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It’s here! Time for the third day of the 5 Day Preparing for the Holiday Themed Blog Hop with the Schoolhouse Review Crew…
Today’s focus is on gift giving. This is an aspect of the holidays that sometimes has me more frazzled and wishing we didn’t exchange gifts at all as the ‘me, me, me’ mentality can easily take hold and overshadow the whole reason for the celebration.
Gifts for Immediate Family Members
When the boys were little, the gifts were either from Santa or us. As they got a bit older, though, they started exchanging small gifts. Typically, those gifts have been from the novelty category of stuff with a short life once opened. Although, the Schleich animals that R gave to J are still being used and in good shape. (I knew that would be the case after reviewing Schleich a few years ago on the TOS Crew.)
Now the older boys are requesting gifts that are a bit beyond the $5 limit I had initiated at first. So long as they keep it rather ‘equal’ in amount and have the resources to do so, I am fine with their bumping up to the $20 mark. Typically, I take them shopping individually do procure the gifts so there can be a surprise come Christmas morning.
Gifts for Extended Family Members
For me, this is often the harder aspect of gift giving. Not living close to my nieces and nephew, it can be a challenge to determine what they’d most enjoy receiving. Of course, now that they are older the idea of a gift card to a favorite store is what gets them excited. Normally, I’d feel it was a bit impersonal. However, the idea of paying as much to ship the gifts as it cost to buy them bothers me even more.
Gift cards have become a go to item for the grandparents, too, as they typically have all they want. My parents do enjoy having ‘cash’ to go out to dinner at a favorite restaurant and that’s the path I’ve taken for a few years now.
One year, my sisters and I opted to not purchase gifts for each other. Instead, we donated that money to the individual’s chosen charity. I have to admit that I loved that option for gift giving as I felt those in need benefited and we all felt better about where the money went.
Gifts for Friends
This is one category we rarely encounter. White elephant exchanges in the homeschool support group is about the extent of it for me right now. Otherwise, I really prefer a gift of my time (e.g. let’s go for lunch or grab a cup of coffee and snack and just visit) or something more personal (e.g. a framed photo that they truly appreciate.)
How to you handle gift giving in your house for the holidays?