Spinoff: Christmas - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 4 Old 09-02-2006, 05:46 AM - Thread Starter
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I have five sibs. My kids have eight (almost nine) cousins from my five sibs. The six of us (siblings) all get gifts for everyone else's kids for Christmas and birthdays, and I'm sick of it (especially since most of the kids have birthdays right around Christmas.....I'm buying them all two gifts at the same time.) Would you believe that, for the last two years, I've suggested having the cousins draw names for each other, and my siblings won't go for it! I've even explained that I don't have any more space in my small (compared to theirs) house.

I'm so tired of the huge MOUNTAIN of gifts coming in at Christmas!

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#2 of 4 Old 09-02-2006, 11:20 AM
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Well, I don't have a family that size, so take this with a grain of salt, but there's no need for them to all consent for your family to change your gift giving ways. Hey, just lead by example!

At birthdays I would probably stick to giving a single gift to the birthday child. At Christmas, you can decide that your own family is going to switch over to giving family gifts (i.e. a membership to a local museum, donation in the family name, homemade cookies, fudge or some other treat for everyone to share).

It seems as though the kids aren't going to miss the individual gifts if there are already mountains there, and maybe, just maybe, your sibs will see how much they enjoy your gift and pick up the new tradition.
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#3 of 4 Old 09-02-2006, 01:10 PM
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A&A~ Ugh, I hear you. My three sisters have all resisted the name exchange and insist on unloading many gifts to the kids and expect the same. I have resisted in the past years by giving a few smaller gifts to each kid (I have 9 niece's and nephews just on my side). Some of these kids are adults. Dh and I actually had a conversation about skipping Christmas with my family this year, much for this reason.

Do the niece's and nephews have birthday parties or are you expected to give b day gifts at Christmas?

~Joan, Happy mom to 2 beautiful kiddos, one new puppy and 2 lovely felines
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#4 of 4 Old 09-02-2006, 03:55 PM
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I'm from a big family, too. I told everyone that we didn't want to participate in gift exchanges anymore and I am so glad. We exchange gifts with the people we actually see at xmas, but have stopped mailing things to the out of state families. I was spending close to $100 on shipping!

It is possible that if you stop giving their kids gifts, they will stop reciprocating, but you don't want anyone to get insulted. Maybe you can start giving the kids smaller "token" gifts as a way to scale down. Or have your kids make presents for their cousins. It might not solve the problem, but it might be a first step in the right direction.

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