The Season of Gift Giving…or Re-Gifting?

Alright, I’m gonna beg you for comments at the end of the post today.  To show you my appreciation of such, I will reward one of you, randomly selected of course, with a little something to say, “Thanks for the Laugh!” After reading through the post, please tell me your comment to the question I will ask at the bottom.  All comments must be received by Wednesday, December 14th at midnight.  On Thursday, December 15th, I’ll post the winner.  Read on…

How many of you have ever received a gift that you know was re-gifted?  How many of you ever re-gifted an item yourself?  Don’t fret, I’m not here to scold you for doing so.  I, too, in fact have re-gifted a time or two especially when I have received a gift I know someone else could use or would use more than I would.

Though, I have to admit, I’m not particularly fond of the whole re-gifting thing because of my childhood experience at my grandmother’s house on Christmas day every year.  My Dad’s “parents” were very well off.  There were two sons and three grandchildren.  I was the oldest and the only girl.  Every Christmas that I can remember (which if you know me, that will be pretty far back) I would receive one or two gifts from my Dad’s parents, while the two boys would have what seemed like mountains of gifts. My Mom still remembers this, too, so I promise I’m not making this up!  As we all began to open gifts, my grandmother would dictate how we would open the gifts each year.  Always the two boys went first, “They are young, you understand, and it’s not fair to make them wait.”  Ehem…I’m young, too, and I was never allowed to bring anything from home that I received that morning so I would have something to play with.  My Dad would always say, “there will be plenty of goodies at Ma’s so you don’t need to drag along more for us to lug back home.”

But you see, there was a strong contrast in what my Dad always thought would happen and what would actually happen.  The boys (five and 9 years younger than I was) always received boxes upon boxes of brand new items.  I received two boxes.  The difference between mine and their gifts…mine were ALWAYS re-gifted items in at least one of the two boxes, but usually both.  None were ever age appropriate and rarely were they ever anything I could wear if it were clothes and never anything I could play with when I was young.

This went on even into my adulthood.  How about giving your grandma a pretty bowl that you know she will like as it’s HER taste (not yours) and then receive it back the next year.  No wait, it gets even better.  It was even in the same wrapping paper as she never really unwrapped it.  She just pulled the tape off the end and slid it sort of out and said how nice and slid it back in.  I received it the next year with a little extra tape on that end.  The “TO” and “FROM” were scribbled out and turned around to match to me and from her for this year.

Before you think I’m taking you down a depressed road, have no fear, I’m not.  I crack up when I talk about it now.  It has made me stop and be in thought of the receiver and determined to get an appropriate gift when I shop for someone to this day.  I’m going to make this a teachable moment for all you re-gifting fans!  No, really, this will turn out funny and you will go away with a lesson learned the hard way.  AND, you don’t even have to be the one that had to learn it the hard way!

First, though, I have to tell you a more funny story! You’re gonna love this!

A friend and I were talking this week about gifting, thrifting and re-gifting.  Then she told me a story that just, well, you know—“Tickled Me Pink”!

A few years ago, her dear friend’s parents bought a new home.  As a house warming gift, their realtor bought them a new picture for their home.  However, the lady of the home had never seen one of these photos before and apparently held it up the wrong way.  It was a long rectangular picture using items in nature to spell out their name.  I’m sure you have seen these as they are quite popular at the present time. She, of course, had no idea there were actually letters spelled out of the items in each section.  So, whether she held it vertically or horizontally she just saw wagon wheels, tree limbs, fence posts, etc. It seems she never actually held it up the correct way to see the letters.

A few months later, she gave the photo to her son as his church was doing an auction to raise money for a child/mission project.  She told him it was pretty, but just not her style and it was still brand new, maybe he could take it to the auction and someone would enjoy it.  So he did.  Well, the son, also was not aware of this new style of picture and took it to the church auction drop off site.

Fast forward a few weeks and the auction night was here.  The son went to the auction planning on enjoying the festivities and hoping to help out in some way for the mission.  A friend in the church came over and said, “Hey, you really need to come see this picture and I really think you need to bid on it as it has your name on it.”  This poor friend had no idea that he was talking to the person that had brought the picture to the auction!  The guy was now curious and went over to the photo he had dropped off from his mom.

Yep!  Right there in front of his face, was his last name spelled out among wagon wheels, fence posts, tree limbs and the like!  Someone doing the display for the auction knew this type of photo and had it set up properly.

You know what’s coming, don’t you!

Yes, he bid AND won that picture that night!  How could he not since it had his name all over it!

This story just cracked me up and I knew that I just had to share with you all this week.  Here’s how I would like to encourage you in this gift giving season, or shall I say re-gifting season.  If in fact you are going to re-gift, first and foremost, make sure this person isn’t the one that gave it to you in the first place!  C’mon–put a little thought into it!  Make sure the gift is age appropriate.  Don’t give your size 6 pre-teen, eight year old niece a granny Christmas sweater size XL.  SERIOUSLY!  And never, never re-use the gift tags. Really!  At least recycle Christmas cards and cut out a pretty part of a card and make a new tag.  Hey, at least the tag is new.  No wait, it’s re-gifted, too!

So, c’mon, all of you out there reading this blog this season, give me a story to chuckle with you and all my readers about your experience in re-gifting.  Whether you have re-gifted or have been the recipient of a re-gifted item, please add your comment below by Wednesday, December 14th at midnight.  On December 15th, I will randomly pick one of you to receive a $10.00 Target or Starbucks Gift Card (I will let you choose if you win!)  Because, every one of us could use a good laugh this season and who doesn’t like a Gift Card to HAVE to spend on ourselves!  Oh, and it will be brand new, I promise!

…and that’s all I have to say about that!

It’s beginning to look at lot like CHRISTmas!

6 thoughts on “The Season of Gift Giving…or Re-Gifting?

  1. Wow Tammy. Regifting, what a novel idea. I stopped giving gifts long ago. No one every put much thought into what they gave me after I became an adult and I always made or bought something very special for the person I cared to give a gift to. The year I received a blanket in a bag that was stiff and scratchy and obviously from a very lesser big box store, I decided no one in my in-law family deserved anything from me. My dear MIL had actually made me take a home made Christmas ornament off her tree because only her daughters were allowed to make them for her. I decided only children should receive gifts and that is who I buy for now. Sorry, not a funny story, just a comment on MY reality check.

  2. Tammy, that’s awful! You have some pretty not-fun relatives!
    I’m usually a fan of re-gifting, if it’s something you’re not going to use and you know the other person will like it (or it’s for a white elephant gift–you should have a white elephant party, Tammy, so you can give away all those terrible gifts from your grandmother!)

    My husband accidentally re-gifted a card to me for my birthday. He gave me a sweet card one year, and wrote in it. The next year, he gave me the exact same card. I was pondering on whether his choice had some secret significance to it, so I mentioned it, but he had completely forgotten he’d bought the same card last year and picked that one out again next year. I least I knew he meant what it said!

    So this year, I’m sort of re-gifting but actually swiping a gift for him. He bought a model car for our little boy and one for himself, but he put them away months ago and I’m certain has completely forgotten about them (he does that with gifts for me too, when we moved he’d find this nice gift and say, “Hey, that’s nice. What’s that for?” and I’d have to remind him to hide it because it was the Christmas gift he’d bought for me.)

    So I’ve wrapped up the model car and put his name on the box with a Guess Who? in the “From” part. It’s going to be fun watching him open a gift he bought for himself! =)

  3. Janice: So, since you know me well (hehehe) I’m parking on your second to last sentence….

    “I decided only children should receive gifts and that is who I buy for now.”

    Since you state – ONLY children – and I’m an ONLY child – here’s my list….

    ANY of your quilts, ANY of your unfinished quilt tops…..

    Sorry – just couldn’t resist some “Only Child” humor!

  4. Janice: Yes I sure did get a bag full of PINK wonderfulness! And, yes I did it it quilted before the PINK machine left! It, unfortunately is in the “to be bound” mountain pile of quilts. Oh, to have 8 days a week with nobody knowing I have that 8th day! ‘Cause if they did, they would give me just one more thing to do!

    HaHa…Larry told me to tell you that he and Kristen are also “only children” and would gladly be excited to be added to your Christmas list! Funny how us “onlies” can change the meaning of a sentence, eh?!

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