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15th Sep 2023

Parents weigh in on whether babies under one should get Christmas gifts

Jody Coffey

A baby’s first Christmas is so special, but do you need splash out for it?

With Christmas Day in just a matter of months, now is probably the best time to start thinking about presents and avoiding seasonal prices.

And if it’s your baby’s first Christmas, it’s understandable that you may want to fill the underside of the tree with gifts galore from Santa.

However, should you?

One parent found themselves in a bit of a bind as they found it inappropriate to have a bounty of gifts for her five-month-old son over Christmas. On the flip side, their husband was open to letting people shower their baby with presents, despite having ‘no clue what’s going on.’

Seeking advice from Reddit users, the worried parent wanted to get out in front of ‘people, grandparents in particular, who, they felt, were ‘about to go overboard’ with their gifting.

“I would rather wait until he’s old enough to actually open a couple of things before allowing presents for him (and even then, I think too many gifts is overwhelming for a young child).

“At the very least, I think we should restrict the number of gifts (one special gift from each side of the family, or something like that). I mean, at this point what does it matter? He has no clue what’s going on! I feel like the gifts aren’t really for the kid at this point.”

Another worry for the parent was storage and finding space to put these gifts as their baby’s age meant he wouldn’t be playing with or using them anytime soon.

Well, if you find yourself in a similar position, some of the replies to the post are absolutely genius and do not hurt anyone’s feelings around the holidays.

One user suggested asking for what you think will actually be put to good use.

“We asked for some nice, bigger ticket things like a water table and activity table. She was 6 months last Christmas and I put some things on her list for when she was older that I was willing to hang on to. A lot of people also ask for things to do rather than toys like tickets to a kids museum or something.”

Another suggestion is to ask anyone you know who will be buying for your little one to contribute to their education fund as a gift.

One parent says in-laws can be a trickier conversation, so they recommended an ‘idea list.’

“I’m thinking we’ll put together an email reminding them we already have a ton of X,Y,Z and are running out of space for more, then maybe including a short “idea list”, heavily weighted to “experience” gifts (e.g. music class) but also including a few things we don’t have yet (e.g. slippers, art supplies).”

Another parent, who was determined to see their little one develop a love of reading, says slipping in these desires as gifts is always helpful.

“We told both sides that we really want to encourage Nick to love reading like we both do and that the best present they could get him would be either their favorite children’s book(s) OR books that they have fond memories of reading with us as children. It was perfect, they got give him a gift that he still loves 2 years later and we got a great addition to his little library.”

However, sometimes these pleas may fall on deaf ears, purely out of love for their new family member. In this case, if you have a lot of grandparents, aunties, neighbours, etc., simply asking them to store some of their new toys there would be useful for when you visit, as you won’t have to lug toys with you every time.

What are your thoughts on Christmas gifts for babies under the age of one? Is it wasteful? Or is it just getting into the Christmas spirit?

We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments.