Merry Minimalist Non-Consumerist Christmas

All these ads for Christmas and Holiday crap really irritate me.

I know that parents want to give their children EVERYTHING they want for Christmas. But when you have to put hundreds of dollars of toys on layaway because you can't pay for them... that's not Christmas. That's going into debt.

If you want to buy your mother a tv for Christmas but have to put it on a credit card, that's not Christmas, that's going into debt.

You have to make Christmas and holidays a time for the spirit of giving - but giving doesn't have to be a gift. Giving doesn't have to make you stress about money.

Of course there are going to be the parents that give their children the newest toys, the latest and greatest gadgets, the $100 sweaters, the $150 jeans, new iPods, new iPhones... But if you can't afford those things, you don't have to buy them just to "keep up with the Jones'" because Christmas consumerism shouldn't work like that.

And unfortunately (or fortunately), we live in America where it seems to be that if you don't have the latest and greatest, you don't fit in.

In the past few months I've been reading a lot of non-consumerism blogs and the meaning behind them really speaks to me. I don't think I can be a non-consumer simply because there are just things that we need (new or used, it doesn't matter) - and I think that when people are inundated with all these ads for Christmas toys and new gadgets and the lines become blurred between WANT and NEED.

Do you NEED a new television? NO

Do you WANT a new television? YES

Do you NEED new underwear? YES

Do you WANT new underwear? NO

I hate seeing people blur the lines between NEEDING to pay rent and WANTING to give gifts. There is no need to put yourself into a spot between a rock and hard place when purchasing gifts. 

It's time to think about NEEDS, not WANTS when it comes to giving to children for Christmas. I think the lovely advertising folks have really done a great job advertising and making it seem as if WANTS are NEEDS (because that is their job, right?). ALL KIDS NEED A NEW TABLET. ALL KIDS NEED NEW LEGOS. ALL KIDS NEED NEW EVERYTHING!!! 

Did we go overboard this year on gifts? Probably.

The Monkey is getting an easel for artwork, an Anna dress up dress, new clothes, art supplies, probably some Matchbox cars. 

Is she getting her own tablet? No, she's only 2. I don't see the need for a tablet for her. I see the need for her to be creative, to share my love of art with her and Bimmer Man's love of cars, to make sure that she knows that creativity will always be a part of her life - especially when educational funding is cut for the arts in schools when she is older. 

Gifts don't have to be expensive and gifts don't have to break the bank.

Christmas advertising just irritates me.

It doesn't have to be a pile of gifts. It doesn't have to be a season of debt. 

Christmas isn't perfect for everyone, and that's ok.

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