Thursday, December 11, 2008

A Holiday Gift Wrapped With Thought and Thrift

Rather than spend hundreds of dollars on gifts, my friend's family has a money-saving holiday ritual that produces thoughtful presents with minimal cost. My friend selected her sister's name from a hat as part of a Secret Santa gift exchange for the adults in their immediate family.

The sister -- a mother with two young children -- really loves Yoga, but has not been able to find a class near her home. As a holiday gift, my friend tracked down an affordable series of Yoga classes offered by a studio near her sister's home. In addition, to purchasing a gift certificate for a few sessions, she also bought a Yoga mat for her sister.

Next, she created a large poster featuring the gift certificate and rolled the poster into the mat. The entire gift cost $40 to $50.

When she told me about Yoga gift package, I was impressed with the amount of thought and effort used to put together a creative holiday gift. What's more, she picked out a present that will really mean something to her sister. It's a gift that will definitely be used and appreciated.

She could afford to spend the time and attention on a single gift because the Secret Santa gift exchange ritual eliminated the need to buy presents for every family member.

Here's how the system works:

1. Settle on a Price Tag: My friend's family, for example, set a price limit of $40 to $50 per gift. They wanted a price target that was high enough to purchase a substantial gift, but low enough to avoid a financial hardship for the Secret Santa participants.

2. Hold a drawing: Every adult in the family entered their name into a hat and selected a name from the drawing.

3. Shop and exchange: Wrapped gifts are exchanged at a designated time and place. A potluck holiday party provides an ideal time for a gift exchange.

1 comment:

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