Thinking about not exchanging gifts this year..

Discussion in 'Community Board' started by Oliviaxxx, Nov 4, 2018.

  1. ronandannette

    ronandannette I gave myself this tag and I "Like" myself too!

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    I guess that’s the thing - there are lots of lovely, expensive and time consuming hand-made items given as gifts that unfortunately, the recipient just simply has no value for. I received an intricate knitted piece during our office Secret Santa one year. I could tell who the giver was by the excitement on her face when we were opening the gifts and afterwards several people commented to me about how much work she had put in and how much she looked forward to giving it to me.

    :flower3: While I was touched by that sentiment, I didn’t want the item - it just totally is not me. I’ve got it at home stuffed into a crevice somewhere because it doesn’t seem right to donate it or throw it away but I’ve never worn it and I never will.

    As someone on the “giving end” of this scenario, what would you prefer a recipient do with a piece you lovingly crafted but they don’t want? (This is a honest question.)
     
  2. North of Mouse

    North of Mouse DIS Veteran

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    Our family is not christmas givers or receivers (religious, but not into the 'day', but the year). We would rather give/receive year round, put much thought into our gifts to each other and they are well enjoyed and appreciated.

    Most people I talk to and overhear at this time of year are dreading the gift buying (except for children) and don't want or need the gifts they will receive - lots of 'returning' in January! Is stressful to a lot of people - more relaxing to just get together with family over meals. People feel obligated to participate in the gift giving, which loses much meaning.
     
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  4. Lilacs4Me

    Lilacs4Me DIS Veteran

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    it depends...we think up different rules every year to keep it fun. One year, we had a little novelty game someone found that gave clues to Christmas songs and whoever guessed first got to pick first, and we just went down the line. One year was a drinking game, which we can't do now for a while since the 18 year old set came on the scene lol. One year we picked random numbers and went in order...but however way we choose to start the game, we almost always allow the 2nd person to either pick a new basket or steal from somebody, etc. There are usually one or two baskets that create a buzz and everyone wants, and usually one that nobody picks at all and it becomes the joke. Last year, mine was the one nobody picked - I forgot my packaging at home (we were at my sisters 4 hours away) so I threw it into a large reusable shopping bag from my sisters closet and it looked terrible! But never judge a book by it's cover! My theme was Fire and Ice, and among other cool things in the "basket", which was a sterling silver champagne bucket with cool stuff tucked inside, was a $100 gas card. The person who grudgingly took my basket at the end, was the happiest!
     
  5. Shellsbutt

    Shellsbutt Mouseketeer

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    That sounds wonderful and so stress free! My husband and I stopped exchanging years ago and my sons(25 and 18) only need money. Who doesn't, lol? I've tried for a few years now to convince my mother in law to stop with the gifts. I'm not trying to deny her from buying for her grand kids if she wants, but the youngest(my son) is 18. My husband and I don't need any more junk to store or throw away! It's so funny because she does this whole show of pretending that her sons buy each other x-mas gifts(at 50 years old my brother in law still lives with his mom, but that's a whole other story) but she buys them all herself. It just needs to stop. What do you do about the Christmas tree though? We have a nice fake one but it looks so sad without any gifts underneath it!
     
  6. Disney_Alli

    Disney_Alli DIS Veteran

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    Considering I could make virtually anything a suggestion for something that better fit her style vs a demand for a gift card at the top of our budget would have been much better received personally.

    In your case I would donate it - as a maker I’d much rather an item I made get used by someone than stuffed somewhere never to be enjoyed.
     
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  7. TipsyTraveler

    TipsyTraveler DIS Veteran

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    Put a train under there, wrap empty boxes that can be reused year after year to give the look of a tree stuffed with presents, a nativity scene, put a holiday cat bed and toys under there (nothing cozier than a kitty curled up beneath the tree!), fill in the space with other Christmas decor/mementos. One of my trees has its own photo album that sits underneath. I take a picture each year of the family in front of the tree and add it to this album so we’ll be able to look back and see how the family tree (and the people!) have changed through the years. (I got the idea from someone here, I think.)
     
  8. Turksmom

    Turksmom Mouseketeer

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    Great ideas! We always have to leave a cat space between the presents. You could also wrap items to be donated after the holidays- blankets, boxes of food, etc.
     
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  9. Shellsbutt

    Shellsbutt Mouseketeer

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    Thanks for the ideas! I have three cats, so they all try to fit under there. I have done empty boxes in the past, just seems weird. I could be like my mom- she goes online to order stuff for herself and then wraps and puts them under the tree.
     
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  10. TipsyTraveler

    TipsyTraveler DIS Veteran

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    Do you think it’s possible the person suggested a gift card because they thought it would be simpler for you and they didn’t want to put you out? I know I would feel bad if I knew someone had put hours of work into a gift for me, particularly if the end result didn’t really suit my tastes or I didn’t have much use for it. Honestly, I can’t think of knit anything that would fit with my style except maybe a scarf, and those were piling up in my closet so badly, and with such little opportunity to wear them, that I recently gathered every single one of them up for donation to get them out of my house. I imagine knitwear would be an even harder sell for a twenty-something year old guy.

    I agree with @ronandannette. It doesn’t matter how nice a gift is — it won’t hold any value if it’s not right for the recipient. I’ve given gifts that had me giddy with excitement because I loved it and I knew the recipient would too, but I also knew those gifts would be completely inappropriate for someone else who didn’t share the same interests.
     
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  11. Grumpy's Gal

    Grumpy's Gal DIS Veteran

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    I have a suggestion that just might work for your aunt and uncle. Get them an advent calendar. They need to have it by dec 1 obviously and it can be their present all month. Bonne Maman makes one that’s a tiny jar of jam or honey each of the 24 days. We got one for my in- laws. I think it was $29 but they sell out quickly so it may be too late for this year. I have also seen cheese advent calendars, etc. if you give them a gift dec 1 for them to use the whole month, you can go to Christmas with no present.
     
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  12. disykat

    disykat DIS Veteran

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    We do very little gift giving, especially now that the kids are grown. Under the tree is covered with decorative Christmas tins I've accumulated over the years. I store the Christmas ornaments in them, so they do double duty!
     
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  13. ronandannette

    ronandannette I gave myself this tag and I "Like" myself too!

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    It’s is a good idea, especially if they all sort of look similar and like they “belong” together. We’re in the habit of not setting the gifts out until late Christmas Eve so I usually put some sort of decorative items around the base of ours too but just random items that work for a look. I think I’ll try a little harder this year to find some specific pieces like you have done. :thumbsup2
     
  14. verleniahall

    verleniahall DIS Veteran

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    We do the everyone brings one gift and you can steal game - it gets really funny because EVERY YEAR somone (or multiple people) will just pretend to reuse the gift they got the year before - I think we have been passing around the same gift for 4 years now?? You KNOW it will end up in a gift - u just don’t know which one!
     
  15. neverlandsky

    neverlandsky DIS Veteran

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    We keep it simple now that the kids are teens. It’s socks, pjs, and money/gift cards for them. Me & DH don’t exchange. Our Parents get a restaurant gift and shopping cards. Even our annual Christmas card list went for 40+ to now 5.

    We don’t put our gifts under the tree until everyone is in bed Christmas Eve. So I always make under the tree look snow covered with a white blanket wrapped around it.
     
  16. Disney_Alli

    Disney_Alli DIS Veteran

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    I really wish it was them trying to make it easier but I don’t believe that’s it. Oh well hubby is in charge of buying the GCs and I might have a commission for a shawl for a coworker instead. Meanwhile I’ve almost finished all my blankets and I still have over a month to go. I’m hoping I’ll also finish a gorgeous scarf kit I bought for myself and can wear it on Christmas with the in-laws - just in case anyone asks where it came from lol
     
  17. tinkerdorabelle

    tinkerdorabelle DIS Veteran

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    It does get to be too much. My MIL is the big one that likes gifts and gives many little sometimes silly gifts. I find it wasteful and stressful. So that puts me on the spot to feel I have to buy her and my step FIL more than one. And I have others about 10 others. I would rather we just give and receive one thoughtful inexpensive gift or stop gifts. Only one is an actual child who of course I dote gifts on hehe.
     
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  18. Oliviaxxx

    Oliviaxxx Mouseketeer

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    Ok tonight is the night we are proposing to extended family to do away with exchanging presents. Wish us luck!
     
  19. Grumpy's Gal

    Grumpy's Gal DIS Veteran

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    So WHAT HAPPENED? We are keeping fingers crossed that it went well.:flower3:
     
  20. Oliviaxxx

    Oliviaxxx Mouseketeer

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    IT WAS A SUCCESS. Everyone agreed that it was time to end it. Some even sighed in relief. We will no longer be exchanging on Christmas Eve. No more stress and money spent on useless gifts! We no wish we should have suggested it years ago lol.
     
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  21. ronandannette

    ronandannette I gave myself this tag and I "Like" myself too!

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    Good news. :santa: Enjoy your Christmas!
     
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