Greetings! I’ve just completed a day of some of the best research for my blog and I hope it brings you at minimum as much joy as it brought me. I took a lovely walk with my friend and explored a new neighborhood, discovering a cute Little Lending Library on the way. A bit more about that later. I’m probably more excited about this post than any other in the series. I feel like this when I write each of them though, so I will let you be the judge.
For those of you who’ve already read parts 1 and/ or 2, you may want to skip the next paragraph and get straight to the body of this post. I’ve kept the intro the same throughout the series to maintain continuity and flow.
So Christmas is coming and while the goose may be getting fat, your budget is looking pretty slim. Perhaps you have finances to spare, but are looking to take the focus off spending. Maybe you want to pass down something more sentimental than the most current video game. Whatever your reason, I’m taking a break from grace blogging to give you free ideas that can help you with your family gift giving. This is the 2nd of a multi-part series. Not being a fan of exhausting introductory paragraphs when all that’s really wanted is the meat of a blog, I’m going to get right to it with the following:
Let’s put some ideas under the proverbial tree shall we? Maybe something to stuff the stocking? The decision is yours and the ideas are here:
- Take a look at a book: Reading opens up so many doors. The more you read, the more possibilities are open to you. Looking to give new books to those you love without having to spend? Simply take some books you no longer want and go to your nearest Little Lending Library for exchange. If unsure where to find one, locations can be found at https://littlefreelibrary.org. I’ve enclosed a photo of some book trading that occurred on my playdate with my friend and son. I found the variety very impressive!
- Dress their dreams: Perfect for young children, this may be one of the simplest gifts to give. Place some of those glamour clothes of yesteryear in a decorative box, basket, or trunk for a ready made dress up kit. Add in unwanted accessories and/or make your own. Think 10 year old prom dresses, millennial New Years glasses, glittery jackets ala shoulder pads, tattered tiaras, worn out ties, mismatched socks, and expired work gear…the list is as endless as the possibilities.
- Give them real estate: I know this seems a crazy way to save money, but hear me out. This one is for teens or young adults living at home. Begin by paying close attention to a hobby or interest the young person is cultivating. Remember, while getting ready to enter the adult world it’s also important for them to learn all aspects of responsibility. You can nurture both the hobby and responsibility by giving them real estate, no matter if you are living in a trailer or on a homestead, whether you are buying or renting. For example, if you have a young man interested in gardening, create a space outdoors for him to have his own garden spot. No outdoor space? A corner with a window pane, some hooks for potted plants, and a box or cupboard for storage will suffice. For the young woman interested in mechanics, etch out the corner of a garage, give her a section of driveway, or give her the unit parking space for half the week while you take guest parking space. Giving is sacrifice.
- Equip the next genetation: Speaking of older kids, make up a kit to help them in the adult world. Extra tools, kitchen items, first aid and emergency essentials, and garden supplies, are all items which come in handy. If you have 2 or more of something, why not give the extra to someone you love? My grandmother gave me some extra dishes for my hope chest on my 13th birthday. Although becoming a somewhat antiquated tradition, and although I didn’t marry until my late 30’s, the dishes came in handy when I moved out on my own at 19.
- Miscellaneous merriment: Other ideas to put under the tree include:
- homeade bubbles in a container with empty pie tins, empty thread spools, whisks, and cookie cutters
- homemade playdough
- most beloved recipes
- stories you write, fiction and non
- treats made and given out solely at Christmas
This is my 2nd to final post in this series, and my final post will be on the gifts themselves. After prayerfully considering what to say to sum this up, I felt a reminder was important, one I need as well. Our God gave gifts to mankind. He gave them freely out of love and with thought and did not spend a dime to do so. It is society that tells us we must spend. Giving out of a pure heart was God’s original design. That takes a huge burden off my shoulders and replaces it with a sense of comfort and peace. I pray it does for you as well. I hope I was able to give you some ideas that either are useful or sparked some other ideas in you. I give them to you freely as He gave them to me. Shalom.
*Wrapped present photo credit rawpixel @unsplash.com