Thinking about not exchanging gifts this year..

Discussion in 'Community Board' started by Oliviaxxx, Nov 4, 2018.

  1. Oliviaxxx

    Oliviaxxx Mouseketeer

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    We are thinking about not exchanging gifts this year with extended family.

    We spend Christmas Eve. with my cousins and Aunts and Uncles. We have no more living grandparents on this side of the family. Christmas eve consists of my aunt who has no children, an uncle who has no children, my aunt, and uncle who are married and have 5 kids, my parents and my brother and I. All of us "kids" are between 17-25. There are no other children at this time. We all exchange gifts on Christmas Eve. My parents, brother and I all give gifts that are from all of us. So our family of four provided gifts for 9 people. My family and I are thinking that we suggest we no longer exchange. None of us are kids anymore. We are all grown and we don't need anything. We just buy things now because we need to buy something to give. All the gifts we exchange are non-personal, soaps, gloves, and mugs.
    We all love each other dearly but it has become clear the last few years that we all just pick up cheap generic gifts to give one another. So we want to suggest our idea to the rest of the family. Do you think we are wrong? We aren't trying to look like scrooges.
     
  2. luvsJack

    luvsJack DIS Veteran

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    I don’t think you look like Scrooges at all!

    There is so much more you can do in the holiday season when your focus isn’t on gifts. And actually look forward and and enjoy family gatherings rather than it being a chore because you got to pick up that one more coffe cup or bottle of bath oil.

    I still buy for my kids and grandkids but have suggested they stop buying for each other. We don’t exchange with my or dh’s Siblings either.
     
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  4. tvguy

    tvguy Question anything the facts don't support.

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    Sounds reasonable to me.
    My kids are 27 and 31. Shopping for them is a pain as is providing them with a list of gift ideas for me. We usually exchange a few token gifts, but both kids and my DIL get a cash gift. DS and DDIL have car payments and a house payment and other housing needs so they can apply the cash to the exact thing the really want or need. DD has a car payment, and I might buy her something for her car (like a spare tire, who knew that many cars don't come with them anymore! The well is there in the trunk but it has a battery powered air pump and a can of tire sealant only. A lot of good that will do you if you blow a tire!).
     
  5. dreamer17555

    dreamer17555 DIS Veteran

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    Maybe suggest a gift exchange where each person buys for one person. That way it is still the fun of gift giving but at a lower cost.
     
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  6. gillep

    gillep DIS Veteran

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    I don’t think you are wrong at all. We suggested the same thing this year but it did not go over well. Some people put more importance on gifts than others, and I clearly have a different opinion of them than my in laws (gifts are not my love language by a long shot). It is just difficult because we have to spend a lot of money to travel to see family, and then purchasing gifts for adults that really don’t need anything really adds up. I wish we could just spend time together and have that be enough for everyone but we need to compromise so that everyone is at least somewhat happy.
     
  7. Oliviaxxx

    Oliviaxxx Mouseketeer

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    Thanks, everyone for the replies. It was one thing when our grandparents were alive and wanted to give gifts to their grandchildren but they have both been gone for a few years. Thinking of what to give 9 adults every year is so difficult. None of us have the need to open a bunch of gifts anymore. It isn't the focus like it was when we were little.

    I think the idea of either doing a secret Santa, drawing the names on Thanksgiving, or a grab bag could be fun.
     
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  8. Disneyluvr

    Disneyluvr DIS Veteran

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    You could also suggest that everyone buy one small gag type gift and play one of the many gift games that are out there. My extended family started doing this several years ago and it’s a big hit each year. We put a $10 limit and buy wacky things, really cool gadgets, lottery tickets, whatever.
     
  9. Oliviaxxx

    Oliviaxxx Mouseketeer

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    I am in my early 20's now I just can't think of anything I absolutely need. I find it hard to even come up with things to ask for! Car accessories are a good idea. Last year my mom got me these organizers that go between the front seats and the middle console. They have been the best gift yet. It holds my phone, wallet, sunglasses. No more things falling down between the seats.
     
  10. tvguy

    tvguy Question anything the facts don't support.

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    Christmas is really all about kids and Santa. Although I do look forward to Egg Nog, Fruit Cake and Mince Meat pie.
     
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  11. Oliviaxxx

    Oliviaxxx Mouseketeer

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    We are afraid our idea will cause an issue. My aunt and uncle are both not married and have no children. I think they only buy gifts for us to give on Christmas Eve. and don't know if anyone but us gives them gifts. We have the same issue though, just buying for a bunch of adults who don't need anything. You can tell by the gifts we all give that no one is really putting much thought into what to buy. It's not like any of us are hunting for weeks for the perfect gifts to give each other. We all just buy something because we need to give and you can tell. When we get home we usually get a big bag out to put all our gifts in so we can donat them. We just don't need the extra stuff. We all could use the money for other things. We would much rather all put a little money in to have Christmas Eve. dinner catered so no one has to cook!
     
  12. Disneylover99

    Disneylover99 DIS Veteran

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    We gave up give exchange with extended family last year. Everyone agreed to it. It was awesome!
    It was so great to get together with everyone without the pressure of gift exchange. :)
     
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  13. TheDisneyNurse

    TheDisneyNurse DIS Veteran

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    Talk to your family about it and see what everyone wants to do.

    With my extended family, we do a gift exchange so every adult is only buying 1 gift (this is on top of the gifts that I buy for my immeadiate family— parents, siblings, brother in law and nephew). We usually play a white elephant game to exhange. Sometimes we do “secret santa” instead. My best friend and I have been exchanging gifts together since college. I will buy some little things for some of my friend’s kids that I babysit/play with.

    There’s really no right or wrong answer. We like exchanging gifts. We make games out of it, and it’s really entertaining. See what the family thinks and go from there.
     
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  14. moon

    moon DIS Veteran

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    Good luck with that. I tried it a couple of years ago. We're also all adults in our family and I thought exchanging gifts was just stressful and pointless, so it was agreed that there wouldn't be any gift giving. It made the season so relaxing!

    So, Christmas Eve arrives and we have dinner as usual. After the family left, we noticed a bag my BIL left behind. It contained Christmas gifts for us. Generic stuff we we didn't want, need, or ever used.

    I thought that was quite passive-aggressive on his part.
     
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  15. IMissEd

    IMissEd Stay patient and trust the journey

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    I don't know why BIL and family agreed if they weren't ok with it. Yes, very passive-aggressive on his part.

    I tried the same thing with my extended family and at first everyone agreed, but then we started getting messages about, "I just had to get this for so and so..." Oh well, it was a good try on my part. In the end, we all ended up buying the same amounts we always have.
    I have a good attitude about it, but it seems so silly sometimes to buy things we don't need.

    On the other hand, I know some younger family members are just starting out and feel obligated to buy all these gifts while I wish they would just save their money and spend it on themselves.
     
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  16. jenrose66

    jenrose66 DIS Veteran

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    I love the idea of no gifts! I pitch it every year. I have yet to be successful.
     
  17. morgan98

    morgan98 DIS Veteran

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    I think this is completely acceptable. Luckily, we do not have a huge family, but it is still ridiculous with everyone asking each other want they want, etc. All of us are fortunate enough to basically be able to buy what we want during the year, so it is crazy to try to come up with gift ideas. Now, I do like spoiling my mom and looking for things she will not splurge on for herself. But, other than that, I would rather just spend time with everyone and spend the money on good food and wine!
     
  18. luvsJack

    luvsJack DIS Veteran

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    The one aunt and uncle sort of makes it sticky, I can understand that. It’s hard to think of anyone not getting one Christmas gift. I would speak up and tell the rest of them I just can’t do it this year and not buy for anyone but those two. And perhaps spend a bit more for a nicer gift for them.
     
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  19. Southernmiss

    Southernmiss I am hazed everyday

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    The only gifts we do for adults are parents.

    We started dirty Santa last year for those 18 and older. About 16 of us. It was so much fun!
     
  20. antmaril

    antmaril DIS Veteran

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    My adult son (32 years old) and I spend Christmas Eve with my late husband’s brother, wife and 11 year old daughter. The adults have been exchanging gift cards every year and this year I suggested we stop doing that. My son and I will, of course, buy gifts for my 11 year old niece, but it just seems silly for the adults to exchange gift cards. My sister-in-law agreed. So, we are done with that.
     
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  21. LongLiveRafiki

    LongLiveRafiki DIS Veteran

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    The celebration we do with my grandparents, dad and step-mom, brother, aunt, uncle, and cousins, we all just mainly gift the kids (4 kids between 3-9). My cousins and us are the next youngest age group, but the youngest is turning 18. My grandparents do something for everyone, though we've been trying to get them to cut back and save some money. All the rest of us either don't exchange or give something small and homemade from the kids.

    Last year, we did a sock exchange amongst the adult women that was fun. Each bought a pair of crazy socks and filled it with whatever we wanted. I did a mix of practical and gag gifts, from a mini flashlight, pepper spray, small picture frame, fancy gum to an enema, slippers made out of feminine products, and the original iPad made from the same with a big googly eye. That was a blast.

    We also did a game for anyone who wanted to participate. Someone in the family bought a bunch of scratch off lottery tickets and some candy and wrapped them all throughout a giant ball of Saran wrap. We took turns rolling doubles with dice while the next person unwrapped. Whatever you unwrapped before doubles were rolled, you got to keep, and then it moved in the circle to the next player. Everyone ended up with a lottery ticket or some candy and it added some fun to the day.
     

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