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3 Reasons to Give Experiences—Not Things—This Christmas

Is our American culture giving too many things to our children?

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3 Reasons to Give Experiences—Not Things—This Christmas

Is our American culture giving too many things to our children?

My granddaughter’s birthday was coming up and I wasn’t sure what to get her. After some thought I asked her mom if my granddaughter would like to enroll in a soccer program as her gift. My daughter replied, “She’d love that! Thanks for thinking of it. She already has enough stuff.”

Do your kids have too much stuff? As we approach the Christmas season and parents—and grandparents—start thinking about the gifts they want to get their children, many will realize their child already has a room brimming with a wide variety of “stuff.” How do you choose a meaningful, lasting gift that won’t just get lost amongst all the other “stuff”?

Well, how about choosing to give an experience instead? Here’s three reasons to give experiences, not things, this year:

  1. Research from San Francisco State University found that people who spend money on experiences, rather than things, “were happier and felt the money was better spent.” Memories last longer than things!
  2. Dr. Thomas Gilovich of Cornell University conducted a study spanning 20 years and discovered, among other things, that “anticipation of an experience causes excitement and enjoyment, while anticipation of obtaining a possession causes impatience. Experiences are enjoyable from the very first moments of planning, all the way through to the memories you cherish forever.” The anticipation is half the fun of the experience!
  3. Research has revealed some surprising things about how much stuff we own:
  • The average American home has 300,000 items in it.
  • 1 in 10 Americans rent a storage unit to store more stuff.
  • The average 10-year-old owns 238 toys, but plays with just 12 each day.
  • The typical American throws away 65 pounds of clothing each year.

We own a lot of stuff! Do our kids really need more stuff?

This idea of giving experiences—like a soccer program—is becoming increasingly popular with both kids and their parents. It builds anticipation—first you get the gift, then you get to wait to enjoy the gift—and makes lasting memories without cluttering up the house.

If you have an academically-curious young person we have the perfect experience gift for them—summer STEM camp! Our summer camps, which are a unique fusion of science, technology, and truth, are packed with hands-on STEM activities, biblical apologetics training, fellowship with other campers and counsellors, and so much more. Our campers tell us the memories they made at camp will stay with them a long time (and several of our campers have loved camp so much they’ve come back as counselors!).

Time spent at Camp Infinity is a memory your young person will cherish—and they will grow academically and spiritually while making these great memories. What a gift to find under the tree! Learn more and apply today at CampInfinity.com/camps.

 

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Dan Wooster

Dan is the founder of Camp Infinity, a retired computer science professor, cofounder of a software development company, and a member of the board for Answers in Genesis. He lives in Greenville, SC with his wife Karen. They have 3 married children and 4 grand children. He loves to inspire young people with a biblical view of the world, especially science & technology.

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Jason Goff

Jason is the social media manager for Camp Infinity. He loves helping us tell the stories of Ci through the digital mediums of Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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Avery Foley

Avery Foley is a blog writer for Camp Infinity. She holds a bachelors of science in biblical studies and a masters of arts in theological studies. She’s originally from Canada but lives with her husband and young son in Kentucky where she works as a writer for a creation apologetics organization.

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Georgia Purdom

A member of our advisory board, Georgia is a most gifted author, researcher and speaker for Answers in Genesis.

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Jeremy Ervin

Dr. Jeremy Ervin is the Inaugural Dean of the School of Education at Cedarville University. With his experience in providing professional learning for K-12 teachers and his time teaching pedagogy in higher education, he recognizes how the 21st Century classroom needs to center on the engagement of the learner with enduring understandings.

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Robert Ring

RJ is a blog writer for Camp Infinity and a student at Bob Jones University majoring in engineering. He loves considering the science and technology claims of science fiction stories. He also loves reading. Throughout his life he has been a dreamer, imagining a never ending series of what ifs and maybes. From a young age, God gave him a passion for learning all he could about the world around him.

Picture of Dan Wooster
Dan Wooster

Dan is the founder of Camp Infinity, a retired computer science professor, cofounder of a software development company, and a member of the board for Answers in Genesis. He lives in Greenville, SC with his wife Karen. They have 3 married children and 4 grand children. He loves to inspire young people with a biblical view of the world, especially science & technology.

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