Don't allow commercial television in your home. My DH's most proud parental achievement is that he has set up TV viewing for our children so that neither has ever seen a commercial in their home.
Avoid big-box stores with your kids (or perhaps in general). Part of me thinks that letting my kids into a store like Toys-r-Us would have ruined them. ;-) It's such a crazy store. I, myself, have only been one a handful of times and my first thought was, "Oh, my gosh, I can NEVER bring my kids here".
Merry Christmas everyone!!! I love this thread. I knew I wasn't crazy. We did one gift from Santa and one gift from us for our two kids. But I feel down because everyone else spoils the kids. I would love to in away but I also want them to learn to appreciate things and can you do that being showered with gifts?
We focus more on the snow activities and decorations and gathering with family. I have also been trying to read baby Jesus stories.
We discouraged asking for presents and writing letter to Santa to ask. Instead if the wanted to they wrote just general happy letters rhat also expressed a general thank you for his generosity. If they found themselves on Santa's lap they were able to ask for one " thing". We focusd on making food for his reindeer and treats for him.
It seemed to work because now as young adults I'm always proud of their lack of commercialism in their lives.