Christmas Traditions III – Stockings and Presents

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I love planning for Christmas, and that involves many lists and ideas and thoughts that go into gifting. On the other hand, I am trying not to invite too much stuff into the house. I really don’t like clutter, and Christmas seems a time when it can easily creep in.
What I love is making the ordinary special, and rather than choose random ‘stocking stuffers’ that end up as clutter, I am a big fan of using practical little presents.

We didn’t have Christmas stockings until last year when I made some for the boys. Now I actually wouldn’t mind some for the grown ups too, I’m having too much fun with them. I have some ideas what I would put in the Mr’s stocking, but I’m not too sure who would fill mine?? Ha!

So here are some stocking filler ideas:

  • an orange and a coin (got to love tradition)
  • new socks, gloves or a hat
  • toiletries: a bar of soap, a nice shampoo or bath bubbles
  • their own towel or face cloth
  • a magazine or a new book (also great to keep early risers entertained for a little longer on Christmas morning)
  • an audio book (as above)
  • bookmark (at least in our house, you can never find a proper one)
  • a new toothbrush/ tooth paste
  • last year, each of my boys got a cuddly penguin in their stocking as well that is still loved today. I’m not sure about this year, I might need to survey the stuffed animal situation first!

 

With all the excitement leading up to Christmas, the Advent elves and calendar, Christmas Eve bag and Christmas Stocking, there are still the presents under the tree in the end.
It is easy to see how it can all get a bit much!
But I find that if I keep the majority of calendars and stocking presents practical and useful, with plenty of things to do or munch up, we don’t end up with excessive amounts of clutter.

For actual presents, I once came across this rule of thumb: one thing they want, one thing they need, one thing to wear, one thing to read.
I have f0und this so very useful. In our family, we often stick to the first one or two things for presents for the kids, and outsource the others to grandparents.

Very inspirational are Nourishing Minimalism‘s Clutter Free Gift Guides.
Here are a few more ideas:

  • a magazine subscription
  • wall calendar
  • cinema or theatre voucher
  • book shop/ iTunes gift card
  • voucher for a meal out or a cafe visit
  • board games or puzzles
  • art materials
  • music/ instruments
  • cook book/ utensils
  • membership for a museum or the zoo
  • dress up clothes
  • photo album
  • supplies for outdoors: gardening, den building or pond dipping
  • books (always my favourite thing to give)

 

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