped improve someone's life in a tangible way.   I think donating to a charity is a great idea!