House and Home Parenting
Maria Martin  

Decluttering Christmas

This year we have decided to take the “stuff” out of Christmas. I find myself getting stressed about Christmas earlier and earlier every year. Partly because of the shopping we feel pressured to engage in and partly because of the inevitable bombardment of…stuff.

We have enough stuff and I have enough stress so this year we just aren’t doing it. 

For the first time ever I’m doing away with the polite “oh, you don’t have to get us anything” because that doesn’t actually mean anything. We have a fairly definitive list of things we would like across varying budgets and we are letting people know. It’s mostly stuff that we need, things that will make our lives that much easier. Things like stock pots and storage boxes for us, swimming lessons and tickets for our 3 year old.

We have warned people that if they don’t tell us something they want they won’t get anything, because we are done buying gifts for the sake of gifting.

Gift wrap is out the window, if I don’t already have it I’m not buying it. I’ll wrap in fabric or use Christmas stamps on brown boxes to pretty them up.

Certain things we’ve had a lot of over the last few years, we’ve  gently asked not to have more because we are still enjoying the ones we have! This includes framed images and wall art – our house is cast concrete and it takes hours to drill into the walls to hang things. T-shirts are taking over, my husband gets 2 or 3 each year and they don’t wear out that quickly. Alcohol is a classic – we actually bought our own wedding bar, we still have the leftovers stashed away and at the last count, we had 7 bottles of Jack Daniels. We aren’t big drinkers at all so we imagine this will last us forever.

We also encourage second hand purchases – some of the best toys, clothes and gadgets we have came from charity shops (they just don’t make things like they used to!), give me 20 year old Brio trains and  Duplo any day!

Santa will make an appearance with a couple of hardy wooden toys and some clothes and then we will focus on spending the day in togetherness with good food and family. I am so excited.

Now, before anyone says I’m ungrateful or entitled, I hear ya. I’ve been tormenting myself over this since July because it isn’t the “done thing”. My friends and family understand my situation, I’m sure there will still be some little token gifts that I will love anyway, I’m just taking the stress and the guess work out of the festive season because I need to start enjoying Christmas again.

Are you bucking any trends this year?

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0 thoughts on “Decluttering Christmas

  1. kateonthinice

    Good on you doing it your way and one that you hope will keep you mentally well too. I am taking a very simple approach this year and my children seem to prefer that these days now they are all teenagers. Husband hates all fuss on special days so it will suit him too. Heartily sick like so many mums of being pretty much the only one doing the hard work, saving and thinking in advance of the day. Letting myself off the hook as I turn 50 this month on many things and Christmas will be the first test of pulling that off. Years ago my late Mum announced she would no longer be doing the full Christmas dinner thing as she ended up missing actual Christmas and after that we dined out on Christmas Day at restaurants. I have fond memories of her dinners and the restaurant ones but I am so proud that she was ahead of her time and sometimes said enough was enough which I guess these days we would brand as self-care #MMBC

  2. Mummy Lauretta

    I think it's great that you have done this because so much of Christmas is about consumerism and just buying for the sake of it and you end up with things you don't want. Thanks so much for linking up at #KCACOLS. Hope you come back again next time.

  3. Lana Pummill

    I love this idea. I am starting to feel that with my kids. I have a 5 year old and 2 year old. Every year people ask what they need. I try to tell them clothes, etc…but it seems that most want to buys kids \”fun\” gifts. They don't need anymore presents! We always go through their toys right before Christmas and donate a bunch. #KCACOLS

  4. Sensational Learning with Penguin

    I think it sounds great that you’re doing this, it can certainly get out of hand in a lot of families. It seems to me as if quite a lot of people are trying to curbe the Christmas madness, and focus more on relaxing with loved ones, which is great to see. We won’t be buying too many gifts, mainly due to budget, but I don’t think we’d be buying lots of ‘stuff’ anyway. Thanks so much for linking up with #KCACOLS, hope you come back again next time x

  5. Helena TheQueenofCollage

    I agree with you that charity shops are a wonderful place in which to pick up toys. #MMBC

  6. Sarah Barber

    Well done to your mum standing up to the pressure, and as you've said, you have fond memories of both so not doing Christmas conventionally doesn't make it any less special! Thank you for reading and commenting!

  7. Sarah Barber

    I think the same can be said of lots of holidays now! Thanks for commenting 🙂

  8. Sarah Barber

    And all the \”fun\” gifts are the ones their parents are guaranteed to HATE hahaha! Thanks for commenting!

  9. Sarah Barber

    Thank you for commenting!

  10. Sarah Barber

    I've always loved a bargain from a charity shop! And better is taking the kids to donate toys they don't play with anymore (or at all!) Thank you for commenting

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