One gift I always give my children is a new book. It counts as one of their presents, so that leaves a toy or other wanted item for their second gift. The other thing we do is clean through closets and toy chests in November to gather up toys that are in good shape, but maybe not played with as much any more, that they can donate to the women's and children's shelter in our area. Over the years I have watched as my kids even let go of toys they still loved all because they knew some other kid had nothing.
We also give the gift of food. Baked items for neighbors is a fun way to pass on some Christmas cheer as well as reconnect with people that we don't see often despite living so close.
Over the next few weeks I will share with you some of the gifts we give and how I stay on a tight budget for the holidays. Because really this season is more about family and together time, not retail and acquiring more stuff.