Something I grapple with every year at Christmas is how much I should be spending on my kids' gifts, and how much is too much. They're not spoiled by any means. Their parents are a writer and a cop, after all. But they don't want for much. Recently, I've been seeing stories pop up all over about celebrities completely eschewing Christmas gifts entirely, and I wonder if they're not onto something. The reason why some celebrities are skipping Christmas presents this year might make you question the contents of your Amazon cart as well.
The truth is that many of our children have more stuff than they'll ever need. And every season, the year's "hot gifts" become more elaborate and expensive than before. Game systems, gigantic doll houses that light up and talk to you, ride-on stuffed ponies, and motorized mini Cadillacs are all popular gifts this year. And here's the thing: Many of them will be forgotten or ignored before the next Christmas season, when we inevitably shell out even more cash for even bigger gifts. It feels like it takes away something essential away from the holiday. Like charity and gratitude are somehow less important than having the underside of your tree resemble Target's toy section. But now, with celebrities like these coming forward saying "Yeah, no thanks," maybe we can all re-examine what the holiday is really about.
1. Chip and Jo
I am a diehard Fixer Upper fanatic. Chip and Joanna are more than just couple goals, they're parenting goals as well. With five kids and a successful business, they could easily go overboard with gifts and presents each year, but according to People, that's not what they do. They choose to buy gifts for others and give them to who needs it most. As Chip wrote in his column for Magnolia Journal, “I started to think about how we could impact our kids’ lives in a real big-picture sort of way. They were still young, but we’d been through enough Christmases as a family of six to know how quickly presents can get out of hand.”
2. Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher
Kunis said that she and Ashton choose charity over gifts for their kids, reported Huffington Post, for a very relatable reason: Their kids get elaborate, over-the-top gifts from their grandparents, and they're just babies. They want their kids to grow up knowing that there is more to life than just what others can buy for you, and I think we can all get that. They're not "anti-gift," they're just not in favor of over gifting.
3. Kim and Kanye
Possibly the most famous parents in the United States other than the ones in the White House, the West family doesn't give their kids Christmas gifts, reported StyleCaster. They said that they want to teach their children some semblance of humility, which would be very difficult given the circumstances of their childhood. This is just one way they are trying to combat the problems of raising your child in the spotlight.
4. Kristin Cavallari
Kristin Cavallari has an old-fashioned spin on this one. Her kids get traditional gifts, but as far as the stockings go? Whether or not they're filled with goodies is determined by her children's behavior, according to Us Weekly. It's the way Cavallari was raised, as she explained: “Growing up, the elves would come every day before Christmas, and if you were good, they’d leave a little something in your stocking, and if you were bad, you got coal."
Personally, I'm not a fan of a punitive Christmas, but that's just me. I also don't believe that most children can be bad. Their behavior might make your hair stand on end and add a little extra cab to your glass at bedtime, but they're new and inherently good creatures.
5. Dr. Phil
Dr. Phil and his wife have made a career out of doling out parenting advice so this should not come as a surprise. As reported by StyleCaster, Dr. Phil and Robin McGraw believe that what kids really need during the holidays is their parent's presence, not presents. "Instead of tangible gifts, how about spending some time together?" Dr. Phil said on his show. "Be careful that you aren’t teaching them that emotions can be healed by a trip to the mall."
6. Ewan McGregor and Eve Mavrakis
While Ewan McGregor didn't explicitly state that he doesn't give his kids Christmas presents, he did say that he's not keen on giving a kid everything they want whenever they want it, according to StyleCaster. He said he believes it engenders a sense of entitlement that he doesn't want his children to develop.
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