NBR: how much do you spend per person? immediate family Christmas gifts — The Bump
Toddlers: 24 Months+

NBR: how much do you spend per person? immediate family Christmas gifts

I was raised in a frugal family, but since there were only 4 of us (mom, dad, brother, me) presents at Christmas became a big thing, with everybody getting and giving several to everyone else.

Now that I'm married I'm realizing I really need to cut back presents with my immediate family! NOW I have 1 husband, 4 parents, 4 siblings, and 1 LO. 

My immediate family has definitely...... "noticed" that we've cut back in the present area. I feel a bit badly about it! What do I do? Do I say something to explain? Or do I try to save more during the year so I can keep up my present giving habits? Have you had to do similarly?

How much do you spend (guesstimate) per person for your immediate family, and how many people are there?

We have 10 people in immediate family, and I'm trying to keep to $40 per/person (but we spend less on LO because she doesn't care yet). 

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Re: NBR: how much do you spend per person? immediate family Christmas gifts

  • $35-40 per person. Our family has grown as well. We also used to do bigger gifts but times have been tough so cutting back was necessary.
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  • Brother/Brother's GF - $50

    Mom - $75

    Dad - $75-$125 (He does a lot of babysitting and picks up DS from preschool twice a week

    DS - $120ish

    DD - $75

    We do not always buy for my ILs because they never buy for us.  Sometimes DH will feel bad last minute and send them each (they're divorced) Omaha steaks or something.  This drives me crazy since they never buy for us.  Not that it should matter, but geezus, send something for the kids!

  • A couple years ago, my family switched to a "white elephant" gift exchange instead of buying for every member of the family (I have 3 siblings and all have significant others).  We spend about $40 on the gift and then we assign numbers each family member and they take turns choosing a gift.  They can "steal" someone else's gift if they really like what the person has gotten and then that person gets to open another gift.  It's a really fun tradition.  Not sure if your family would be up for that sort of thing, but it's worth considering. You save a lot of time and money.  Don't get me wrong, I still do a lot of Xmas shopping, because I buy for DH, LO, and DH's family, and a couple of my friends. But I try to keep each persons' gifts at around $40.  We spend a lot more on LO--she usually gets a big gift (this year a play kitchen, last year a playhouse) and a few small gifts--about $200 worth.    

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  • Now that all siblings on both sides are married and have kids, we only buy for the children and our parents.  Usually $50 per parent.  And then anywhere from $35 to $50 per child (there's 4 nieces and nephews, so that's not including my own 2 kids). 
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  • Immediate family we spend between $25-50.  DHs family has a $25 spending limit, which we follow except for his parents which we do about $50.  My family we don't buy for my 2 brothers and their wives, just the kids (which helps).  My parents and 2 sisters get $40-50 spent on them.  Sisters boyfriends $25. Nieces and nephews $25 each.

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  • I have to buy for my mom, dad, and 3 sisters. DH is an only child, so just his mom and dad. My budget is 300, not inclusing DD (we spent about 175 on her this year). Breaks down like this :

    - $40 each sister from DH and I = 120

    -$50 each my folks = 100

    -$20 each DH's folks = 40

    -$10 each my sisters from DD  (like a cute necklace or photobook)= 30

    -$10 gift to DH's parents from DD for a total of $300.

    I also have to get for 3 of my friend's kids. We are only buying for kids of friends, not friends this year which saves a whole lot.

  • We spend $50 on each of our parents, sisters, BIL and nephews. $25 on grandmas. It's 13 people altogether. I usually spend between $150-200 on DD. DH and I do $75-100 on each other.
    image image

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  • This is a basic breakdown of what we do...we don't really spend a lot of money...

    $50 gift certificate for brother and SIL

    $50 gift certificate for mom and her husband

    $50 dad

    $30 dad's girlfriend

    $100 MIL

    $100-$150 on kids

    With DH's family, we do a very small gift exchange $20.  There's way to many people to buy for.  I like it.  I'd rather not buy for my family at all, and just buy for the kids, but no one will go for it.  

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  • We do white elephant with our family as well.  We set a $20 limit and over the years, it has become more of a prank gift type thing and it's pretty hilarious to see what people come up with.  It definitely has the family cracking up and having a great time the entire night.  We spend Christmas with our extended family as well, which could be as many as 25 people.

    How has your family "noticed"?  I don't think I would care if someone else is cutting back on gifts.

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  • It depends on our financial situation each year, but this year it's:

    ~$200 per LO

    ~$30 for DH

    $10-$15 for each of our siblings (I have 5 siblings, DH has 3) 

    $15-$20 for our parents (one gift for each set of parents)


    Anneliese Olive 11/5/09
    Hazel Dianna 1/8/11
    Luna Valentine 4/25/13

  • $50/person (and we buy for 10, plus each other and our own kids). Sometimes we go over for parents but not outrageously so. How do you know that they noticed? Maybe suggest a secret santa or something. 
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  • $50-$75 for each of my parents

    $40 for each nephew/niece/goddaughter (6 in all)

    $200-$300 DH

    $150-$200 DD

    $100 on sibling gift (draw names so only one gift for this)

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  • $75ish for each parent (divorced)...this includes a small stocking

    $40-50 for my sister (only sibling)

    $100-$150 DH, including stocking stuffers

    $200 on DS

    $40 on DD (newborn)

    $50 on sitter/her kids

    $40 on secret santa at work

    $10-20 on speech therapist

    $30 for each nephew (3)

    We also do a craft for MIL and pro pics of the kids or small something, but don't really exchange, her bday is right before Xmas. DH doesnt exchange with his sibs, per their request. He has no contact with his dad.  

    DS 8/29/09 (3yo) DD 11/29/11 (8mo)
  • We spend the following:

    $50 on each of our parents

    $100 on each other

    $150 on DS (didn't get much for his birthday in August from us so we are spending more on Christmas)

    $100 on DD (spending more on her for her birthday in March)

    $50 on my sister (no SO)

    $30 on DHs nephew (limit set by BIL/SIL as they have several nephews to buy for on the other side of the family  - if it was our choice it would be $50)

    Last year was the first year we didn't exchange with BIL/SIL since we all have kids now but we had spend $50 on each of them when we were exchanging gifts with them. 

  • $40-50 for siblings and their spouses (8), max $35 for nieces and nephew (usually less as there are 6), up to $100 for parents (4) but we don't do bday presents.  What I eventually did is talk to my siblings and we agreed not to exchange Christmas or birthday presents - we could choose to do so but there was no expectation.  So usually it is very small things.  With DH's family, we now draw names and there is a $50 cap so we are looking at a $100 spend versus significantly more.  Why don't you suggest a name-drawing Secret Santa thing explaining it would still allow you to get something you want but help with the budget too?

    DD -- 5YO
    DS -- 3YO

  • Thank you all for answering so generously what can be a sensitive topic. I feel reassured, and I've gotten some GREAT ideas from what y'all've posted!
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