Why We Don't Do Presents
Let me start off by saying I'm not knocking those who do exchange gifts/presents, especially with their little ones. Every family is different & I wanted to share why this is OUR tradition.
BACKSTORY: Matt & I have been together for almost 5 years, married for almost 4, & I can count the gifts he's given me on two hands (maybe one). Now don't think he's a selfish or terrible person. He's the kind of person that would rather invest in a memory or an adventure rather than get another "thing". At first, I didn't understand because all my other friends were receiving gifts every birthday, anniversary, holiday & I got nothing so I thought "maybe Matt doesn't love me that much.." WRONGO & on so many accounts. Mainly me comparing my relationship to others but that's another story.. After a year, I realized it. We bought memories & experiences for each other: plane tickets, nicer hotels & Airbnb's, dinner at random Yelp places, gas money for hikes, etc.
[Take our engagement & 'wedding' for example - Matt proposed with a Ring Pop, my ringset is my Momma's engagement ring & his Mom's first band (meaning > price tag) & we did a courthouse wedding. Cheap & practical. Efficient & purposeful.]
We contributed to our lives rather than our clutter.
Now with Jackson, it will be a little more difficult because of other kids. We can't just not give him presents on or for Christmas because it's what we want to do. All the other kids he'll play with will have gotten gifts from Santa & my baby gets nothing, therefore thinking Santa doesn't love him?? No no no.. We're still working it all out because he's only 1 but we'll probably have Santa's 'gifts' in the stocking & quality time with family. For example, we decided to start our Christmas dinner tradition of cheeseburgers for dinner. Why? Because it's what WE wanted. Ya'll know I don't cook & I'm not trying to stress myself over a massive meal :)
We will make sure he understands what Christmas is supposed to be about. Every Christmas kids movie has the moral objective of it not being about presents but the love & appreciation of family, celebrating with the ones you love. (Please don't get religious with me because I'm not here for it). I've watched Trolls Holiday & How The Grinch Stole Christmas every day in December this year - I got this. You're supposed to really enjoy that time with whoever you're spending it with. Cherish what you have because some may not have it.
As far as gifts we give him, he'll get whatever he 'wants' or needs throughout the year. Holding out for a couple days of the year to give a gift is so beyond dumb to me. Ask anyone - they'll tell you I feel the same about every other Holiday. Matt & I understand his grandparents will still get him things for occasions & we can't tell them not to (for some, it's the only way people know how to share affection - by giving things) but we can offer alternatives. Pay for an athletic class or athletic equipment, come visit, gift cards, getting something for him when we actually needs something during the year..
Bottom line being, as new parents, we decided to really question this tradition & if it's something we wanted to continue. When I fist made my IG post about this, I really thought I'd catch some backlash. But to my surprise, some Momma's reached out not only support my statement but to ask how I came to the conclusion. My advice: stick to your gut. Don't feel pressured to go along with something because this is the way it's always been or don't want to have to constantly explain. Your family is YOUR family, no one else's. People don't have to agree with it or even like it.
Your fam has your traditions. Keep telling yourself that & live it <3