Gifting memories, not just stuff

Gifting memories, not just stuff

Marisca explores alternative types of Christmas gifts that last

I have memories of getting two gifts growing up. For my sixth birthday my parents got me my first bike. It was white with pink hearts and I’ll never forget that moment of getting my first real bike and learning how to ride it with my dad.

I also remember my parents giving my sister and I the most beautiful dollhouse for Christmas one year. They spent many evenings building this gift.

It was incredibly detailed with tiny cedar shingles, a bay window and all the walls were even covered in wallpaper. It was amazing and my sister and I spent many hours playing with. In fact, my mom kept it and I hope one day that my daughters can play with it.

All of our birthdays and Christmases growing up were always joyful celebrations and full of gifts. Our Christmas trees (and our grandparents’ Christmas trees) were always surrounded by presents. There was never a lack of gifts to go around.

However, at my age now I can only remember two distinct gifts from my childhood. That’s it … two. Sorry, mom and dad.

It wasn’t that they didn’t give me stuff, they did. And I’m sure they put a lot of thought into it (or at least my mom did, my dad was always equally surprised when we opened our presents.) But for whatever reason, none of it seems to stick in my mind.

Last week’s The Sticky Files: It’s OK not to be OK

This is why I struggle with what to get my children for Christmas. I want to give them meaningful gifts they will remember. But they are so young, they likely won’t at this age.

At one point are we giving gifts or just giving stuff? Like material things. I want to make memories.

Or am I just thinking too much into it? It is so fun to open presents and watch our children rip open gifts. The joy on their faces, even if it only lasts a little while, is so worth it.

But their toy boxes (yes, plural) are overflowing. The “it” toy that we searched all over for and bought our daughter last year is already broken and probably collecting dust somewhere. While she was so excited for it last year, she has completely forgotten about it already. We gave her a moment of joy, and that was amazing but now this toy will likely sit in a landfill for a hundred years.

Read more from The Sticky Files:

Is volunteerism waning in rural B.C.?

Turning the lights off on daylight savings time

This year, my husband and I have decided to buy each of our girls one toy, one book and a pair of fun pjs. I’m also hoping to encourage relatives to get the girls memories instead of toys.

My daughter would love to get a gift certificate for her first manicure and go on a date with one of her aunts. She would also love someone to take her to the movies or even just out for lunch.

Making memories is way more important and way more special than a gift. It can also be more environmentally friendly and maybe even more economic. A promise of a spring time picnic, a day of horseback riding or an afternoon of tobogganing with hot chocolate are all great gift ideas.

I’ve also heard of people buying subscriptions as gifts. This is a great idea, there are fantastic kid magazines out now and sticker clubs and all kinds of different types of memberships.

Children love getting mail, it could be the gift that keeps on giving. Let’s not go into debt or fill our landfills this season, instead let’s make memories.


@MariscaDekkema
marisca.bakker@interior-news.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic January 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Employers might be able to require COVID-19 vaccination from employees: B.C. lawyer

‘An employer must make the case’ using expert science, explains lawyer David Mardiros

Houston physician Dr. Stefanie Steel receives her first dose of the Pfizer vaccine Jan. 19 from RN nurse manager Cindy Cockle. (Northern Health photo)
COVID-19 vaccinations get underway in Smithers

First doses are being administered to long-term care residents and priority health care staff

The COVID-19 outbreak at the two Coastal GasLink workforce lodges has officially been declared over. (Lakes District News file photo)
COVID-19 outbreak at Coastal GasLink worksites declared over

In total, 56 cases were associated with the outbreak in the Burns Lake and Nechako LHAs

Fentanyl was among the drugs seized by New Hazelton RCMP in a big bust in early January. (File photo)
New Hazelton RCMP arrest five, seize drugs and large amount of cash

Police find suspected heroin, fentanyl and crystal meth during early January drug bust

Smithers Local Health area reported 32 new cases of COVID-19 for the second week of January. (BC CDC graphic)
Weekly new cases of COVID-19 rise to 32 in Smithers LHA Jan. 10 – 16

Northern Health reports 35 new cases for 501 active, 44 hospitalized, 17 in critical care Wednesday

Terrance Josephson of the Princeton Posse, at left, and Tyson Conroy of the Summerland Steam clash during a Junior B hockey game at the Summerland Arena in the early spring of 2020. (John Arendt - Summerland Review)
QUIZ: How much do you know about hockey?

Test your knowledge of Canada’s national winter sport

A 75-year-old aircraft has been languishing in a parking lot on the campus of the University of the Fraser Valley, but will soon be moved to the B.C. Aviation Museum. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
Vintage military aircraft moving from Chilliwack to new home at B.C. Aviation Museum

The challenging move to Vancouver Island will be documented by Discovery Channel film crews

A video posted to social media by Chilliwack resident Rob Iezzi shows a teenager getting kicked in the face after being approached by three suspects on Friday, Jan. 22, 2021. (YouTube/Rob i)
VIDEO: Security cameras capture ‘just one more assault’ near B.C. high school

Third high-school related assault captured by Chilliwack resident’s cameras since beginning of 2021

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

FILE - In this Feb. 14, 2017, file photo, Oklahoma State Rep. Justin Humphrey prepares to speak at the State Capitol in Oklahoma City. A mythical, ape-like creature that has captured the imagination of adventurers for decades has now become the target of Rep. Justin Humphrey. Humphrey, a Republican House member has introduced a bill that would create a Bigfoot hunting season, He says issuing a state hunting license and tag could help boost tourism. (Steve Gooch/The Oklahoman via AP, File)
Oklahoma lawmaker proposes ‘Bigfoot’ hunting season

A Republican House member has introduced a bill that would create a Bigfoot hunting season

Economic Development and Official Languages Minister Melanie Joly responds to a question in the House of Commons Monday November 23, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Federal minister touts need for new B.C. economic development agency

Last December’s federal economic update promised a stimulus package of about $100 billion this year

FILE - In this Nov. 20, 2017, file photo, Larry King attends the 45th International Emmy Awards at the New York Hilton, in New York. Former CNN talk show host King has been hospitalized with COVID-19 for more than a week, the news channel reported Saturday, Jan. 2, 2021. CNN reported the 87-year-old King contracted the coronavirus and was undergoing treatment at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. (Photo by Andy Kropa/Invision/AP, File)
Larry King, broadcasting giant for half-century, dies at 87

King conducted an estimated 50,000 on-air interviews

BC Coroners Service is currently investigating a death at Canoe Cove Marina and Boatyard in North Saanich. (Black Press Media File)
Drowning death in North Saanich likely B.C.’s first in for 2021

Investigation into suspected drowning Monday night continues

Kimberly Proctor, 18, was murdered in 2010. Her family has spent many of the years since pushing for a law in her honour, that they say would help to prevent similar tragedies. (Courtesy of Jo-Anne Landolt)
Proposed law honouring murdered B.C. teen at a standstill, lacks government support

Ministry of Mental Health and Addictions has concerns with involuntary detainment portion of act

Most Read