Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Christmas Gifts

I've heard some things on the news about this being a better Christmas, economically speaking, for most and that spending was up and such. Maybe it's because I live in the midwest and we are always a couple of years behind but I have seen much more effort to lighten Christmas financially than previous years. I wonder if anyone else has some observations about that this year.

When it comes to budgeting, I don't do so well. Most of the adults in our families this year have decided not to exchange gifts. That does save us a lot of money but it's still expensive enough.

There are a bunch of kids in the family that we still get gifts for. This year instead of buying toys that will get played with for a few minutes before being lost in the giant toy piles that these kids already have we decided to get them books. Hopefully when they grow up they will have fond memories of the books they read in childhood rather than 'that toy that broke 5 minutes after playing with it'.

I'm also really hoping that Michael gets some books for Christmas. We definitely need a few more to mix things up around here.

I also made each of the kids little string backpacks and put their books in there. So I'm giving them a little something extra that I hope that they'll enjoy and I don't have to wrap their gifts now either!

I had a 2, 4, 6, and 8 year old to make bags for. These are really simple to make and take about 15 mintues each (although I'm sure that a more seasoned crafter could do them more quickly). I made the size of bag in the tutorial for the 2 year old and made each bag after that 2" longer for every 2 years older and a little wider because the size in the tutorial is just about right for Michael (and the 2 year old that I made it for) to wear but way too small for the older kids.

I also saw this tutorial for a flat iron travel case and wish I had an excuse to make it right now because it looks so easy and fun, but I've got enough else to do. But if anyone is looking for a handmade idea....

I'm a little lost as to what to get Michael for Christmas. We ordered him this walker because he's definitely at that stage. I'm thinking about making him some felt blocks or balls or something. I know he'll get a mountain of gifts so I don't want to get him a bunch of stuff, but I feel like since it's his first Christmas we should get him some *special* gift and I'm at a total loss as to what that should be. We did order a personalized Baby's First Christmas ornament that I'm really hoping gets here by Christmas but other than that... eh.

Anyone else out there want to share what was on their holiday shopping lists?


Sophie said...

Cute bags! I really like that idea, I'm gonna use it the next time I have the chance.

Michelle said...

The bags are really cute!! I love when K gets books and he does as well. He actually asked for several this year.
Our list was mostly arts and crafts items, and very limited toys which was a nice change from last years "i want" list. His big want was an art case and TRU had a really nice wooden set that is giant. He's going to flip.
I think the christmas that K was a little over 1, we got a lot of blocks, chunky trucks, and books. The baby I watch is majorly into the chuck the truck toys right now. They are chunky cute cars and trucks. Also wheel pals, which are animal shaped things on wheels. really cute.

meggo said...

I love the books and bag idea. We've done that a few years for my nephews and niece. They all get way too much crap... more books are always nice to have.

Annelise isn't getting anything exciting, but then again she'll only be 7 weeks :).

She's getting a savings account, three Christmas books, 2 everyday books, and a decorated box with my and Dh's infant pictures and a recipe for German dumplings in it (each Christmas, she'll get a family memento and a family recipe to put in the box... it's a tradition we're starting). If we can find some classic wooden ABC blocks, she might be getting those too... but that's it. I intend to keep future Christmases just as simple. Kids really don't need as much stuff as our society impresses.

Stephanie said...

I am loving the idea of simple Christmases! I wish our families would catch on and do simple as well, especially since we are moving on in our ttc journey, which is going to be more expensive than just plain old BDing. Cute bags, by the way.

Jessica White said...

We decided a while ago how we would handle Christmas: Adults don't get gifts if they have kids. All kids get a gift (ranging from 10-25$ depending on our relationship with them).
I always give a preference for books as gifts. My MIL has been making fabric bags for 15 years to wrap gifts...I have probably 60 in my attic...they make it so much easier and faster to wrap presents.

In our house: Mom and Dad get 1 present each (around $100-120)...Kids get 3 presents (up to $150, whatever is saved goes into their savings)(1 biggish toy [from Mom and Dad], 1 small toy from Santa, and a book).

I love those bags you did...they look great!

Michelle said...

Ooooo thank you for the flat iron case link.
I needed this badly after straightening my bangs the other morning and trying to pack it right after :)