It's refreshing though. We are choosing wisely what we are purchasing for presents. Not that we have gone crazy in years past, but I think we are putting more thought into items then we ever have before.
The exciting part for me, is that I'm not wondering "where are they going to put this?" or "What can we get them to get rid of to make room for X or Y" Our children are happily parting with items that they no longer love to play with (or they are packing them away for a time). They truly recognize that the space is worth it ~ to be able to spread out and play with what they have. Which almost makes gift purchasing easier. I'm not sneaking things OUT of the house.
It's also making it easier for me to purchase gifts for my husband, and others. If I'm minimizing what is in our home, how can we bless another individual with something that isn't going to just 'take up space'.
In this I've only come across one problem...the 3rd grade Christmas swap that is happening in Emma's classroom. We have slimmed down so much on things that we don't use, that we are really trying to come up with something in order for her to participate (the rules state that it can not be a new item ~ it needs to be something from home, that you no longer love/use). Um...I got rid of all that stuff! It has given Emma the opportunity to see that there are few things that she has a TON of (Silly bands anyone?). I appreciate that we're not spending $$ on a gift, but at the same time I'm viewing this as a 'junk swap' LOL! I think though, I'd rather have the problem of not knowing what to send in with her, vs the problem of not being able to walk through our house because of the amount of stuff strewn around.