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how many presents is enough for kids?

Discussion in 'Parents' Forum' started by richard plumb, Nov 24, 2010.

  1. Desmo

    Desmo Well-Known Member

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    On another forum I read some guy was saying that his kids had the hump with him as money was tight at the moment and he'd reduced his Christmas spend on them from £250 to £200 and they had to knock some things off the list.

    I mean seriously? No wonder some kids grow up as want, want, want.

    Why would you actually tell them an amount in the first place anyway? And if my future children ever get the hump in that way I'd probably knock it in half again. I know it's easy to say as a non-parent, but things like this do my head in, I think I'll have some quite strict views :/
  2. Solomon Grundy

    Solomon Grundy Active Member

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    Half a dozen in the stocking and a couple of big ones in the living room i think. He has written to Father Christmas asking for a Chocolate Coin Maker as his most wanted present. Nice and cheap Christmas this year!
  3. more

    more Member

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    There shouldn't be upper limit to the amount of present given to kids
  4. more

    more Member

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    Hmm
  5. freemind

    freemind Member

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    Its been a tough balancing act for me with 2 (girl 13, boy 10) as a single parent the last 8 years. Money has always been the main issue.

    Ive previously given them 1 main and 5 or 6 very minor. Theyve burnt through 4 nintendo DS's and 4 mobiles between in recent years. :mad:

    last year things were tough as I'd lost my job and we had just moved house but they were very understanding. I bought my daughter a load of books (even trawled through charity shops) which she was really pleased with (she still reads them even though she has been given more since) and some small and delicate japanese ornaments. My son got a keyboard and yet more books.

    This year will be different. I got another job pretty quick and been saving furiously :devil: They got an 360 + kinect for their birthdays which are close together. This xmas they'll be able to play the games and 3D blu-ray movies on a 51" plasma :D

    The 1 abiding xmas memory was the 1st they spent with me. They were 5 & 2. They had more fun with the paper airplanes i made than from any of the gifts they got....

    Paul
  6. imightbewrong

    imightbewrong Active Member

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    Ah - the old 'pretend the present is for them' trick ;)

    Sounds amazing :)
  7. freemind

    freemind Member

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    shhhhhh !!! ;)
  8. kav

    kav Well-Known Member

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    I suppose to an extent it depends how often you buy them presents over the course of the year. If Christmas and birthdays are the only time they get anything significant, then why not go all out? On the other hand, if you feel like you have to go absolutely crazy on presents at Christmas just to top all the things you've bought them through the year, that's probably not so good, for you or them.
  9. richard plumb

    richard plumb Active Member

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    all sorted now. Bought a bunch of smaller presents for my son.

    Also had the traditional pre-christmas argument with the wife about how I buy too many presents for them. Only bought around 4-5 little presents this time - just like big stocking fillers really.
  10. Jenn

    Jenn Active Member

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    That's true. We don't buy toys for him other than birthday and Christmas. At best he'll get a < £5 action figure / thomas train once in a while but rarely and usually as a reward for something.
    So he gets a little spoilt on those two occasions.
  11. 7ewis

    7ewis Member

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    I'm 16, and on my birthday and Christmas I 'like' to get a 'main' present but don't really know what I want to get this year, for my birthday in September I just got loads of Hollister clothes and money, and I don't know what I want for Christmas either. I have everything I need.. Well want :p, phone, iPod, ps3, laptop.. And to get then my parents like to make me contribute towards it or have it as a joint birthday and Christmas present.

    I'm not too bothered about the value that they spend on me, I know that they find Christmas quite stressful as our family (my mums side) take it in turns to have Christmas at each others houses and this years it's out turn to host it, there will be 8 adults and 6 kids in my house the kids ages ranging from 16(me) to 9. And my parents have recently spent a lot of money on the lounge (new 50" TV connecting to a Harmon-Kardon AVR350(?) in the room next door, expensive sofas, wallpaper, carpet, fireplace, flattened the ceiling etc.) they don't really like me going in there, let alone all these others :p also last year one of my cousins stood on a coffee table and broke it..

    Anyway I can guess that my parents spend around £200 on me at Christmas. I would much rather get one main present than loads of small presents that aren't going to be of use to me. But I guess as I kid I would be happy with loads of cheap different presents, or a bike or something, but I did love getting a DS for my birthday :p.

    All I want for Christmas is you! Jokes, Modern Warfare 3 :p got BF3 instead :/
  12. quarry2006

    quarry2006 Active Member

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    When I was a kid I got everything I asked for in terms of presents. It was the wholly awful trauma of the day that I didn't ask for. Every year, Christmas became a black and miserable day for me and my sister. I know now that it's not the presents that kids remember, it's the time spent with them and the effort to make it a special day that linger in the memory, regardless of how much money is spent.

    So, from the buying of the tree to putting up the decorations, from listening to Louis, Frank and Dean in the car to visiting Santa's grotto, from seeing the kids appear in the nativity (this year, only the boy is in the play; my daughter is in the choir so we'll be going to see her sing in church) to reading them 'Twas The Night Before Christmas on Christmas Eve - traditions all - I do my very best to make sure every Christmas is memorable and lovely (and this year the PTA asked if I would perform at the Christmas Fayre - I'm a singer - so there's another memory to add to the list).

    And if I want to spend a small fortune on my kids at Christmas, so be it - but it's not the be all and end all.
  13. IronGiant

    IronGiant Moderator

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    My son said he doesn't want too much for Christmas as he got more than he expected for his Birthday.
    If this was a double bluff son, please let me know ASAP : )
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2011
  14. quarry2006

    quarry2006 Active Member

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    Yup, the clock's ticking...and you really don't want to be plunging into the crowds of shoppers over the next few weekends!
  15. Jenn

    Jenn Active Member

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    For as far as I can remember, my mum's always done the majority of Xmas shopping on the 23rd, in complete panic, amongst thousands of other people in complete panic and exhaustion. :eek:
  16. Dony

    Dony Active Member

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    My wife met up with a friend today and has come home thinking we've bought too much for our kids.
    Her friend has got a Wii game and a book for her son. It's not as if they are short of money as she owns a hairdressers and her husband is a company director.

    We've got our's 5 or 6 presents each.
  17. Adams0211

    Adams0211 Member

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    Reading through this thread, I think I've bought WAY too much for my kids.
  18. Jenn

    Jenn Active Member

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    Erm... That sounds a bit tight (the friend). When my parents had a very rough time they'd have got that but while we never got more than 2-3 presents from them, in good times it would be much better stuff than just a game and a book.

    My son is getting quite a few things this year but some of it is cheap from ebay because it's not available in the shops any more. And most of the rest was through the Tesco voucher exchange thing so it's like getting everything half price.
  19. quarry2006

    quarry2006 Active Member

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    The thing about presents is that kids don't know, and nor do they give a tinker's cuss, about how much the presents cost.

    We visited Santa today at Lewis's fine old grotto in Liverpool (now relocated to Rapid Hardware) and my son got a bag of plastic dinosaurs. He was made up with them and we've been playing with them all night.

    Maybe it's how you bring your kids up. I alluded to my sister's daughter earlier, who is shamefully neglected in many ways - the kid doesn't even get a bedtime story read to her - and money and the amount of presents she gets is a really big deal to her. I'm sure that she'd have made a holy show if she'd been given something similar to what my son came away with today.

    Incidentally, when we first took my kids to see Santa (and it's the same Santa every year at the Lewis's grotto) he remarked on how they truly represented and understood the real spirit of Christmas. Which makes me think that it must be the real Santa because surely only the real Father Christmas would be so perceptive!
  20. quarry2006

    quarry2006 Active Member

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    One tends to find that the more money some people have, the stingier they become.
  21. Dony

    Dony Active Member

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    I'm not sure about that in this case....their children aren't wanting for anything. The parents are from Malta so maybe Christmas isn't a big deal for them.
  22. paullush

    paullush New Member

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    mine get the gift of food and a roof over their heads for another year :)
  23. Adams0211

    Adams0211 Member

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    Out of curiosity, how much do you think you've spent on your kids presents?
  24. Jenn

    Jenn Active Member

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    In money term I think we've spent about £130-150 on our son but thanks to Tesco voucher exchange it's worth about £180-200.

    The most expense is on a Playmobil plane and fire engine.

    I remember my dad buying me the Playmobil yacht (with powered engine) when my brother was born and my mother flipped at the then £30 price tag. I loved it though :)
  25. richard plumb

    richard plumb Active Member

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    agree. I try and ignore cost. Sometimes I'll want to buy something expensive (like a bike), other years what the kids want is actually quite cheap (like dinosaurs), it is literally the thought that counts, and sometimes thats an expensive thought, sometimes not.
  26. quarry2006

    quarry2006 Active Member

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    Isn't Christmas a big deal for everyone? What's being from Malta got to do with the price of fish?!
  27. quarry2006

    quarry2006 Active Member

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    Coupla grand.

    Silly really because we won't be spending as much next year.
  28. Dony

    Dony Active Member

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    About £200 each (3 children)

    I used the word 'maybe' because I've no idea of Maltese culture. I don't have any other explanation as to why wealthy parents would only spend about £40 on their child's Christmas presents.

    I've also no idea why anyone would spend a coupla grand either. :)
  29. Adams0211

    Adams0211 Member

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    Same here, although I've got four kids. I also spent £180 on an Xbox and Kinect package for "the family".
  30. Jenn

    Jenn Active Member

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    I don't know if it's a case of culture or just my family but when we were children, we would get 1-3 presents at most from our parents (as far as I know anyway) with one main one and then something smaller.
    The value I don't think mattered so much but I don't think they ever spent £200 on either of us (although in the 80s £200 would have been worth more than now).

    I believe the main reason though was that we spent every Xmas with the whole family and presents were received on Xmas eve (Santa visiting us in person and all) so you'd have a pile of presents anyway (Grand parents, uncles and aunts etc.).
    One year blankets were put on the floor in the large hallway so the kids could get their toys there and play because there wasn't enough room in the lounge.
    Good times :)

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