Author Topic: Christmas gifts for adults in extended family  (Read 1947 times)

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SheryllJane

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Christmas gifts for adults in extended family
« on: October 17, 2010, 11:57:39 PM »
Hello Group:
BG:  I have 2 adult children, 20 and 23, and my 23 year old is engaged to another 23 year old.  No grandkids yet.    My older brother has 4 kids. 2 are married, and the other 2 have relationships. He has 2 grandkids.  I also have a brother who just came back home after being gone for 4 years or so, he is about 40 and single. 

To keep things manageable I would like to suggest that every adult bring a gift card, and we can have a gift card exchange where you draw numbers, etc.  This works well with my husbands family and is pretty stress free. 

Any ideas on how to broach this with my brother and his wife? 
Thanks

lucybellpug

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Re: Christmas gifts for adults in extended family
« Reply #1 on: October 18, 2010, 12:41:57 AM »
I would just bring it up soon and just see their reaction.  I would do each adult brings one gift card throw them in a hat and everyone draw one out.  The kids I would still have everyone buys gifts for them if they are young, if not ask them to join in giftcard drawing.  This may relieve some stress financially for some due to poor economy.

blarg314

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Re: Christmas gifts for adults in extended family
« Reply #2 on: October 18, 2010, 02:37:50 AM »

I'd give them a few option to make the gifting more manageable - not just the random gift card exchange. That will make it more likely that they would agree.

One option is to draw names among the adult members of the family - each person gets a gift for one other person. The engaged people or spouses can be included as individuals, or you can group couples together. Then for the grandkids I'd give them gifts as a family unit - ie, you and your kids give one gift to each of the grandkids as a group.  Those gifts could be for gift cards, if the people giving want to do that.

Personally, I'd find the gift card exchange impersonal and rather pointless - basically, it's not much different than exchanging cash, because you have to choose something fairly generic, so that it could be equally enjoyed by the 40 single guy, the parents with small kids, and the 20 year old.

camlan

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Re: Christmas gifts for adults in extended family
« Reply #3 on: October 18, 2010, 09:51:12 AM »
I agree with blarg. Trying to find one gift card that would suit anyone in your extended family would be stressful for me. I'd much rather some sort of name draw, so that I know who I'm getting the gift for and can tailor it to that person. Frankly, I'd be worried that I'd end up with a card for a place I never go to and can't use.

My dad's side of the family is huge--I have 31 cousins. In my extended family, aunts and uncles gave gifts until the nieces and nephews were 18, and there was also a name draw, so that if you had 5 kids, you drew 5 names and only gave to those nephews and nieces. After that, you were considered an adult and were added to the Christmas card list, but didn't get gifts. My dad and his siblings didn't exchange gifts as adults. My immediate family does a name draw for the adult siblings, but we all give gifts to the nieces and nephews under 18.

Another thing you could do would be to give a dollar limit--say, no gift over $15. That can generate some creative thinking and lead to some interesting gifts.

My thought would be to discuss the issue with your two brothers and SIL. See if they are interested and what their suggestions are, and come up with something you can all agree on.
Nothing is impossible, the word itself says, “I’m possible!” –Audrey Hepburn


Dindrane

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Re: Christmas gifts for adults in extended family
« Reply #4 on: October 18, 2010, 10:26:40 AM »
I think blarg has the right idea.  Personally, I'd bring this up as, "It's getting sort of difficult to buy gifts for everyone, and I think it might be a good idea to come up with some sort of alternative that has us all spending less money per gift, or maybe buying gifts for fewer people.  Would you be willing to try out some sort of gift exchange?"

I would approach that conversation with ideas in mind to offer, but I'd ask for ideas from your siblings as well.

In my extended family, because my mom had 3 siblings, there were 8 adults other than my grandparents, and 13 children.  There was never a time when any of my aunts or uncles gave gifts to all of their nieces or nephews at Christmas, because that would have been too much.  Instead, we had two name draws--one for the grown-ups, and one for the kids.  We did it by generation, though, rather than age.  Each kid would draw a name, and each grown up would draw a name (that wasn't someone in their immediate family), so everybody both gave and received one gift.  My grandparents gave gifts to everyone, and they were the only ones who did.

Eventually, we did away with even that.  Now I don't exchange presents with anyone except my immediate family on a regular basis.


high dudgeon

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Re: Christmas gifts for adults in extended family
« Reply #5 on: October 18, 2010, 10:38:55 AM »
If you want to change things, I would bring it up soon. I've already started Christmas shopping and I wouldn't be interested in going to a new gift exchange format this year for a group if I'd already bought them non-gift card presents. I agree with blarg and Dindrane and really like Dindrane's wording. I'd suggest the gift card exchange, a price limit, a Secret Santa exchange, and ask the siblings if any of those appealed to them or if they had any other suggestions.

Personally, I don't understand the point of exchanging gift cards for the same amount.  For Christmas, I used to get my stepmonster a $50 gift card, and she'd give me a $50 check and I didn't feel we were exchanging presents so much as that I was selling her a gift card to celebrate the birth of Jesus. It just never felt fun or festive to me, the way picking out an actual gift does.

Sharnita

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Re: Christmas gifts for adults in extended family
« Reply #6 on: October 18, 2010, 10:53:49 AM »
You said that one of the individuals involved is single correct?  Would this mean that his Christmas would consist of getting an unknown family member a gift card and getting a gift card and that is pretty much it?  The rest of you would be getting gifts within the smaller family but he has no smaller family?

QuilaZen

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Re: Christmas gifts for adults in extended family
« Reply #7 on: October 18, 2010, 11:08:54 AM »
Agree with the advice above.  One other issue to consider is siblings' grandchildren.  In the future, with 6 young adults in the family, the grandchild population could get very large.  In hubby's (large) extended family, people don't as a matter of course buy for each other's grandkids.

In our family, we went to setting a $ limit and drawing names for adults.  What to do about kids is left to the adults.  With hubby's family, they decided to not exchange gifts among the adults,

kudeebee

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Re: Christmas gifts for adults in extended family
« Reply #8 on: October 18, 2010, 02:55:58 PM »
Why not forget the gift exchange and just have a nice dinner together instead?

Marlene

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Re: Christmas gifts for adults in extended family
« Reply #9 on: October 18, 2010, 03:24:48 PM »
When my (older) brother got married and had kids we decided I'd only exchange presents with the kids (and vice versa). Now that I have a family as well,  it's just our kids who exchange presents. (NB: we're in Europe where Christmas presents have to-and-from stickers on them, they're not from Santa).

We still exchange presents with BIL&SIL (on my partner's side), mainly as a continuation of the tradition Partner and BIL had established before SIL and I came into the picture.
 

camlan

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Re: Christmas gifts for adults in extended family
« Reply #10 on: October 18, 2010, 03:43:00 PM »
You said that one of the individuals involved is single correct?  Would this mean that his Christmas would consist of getting an unknown family member a gift card and getting a gift card and that is pretty much it?  The rest of you would be getting gifts within the smaller family but he has no smaller family?

In my family, three of the siblings are single, the others are all married. There's a name draw, and you buy gifts for the person who's name you picked, plus their spouse and kids.

But the three single people felt weird because they all get together and celebrate Christmas together--and it was odd to be opening gifts from people who weren't there. And there was a really awkward year where the gifts for two of the three were held up in transit, so only one person had anything to open. So they created their own rule that they would also buy gifts for each other, with a limit of $30.

It can be difficult to balance the gift giving when there are some married and some single adults. That's why talking about the situation and listening to suggestions is a good idea. The single guy may think only having to buy one gift card is a great idea, or he could feel lonely and left out.
Nothing is impossible, the word itself says, “I’m possible!” –Audrey Hepburn


Dindrane

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Re: Christmas gifts for adults in extended family
« Reply #11 on: October 18, 2010, 03:48:37 PM »
(NB: we're in Europe where Christmas presents have to-and-from stickers on them, they're not from Santa). 

As a sidenote, in my experience in the US, gifts from "Santa" are usually just from parents to their young children (or however long the parents decide to keep up the pretense--I still get gifts from "Santa" and I'm 25 :P).  People who exchange gifts with their siblings or cousins or aunts and uncles or whoever do it without involving Santa Claus. :)