Friday, October 17, 2014

create a sensible christmas list

It's probably not at all sensible for me to discuss Christmas but bear with me, it's for good reason.

You see, there's a lot to be said for considered gift giving and receiving. And if you're anything like me, you covet many things throughout the year but when it comes time to share your gift ideas with your family, you're at a loss for what to ask for.

There is also the significant chance that, when it comes to buying gifts for loved ones, you have the pressure of a Christmas deadline mixed with the overwhelm of commercials, catalogues and hectic shopping centres; it's not an inspiring situation, nor does it induce thoughtful buying or spending.

This year, however, is a little different. Sure, I'll be displaying a good waddle in the lead up to Christmas but greater than my desire to be organised is my intention to buy gifts with thought and consideration. I don't want to feel rushed or obliged. I want to gift meaningful presents that I know will be loved and used. With this in mind, I have been keeping a list and I add to it whenever an idea strikes. As a result, I know what every family member is receiving for Christmas and yes, I've already purchased quite a few items. Like most, I'm on a budget, so I find that buying months in advance saves me from nonchalant spending in the mad rush before the big day.

Whilst it won't be to everyone's liking (and that's absolutely fine) I'm in the midst of collating a few gift guides to feature here throughout November. Many of the products I already own (or have on my wish list) and yes, most embrace the qualities I look for when I'm buying gifts. I hope you'll find them useful!

Have you dared to think about Christmas yet? Are you a list-maker or do you purchase on a whim?

PS. a little rhyme that I have used over the years: something I want, something I need, something to wear, something to read. 


30 COMMENTS

  1. I'm going to start thinking about it soon... I hate leaving everything to the last minute, but I usually do. xx

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    1. I think it's easy to live in denial ;) x

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  2. Yes I keep a list on my phone in 'notes' - as I think of ideas or hear someone say something I add it to my list. In the past I've purchased a lot of my gifts online, through places like Oxfam. I've also grabbed a few things for the boys throughout the year when sales have been on.

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    1. I got a book for Che last week that was 50% off. I'm thinking of giving my bag of Christmas gifts to my mum whilst me move - I'd hate them to get damaged or misplaced! x

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  3. Holiday gift guides are always welcome — I think most readers enjoy them! I keep a running wishlist on Amazon (you can add things to it from virtually any store) and also boards on Pinterest. The nice thing about that is that family and friends ask for the links; it's lovely to see what among your "likes" they personally pick out for you. It's like getting a surprise you kind-of-already-know-about, but better :)

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  4. I have pretty much got Christmas sorted for the children - mine & my nephews. I'm looking forward to your guide for inspiration for the rest!

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  5. I keep a list in the note section of my phone. It also means that no one gets missed! I also keep a list of things myself and my husband would like. My parents and his always ask and they want to buy things we need or want as well ... so it's handy to have a few ideas jotted down for them as well.

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    1. I keep a list in the note section of my phone too! Christmas shopping has always been a simple and small thing around here. "Something you want, something you need, something to wear, something to read .." is the mantra my little family follows. Instead of focusing our thoughts on receiving .. we direct our focus to how much we can give to others, as a family.

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  6. The top shelf of our wardrobe is for presents we've bought people throughout the year - wholeheartedly agree that not leaving it until the last minute saves $$ and sanity. We also have a few card and generic gifts (mostly for kids) for unplanned (erm... Forgotten) gift giving occasions that arise

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    1. Although I feel I have to add I cannot stand it when people have a list if gifts they wish to receive ... I don't care how any times people ask you just smile and say 'anything at all please' ... Falls into the same category as wedding registries ...

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    2. Oh my reply got lost :(. I agree with you about the lists fir yourself (and it's why we didn't have a wedding registry) but we make an exception for our parents. They have fun buying for their grandkids but just want to know what their adult kuds need. Both sides have been outwardly annoyed with me the years I've not given them some ideas.

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  7. I usually do my Christmas shopping in October, after I've spent a few months thinking about it. The wooden swingset I bought my kidlets arrived last week and is stashed at Mum and Dad's house. I just have to pick up a few odds and ends and I'm done.

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    1. Our new backyard is lovely and flat and I think a swingset is in order. Where did you get yours? x

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    2. Peppertown http://www.peppertown.com.au/products/swings.php
      Looks like it will go the distance. Really good materials. Freight to Newcastle was $200 though...

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  8. I try to start this month so I don't get caught up in all the shiny christmas things and over spend.

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  9. I too keep a list from about this time of year onwards, jotting down ideas for family members as I think of them. November is my gift buying month. I like to have it all done before the December rush. And I too follow the want/need/wear/read mantra... such a sensible idea! x

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  10. What a good idea, Jodi, usually I plan to make most of presents, like soaps or sewing things... but at the end I am so afraid that people would think it is not enough... this year I might taht it slow and think of it from November to avoid the rush... thanks for your ideas that are welcome!

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  11. I love the idea of gifts bought with thought and consideration- so many people just buy rubbish to 'tick' the person off their list rather than thinking about it and more than that, I think the gifts that are handmade are by far the best...

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  12. That rhyme is an old favourite of mine too. Although I have to say I do like when people have a list of things they're wanting. I know I hardly every buy myself anything because there's always something more important yet there are some lovely things that I would love to have. If I can buy something for someone that they really want instead of something they may not like or use then I'd much rather do that. It seems far less wasteful also. Having said that I still say to people if they ask that nothing or anything is fine haha. Go figure!

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  13. Every year somehow it sneaks up on me and I am left unprepared and scrambling, and promise I'll do better next year. This year I really am going to try and get on it. I get overwhelmed feeling like I'm spending money just to spend money, instead of thoughtful gifts that hopefully they would love. bring on the gift list!

    www.hollandsreverie.blogspot.com

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  14. I love that old rhyme too, and use it to guide purchases for the children, with some modifications. Sometimes, "something you need" becomes "something to share" which justifies a larger purchase like outdoor toy or for this year, I'm converting an old coffee table into a lego table. I like to start in October because it aligns with my Fall cleaning (other hemisphere) and really considering what I need to keep and what the children really use.

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  15. I buy all the presents throughout the year..this year I only have two gifts still to go :) I use the sales and handmade markets months in Advance..Santa always brings my girls a new pair of pyjamas the night before christmas in our house, and those i buy on the sales in january..11 months in advance every year!!! So the "only" stress in desember is the christmas cleaning and lots of space for reading, decorating, crafting & baking...

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  16. i travelled to italy 2 weeks ago. sitting close to the water, collecting sun rays and just reading and knitting one glove a day ... the perfect preparation for christmas ! all my friends will get a pair of knitted gloves. and back home i keep knitting ... and december is still far, far away :)

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  17. We stick to : something we made, something bought locally, something they need, something they want. Keeps the budget under check, plus then you don't end up buying too much junk. The exception is for Jarvis each year we try to buy him one big gift that is a birthday Christmas combo. First year it was a cubby house, second year a chook enclosure, this year we are think of a trampoline.

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  20. I love the little rhyme you mention at the end of your post. What a great way to inspire (and limit) gift ideas.

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  21. I'm feel lucky to have a family (mine & the one of my husband) where Christmas is important but more than the gifts. Be together is the best part of it, share some homemade gifts... Each year, I tell the same thing, I'm feel lucky, happy! (It's more complicated with my godson, I try to listen the wishes of his parents but, this little boy has just 3 years, no need of the most expensive things, just love, some material and immaterial gifts... But yes, it's my opinion and I try to combine the two points of view!)

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  22. We've already bought all the kids gifts including niece and nephew. My husband will probably be the most difficult to purchase for, and no doubt I will leave that until the last minute due to my procrastination. I would like to choose something mindfully though.

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  23. I have one of those frustrating extended families where almost nobody actually enjoys the gift-giving aspect of Christmas (with the exception of myself, my husband, and my little brother), but where everyone refuses to accept that a lovely family sit-down dinner, with everyone gotten together the one time a year they do, would work quite well as a gift in itself, and forget all the other department store presents. If only I could convince them to throw out gift-giving all together. But, alas, there we go each year with our presents that irritate each other! It's such a shame.

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