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How to set Gift Expectations with your Children this Christmas
How to set gifts expectations with your children without feeling guilty is a very important step to take as a parent living on a lower budget.
For most parents who live on a lower budget, Christmas is a season of whoop melting heart..hmm (eye-popping) and to set gifts expectations is devastating to the children at this time. You know how fast kids could be when it comes to telling friends about the gifts they expect for Christmas.
They may also have made up their minds on their wish and may have even boosted before their friends. This is a very challenging moment for families on a lower budget.
You can either set the limit or expect a stretched not only by your immediate family but also from your extended family if they all look up to you for help.
Children love to receive gifts on special days, especially on their birthdays and on Christmas. Every parent wants to also see their children happy with the gifts given to them. But If you as a parent cannot afford expensive gifts. You can always go for whatever you can afford.
We have many Children, mostly in Asia and Africa who don't even know what Christmas is, let alone look out for gifts on this day.
Teaching your children most especially the reason for the celebration of Christmas is very important than just giving them gifts with the Santa Claus and gifts under the Xmas tree belief system.
I remember walking through our street as a young girl back in the days. I met the less privileged with their kids on tattered clothes, with little food and some coins on their plates. My heart melted and I wondered how long they have to survive on the alms given to them by the people.
The amazing thing was that these kids were full of joy and they all danced to the music playing on the streets. The feeling alone is something else-yes! You feel the spirit of the season (Christmas) in the air through some Christmas songs and glittering streets lights decorations.
Everyone wears a smile and are so happy mommies going for their groceries to a nearby shop or markets. You suddenly experience inflation in the prices of goods and foodstuffs but Chicken is a must buy for almost every family. My parent did a great job, in making sure that we had what was really necessary during Christmas and they were what we asked for. That is how I'm raising my crew (Children).
This season is a time when visitors troop your house as if the referee has just blown his whistle expect to have your uncles and aunties you've not seen for months as special visitors for those of us from …..
But the most challenging thing as the first daughter was that the kitchen was part of my restroom until all the visitors were served food and drinks. Our parents made us understand that the season of Christmas is a season of love and we should learn to show love to anyone we come across, most especially the less privileged on the streets.
It is our family tradition to go to the church on the Christmas Eve and also on Christmas day, the services are mostly two hours of praise and worship with a short sermon on the birth of our saviour Jesus Christ the reason for the season!
If you are on a tight budget, I believe informing your Children about it will be the best thing to do as a parent. No, it won't make you feel worthless as a mom or dad but rather, your Children will respect you more for being open and honest with them.
Ask your Children what they will like to have for Christmas and also write out what you think you can afford or the equivalents of their choice and discuss that with them so that they won't feel disappointed if you can't afford their wish.
In other words, they need to know they are getting something lighter this Christmas. This involves you just coming out to say, “James, I know you really wish to have a new iPhone this Christmas, but it is just not in our budget.” This will be especially true if you've given better gifts in the past.
- It is important to help your kids develop a spirit of contentment and gratitude as they grow older. If you've set a high bar, then your children will automatically assume this season will be just like last season. Entitled children will more than likely turn to entitled adults.
- Help your children understand how fortunate they are to have what they already have. Help them get involved with any volunteer work around your neighbourhood this season. That way, they will learn to see that Christmas is all about so much more than just getting gifts It's about loving and serving others.
Set the records straight with your kids when it comes to giving gifts, you make this clear ahead of time because it will help to avoid those mornings of teary eyes and ungratefulness. I know you love your children and seeing them smile is one of the life's greatest joys. That's what makes you an awesome parent.
Christmas is the spirit of giving without a thought of getting. It is happiness because we see joy in people. It is forgetting self and finding time for others. It is discarding the meaningless and stressing the true values. Thomas S. Monson
I want to know how you will tell your children about your going on a lower budget this season assuming you find yourself in a tight situation.