6 Ridiculous Things Parents Are Doing This Holiday Season
The holidays usually make people go a little nuts, in good ways and in bad. There are great things that cause people to go crazy and celebrate, like the New Year’s Eve or Halloween decorating competitions. These can make wonderful traditions and experiences that end up being the highlight of the whole year for family and friends.
There are also some ridiculous things people during the holidays that aren’t so great. People will go all out to check things off their to-do list or get in the holiday spirit for their kids, but this can sometimes come at a price. Keep reading to see some of the ridiculous things parents are doing this holiday season so you can stay smart and avoid making the same mistakes.
Paying High Prices to Meet Santa
A standard tradition for many families is taking some time to head to the nearest mall, festival or parade to meet Santa. Families wait in long lines just to get a few pictures, which is a sweet tradition that plenty of little kids look forward to. There’s nothing wrong with letting your kids meet a figure they look up to, but that changes when there’s a price tag.
People who are just out to get money will seize on this tradition because they know how much it means to parents. Some parents will pay high prices to meet Santa. Prices range from $50-100 and can go even higher, depending on where the Santa meet and greet happens. Don’t hand over that much cash to get a picture of your kids with Santa! Look around online to compare prices and find something much more reasonable or even free.
Going Into Debt for Toys
There’s a lot of pressure that comes with the holidays when you’re a parent. You have to provide an amazing holiday experience for your kids, set up traditions and then host a large family dinner or two. Another factor that might be laying on the pressure is the thought of getting enough presents for your kids. Will they like them? Will it be enough?
No one wants to disappoint their kids on Christmas morning, which is why Americans on average spend $1,000 each year on gifts. Not everyone has that much money, so it’s common to put it all on a credit card and try to pay it back later. That results in only more financial stresses, since interest rates will charge more each month. As long as kids have a reason to smile on Christmas morning, they’ll love whatever you get them, no matter how little spent.
To avoid overpaying for toys your kids will phase out of in a few months or a year, consider investing in their outdoor play. An outdoor play area will last a long time, so you’ll be safely putting money into something that lasts. While other kids will be getting gifts that will only keep them glued to the couch, you can encourage your kids to get a healthy amount of outdoor play and exercise by getting an outdoor play structure.
Getting Texts from Santa
Even though writing someone a letter is quickly becoming a thing of the past, kids still want to be able to send Santa their wish list or find proof of him on Christmas morning. The 21st century equivalent of this is to get texts from Santa, which is another way parents go to ridiculous extremes for the sake of the holiday.
Santa is supposed to deliver everyone’s gifts for free, but he charges per text. Parents can choose how little to text him, but it still costs money. The smart alternative for everyone is to save your money, have your kids write their letters and then drop it off at a department store that will have a mailbox for Santa. It’ll be the same experience, without any scams.
Taking Beard Tree Selfies
There are different levels of ridiculous holiday efforts, but decorating your beard and taking selfies definitely falls on that scale. If you want to potentially have that picture in your family forever, you can follow other parents’ leads and get mini ornaments with hooks. Grow your beard out and have your kids decorate it, then take pictures with them. It’s a silly thing to do but it might be something you’ll want to do year after year.
Writing Notes from Santa
The mystery of Santa is what drives kids to want to be able to talk to him. If he really exists, they’d find proof, right? That’s exactly why parents stay up all night on Christmas Eve writing notes that Santa can leave behind. If they don’t want to make them on their own, they can hire other people to write and decorate them. It keeps the belief in Santa going for one more year for kids, but as they get older, it’ll seem more ridiculous to keep doing.
Falling for Toy Scams
Corporations make big money during the holiday season, which is why they like to publish or get sponsored on lists that tell parents exactly what their kid is looking for this year. The pressure is especially high if the kids say that they do want what’s on the list, or write down similar toys on their letters to Santa. If the world is saying it’s what kids want and that’s what their kid is asking for, parents might cave into crazy searches for that specific toy.
This is another way scammers take advantage of people during the holidays. They’ll buy up popular toys and sell them at higher prices, ripping desperate parents off in the last few days leading up to Christmas. Be smart by shopping for gifts as early as possible and only buying toys from known retailers. You could end up saving yourself from the ridiculous embarrassment of falling for a scam.
Everyone has their own holiday traditions, and people might point fingers at each other and laugh about how ridiculous they are. No matter what your friends and family do that you find funny or over the top, the truly ridiculous things that parents do during the holidays are really what comes back to hurt them.
Beware of the increase in scams, since people aren’t afraid to take advantage of parents looking for a popular toy or a picture with Santa. Don’t let holiday pressure get you to spend money you don’t have. Taking precautions with these things will make your holiday experience one for the books, instead of being another holiday you’re anxious to get through.