It has took me a long time to get into the Christmas spirit this year. It seems like just yesterday the kids were just returning to school and now in just over a week its going to be Christmas.
We have never been ones to buy for our kids all the time. Of course they have so much and have never been without anything, but it seems the older they get the more expensive the gifts get. In the past we have only spent $100 a piece on them for Christmas and $50 for birthdays. This has always seemed like a reasonable amount. Sometimes we might spend just a little more on one than the other but they always have the same amount of gifts to open.
This year we went way over. We ended up spending around $225 a piece. I have felt so bad because they aren't going to have many presents to open and I wish we could buy them more. Then after reading different blogs tonight on handmade gifts or only spending $20 for each kid. It really made me think. Why do I stress so much about trying to get them the newest gadget that all of their friends have. I want them to know the true meaning of Christmas.
They know about the birth of Jesus. But do they truly understand the sacrifice that God made for us. He sent this baby to Earth for us. He knew that this child was perfect and only through him could we go to heaven. This child was going to go through a terrible death for you and me.
Do my kids really get it? Do I really get it?
I was so disappointed in Emma when she made out her Christmas list for "Santa". She wanted a real pony (ha, ha), a nintendo ds with girl games, a computer, an ipod, new shoes, new snow boots and gold earrings. She is only six years old. Of course I know every little girl wants a pony and I would love her to have one. But come on a computer and ipod. What made me so upset about this letter was she wrote on the bottom I want all of these things for Christmas. When I told her she couldn't get all these things for Christmas she said well Santa will bring me everything that I want. I think its time to have the "Santa" talk.
I don't want them to think that Santa will bring everything to them. I don't want them to expect everything even when they get older. I want them to be grateful for what they do have and to remember those kids that don't have anything this year. I want them to remember the kids that have a parent fighting in the war or kids that don't have any family at all. Remember all the people that have lost their homes in this bad economy. The kids that don't know where their next meal will come from or the ones that dream of a warm bed to sleep in at night.
We need to stress the true meaning of Christmas to our children. I don't want spoiled brats that expect everything. I want them to be kind, caring and giving kids that grow up to be kind, caring, giving adults. I no longer feel bad for them only having a few presents to open, I now feel ashamed for spending too much money just to keep up with everyone else.
I think next year we should have a $50 limit for Christmas and let the kids buy gifts to donate for charity, or do something for others to give back. I want them to know the true meaning of Christmas!!!!
P.S. Don't get me wrong I have great kids that don't get new stuff a lot and don't ask a lot. I do love buying for them, but I just think we all need to take a step back and remember the real reason for the season!!!!