This idea for birthdays is my new favorite. Let me back up a little and explain. Kids have brought an enormous amount of stuff into our home. This all started with baby showers before they were born, and then continued with every Christmas, birthday, and holiday in between. My oldest soon turns four, and with this knowledge comes the dread of the onslaught of gifts we will receive.
Then, I read about a fiver party. This idea is the perfect solution to the overwhelming problem of too many things, while also giving family and friends a way to give. Each person gives $5.00 with the understanding that we will take our kiddo to go pick out one thing he wants with the money he receives. Or another possibility is to plan on buying one big item that everyone contributes five bucks towards.
There are several things I like about the first idea. First, our kiddo gets to pick out something he likes, instead of me guessing what he may enjoy receiving, or having to come up with a list of possibilities for everyone else to purchase. Second, it's an experience. We all get to get out of the house and look at fun things: toys, something for his room, clothes, whatever he is interested in. Third, we can start explaining how money works. We can show him how much money he has, and show him how much things cost at the store. And then, explain he has enough or not enough to buy x, y, or z thing. Fourth, this helps stop the toy pile from growing exponentially each holiday and birthday, and contributing to an overwhelming mess that doesn't get played with.
I hope this helps encourage family and friends to participate and give to your little one, while also being thoughtful about how we choose to raise our kiddo with less value on the amount of stuff. Experiences and a small amount of stuff is our jam. What's your jam?
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