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Jude's avatar

As far as gift giving for the holidays, do you all spend a lot, shop for only a few, or not buy any gifts atall?

Asked by Jude (31993 points ) November 22nd, 2010

I am cutting back this year. I will buy for my one niece, and my girlfriend and I are going in on something together, for each other. Family and friends get cards (with some, booze!).

I used to buy a whole lot more.

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23 Answers

marinelife's avatar

I tend to buy for my immediate family and my husband’s immediate family, but the size of the gifts has been cut down.

JilltheTooth's avatar

I buy happily for my daughter and a few friends, and grudgingly for some family members in order to keep some tenuous peace. I love the season, though, so it’s never an ordeal.

Summum's avatar

Circumstances this year keep us from buying a lot of Christmas but I think we will enjoy it even more because we are less commercial this year. I hope this catches on and becomes the normal.

Scooby's avatar

I’m all over the place visiting this year, so it’ll be a case of spend, spend, spend …… especially for the family & friends I rarely get to see, who are coming back up North for the Holidays… :-/

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

Well, I splurge for gifts for my SO, my best friend and my two kids. The rest of my family (mom, aunt, grandma) get small gifts for New Year’s. That’s all.

Coloma's avatar

I was married for 21 years and now divorced for almost 8.

One of the greatest things is I no longer have 18 people to stress about shopping for!

I now only buy for my daughter, her boyfriend and a couple of friends and thats it!

From 18 to 4 or 5!
Simplicity rocks!

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

We do some gifts for the immediate family but that’s about it.

jonsblond's avatar

We can only afford gifts for our children. Everyone else gets baked goodies.

muppetish's avatar

This is my first year employed so I have never spent much on holiday gifts. Last year, I gave my best friend a journal I filled with stories, quotations, and (extremely rough) sketches. I’m probably going to do something along the same longs for him this year. I’m also plotting something for two close friends of mine (but I’ll have to move into fifth gear to get those finished.) I do spend a bit more on my brothers and parents, though.

Every year my parents tell my siblings and I “we can’t afford to spend a lot this year” and then end up spoiling us anyway. I’ve been asking for gifts that cost less and less as a result.

J0E's avatar

Every year I get gifts from my parents, grandparents, and then a couple others when we draw names. I buy gifts for my parents, and whoever’s name I draw. So I guess I’m making a present profit.

wundayatta's avatar

The kids… a book or two for my parents…. some kind of food item for my brother, unless he has something specific on his list… usually nothing for my sister who lives overseas and may not even show up.

My wife… usually something she has asked for and a surprise thing. I like to give her fancy stuff, but I’m not sure she approves. This woman is about the most practical woman on the planet. For her birthday, she asked for a new toilet! But I showed her! I got another new toilet for our other bathroom, and even though it was way past my birthday, we said it was my birthday present, since she hadn’t given me anything.

Seaofclouds's avatar

We buy for our son, nieces (we don’t have any nephews yet) and our cousins that are children. Then we draw names with the adults in my immediate family and buy only for the person whose name we drew. We use to draw names with the adults in my husband’s immediate family as well, but we stopped doing that last year, and instead we (me, my husband, and his siblings) buy a joint gift for their parents.

I buy a small gift for my friend’s children and then bake goodies (cookies, brownies, fudge, etc) and put them in nice containers for all of my close friends.

How much we spend varies a bit, but we try to keep to a budget. Obviously our son gets the most.

As far as buying for each other, so far we’ve always done joint Christmas shopping for each other were we pretty much just go shopping together and pick things out we both like/want. Our focus is pretty much on everyone else for Christmas.

AmWiser's avatar

I stopped participating in the retailer’s holiday years ago. Why should their greed stress me out? I don’t buy at this time of year as I am a giver all year and if that is not appreciated, then oh well.

WillWorkForChocolate's avatar

My hubby and I concentrate on our kids. They usually get a 4 or 5 gifts each, with 1 really special “Santa gift”. We spend a small, equal amount on his parents and mine, and we buy something little for our grandmothers. That’s about it. Typically we do wind up getting something for each other, but things are so tight this year that we’re keeping it $25 or less. Like a CD or something…

MissAusten's avatar

My husband and I buy gifts for immediate family. Including our kids, that’s 12 people. We also exchange gift baskets with an uncle’s family and a great aunt. A good amount of what I put into their baskets is homemade treats. We also have a relative by marriage who doesn’t have other family and spends holidays with us. I give him a tin of goodies (usually cookies and my infamously addictive caramel corn). What we give each other varies from year to year and just depends on what’s left in the budget after giving to everyone else. My husband and I fill each others stockings and give each other a few other gifts. Nothing extravagant.

As for how much we spend, whether it’s a little or a lot depends on your perspective. We spend more on the kids, because Christmas is really more about them. We don’t buy things for them the rest of the year (except birthdays) so Christmas is kind of a big deal. For the rest of the family, we spend about $30 a person. To some people we would be spending a lot, and to others, not so much.

Kardamom's avatar

At the family Xmas party we each get one gift for under $25 and then we do the drawing/exchange/arguing/grabbing/trading. It’s always a lot of fun. With the gift, you also provide a hint gift of less than a dollar so the first person to draw chooses one of the hint gifts and opens it and tries to figure out if the gift itself is something they might like. The hints are ususally silly things that are not very obvious about what the actual gift is. For example the gift itself was a gift certificate for See’s candy and the hint gift was a pair of reading glasses.

We always have a potluck meal at the Xmas party and all of my relatives are really nice and funny and there’s no curmudgeons involved. I’m lucky that way so the best present of all is just getting together with these folks and laughing and looking at pictures and eating. This year we’re also having a hideous Xmas sweater contest (they had to be something you got for free or very cheaply at the thrift store). We’re all about cost consciousness due to the economy and the fact that several of the relatives are unemployed.

All of the little kids get a present from all of the adults. They’re pretty satisfied with stickers, chocolate santas, matchbox cars and other inexpensvie items because they’re all under age 6.

Then my immediate family and I exchange gifts with each other: usually books or movie tix or a restaurant certificate that we can use together, or this year we are “splurging” on a DVD recorder.

Several of my closest friends will most likely get baked goods made by me.

Kardamom's avatar

@wundayatta My mom has a new toilet that been sitting in the box for the last three years. Due to health issues suffered by my dad and other family members during this time (don’t worry everybody’s fine) the toilet never got installed. That would be my mom’s favorite gift of all time to have that toilet put in. Ha ha. Last year we got a new vacuum cleaner and she was thrilled.

wundayatta's avatar

@Kardamom LOL!

Were you guys planning on putting it in yourselves? We hired a plumber. We don’t have time for that. The toilets are really low flo, and they seem to be putting a significant dent in our water consumption. Now, on to low flow shower heads…... Ick! Unless they can make it feel like you’ve got lots of water on you.

Just so you know, it’s not on my wish list!

Kardamom's avatar

@wundayatta Yes, my dad was going to put it in himself. But now that he’s had heart surgery, he really can’t do it. Either my cousins will eventually do it or they will relent and let a plumber do it. We’ve never had very good luck with service contractors so my dad has always done everything himslef. And so the toilet sits in it’s box and is used as a table for magazines. Ha ha.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

It’s completely dependent on my budget. I have few relatives anymore to shop for and only a few of them even want gifts. I like to make notes all year long of what people let on they like/want and then if I can swing it, hurrah. Mostly I like to gift things people always tell themselves they can do without or can’t justify the cost on.

BarnacleBill's avatar

I found I save a lot of money by buying one big gift each for the kids and my niece. We have a very small family, so I only have about 7 people to buy for, and a handful of friends. I think people are relieved when they don’t have to exchange gifts with you. My brother and sister and I stopped exchanging gifts a few Christmases ago, and instead buy ourselves something nice with the money, that we would otherwise pass on. (Like last year, my sister bought herself a coffeemaker that uses pods and my brother went to Vegas for a weekend, guilt free about the hotel and airfare.) What we do, however, is text message eachother with gifts we would buy the other person if we were exchanging gifts, and sometimes send a link to the item. It can be pretty funny when you get a link that’s some obscure item, with no explanation.

YARNLADY's avatar

I send handmade cards to most of the family. My sons and grandkids get presents, and it’s usually about $100 each, except for the toddlers, and I spend around $50 on them.

SamIAm's avatar

Even though I have a job this year, I’m cutting back too. Still getting two of my closest girlfriends gifts (but small… I usually make them something (a journal, or picture frame for example) but this year it’s fun socks, a fun pen and a funky little notebook – totaling about 15/person); a third friend is getting slippers; mom is getting a gift under 50, same for dad and dad’s girlfriend. And my sister and I aren’t talking (plus, I can’t remember the last time she got me something) so I’m not wasting my energy this year. Last year I bought her a $100 wallet that she probably never uses. Grandpa and his wife get cards, and I may make some candied pecans to give out to other friends with cute cards but we’ll see how festive I’m feeling! :)

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