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$600 in gifts for a 3 yr old - Page 3

post #41 of 89
Makes me wonder what that child will expect when she's a teenager if they spent that much already.

$600 exceeds our entire holiday budget for gifts for everyone. That's an obscene amount to spend on one young child. Trade skills with someone if you really have floor space for that expensive hand-crafted play kitchen.
post #42 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by llamalluv View Post
It's unreasonable to buy that many toys, even if you are super wealthy, IMO. A few years before my parents split up, when I was about 5, my mom got angry at my father and ran out and maxed all the department store cards at Christmas. She spent over $1,000 on my 3yo sister and I. We opened presents on Christmas morning for about 45 minutes, and then wanted to go take a nap. We were less than halfway through the pile.

I guess I'm unreasonable then. It's nice that you added your own experience, but it has nothing to do with anyone else's experience. Sure I could spend $600 on a heap of Barbies, baby dolls, Polly Pockets, Care Bears, whatever. Maybe that' unreasonable, yes (although I definitely don't have the authority to call it that). BUT, I could also spend $600 on a complete, wooden, hand-made play kitchen. How is that crazy , if you have the money? I spent a good deal on my DD's b-day but don't consider it unreasonable because it was spent on a complete bedroom (furniture, textiles, decor, etc.) It's wrong to broadly judge and generalize, especially under different circumstances.

Anyway, I digress, I agree with what Ruthla said a ways back. The point is that, for them, it was excessive and a wee bit crazy. What is also sad is the fact that they're more worried about a disappointing Christmas for their daughter than they are being in debt and unable to pay bills. Misplaced priorities and focus.
post #43 of 89
I don't think it's fair to judge what's right or excessive for another family- outside of the fact that they are struggling financially and $600 for gifts wasn't the most responsible use of their money. Some people think that only handmade wooden toys are worth the money, others would feel that whatever lights up their child's eyes on Christmas morning makes it worth it. I don't think there is a universal way to calculate how worthy some items are compared to others.

We have always spent around $500 per kid for Christmas. It was in the budget, we weren't in danger of getting behind on bills, etc. This year it's about $300-ish and while some may consider that excessive, it's what's right for my family. We can afford it, it's what we want to do for our children, and that's that.
post #44 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by dolcedaze View Post

DD (2.5) is getting a wooden dollhouse with 4 rooms of furniture and a doll family, and a set of puppets with a theater from us. The dollhouse with furniture is about $200, the puppets were on sale for $30, and the theater will probably be another $45. My mom is spending another $200ish on a little table and chair set, and got her a waldorf baby doll with a gown and sling
post #45 of 89
Also, even if you don't 'technically' use $$, you use $ to figure out the conversion rate between trades. So, say the dollhouse costs $300. You can do website stuff, and charge $30/hr. You owe the craftsman 10 hours of website design.

Either way, if you can afford to spend $600 per child, why not? I couldn't/wouldn't, but I'm sure I splurge somewhere that others wouldn't. I mean, c'mon, it's once a year. Some people put a lot of emphasis on presents, whereas others focus on other things. No difference, and no need to judge.

Now, if it's causing problems paying bills, then there are other, bigger issues than that of presents. I think that needs to be taken into consideration before condemning people who 'spend so much'.

Ami
post #46 of 89
Um, no matter how much money I had, I wouldn't spend that much on any child. That's not what Christmas is about for us. We spend less than a hundred, *total* on gifts, food, and travel, and even that seems excessive to us.

What I spent on my kids..... .49cx3 I found brand new woodworkign sets for them at the thrift store, we were given a real toolbox (yardsale find), so those will go together.

I think the most my parents ever spent on us kids was one year when we were all teenagers, and we each got a new Sony cd/casette player. I still have mine 10 years later.
post #47 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by Minerva View Post
Makes me wonder what that child will expect when she's a teenager if they spent that much already.

$600 exceeds our entire holiday budget for gifts for everyone. That's an obscene amount to spend on one young child. Trade skills with someone if you really have floor space for that expensive hand-crafted play kitchen.
Exactly. It reminds me of the opening scene in one Harry Potter book where Dudley is OUTRAGED that he received one fewer present than the year before. And Petunia says something like, "But Dudders....these presents are ever so much larger and more expensive than last years." And she can't shut him up until she agrees to buy him TWO MORE presents, so that he has more presents than the year before.

One year when money was really tight, my mom worked out a trade with a client to get me a sewing machine for free. I used that machine for years, making clothes for my younger sisters, and toys (stuffed animals and such), and even their Halloween costumes.
post #48 of 89
I can see spending that on one child that is older. My son is 14 and he wants higher priced items. He knows if he gets that high priced item there won't be much more.....he knows one good items is better than a bunch of crap he doesn't want.
post #49 of 89
Why is it so irresponsible to spend $600 (assuming you have it, can pay cash, etc.)

A good quality outdoors wooden swing set costs at LEAST that much--who's to say they didn't buy her that, instead of buying her other gifts, and then in the summer plopping down $600 for the swingset. It's awfully odd to judge someone, not even knowing what it was that was even purchased! :

I do hope the family takes this year to make the holidays frugal but nice instead of dwelling on the dollar amount though.
post #50 of 89
So, I'm just wondering... to everyone who thinks it's wrong to spend that much on your kid for Christmas when you have the money, don't have debt and are in good financial shape, why is it so wrong?

Not all of us are handy with tools and such. Not all of us can easily find someone willing to trade services with us.

Do you object to the fact that parent's are spending so much money on their kids at all, or is it that it's for presents?

I buy ds many nice, big, fun toys twice a year: Christmas and May for his birthday. I shop with the next 6-12 months in mind at least, and think about what he'll enjoy. I think about how much use these toys will get him. I think about how long they'll last and if ds #2 will be able to still play with them when he's a toddler also. So yeah, I spend several hundred. But I get large items that I'd want him to have anyway. He's not getting 45 different gifts under the tree. He's getting a couple bigger items, one small item to open on Christmas eve (family tradition) and some small stocking stuffers.

So really, is the objection to buying new? Is it to kids having more toys than your kids do? Is it to spending so much money on the child? Really, what is the objection?
post #51 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruthla View Post
Even if they're not in credit card debt, they don't have anything in savings- the article states theyr'e 3 or 4 weeks behind on bills. It could be that some of those bills are from poor spending habits in the past, or it could be that those are al legitimate bills like phone, car insurance, heat, etc. Even so, if they'd spent $50 on gifts last year and put the other $550 in savings, they wouldn't be in such a tight spot right now.
$550 barely covers our utulities so I don't think it would help much.
All the same,I can't imagine spending that much on gifts.
post #52 of 89
Some people think it's ridiculous to spend a certain amount of money on a doll...even if that doll is an organic material hand crafted, Waldorf-type toy. I don't think some one is necessarily more justified in spending a certain amount because they buy toys they deem "better". I would rather spend $50 dollars on my 2 year old and buy a few more decent quality toys (NOT junk, but not high end waldorf-style) then just one doll. BUT if I had larger amount of money to spend I WOULD buy some really nice wooden natural toys. I guess it just depends on my budget. For me it's sort of a balance of quality and quantity. But that also depends on the age of the kid. My 13y/o DSD knows that she's probably not going to get alot of stuff, but her stuff is more expensive. A two year old doesn't really care...but I would imagine 5 y/o me would have rather gotten 3 or 4 nice toys than one really expensive super nice organic cotton doll. (and no we were not spoiled children)

But that's only my opinion. I really can't get worked up over what other people spend on their kids. I can easily see how one could spend $600 dollars on a kid, but it's something we just can't do. I'm already spending about $150 dollars on a wooden kitchen (by KidKraft) and that's about all she's going to get from us. My husband "Eeeped" at that...but we both agreed it is an investment and something she will be able to enjoy for years to come. So that works for us. We have a limited budget and a big chunk is going toward the 2 year old and the 13 y/o (the biggest chunk). To me the kids are the most important. With the adults it just get to the point that we are giving gifts just for the sake of giving them.

I don't really NEED another large smelly candle and there are only so many gadgets my parents and in-laws want. And honestly things that I truely want...I can just go out and get myself. Now that I'm older I can definitely see the niceness of homemade gifts. You could have never told me that when I was a child.
post #53 of 89
I know as a kid that it was opening presents that was fun and what they were wasn't horribly important, so my parents would do stuff like wrap up a set of blocks in groups of 2-4 blocks so we'd get to open like 20 packages. They'd also set toys we'd lost interest in aside and give them back to us (wrapped! and we'd find them fun again.

I grew up like that, have already started making Lina toys, and I could still see spending $600 on gifts.
post #54 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by grniys View Post
So, I'm just wondering... to everyone who thinks it's wrong to spend that much on your kid for Christmas when you have the money, don't have debt and are in good financial shape, why is it so wrong?
Because it violates my values. You may have different values than I, so from your perspective, it would not be wrong. But as long as I am looking at a situation from my own perspective, I will make a determination based on the information available to me and colored by my values.
post #55 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by mama2mygirl View Post
$550 barely covers our utilities so I don't think it would help much.
All the same,I can't imagine spending that much on gifts.
That is an interesting perspective, but I think you miss the point.

Imagine you were able to cut out 92% of ALL of your non-essential expenses. That could amount to a few thousand per year, and keep you from facing foreclosure, or having the gas shut off in February, etc.
post #56 of 89
Honestly, I would *love* to drop $600-- or far more-- at the feet of a good WAHM or other company doing good.

I could **easily***rack that up. Easily. Without issue. Hands down. (Silk & wiil longjohns for life, for one. Fantabulous awesome books to create a most fantasitic home library for another, and fab nacherul toys to frost the cake).

Now, where to get the money?

However, if I easily had it, I know where and how I would spend it , and it would take me all about 5 Uber Crunchy Minutes.
post #57 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by slsurface View Post
Ugh! I hate stories like that. I never spent more than $500 for all Christmas gifts for everyone in my and DH's families combined! Now that I make all our gifts, I spend around $100 total for all gifts.

As an aside, I've done some research near French Lick Indiana. There isn't much work in that area, it's pretty remote.
Me too! I made all the gifts this year and DH and I are getting new Cell phones as our gifts for each other. Our phones are up for new every 2 years in a week so since we had to buy them anyways we just decided to use that as our gift.
I spent about $150 on gifts for DHs Family (9 people) and for cookies and stuff for our neighbors (2 families). My Family isnt buying gifts for each other this year.

Also had to comment- I live 30 minutes from French Lick Its beautiful here!
post #58 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by JTA Mom View Post
Some people put a lot of emphasis on presents, whereas others focus on other things. No difference, and no need to judge.
I disagree. I don't think it's healthy to encourage rampant consumerism in children.
post #59 of 89
I've deleted some posts from this thread, for violating the UA... clearly ideas differ about how much one should spend on gifts, but please keep it respectful - thanks!

Dar
post #60 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by wannabe View Post
I disagree. I don't think it's healthy to encourage rampant consumerism in children.
Ok, maybe I didn't explain myself well enough. When I meant emphasis on presents, I mean in the financial sense. One can buy a lot of cheap, crappy toys for $600 or a few, good quality, local WAHM wares. One speaks of rampant consumerism, whereas the other doesn't. Yet both spent the same amount. All I was saying is that if people can afford $600 per child, who am I (or anyone) to judge them? I'm sure there are areas in which I indulge that others wouldn't. That doesn't make it right for them to judge me or anyone else for it, especially if I (or they) can afford it.

I just don't see why there is so much condemnation coming from those who wouldn't spend that much on those who do. Why does it matter if they can afford it?

Ami
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