Why I Love the 4-Gift Rule

I am a huge fan of the 4-Gift Rule for holidays and birthdays. We started this past Christmas and continued it for our daughter’s 2nd birthday. The 4-Gift Rule is an easy way to minimize how many gifts you purchase and, even better, it really allows you and your child to think about what items are most needed. I like this gift-giving method because it requires intentionality.

Now, our daughter only just turned 2 years old so she’s still not really able to say what she wants in regard to presents. However, she has loved all art activities for the past few months so when she started grabbing our paintbrushes and pretending to paint everything in sight we ran with the idea and assembled an art kit that included some watercolor paints and a paint brush, a very nice wooden tabletop easel set from Nova Natural, a fabric art smock, and Children’s Color & Shape Wallet Cards from SO Awesome.

1. Stockmar Watercolor Paint (Set of 3 Primary Colors) and Paint Brush 2. Wooden Tabletop Easel Set 3. Long Sleeve Cotton Art Smock 4. SO Awesome Children’s Color & Shape Wallet Cards

All the items chosen will last several years, which is one of the most important things I like to consider when choosing gifts for our daughter. And in the case of the easel, it should last, um, forever I hope. It really is beautiful! So we now have a wonderful selection of art materials that our daughter will be able to use for years to come. Nice and simple, right?

With Easter approaching, we hope to instill in our daughter the true reasons for celebration: the resurrection of Jesus Christ and the forthcoming of Spring. We are not making a big fuss about the Easter Bunny, although she will be participating in an egg hunt on Easter Sunday. As a family, we’ve been enjoying hiking more and more as the weather has turned warmer, and Lilly has taken a keen interest in bugs and insects within the past month, so we assembled a nature-themed gift basket backpack that she will receive Easter Sunday morning. It includes a child-size hiking backpack, a water bottle, a bug magnifier, and a field guide — all items that she will be able to use for several years.

1. CamelBak eddy Kids .4L Water Bottle 2. Carson BugLoupe 5x Magnifier 3. CAMTOA Child-Size Hiking Backpack 4. Caterpillars, Bugs and Butterflies: Take-Along Guide

And, yes, in case you couldn’t tell I’m a huge fan of themed gift baskets that fulfill your child’s interests. Yet another reason why the 4-Gift Rule can be great is because it requires you as a parent to slow down and really pay attention to what subject matter is holding your child’s attention, what is sparking their curiosity, and what they enjoy the most and then select your gifts to match those interests.

In full disclosure, our “Read” category will not be relegated exclusively to books. It comprises board games and cards as well. And that’s part of the beauty with the 4-Gift Rule: You can tailor it to fit your family in whichever way is best, while still being deliberately thoughtful in which gifts you are choosing.

For those families who have also adopted the 4-Gift Rule or something similar, what about it do you love the most? And for those who haven’t, what do you feel is holding you back from trying it?

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