Do the holidays give you a sense of dread? Do you tense up because of the expense, difficulty of deciding what to buy for so many, or because you’re just so overwhelmed you don’t have the energy to shop? These are just a few things that I heard when discussing gift giving with several women during a recent workshop on how to redefine the holidays. Whether you’re in the last days or just starting your holiday to-do list—Today, all that changes!
Stop whatever you’re doing. Take a breath....
Now, imagine for a moment that you’re committed to making a new choice… a new decision about how you approach holiday gift-giving. Let’s re-label December’s festivities as: fun, easy, relaxing, peaceful, joyful, comfortable or dare we say, luxurious? Here are a few ideas that will ease your efforts before during and after the holidays.
Six Ideas for Joyful Gift Giving
1. Christmas ALL YEAR LONG— Kids, friends, and parents can always use a little something to cheer them up. Why not give a small gift several times throughout the year?
2. Handwritten note- Text messages, Facebook likes, and emails are nice but a handwritten note is ‘special’. Take time to write down what you love and appreciate about your special someone. A beautiful blank card or stationary makes it lovely and loving.
3. Group outing—Siblings, in-laws, cousins, aunts, uncles, and grandparents can add up to a lot of money and time spent on gifts during the holiday. Years ago, our family decided to invite our loved ones to a group event that happens within the holiday, but after Christmas.
Past outings included:
Picnic in the park
4. Gift card exchange—Collect various gift cards (i.e. Chick-fil-a, Starbucks, Target, H-E-B…) in the same denomination; we load each card with $5. Place cards in a bag and have participants blindly choose a card. After all the cards have been picked the fun begins, ...everyone can trade, buy or negotiate for the card or cards that they want most.
5. Seed packets—Giving herb, veggie, and flower seeds are a fantastic way to ensure that your gift is remembered long after December. Perhaps the receiver will even think of you when it’s time to harvest?! (Parsley, anyone?)
6. Anticipation—Placing a small gift or note in an enveloped marked “do not open until (insert date in the future)” builds excitement long after the holiday has ended.
With a few fresh ideas, a shift in our thinking, and some planning, you can give a gift that is perfect for you and the receiver. Your loved ones will know how much they mean to you through these easy and fun approaches. And isn’t that what the holidays are all about?