Today was a productive day. We had more help through the early afternoon, and with all of the drywall going up yesterday, we were able to start mudding and taping the walls today. We also got some more dinky work done like cleaning the floors and filling in cracks with expanding foam. (Sorry, I forgot the camera at home with all of the hustle.)
We got home around 3:00, just in time to fit some naps in. (Any later and it would have messed up bed time.) I spent the rest of the afternoon and evening packing. Which leads me to this post.
Our new house MAYBE will have an equal amount of storage in it as where we are at now. We have a basement here where we don't in our new house, but we will have above closet storage with our 10 ft ceilings. Also, the outdoor access storage area and attic can hold some overflow, but I don't want to put just anything in those areas. Where we are at is full now - and I frequently declutter and move unneeded things out. So the concern now is that with our kids being young and with a family that is still growing, there is a lot more stuff that will most likely come into the house.
When I thought about the size of families years ago and the size of houses they used to live in, it occurred to me that it isn't the size of the family that outgrows the house, it is the amount of stuff the family has. And I don't want to outgrow our house because of stuff.
So with birthdays and Christmas soon approaching (and many more years of them to come), I need your help! I am looking for gift ideas for the kids (4, 2, and on the way) that are not stuff. Here are some things that I have come up with:
*Postage stamps for the kids to send letters to grandparents (they love it when they get to help me send letters)
*Labor and/or materials for a sand box, rock box, or swing set (okay, that's outdoor stuff - but we have 40 acres that we are starting fresh with)
*Gift certificates or passes to something fun like the zoo, science center, botanical center, etc and a meal out for our family and the gift giver
*Gift certificates for a personal pan pizza or desert at Dairy Queen (the kids LOVE getting these!)
*Money, bonds, or CDs for college funding
*A pair of swim trunks or swim suit and money towards swimming lessons
*A music book and money for music lessons (this might not be for a couple years I guess)
And that's about as far as I've gotten.
With our gift giving culture and seeing other fun gifts that others get, it is hard to think of non-stuff gifts that would be fun to receive as well as open. I'm hoping that if the kids learn what getting some of these non stuff gifts means, waiting for the actual gift won't be that big of a deal. The key is to find things they will enjoy doing more than things they will enjoy having.
I hope no one hears me wrong, since we are thankful for the generosity of so many people - it's just we don't want to outgrow our house due to stuff. (A little stuff is okay, but a little stuff from a lot of people sure adds up quickly!) So if anyone has fun ideas of non-stuff gifts to put on lists, I would love to hear them!