And so will I. Let's face it, my kids will get oodles of stuff from family - too much stuff really - so there's no reason Mom and Dad (aka Santa) need to give more than three. This doesn't include the stockings.
The book Raising Kids Who Will Make a Difference by Susan V. Vogt is a pretty good skim. It might be a worthwhile read if you have older kids. It's section on Christmas, though, is definitely worth a read. In it, Ms. Vogt advocates giving children three gifts: one "heart's desire", one "to grow on" and one article of clothing. Depending on which stage the kids are at, those three categories may merge. My close friend, Catherine, has always stuck with the three present rule: one indoor toy, one outdoor toy and one "to grow on" (e.g., art supplies, book).
So three seems to be the magic number. If it was good enough for baby Jesus, well, you get the picture.
My boys will be getting three gifts each this year:
heart's desire - a keyboard
one to grow on - Peter and the Wolf book and CD
one article of clothing - a cozy sweater
heart's desire - train the goes 'round the Christmas tree
one to grow on - a book about vehicles
one article of clothing - a fleece Thomas sweatshirt
So this Christmas, we'll open a few well-thought out gifts and spend the rest of the day enjoying each other instead of opening gifts for hours and dragging piles of once-used wrapping paper out to the trash.