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Old 12-02-2012, 06:46 PM   #1
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Related to holiday giving

I wish I could find a way to reduce our gift list without hurting feelings. We enjoy and expect to get things for grandchildren, but we have friends, cousins and neighbors who always give us gifts and we feel we have to give back. For neighbors, I can bake something, but with the others, they send gifts in the $50 range. We would really like to stop, but don't know the best way. Suggestions?
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Old 12-02-2012, 06:54 PM   #2
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For older siblings, cousins etc we do a relative name draw. That way you only have to get/give one gift.
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Old 12-02-2012, 07:03 PM   #3
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Simply tell them you cannot afford it anymore.
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Old 12-02-2012, 07:11 PM   #4
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Years ago I just stopped giving, explained my reasons for not wanting to exchange presents, and asked everyone not to send me presents. It helped that (at the time) I was poor. I emphasized that it wasn't just them, and everyone I knew was getting the same message from me about it. The only person I exchange presents with is my daughter. Most took it very well and some said they had wanted to do the same thing for a long time but were afraid to. Others send me a present occasionally but do not expect one in return.

Sure makes the Christmas season a lot less stressful for me.
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Old 12-02-2012, 07:13 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Ally
I wish I could find a way to reduce our gift list without hurting feelings. We enjoy and expect to get things for grandchildren, but we have friends, cousins and neighbors who always give us gifts and we feel we have to give back. For neighbors, I can bake something, but with the others, they send gifts in the $50 range. We would really like to stop, but don't know the best way. Suggestions?
It is probably too late to gracefully stop now for this year, but bring it up just after the first of the year. They might all feel the same way.
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Old 12-02-2012, 08:01 PM   #6
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Last year during Thanksgiving, my son's in-laws annouced that they do not need/want any gifts for Christmas. DW and I blurted the same thing. So we all decided that there will be no Christmas gift giving. For adult recipients only. The grandkids will still have their gifts. This last Thanksgiving, we reiterated the same policy.

We also have our friends that meet every Christmas. Last year, we decided to bring just one gift each and then each one draws one gift. We are following through this year.

We have a friend who sent us an e-mail that said the they do not want any gifts but also said that he already bought gifts for some people. I took that as a good hint and answered him that we also don't want any gifts.

I would say that these have cut down our Christmas gift budget.
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Old 12-02-2012, 08:11 PM   #7
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We have winnowed down over the years as well. For my and DW's siblings we drew names years ago and just follow a progression (I had the second youngest last year and have the youngest this year and will have the oldest next year, second oldest the year after, et al).
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Old 12-02-2012, 08:22 PM   #8
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We would really like to stop, but don't know the best way. Suggestions?
The best way is to broach the subject before the holidays . I have been exchanging gifts with my sister even though we both need nothing . This year I asked her if instead of gifts we could meet half way( we live three hours apart ) for a nice early dinner . I think it will be so much nicer than token gifts.
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Old 12-02-2012, 08:25 PM   #9
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Thank you! I like the idea of emphasizing that we don't need or want more gifts and letting people know in the new year. If we could keep giving to the children and grandchildren, it would cut the gifts in half. It would also cut the stress in half!
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Old 12-02-2012, 09:11 PM   #10
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We did this, and it was not easy. We just felt the gift giving had fallen into a routine and didn't make much sense. One year we sent a note to everyone - they all saw each other on the distribution list - that for that year, instead of gifts, we were donating our gift budget to the needy and asked them to do likewise. The following year we just asked for no gifts. It seems they had similar thoughts because the exchange of gifts fell pretty substantially after that. Since then, close family member gift giving has been limited to inviting each other out to dinner - something we were already doing. "Gifts" have now been limited to our kids and their kids.
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Old 12-02-2012, 11:05 PM   #11
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We told friends and relatives that for us (DH and I), Christmas was all year round as we were able to buy the things we need and want. In addition, we felt Christmas was a time for children, so the giving would not stop while they were young.

Everyone seemed happy and relieved. It worked out well.
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Old 12-03-2012, 05:35 AM   #12
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We have had the similar experience. Everyone pretty much wanted to stop but until someone broaches the subject it continues more out of tradition inertia. When it does come everyone is relieved.

So now the gift-giving is for children only.
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