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Christmas…this year I’m trying something new

Last year, despite my best efforts to avoid this scenario, my 2 year old son wound up with so many presents from “Santa” and family that he lost interest about five presents in. Not that I’m not grateful for everything. Our family is so sweet and thoughtful to make sure my little guy is taken care of even with us being halfway across the country. But my living room still looks like a scene from Romper Room. And this year we welcomed our second son, so does that mean even more stuff? What to do?

Well, this year I’m going to try something new. Instead of just letting everyone wing it and try to figure out what’s cool for a  3 year old and an almost 1 year old, I’ve decided to give everyone a list of ideas. Will this offend anyone? I hope not. I’m hoping it will take some stress out of Christmas shopping for everyone.

This year my son is old enough to make a list for Santa. So I’ll include that of course. But in addition I want to give everyone some very affordable options that will be very well-received by my boys…and a couple that will be appreciated more by mom and dad.


Movie tickets - I’ll let everyone know that going to the movies is a very special treat and so movie tickets are a great option. And you can get discounted tickets for a national theater chain at Costco for around $15/pair.

Gift cards for Disneyland - We’re planning a big trip to Disneyland next year, so a gift card with even $10 on it to use to buy a souvenir will be a lot of fun. Especially since we really limit “buying stuff” at amusement parks it would be a big treat.

Zoo tickets - What kid this age doesn’t love animals. A trip to the zoo is fun and educational.


529 College Savings Plan - Both of my both boys have 529 plans. Even a yearly contribution of only $25 could grow to $1000 by the time they’re off to college.

American Silver Eagle Coins - In today’s market you can purchase these 99.93% silver coins for about $28 from the US Mint. It will be fun to watch this coin increase (hopefully!) in value over time. And it will provide a great opportunity to teach my little ones the value of investing.

And what about my husband and I? Should I include us on the list? Well, Christmas really has become all about the kids for us, but I will include a couple ideas for our families since they never leave us out. While my husband would love power tools or Bourbon, I lean toward experiences such as sushi making or wine tasting. And they’re a lot more fun and affordable than power tools!

So this is my plan. Again, I hope it’s not too forward and will make Christmas shopping a little easier for everyone.

What about you? For those of you with kids do you make a list or let everyone know what to get? I’d love to hear what you do.

One Comment

  1. Yours certainly sounds like an awesome plan. Sometimes we’ve gotten presents for kids only to find out someone else had the same present. It helps if people can get different things.
    I think also concentrating on the long term and focusing on things that appreciate in value or things that will be of great use to the kids in future is one of those master moves a parent can take. Will be borrowing some of your ideas this Christmas it seems :)

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