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Old 11-28-2011, 03:29 PM   #21
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As of last week sent ~$5k to some organizations, ~$500 to individuals ~$150 in chocolate to a few folks (not family).

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Old 11-28-2011, 06:56 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by frayne View Post
DW and don't I buy anything for each other but I am thinking about getting her a Shark steam cleaning thingy she has been hinting about.
Be careful. One year (shortly after we got a pot to piss in) I gave DW a vacuum as a Christmas present and she was not happy. However, a few years later she said all she wanted for Christmas were 4 new studded tires mounted on wheels. Women - hard to figure them out.

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Old 11-28-2011, 08:36 PM   #23
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We don't spend on gifts between me & DW anymore. She has most thing and I have just about what I need and usually will buy during the year if we need it. There are some obligatory gifts.
$400 for people in the office.
$300 check to my dad.
$200 check to another old relatives.
For my daughter who is married and doing well, we'll just order a large
HOney bake ham which she like to eat for x-mass.
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Old 11-28-2011, 11:22 PM   #24
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Several years ago, my DW gave me a vacuum/scrubber Green machine for Christmas. I later gave her a lawn mower and snow blower of her very own. Mine was the better gift, I had the handles engraved "With ALL of my love". It is the little touches that make the gift special.

We have spent around fifteen hundred, so far. Ipad2 and snow blower for daughter and son in law. Over the top, but it feels nice to give and we can afford it. Tomorrow, I am looking at funding a Roth for a new grand daughter.
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Old 11-29-2011, 05:24 AM   #25
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I'm in the Humbug camp. Most gifts are in the neighborhood of $25-40.
Full time wuss............
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Old 11-29-2011, 07:56 AM   #26
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No gifting to adults. Small gifts to little children (ages 1 to 7) in the family.
For our own kids we use 3 gifts rule: "a need", "a want" and "a read".
I would say less than $250 spent on various gifts for 7 kids.
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Old 11-29-2011, 09:43 AM   #27
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Holy smokes, you folks with kids spend serious money! -Except you, Sailor!
We are spending every nickel on our month in Peru, so will probably pick up small gifts there for the 6 kids belonging to my sis and brother as well as something for our parents and DH's sister. Other than that, we'll probably find something small for our close friends while we are traveling, plus for the great people staying full time at our house while we're gone. Maybe $300 or so? Gotta fit in the backpacks!
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Old 11-29-2011, 10:15 AM   #28
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$1,000, most of that on my DW.
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Old 11-29-2011, 02:44 PM   #29
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You guys are an order of magnitude above our spending level.

The $500 for Lena's iPad 2 doesn't count because we would have gotten that anyway. It does make a good present, though.
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Old 11-29-2011, 03:07 PM   #30
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$75, split evenly between my parents and my twin sister. For at least the last decade we've restricted gift giving to immediate family only, and set a reasonable limit at $25 or so. I think it's awesome because I can get all of my shopping done in 5 minutes on Amazon. The hardest part is coming up with my "wishlist" as there's not a whole lot of stuff that I really want. This way the extended family can all enjoy each others' company at holiday gatherings without having to fret over buying each other gifts.
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Old 11-29-2011, 03:07 PM   #31
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About $3K total: $2500 sent to various charities, and about $500 worth of small gifts for numerous friends and family (usually wine, gift baskets, etc.).

I may splurge and buy my wife a new laptop (~$500), but I'm still debating this. Her current machine is 11 years old and VERY slow.
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Old 11-29-2011, 05:09 PM   #32
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For our trek to MA for Christmas, travel, eating out and dog boarding costs will come in around $300, which Mr B and I will split 50-50.
We agreed on only 1 small present for each of us, from each other.

I just shelled out a lot of money for a fence and chimney repair, so I am doing homemade bread and cookies as presents for his family and my local friends. I have all the ingredients on hand except extra butter.
He will probably spend more on his relatives because it is expected of him.

We have $300 in cashback rewards for 2011, some of which we will spend for a nice dinner out, just us two, after January 1st. The remainder will be saved for another treat.
"All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them." - Walt Disney
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Old 11-29-2011, 07:48 PM   #33
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Ooooohhhh....I want the Shark steam machine! I am not sure....probably around $500 for my Mom, Dad, my brother and sis-in-law, my bf and his 2 boys, and the two kitty cats.
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Old 11-29-2011, 11:25 PM   #34
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Probably around $1500.

DH and I -- we give to each other with a limit of about $200 to $250. Often we end up giving a gift card to somewhere we like (yes, this is fun for us) although sometime we will ask for something specific. We also do stockings and we pick up small fun things for the stock

3 kids -- In past years we've spent roughly $200 per kid plus stocking stuffers. This year is the first year that our oldest son is on his own. I've always had the thought when kids left the nest entirely that they would still get gifts but smaller gifts. In oldest son's case he also borrowed $500 from us a few months ago and hasn't lived up to his repayment agreement. We will still get him something for Christmas, but it will probably be less than it would have been when we were still supporting him.

My two mothers -- I am making a photo calendar for each of them. One of them collects the Holiday Barbie so I will buy for her.

Rest of the money we spend are non-gift spending that is Christmas related.

When DH and I married 20 years ago he had 3 adult children and several grandchildren. One of the things we had to work out was each others very different family traditions on gift giving. I'm an only child and my parents were always big on gifts. Even as an adult they would spend several hundred dollars on my present and I would buy them nice presents. They could do that because it was just me. DH on the other hand came from a large family and his parents had many grandchildren. They typically gave very modest gifts (I was fine with that). DH and I for awhile tried to do gifts with all of his kids and his grandchildren. We found that none of them were all that gift-centered and it annoyed both of us when he would give gifts that were not reciprocated. So, after a few years that gift giving basically stopped. We don't give to them and they don't give to us. I personally would rather do gifts but DH and them are fine with not doing it so that is OK with me. But, my kids have been raised to enjoy giving and receiving gifts.
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Old 11-30-2011, 06:13 AM   #35
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"The entire institution of gift giving make no sense. Let's say that I go out, and I spend 50 dollars on you, it's a laborious activity, because I have to imagine what you need, where as you know what you need. Now I could simplify things, just give you the 50 dollars directly, and you could give me 50 dollars on my birthday, and so on, until one of us dies, leaving the other one old and 50 dollars richer. And I ask, is it worth it?"
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Old 11-30-2011, 06:18 AM   #36
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Probably too much. Somewhere in the $4k to $5K range. I bought my husband an expensive suit to wear to our daughters wedding next May. He did an equal amount for me (of course I picked it out). Three adult children and 1 future son-in-law. Donations...etc. It adds up.
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Old 11-30-2011, 06:42 AM   #37
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Let's see $700 per child = $1400
About $500 for extended family
and about $1000 for wife and myself! = $2900 total (call it $3000)
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Old 11-30-2011, 08:09 AM   #38
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Let's see...

$300 or so in cash gifts for extended family in need (the holidays are a good time to help without weirdness)

$700 for my contribution to the vacation house we are renting

$250 gas and tolls (normally buy an airline ticket for around the same amount)

$50 donation for community decorations

$100 donation to local food bank to provide holiday meals for those in need

So ~$1400. That's about the same as most years, but distributed very differently.

According to this article on, the average is $690, with $394 going to gifts for family, $71 on gifts for friends, $86 on food, $42 on decorations and the rest to miscellaneous spending. They haven't included travel, which is usually the largest single line item for me.
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Old 11-30-2011, 09:38 AM   #39
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Might buy a mountain bike -- for me.
Gee ... who got that cool bike under the tree.

Now for the lower priority things:

DW gets a light weight pochad box for outdoor landscape painting.

DS gets a check so he can get some sort of smartphone. He can do the research and pay the month-to-month.
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Old 11-30-2011, 12:48 PM   #40
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For the guy that wants to open a Roth for a new grandbaby-you do know the kid has to have earned income to do that-right? Maybe you meant a college fund- 529.

I will spend about $600+750 in gifts. My sister and I usually shop together and pick out our own gifts .Less stress and a fun day out. They still get wrapped.
I do a gift card for my BIL. Boring but effective. I'll probably give $400 to my niece and her two grown kids. More then I really want to spend.

I don't count charity as part of my Christmas costs, although I do like to take a donation tree star or two. I don't like the state of philanthropy in America.

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