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December 27th, 2011 at 02:30 pm

I am so out of sync with my family. What I think is a reasonable Christmas is just cheap to them (not that they said so -- they were all gracious -- but I saw all the other gifts! Whew!) I guess I just have to adjust. I felt pretty awful during the gift openings, so next year I will just have to make more sacrifices and pony up more money for Christmas.

Now that it's over, I can report what I bought (though I don't think anyone in the family reads my blog -- but I'm not 100% sure.)

I tried very hard to find good deals at Goodwill and at retail stores, too. Here is what I finished up with:

DS1: Bocce set, College shirt, prep bowls, turkey lifter (Goodwill). Ragg socks, ear buds, $50 gas card, $10 I-tunes card (retail). Stadium blanket (free, bank promo).

DIL1: Teapot, calligraphy wall hanging, double frame set, ornament (Goodwill). Figurines for Christmas village, extra wedding pictures, silky tote bag, hand cream, gingerbread village cookie sheet, egg timer (retail).

DS2: 3 t-shirts, book, card game (Goodwill). Ragg socks, ear buds, Brita water bottle, $25 Express card, $10 I-tunes card (retail). Stadium blanket (free, won in raffle).

DIL2: Ankle weights, custard cups, ornaments (Goodwill). Gingerbread village cookie sheet, silky tote bag, hand cream, Brita water bottle, kitchen wall clock, $25 fabric store gift card, egg timer (retail). (I also gave this couple a roll of quarters for laundry.)

GS1: Board game, two mugs, Bionic lego set (Goodwill). Board game, toothbrush (retail).

GS2: Ornament (Goodwill). Talking toy, wooden puzzle with sound effects, engine for Thomas train set, toothbrush (retail).

I will also pay for a special class/activity for the boys; DIL to let me know what. I went deliberately light on the grandsons' gift; they get so, so many, from so many people who have a lot more money than I have. I feel like it's so wasteful to just add to the plethora -- and they are clearly overwhelmed by too many gifts. So I just got a few things to open.

Nephew & wife: $75 grocery store gift card. (They are unemployed)

Grand-niece 1: Mini-frames, memo pad (Goodwill). $10 I-Tunes card.

Grand-nieces 2 & 3: Assorted costume jewelry, jacks game (Goodwill). Jewelry boxes (retail).

Grand-nephew: Bag of little toys (mostly Goodwill).

Ex-husband: Bottle of wine, also wrapped up and returned some Christmas ceramics his aunt had made.

DIL2's mother: Candleholder, salt & pepper (Goodwill). Candle (retail).

DIL1's parents: Two Christmas mugs (Goodwill). Bag of coffee, assorted fancy cocoa packets (retail).

DIL1's grandfather: stuffed toy (free with purchase of greeting cards)

For work people: 2 tins (Goodwill) filled with Hershey's Bliss. Hand cream (retail), Christmas tile (regift).

I was overwhelmed with so many people to buy for, some of whom I see only once a year.

Next year I will use the Amazon gift lists, even though it doesn't feel Christmas-y to me. This was too much work for too little satisfaction.

I didn't keep track of my Christmas spending, which was a mistake -- I should at least know how much I saved! That might make me feel better! I'm sure I spent much less than anyone else, but not sure right now whether that was a good thing.

Oh yes, I got many nice gifts, too.

Gift cards totalling $175.
Tool box & tools
Fluffy throw
Knee socks
Wall clock
Stock pot
Wedding pictures
Set of jams
Coffee, tea & mug
Yankee Candle
Stocking full of sample size items

I'm sure there is more, but I'm blank right now.

7 Responses to “Christmas”

  1. rob62521 Says:

    It seems like that Christmas has become a frenzy of one upping folks anymore. I wouldn't beat myself up. Your gifts were thought out and planned.

  2. ceejay74 Says:

    Agreed -- your gifts sound really nice. Everyone should give what they can without overextending -- my rich brother always got really expensive things for everyone, my poor sister would give us cheap or handmade items or baked treats. I never thought "Wow, my brother did so much better than my sister." To me both gifts gave me the exact same amount of pleasure. I'm sure the graciousness wasn't just skin-deep in your family's case either.

  3. Petunia 100 Says:

    It sounds to me as though you were very generous. I realize different families have different expectations. Personally, I wouldn't want any gift that was a hardship for the giver. I'll bet your family feels the same.

  4. wowitsawonderfullife Says:

    I think all of the gifts you gave were heartfelt and lovely. Well done.

  5. CCraw Says:

    The gifts you gave sound nice. I wouldn't do anything different than what you are doing. I think you did great!

  6. Ima saver Says:

    Wow, you have so many to buy for. I only buy for my husband. I send both of my granddaughters a check.(s)

  7. CB in the City Says:

    Aw, you guys are so sweet! But you are the only people I know who think like me. I wish I had frugal people in my real life!

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