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What your kids really want for Christmas

What your kids really want for ChristmasChristmas is just a few days away. So, what questions are most kids hearing lately?

"What do you want for Christmas?" or "What's on your Christmas wish list?"

Your children will certainly tell you what they want. Very likely it's one of the most popular gifts everyone talks about in their age group. It could be that newest Play station, Xbox, PC games or whatever the newest thing is now.

Yes, it's very delightful to watch your children opening up the gifts under the Christmas tree and getting excited when they see the gift they wanted. Just looking at their happy faces could make parents feel it's worth it. Their happiness is worth all the money, time and efforts put into that desired gift.

But have you ever wondered what happened to the toy that you gave as a Christmas gift last year? Your child may have forgotten all about it. It may be put away or lost somewhere in the house.

The most desired and wanted gift may not last that long and may not be so important after all.

During the holiday season, if you find yourself in the shopping craze and feel the insanity going around you, maybe you need to slow down and ask the question: "Is it really worth it?"

For some families, the real question is: "Is it really worth it to get into debt so you can buy a few minutes of happiness for your children or so your children can have what their friends have?"

And don't forget to think about the credit card bills coming in the mail in January.

I believe the most important Christmas gift for your children is not something you find in the store or online and it's not something you can buy.

It's something unique and special that no manufacturer can make and no one else has except you. What your children really want in their heart is yourself: your time, your love and your affection. This is something they can't get from any toy and money cannot buy.

We often say children are God's gifts to parents. The same thing can also be said about parents. You as parent are the gift to your children. So give more of yourself and your time to your children, not more of the toys.

Some parents use toys to trade their own guilt of not having enough time for their children or not loving them enough. The indulgent parents will only create an entitlement problem that has become an epidemic in our society.

Don't use money or gifts to measure love. Love comes from your heart, not from your pocket. The very best presents we give and receive are those very special gifts from the heart.

If you give enough of yourself to your children, you don't need to buy them expensive gifts to show your love for them.

Amid the holiday busyness and stress, remember to slow down and spend time with your children. Do something together for fun. Put your time and energy into creating a Christmas that focuses on people rather than on gifts.

You can create a wonderful Christmas holiday for your children without going through the psychological and financial stress. In doing so, you will leave special memories that will linger long after the holiday ends.

As parents we need to teach our children that there's much more to Christmas than just giving and receiving gifts.

Why do we celebrate Christmas? Whom are we celebrating? What's the real meaning of Christmas?

The other day I casually asked my children the question "What do you think is more important, being rich in money and things or rich in love?"

My 8-year-old daughter said without hesitation: "Rich in love." I was pretty proud of her response. Sounds like she knows what Christmas is all about.

Merry Christmas to every one of you and have a wonderful holiday.