I was reading Girlys’ Blog the other day, where she wondered how to buy Holiday Gifts on her current budget. She wrote, “ I’m wondering if anyone will accept a macaroni-spray-painted-jar as a Christmas gift. It was a hit when I was 7.”
This got me to thinking…
Christmas gift-giving in some families is a sort of competition. You bought me a nice pair of Reindeer pajamas worth $12.99? I gave you a great, re-gifted pair of glittery snowman socks. Hand-knitted by our dead granny. Back in 1972! Boo-Yah! -
Other Re-Giftables which you should now scour your house and closets for include:
- Candles (unburned)
- Scarves (snot-free, please; better check first)
- Last Christmases underwear your mother bought you (preferably un-used, and still in the wrapper)
- Unused or ‘slightly broken, bulky kitchen appliances, still in the box
- Anything you find, still in the box
- Last Years Fruit Cake, still in the can
- Toys your toddlers have outgrown, spit removed
- ALL Sweaters with Snowmen, Santas, Snowflakes, Reindeer or Christmas Trees on them
- Picture Frames (but make sure to fill them with photographs of you, having more fun with other people, people you barely know, people who do not require Christmas gifts from you)
- Used Gift Cards (used up American Express gift cards are especially impressive!)
I’m quite the crafty sort, and many years past, did I not avoid expensive shopping with ‘crafty’ gifts that I had claimed possessed an inherent value, far greater than your store-bought kitsch? My CRAYON PORTRAIT of your cat, lovingly drawn on the back of a cereal box, certainly said ‘I love you’ (as long as it costs me under $1.00). My estimated gift value? $250.00 (and even more if I was famous; Picasso woulda charged $250,000.00 for the same scribble) Total cost to me, including wrapping paper and bows?. $1. 48
And that doesn’t even include the wear and tear on my crayons!
I out-gifted you on Christmas, Once Again, poor fools!
As we struggle to balance finances and relationship-preservation this Holiday Season, trying so desperately not to insult loved ones with cheap gifts, may I suggest, via Girly, that we all just make our gifts this year? Hand crafted gifts are a time-honored tradition. And since it worked for you when you were 7, or even 4, years old, it should still work for us today. I mean, if our family and friends really loved us, that is. They would praise us for our thoughtfulness.
It is the thought that counts, right?
Well, then, I thought to give you this stick I found on my lawn this afternoon.
And once that sad, depressed, recently divorced brother reads the gift tag you’ve thoughtfully attached, he’ll smile, nod appreciatively, and completely ‘get’ your special gift.
If they do not appreciate our hand-crafted gifts, then likewise, it only stands to reason, they must not appreciate us. And therefore, we can erase their names from our Christmas Gift List next year. This may prove difficult when your own 7-year-old cries on Christmas morning, because all you gave him was a jar covered in gold-spray-painted macaroni. But if you set a trap, and put a mouse in that jar, your status will be instantly restored. (just remember to poke holes in the lid)
So check back here, all month-long, and get free ideas for plenty of cheap, hand-crafted crap to give your family for Christmas this year. Most won’t require any expense whatsoever, and quite often, no wrapping, either. Mostly because it’s hard to gift wrap a gold tree branch, or a used trash can, decorated with your own personal holiday graffiti. But Remember, It’s the thought that counts. And, you thought, “Hey! I think I’ll save a whole buncha money this year! I’ll give poopy gifts to all!”