{less excess}

Monday, December 30, 2013

This Christmas we did many things differently. The biggest thing we changed was the number of gifts the children would find under the tree. I look at past Christmas pictures and I cringe. I hate that we put such an emphasis on the height of presents under the tree. I wanted the wow factor for the children, but after the paper was ripped & the toys in stacks I often found myself thinking why? Why so much? why all at once? The toys are played with and sets put together, & then they find their way into the game closet, sometimes forgotten or in a toy drawer amongst the many other activities.  I love hearing how other families decide how to celebrate this most holy holiday. One day while Presley was tapping her heels in tap class, my friend Susie and I started discussing how our ideas of presents have evolved since those early years with babies. How excess is less and less appealing to us. Susie said this year they would be giving each of their children 2 gifts. I lit up! I was not alone! We had wanted to set a low low LOW number for our Christmas this year & this just shoved us more in that direction. We really felt inspired this Christmas to pull back and think of 3 things per child that they would really and truly enjoy & grow with. Their lists were short & easy to fulfill. By cutting back we were able to get bigger ticket items that would pack a punch. funny part is...Britt's favorite gift was a $7.00 plush he had wanted for months & Maddox was thrilled to bits over play doh.  Because we decided to simplify this holiday season and focus less on presents we were in a position to help a family that needed warmth and shelter...not toys, not candy...but hot meals, a warm bed. It really put things in perspective. & do you think the little S's even noticed they didn't have more than 3 things? nope! Not a complaint! In a year when we ask them what they received under the tree...odds are they won't even remember...but what they will remember is the feelings of love, and togetherness.  We are so so blessed. 

first few pictures from Christmas morning... 
we were so lucky to have Omah & Opha to share the day with us too!  


Kalen said...

I LOVE that idea & love Cooper's car. :) Norah definitely had more than any of us needed under the tree this year! We will definitely be cutting back next year, too! We're all a little overwhelmed now that everything is out of it's box.

Amie Orton said...

Great thoughts.I am so glad you wrote this to influence me even more. I think that every year and then about a day before Christmas I think.. oh I think I over simplified and buy a few more things. then as we are setting out Christmas eve... oh man alive it feels like too much. Such a balance game. Next year I feel geared up to simplify even more. You are awesome!

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