Gifting Memories

Getting organized and keeping up with everyday life can be hard, right? When you factor in all of the additional things to do, places to go, and people to see during the holiday season, it can easily become overwhelming and stressful! Am I right?!  Who has felt extra stress over the past month or so?  Trust me, I understand.

Let’s take a minute to put things into perspective and look at things a little differently than usual. We are creatures of habit, are we not? Did you know that 95% of what we do in a day is out of habit?  95%… that’s astounding to me!  Too often we don’t stop and ask ourselves WHY we are doing what we do.  And holiday traditions are no different.

Here is a tradition to rethink this year… and yes I realize I’m about to mess with traditions – but go with me on this:  Stop Buying STUFF!

But wait, isn’t that what the holidays are about?!  We know better than that, don’t we?  I’m not saying that we shouldn’t buy gifts for our loved ones, BUT I do believe we should rethink the way we’re going about it.  Here are some items on my don’t buy list:

  • Knickknacks (those little things that sit around and collect dust),
  • lotion (since this is an easy go-to gift people often end up with A LOT of it and it doesn’t get used),
  • gift sets (the only reason I add gift sets is because I’ve seen so many of them – unopened & covered in years of dust – in my clients’ homes),
  • gag gifts (they’re funny for a minute, and then what do you do with it?!),
  • something that will break that day or week (I’m especially thinking of kid’s toys),
  • anything just because it’s a good deal (it may be a good price, but if it doesn’t fit the recipient’s needs it’s just clutter).

So, you’re probably thinking the Grinch has taken over my blog at this point!  A list of gifts NOT TO BUY?!  OK, hear me out… Here’s what I prefer to give in lieu of stuff:  EXPERIENCES.  They create memories that are much longer lasting in a person’s mind than any bargain item will be.  And if you’re buying for a whole family, an “experience” is the perfect “family gift”!

It’s time for YOU to decide what would be a nicer present to receive:  The “STUFF” I talked about  (ie. a bath & body set, knickknacks, a bargain crockpot, another sweater) OR one of these memory making experiences:

  • Event tickets (concerts, symphony, plays),
  • Ticketmaster gift card (so they can choose the event),
  • Movie tickets,
  • Zoo or aquarium passes,
  • Restaurants/coffee shop/ice-cream shop gift cards,
  • Amusement park gift certificates,
  • State park passes (for the outdoorsy people on your list),
  • Babysitting ‘coupons’,
  • Gas gift card (ok, it’s not exactly an experience, but could be a very helpful gift),
  • Grocery gift card (again this can be very useful for families),
  • Entertainment complex (in our area for example, we have Spooky Nook Sports, The Coliseum, & Sky Zone),
  • Ice/roller skating,
  • Bowling

Hopefully, you’ll agree that receiving an experience is WAY better than receiving something that has the potential to turn into clutter.  Use your imagination and create a memory that will stick with your friends and family (even long after they ring in the New Year).

Wishing you a season of memories, laughter, and love!

(Originally written by Bobbie for www.FamiliesWithPurpose.com – stop by and check them out!)

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