Kids don't want a "homemade" Christmas

Discussion in 'Countryside Families' started by QBVII, Dec 7, 2006.

  1. QBVII

    QBVII Well-Known Member

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    I told my daughter a while back we'd be having a "homemade" Christmas.
    She didn't say much of anything. Now that we're discussing the tree and other plans, I've reminded her of my plan to exchange only "homemade" gifts.

    She and my son have let it be known that they don't approve.

    I'm absolutely not caving into their materialistic demands for expensive gifts. I never spent THAT much on Christmas gifts, anyway; but I've never done all homemade gifts.

    My question is: what should I do? Should I go ahead and MAKE gifts, knowing ahead of time that they won't like or appreciate them??

    Or.....make mostly handmade gifts and "supplement" with a few trinkets.....? I don't know what to do --- you know how kids are. They want big, pricey presents for Christmas. I'd hate to labor over handmade things, and not have them appreciated. I think that would really hurt my feelings. In fact, I KNOW it would. My daughter wasn't pleased with her birthday gifts, which is what gave me the idea for this in the first place. :Bawling:
     
  2. Snowdancer

    Snowdancer Well-Known Member

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    What about setting a monetary limit and letting them give you a list of items that would be within that limit? You could surprise them with one of their desired items but not overspend since you set the $$ limit.;)

    I don't know how old your children are but it's hard to get kids 7-10 yrs old to fully appreciate the homemade concept especially the first time it's implemented. Maybe they'd be more receptive to mostly homemade if they got one of their less expensive desired items/toys. :shrug:
     

  3. caroline00

    caroline00 Well-Known Member

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    How old are your children? Are thier hearts set on something special/particular? Do you have projects for them to work on that they would enjoy to give as gifts to other family members?

    Is this just your desire? Was it a family decision? Is this decision budget driven? Is it nostalgia driven?

    I might reconsider my decision depending on what some of the above answers are. There are probobly more things to consider that I havent thought of.
     
  4. Cheryl in SD

    Cheryl in SD Living in the Hills Supporter

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    How about you go ahead with your plans for gifts from you. But have the kids use a set limit & get presents for each other. We have done this the last two years. Each child gets a day out with mom sometime in Nov. to get the sibling they drew a present. They have just $10.00 to spend so they have to be creative. They also get a small gift for dh. Then dh takes them all to get one gift for me. Nothing major for dh & I, but they really enjoy it. As they get older we might do the homemade gift from them too. Right now they love the day out alone with mom & getting to shop.
     
  5. birdie_poo

    birdie_poo Well-Known Member

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    As someone who doesn't celebrate and am not a Christian, the first thing that popped into my head was that your children have forgotten why you celebrate. It seems to me that they have gone beyond their religion and more toward wht's in it for them.

    Before you get upset, though, give them the chance to explain why they want to do it their way and see if it really has anything to do with the holidy, or what they can get out of it.
     
  6. QBVII

    QBVII Well-Known Member

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    My daughter is 12 and my son is 9. Well of course, my son asked for a Wi Fi, new video game system but I basically told him unless he can convince me that he needs it, I'm not getting it because he already has 3 systems: here, he has a GameCube and Nintendo 64. At his Dad's he has a PS 2.
    My daughter has mentioned a few things she wants.....

    I suggested the "handmade" Christmas because when my daughter had her twelfth birthday, she opened her gifts and you could tell she was disappointed!!! She didn't get enough, or evidently; she didn't get what she wanted. That hurt my feelings........it's ALWAYS been difficult because girls families go out and rent a skating rink and throw a big shindig every year. I think that's going overboard. The ONE year I reserved the skating rink, they messed up and lost the reservation and we didn't get to do it...........it's just a bad time; I feel like no matter what I do, it's never enough --- but on the other hand, I've never gone wild like other parents do, I've never rented a room or anything for a birthday. We have cake and open gifts; if there are kids around, they're invited inside to share cake. I just never made a big production out of it and I could see that she was crestfallen about it, which bothers me; but I don't feel like going out and spending a lot of money and making a big production because she expects that --- when I was growing up, we had cake and presents for birthdays. People didn't rent skating rinks and stuff like they do now.
    So that's most of the reason for the handmade thing --- I didn't feel like she APPRECIATED what she got for her birthday.

    Am I being "mean?"

    I don't just want them to get so caught up in the gifts that they forget what Christmas is all about.
     
  7. AngieM2

    AngieM2 Big Front Porch advocate

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    QBV

    Why do you want to use your time (which is valuable) to make them something they will not like, want or appreciate. YOU are worth more than that.

    They sound very spoiled in some manners.
    sounds as if you are separated or divorced (dad's place comment), difficult position.

    Maybe they need to spend the holiday working in a soup kitchen so they will appreciate what they have.

    I don't know, the mommy in me wants to kick their seats and tell them to appreciate you and what you are trying to do. And be glad to get ANYTHING.

    Angie
     
  8. LvDemWings

    LvDemWings Well-Known Member

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    I once knew a family who got each child 3 gifts. One for each wiseman. The children in return were asked to buy or 1 gift each to represent the gift to the baby Jesus. That gift was given to a charity of the childs choice. The family opened gifts just after midnight and spent the day helping serve meals at a homeless shelter. That to me combined the best of both worlds and it made it important for the children.
     
  9. QBVII

    QBVII Well-Known Member

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    Well I don't. I don't want to bother - what's the point, if I already know they don't want it?

    They aren't really spoiled kids in comparison to other children. I've never spent as much money as most parents do when it comes to Christmas and birthdays.
    I just feel like even THEN, they want more.....I don't know ...their stepdad says to let them get one fairly "nice" gift each from me, and have the rest handmade.

    This entire thing was my idea. I thought it would go along with the homeschooling/family thing I'm doing, just to try to make everybody closer and that sort of thing. :angel:
     
  10. Terri

    Terri Singletree & Weight Loss & Permaculture Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    At that age, they want shine and sparkle and toys.

    Yeah, make some of the gifts, but when you are 9 years old a plastic action-figure trumps a hand-knitted scarf. It is just the way things are. :shrug:
     
  11. Rxnwl

    Rxnwl Well-Known Member

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    My kids are 23 and 27. We had a homemade Christmas when they were8 and 12, they hated it and have never forgotten it. I wanted to do it because I was really in the homesteading mode, I guess a lot of it was nostalgia driven, but they also hated goat milk and homemade bread. I would go ahead and buy them a few things they want if you possibly can, because they wont like the homemade stuff and you will hear about it years from now. Kids look at things real different then we do.
     
  12. AngieM2

    AngieM2 Big Front Porch advocate

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    I think I read in Classroom Forum that you are recently starting the homeschooling....

    so, they are not changed over mentally yet. Your hubby's idea sounds pretty good for this year, and you have all year to get them into Little House on the Priarie and family night type of mindset...

    Whichever you decide, good luck.

    and Merry Christmas,

    Angie
     
  13. caroline00

    caroline00 Well-Known Member

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    what about homesteading types of gifts?I know we are getting leather working tools. patterns and leather and we are also getting a couple of woodburning and woodcarving sets for family gifts. Our children are that age, but have always been homeschooled and very rural... but they love having projects that they can pick up and do and have a nice finished product. I am also thinking of getting a pottery wheel and clay for a family gift.

    If they will take to it... busy is good for children and next year they will be able to make nice gifts for others using what they got this year.
     
  14. FUNKY PIONEER

    FUNKY PIONEER No I don't smell Funky

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    It seems your kiddos have the reall case of the gimmes. I wold buy presents and then take them to donate them to needy children. Or take them around to and have them give gifts to random people on the street. Let their gift be that of the lesson of what the true meaning of Christmas is, they will never forget it.
     
  15. donsgal

    donsgal Nohoa Homestead

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    Well, yoiu don't say how old your kids are. But here is what I would do. I would make up a list of chores around the house and assign a monetary amount to each chore, for instance "Taking out the garbage $1, Making your bed $.50, Washing Dishes $2, etc". Then I would tell them that you will keep track of every chore that is completed between now and Christmas, and how ever much they have "earned" during that time, you will match it an they can pick out one gift from that money.

    Once kids understand that they must WORK for the money to buy presents with, their perspective changes significantly.

    My guess is that they won't want to work so hard to get what they want. It's too bad they don't appreciate the homemade gifts. Kids are like that sometimes, it takes time and maturity to understand that items made with love are far superior to those purchased at a store.

    Donsgal
     
  16. caroline00

    caroline00 Well-Known Member

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    oh I dont know. Christmas is such a fun time for children. They look forward to it all year. I would really try to get them things within your budget that they will like.

    Unless you give them nice gifts other times than birthdays and Christmas I would do whatever I could do. Ther is nothing wrong with looking forward to gifts on gift giving/getting occasions... they are children, let them be children.
     
  17. QBVII

    QBVII Well-Known Member

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    I think I'm going to go ahead and get gifts, within reason.
    They have been through a lot of changes the past couple of years. They've had a lot of coping to do and they have done very well. They're very good kids, I'm proud of them.
    They aren't any more selfish than other kids their age and my daughter amazes me at times with her emotional maturity.
    I think I'm going to get them gifts and whatever else I want, if I think of something in particular that I am sure they would enjoy then yes but I'm not going to feel like it "has" to be a handmade gift.
    I think I will ask hubby to read us some nice Christmas stories and things and work on starting some traditions here, right now he is getting ready to read to us all.
    We went to the library and got some books and he is reading to us all in the evenings.

    Thanks for all of your replies and taking the time to answer.
     
  18. Lizza

    Lizza Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I have 13, 10, and 2 year old girls. Personally, I wouldn't do a homemade christmas, they are just kids. I think you are making the right decision to get them whatever is on their lists within your budget. Also, don't forget you can always add some educational toys and books too to round out whatever else you are getting. I know some parents wrap things like favorite special snacks too, just for extra stuff to unwrap.

    Also, making a big deal out of things like birthdays really doesn't take money, just energy. Maybe they are feeling like you don't really care about making their day special? Not saying you do, just trying to think what went wrong on the birthday from their perspective. It might not be the presents at all.
     
  19. PyroDon

    PyroDon Well-Known Member

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    We never had much when I was growing up .
    we new we had to have our Wish list in order cause we would only be getting what was on the top of the list , The one thing we really wanted . we never felt deprived and we enjoyed the homemade gifts that came along with our special present.
    Its hard on a kid to get nothing but homemade presents ,up to 4 or so they dont mind or notice but beyond that its a little hard.
     
  20. willow_girl

    willow_girl Very Dairy

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    When giving gifts, one should try to select something the recipient wants, if possible.

    Of course, the budget or other factors may come into play ... thus I say "if possible."

    But remember, the gift is not for YOU ... it's for the other person!

    Selecting a gift that fulfills your own emotional needs or desires, while ignoring those of the recipient, is a bit selfish ... no?