Most & Least Returned Holiday Gifts

by Katy on December 15, 2016 · 60 comments

Face it, gift giving is hard. Sure, there might be a few people on your list who are easy to shop for, but for the most part you’re rolling the dice when deciding what to buy. Add in the time and effort it takes to shop, wrap and deliver your gifts, and it’s no wonder that many people find themselves stressed during the month of December. Unfortunately, chances are that your carefully chosen gifts are going right back to the store. Shoppers return nearly $70 billion of purchases during the holiday season. Yes, you read that right. Seventy billion-with-a-b dollars! However, with a bit of planning, you can avoid some of the most commonly returned gifts from your shopping list.


According to a study conducted by Kohl’s, clothing/shoes are by far the most returned gift category, and makes up a full “62% of all returns.”  This makes sense as fit differs from brand to brand, plus it’s near to impossible to truly know another person’s clothing style. Steer clear of this category if you you’re hoping that your gift will be received joyfully.


Most of us enjoy creating home spaces that reflect our individual aesthetic. But when well meaning friends and family decide that our home needs multiple sparkly pillows or moose theme artwork, it comes a problem. Avoid decor gifts, especially quirky ones that Newsweek points out are “most likely to go awry.”


Candles are such a quintessentially uninspired gift, that Saturday Night Live recently produced a hilarious video titled The Christmas Candle, featuring fur clad actresses who sing about how “It’s the gift of having a gift to give away.” When you take into consideration that candle burning has been linked to multiple health issues, it’s best to keep a hundred yard distance from this clichéd gift.

So what gifts are least likely to be returned? That’s a hard one as The Daily Mail has reported that as much as “42% of women return their husband’s holiday gifts.” However, these ideas should please most recipients!


Whether you’re giving home baked goods or a restaurant gift certificate, everybody loves food. National chains sell gift cards which work well for far flung family, and it can be nice to support local establishments for your in-town friends. Wine, gourmet goodies and other fancy treats fit in with most everyone’s style. Just make sure to be aware of any dietary restrictions.

Experiential gifts

We’re all fighting against the monster called clutter, which make experiential gifts perfect for friends with limited space or those who already own everything they could ever possibly want or need. Great examples include:

  • Movie or theater tickets.
  • Museum or zoo memberships.
  • Tickets to a concert, lecture or sporting event.
  • A gift certificate for pampering.
  • Tunes gift card.

Gift Cards

Gifts cards get a bad rap as a lazy or thoughtless gift, but with a bit of extra effort they can be a truly welcome gift that’s sure to be redeemed. Instead of a general gift card such as Target or Amazon, choose a place that shows you’ve given thought to your recipient’s interests. Examples include:

  • Independent bookstore.
  • Favorite restaurant.
  • Video gaming store.
  • A local toy store.
  • Coffee shop.


You might feel like a character from The Sopranos when choosing cash as a gift, but at least you know that it’s 100% unlikely to be returned. (Luckily, there are ways to give money than behind The Bada-Bing.) One fun way to elevate gifted cash is to fold it into fun shapes, like these stars. I folded $100 into stars for my nephew’s Bar Mitzvah a few years ago, which was much more of a hit than any check would have been. YouTube is full of tutorials on how to fold money, which can be a very fun activity. Just make sure to stop by the bank for crisp new bills.


You’d think that the cycle of gift giving would be complete on December 26th, but that’s far from the truth as studies have shown that “17 percent of recipients planned to donate an unwanted present, 13 percent planned to regift one and 10 percent would simply throw the bad gift away.” However, with a bit of forethought you can avoid burdening your loved ones with the most commonly returned gifts.

Katy Wolk-Stanley

“Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without.”

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{ 60 comments… read them below or add one }

Annye December 15, 2016 at 1:34 pm

My husband was always at a loss as to what to buy me until he hit on a winner a few years ago: A Goodwill gift card! Yes, he could just give me cash or tell me to “go crazy” on my next thrift outing, but somehow a gift card is more fun.

If I find something I want but it’s a little more than I want to spend — I am thrift shopping, after all — I can pull out the gift card, remind myself my husband would think it’s still a bargain (because compared to buying new, it is), and treat myself. I get exactly what I want, and my husband gets kudos for one gift over and over!


Katy December 15, 2016 at 2:52 pm

Yes, my mother gives me gift cards to Goodwill every year. I love them!


Mrs. Picky Pincher December 15, 2016 at 2:21 pm

This is a great point. Don’t buy clothes for other people! I’ve had people do this for me (as kind a thing as it is), and I always feel pressured to wear clothes that don’t physically fit me or meet my aesthetic choices. Blegh. And I’ve totally been given candles before as an “Oh I didn’t realize you’d be here” gift, which is hilarious. I still use that candle to power my wax warmer, so it turned out to be a super useful gift, as funny as that is.

This year I’m doing a lot more gift cards combined with DIY gifts. It’s actually brought us in a little under budget for the holidays, which is fantastic.


tia December 15, 2016 at 2:54 pm

I totally get kids wanting gifts, they don’t have jobs and are bombarded by advertising. Adults wanting gifts makes me scratch my head and go “huh?”. You have a job and buy the stuff you need. Wow, 70 billion bucks of gift fail. Why oh why insanity?


Shevaun December 18, 2016 at 11:56 am

I get your point.

My husband and I use gift-giving (holidays and birthdays) to satisfy a lot of our pent up household demand. For example, I know he got me a new vacuum cleaner for Christmas. I got him a digital camera… he runs his own ebay business and after his old camera broke, we’ve been making do with an old phone. And for the babies? FINALLY a double stroller!!


gepee December 15, 2016 at 3:24 pm

The easiest for me are friends and family with whom I am really relaxed. With these people I have learned that it is also possible to talk about presents – of course it then isn’t a surprise, but a good gift. This year I thought a friend of mine might like to have a special sort of pillow, so I asked her. She said yes, she got to choose the size and the style of fabric, and I will sew it and have fun with that


Elizabeth B December 15, 2016 at 4:03 pm

That’s lovely. Those are the best sorts of gifts.

My best friend from college asked last night if she could buy me a present — but she didn’t want one in return. She wasn’t sure I’d be okay with that and was concerned that my (mile-wide) guilty streak would make me uncomfortable with receiving something without reciprocating. I told her it was fine and that gifts should come from the heart and not be mutual obligations. She’s happy, I feel very loved, and everything is good. Gift-giving doesn’t have to be stressful, you know?


Elizabeth B December 15, 2016 at 3:57 pm

Katy, what denomination did you use for the stars? Small bills would mean lots and lots of folding!


Betty Winslow December 15, 2016 at 4:51 pm

Classic fail: my mom making me clothes *she* wanted me to wear, culminating in the polyester olive green turtleneck top – I hate polyester, olive green, AND turtlenecks.

I do love gift cards, though – it means I can treat myself to something guilt-free, whereas money would end up being used on something less fun, like bills.


Taylor Dickinson December 15, 2016 at 4:56 pm

I take your point about candles, but I hardly consider the Daily Mail to be a top-tier publication. It’s a tabloid with the veneer of a legitimate publication, and the article you linked to barely cited sources.


Denise December 16, 2016 at 12:24 am

The Daily Mail: or as it’s more commonly known, The Daily Fascist…


Anne December 15, 2016 at 5:23 pm

She may have read the inspirational article in the Daily Mail, but every bit of today’s blog rings true. Every….bit.


Patti December 15, 2016 at 5:41 pm

I have been giving frozen soup from a local business – they were selling at our farmer’s market but just opened a store and I want to support them (they sell casseroles, soups, spice blends, marinades, pimento cheese blends, and pickles). Everyone I have given it to has started out saying, “you don’t have to give me anything….oh! thank you so much!!!!!! ” . It has been a huge hit. I am also giving out movie tickets wrapped up with movie size candy boxes to my girlfriends with a note that we will go together to the movies.


janine December 15, 2016 at 5:43 pm

I love small remembrances that are funny, consumable or not the type that you feel any obligation towards the donor. That said I do remember a particularly painful holiday when my sister received NOTHING except socks from our extended family – my mom had requested them from everyone and as an easy gift they all cam through – but poor little girl – still feeling sorry about that Xmas. Then there was the headboard – absolutely hated it – turned up on my bed – to this day have no idea why – liked the one I had which had been in the family for eons and was serviceable. It resides in my 3rd floor attic – now retro so thinking about giving it away?
Just bought some dear friends three bottles of organic maple syrup. Feel that someone in their family will decide they like it!


Roberta December 15, 2016 at 6:42 pm

Oh, I need to make friends with you. Maple syrup would be a wonderful gift!


Denise December 16, 2016 at 12:27 am

Aged, syrupy balsamic vinegar- all raisin-y was my favourite gift to receive. Yummmm.


Canadian Girl December 15, 2016 at 5:59 pm

Thanks so much for the link for folding money into origami shapes so so cool!! I personally am not a fan of gift cards. So much wasted plastic that just ends up in the landfill what a waste. I bet the amount of unused gift cards worldwide must be a staggering amount its good for corporations when they don’t get used so they must love seeing that!


Susie's Daughter December 16, 2016 at 7:45 am

I couldn’t bear to throw them out (we used to have a collection of Starbucks cards from the previous drink habits) and found this site to be useful for finding ways to recycle the old cards.

Also for anyone who has a guitar player in their life, there is a thingy that you can buy that makes old cards into guitar picks.


kathleen December 16, 2016 at 6:46 pm

I bought my guitar-playing boss a guitar pick punch from one year. He could afford to buy himself anything so I tried to find unusual, and they had great service.


Karen B December 15, 2016 at 6:09 pm

A lot of this is just plain common sense and people seem to lose it at this time of year. Know your receipent! Anyone who knows me well will not give me pimento cheese! It occurred to me that one of the nicest gifts I received last year was a lovely, lightly scented, pink candle!


Bee December 15, 2016 at 7:16 pm

I completely enjoy giving gifts to others especially children. But I do hate to “exchange gifts.” I buy presents for others because I want to. I do not want the recipient to feel obligated to give me something in return. I honestly do not want to receive another ruffled apron with a giant red polka-dotted chicken on it or a Christmas pot holder. I don’t want perfume or more workout gear. The best things about life– and Christmas — cannot be bought. So this holiday, I hope that my family and friends will grant me my Christmas wish: their presence, their love and no presents!


JD December 15, 2016 at 7:50 pm

I agree that for many adults, there is no need to buy them a thing that is just stuff — give them something they can eat/do/utilize. There truly is a lot of returning after Christmas, unhappily.
One year, before I went back to work, I baked a dozen different recipes of cookies, and divided them all into inexpensive cookie jars for various extended family members. That was a hit. Another time I gave fruit, and another time, two or three good coffees and homemade cookies and cakes in a basket, all well-received. My sister once gave my grown kids light bulbs and toilet paper, as they were both in college and living in apartments on slim budgets. Good idea!
The worst gifts to me are usually clothes. They usually aren’t what I would pick out, or they don’t fit well. It seems if people ask me what I DON’T like in clothing, they get mixed up and get me just that. Then, my dear aunt once sent both of my girls socks for Christmas, and they were all toddler sized socks — my kids were 8 and 11 at the time. And, as Katy said, don’t give décor, not unless you know for a fact the recipient has been longing for that very item and hasn’t gotten it yet.


Marcia December 15, 2016 at 7:52 pm

The secret to giving good gifts (which I am told I do sometimes) is to think like the person you’re gifting. Think about the colors they wear, the styles, the perfect “looks like them” accessory or even clothing if you know them well enough. I have straight out told people ” I don’t ever wear this color” and still get items that are the offensive color. One sister and I have it down–when she asks me what I want, I tell her. She does the same for me. Result: we get things we like!! I am always happy with a gift card, yet I hate to give them, thinking it looks like I didn’t spend much time or trouble on that gift. Of course that assumes it is a gift card for some place you KNOW I like. I also like to include a gift receipt in the box with the gift, because if you hate it, PLEASE take it back and get something you like. I like my wardrobe so much more when I choose my OWN clothing!!


Lindsey December 15, 2016 at 8:30 pm

Some ideas for gift giving: I gave a $100 graduation gift in one dollar bills, stapled together end to end, and then snuck into the kid’s room and hung it up like garland. It took him a week to notice it!

I tell people to give me expensive toilet paper, since I would never buy it for myself. I am always thrilled to get it—I have seven family members and one year they plotted together and each person gave me a case of TP so I ended up with 7 cases. Best. Gift. Ever.

I have given 8 hours of gardening labor and my husband has given 8 hours of house repairs to an elderly friend. I loved a three sectioned composter built by a friend using discarded pallets that he scrounged from the dump, sanded and painted.

A friend of mine does vermin-composting (worm composting) and one year she gave most of her gardening friends bags of worm casings.

One year I gave a friend a dozen locally produced eggs once a week for three months.

And, finally, I have a young niece who fell in love with my glass coin jar, into which we dump change from our pockets every night. For Christmas, I gave her the jar full of change—it was not quite full so I added in enough pennies to fill it. She spent days counting and recounting the money and then I made a date to take her to a coin counting machine and helped her select one of the gift cards offered by the machine. It was fun for both of us.


Kim in Los Alamitos December 16, 2016 at 8:12 am

These are all brilliant gift ideas Lindsey!


Chris December 16, 2016 at 3:36 pm

My brother in law works in a high school where they throw out 1/4 or less toilet paper rolls and he brings them home rather than toss them out. My nephew was so impressed by our “fancy” toilet paper. He may get a 4 pack of the “fancy” stuff as part of his (very) minimal gift from us!!


Marion December 16, 2016 at 2:07 am

For several years I had copies made of heirloom family photos for my siblings for Christmas.
They were a huge hit.
For myself, a well seasoned senior, I never met a homemade cookie I didn’t like or homemade jelly. And a sheet of forever stamps is great.
My friends give me seed and suet cakes to feed the birds. Love it! Entertainment all winter right outside my window.


susanna d December 16, 2016 at 10:33 am

Heirloom family pictures would be a huge hit with me, too. I love old family pictures, and I know there are a lot of them out there that I’d love to see again – and to get a copy of them would be awesome.

This gave me an idea, though. My mom passed on earlier this year, and while going through her things, I found the love letters she and my dad exchanged back when they were dating (in the late 1940’s). I remember back when I was young, after my dad had passed away, how she’d read the notes to me. I brought a couple of the notes to her memorial luncheon and my family was thrilled to read them. (They’re very sweet, g-rated notes, of the “I’m thinking of you” and “where shall we go on our next date?” variety.) I’m going to scan the notes to give to my brothers as a remembrance of her. That way a little part of her will be at Christmas with us, on our first Christmas without her.

I’m going to scan a few of my parents’ old pictures to include as well – thank you for this great idea!


Karen B December 16, 2016 at 10:49 am

Absolutely fabulous gift!


Marybeth December 16, 2016 at 4:15 am

My sister CAN NOT COOK! For her birthday one year I made her 4 containers of meatballs and sauce. I got her some fancy cheese that she loves and some crackers. When it was time for presents I went to my car and brought in the cooler. Everyone was so confused. She was so excited. I would get a text every week for the next month thanking me for dinner. MY other sister and Dad said they would love that for their birthdays. Guess what they got.
I volunteer as a religion teachers for years. I do not expect a gift. I have had homemade cards and I love them. My 2 favorite presents were a beautiful soft blanket. I’m using it right now. I also will never forget the young man who made me chocolate chip cookies and a home made card. His sister was in Chemo treatment and things were tight. He made them with his Grandmother. I will never forget that. I received many gifts over the years. Lots of candles, ornaments, gift cards, candy. All were wonderful but unnecessary. I do not remember who gave me what except for a select few gifts.


Bee December 16, 2016 at 9:56 am

Those chocolate chip cookies were made for you with love. I am sure that they were the best ones you ever tasted. It amazes me how gifts from the heart stand out in our memories.


Isabelle December 17, 2016 at 5:12 am

I would love to receive frozen home-cooked meals!! I work (almost) full time, hubby too, and we have 2 young kids. This would save many headaches on busy nights when we arrive at 5h and have to prepare diner! I did ask this for Christmas to my MIL one year but it did not materialize…. Too bad!


Karen December 17, 2016 at 10:44 am

I want to thank you Marybeth for helping me remember a wonderful memory. I had breast cancer many years ago. My daughter was in middle school and we were constantly fighting.
Several of my women friends helped me out in different ways at that time. One day my daughter said I am going to make chocolate chip cookies for these 4 ladies who helped you out Mom. I was shocked I did not think she was paying attention to the details of what was going on.
After she made the cookies I took her around and she delivered the cookies to these women.
Life went back to normal and my daughter and I again were going around and around about different things. I was complaining to one of my woman friends about her and my friend said, that girl will be just fine and she loves you. I have never gotten cookies from someone’s child who I helped out.
I was so glad she pointed it out to me. And for the record my daughter has turned out to be a fine young lady and we get along so much better.


Tami December 19, 2016 at 7:13 am

This is a beautiful, beautiful story. Thank you for sharing! And I am so happy to hear you are well many years later.


Isabelle December 16, 2016 at 6:02 am

I don’t like to receive jewelry. My husband gives me some, sometimes (cheap ones) and it’s just not my style. But I wear them on the occasional date, just to show my appreciation.
I would not just give them away. It’s rude.
I like to receive gift cards or something I asked for, like DVDs box set.
Yes, I am an adult. Yes, I still enjoy receiving gifts. And giving them. Iit’s not just a “kid thing”. Its fun to know someone thought of you, and vice versa. I feel like a lot of “frugal” people just bundle everything up (“we are adults”, “I don’t like to shop”, “too much plastic”, etc) as a excuse to be negative and takes the fun out of it.


Roberta December 16, 2016 at 7:02 am

I understand why you say this, and I feel this way about myself sometimes. But often when I receive a gift I regret the money and time that person spent. I am very particular about what I want to surround myself with, and I don’t want to add a French note board (I don’t like papers on display) or a candle just because someone gave it to me. I try to receive gifts gratefully, but it makes me regretful that someone spent money, time and natural resources when I am really trying to reduce instead of acquire. I’d genuinely rather just have time together, rather than creating stress (“I need to get her a gift!”) for my loved ones.


Cindy in the South I December 16, 2016 at 6:12 am

I would suggest wine is not a good gift unless you are absolutely sure the person drinks alcohol, or is not in recovery. It would be a terrible gift for me because I do not drink and absolutely hate it. I also do not like clothing gifts. My favorite gift was when my daughter sent me the latest issues of my favorite magazines….I am too cheap to buy them and I never find them in the thrift store. I look at my favorite old magazines over and over….lol. I usually just pay a big bill for my kids or give them cash for Christmas and for birthdays. I do the same with the single mothers who are my co-workers, I usually give them a little bit of cash, because they usually need it. I really just do not care to receive gifts because I feel I have basically everything I need…except for the repairs I need to do to my house….lol.


Bee December 16, 2016 at 9:39 am

You are right about the wine. Also one needs to be careful about food allergies when giving holiday foods and treats. Although these goodies are well intentioned, they can make someone quite ill. I try to avoid anything which contains the big three – wheat, nuts and dairy.


Isabelle December 17, 2016 at 5:14 am

Unless they are recovering alcoholic, I think giving/receiving wine is fine. I do not drink alcohol but I still enjoy receiving wine bottles for 2 reasons: I can easily re-gift it and/or it’s something I can offer when I have guests over.


Cindy in the South December 17, 2016 at 7:51 am

My aunt’s husband, I refuse to call him my uncle, would bring alcohol to my mother’s house at Christmas, knowing she did not drink, and knowing she did not want anyone else drinking in her house because we have recovering alcoholics in the family and she wanted a safe zone for them. My grandma did not want alcohol in the house for religious reasons. He wanted to “share” with relatives. He was just being a jerk and disrespectful to her. I have the same rule. I think you have to know your recipient.


Isabelle December 17, 2016 at 8:30 pm

If they clearly indicated that they didn’t want alcohol in their house then it’s just completely unacceptable to bring any to consume. But we are talking about a gift there, not someone bringing booze to open and drink at someone else’s house. 2 different things.


Ethel December 16, 2016 at 7:12 am

If I’m being honest, I don’t like getting junky things just because someone feels like they need to give me a gift when they can’t afford it. I try to buy used when I can, and if I have to buy new, I try to buy good-quality things (which tend to cost more). But I would never tell anyone that in person. Sometimes people feel like they have to get you something. Sometimes, they just don’t know what to give. I receive the gifts I get with thanks, and leave it at that.

As someone said above, it’s not a bad thing to talk about gifts. I need specific lists from everyone in my family. It takes the surprise out of it, but at least you don’t get something completely uselss or “bleh.”


susanna d December 16, 2016 at 7:28 am

My mother-in-law was known for her…strange…Christmas gifts. One year we received a plush, mounted reindeer head. No, wait, there’s more. It was motion activated, and it’s eyes would follow you as it sang Christmas carols. Creepy. She really meant well and thought it was a great gift, since we live in the woods and since this particular creature had a name – Randy. Which happens to be my husband’s name. So we thanked her as always – she really did put thought into her gifts. It’s just that her thoughts were different from ours. The reindeer did provide entertainment that year when friends would visit us.

I agree that decor items have a pretty good chance of being a miss rather than a hit (Randy the singing reindeer was a decor item. I think.) Even if you think you know what someone likes/collects – the item you choose might not be what they would have chosen.

My favorite gift (for me to receive) is a donation to one of the charities I support. And my family is usually pretty good with that. I already have so much…maybe too much.


Cindy in the South I December 16, 2016 at 8:06 am

The reindeer is so bad it is good….what a great story and entertainment……lol. I do not think I could have kept a straight face if she gave me…


Marion December 16, 2016 at 9:24 am

One year I received a singing fish. I eventually managed to pass it on to my BiL who later passed it on. I sometimes wonder if it is still out there swimming from house to house. Lol


susanna d December 16, 2016 at 10:20 am

Was that Big Mouth Billy Bass? Someone where I used to work brought one in years back, and all I could think was “I wonder if we’ll get one from Ma for Christmas?” We…didn’t. I love the idea that you made it a gift that kept on giving!


Denise December 17, 2016 at 2:29 pm

I think that the swivelling eyeballs would have given me nightmares! See what you mean about “different” thoughts…


Betty Winslow December 18, 2016 at 5:07 pm

We stayed at Great Wolf Lodge in Sandusky, OH, once, and in their lobby is a mounted moosehead that sings. In the voice of Barry White. You haven’t lived until you’ve stood open-mouthed in the lobby of a resort hotel listening to a moosehead singing in a sexy voice…. ROFL.


Sherri December 16, 2016 at 7:46 am

Growing up in a Jewish household, we received Hanukkah gifts, but nothing elaborate. It was not about the gifts. Once adulthood arrived, gifts stopped, and gift giving was just for the “kids”. I find it kind of off putting that adults need to buy each other presents, other than gifting to those who we work with to show appreciation for a job well done, or those in our lives such as the newspaper delivery person, hair salon person, etc.


Harriet December 16, 2016 at 8:45 am

And to be honest, I also kind of resent when people give me a gift that is clearly because of their own personal agenda. I had a friend who once gave me a bible for Christmas because her church was selling them. Another time she gave me a book of photographs because her boyfriend had one of his published in this book. So almost all her gifts were about “her”. Of course I was gracious, but where was the thought about me?
Also, on frugal blogs I’m always reading about some frugal product that can be handmade very cheaply and “make wonderful gifts.” Do they really? Or are they just cheap to produce?


Cindy in the South December 17, 2016 at 7:53 am

I feel the same way.


Vickie December 16, 2016 at 2:23 pm

We gave our in-laws experience gifts or gift cards to restaurants or book stores, when we were exchanging gifts. They loved it, because it’s something they rarely treated themselves to.
We do this with my grandkids and my daughter now and it’s specific to what they like – Gamestop for my grandson whose a gamer. Movie tickets for her or the kids, since that’s a real treat for them and its also a gift of time.
I give my best friend gift cards to Petsmart or the Feed store, because she has dogs and she loves to buy treats for them. She’s like me, she doesn’t want to deal with more “stuff”.


susanna d December 17, 2016 at 6:44 am

Experience gifts are such a neat idea! Last year, we gave our five year old grandson the gift of a day at the aviation museum (he told us he’d love to go there as we were driving past it a few months prior). He had a wonderful time, and still talks about it. Well, it was a summer birthday gift (not a holiday gift), since we wanted the weather to be nice when we went – and we wanted to avoid the time of the fly-in. But to be still talking about it 4 months later is pretty good for someone that age, I think.


Sweta December 16, 2016 at 2:25 pm

Frugal find I thought you might be interested in: Trevor Noah’s audio book is currently free on Audible.


JD December 16, 2016 at 7:17 pm

I already commented but somehow forgot to include that our kids’ favorite experience gift was taking them to Calloway Gardens to see the Christmas lights. We all had a lot of fun with that. And when my now son-in-law graduated from college and moved into his first apartment we gave him a laundry hamper filled with cleaning supplies and pantry staples. He appreciated that gift for sure.


Jen December 17, 2016 at 7:35 am

I am a teacher and receive lots of presents each year. It is very sweet for my students to buy me a present. I like getting the candles because I don’t buy them for myself. The gift cards to restaurants, hand soap, and candy are very nice ,too. However, I am not sure why students buy teachers so many mugs. I got 4 this year. I prefer to use the same stainless steel travel mug every day. I donate the mugs to Goodwill every year, and I’m sure they don’t know what to do with all of the mugs they get either.


LisaC December 19, 2016 at 12:11 pm

Jen, it might be because they think its the nicest or prettiest thing they can find at the dollar store.


Joyce December 17, 2016 at 11:31 am

Last year we requested that our kids not buy anything for us for Christmas, birthdays, etc but instead do something for others, whether that be volunteer time or money in the “kettle”. They could tell us about it or not.
My son pulled all the clothing requests from the tree at the village store. He bought warm hooded sweat shirts for 10 kids. It is the proudest I have ever been of him!


Joyce December 17, 2016 at 11:33 am

Let me add that when I told him how proud I was, he said ” that’s the way you raised me”. Maybe I did something right.


Gina December 18, 2016 at 5:46 am

What a sweet story Joyce! And proud you should be of your thoughtful and kind son!


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