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Author Topic: weird gift scenario  (Read 3731 times)

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Re: weird gift scenario
« Reply #15 on: December 10, 2010, 11:15:25 PM »
Pick the smallest group of people you actually like, and give them their gifts sometime other than at the big party. Don't get extravagant so they don't feel odd or obligated.

I personally wouldn't find it all that fulfilling to pick out gifts for strangers through a charity. Well, I would--but it wouldn't be the same KIND of "fulfilling," KWIM?


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Re: weird gift scenario
« Reply #16 on: December 10, 2010, 11:43:35 PM »
My mom was the "cookie woman" in December.  That's the way she showed her friends and loved ones that she loved them.  She would happily spend days making all different kinds of cookies and candies.  When I was old enough I started helping her and we always sang Christmas songs as we baked.  The house smelled so good.

Then she'd make packages containing all of the different varieties and gave them to everyone.  She always gave them around the middle of December to avoid the rush close to Christmas.  It was such fun to deliver the cookies from house to house and have a short visit with folks.  Neighbors, the mailman, and clerks at the stores that she knew got cookies too.

No one was ever uncomfortable and no one felt the need to buy my mom gifts to reciprocate.  It was just a friendly, loving gesture to let people know that she was thinking about them.  Do you think that something like this would work with your friends?  Of course, if you aren't going to give to everyone at the party, I'd give the cookies privately.

My mom also sent out a lot of special Christmas cards (not the boxed generic ones).  She really took time in choosing the right card for people.  I've also known people who carefully make personalized Christmas cards for those they love.  It's the sentiment that counts and to me, a carefully handmade card tells me that someone really thinks a lot of me.


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Re: weird gift scenario
« Reply #17 on: December 12, 2010, 11:50:21 PM »
Would it be possible to exchange names with DH?  Of course, his name could put you in the same spot.  But possibly it might be someone you want to shop for.


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Re: weird gift scenario
« Reply #18 on: December 13, 2010, 04:35:11 PM »
Have you talked to your closest friends about it - outside your social group?

I know I have a couple of friends that, even if we were supposed to be drawing names, I could just call them up and say 'hey, I really want to exchange gifts with you outside the name drawing exchange, it would mean a lot to me" - and they'd say something along with lines of 'sounds good' or 'whatever makes you happy, honey'.

otherwise, do angel tree or a charity - or contact a local church (if you want to get personal) and explain you would like to do something for a family in need.


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Re: weird gift scenario
« Reply #19 on: December 17, 2010, 08:34:43 PM »
Why can't you get the gift for your exchange person and then give gifts separately and outside the group to your close friends?

I also have a group of friends who gather together and do a "dirty santa gift exchange" (choosing the numbers, stealing gifts, etc.)  It's loads of fun.  However, one of these friends also lives locally and we have been child sharing and hanging out together and are quite close.  I will probably get her an additional gift as well.  It won't necessarily be made public to the "group" (although even if it were, no one would probably care).

As long as you don't present the other gifts in front of the whole group, I don't see the problem with buying presents for anyone you want.


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Re: weird gift scenario
« Reply #20 on: December 19, 2010, 10:55:13 AM »
As long as you don't present the other gifts in front of the whole group, I don't see the problem with buying presents for anyone you want.

This. I think all the "equalizing" is what makes Christmas so stressful! Also, making homemade gifts is SO very "Christmas-y" and fun! If you like to shop, though, I'm pretty sure there are foster kids in your community who could use some new clothes, toiletries and/or "fun stuff" ;-) I've done this before and it's very enjoyable!


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Re: weird gift scenario
« Reply #21 on: December 19, 2010, 11:35:07 AM »
What I've done is told everyone "I love Christmas, and I go a little overboard with presents, but I really enjoy finding gifts for people, so I've got a little present for everyone." They all smiled, enjoyed the thought of an extra present, and didn't feel put upon to reciprocate, so I thought explaining it like that (in that, it brings me real joy to give the gifts) worked well. Maybe the same thing would work for you?

While I admire the spirit, I would hate to have been on the receiving end, thinking "oh dear, I didn't get her one, now what??" (although I wouldn't say anything, especially not in a work environment, and respond with a grateful smile as well)
My in-laws one year decided to only buy for the (grand)kids, since the adults have all they really want anyway, and we didn't need more stuff. We all agreed, and then that year, one couple bought gifts for us anyway, because they just thought it would be nice. I felt terrible to not have anything to give in return!! Que the next year, and everybody is buying for everybody again. I might introduce charitable giving next year.

For the OP, I would try changing names with my husband, or bite the bullet this year, but not participate the next. I would not buy gifts for all my friend to give at another time, I think that might put them in an uncomfortable place, reciprocity wise. The charity way may be a better way to express your generosity.