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November 24, 2009


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Don't forget to make sure you don't give the gift back to the person who gave it to you!

I've never had the opportunity to regift, but I'm not against the idea if you are truly finding the right regift for the right person.

My husband's side of the family generally gives/receives gift cards and cash. It's easy. Once in a while, my mother-in-law buys me clothing, but she always includes the gift receipt (which I've needed a couple of times due to sizing). She is the best person to receive clothing from since she takes the gift receiver's taste into account instead of just her own. I also hate shopping, so I appreciate the effort. :)

My side of the family goes out of their way to get gifts they know you would's harder to shop for, but the gifts are definitely from the heart. I know my mom finally accepted my husband when she started asking me what my husband would like for Christmas instead of just gifting him random "male" stuff (like the camping tv/ husband will probably never sleep outside in his life).

All our family appreciates time together more than anything, so gatherings happen more frequently than gift giving. If I ever have received a regift, I haven't noticed, so obviously it must have been a good gift for me. :)

I usually donate unwanted gifts to Goodwill--does that count as "re-gifting"? Because the gifts I receive that I don't want are usually nothing that anyone would want. So I wouldn't want to inflict them on my family/friends either.

For example 1) clothing (wrong size, weird color, weird style. And I can't return it because you thriftily bought it at a discount store months ago--Dad, I'm talking about you!), 2) horrible food (fruitcake anyone?), 3) perfume/lotion gift sets (nobody actually wants these, ever), 4) smelly candles and cutesy "decor" items (usually a re-gift already), 5) joke gifts (why would anyone want these?), 6) regional "art" (ink drawings of barns and kittens, or anything with a wolf, an eagle, and/or a U.S. flag printed/embroidered/decopaged on it), and 7) holiday-themed sweaters.

There is one type of "re-gift" that I love getting, though: something cool from your past that you want to share with me. For example, an elderly lady friend of my family gave me several souvenier coffee spoons that she had collected during the 1950's--because she was downsizing and remembered how much I liked them when I was a kid and visited her house. Old books that my Dad read when he was little, a much-used chess set from my chess-obsessed friend, an arrowhead my Uncle found in Patagonia 50 years ago, and old photos.

I don't re-gift a lot, but definitely have done it. My family plays a game(s) on Christmas to "win" generic gifts we all bring. Every year a few of the gifts are re-gifts (including some more fun, junk gifts that purposefully get put in for fun), but we usually don't care because usually they are nice re-gifts.

My husband and I just got married, and a few of the duplicate gifts are being re-gifted...which is very helpful, because our Christmas budget is super-tight.

Remember to write down who gave you the gift you would like to "re-gift" at a later date.It would be quite embarrassing for all involved if the "re-gift" was eventually given back to the original giver!!

I'm a regifter. I'm semi-minimialist, so a lot of the time people give me things and I just don't want or need them. It is a good feeling knowing that I can make someone else happy by giving that gift to them so they can use it!

I have re-gifted and I know that I have been the recipient of some re-gifts as well. How did I know?

1. After my first child was born, I received a nightgown several sizes too large with no tags. It had holes cut out for breastfeeding (which I wasn't going to do and everyone knew it) from my sister-in-law who, coincidentally, wore that size and who had also just had a baby whom she breast-fed.

2. I received a sweater several sizes too large from a different sister-in-law and when I went to Sears to return it, it was worth about $1.50.

3. Another sister-in-law, after I presented her with a birthday gift, proceeded to say, "Oh, wait! I have a birthday gift for you as well!" She then went into a hall closet and rummaged around for about 5 minutes, and after that she went up to her bedroom and handed me a re-gift (ugly, defective votive candle holders...they looked like the designs were imprinted upside-down. They looked like something you would get as a free gift after placing an order from a catalog, or whatever). They were presented in an unremarkable, crumpled gift bag (no card included).

There are many other instances, just too many to mention. Just think about whether or not your gift will be recognized as a re-gift and realize that the recipient will not be thinking too highly of you!

Wow...just wow. That's beyond tacky.

If I had any idea who you really were, I would totally send you a better gift just to make up for that amount of tacky. Just wow...

Hi, Crystal (Et Al)-- You are too kind.

Needless to say, I have conveniently 'forgotten' to exchange birthday gifts with them for several years now. Guess I have since learned how to be tacky...:)

I'd "forget" to exhange gifts with them as well...everybody has their limits.

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