Costly Christmas with Kids? I Don’t Think So!

  “Mommy, I want that…no mommy, I want that…and that…no wait, I have to have this.” For the love of Christmas, this season can make you lose your mind…and a lot of money if you let it!  Chances are your kids have made their lists and now you’re checking them twice to see what you can afford. Right now, I’m lucky, my kids are two months and two years old. Although my two year old can now form sentences “I want (fill in the blank)”, she hasn’t picked up on actually wanting toys or seeing them in a commercial and realizing she will die without them. A lot of people tell me this is the last year I can “get away cheap” with her. My two-month old doesn’t even know what day it is, so I’m safe there.
  So with no real lists to lead me in the right toy aisle, what do I buy and how much do I spend? Hmmm…there’s the Barbie Jeep for $300 that my two year old can only ride for a few months out of the year and will probably grow out of in two summers, although her sister will be able to use it down the road.  There are Barbie dream houses for upwards of $100, but she’s too young for those yet. Her and Barbie are still strangers, so scratch these things off the list. Then there’s that new annoying rock star Elmo thing for about $60. If that thing enters my home, I may need to find it a new one…in the garbage.
   As far as my two-month old goes, there are a lot of educational toys out there I could buy that promise to have her reciting the encyclopedia by the time she’s one. If you’ve been following my blog, you know I’m never going to buy into that again! I’m not sure what other hot toys are out there, but there’s a good chance you won’t find them in my house the morning of December 25th.That’s not to say my children won’t be getting gifts, but I’m not going overboard. I know so many people who bombard their kids with so many gifts that it looks like the Toys R Us toy book threw up in their living room. A.) I think that’s ridiculous and B.) I think that’s setting them up to expect that flood of gifts all the time, which is really setting them up for disappointment, unless they have some rich uncle or something.
   So, why do we feel like we need to spend so much on our kids? Between diapers, clothes, and little odds and ends, I spend more money on them on a monthly basis than I do on myself even before they came along. So just because it’s Christmas, I have to empty my bank account? Why…to show them how much I love them? Did the three Kings max out their Visa cards or cash out their Christmas Club account (do banks even have those anymore?) before visiting baby Jesus? I think you get my point. I just get so frustrated when I hear how much some people spend on their kids for Christmas. I know it’s none of my business, but I just don’t get it, so if someone could explain it to me, that would be great!
  I can honestly say that I did not spend a lot on my kids this Christmas. And by “a lot” I mean I didn’t even spend $100 each. Call me a bad parent, call me cheap, call me whatever you want. But, will my children love me any less Christmas morning? I think you know the answer to that.