How and Why I’m Having a Minimal Christmas
The Winter season is one of my favorite times of year. I love the snow, the family, the food, the ambiance. However, often times what comes with all the holiday joy, is the dreaded holiday stress and anxiety.
We often feel the need to impress every family member with new and shiny gifts, or maybe an extravagant feast.
This year, I decided to embrace frugality and participate in a minimal Christmas. Gasp! How is that even possible? Don’t you love your family? Don’t they deserve all of the things? Yes they do, but there are more important things than toys and things.
I have my own beliefs and opinions about this time of year, and I want to share it with you.
I believe that holiday “gift giving” season is often wasteful, superficial, and unnecessary. Phew! I said it. I know it’s a little harsh but hear me out.
Like most of you I’m sure, I love to spoil my loved ones and show them how much I care for them by giving them gifts…to an extent. Gift giving has become extremely materialistic, and excessive. Nowadays we don’t appreciate what we have because we’re constantly receiving shiny new things all the time. We don’t have time to appreciate it.
Excessive holiday gift giving is so wasteful!
Does your mom really need a new television EVERY year? Does the little human in your life really need their 30th baby doll? Or does your aunt (you never talk to) need some stupid gift, because you don’t know her well enough to get her something meaningful? Absolutely not. Think about all the waste and garbage created in your household. Yikes! The holidays are about who you spend it with, not what you gift and receive.
Don’t go into debt spending money for the holidays, it’s just unnecessary. In 10 years, you’ll remember the memories you made with your loved ones, not the gifts you were given. So don’t let the holidays stress you out. If you don’t have the money, don’t spend it. If all you can give is your love, give your love.
Show your family and friends that you love them by spending quality time with them, laughing, and sharing stories.
For my family, this year I’m limiting one gift for each close family member. I’m trying to make everything myself if I can. I would tell you what I’m making, but that would give away the secret! So shhh… If I’m not making it myself, I’m buying something useful and sustainable.
However, there are a few exceptions. I’m spoiling my boyfriend and dog child with more than one gift.
How do I not buy all of the things?
My boyfriend and I created three guidelines this year that we’re going to follow.
1. One Christmas Eve box filled with new pajamas, and little treats for a cozy movie night together to open and use Christmas Eve.
I’m particularly excited for this one! Most people love a new pair of warm and comfy jammies on Christmas, and what better time to use them…than the Eve of Christmas?! Think about it. You wake up on Christmas morning with new jammies on, open your stockings, and make breakfast together…in your pajamas?! What’s better than that?!
2. One stocking full of small, useful, and necessary gifts to open Christmas morning.
This will more than likely include items that involve daily hygiene and usage. You know, the soaps, the razors, the scrubs, the socks, the coffee mugs…
3. One handmade gift and/or bought gift to open on Christmas morning.
My boyfriend and I originally decided on one handmade gift. I’ll admit it! I went a tad over and bought a little somthin’ somthin’ to go with his handmade gift. My excuse is that it doesn’t fit in the stocking! (WHOOPS) Take the time to make it meaningful, and there will be less room for excess.
And that’s it!
This still may seem excessive to some, but this is a major downgrade from what I’ve usually done in the past. We decided to be more minimal, but also traditional as a compromise. We just couldn’t give up the stockings and little gifts!
How can you be less wasteful this holiday season?
Is it worth it to you?