I started a few years back saying no to money and gifts for holidays. People need to come together for holidays without spending money. I also think everyone preparing one food item helps take the burden off one person doing all the cooking and spending to make the holiday meal.
You can do many nice things on the holidays that will create beautiful memories that don't cost any money. Play a game outside with the whole family. (croquet, frisbee, fly a kite) or play board game inside scrabble, cards or go fish. Watch a favorite movie on YouTube. Plant a garden with a few seed packs. Make your cards from scratch and big hugs are good too!
I think they are. I think so because we don't know if any religion is true 100% just because some people believe it is doesn't mean it is. And therefore people long ago could have made it up and made holidays to earn money.