No Presents!

I’m back! Well, sort of. We still have a few great guest entries lined up for the next few weeks, but I might be making an appearance here or there before coming back every Sunday starting at the end of the month. Stay tuned!


The holidays are upon us once again, and with the impending arrival of Christmas, I am starting to get the usual question from family and friends: what does Dylan want for Christmas? The answer: not very much at all.

As you might recall from my post about Dylan’s obsession with balloons, all he wanted for Christmas last year were his beloved “bombas.” This year, he has added a new item to his list: candy canes.

If you ask him whether he wants any other toy or present, you will be greeted with a very emphatic and loud: “I don’t want presents! Only “bombas” and candy canes!”

I think Santa Claus might be able to pull that off this year. But how do I answer people’s questions about what to get him? I don’t want to end up with three pounds of candy canes in the house!

Of course, I can think of a few things Dylan might enjoy getting. A pack of markers and a pad of paper will go a long way with the boy. Books are always good. So are movies. But that doesn’t even begin to cover the amount of people who want to give him presents, and let’s be honest, as much as everyone appreciates the value of a savings bond or adding to a college fund, people want to give something fun and tangible, something that will elicit a shriek of joy when the boy tears open the wrapping paper.

Or will it?

Dylan is so adamantly anti-present at the moment that I shudder to think how he is going to react when he sees the Christmas tree full of presents with his name on them, our family members excitedly awaiting his reaction. Last year, he opened two presents and threw a fit when we tried to get him to open the other ones. It was the same story for his birthday. It seems that two presents at a time is his limit. Give him any more and he is likely to refuse to open it or throw it on the ground, much to Mami and Daddy’s embarrassment.

The truth of the matter is, I kind of agree with him on this one. Dylan is just now starting to play with some toys, but for the most part he prefers to pretend to cook on an imaginary skillet than to actually use his play kitchen, or have a pretend swordfight rather than looking around for his Light Sabers. He is just not so much into toys. So why fill the house with more stuff that he will most likely not even use? But how do you explain this to the people who love him so much, who don’t get to see him as often as they would like, and who just want to give him something that will (hopefully) make him happy?

I must confess, though, I am as guilty as the next person. My in-laws are trying to discourage present-giving this year, but I cannot bring myself not to buy something for my nephews, however small. Every time I go to the store, I have to stop myself from buying something for Dylan that I think he might maybe enjoy. I already have to physically tear myself away from all these adorable baby girl items lest I buy them all for my future niece, and she’s not due to be born until April!  

I’m not sure what the solution is here, but thankfully, the economy is helping us out a bit in this matter, as most people are downsizing significantly or coming up with creative alternatives to material possessions. For example, one of our family members offered to take Dylan out for a special day in lieu of giving him a present. We think this is fantastic! After all, isn’t that what Christmas is all about, spending time with loved ones?

If any of you have other ideas as to how to share the holiday love without the presents, please share. We’d love to hear them!


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  • Clothing. That's always my go to because Amelia grows so fast and I'm constantly running out of clothing. He is still so young that he will enjoy his 2 toys and you get to enjoy the clothing.

  • In reply to abelaval:

    I agree with Ana. Explain that he doesn't play with toys. My oldest (he's 21 now) is on the autism spectrum and didn't play with toys at all. I would buy him stuff and my parents did too, and he got overwhelmed and didn't touch a thing. He would go into his room and empty his toy box and climb in. I could have saved myself a lot of grief and money had I just accepted that he wasn't into toys. I guess I wanted him to have the Christmases I enjoyed as a kid.
    Now, I have two younger boys who want everything under the sun.
    Have a Merry Christmas.

  • In reply to minniemama68:

    Thanks, Sheri. I've been mentioning he doesn't really play with toys, so I'm hoping people will take the hint! ;-) I know what you mean about wanting your child to have the Christmases you enjoyed as a kid. I want the same thing, the tree loaded with presents...but I'm trying to be realistic. Plus, I have to ride this wave as long as it lasts. Next year he will most likely ask for every toy in sight!

  • In reply to abelaval:

    Welcome back, Khadine! I love the idea of having a day of activities with the little ones. Maybe, as a present, Titi Lisa and Uncle Adam can take the kids to the movies instead of getting them "just another gift". Also, like Ana, a great present is always a clothing item! Great article!

  • In reply to NinaGoyco:

    Thanks, Nina! Hope Lisa & Adam like the idea!

  • In reply to NinaGoyco:

    El mejor regalo para Dylan seria llevarlo al Reino Magico en esta Navidad. Estarias regalandole alegria, felicidad y el compartir con sus seres queridos; con ustedes, sus padres, y con sus tios y abuelos queridos.

  • In reply to Valmir:

    Jajajaja, SABIA que eso era lo que ibas a escribir! ;-)

  • In reply to abelaval:

    That's true, clothing is always useful! And he DOES need a new Star Wars t-shirt. Good idea! Thanks, Ana!

  • Welcome back. Infelizmente nosotros (los abuelos y tios de PR)no podemos dar de nuestro tiempo a Dylan pues El no va a estar con nosotros en estas navidades, aSI que lo unico que podemos hacer es mandarle algun juguete o ropa de regalo. Hubiesemos adorado compartir con Uds.

  • In reply to Valmir:

    Yo lo se, y nosotros con ustedes! Se que no lo pueden consentir durante el ano, asi que la unica manera es a traves de regalos y el tiempo que lo ven durante vacaciones. Dylan ya esta loco por sus merengues!

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