Tuesday, November 18, 2008

To Gift or Regift, That Is The Question

Now that I've confessed to giving the occassional used gift, let me admit to the occassional regift.

Rest assured that I have NEVER regifted anything from anyone who could ever possibly read this blog. You are all wonderful, thoughtful people who gift the perfect gifts.

That said, I'm not above regifting something if it doesn't suit me AND I know someone it would suit. I think the first time this happened it was really more of a trade. My brother has had, in the past, a tendency to give my sister and I the exact same gift, though often in a different color. Most years that was just fine. For example the year we both got kitchenaid mixers...that was fine (OK, I'm not sure that happened but someone gave me a mixer). Or the year we both got floor lamps, probably from cabelas. I'm still using mine.

But in the early years, it didn't always go so well. One year Pam (the aforementioned sister) and I opened Stan's (the aforementioned brother) gifts simultaneously. I had received a yellow sweater. Pam got a fuschia one. If I wear yellow it looks like I have end stage liver disease. Pam in any shade of pink is redundant. So, we just traded sweaters right there. No one was offended. I wore that thing forever. It was bullet proof acrylic. No namby-pamby handwashery necessary. Throw it in with a load of jeans, hang it up or leave it wadded on the floor. It wasn't going to mildew as there is no known lifeform that eats acrylic. Eventually the pills were larger than the contiguous sweater bits and I must have chucked it (these days I would have used it to scrub stubborn stains off the floor or something but that was before my recycling days).

Sometimes I'll get scented candles from co-workers that smell like butt. I regift them to people I don't like much or give them to a thrift store.

I think regifting is fine and I know I've been a recipient. I don't mind at all as long as it's something I can use or send on.

On the theme of gifting...if the friends and relatives could give me SOME idea what they would like this year, that would be super.


Angelamusings said...

Hi Jill and Jill's Faithful Reader(s),

I have followed your discussion of gifting/regifting/retrogifting. Perfectly timed for this time of year. I've found that my goal in giving gifts is to give things that are consumable in some way: food, candles (esp. the butt-smelling ones. How offended I was to learn you didn't care for that butt-smelling candle I gave you), stationery, etc. Certainly after reading your blog/Laurie's blog, I will look more closely at things like packaging and such now. But my favorite gift of them all: time. Just someone spending time with me, taking me out for a hot chocolate on my birthday or treating me to a matinee at a movie. Last Christmas, I sort of "begged off" Christmas altogether because of personal stuff I was dealing with, but I'm afraid my desire NOT to bog down people with "stuff stuff stuff" lingers. Here's a question for your crew: Is it possible to celebrate Christmas/solstice/birthdays without giving gifts and NOT hurt people's feelings? Are there any alternatives to giving "stuff" that people have thunk up? Angela (who thinks Jill is, as our friend Brian says, "priceless, simply priceless.")

Jill said...

thanks for the comment ange! I'll have to blog about our alternative gifts/systems now