If you're a parent or know someone who is, then you might be very well acquainted with the "less is more" philosophy when it comes to children's relationship with toys.
In many cases, kids seem to adopt the persona that there can never be enough toys.
They want them in different colors. They want different variants of them. They'll collect them, throw them on the floor, and horde them around the house like some kind of deranged child toy dragon. They'll only care for its existence at the threat of its loss or threatened donation/trashing if the child in question can't be responsible enough to clean up after themselves.
There's been a lot of discussion on the dangers of over-stimulation and exposing children to the mentality of hoarding toys from a young age: and you may have noticed that your kids will often go through different "cycles" of play with their toys. They might be into some of them for a while, but then others at a later date, which is why there are a lot of parents who espouse toy "cycling" or "rotation" strategies.
One TikToker has gone viral for taking this concept a bit further and applying it to holiday gifts but with a twist. Elizabeth (@elizabethacting)
Elizabeth begins her video by stating: "Doing something super controversial with my kid's birthday and Christmas presents this year. Half of me is like you're a terrible person you are crossing a line. And the other half is like you are a literal genius. So throughout the last year my husband and I were trying something new where were kind of buy things on sale or get things at a garage sale and keep them downstairs in the basement in a bin for gifting at birthdays or Christmas."
She said that her and her significant other have been enjoying this line of work when it comes to gift-saving/giving: "We kind of just have this — it's great. I went downstairs today and I opened this bin and I'm like oh my gosh, shopping for my daughter's birthday in my bin in the basement which by girl math it's free, right?"
Elizabeth says that after throwing a birthday party for her daughter she was left with an inundation of gifts from her friends and that after unwrapping the presents and thanking everyone who came for their kindness, she put most of the new presents away, as there were just too many things for her to play with at once.
This is where her Christmas conundrum begins: "The problem is, last year my daughter had a birthday party and she had like 10 kids there she got gifts from all those kids, she got gifts from us. She got gifts from relatives. She got gifts from my friends. She got a lot. So she opened up all her gifts and we said oh okay thank you Chloe thank you, blah, blah, blah, we wrote thank you cards, and then I took, maybe half of those gifts and put them downstairs in a bin to save because it was way too much."
Elizabeth continued: "The gifts wouldn't even fit anywhere upstairs and we couldn't possibly play with them all. It was overwhelming it was too much so I put them in the bin. But I put them in the same bin of the gifts that we've been collecting throughout the year and now I'm wrapping up her birthday presents...I'm going through the bin and I'm like did...did we buy her this puzzle? Or did her friend Chloe buy her the puzzle?"
The issue is that "I don't remember. I don't remember. Especially because my husband and I both add to the bin so he could have bought this I could have bought we could have gotten this at a garage, I don't know. So I'm gonna wrap up this gift and put from Mom and Dad and it might not be from us?"
She capped off her video by asking her followers what they thought of the ethics of possibly re-gifting her kids' birthday presents from her friends, "Does this make me a terrible person or is this such a genius gifting hack for kids who just get way too much...my kids are spoiled they get everything they have way too many gifts, I'm trying to do less this year while still making it a magical Christmas, it's a very fine line...and I'm not sure how I feel about this."
A number of commenters said that due to Elizabeth's daughter's age (several referenced the fact that she was three years old) that she probably isn't going to remember the gifts she's getting anyway. One remarked: "I think if she hasn’t asked where anything is then she doesn’t remember"
While another said: "10/10, if they're young enough to not have explicit memory of getting it, this is for sure genius"
Someone else wrote: "She won’t remember either so it’s a win win"
"This is fine, she’s three! But this is probably the last year for it. She’ll remember after 4ish," another TikToker assured her.
But there were other folks who weren't so sure that Elizabeth's daughter would be oblivious to the "new" Christmas gifts she received.
"She WILL be telling her therapist that mommy took her birthday presents away and gave them to her for Christmas when she’s older.:
Another replied: "3 year olds have a better memory than you think. she probably can't pull it out and ask for it, but she'll recognize them when she opens them again."
What do you think? Do you think you would've remembered when you were three years old? Do you think your parents love you less if they don't spend money for spend a certain amount of money for you on Christmas?