Is re-gifting bad?
Is Re-gifting bad?
I don’t mean morally wrong. That’s just silly.
I mean, am I a terrible, social deviant if I re-gift a present someone gives me?
Not that I’ve ever done it, of course.
But hypothetically, at this time of the year, you might receive a lot of incidental items you wouldn’t normally buy for yourself, and you will also have to come up with a lot of small, inexpensive (that’s the goal) items to give to people you don’t normally buy for, like your:
- white elephant exchanges
- people you haven’t seen for a long time, but they randomly show up with a gift for you
Naturally, money works great. Who doesn’t appreciate a $20 bill? But let’s face it, that adds up quickly for normal people. And your kids have a lot of teachers. I’m just going to go out on a limb here and say you’ve probably gotten an overabundance of votive candles, tinned treats, and chocolate at Christmas from your neighbors and co-workers.
Who hasn’t taken that unwrapped tin of cookies or popcorn, peeled off the card, and taken it to a neighbor or a party hostess?
Here are some suggestions for quick gifts that you can buy or re-gift when they find their way to your doorstep:
- home-baked goodies (we keep too many of these)
- poinsettia (hold off on buying this–someone will give you one)
- gift cards: movies, restaurants, coffee shops, departments stores (everyone likes these!)
- blank journal (if they like writing; it’s safer than a book they won’t read)
- coffee or teas & mugs in a basket (we have a lot of these, but we like them)
- a bottle of their favorite beverage
- Harry & David’s (no one re-gifts their stuff because it’s too good and too expensive)
- Christmas kitchen items: hand towels, baker’s mitts, apron, etc.
- Christmas decor: tree ornament, candle, pillow, etc.
- something silly and Christmas-y, like a dancing Santa or a tacky sweater (perfect for that white elephant gift)
Who’s to say that the bag of Christmas dishtowels and soaps you received from that friend wasn’t a gift to them before it made its way to you? Christmas is about giving, after all.
That would mean the re-gifted gift has twice the sentiment.
But if you want to buy a small gift no one will give away, focus on something the recipient enjoys, like a particular restaurant, type of coffee, or author. Buy a gift that says, I know you. And if you don’t know them (and we all have those people), it’s still perfectly fine to buy a gift that’s general in nature. We all use candles, dish towels, and cookies. A generic gift isn’t less of a gift. It’s just more general.
It’s the thought that counts, anyway. And who’s to say that counting more than once is a bad thing?