We ended up going shopping today – this was something we didn’t think we’d do until yesterday. We went to one store at about noon. We didn’t buy a lot. We didn’t get into the “Black Friday” rush. I think we also bought something online that Joe saw was a great deal, that we’d already planned to buy.
Last year, we ended up doing mainly board games. We’ll do a few this year and a few other things. But we try to get gifts that encourage interaction with the family – most of the games last year did this (not just Kai’s gifts, but ours as well).
We also like doing “educational” gifts, though we take a very liberal definition of that. (Games, at least the ones we get, almost always fall under that category.)
We’ll also be getting some gifts for Kai that are for things we KNOW he likes or things he’s asked for repeatedly – either building on an interest he already has or investing in something we know he’ll be able to build on.
We also do things that are functional/that we know he needs – for example, fun clothing/pajamas to help replace some of the stuff he’s growing out of. I’m hoping to do pajamas on Christmas Eve, for example.
This time of year is very “gift-heavy” in this house – Joe’s birthday and my birthday are both in November, Christmas is in December, and Kai’s birthday is in January, so we do a lot of talking/planning for this. This year, we’ve done a lot more “compass” planning (general) versus GPS planning (step-by-step or specifics) planning.
I like doing it this way, though it’s not my natural inclination. My mother was a dedicated Black Friday shopper and planned everything in great detail and bought lots on Black Friday and my dad and my stepmother went Black Friday shopping, though they usually didn’t buy much – often, it was for the door prizes and freebies and such. But this is far less stressful. Last year, we didn’t do shopping at all on Black Friday. We got a cute little kitty from the shelter – Zelda. It was my birthday and we were heading over the mountains, so this is the first year I’m really experiencing this with Joe. I hope it’s how we continue doing things.
Does your family have a gifting philosophy for holidays/birthdays?