My Favorite Moment of Christmas

Each year, my children choose a name from a hat and buy a gift for one sibling. We choose the name on the first Sunday of Advent and they plan the gifts, whispering and scheming and wrapping. Opening Secret Santa gifts is their favorite part of Christmas morning, no matter what else is under the tree, bikes or skis or huge marble run sets, somehow the package of markers from your big sister is the best gift you get. I think that the children know each other so well and they choose really thoughtfully, so the gifts are a huge hit, and usually a surprise.

This year, my 9 year old boy made three Lego mini-figures for his 6 year old brother. He made them up out of his collection and gave them “for keeps.” He sorted and created, and the little brother knew right away which favorite characters his brother had made for him (Kai’s father from Ninjago — these are figures that are not in the Lego catalog!). It was the little boy equivalent of a hand knit scarf, and a wonderful brother moment. Also, for this boy, it was a huge act of generosity to give up some of his own toys rather than buy something new. He had even saved an old minifigure package so that the toys were boxed like new. It really warms a mama’s heart to see her kids relating to each other this way, and taking so much pride in both giving and receiving these small, thoughtful gifts.

Merry Christmas!

  • Katrina

    Very sweet, thank you for sharing! Merry Christmas everyone!

  • http://www.buildingcathedrals.com/ Kellie

    This is also our favorite part of Christmas morning gift opening! Love seeing my children thoughtfully select a gift for their sibling. Love seeing the sibling open the gift. These are the moments that make parenting so fun. Thanks for sharing.

  • Bethany

    I love the idea of this tradition and hope to add something like it down the road. Do you all help to fund the gifts or do the kids use their own money? I could definitely see some of my kids being more miserly than others!! ;)

    • Mary Alice

      I used to be more into having the children save up for the gift, but this year I just funded the gifts, and all were roughly under $20. One child who was giving a small, inexpenisive but well chosen gift (lip gloss) added a fair trade chocolate bar, which made the thing more substantial. Our oldest is both wealthiest (lawn mowing) and most generous, so you do sort of hit the jackpot if he does your gift!


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