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Do your older children typically know what their Christmas gifts are beforehand?

Discussion in 'Community Board' started by maslex, Nov 24, 2012.

  1. aprilgail2

    aprilgail2 Guest

    For the past couple years my daughter (12) has known some of what she was getting. I wouldn't buy her Uggs without her picking out the style she liked and trying them on last year and she had to try on the north face jacket too. The ipad WAS a surprise though because I kept telling her she was not getting that everytime she asked for one! So some things are a surprise and others are not. She has an amazon wish list for family and friends that want to buy her gifts.
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  3. Darcy03231

    Darcy03231 DIS Veteran

    Nov 1, 2006
    My kids are 19, 21, 24 and 28. Since we do a big family vacation in lieu of extravagant Christmas presents they do know what their big gift is each year, they just don't know where wer're going until Christmas Day. The little stuff is mostly a surprise.
  4. Patience

    Patience DIS Veteran

    Jul 7, 2011
    My 18 year old lets me know what she wants and I usually buy most of it but not when she's present. I also buy a few surprises. The LL Bean boots and the Michael Kors watch she is getting were all picked out by her and she also picked out a pink life proof case for her iPhone. She pointed out a necklace she liked when we were out shopping and I went back later and bought it for her. The rest of her presents will be surprises. I am giving her a gift certificate to have her teeth professionally whitened and she has no idea about it. I know she will love it.
  5. bethbuchall

    bethbuchall <font color=deeppink>Had to make sure she was in D

    Jul 10, 2003
    My oldest is 21, and I've needed some pretty specific ideas from him for a couple of years. This is the first year, though, that both he and my daughter (19) know exactly what they are getting. In fact, my daughter already has hers, and it won't even be under the tree. It makes me a little sad, but it was a deal that we couldn't pass up. My youngest is 13. He'll give me a list but won't know what he's getting until Christmas. I'll try to come up with some little surprises for the older two, but they know that their choices are at least 95% of their Christmas presents and are ok with that.

    We don't put any of the presents under the tree until Santa comes late on Christmas Eve.
  6. rszdtrvl

    rszdtrvl DIS Veteran

    Jan 10, 2008
    DS (soon to be 16) pretty much knows what most of his gifts will be, for both birthday and Christmas (bday is in Dec. also).

    I took him shopping last weekend at Ross and told him to pick out some stuff. He is pretty picky when it comes to clothes, and I wanted to make sure he would wear them.

    Not only did we have some fun mother/son time, but he also got some much needed retail therapy. He now has to wait to get them, and they were split up between birthday and Christmas.

    His big gift is always given to him on his birthday instead of Christmas. This year it is an Ipad. He suspects he is getting one, but does not know for sure. I ordered it refurbished from Apple.com a few weeks ago. He will be thrilled!

    I am just about done shopping for him. Stocking stuffers and a couple smaller items (gift cards) and I will be totally done.

    Driving lessons will be done in the summer, unless he works at camp. He is not super eager to start driving yet. But I know as soon as he starts lessons he will be.
  7. DawnM

    DawnM Dawn

    Oct 4, 2005
    yes, they know. I told them I could surprise them, but they opted to pick their own games, etc....:lmao:
  8. married2mm

    married2mm DIS Veteran

    May 15, 2011
    my kids all know what they're getting for christmas, however they're still excited,which is nice. 25,19,15.

    we used to have lists, but like pp's kids know themselves where best deals are etc. so generally they've sought games,clothes etc. out and we order/ pay.

    we have little surprises for stockings, eg candy,toiletries but nothing expensive as they're simply gifts for the sake of it, rather than what they really want.

    case in point-dd found a bag in ds room,last week, which contained previous years unused christmas gifts. :goodvibes
  9. minkydog

    minkydog DIS Cast Member

    Dec 8, 2004
    When my older kids were in their teens I used to ask them for a list. I'd take DD19 shopping at the mall for clothes--she would try on stuff and rate it for me; next day, I'd return to the mall and buy the things that i liked, knowing that she would also like them.

    Now that they are 19 & 26, they really don't want me picking out their clothes and stuff. And their needs are so different, it really is hard to buy for them. So we give each one a sizable check, to be used as they see fit. DS26 is moving into a new house in December and he will need lots of things. DD19 starts her culinary classes in January and she will have to buy her knife set ($450~!) so that's probably where her money will go.

    Christian is the easiest to buy for. He doesn't "get" Christmas. All he's interested in is the cookies and cupcakes, the crunchy wrapping paper, and the tree lights. Otherwise, he could care less. So we save a LOT of money on him at Christmas! (Lest anyone think I am too cold-hearted, we do buy him a couple of toys, some snacks for school, warm clothes and PJs.)

    ETA: I do like to give "experiences" rather than objects. Since my young adults are not established well yet(they don't get much vacation time, nor do they have much expendable cash), I like to invite them to do things with us. Last year it was a Caribbean cruise. This year it was a one night trip to a special light show. So, it's not always a terribly expensive thing. But it makes them feel like they're still included (which, of course, they are!)
  10. DISshopkeeper

    DISshopkeeper <font color=green>Had 3 topplings over the years<b

    Jul 16, 2003
    My "kids" 26 and 24 have been providing me "lists" for years, in e-mail, with links. :lmao::lmao::lmao:

    That's the way I like it! I use the list as a jumping off point, and ALWAYS get some surprises. They actually told me I was good at the surprises. :banana:
  11. marcyinPA

    marcyinPA <font color=blue>I'll never forget the strong, pun

    Apr 2, 2001
    Well, we thought we were going to get DS17 a laptop, and I mentioned it to him. In the meantime, we have kind of decided against it for now. Ooops. But, instead, I think we are getting iPhones for the family, and that is something he has been wanting for a LONG LONG time. Apparently, he is the only kid in HS with a "dumb" phone. :rolleyes:

    Neither of my kids know about the iPhones, and we won't tell them. I did pick up a sweater that my DS17 wanted, and a sweatshirt that the 13 year old has been asking for. They don't know about them, but they technically chose them.

    DS17 also asked me to get him gift cards to Dunkin Donuts, Subway, and the movies. He doesn't have a job yet, and he needs a way to finance his social life- so these are good ones for him. He will be very happy with all three!!

    I think we are going to get Broadway tix too- and I'm not sure how we will get around not telling the older one. He is heavily involved in school theatre, and weekend practices for the spring musical start in January. He can't miss. I guess I can email the director to see which weekend might be good for us to take our kids to NYC.
  12. hallie

    hallie Mouseketeer

    Feb 25, 2002
    Nope! I have them make lists for ideas, but they don't know what they'll get or expect everything on the list.
  13. aprilgail2

    aprilgail2 Guest

    I am doing something like that this year for my daughter- one of her gifts is a wallet stuffed with gift cards from aeropostal, american eagle, and a bunch of other stores and a few for restaurants and the movies so she can go out shopping and to eat with friends.
  14. ebtbmom

    ebtbmom DIS Veteran

    Jun 16, 2009
    DS gives me a list and I pick from that, though I throw in a few surprises too.

    As he's gotten older and his gifts have gotten fewer in number due to higher cost I've started hiding them around the house to drag out present time a bit. I'll write clues, brain teasers, puzzles, to lead him to where his gifts are hidden. He enjoys It a lot, this year I'm toying with the idea of extending it to relatives houses too, I have a cousin that likes the idea!
  15. ilovejack02

    ilovejack02 <font color=peach>what do you all think?<br><font

    Aug 8, 2006
    My oldest is 24 , he never knows what he is getting, gives me some ideas I pick from there. I say never , but he should know by now that he will always get a new pair of tennis shoes and a two pairs of jeans lol. This year Im switching it up though, he getting two pair of shoes ; ) ... found a great sale. He isn't picky , I just know what brand to stick with . I am not sure what the big gift will be, I was thinking a mattress , as he lives on his own and he mentioned his is in bad shape .. ( hand me down from his bio mom )

    My younger child is still a Santa fan so he is always surprised .
  16. MamaLema

    MamaLema DIS Veteran

    May 17, 2004
    DS 16 and DS 14 know exactly what they are getting. DS 9 is getting surprised.

    Last year, DS 16 got a guitar. He wanted a specific brand and model and there is no way I could of gone to pick out a guitar for him.

    It gets harder as they get older. For those whose kids don't know, I don't know how you do it.
  17. Gumbo4x4

    Gumbo4x4 Note to the ladies who forgot to

    Jan 19, 2012
    My sister wanders through the store with the cart & her boys toss stuff in until they reach their budget. Seems weird to me. They're young enough to still "want" way more than they're getting, so it would seem my sister could at least get a list from each and then pick & choose from the list so it's still a LITTLE bit of a surprise. I know my parents still surprised me when I was 15 (shotgun, still have it :)).
  18. luvmy3

    luvmy3 <font color=green>When I drink I find its easier t

    Feb 24, 2008
    My 2 older kids know what their big gift is going to be. My dd wanted a specific ski jacket and pants and needed to try them on. I did get her some other ski gear but since the coat and pants took up over half of her Christmas budget there won't be alot under the tree for her. I do like to get some surprises too, so at least she'll have things to open that she doesn't know about.

    My ds wanted an Ipod touch and was going to buy it himself but he asked me if I could just get it for him for Christmas and I told him yes. He also asked for a specific Lego set so I'll get him that too. Just like my dd, he'll have some things to open that he doesn't know about.

    My youngest is in the still might believe stage. I'm pretty sure he knows the truth but hasn't said anything so this year I'll still be doing Santa for him so he won't know what he's getting.
  19. Mickey'snewestfan

    Mickey'snewestfan DIS Veteran

    Apr 26, 2005
    My kid's big gift for the past few years has been the same: snowboard rental, snowboard pass, snowboard club from his school (they run a bus up to the hill once a week). He's known since the end of last year that this is what he's getting.

    I consider this a "quasi" Christmas present. I tell him it's a gift, in part because I want him to realize how lucky he is, and in part because his sports and extracurriculars are part of the reason the Christmas budget is smaller than some of his friends (sort, of, depends if you include the snowboarding in the budget"). But to be honest, if we lived in New Zealand or somewhere else where Christmas comes in the summer, he'd still get to snowboard and I'd tell him his "big" gift was summer camp.

    On Christmas morning he'll still get a nice stocking and some gifts under the tree. I've tried my best to spoil him, but so far I've failed.
  20. Fire14

    Fire14 Spartan Living in land of Buckeyes.

    Dec 19, 2001
    I email my dad, dh my xmas idea list they can pick off list or go out and find me something.
    My dad usually tries to get me something small he found while out shopping.
    My mother always used to gripe that all I wanted was gift cards. One year I got a gift box of underwear including a black pr, I never wear black underwear.

    My Dh has come up with some crazy stuff over the years. I wish he'd learn to bring our wrapping paper to neighbor whom he buys my scrapbook stuff from, I've busted him 4 times on wrapping paper alone. Not hard when you recognize paper as same stuff under neighbor's tree, or a print that would never make it into your home.
  21. mommasita

    mommasita DIS VETERAN Moderator

    Aug 3, 2004
    I do this for my daughter also. LOVE IT. Keeps them entertained with their friends.

    For my son it is mainly restaurants, as he loves to do this at lunch time. And I don't fork it out daily.

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