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Inlaws are the types to buy everything. They didn’t respect our one good gifts or books rule at Christmas, and were over run with plastic toys. We want our kids to appreciate the people, not the presents but how do well tell them firmly yet politely no random toys? Like good, memorable keepsakes/ gifts or books, but there’s no need for plastic toys. I know they won’t respect our wishes but I’m hoping to minimize


Posted anonymously, 6th February 2019


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  • Create a donate to a cause page and ask them donate to that instead as part of the invitation. It could involve World Vision or The Smith Family or Make a Wish etc.


  • I’ve heard that some people have $5 or $10 birthdays. Each guest puts either $5 or $10 in the birthday card envelope and then the recipient can buy or put the money towards what they need.


  • Just say it, quite bluntly: we don’t have a lot of room, and we’d like our kids to value what you give them, so make it simple and special.


  • It is a grandparents right to buy what they want for their grand-children.
    BUT if a request like ” Presence is present enough!” and they do not conform explain that it was a request. (I know some plastic toys are just junk and can be hazards.) After they have left and you really don’t want the toys re-girt them to charity. Depends on the age of the kids you could explain to them that some kids have nothing and would they like to donate the toy, teaching them kindness.


  • Enjoy it! My parents said oh your kids have everything and buy them nothing. Not even a bakery treat. And no they don’t have everything, just more than they did as kids. Of course.
    Grandparents are for spoiling, be grateful and feel lucky. I’m in tears a lot watching my kids go shopping and in outings during their visits and get snapped at. It’s distressing.


  • Could you maybe ask for something specific that you need to help save costs? Like swimming lessons or clothing for upcoming season?


  • If they dont listen I’m not sure what else you can say but do what you think is best


  • Have you considered asking for either cash or physical donations to a charity for children less fortunate. Explain to grandparents you want to teach the concept of giving and appreciating what you have. Good luck!!


  • As a nan myself, I have to say we can be prone to spoiling our grandkids. I would send out invites and specify in them what you’re hoping to get as presents and your reasons for wanting it that way. Good luck


  • I’d probably just say to them that the child got so much for Christmas so doesn’t need a lot and to perhaps put some money towards a bigger toy?


  • Could you think of something really useful for your little one and ask people to all put together towards it so it’s like one main gift from everyone? That way it’s less for you to have in your home and it’s also something significant. Like, a first bike or a nice play kitchen? A cubby house? People will still feel like they’ve bought something nice then too. Other than that just word it on your invites that you have a wishing well instead for people to put money in to be saved for the future


  • I would just put on the invites your presence is present enough for us !


  • You can either say that your child due to Christmas has too many plastic toys. As the first birthday is special could a service be given like taking the child to somewhere special, may be a money box with a small coin in it. Donation in the child’s name or if you have a charity may be pet food for a pet shelter or a have a donation box with receipts if needed for tax purposes.


  • Tell them again your views on the plastic crappy toys and ask them to instead invest that money into an account for your children for their futures instead of a plastic gift until such time that the kids are older and their gifts could be less materialistic things.

    Alternatively ask them for things like zoo passes etc that are more about the experience, or get them to give the gift of swimming lessons or a sport/musical instrument lesson.

    If all the asking and alternatives don’t work, simply return the gift back to them and simply say thank you but your children have no need for this toy. It might ruffle their feathers a bit but eventually they will see it is how you want to bring up your children and will hopefully come to respect and appreciate it. – Good luck


  • People feel.guilty about not giving gifts. Maybe ask for donations to a charity.


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