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3 kids...Equal amount of money spent...Or equal amount of gifts?


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#1 siczlo  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 16, 2007 - 9:10 am

Do you give your kids equal amount of gifts...say 10 each or equal amount of money..say $200 each kid? My dilemma is that my oldest wants things that are much more expensive than the two younger ones. If I go by equal money, he'd only have 4 gifts, while the others have 9. But if I buy each nine, then I'm blowing budget, and oldest gets most of the budget. Its easier to find $5.00 toys for 8 and 2 year old. Not so easy for an almost 13 year old. What do you guys do ??:confused:

#2 conj  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 16, 2007 - 9:15 am

normally equal number, but if it is the oldest, they will understand the value of a dollar, equal money.
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#3 bettyn100  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 16, 2007 - 9:39 am

Equal number. Although, the oldest two normally get less in number than my youngest two because the oldest 2 gifts are more expensive.

#4 booga12345  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 16, 2007 - 9:46 am

My boys are still young 4 and 7 so we definately do equal gifts. However as they get older I will talk with them and let them know that since their gifts are more than their siblings they will get less and it will go by $ amount.

#5 jarerice  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 16, 2007 - 9:48 am

well I made a big mess up and bought more for my ds9 than for my dd3. and he got a wii on top of everything else! now i have to back track and buy her more stuff.

#6 jbdinos  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 16, 2007 - 10:10 am

We do equal # of gifts with comparable values. With clearance sales it is possible to spend more on one kid and their value be less that the original values of another kid that you spend next to nothing on. So I do equal # of gifts, seriously looking for things each would enjoy while keeping an eye on the values of the gifts so that they never question the $$$ issue. Until the youngest of them are old enough to totally understand the $$ issue and all their wishes get fairly expensive I will keep this up. Sometimes it means an older child gets some gifts that are H&B.... like body washes or lotions from BBW. Just to keep values close and fill in the # of gifts. But this year of 5 kids, a son in law and 2 grandkids... everyone except the new baby has 7 gifts. I spent the most on the 3 year old, but she is not the highest value of original prices. I spent the least on DD13 and she has the 2nd highest value. I spent the 2nd least on DS11 and his is by far the highest value... but a 200.00 set of golf clubs for 25.00 put him way over the top as I'd spent only about 25.00 total on his other 6 gifts. So although I have spent right about 50.00 on him if we go with original retail his gifts are valued nearly 400.00. But because thought was put into each child's personality and keeping it as close as possible I don't think they will question it. And they know I clearance shop a lot anyway so they expect it. DS10 had a secret santa shop at school and he was concerned about spending exactly 2.00 each on DH and myself. I explained it was not necessary and he thinks I lied and that I always spend the same on him and his siblings.... he still doesn't believe me that I don't count money..... I guess that means they think I am fair at least... lol

#7 guilliam  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 16, 2007 - 2:44 pm

We go by amount of money spent. With the age difference between our 2 boys (12 years between them) the prices of their "toys" are different. So ds5 is getting a LOT more than ds17. But we spent the same amount of $$. But ds17 is old enough to understand this.

#8 suddenly_1976  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 16, 2007 - 2:47 pm

your household is different from mine since I have 3 little ones so I do the same number (or close to it) but since you have an older child I would do equal amount and just explain to your 13 year old or ask your 13 year old would they prefer the same amount of smaller gifts or the bigger pricier gift in conversation so you kinda know how it would go over

#9 alimfp  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 16, 2007 - 2:54 pm

I'd go by number of presents, if anything. I have three but mine are all young and close in age. And they also are not old enough (yet) to notice if one gets more gifts than the other, if we probably spent X amt on one while not on the other. So right now anyway, I just get around the same number of gifts.

#10 Kat07  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 16, 2007 - 3:18 pm

We.go.by.money.spent...DS.is.12.and.knows.his.stuff.is.much.more.expensive.than.his.5. year.old.sisters.He.has.been.able.to.understand.this.for.a.couple.years.now. ---------------------- Don't.mind.the.dots....my.spacebar.is.broken.:rolleyes:

#11 siczlo  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 16, 2007 - 4:00 pm

Thanks for everyone's input. Maybe I could fill in the blanks with some socks and underwear. I don't know it seems harder to find cheap things for teen boys than girls. If I had girls i could buy earrings, hair things, make-up, etc. But boys.... It's harder. If he opens underwear or socks I think he'll be offended! Cd's are out because of the Mp3 players. So far I got him the Zune ($100), Zune travel pack ($30 on BF), Zune rugged case ($24), and a funny saying t-shirt ($12). I was going to buy the 3 month membership for Zune ($45) at Meijer. That puts me over the $200 each kid limit, while still lacking 4 presents compared to his younger brothers. My budget is tight because, as usual, I have to provide dinner Christmas Eve and Christmas day for family (ALWAYS at my house!) It would be nice if family would pitch in some $$$. I've given hints, but no one seems to get it. I spend about $300 for dinner and drinks for the 2 nights. Not to mention hours of cleaning and cooking! Don't get me wrong, I love having the family over, but gesh, it's getting to be a very costly expense that the other members in my family don't have to endure.

#12 me2  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 16, 2007 - 4:45 pm

Equal amounts of love.:) And I usually do try to make sure they have the same number of gifts to open.

#13 hwolf6330  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 16, 2007 - 5:25 pm

I spend the same amount of money on each. They are old enough to understand what things cost and why one has more to open than the other. I however feel guilty about it. I try to even it out as much as possible. I think that is why I blow my budget every year.

#14 love a deal  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 16, 2007 - 5:33 pm

My kids get equal # of gifts right now. They are only 2,3 & 5 right now, so no one has asked for anything to expensive. If someone wanted an expensive gift, I would do equal money value.

#15 jarerice  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 16, 2007 - 6:44 pm

Thanks for everyone's input. Maybe I could fill in the blanks with some socks and underwear. I don't know it seems harder to find cheap things for teen boys than girls. If I had girls i could buy earrings, hair things, make-up, etc. But boys.... It's harder. If he opens underwear or socks I think he'll be offended! Cd's are out because of the Mp3 players. So far I got him the Zune ($100), Zune travel pack ($30 on BF), Zune rugged case ($24), and a funny saying t-shirt ($12). I was going to buy the 3 month membership for Zune ($45) at Meijer. That puts me over the $200 each kid limit, while still lacking 4 presents compared to his younger brothers. My budget is tight because, as usual, I have to provide dinner Christmas Eve and Christmas day for family (ALWAYS at my house!) It would be nice if family would pitch in some $$$. I've given hints, but no one seems to get it. I spend about $300 for dinner and drinks for the 2 nights. Not to mention hours of cleaning and cooking! Don't get me wrong, I love having the family over, but gesh, it's getting to be a very costly expense that the other members in my family don't have to endure.




I've got an idea!!!!

Don't cook as much and maybe they will we the hint when their bellies are not as full this year!

#16 mom2maddynsky27  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 16, 2007 - 7:24 pm

i always do equal amount of gifts to open and i try to spend the same amount or close too it. for example..if my limit is $200 per child and i spend $100 on one gift..then the other $100 goes to matching the number of gifts. so if the gift number is 5..then they get 4 other presents that cost me only a $100 for all 4. This year I owed my older two another gift but were almost at their limit so they got a tee shirt and then boxers or slipper socks to make up their last gift.

#17 BoulderChick  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 16, 2007 - 7:49 pm

(ALWAYS at my house!) It would be nice if family would pitch in some $$$. I've given hints, but no one seems to get it


For this year, how about eating left overs on Christmas Day. My husband and I plan on making a ham and having it on Christmas Eve and then having yummy ham sandwiches on Christmas Day, so we can relax and not worry about a big dinner.

Make less side dishes, or cut out one or two of the most expensive dishes. I'm not a fan of Honey Baked Ham, so instead I pick up a spiral sliced ham at the grocery store and make my own simple glaze. Honey+Brown Sugar+Fruit Juice=Yummy ham glaze!!! Targets Archer Farms Spiral Sliced Ham is good, even without the glaze and is on sale for $1.69lb this week. Brush on the glaze and warm in the oven and you are done!

The same goes for appetizers, 2-3 types is plenty. Veggies are great because they are nice and light, especially with all of the rich holiday foods. And besides, you want them to eat dinner, since you've worked so hard preparing it.

How about having 2 types of drinks instead of a full bar. If you all drink beer, you could have beer and a punch. There are a lot of simple homemade punch recipes. I bet you can find one you like on FoodNetwork.com
http://search.foodne...archType=Recipe

For next year, ask guests to bring a side dish or their favorite drink and tell them to bring enough for everyone.

Consider having another family member host the festivities. Even if the party is at your house one day and the next at a different relatives. My DH's family enjoys Christmas Eve at a different home each year.

Next Christmas Eve have everyone over for dessert instead of dinner. On Christmas Day consider having brunch or Christmas lunch instead of Dinner. All lesser expensive meals.

Talk to your family about making some changes and having them chip in. With all of the work you put in to Christmas Eve and Christmas Day festivities, you shouldn't have to burden all of the cost.

Merry Christmas!

#18 leefamily23  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 17, 2007 - 4:42 am

We've explained this to my son (he'll be 15 in a few weeks). He's an only child, so at home it doesn't matter. BUT...my mom has a "large" budget for the grandkid's, since there's only 3 of them. We exchange gifts altogether. This year, he's getting 2 from my mom. The 5 & 3 yr old are getting about 12 each. Same thing from us to the neice/nephew. They're getting 6 gifts each. While my son is getting 2 from my sister. But we spent the same amount. So, I think once they can understand they need to be told.

#19 doublehsmom  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 17, 2007 - 4:44 am

I don't know how I did this but this year my kids are getting the same number of gifts and I spent the same amount of money on them..I spent 200.00 and they are each getting 18 to open thank god they are 2 and 4 so they are close in age..

#20 Kandy  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 17, 2007 - 5:05 am

mine are 14 and 12 and we try to stay with same # and cost. but then again they are into the same things. DD needed a new ds here is messing up. DS (12) (spoiled rotten) would fuss because she got a new one and he didn't so he is getting one...BUT now I think I may have messed up there because He has the gamecube, she has a PS2, and the Wii is in the LR and this past weekend his friends and he stayed in DD's room playing the PS2. and he has not touched his DS in over a week... We are thinking about taking the DS bundle back and getting him a PS2.

#21 justjessie99  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 17, 2007 - 6:00 am

we do equal gifts.... but also try to keep it in the same range...LOL

Jess
 

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Not really good for anything, but they bring a smile to your face when pushed down the stairs. :smirk:


#22 siczlo  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 17, 2007 - 6:14 am

I don't know how I did this but this year my kids are getting the same number of gifts and I spent the same amount of money on them..I spent 200.00 and they are each getting 18 to open thank god they are 2 and 4 so they are close in age..


Those were the days.....I remember when mine were younger and they each had 19 gifts one year. We call it the year of the Rescue Heroes!!LOL

#23 faithbargy  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 17, 2007 - 6:14 am

Hi,Usually equal amount of gifts.Also if you run out of ideas.I wrap a couple dollars in a box if I run out of ideas.There may be 2 dollars in one box,A five in the next.My kids love money so this works.However if my older daughters gifts cost alot and she is really short on gifts. I explained to her since she doesnt believe in santa.That remember when opening her gifts there may be less because hers cost alot more and she understands.The younger kids I can't tell this to they still believe. Faith

#24 siczlo  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 17, 2007 - 6:21 am

For this year, how about eating left overs on Christmas Day. My husband and I plan on making a ham and having it on Christmas Eve and then having yummy ham sandwiches on Christmas Day, so we can relax and not worry about a big dinner.

Make less side dishes, or cut out one or two of the most expensive dishes. I'm not a fan of Honey Baked Ham, so instead I pick up a spiral sliced ham at the grocery store and make my own simple glaze. Honey+Brown Sugar+Fruit Juice=Yummy ham glaze!!! Targets Archer Farms Spiral Sliced Ham is good, even without the glaze and is on sale for $1.69lb this week. Brush on the glaze and warm in the oven and you are done!

The same goes for appetizers, 2-3 types is plenty. Veggies are great because they are nice and light, especially with all of the rich holiday foods. And besides, you want them to eat dinner, since you've worked so hard preparing it.

How about having 2 types of drinks instead of a full bar. If you all drink beer, you could have beer and a punch. There are a lot of simple homemade punch recipes. I bet you can find one you like on FoodNetwork.com
http://search.foodne...archType=Recipe

For next year, ask guests to bring a side dish or their favorite drink and tell them to bring enough for everyone.

Consider having another family member host the festivities. Even if the party is at your house one day and the next at a different relatives. My DH's family enjoys Christmas Eve at a different home each year.

Next Christmas Eve have everyone over for dessert instead of dinner. On Christmas Day consider having brunch or Christmas lunch instead of Dinner. All lesser expensive meals.

Talk to your family about making some changes and having them chip in. With all of the work you put in to Christmas Eve and Christmas Day festivities, you shouldn't have to burden all of the cost.

Merry Christmas!


I like the Christmas Brunch Idea. As for drinks, usually it's beer, wine, punch, (one with rum, one without for the kiddies) Every year my aunt and uncle bring a nice floral centerpiece for the table. It's beautiful, but in my head I'm like, (how about Jewel giftcard instead?!)

#25 jbdinos  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 17, 2007 - 6:27 am

Thanks for everyone's input. Maybe I could fill in the blanks with some socks and underwear. I don't know it seems harder to find cheap things for teen boys than girls. If I had girls i could buy earrings, hair things, make-up, etc. But boys.... It's harder. If he opens underwear or socks I think he'll be offended! Cd's are out because of the Mp3 players. So far I got him the Zune ($100), Zune travel pack ($30 on BF), Zune rugged case ($24), and a funny saying t-shirt ($12). I was going to buy the 3 month membership for Zune ($45) at Meijer. That puts me over the $200 each kid limit, while still lacking 4 presents compared to his younger brothers. My budget is tight because, as usual, I have to provide dinner Christmas Eve and Christmas day for family (ALWAYS at my house!) It would be nice if family would pitch in some $$$. I've given hints, but no one seems to get it. I spend about $300 for dinner and drinks for the 2 nights. Not to mention hours of cleaning and cooking! Don't get me wrong, I love having the family over, but gesh, it's getting to be a very costly expense that the other members in my family don't have to endure.



It may be too late for this year but next year I would send out holiday invite cards with "this year we are going to have a pitch in Christmas dinner so we can all sample the specialties of each family. For example, our family is contributing... XXXXX and XXXXX"

Maybe add on, and please bring your recipe along as well as some empty bowls so we can all share the leftovers!

I think that just telling them what you want them to do is easier than the stress and hassle. My house was volunteered again this year for Christmas as we moved last year just before Thanksgiving and our house is the biggest in the family at this time and also the most centrally located. So I will do two dishes, the paper plates, and the drinks for the entire family because it's cheaper than driving around to their houses and loading/unloading our kids/gifts. But I also don't go overboard as I get stuck with all the clean up as well.

Then if I want something that is leftover, I put it in the fridge right away and expect each person to take whatever is theirs home or give it to someone else that will. We have a great time and usually way too many desserts, but not as much stress for any one person. I hope you can work out something less stressful for your dinner....

As to your son... what about boxers? Old Navy had a sale this weekend 4 for $20 and you can get cute ones, etc. Not sure how he would feel but our boys expect to get boxers or socks at least in their stockings. Or you could do men's body wash, cologne, after shave, razor, etc.... depending on his age and what kinds of stuff he needs/uses.

#26 lbuzz52  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 17, 2007 - 8:57 am

my mom always tried her best to have the same number gifts and similar money spent. when we were little, we wouldn't have noticed anythign about prices, we would have noticed a different number though, as we open ours one gift at a time. now that i am older, i would be more likely to noticed by value. i would just try to be fair about it and dont stress over it. if you are off in number, maybe you have somethign you can wrap together or somethign you can split into two pacakges?

#27 dmmiller  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 17, 2007 - 9:46 am

I try to get the same number of gifts, but my DS12 understands alittle better that his gifts cost a lot more. I'm sure if you explain to him, either before christmas or right after, he'll surprise you with understanding. I might have missed it, but what age is your son? We might be able to come up with some cool/cheap ideas for you. :)

#28 tntsmomie  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 17, 2007 - 12:02 pm

I'm so lucky that my kids aren't old enough to play the "count the presents" game!! :D My kids: DD is 5 (almost), DS is 2. We do try to keep it all equal, but at the moment we're not too concerned b/c we know the kids aren't. I'm sure I'll be singing a different tune in a few years!!

#29 siczlo  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 17, 2007 - 1:58 pm

I try to get the same number of gifts, but my DS12 understands alittle better that
his gifts cost a lot more. I'm sure if you explain to him, either before christmas or right after, he'll surprise you with understanding.

I might have missed it, but what age is your son?
We might be able to come up with some cool/cheap ideas for you. :)


My oldest is 12, well almost 13 as he says...

#30 siczlo  OFFLINE  

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Posted Dec 17, 2007 - 2:00 pm

It may be too late for this year but next year I would send out holiday invite cards with "this year we are going to have a pitch in Christmas dinner so we can all sample the specialties of each family. For example, our family is contributing... XXXXX and XXXXX"

Maybe add on, and please bring your recipe along as well as some empty bowls so we can all share the leftovers!

I think that just telling them what you want them to do is easier than the stress and hassle. My house was volunteered again this year for Christmas as we moved last year just before Thanksgiving and our house is the biggest in the family at this time and also the most centrally located. So I will do two dishes, the paper plates, and the drinks for the entire family because it's cheaper than driving around to their houses and loading/unloading our kids/gifts. But I also don't go overboard as I get stuck with all the clean up as well.

Then if I want something that is leftover, I put it in the fridge right away and expect each person to take whatever is theirs home or give it to someone else that will. We have a great time and usually way too many desserts, but not as much stress for any one person. I hope you can work out something less stressful for your dinner....

As to your son... what about boxers? Old Navy had a sale this weekend 4 for $20 and you can get cute ones, etc. Not sure how he would feel but our boys expect to get boxers or socks at least in their stockings. Or you could do men's body wash, cologne, after shave, razor, etc.... depending on his age and what kinds of stuff he needs/uses.


Love the holiday invite card idea...For next year obviously.
I just noticed he is getting some fuzz above the lip...a razor..I don't think I'm ready for this LOL




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