Now that you have your Christmas card list all in order, it’s time to tackle that gift list!
Before I get to the gifts themselves, I like to make a list of everyone I’m going to be buying gifts for…with a budget for each person. Our Christmas situation is a little unusual in the fact that we don’t actually buy gifts for many people at all. Years ago, I chatted with several people in my life, and we all decided that exchanging gifts wasn’t a thing we needed to do…instead we would get together for dessert and coffee and enjoy each other’s company. Over the years, that tradition has changed a bit with various people, but we still skip the gift exchanging. This has helped cut down on the number of people I buy gifts for quite a bit! (And increases the time I get to spend with people I love.) 🙂 But there are still people who I do gift buying for, and I like to make a list of all the names as my very step in gift planning.
So, here are some people who you may need to consider when making your list:
- Family – Of course there are any of those nifty people who live in the same house as you, but don’t forget any gift exchanging you do with other family.
- Coworkers/members of groups you belong to
- Your kids’ friends/classmates
- Those people who quietly make your life awesome – mail delivery people, piano teachers, guidance counselors at your kid’s school, unicorn wranglers…those sort of fabulous people
- Charitable gifts – If you select an angel from an angel tree or “adopt” a family or anything of that nature, definitely include them on your list!
Now that you have your list of people, start listing those present ideas for each person…keeping your budget in mind, of course!
When I’m making my list, I sometimes skip the specifics and list a store instead, but only if there’s a store that the person in question adores. For example, I know I can always find things that my husband will adore at the Grand Asia Market in a nearby town, so I’ll just list the store with a budget amount. This strategy may work for you if you’re having trouble thinking of something specific for someone.
Another alternative to consider for those awesome people who prowl around in the same house as you is having a “stocking only” Christmas. We’ve done this for the past couple of years, and it has worked out really well! All of our gifts fit in our stockings, and we take turns grabbing gifts from our giant socks and oohing and ahhing over them. 😀 (It means we spend zero money or time on gift wrapping for our Christmas morning fun…and the size of the stocking itself keeps us from getting too crazy with buying presents!)
However you choose to handle the gift giving fun, make sure that you have your list all complete and tidy…it helps so much in avoiding weird and uncomfortable situations where people get forgotten. (Because weird and uncomfortable situations are bad…especially if you’re already a pretty socially awkward person such as myself.) 😉
A nice way to deal with future Christmas gift lists is to start a new list at New Year’s (I suggest a digital style one that’s easy to modify and update) and keep it updated with great gift ideas for each person. When a loved one mentions that they’d love a pair of light-up flamingo slippers, you’ll be ready to make a note of that mess! 😀
Making a Christmas list is pretty simple stuff (and possibly not even worthy of it’s very own post), but it is super-important for staying organized and calm and on-budget…and for keeping your Christmas ninja status!
Looking for one spot for all of the Christmas posts from Ms. Emily’s Home for Full-Grown Nerds? I have a page for that!
What about you? Do you keep a list all year for gift ideas or make one right around now or fly by the seat of your pants with gift giving? Have you ever had a horrible experience with forgetting to buy a gift for someone? (If so, I’m ever-so-sorry!) Do you skip gift giving completely?