Getting the Most Mileage From Your Kids’ Christmas Gifts

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Today, so many children are blessed with way more than they need.  In fact many children end up spoiled and honestly have too much.  So one of the things that I personally want to instill in my children is to be thankful and appreciative for all that they have.  This is really hard to do after Christmas because they get such an abundant amount of toys from our family.  Sometimes, I am saddened by the level of mass consumerism that takes place, but I honestly try to do what I can to teach them positive values and to be appreciative for their things.  So this year,
I wanted to try something different with all of the Christmas toys that they got.  I am trying to make their Christmas toys last all year long with them getting a few new things here and there.

Have your child pick out their favorite few toys to open on Christmas day.  This means that instead of opening all of their toys you will just be opening a few of the favorites.  While this might disappoint some of your family or friends explain to them that you want your child to really enjoy all of the toys that they receive and that the best way for them to do that is to open them slowly.

Have a new toy day where your child gets to pick out more of their new toys from Christmas to open.  You can have a set day each month or you can just let them pick out a new toy when they seem bored with what they have.  Giving your children less can make them more appreciative of what they do have.  I have noticed personally that the years when my children receive less that they seem to appreciate what they do receive more.

Be willing to “hide” a few toys so that they will get excited about them again.  Sometimes my kids are so focused on the opening that they just open everything and do not even know what to play with.  It has worked out favorably in the past for us to put some of their toys away and to give them back to them later.  This means that they get a few surprises from Christmas that they might have opened but have not really played with much.

Use games as an exciting way to have a weekly family game night.  Choose one game to open and choose a new game each week.  Even if you only play one game a week it can last all year rotating the games that your children get.  We actually chose to buy more games than toys for our children this year in anticipation of being able to plan game nights with them.

Talk to your children about donating and getting rid of the old toys that they no longer use.  Instead of taking back duplicate toys encourage your children to choose to donate them. Explain to them that something could make a child’s day at the local hospital or elsewhere and then call and find out where excepts donations.  Some places might even allow your child to give their toy to the child which can be a very rewarding experience for your child.

Learning how to make the Christmas gifts last throughout the year is easy with the abundance that most children receive.  It also helps your child to expect less and to be happy with less when they have to wait a while to play with some of their new toys.

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