Minimalist Christmas Pt.2

The first mindset to a minimalist Christmas is you don’t need more stuff. 

The way my family pays for our Christmas presents, stocking stuffers, presents for others, days out, and food for Christmas is we save our coins all year long! And we cannot spend more than we saved.

We give each other 3 presents. Gold, Frankincense, and Mir. Something you REALLY WANT, something you need, and something homemade. I love this approach because to be honest, stuff is so temporary. And we, as humans, get so caught up with our Christmas lists and circling everything we can in store catalogs. That’s totally fine, it’s okay to get caught up in the fun of getting stuff. But take it down a few notches. Do you really need that $50 knick knack that you didn’t know you needed it until you saw it printed in the catalog? No. You really don’t.

Do your kids need hundreds of dollars worth of crap for them to love you? No, they don’t. Z and I are proof of that. We see our parents sacrifices, we see their struggles, we’ve been next to them through all of it. We have a roof over our heads and we have jobs. We don’t go to bed hungry anymore. WE HAVE HEAT! I don’t know if you read part one…but I will NEVER take heat for granted.

So pull in those crazy reigns and learn to appreciate the crap you already have. Teach your kids to be grateful for that roof, the clothes, the food, the heat. Teach them to be appreciative for what presents they do get under the tree. And get rid of that attitude that we deserve those things in the pretty wrapped boxes. We don’t. For the most part…we are so over saturated with crap in this country. We don’t need more.

Heck, this year I just really want/need some socks! I still use and have every single I got from my parents the last two years, because they know what I love and they know what I need. What a great mindset to have going into this consumer holiday!

Jesus is the reason for the season.

Blessings on Blessings PT.1

I know I am not alone when it comes to the rush of excitement I get when I receive this in the mail. Every single year I look forward to what awesome stuff I can get for a family who genuinely needs it. After seeing first hand what World Vision and Compassion do in third world country’s –img_1298 I make it a point to carefully and mindfully browse this catalog. Think about how you can stretch your money to make the most life lasting impact on the lives of these people.

World Vision, Compassion, Operation Christmas Child, Angel Tree changes lives! So don’t scoff at the thought of sending money to an organization that won’t use it. Or better yet, get rid of the thought that, “my five bucks won’t make a difference so I won’t waste my time…NO! It’s the dollars donated by multiple people that add up to a life changing impact! It gives these organizations the ability to give food, wells, animals, clothing, school supplies, etc.

If I could afford it I would give money to every single thing in this catalog because my heart cry’s for the thousands of kids I saw in Uganda and on the Mexican border. Kids that will never see an obscene amount of toys under the tree on Christmas morning, or a huge Christmas feast. These kids are in survival mode, they are desperate, they are hungry, and they need to understand that there are people who care for them, and love them.

Growing up we didn’t have a lot of money at all. During the winter months we would all live in one room, with heavy tattered quilts covering the doorway, and a small kerosene heater in the middle of the room to stay warm. We couldn’t afford heat. We could barely afford food. My parents sacrificed just to get enough fuel to put in that kerosene heater. They made sure my brother and I had enough blankets so we could stay warm at night. We would wake up and be able to see our breath in the room it was so freezing. But we were blessed compared to a lot of families across the world. Even families in our own neighborhood.

The past two years have been decent for our family. We still pinch penny’s but we have heat. Tears are streaming down my face right now, I’m praising the Lord at the top of my lungs so grateful we can afford heat! I’m also grateful I can give back. A lot of people helped my family out over the years, and I just want to be able to give back in some way. Whether that’s buying coats for families in my town, or donating money to organizations like World Vision that will impact lives in third world countries, I just want to give back!

So please join me, join me in my steps to keeping a minimalist Christmas so I can bless other’s the way we were blessed for so many years.