4 gift rule

4 gift rule for Christmas, a minimalist Christmas, Alifeleadsimply single mommy blog, rooted in faith
4 gift rule for Christmas, a minimalist Christmas, Alifeleadsimply single mommy blog, rooted in faith

Christmas is here. A time of joyous giving. But unfortunately for some, the festive season comes with its own set of challenges and headaches. The two biggest complaints (looking at myself here, put your hand up if you can agree with me) seem to be 1. Finances and 2. Volume. So often our kids get too much, and it costs us way more than just an arm and a leg. Too many new toys, clothes that they never wear because they have too much, gadgets that they never seem to use. The festive season becomes a time of festively wasting, and that wastes your money as well.

Then one wonderful year, when I was convinced I will become a minimalist (laugh hysterically – is that even possible?!?) I came across this novel idea. The 4 gift rule. Only 4 gifts? What?!?! Some of you might be thinking “who gives 4 gifts in any way, that is way more than we give”. You, my friend, are the exception to the rule. For most of us (yes, I am referring to us as a tribe, the excessive gift-givers tribe) Christmas can quickly get out of hand, especially if you allow yourself to run free.

This becomes a very expensive sport, especially if you consider the life expectancy of some of the gifts. Ever bought an expensive drone that crashed and broke on its maiden flight? Or a new cricket bat set that was played to smithereens by the adults, after Christmas lunch? True story, in both cases.

I think that is what made the 4 gift rule so appealing to me. By only buying 4 gifts you can afford to spring for a little better gift, which will hopefully mean it will last for longer, or at least be more loved than the pile of cheap knick-knacks.

What is the 4 gift rule?

It is actually so simple. You are only allowed to buy 4 gifts for each child (or anyone else you love to spoil with gifts):

4 gift rule for Christmas, a minimalist Christmas, Alifeleadsimply single mommy blog, rooted in faith
  • Something they want
  • Something they need
  • Something to wear
  • Something to read

Christmas gift guide for toddler girls and little princesses

Christmas gift guide for toddler girls and little princesses, local selection, Alifeleadsimply single mama (1)
  • Something they want

This category includes any toy, dress-up clothing or items that they have been pinning after. This would be the spoil category.

  • Something they need

This category includes things that they need, but that is still special enough to count as a gift, such as a new backpack, hair accessories, an umbrella, new hat, or educational toys.

  • Something to wear

You guessed it – clothing, but not your everyday run of the mill pieces. These must be special, different and unique. You can even give this gift on Christmas eve (in the case of pyjamas) or early on Christmas day (especially if it is something special to wear to church and lunch).

  • Something to read

We need to raise a reading generation, so give them books! My girls love to read, books are always a spoil.

4 categories, each guiding you to buy something special and worthwhile. 4 Gifts. Sure that won’t break the bank?

Now if you are one of those people who had a mini heart-attack when you heard I am encouraging people to buy FOUR gifts, let me reassure you – if you normally only buy one, then please you do you.

The way I see it?

I usually end up buying way more than 4 gifts, so when I work according to this guideline I at least have some structure. Plus I divide the gifts – I give one, the sisters gift each other, the pets give a gift (yes, our pets give gifts) and Santa gives the last. 4 gifts.

Did this help me become a minimalist? Pfffff. No. Not even close. Did I feel better about my spending habits? Yes to a thousand times. And when you are doing Christmas with kids on a single mama income, that makes all the difference, don’t you agree?

I hope this helps to guide you into the festive season feeling a bit lighter, with a clearer idea of what to buy and how to spoil your kids.

Merry Christmas all!

4 gift rule for Christmas, a minimalist Christmas, Alifeleadsimply single mommy blog, rooted in faith
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