On today’s travel we walk carefully, opening and closing our wallet through the treacherous holiday season.
An open letter from the Roamer about the Holidays.
Just recently I was thinking about how Thanksgiving is getting closer and that of course means that Black Friday is around the corner.
As the holidays get closer you are probably starting to think about all the gifts you need to purchase. You are excited! Shopping is so much fun and gift giving is even better. Right?
And all those bills you’ll have to pay off next January, those are just a minor inconvenience. Right?
What about getting gifts?
Just thinking of all the gifts you’ll get, makes you so happy! You never get stuff you don’t like.
Well except for those silly salt and pepper shakers. Oh and there is that atrocious sweater, it was even 2 sizes too small. And why would anyone think it’s a good idea to give someone cleaning products? Useful gifts? Come on people, be more creative!
Does this sound like you?
Well I don’t want that to sound like us, To be my family.
Mr. Roamer and I don’t own many things (we couldn’t even fully furnish an apt. ) but we still feel like we are drowning in stuff. We have actually walked around our small apartment and said ” Man, I wish we had less stuff.” We have actually said this and honestly feel this way.
So for me the idea of gifts on special days is a double edged sword. First it puts the importance on the wrong thing. (Material goods) and then it also results with items I don’t need. Items most of us don’t need.
The holidays or any other special days are about more then just presents.
Holidays to me are about spending time together as a family. A day mom and dad don’t have to go to work and instead can spend time with the kids. I wish for that amazing moment to not be over shadowed by gifts. But you know what, sometimes…… Most times…. It is.
Everyone is mostly focusing on the gifts. The stores. The Deals.
I use to too, but not anymore. I am aiming for a simple life, a life rooted more on values of community, time, togetherness . Not things. They are values I want my kids to learn.
As such I am requesting a gift giving cease fire.
Now I fully understand that idea is to extreme for some. It just wont fly.
So you still need to give a gift? May I direct your efforts.
Earlier I wrote how silly useful gifts are. I was actually being sarcastic. The best gifts to me are the useful ones. So read along for wholesome valuable gift ideas.
- Cook us one of your specialty dishes, this will likely involve us coming over, value of community? Check
- Write us a letter revealing the secrets of a long happy marriage.
- Schedule a play date with us for the kids, my son loves seeing his friends. Value of togetherness? Check
- Call us and let’s have a long talk.
- Gift us time to Clean out a closet. Time? Check
okay you say.
That’s you. What about the kids?
I’m a millennial so sorry if I use a reference outside of your time.
Have you read Harry Potter? The feeling of entitlement is a real issue with most kids these days. As for me, I don’t want to have a Dudley Harry potter moment.
Where Dudley on his birthday ask ” How many are there?”( speaking of his presents)
His father says ” There are 37, counted them myself this morning”
“37, 37? but last year I had 38 gifts”
” Well this years gifts are bigger”
” I don’t care”
No. That is not what we want as parents.
So let’s not give a free pass when it comes to the kids. Here too we should ask the question. Does this gift have value. Other then the thrill of “hey! Look at this new thing that is mine!” Just to be caste off for the next brightly wrapped box.
The best gifts are those that encourage creativity. Not those toys that dictate use, like push this button for a song. Not those toys who if the battery dies are discarded.
A great toy that encourages creativity? building blocks ( to not be brand specific).
If you must give gifts to kids I hope they are meaningful and remember quality not quantity. So please limit your gift giving to the kids as well.
Yes Gifts? Well lets consider where you stand financially
So you maybe really enjoy the gift thing. Or maybe you’ve felt pressure by society to participate even as you struggle financially. Let this be your absolution.
For if you are in a bind your family likely knows. Those people exist in my family and when I see people strapped for cash hand out so many gifts the thought runs through my head, why did you buy this if you are having financial issues. A better present for you and me would be to not have to worry about you financially.
If the thought of January’s bill cause you a twinge of discomfort maybe it a warning sign. So just say no to the obligation, you don’t need to sacrifice your financial security.
If you need to get a better idea of where I am coming from check out all these amazing articles.
- Buy nothing day after thanksgiving
- Five steps to a more meaningful holiday season
- Why I took all my kids toys away
I am starting to trend towards minimalism so help us live the simple stuff life and the full of love and experiences life. Do you want to live this life too? Share this letter with your family and start your own new tradition.
Comment now and tell me what is your favorite holiday memory. Did it include a gift? What are you looking forward to this Holiday season?
I’ll start… my favorite thanksgiving was when my family actually sat together to eat it. (maybe that sound normal to you but it wasn’t for my family) And during we played some word and memory games, there was actual laughing involved. It might of happened again the year after that but I only have 2 memories of a thanksgiving like that. It really is a cherished memory, and I can tell you, I sure as heck don’t remember any of the gifts I got that Christmas.
So again. leave me a comment below and share with me your favorite memory.