Shopping for gifts can be fun and joyful or it can be stressful and frustrating. The difference is not simply about when and where you go shopping for your gifts but in how much you actually have to spend. When funds are tight, buying gifts can feel like a heavy burden. It can become difficult to imagine buying an iPad for your teenager when you know that he or she needs gas money or new shoes. So it’s important to keep in mind that giving can still be joyful if what you’re giving is something more practical than fun.
Here are a few gift ideas that may not seem exciting but would still be a blessing to a person who could use them:
•Gas cards for the teenagers
•A grocery store gift card for a friend or relative
•Paying a relative’s cable bill
•Drugstore gift certificates for family members
•Gift certificates at a campus bookstore for students
•Car insurance payment for college students
•Pizza delivery coupons for a college student
•Household or bath essentials
•Batteries or a battery charger
Stockings are also a fantastic place to stuff practical gifts. Items such as chap stick, shaving cream, razors, deodorant, and shampoo and soaps are great choices mixed with fun, but inexpensive, treats…like chocolate! 😉
Children don’t appreciate unwrapping practical gifts quite as much, however. That does not mean, though, that they need to have twenty boxes of toys to open up on Christmas morning. Opt for buying fewer but higher quality toys for younger children. They don’t know how many you wanted to buy them. Buy toys they like but give yourself a limit (either the number of toys or amount you can spend) so that things don’t get out of hand.
What other practical gifts have you given or received for Christmas?
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