As a parent, I’ve always had mixed feeling about my kids believing in Santa Claus. On one hand, I wanted them to have the thrill of believing Santa comes down the chimney every year to bring them presents. But I also didn’t want them to think they hadn’t been good this year if “Santa” didn’t give them a ton of presents. Some years, we just can’t afford too many gifts. I remember it took a few years for us to even purchase a cheap smartphone with a cell phone spy app, so we could keep an eye on our oldest son. So together, my husband and I came up with a compromise that has worked out beautifully for our family. It might work for yours, too.
All of our kids grow up learning about Santa. They get to experience those unforgettable, childhood Christmas memories. But, Santa brings them each one tech gift each year. Just one. The rest of their gifts come from Mom and Dad. Some years, Santa’s gift has been a cheap electronic toy that was on sale because he was broke that year. Other years, Santa has come through with iPhones (complete with a cell phone spy app), iPads, the latest gaming console, or a new TV. My kids never know what Santa is going to bring them. So they get to look forward to receiving that gift each year, without feeling like they didn’t behave well enough to receive as many presents as some of their friends.
Meanwhile, gifts from Mom and Dad tend to be clothes, toys, board games, or special keepsakes such as ornaments. This way, they also know what it’s like to receive personal gifts from their parents. In addition, they can start an ornament collection that they can use for their own holiday traditions when they grow older.
How We Afford It
Now I know what you’re thinking – it’s not possible for every family to give their kids expensive electronics. But let me tell you – I’ve been broke around Christmas many times, but “Santa” was still able to give them their one tech gift. Usually, I decide at the beginning of the year what they’re getting and start saving up for it. I put a few dollars from each paycheck into a special savings account, which is only used only for Santa’s gifts. This money adds up pretty quickly over the next few months, so I’m able to figure out how much I need to budget for all of my kids’ tech gifts.
I also pay attention to sales and shop for the best deals. Even if you’re on a tight budget, it’s definitely possible to get your kids some new electronics. Plus, they’re a worthwhile investment when you can track what they’re doing with a cell phone spy app. You’ll have better peace of mind because you can always make sure they’re safe. You just have to be a savvy shopper. Be ready to jump on deals and special sales as soon as you see them.