Wednesday, November 13, 2013

'Tis the season of toys

What Mom? No toys?
I came across a blog recently that really hit home, it's from Christella Morris of called "The Gift of Not Giving a Thing" (read it HERE). It discusses the obsession of "things" during the holidays. As an adult it seems easier to get the things you need and ask for the things you want. But with children it seems it is all about quantity. John and I started feeling overwhelmed with gifts after Sawyer's first Christmas last year and with his 1st Birthday just a few weeks after. A rather large collection of "things"has started to collect, most of which would just sit waiting for a spare moment of his time.

I don't want to sound ungrateful because believe me, we feel truly blessed.  We were so very thankful for all the outpouring of love for our new son but didn't know what to do with everything, plus let's be honest, some things he may never use (except diapers + clothes, those come in handy). I toyed (pun intended) with the idea of suggesting friends/family donate to a cause for his 1st birthday but got nervous I would offend people. After reading Christella's blog, I have decided I want to join her new tradition. Sawyer is still young enough that he isn't "expecting" anything for Christmas and if we start now of giving him "experiences" and activity-based gifts I don't think he will ever want anything else.

My favorite quote from her article explains why this is so important:

"This is what I would like for my boys to grow up with. Not mountains of toys (which are growing bigger by the minute, I swear!) but experiences and close relationships with the people in their lives who matter most."

just a few of the toys from Sawyer's first Christmas
So, let me suggest that if you are trying to think of that "perfect" toy for Sawyer, or any child for that matter, think about what may stay with them longer. While he loves Wreck it Ralph now, he might be over it next week. Instead of something he might tire of, he would probably love it if you took him to 1984 to play video games just like in the movie. Think about it, what is your favorite childhood memory? Did it involve a thing or toy? I know some of my favorite memories are not of things but of places I went and who I was there with. 

How about a play date or get-together. Take him to the park, zoo or to paint pottery. Show him something he has never seen before. Take an adventure or get books at the library. 

The gift of a memory is not only priceless but unforgettable.

He is blessed to have everything he needs, but building a relationship will last way longer than any new toy. Just a thought this holiday season. I feel so truly blessed to even be able to write a blog like this because many families aren't fortunate enough to get Christmas Gifts. We will be donating his old toys he doesn't use to a charity to hopefully help out a family in need and make room for whatever might be under the tree this year. 

Happy Holidays!!

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