Instead of buying something, offer to do something for someone that they either can’t do themselves or don’t have time to get around to doing. Actually, that may be more appreciated than a wrapped present.
There is a wide open field of ideas connected to gifts of time or service . You can make your own list of ideas for the people you know.
Give a ‘coupon’ of what you will do as a gift inside of a Christmas card…a homemade Christmas card can be created if it is a child giving the gift.
Some age-specific or geographical-specific ideas are:
- mowing the lawn
- shoveling snow
- cleaning a flower bed
- preparing a flower or vegetable bed for planting in the spring
- cleaning out and organizing a shed, closet, garage, work space
- cleaning out and wiping down shelves, cabinets
- reading with a child on a regular basis
- teaching a skill, such as breadmaking, to someone
- teaching grandparents a computer skill or phone skill they need to know
- polishing a grandfather’s boots or shoes
- catching up someone’s sewing repairs…sewing on buttons, hemming clothing, ironing
- committing to taking out trash on a regular basis
- give someone a ride to church
There are all sorts of one-time or year-round or monthly gift ideas, tailored to what you know would be useful in any given situation.
Sometimes simply buying something is the easy way out of gift giving. There can be no heart, no thought, nothing other than empty obligation when you rush into a sales aisle simply looking for something to buy.
A gift of time and service might be more useful and more appreciated.
For the home schoolers in your life, or that you know, pass on used reading books or curriculums or even school supplies that you may no longer need. Take some cleaning wipes, spiff things up a little, put them in a basket with a ribbon.
A present does not have to be bright and shining new to be valuable. You can actually find some good buys on children’s books in thrift stores or garage or estate or library sales. Clean the books up carefully with cleaning wipes or some damp paper towels and you can have some fine gifts to give.
Some people want “new and shiny” and want only the most expensive book, but other people would rather get five or ten quality used books for the same amount of money.
A new car is used the moment it is driven out of the lot. Does that make it less valuable?
Some of the impositions of standards put on us by the world are put there by the marketers who stand to make money when you buy new trinkets, when really, something older might be better.
Antiques are considered valuable.
There are older, used books that are valuable as well.
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