18 answers

Family Christmas Gift Exchange Ideas

Hi Moms,
Looking for ideas for alternative to a Christmas Gift Exchange. My husbands parents are divorced, so in the last couple of years, we have been drawing names for a party with Mom, and a party with Dad. Because of the two parties, it means we have a total of 4 presents to buy. His siblings have set the price range at $100, and I think it might be more meaningful to do something else this year. Typically, we end up spending $400 for the adults, and another $100 on children's presents for each party... A price tag for family at $500-$600 seems a bit much to me!!!

Thanks for your ideas!!

(The reason we are thinking so far ahead, is that most of the family has a vacation planned in the next month, and it is nice to have the option to shop somewhere besides AK! Our options are limited, so its nice to look at stores we dont have up here!)

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

We only buy presents for the kids and the adults do a fun "White Elephant Game" with either real gifts (limit of $25) or a gift you've received that is in new condition that you wrap up as a 'white elephant" gift. The game itself is a lot of fun...let me know if you need the rules. Christmas is for kids anyway!

1 mom found this helpful

Well you could do the same thing pick names, but don't but a price range. It shouldn't be about the price it's all about the thought. Especially now a days it's much harder. If you hit good sales and places like Ross/TJ Max you will find name brands for less. Macy's has great sales if coupons and their discount racks. Good luck.

1 mom found this helpful

More Answers

wow a hundred bucks sounds like so much! probably not up your family's alley, but one year we did a "homemade" christmas for our extended family. aunts, uncles, cousins, we all did something homemade and brought enough for everyone. there was everything from candies to jellies to homemade bread, to crafty stuff...the possibilities were endless. i got some cool hand made christmas decorations.

2 moms found this helpful

We do a blind gift exchange for the adults. We spend between 20 - 40 on something cool, wrap it and put it on the pool table, then we draw numbers and open presents. If you really like someone elses, you can steal it before you open one, and an item can only be stolen twice. If your present is stolen, you can open a new one or steal one. It's super fun! And we usually end up with something cool we wouldnt have gotten or thought of, like a last year we got a little coleman lamp and a temp/rainwater guage. The lamp came in handy one night when our power went out. It is always fun, although occasionally the under 21s will open a gift that's alcohol, but it's always stolen or their parents make them trade it with them at the end. :-)

1 mom found this helpful

If this is too much money for your family to be spending then I would just bite the bullet and speak up!! Everyone is having to cut corners in todays economy and my bet is that some one else in the family is thinking the same thing and is just not brave enough to speak up and say something.
Maybe you could suggest buying as a couple for another couple...that would cut the presents in half.
Christmas gift, or gifts for any other occassion should never be a burden or an obligation...they should be done out of love and the joy of giving the gift. Maybe you could come up with something that you could make...a craft or a home made gift of some sort and that could be your gift to everyone at the party. You could preface it with...."This year we decided to have a handmade Christmas and I wanted to include all of you ....I Hope you get as much joy out of our gift as we got out of making it for you".
Last year we all made home made ornaments, each family made enough to exchange with each other family unit....it was SUCH a hit!!! I am hoping in a few years that I can have enough home made ornaments to completely decorate my tree with them!!!
Don't let Christmas stress you out....relax....and be practical and honest with yourself and with your family about what you can afford to do.

1 mom found this helpful

We only buy presents for the kids and the adults do a fun "White Elephant Game" with either real gifts (limit of $25) or a gift you've received that is in new condition that you wrap up as a 'white elephant" gift. The game itself is a lot of fun...let me know if you need the rules. Christmas is for kids anyway!

1 mom found this helpful

Well you could do the same thing pick names, but don't but a price range. It shouldn't be about the price it's all about the thought. Especially now a days it's much harder. If you hit good sales and places like Ross/TJ Max you will find name brands for less. Macy's has great sales if coupons and their discount racks. Good luck.

1 mom found this helpful

Wow! Our family limit is 20.00. You guys are very generous! Our grandparents/parents have asked that nothing is brought for them - and they mean it. They say holidays are for the kids - in our case adult children/siblings and the children. We don't exchange gifts w/ everyone - it is bring one female/male gift depending on your gender. The adults do the trading thing but children don't.

1 mom found this helpful

White elephant? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_elephant_gift_exchange

It will change the party from a $$$ figure to fun.

I have been doing hitorical and financial research for the last 4 years and America is in the EYE, (the strange calm) of a storm and people don't even know it. The hard times we have been going through will seem petty compared to what is coming. We are not out of the depression-we are just entering the Beginning of it! The next year will be harder, and the following year really, really tough, 2012-2016 is going to be an absolute * shocker* for everyone. Hyperinflation is immenent. I mean, $10.00 or 20.00 a gallon for gas but still rising above that... as inflation keeps soaring. Food will be holy-cow- expensive- if you can even get it. The weird weather storms and patterns we have experienced this year and last year is creating food shortages all over the world. Since we are one of the PRIME exporters of grain , corn, and soy, you can bet we will eventually feel it like many foreign countries currently are. The TV media is not reporting the truth about the massive global food shortage that will come our way and hit people like a tidal wave. Take a moment to type in "global food crisis" on a search engine and see what pops up. Also "devaluation of the dollar" is another good one. America claimed emergency status all over the states this year , and last fall, because of all the rain- absolutely mutilating the crops.

I think it is wise of you cut the corners now and save that money.
Here is just 2 links:
http://www.marketskeptics.com/2009/02/2009-global-food-ca...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Food_crisis

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