joshua tells the story of driving his son and two of his son's buddies to a birthday party. the two other boys come from families with more money than theirs, and they started talking about the cars their dads drive. joshua could tell that the boy whose dad drives a bmw was getting jealous of the boy whose dad drives a corvette. the point is that it is in our nature to want more/ better/something else…no matter what we get or have. we may be some of the few talking about contentment, but i'd rather my girls receive that gift than the latest hot thing…every time.
anyway…i thought i'd plunk a few mentions of simple holidays here…for inspiration and moral support. :) it can be nice to hear about other families doing unconventional things at this time of year, i think.
rubyellen and ben give their girls each one gift + one "community" gift from them and one from santa.
caroline asks her family for gift certificates to a store where she wants something. those gift cards add up, so she can buy the more expensive item she actually wants in her curated wardrobe.
there is nothing under the tree at ann's house, but plenty of gift giving and celebrating.
when my nephews and my girls were younger, my sisters and i agreed to buy only for the kids and not each other. i would usually buy a book and some sort of candy to tie on top for each one, i think…or i'd knit them each a simple hat. simple and inexpensive. one year my sister broke the rule :) and gave each couple the gift of a movie (from their own movie drawer), microwave popcorn, movie-sized candy, and a 2-liter. it was a good gift and not too expensive…and it made us laugh looking at those old movies. we've also done white elephant gifts which worked great as entertainment and produced lots of laughter. most often there was no money spent, and it was funny to see some of those gifts reappear the following year.
rachel uses what she has…beautifully.
last year, bea's family rented out their beautiful home and used the money to fund their own holiday. they have also given their boys the zero-waste gift of a monthly adventure subscription. each month throughout the year they do something fun together…and it doesn't have to be expensive. they may also get some bulk candy on christmas day…and then go for a swim... in hawaii!
bill wrote a book (and an article) about his hundred dollar holiday tradition. it's a good one- check it out at your library!
i love seeing these ideas all together, because it shows a variety of ways do a simple christmas. let's create the holiday we want to have…one full of memories, laughter, and love.