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Why Drew Barrymore doesn't buy her daughters Christmas gifts

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - OCTOBER 08: Drew Barrymore speaks onstage at Jamie Lee Curtis: Tribute to 45 years of Halloween and Laurie Strode, Moderated by Drew Barrymore during New York Comic Con 2022 on October 08, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images for ReedPop)
Drew Barrymore reveals that she gives her kids Christmas vacations instead of presents. (Photo: Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images for ReedPop)

When it comes to Christmas gifts, Drew Barrymore says she'd rather give her children experiences over consumer goods.

The actress and host, 47, revealed why she chooses not to buy holiday presents for her two daughters — Frankie, 8, and Olive, 10, with ex-husband Will Kopelman — and instead opt for memorable vacations.

"I always take them on a trip every Christmas,” she told Entertainment Tonight’s Nichelle Turner. “I don't get them presents, which I think at their ages they don't love, but I say, 'I think we'll remember the place and the photos and the experience and that's what I want to give you.’

Still, Barrymore insists that she’s no Grinch. “I'm glad I do what I do,” she said. “They get plenty of things throughout the year, so I'm not like some weird, strict, cold mom who's like, 'You don’t get any gifts!’ I just feel like a better gift would be a life memory. I'd rather invest [in that than in] a doll house or something. It all evens out and it's fine."

To be fair, gifts aren’t entirely out of the equation. On Christmas 2020, when travel and large get-togethers were limited due to the pandemic, Barrymore decided to break tradition and opt for buying the girls traditional gifts.

"I'm fine to skip this. This sucks,” she remembered thinking at the time, noting that Frankie and Olive "don't complain about not liking what they get."

Given her daughters’ age, Barrymore says that at this point in her life she’s treasuring every Christmas memory she can.

"[I try] to remember that one holiday won't be probably the same as one 10 years from now, that your life can dramatically change, and new people and new traditions can come into it," she said. "I like looking at the holidays through a comedic, realistic lens of, we're gonna have a lot of different holiday stories. What one do you want to keep going and build as a tradition? Rather than, 'This is my tradition and I'm stuck in it.'"

Barrymore has been open about her parenting style in the past, particularly when it comes to limits, such as social media.

"When I became a parent, I knew there were so many things I didn't want to do, but it didn't mean I had the tools to know what it was I should do,” she told Rob Lowe on his podcast, Literally!, in September. “And, boy, I felt very intimidated. I'm not going to lie, it took me a lot of years to gain confidence as a parent."

Eventually, she says she figured out what works for her as a parent.

“I won't even let my kids be on social media," she said. “They can look at it. I don't want them to be the odd kids. Or you know, I don't want to deprive them to the point of rebellion. I'm like, 'You can watch it all you want. I trust you. I'll come monitor it. But I'm not going to be a hawk and drive you crazy, but I'm not going to put you on it. You can't open up an account, I'm not going to feature you on mine. I want you to be kids. I want you to be safe. I want you to be protected.' I am so conservative compared to my upbringing."

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