Day 6 // we don't buy presents for our kid

Yay, I'm catching up! So it's day six and what I'm writing about today might make some of you not like me anymore. It probably won't but there's still a possibility.

I love giving gifts. I also love receiving gifts. "Gifts" is one of my top love languages. I just really like to give. I tend to think I'm a pretty good gift-giver but those who have received my gifts at one time or another, may disagree.

However, there is one area in which my husband and I have chosen to 'live with less/spend less'. It's the area of buying gifts for our son, Cooper. Cooper is two years old. Cooper has celebrated two birthdays and two Christmases. Guess how many birthday and Christmas presents his mom and dad have purchased for him? None. Yep, none.

Go ahead and think that we are the worst parents in the world. It's ok. It won't hurt my feelings.

Here's what we think. Cooper is still too young to understand what a "gift" is. He's probably also still too young to know what a birthday or Christmas means. He gets plenty of birthday and Christmas presents from friends and family and Justin and I have no desire to add to the collection of stuff he doesn't "need". Please don't get me wrong, we LOVE when he gets presents from our friends and family because we know it's their way of showing Cooper that they love him. We do the same for our friends and family. We would never deny him a gift from someone else (unless it was going to harm him, of course) but we ourselves have chosen to let others be the bearers of gifts as long as Cooper doesn't know the difference. I should also day that we LOVE our son, we just choose to show that love through avenues other than physical gifts.

One day when he's older and smart enough to figure out that his parents didn't get him anything for his birthday, well, then maybe we'll change our policy. Maybe. This Christmas will be Cooper's third and we still haven't talked about whether or not we'll get him anything.

I'll let you know what we decide:)

How do you all feel about getting gifts or not getting gifts for your kids? Especially when they are too young to know what it means?


  1. I think you're brave to go against the tide of if-you-don't-buy-everything-for-your-kids-then-they'll-be-scarred-for-life. My husband & I don't have kids yet, but I've always wondered how people with kids handle the issue of trying to keep things simple while still making things fun & festive for their kiddos. It seems like you're striking a lovely balance there.

    (Hopped over from (in)courage!)

  2. Our kids get so much from others for their birthdays and Christmas that we really limit ourselves. For my daughter's first birthday I bought her a bunch of stuff that she would open, but then I returned most of it. Now the rule at Christmas is 4 gifts: something they want, something they need, a book, and a pair of pajamas.

  3. We have done that for both Noah and Juli when they were one and two for their birthdays. At Christmas we got them a book when they were 2. They got enough gifts from family and friends that I don't even think they realized they didn't get anything from us. Good for you guys :)

  4. Love your series and the topics you're covering. Definitely something I'm on board with and am excited to see more people talking about. We buy each kid one thing for birthday/Christmas. We also try to get rid of the excess before new things come in. The one issue we struggle with is convincing family and friends the kids don't need more stuff. I'd rather they get things they need.

  5. We are getting one meaningful gift for Sophia. Right now we're tight financially so for her 1st birthday it will be something small - but the idea is to build up her call it "dowry" or "life chest" whatever (we will have one for our boys too when we have them) - we're planning to put in there things we want her to have for future. Classic books, nice towels, things from Belarus, etc. For her party we're thinking of asking people to bring money and use it as a fundraiser to buy Christmas gifts for an orphanage in Mexico. We are not exchanging Christmas gifts within the three of us (even though Bryan did make stockings for us last Christmas. We also try to communicate with Bryan's family that I would much rather have them send gifts to Sophia "just because" whenever they are thinking about her rather than on one day which will create the feeling of entitlement as in "it's my birthday so I should get presents from everybody". Still figuring it out but grateful for the encouragement from your post that we're not in this alone :)