Ever Considered a No-Gift Christmas?
As the shopping malls begin to deck the halls with boughs of proverbial holly, some parents are making the decision to call it quits on Christmas gifts.
Before you shout out “Scrooge!”, think about how Christmas mornings in many middle-class houses go down: a sea of gifts wrapped in single-use wrapping, shiny bows that go in the bin, unnecessary treats quickly devoured by bulging waistlines… It’s chaotic, frantic, and often downright gluttonous and wasteful.
Toys and gifts are opened, played with, and often lost, broken or soon forgotten in the depths of the toy box, and your family is left with mountains of “things” in a post-Christmas apocalypse.
Every year, you may find yourself saying: “Next, year, I’m scaling back.” But do you ever actually follow through? Time and time again, you may find yourself giving away unused toys, clothes and gifts that simply aren’t needed and aren’t used.
Of course, there may be some items that your children want and need, and Christmas is a wonderful time to bring them the joy of receiving.some special. So, if there’s a gift that you know your child will love and cherish, go for it! But if you’re buying something for the sake of buying something, maybe it’s time to think again.
In this blog post, we’re offering some ideas for a less consumeristic Christmas. Why not get your friends and family involved too, encouraging them to give presents beyond the plastic?
Spend time, not money
The best thing you can give your children is your time. Time is the most precious gift that can’t be replaced, even by the most expensive gifts.
Over the holiday period, make time for your children and spend time together as a family. You don’t have to go away on holiday; quality time can be as simple as preparing and eating a meal together, going for a walk, getting an ice-cream, lying on the grass and watching the clouds.
The same goes for friends and family members – why not offer experiences and time together instead of a gift that may be quickly forgotten?
If you have enough of your own “things”, why not give back to those who are less fortunate? This teaches your children valuable lessons about the true spirit of the season.
- Do a Christmas-clean out of things that you no longer use and donate them to someone who will use and appreciate them.
- Create Christmas gift hampers for the homeless, children at an orphanage or people at an old age home.
- Volunteer your time at a cause that is close to your heart.
Put money towards your children’s education
Instead of spending money on physical gifts, provide your children with the gift of a good education – a gift that doesn’t break or get lost and one that nobody can ever take away from them.
Adding to your School-Days bursary at Christmas, birthdays and other occasions is a great way to “lock away” contributions towards your children’s future education. We call this a ‘Boost Up’. You can choose to make ad-hoc contributions or set up a monthly debit order.
How to ‘Boost Up’:
- Log in to your School-Days dashboard
- Click on ‘Boost Up with direct contributions to your bursary’
- Follow the prompts
Not a School-Days member yet?
Click here to join today and start building a bursary for your family’s school, college and university fees.