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Friday, October 24, 2014

31 Days 14: Christmas List

Christmas and toys.  No matter how you slice it, if you have kids, you will have toys.  Last year, I was asked what Little Man would like for Christmas several times.  I made the mistake of telling everyone, he likes Lego's and tractors.  We literally got like 50 Lego/tractor related items.  Some were even duplicates.

Grandma called us the day before Christmas and asked us to bring our truck when we came the next day.  My response was, "oh, do you need help moving something?"  Nope, she had just gotten him so much that she knew the car wouldn't hold it all.  You can't make this stuff up!

While we are SO blessed to have such a wonderful, loving, generous family for our boys, but I don't have any desire to break my neck, so I returned a few of the duplicates and some of the redundant block sets and put the cash in his piggy bank.  He never noticed the difference, he was only 1.

Well, this year, I know he will know.  I'm not going to outsmart that kid.  So, I knew we had to do something different at Christmas time.  But what to do?  How to answer the inevitable question, "what do they want for Christmas?"  Not to mention, since we have Shark Baby now, we have 2 boys that have almost every baby toy known to man.  It's overwhelming.

The real challenge here is a non-tacky way to do this.  I thought about the whole, "money for their college" thing, but it seemed tacky, and we've done books instead of toys, but now we have a TON of books.  I wanted to do a donation Christmas, but all family members want to buy them a toy.  Even though they don't need them, even though I don't want them, even though what they really need is clothes, there's just something about giving a baby a toy that they open and immediately play with that is those who do not have to live in the mountain of toys.  This is a true "first world problem."  I don't want to deprive my family of the joy of giving to my children, especially since Little Man is always so grateful.  I can't make a claim on that, it's just his sweet personality.  So how do I deal with this?

Well, since I know that people want to buy them gifts, and if I don't tell them what the kids would like we will end up with a bunch of stuff we already have, I went ahead and made a list of some good, mostly educational, toys that we don't already have.  I started with a Pinterest page where I linked some items that I knew they would love.

There are some pros and cons to this.  First, anyone without a Pinterest account can only look at the page for a couple seconds before being prompted to create their own account.  Wait, what, everyone doesn't already have a Pinterest account?!  I know, crazy.  What's up with that, Pinterest?  On the pro side, people can comment on an item to note that it's been purchased.  No duplicates!

Before you ask, I thought originally about creating an Amazon registry, but it seemed tacky to register for Christmas gifts for your kids.  Also, with Pinterest I can add intangibles like zoo tickets and Kiwi crates to the board.

I think my last resort is going to be to write a blog called " Christmas List 2014" that lists some great options for Christmas gifts for any baby or toddler, and send people that link instead.  I won't avoid duplicates, but I'm thinking if we get any this year I will bring Little Man to a charity to donate them, so he can feel the joy of giving too!

How do you minimize the toy avalanche that comes with a very blessed Christmas?

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  1. I love this idea. The challenge for me neither of our families have Pinterest and some no computer! I know!!!! So, I have thought of printing up my list and dividing it so no duplicates. It is hard no matter what you do.

  2. Oh, thankfully my family is open to suggestions for kid gifts. We have spend too many years overwhelmed by gifts were hardly used. Because we also homeschool I often suggest books, art supplies or educational activities.

  3. Yes, the Xmas gift conundrum! And now that I have teens, it's even harder. I've never been a great gift buyer either, which makes it tough!