Have you ever heard of a family forgoing gifts for the holidays to create a different way to celebrate? Often you hear the stories after the fact and think, “Wow, I wish I would have done that.” So, at the beginning of the gift giving season, let’s see what unique holiday exchange ideas you could implement for this year.
Pick A Name
Place all family member’s names on separate pieces of paper and place in a bowl. Each family member pulls a name. Then there is only one person to buy or make a gift for. A spending limit can be applied based on the ages of the family members. For children under 10, $5; over 10, $15 and adults, $25. The stress of finding the perfect gift for every person in your family melts away, and you can enjoy one of the best gifts of the holidays: being with each other.
Pick A Charity
Instead of giving gifts to each other this year consider giving either locally or internationally. Every year I receive a catalog from Samaritan’s Purse where you can “gift” a sheep or a baby chick to a family in a third world country. It is exciting to peruse the pages picking a gift of giving to help others. View their online catalog at www.samaritanspurse.org.
Locally, Metropolitan Ministries provides hope for hurting families. They have a holiday tent set up to accept food and gifts to help 18,000 families this season. This is a wonderful way to share the gift of giving with your children by picking out a new toy for
another child in need. Bring unwrapped holiday gifts and canned food items to the holiday tent at 905 North Governor Street, Tampa, FL 33602. Hours are Monday – Friday, 8a.m. to 6:30p.m. and Saturday from 8a.m. to 4pm. www.metromin.org
Three Kings Day
Another tradition my friends started many years ago was to get together in January to do our gift exchange. Getting in on the “after” holiday sales made our gift giving cost effective and fun. Everything from gift bags and holiday cards to perfume gift sets and holiday themed coffee and mugs go on sale.
Or take advantage of sales on Offers.com at www.offers.com/after-christmas/. Find name brand offerings from Sears, Kohl’s, Kmart, Target and Amazon, just to name a few. You’ll also find 20% off on calendars from Calendars.com. A perfect gift item for the new year.
After getting great deals, we have a party with food, fun and inexpensive gift giving. In 2017, Three Kings Day is on January 6, 2017.
12 Days Of Christmas
Spread the excitement of the holidays over several days and watch your children squeal in delight. Starting December 13th, one gift is opened each day until Christmas. Wrap 12 gift boxes and fill with stocking stuffer items from cards to fuzzy socks occasionally adding in bigger gifts like movie tickets or electronics.
My friend Cheryl shared this tradition with her children when they were younger. She added a special touch of a personalized note inside each box. The notes would share the meaning behind Christmas songs or a sweet saying from another family member.
What unique holiday gift giving idea will you share with your family and friends this year?
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