Fifers urged to give children the ‘gift of time’ this Christmas

Anya, Ruth and Eva at the farmers' market.
Anya, Ruth and Eva at the farmers' market.

Three mums have encouraged parents to give their children the ‘gift of time’ at Christmas in a bid to reduce waste.

Anya Hart Dyke, Ruth Nicolle and Eva Groeneveld dressed up as giant Christmas gifts and attended the farmers’ market in St Andrews last week, to help promote the idea.

The three mums, who were joined by their children, spoke to parents about ‘gift of time’ ideas, to help them discover an alternative to traditional gifts.

The aim is that parents buy fewer gifts for their children and instead more time with each other.

“It is to get a bit of humour into it,” said Anya before the weekend, explaining why the trio were dressing up.

“It might make it easier for conversations with people if we are dressed up.”

Anya described the ‘gifts of time’ as “back to basics” ideas, such as building dens and telling stories.

“You tailor the gifts to the interests of the children and spend a couple of hours doing that,” she added. “You don’t get round to doing that anywhere as often as you would like to.”

Anya, who has two children, aged two and five, will release a book in the next few weeks, sharing ideas for ‘gifts of time’ and is encouraging other parents to get in touch with their ideas.

“It’s a tool for what to do with children and how to communicate our environmental impact with them,” she said.

After the success of the event at the weekend, Anya is hoping for volunteers from across Fife, Perth, Dundee and Edinburgh to join her in doing a follow-up. Anyone interested in taking part can contact Anya on

Anya has added a new section to her website, giving parents ideas for ‘gifts of time’. These can be found at

You can share your ideas on Facebook and Twitter using #wrapyourselfupthisChristmas.