Buy nothing for Christmas

‘I rarely follow it 100%, but I do believe what people want for Christmas, or as gifts in general, are not consumer objects, but experiences and acts that require the giving of our time, not our money.Here’s my post from last year about some rules I made up for gifts:

So this year I made two rules:

  1. To buy only experiences. Tickets to plays, events, massages, meals, things that they’ll experience and own as a memory instead of as a thing. Perhaps I can baby or pet sit for friends, gifts that really could be useful to them. This also has the benefit of low environmental impact if you’re into that sort of thing.
  2. To make things for people. If I make it with my own hands then it’s impossible to get at the GAP, or at their local mall and as ugly or fragile as it might be, it will be personal. It will will represent more of the the most precious thing i have, my time, than anything I could buy.

I’m actually thinking this year to write a letter – not an email, but a letter, to various folks I care about. Will be more personal than anything else I suspect they’ll get this year.

Full post on Buy nothing for Christmas .

2 Responses to “Buy nothing for Christmas”

  1. Mary

    A useful thing to keep in mind about offering to babysit and similar things is that if you give people an IOU for it, a surprising number of people feel rather trapped trying to cash it in because the “um, at Christmas you said blah and so now it’s September…” conversation feels like begging to them.

    So if you have self effacing friends and family, it is good to remember to commit to following through on the offer without requiring them to do the bulk of the negotiating about when you can actually do what you said.


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