Friday, December 04, 2009

What Not To Give for Christmas

I know what it's like. Scrambling around, trying to find that last minute gift for one of your relatives that you only see a few times a year. Or maybe there is a person in your family who is just hard to buy for. Nevertheless, a few days before Christmas you have shopped for everyone in your family except for that one person. So, in a desperate attempt to find something that he/she might like, you pick up the best piece of junk you can find. Not that you think it's junk at the moment, but if you gave it more thought you would realize that the gift would never be used. It would be opened on Christmas only to spend the next 12 months stuck in the back of a drawer never to be used or looked at again. Ultimately, you have just wasted your money. So, why not get a gift card to a popular store or a nice coffee mug? Those are two relatively cheap things, that will be used and maybe even enjoyed! Below is a list of things NOT to buy someone for Christmas.

10. Manicure/Pedicure at Home Set
Why? While the idea of being able to do your own manicure and pedicures at home sounds nice, it's highly unlikely that it is really going to get used. Mainly because the machine needs batteries, and mainly because there isn't enough time in a day to do something like that. So, while it's a nice thought, it is one of those gifts that will sit in a drawer or closet, unopened and unused. And don't even think about re-gifting it.

9. Perfume
Why? Unless you have been instructed by the person you are giving the gift to of what type of perfume they like, then I wouldn't try it. Everyone has their own personal preferences for perfume. Some like musky perfume, others like sweet perfume, while some like the strong make-your-eyes-water perfume. It would be in your best interest (and your wallet's) to not purchase perfume for another person unless you know (for certain) what they wear and/or like.

8. 5 Dollar, Dollar Store Movies
Why? If it was a box office hit movie on sale for five dollars, then by all means get it, BUT if it's one of those World's Funniest Sports Bloopers movies or a made-for-tv movie, then don't! You will just be helping that person add more clutter to their DVD Collection where it will sit in their DVD cabinet, unopened, collecting dust, and each time they look at it they'll wonder what in the world you were thinking. Back away from the 5 Dollar shelf at the Dollar Store.

7. Purses
Why? Most women have their preferences of purses. Some like them big and open, others like them small and compact. Some like neutral colors while other like vibrant patterns. So, unless that special lady has told you what color, shape, size, serial number (kidding), and brand of the purse they like or want...I wouldn't venture into this territory. My Mother In Law once asked why I carried a big purse, and then bought me a tiny one for Christmas. I never used it, and it is still sitting in my closet. Don't waste your money on a purse for someone else...they won't use it.

6. C.D's
Why? This is another one of those things that, unless you were instructed by the person as to what CD they want or what artist/band they like, it's not a smart thing to do. I've been given CD's by artist that I didn't even like, and their CD sat in my CD collection, collecting dust. CD's aren't all that cheap either, so, save your money and get that special someone an iTunes gift card, or something of that nature.

5. Video Games
Why? I know that those 10 dollar Wii, Playstation & XBOX Games look enticing, but there is a reason why they are 10 dollars, and it's not because they are so intriguing and fun. It's because they're terrible, and you're lucky if your gaming system doesn't spit the game out itself from pure disgust. So maybe instead of picking up one of these horrible games, get a nice gift card that can help pay for a game that special someone might actually enjoy.

4. Annoying Toys
Why? I never understood why my Parents got so agitated when we'd get some kind of annoying, singing, chattering toy for Christmas from one of our relatives. I understand now that I have a child. I swear these things play by themselves in the middle of the night, and the kids don't really play with them. They use them to aggravate the Parents. Settle for a nice stuffed animal, a Barbie, or even a Hot Wheel. Silence is key.

3. Clothing
Why? You really shouldn't buy clothes as a gift for anyone that you do not live with or are very close to. There is a good chance you'll get the wrong size, wrong color, or even wrong style of clothing. Besides that, you are setting yourself up to offend someone. Maybe they wear a medium size shirt, and you bought a large. It's happened to me before, and it is offensive. Nevertheless, it will inevitably hang in the closet for days, weeks, months, and even years. Mid as well hang a 20 dollar bill in your closet, and call it quits. Again, gift cards fix these problems perfectly!

2. Books
Why? Only the reader knows what they like to read. So it is in your best interest to save your money on a book that will just sit on a shelf, and perhaps get a gift card to Barnes and Noble instead. Unless, of course, you know there is a book that they have been dying to read, but do not randomly buy a book that you think they might enjoy.

1. Pillows, or Blankets that are stuffed with feathers
Why? I saved this one for last because I received a blanket stuffed with feathers a few years ago, and have been vacuuming up feathers off of my floor and couch ever since. It's a nice decorative piece which is the only reason I have kept it on the back of my love seat, but the feathers are not so enjoyable. If you decide that a pretty blanket or throw is what you want to get that someone for Christmas, just make sure it doesn't have any feathers in it.

I know that money is tight for everyone at Christmas, and I hate to see someone waste money on a gift that will never get used. Of course there are exceptions to everything I listed above, and I hope that I didn't offend anyone. Let me know what you think about my list, or if you have anything to add to it.

Oh, and if you are an online Christmas Shopper, check out this website for lots of GREAT deals:



Chell said...

LOL I am so the type of Aunt that gives LOUD toys to the little ones... They did it to me! Payback time! :)

Geezees Geezees Custom Canvas Art said...

Love it...i am so happy someone finally posted a "what not to buy" list, because how many times have we all gotten those gifts from family. Thanks!

Brandy said...

you are so awesome. so many tips and help

our b life said...

Let's all gather and send this out to grandparents a-like and all the relatives who should READ NOW.

Working Mommy said...

I agree with all but the feathers one...I'm a fan - even though I end up vacuuming more than eating because of them!


Steve tingle said...

Christmas is for kids....I Amazoned a toy to my grandson, and that's it.

...stay at home wifey said...

Granny panties can enter the clothing paragraph as well. My Grandma (who is passed away now) use to give me Granny panties EVERY year. I hated it when I was a child, but now I cherish it. I still have 1 pair just because it's a memory. I love the blog!

Helene said...

Uh, is there anyway I can possibly e-mail your list this anonymously to my MIL?? She has gotten me almost every single one of those things on your list and you are SO right. Most of the stuff I've never even bothered to open...and I have a tiny purse sitting in my closet as well.

After 14 years of this, it gets harder and harder each year to just smile politely and say thank you. Now I'm starting to wonder if she does this on purpose to annoy me.

Menopausal New Mom said...

Good advice here on what not to buy, I wonder how many reading it are going "Oh Oh!" Lol!!!

BTW, I totally get the annoying toy thing, seems my daughter always ends up with at least one of those!