Post # 1
Hello Bees! Future Hubby and I have decided to forgo Christmas in lieu of saving for our wedding. And we’re totally ok with that – we have everything we want pretty much and couldn’t even begin to get each other anything else simply because we don’t have any ideas. So the only people we will get gifts are of course our children, since let’s face it 6 and 4 year olds want presents!
I told my father on Sunday that I wasn’t doing Christmas and he didn’t take me seriously and proceeded to tell me that he was expecting a really good gift. Is anyone else forgoing Christmas this year? If so, how has your family reacted to the news? I’m seriously considering turning off all the phones on Christmas day and locking the doors. I don’t want anyone to spend any money on me since i’m 100% not spending any money on anyone else. How can I communicate this news effectively? The only thing I have considered is that I would exchange gifts if we drew names – that way everyone would only have to buy 1 gift instead of 1 for each person. What are your thoughts?
Post # 3
This is a really good idea. We did really small gifts ($10 limit) for my family last year. It ads up and none of us really need more “stuff”.
Post # 4
I think it’s hard to decide not to buy anyone presents so you can save money for yourself! It’s not going to go over well. Even a small token would be appreciated. Plus, Christmas isn’t just about gifts, you should still celebrate it!
FI and I are skimping on gifts to eachother this year, but not on gifts to everyone else. It’s not their fault we decided to have a wedding, ya know?
I hope this doesn’t come off as snarky or bit*hy, it’s just something to think about…
Post # 5
We probably won’t do it up big this year either. In fact I haven’t even thought about Christmas shopping yet. Yikes!
Post # 6
@OttawaBride2011: I second everything you just said! Your choice to have a wedding should not “hurt” the rest of your family in that you refuse to spend money on presents for them. You can choose not to get each other gifts but I really don’t think you can choose to not get the rest of your family gifts.
As another thought – my family draws names and has for years and it works really well! Everyone gets one $40-60 gift for whoever they drew and doesn’t buy for anyone else.
Post # 7
@souliganprincess: We are sort of. We have a gift cap with each other. We can’t 100% skip it. I have a 4 year old so that’s out of the question. but we are saving our tax returns.
Post # 8
Last year, we bought each other’s rings as Christmas presents. We picked them out together and didn’t have them in time to wrap for Christmas BUT it was the idea that we would need rings and didn’t need to be buying anything else so we spent our Christmas present money on wedding rings. As far as the rest of the family, we kept it low key and they understood. We did small gifts instead of nothing but we also don’t have kids to buy for. I think your family should understand if you tell them not to get you anything. If that is not acceptable for your family, you could make fudge or cookies or somthing else cheap and edible as a token.
Post # 9
We actually cut back last year because we felt like Christmas was becoming a bottomless pit of waste. We decided, that since we don’t really want “things”, we would only spend money on experiences (ie things to “do” together vs material objects). And we do the same for our families. It turned out great – it was so much cooler to open something that was a day planned out by my husband for me instead of crap I could take or leave. Since we both make good money and don’t want for anyhting, this was a great alternative – and really inexpensive!
Post # 10
@Mrs.KMM: Not buying people things isn’t “hurting” them. Most of what people get for Christmas isn’t necessary. My family would 100% understand if we didn’t give presents for valid reasons. If you are depending on Christmas presents as a way to supplement things that are necessary to live, that’s a whole other set of problems!
Post # 11
we’re not big gift givers, honestly. for the most part material things we get each other are practical. otherwise, we gift each other experiences. we try to do the same for family too. last year we needed to replace a tv so we bought a new flatscreen for ourselves/each other for christmas/hannukah. this year maybe wedding bands. we’re still going to get gifts for our parents though because after all, they’re helping out with this wedding a lot.
Post # 12
@crayfish: Thank you so much, I was starting to feel really really bad! I wasn’t trying to open a can of worms about anything – I was just looking for suggestions and wanted to know if everyone thought the family would understand. I guess now I know that some think that this isn’t acceptable at all and some think that it would be ok.
We would still go be with family and spend time with them as we normally would, but we just don’t want anyone to purchase anything for us since we will only be doing that for our 2 children.
Thanks everyone for all of your helpful comments – I will see if I can get folks on board with the name pulling idea. They may or may not be in favor of it. I don’t want to force anything on anyone, so whatever they want to do is fine.
I could bake a tin of cookies for everyone – maybe that would be ok as a gift? They are pretty yummy!
Post # 13
We are not buying gifts either, and we told everyone, they are okay with it. We are sending everyone a card explaining why we love them and are happy to be in the family. I have a large family so Christmas presents can work out to a few thousand especially as so many of them live in England so I have to factor in postage. I don’t think the issue is not buying presents, it is all in how you fram it or explain it and what efforts yo umake to celebrate in ways that don’t involve spending a ton of money.
Post # 14
I would never forgo Christmas. Maybe the gift giving portion but never the holiday as a whole… It is kinda celebrating the birth of a pretty important person in my book…
Post # 15
@kfricke89: Maybe the title should have been “Abandoning Christmas presents” – Sorry to be misleading – weekly churchgoer here. Yes, I will still celebrate the reason for the day.
Post # 16
I don’t have kids but I have young cousins who love to give gifts to other people, and feel so proud and happy when someone makes a fuss over the things they gave them. Are your kids the same way? Would you not buying gifts for people mean the kids wouldn’t get to give anyone presents?
I’d turn this into a family project- Make a present for each member of your family and say it’s from all of you. The cookie idea is good and the kids can help. Or make a bird feeder or picture frame etc, something that the kids will feel proud to give and the whole family can have a hand in helping make.