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Give Memories Instead of Gifts

Twelve months ago, you were in the exact same place: standing in an overcrowded shopping mall, staring at the rows of brightly colored packages that screamed to be taken home with you. You had no idea what to get for you kids then and you still don’t have a clue this year. The truth is, your kids don’t want for much. And they certainly don’t need anything. So, you spend your hard earned dollars on presents that you aren’t excited to give them. You buy stuff just so they’ll have something, anything, to open on Christmas morning.

You’ve asked them what they want but they don’t know, without a trip to the store or a peek at their computer, which immediately tells you that they don’t really WANT anything. The advertisements are basically telling your kids what they want and they are relaying the message to you.

This is not how you want Christmas to be. You know there is so much more to Christmas than just presents but how do you indulge in the good stuff? It’s easy. This year for Christmas, give childhood memories instead of gifts. Trust me, you’ll never look back.

To help you get started, I’ve gathered up 10 sure-fire ways to give memories instead of gifts.

Experience Christmas like never before! Check out these 10 ideas to help you give memories instead of gifts. It'll be the best Christmas of your life!

Family Gift:

Instead of buying everyone too many presents, try combining all the money you would spend on Christmas and splurging on a family gift that everyone will love. Whether it’s the latest game system or an outdoor toy, the family will love it. If your family enjoys board games, grab a few of the pricier games that you’ve been drooling over but just couldn’t squeeze into your budget. If you’re sports fanatics, try buying season passes to a pro sports team. Giving only family gifts is the perfect way to help kids feel less entitled, too!

Baking Day:

Instead of spending your hard earned money on stuff that won’t even be appreciated, try spending the day with your kids. Host a baking day, with the whole family.  Spend the day gathered in the kitchen, mixing ingredients and swaying along to some Christmas tunes. Cookies, cakes, fudge, cinnamon rolls and pies will be the perfect snack to finish off your Christmas. You can even buy super-affordable aprons {these are less than $2.50 each!!!} and allow everyone to decorate their own before you start baking.

Throw a Party:Experience Christmas like never before! Check out these 10 ideas to help you give memories instead of gifts. It'll be the best Christmas of your life!

It’s easy for kids to get swept up in the commercialism of Christmas. Instead of focusing on them this Christmas, try focusing on the true reason we celebrate. If you’re religious, throw a birthday party for Jesus. Make a cake, have fun party foods and you can even wear party hats. Do what you would normally do at a party: play games, laugh and just enjoy each other’s company.


Gifting experiences is a great solution for those who lack storage for more stuff but still want to give a gift to their kids.  There are tons of ideas on what you can give: tickets to an aquarium, movie tickets, a hot air balloon ride, a shopping trip together or a fancy dinner out are just a few. The best part about giving experiences instead of gifts is that the person will enjoy the memory of your gift forever.

Board Game Day:

Board game are a great way to connect with your family. As gaming enthusiast, we love to grab a bowl of popcorn and gather around the table. Spend hours playing your favorite games, laughing and creating memories with your family. If you’re looking for a few new board games, check out our list of over 100 games that you are guaranteed to love!


Deciding to swap gifts for memories doesn’t mean that you have to have a miserable Christmas. By volunteering, you’ll teach your kids that not all Christmases are created equally.  They’ll be able to see how lucky they are to be blessed with what they have. If you have a child who struggles with understanding how blessed they are, this idea is the perfect way to help them understand. You can volunteer at a homeless shelter, children’s hospital or a nursing home. Your entire family will never forget the experience and lessons they learned while volunteering on Christmas.

Movie Day:

Grab your favorite Christmas movies, some popcorn and a cozy blanket and spend the day laughing, crying and believing in magic again. Make it extra special by allowing everyone to choose their favorite Christmas movie and their favorite snacks. Snack on their choice while you watch their movie. During the next movie, move on to the next person’s snack of choice. Bonus points if you build a blanket fort that is big enough for the whole family. (Now, tell me the kids won’t be talking about that Christmas for years to come!)

Do What they Love:Experience Christmas like never before! Check out these 10 ideas to help you give memories instead of gifts. It'll be the best Christmas of your life!

Whether it’s playing with Legos, creating gorgeous jewelry or coloring, spend the day. doing what your kiddos love. They’ll love that you’re involved and want to join in on their hobby. Have a budding artist? Pick up enough canvases for the whole family and you can each paint a  self portrait. They’ll make the most lovely family portrait to hang on your walls!  {Grab them online! They’re much cheaper than in your local box stores!}

Spa Day:

As the mom of girls, I know just how much they enjoy a good DIY Spa Day. Start the day by creating your own masks, scrubs and balms. Then treat each other to a spa day. The best part about this is that you likely have all the ingredients you’ll need in your kitchen cabinets! It’s a cheap alternative to giving pricey beauty treatments and mom will enjoy it just as much as the kiddos!


Nothing creates memories quite like getting away. Give your kids memories instead of gifts this year by taking them to see the world. Whether you have a pre-planned vacation or just a spur-of-the-moment road trip, do your best to be present during the whole trip. Get to know your kids by asking them questions, playing “Would You Rather” or telling stories from your own childhood. The memories of a vacation are something that no gift can compare to!

Bonus Tip:

No Electronics:

It doesn’t matter what you do as long as you are PRESENT. Kids see parents with their faces buried in iPads, zoned into cell phones using bonuses from gamblizard.com and staring at TVs every day. Make Christmas special by declaring it an “Electronic Free Day!” Trust me, the kids will take note and you’ll have a great time, enjoying a simpler life, as it was before electronics ran the world.

Experience Christmas like never before! Check out these 10 ideas to help you give memories instead of gifts. It'll be the best Christmas of your life!

With so many ideas to choose from, you shouldn’t have a hard time filling the hours of Christmas day with memories instead of gifts.