"Tis better to give than to receive." My family truly did each other proud in thinking about gift giving this year. I can't say it was a particular frugal year, but was not excessive since we want to put more money towards traveling this year. Here are a few winners:
DD1 gave her grandma the gift of taking a community ed baking class together in January. With my MIL not going to Arizona this winter, DD2 thought an experience gift would be more appreciated than stuff. We had a good laugh when DS gave her his gift, gift cards to Perkins where my MIL goes every Tuesday and Sunday morning. He said, "I gave you cooking class as well, but Perkins will do the cooking."
DD2 gave DD2 a first release Julian Lennon vinyl LP. If you listen deeply, you can hear the talent was definitely passed down from father to son. She is expanding her music collection and really liked the album.DD2 found this in a antique shop in the vintage music section. She also finally gave her a pair of socks from the TV show The Walking Dead, bought for her birthday but misplaced until Christmas. DD loved them. My kids are weird
DS, pretty much always gives movies, but sourced two rare volumes for his sisters. I wouldn't do justice trying to describe, but they were both completely tickled, even though they arrived to the house after Christmas and DD1 still will need to retrieve hers. DH got a few action movies and I got the new Beauty and the Beast.
I gave DH a t-shirt and beer glasses for the yet to be opened brewery in town. He was quite pleased and couldn't figure out how we got them. I also gave both him and his sister a blown up 5 by 7 print of the two of them with their dad from summer 1965.
Our nephew was ecstatic about the Australian Penny skateboard DH and I gave him. We got a good deal, 40% less than retail, but still spendy. This will go towards part of his April birthday, but the happiness in his smile was worth it.
We gave our fare share of gift cards, new t-shirts (always appreciated!), new p.j.s and such, but tried to mix it up with a few finds. DS is harder for the girls since he has to lug things back, so gift cards to places he might not splurge on himself were appreciated and will be used. Giving gifts should be about the recipient-that's where the greatest joy comes from. I'll continue to think through ideas and look for unique gifts that I know the recipient will like. The ideas above demonstrate it doesn't need to be about the biggest and most expensive.