There are many wonderful things about Christmas, but there are also many stressful things about it. Many people complain about the expense of buying so many gifts for family and friends. It adds up fast, not to mention how bad the whole mess can be for the environment. Isn’t there a better way?
There can be. You’ll have to change how you think of Christmas presents and be ready for people to be surprised at the kinds of gifts you give.
For the people in your life who need just a little more company or someone to talk to, make their gift be your time. Promise to be there for them. Promise more visits where you’ll just sit and talk. Promise help running errands. Find things they need your help with, and offer your time.
This is great for grandparents and others who don’t need so many things in their homes, but often would like more company or help. It helps to create wonderful memories for all concerned and is a great example for the children in the family.
It’s also a good choice for your spouse. Give certificates promising a massage, a night out and so on.
The gift of experiences is great for kids. Give fewer things for presents and give more promises of things done together. The kids may be skeptical at first, but if you choose right, they’ll enjoy the experiences tremendously.
Hiking is a good choice for those who like to do things outdoors. You may have to drive to a good place for hiking, but you can have a lot of fun together on the hike.
Taking kids to free activities is another good choice. Stores such as Home Depot and Lowe’s often have free crafts for kids on Saturdays. Check the websites of your local stores and see what’s available.
Go to the Library
If your child loves books, more trips to the library is a great choice that won’t cost you anything. It’s great fun exploring all the library has to offer.
Many libraries have special activities you can attend. There may be story hour for preschoolers, for example. My local library also has a Toddler Boot Camp, which is a mom and toddler exercise time. Check your library’s website to discover the activities available to you.
The main thing to remember is that you can give more than just things for the holidays. Your time is far more valuable to those you care about than the things you can give them. They may not realize it right away, but most truly enjoy it when you give more of your time and focus less on things.