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With only 3 biweekly paydays left until Christmas this has everyone penny pinching and stretching checks as best as possible, I keep telling myself that it is the “thought” that counts and because of commercialization, media and our own instincts and habits of spoiling kids with more gifts or more elaborate gifts it makes it only that much harder when you have to penny pinch one year and the previous ones weren’t as much a struggle.
Kids young enough to still expect Santa’s gifts can be taught that because of the economy Santa and his elves have to stretch gifts and deliver more gifts to even more kids and as there are more needy people than ever each person can’t get as much and this is a good experience. I mean how many duplicate action figures that get played with for three months only to get chewed to pieces by my dog could they possibly need?
On the other hand, I am finding that there are some toys that get played with for years. Anything from PlayMobil and Treo seems to be played with longer than any other toy brand here in my household, my kids are natural builders and systems that allow for putting blocks together encourage imagination. Lego bricks (the small ones) are too complicated for my three year old so the Treo system with blocks and connecting sticks are perfect for his age, and allow for a greater variety with far fewer pieces.
I can’t tell you how many scattered tiny Lego pieces were found around the floors, and each shelf/drawer system we buy and try to arrange and organize ends up just being a toy junk drawer with no organized pattern to which toys are stored in it in a matter of weeks.
Time falls short, and over commercialization makes it hard to remember the reason is not about the presents but about celebrations of family and loved ones. Heck, why are they trying to sell Xmas stuff in October, let Thanksgiving pass before starting December holidays already. I know I am thankful for my family and will be making sure I spend time appreciating them in between the moments when I can actually take a breath.