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Does the Amount you Spend on a Gift Matter?

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With the holidays quickly approaching, I often receive emails from readers regarding whether the amount that you actually spend out-of-pocket on a gift should be given any merit. In other words, if you are able to snag a great gift for super cheap (or even free) after sales and/or coupons, should it be worth any less in the eyes of the gift recipient versus a gift that you paid the full price for?

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Check out this email I received recently…

Have you ever posed the question: what’s more fair…spending the SAME amount on everybody at Christmas or making it LOOK like you spent the same amount on everybody? Or should kids have equal NUMBERS of things to open, regardless of amount spent?

If I received a gift from someone, and I knew they redeemed a deal on it, or got it on Black Friday as a door-buster, I would not be offended if I knew the giver spent much less on me than on someone else (in fact, I’d be proud they were such a smart shopper, and feel flattered that they worked so hard to get my gift at an extra value!). But is it fair to spend less on one child or person?[/h2s_box]

Here are my thoughts…

It shouldn’t matter whether you spend $50 or $2 or whether you get something free! The money that you put into a gift is NOT the important part, what really should count is the thought behind the gift. Plus, doesn’t snagging a great deal or even scoring something for FREE require time and energy?

As harsh as this likely sounds, if someone ever makes you feel uncomfortable regarding a gift you give them or someone else, I would not consider them a “real” friend. We are all here to help one another and our families stretch those hard-earned dollars and save money where we can. There’s absolutely NOTHING wrong with that! In fact, other people should commend you for your efforts.

Being able to pay it forward with free or inexpensive products you receive is NOT something any of you should be embarrassed about. Be proud of the gifts you’re able to give — no matter the cost! 🙂

What are your thoughts on this topic? Do you agree or disagree with me? 

Join The Discussion

Comments 296

  1. Yoli

    It’s definitely the thought that counts, NOT the amount spent. Shame shame shame on that first comment!! And the nonchalant “idc” attitude behind it. It’s the gift of love and being with family that matters to me, not some expensive gift & that’s exactly what I teach my children. They will not be materialistic individuals. Be grateful for what you got, some people in our world don’t get anything at all. 😉

    • Carrie

      I am on the fence between quality of gift vs cost/amount of gifts.

      For kids, more isn’t always better

      One year, my SIL and BIL gave my mother in law money to shop for toys for our kids (grandkids). She wanted them to have lots to open up, so she shopped the discount store and bought a staggering amount of toys.

      Not only was the amount overwhelming to my kids, they were all cheaply made and the majority of them broke before the day was out.

      In that case, a few quality items would have been better and it really doesn’t matter if you get them in super clearance with coupon price or full price as long as the quality is there. That is my opinion.

  2. Pharmchick

    My thoughts: the actual amount you spend on it should never matter but it should look like you put thought into it and that it’s nice. Like if you buy a $5 truck just bc you need to give it as a gift, I don’t think is that good of an idea and it might be better to spend that on like cake mix and frosting and make a pretty cake to enjoy. IMO someone can complain the same amount if you give a gift and it’s cheap as it is if you don’t give any gift. It’s sad that people have to be as shallow as they are but that’s that.

  3. Eve

    I LOVE the thought of getting a gift that was on super sale/ discount AS LONG AS IT IS thoughtful.
    When I open a gift from my girls (23 &21) part of the gift is the story on the sale/ savings- It’s our thing as they know I love a god deal.
    If your budget allows for a small amount to be spent on ea person, I’d rather a $5 gift card(my personal opinion), this can take me soooo far for after xmas shopping. Walgreens, Target… Much better than some $9.99 trio of hot sauces (IJS).
    I actually request GCs from the hubby as I love the “hunt” for after xmas deals. That’s my gift. I get gift cards/$$ and time uninterrupted to “hunt”.

    • Eve

      LOL… ALL that to say YES!!! It certainly is the THOUGHT not the amount. and as couponers we KNOW there is definite WORK that goes into trying to get a deal, the thoughtfulness and value of that is immeasureable.

  4. Lauren

    Everyone says “it’s the thought that counts”, but pulling an item out of your gift closet for a closet for a close friend or family member is not putting in a lot of thought. We’ve probably all gotten gypped in a gift exchange. I really don’t care for them, because I’ve been burned so many times. For example, my stepmother insists on drawing names for my brothers, stepbrothers and me. Spouses are not included and I am the ONLY girl. I agonize over their gifts and that is not reciprocated. Then, my stepmom gives me a couple of things from her gift closet. I do not leave that celebration feeling loved or thought about. I may get good deals, but it is very important to me that my gifts coney the love I feel for the recipient.

  5. Melissa A

    My mom always spends the same on all of the grandkids. Last year my SIL told her specifically what to get her kids (which is no problem). I told my mom it didn’t matter what she got my son. She was able to get my son’s gifts deeply discounted, while she had to pay full price for my niece/nephews gifts. I knew she had spent the same, but the kids didn’t know that. I felt very bad for my nephew, because he noticed what seemed to be a price difference. So, as others have said, it still needs to appear fair – especially when kids are involved.

  6. Cindy

    I agree with Colin 200%. I try to be fair and equal but sometimes life does not work out that way. When you are able to as you say SNAG A GREAT DEAL….its the value not the end cost. However in my eyes, to be thought of, and remembered that’s the gift. My sister asked me to help her husband get a deal on a Keurig. Well whats the surprise in that? So we are spoofing her. Her only son and her only nephew will be getting that Keurig (that Colin helped me snag a deal on) and the boys will get pictures and each take a deal on Shutterfly courtesy of our Colin and make special coffee mugs to go with that Keurig and to top it off we snagged a great deal with the Bet Buy Mystery rewards, combined it with our own rewards, and a welcome back rewards and was able to get her the super duper Keurig box. Hubby going to get a peice of Jewelry and wrap it in the borrowed Keurig Box from the boys and I promise you hands down she will enjoy this gift the most. To see the effort her family went through to surprise her with what she asked for and these two college boys were able to SCORE with help from mom/auntie and Hip2Save. It really is the thought that goes into giving, and the fact that you can get more bang for your buck (especially from college boys) THAT IS WHAT THE HOLIDAYS ARE ALL ABOUT… L O V E.

    • Maria

      Cindy, what an awesome idea! I love the addition of the personalized mugs to go with her brand new Keurig. She will have a lovely Christmas, I’m sure! 🙂

  7. Alma

    I don’t think the price matters. If someone gets you something little, it’s nice to know they were thinking of you and not everyone can afford buying expensive gifts. I am the kind if person that if I have money I don’t care about spending a large amount on someone when I know they will love that gift. If I’m broke I always try to at least get them something small just to let them know I still thought about them.

  8. Lori

    All I can say is I am glad I found this site a couple of years ago because I have been able to get better quality gifts for my money because of all the great deals. THANK YOU COLLIN AND YOUR CREW !!!!

  9. JeannieNY

    I agree that it’s the thought that counts..and I love it when I get homemade things too because it shows that someone put effort into something just for me! That said…I had very wealthy aunts growing up and my family was quite poor..I remember Christmas after Christmas, going to their house and watching my cousins open beautiful and, I imagine, thoughtful gifts…My family, however, was given very strange items..One aunt gave me a bracelet she “found” while coming home from work and said “Here Jeannie..this is an expensive bracelet–maybe your Father can fix it for you” I realize now that I’m thinking they just gave us stuff to make themselves feel better and I’m sorry if I sound ungrateful, but it kind of was crummy!

    • terezia

      I love homemade gifts too. I actually suggested for my family adult secret Santa that we try to make our gifts this year instead of buy. :). Shows more thought and will likely cost less for everyone. I can also relate to the crumby gift thing. I once (years and years ago) received a watch as a gift, I am pretty sure it was a free watch that came from a department store if you bought X amount, the fact that it was free didn’t bother me in the least… what bothered me was that it was a giant MENS watch. My wrists are tiny…tiny tiny, there was no way I could have worn that thing. im pretty sure the watch FACE was bigger than my wrist! Lol. I wasn’t being ungrateful, but in all honesty I would have rather had that friend make dinner for me or do something else nice if they didn’t have money to spend and wanted to get me a gift. I was actually embarrassed to open the gift and confused. I thought it was a joke at first, because they said, “you said you needed a watch” and smiled. I wasn’t sure if it was sarcasm or sincerity. I can laugh about it now, but definitely not something I would want to repeat, for either of us. Lol

  10. Leslie

    I think we put way too much emphasis on the price of something. If someone were to spend $3 on a gift they know I would love, that’s awesome! Whereas if you are a friend and go spend $50 on a gift and you bought it just for the ohhhs and ahhhhs to get attention from others for spending that much and its a gift a friend would know I’d never use. I would much rather have the $3 gift. Basically, it’s definitely the thought. If you know someone well and know what they love, who cares if you spend $1 or $100.

  11. Sonya

    I agree with most posts 115% with one caveat…

    I have no problem getting/giving a gift that was obtained with coupons or for free as long as the gift is of good quality and you consider the person receiving the gift. For example – If I received a gift basket full of gourmet cheese and crackers, I’d be ticked off. Everyone who knows me KNOWS I hate cheese ( yes, I said it – I hate cheese ).

    Just be mindful of the likes and dislikes of the person receiving the gift and you should be fine. If they don’t like that fact that the gift was on sale or free – just shorten your 2015 Christmas list by 1!

  12. Sam

    I think the price doesn’t matter. My family set a limit on gifts, we each draw 1 adult and spend 50$ on then and we buy for the kids at 20$ each. I try to shop for deals to make my money go further to get to the 50 or 20$ limit, but would not be dis satisfied if my family spent only 5$ on a gift worth 50 to me. However we are all bargain shoppers and try to get as much as we can with the $$ we agreed to, so we all get at or near the limit but just get more gifts for the money. I love Christmas time!! Why not make the fun go further by spending less on more? However, if they bought me 3 dollar tree items, and we agreed to 50$ that would no be ok IMO.

  13. barbara

    I have limited who I give gifts too because of the fact that they want more because I probably got it “for free” I don’t get everything free with couponing, but they don’t know cuz they dont coupon. This year my gift totals were $903 before tax and I spent $225 with tax. Good year for me, dont matter what anyone else thinks.

  14. Lori

    This is kinda off subject but … It’s just something that bugs me. You know those people that have to point out if they think something posted isn’t a good deal. How about just don’t take advantage of it and keep your comments to yourself. Why try to rain on Collin and every one else’s parade ??? My dad always said ” if you don’t have anything good to say don’t say anything at all ” just my two cents.

    • Erin

      I think those comments are helpful, especially when the poster indicates where a better deal can be found. I’ve delayed purchases for this reason and scored better deals! I know Collin appreciates it, too, since I’ve seen her post deals that were in the comments.

    • Vivian

      I think when someone points out how they’ve gotten an item cheaper is helpful, so that I know if I should take advantage of a deal or hold off. I do think when people have a comment like “that’s ugly” or something to that effect than that isn’t helpful and they should just keep that to themselves and let everyone make their own opinion.

  15. Toni

    It doesn’t matter how much you pay for a gift, but it should be something you know they will like or use. I know I would rather receive a $2 gift that shows the giver really cared about me than a $50 gift the they bought just to be buying something. The thought put into the gift is more important than the cost. If the recipient doesn’t feel that way, then it doesn’t matter any way.

  16. rebecca

    I agree gifts should come from love. Every year there is someone who gets me a bath set and makes me feel like they don’t know me at all. I always put so much thought in each gift, one of my favorite things is personalize gifts with names or photos. Sometimes I get it free and other times pay full price, but it’s something meaningful from me to them. I Rather have something meaningful than junk.
    Now with kids at least try to make it look fair. My daughter is 3, and the inlaws will get her Toys from dollar tree, but the other grandkids are teens and the inlaws buy them things that are a few hundred dollars. I end up working harder at her presents to keep down the tears when Toys break after an hour.

    • Erin

      Oh those bath salts! When do I have time to soak in a bath, LOL?

  17. Snowflake

    As a child, my brother received a cereal box prize at his class gift exchange ($5-$10 limit) from the kid of a well-to-do family. The other kids had their toy trucksand dolls etc and he had like a plastic spoon. Of course he was disappointed but acted appreciative. We weren’t wealthy but we played by the rules. I could understand if the family fell on hard times but they were obviously well off. Thought it was tacky and rude of the mom to do that (the child didn’t know better). if I were the recipient I wouldn’t care but I don’t think they should do that to a little kid.

  18. Sue

    Ditto to Collin’s comment. I feel the same way, it’s the thought!

  19. Yes

    For a couple of years now every time my SIL get something from me they always respond with and “oh I’m sure this was free” or “can you spend some money for once”. Last year my husband and I purchased a Michael Kors bag and wallet for my MIL, my SIL saw it and said “don’t get too excited it’s probably from an outlet”. And she was actually right it was from the outlet, but we were so hurt. We were so excited for her to get it and feel special.

    • Sonya

      Tell your “Debbie Downer” SIL to keep her comments to herself!!! There is NO SHAME in getting a high-end gift from the outlets. Your intent was good and that’s all that counts.

      I’d rather you get nice gifts at the outlets and have extra money in savings than blow the budget and have HUGE regret when the bills come in January!

    • Darcie

      Horrible! Maybe you could wrap up a lump of coal for her this year 😞. No, but really, that is an example of such ingratitude and unkindness. Hopefully the Christmas spirit will touch her heart this year.

    • Carol_R

      I suggest that this year you make a donation to the Heifer International charity and have it put in her name.

    • Leslie

      What a Bi…! I’m sorry you deal with this each Christmas. That was such an awesome thoughtful gift!

  20. Kara

    My siblings (husband’s also) and I stopped giving gifts all adults in the family and told the grandparents to do the same. I know it’s the time of giving but honestly I prefer to spend the money on my child, nieces, and nephews.
    Reasons why
    *It is the time of year to help the LESS fortunate and to spend TIME with the family. This does not = presents
    *I no longer get the question, “So what would you like?”
    *Stops adults from being disappointed.
    *My husband and I have decided to give each other presents during a different time of year.
    *Keeps the holiday just about the children. You get to see the excitement on their faces when they open the presents.

  21. Megan

    I don’t exchange gifts with that many people, but the ones I do buy for, I make sure to buy something that I think they would really like, not necessarily what I can get for a bargain. I usually put a lot of time and thought into the gift and try to buy things that are unique and not mass-produced. I try to find things from local artisans because that way I know that the recipient isn’t likely to have it already.

  22. laura

    I was reading about someone dealing with gift exchanges. In my husbands family they started a gift exchange for the kids. Before this (and before I had kids but everyone else did) I would go out and buy gifts for all 8 nieces and 1 nephew. That was a lot of money I would spend and a lot of thought went into each one! Then once their kids were a little older they started doing a kids gift exchange (my kids were then only 3 and 6). Last year they decided to do away with the kids gift exchange, however my kids are the youngest at ages 6 and 9 and no one gives them anything. Their kids are now in middle school so they said lets stop the gift exchange. Oh well, kind of sad my little guys don’t get to participate in a gift exchange. That’s what stinks when you have the youngest kids, they don’t get to do a lot of things everyone else was always able to participate in:(

    • Julie

      Sorry you feel like your kids missed out because they are the youngest. You have to change the gift giving sometime. In my husband’s family I was buying for all aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews which totaled to 21 gifts. That’s crazy! That number doesn’t even include my family. I kept begging for us to draw names due to the fact that the family kept growing. Now I only have to buy 4 gifts and can spend more money on my own family. Yes, the youngest are now cheated out of extra gifts but you can’t continue on with tradition forever.

  23. Edy

    I have a daughter that has mild cerebral palsy she is 26 she speaks Spanish and English she can’t walk, we asked her what she wants for Christmas she said nothing! I’m happy that I got my new wheelchair! I have 4 girls 27,26,22,22, to us this year we are just so happy that we have so much and that we have bless so many people by me cuponing for 18 yrs . And that after been diagnosed with cancer myself and had my 2 surgery’s 5 weeks ago that , I’m back to cuponing in order to bless more special kids from her center with lots of stuff from my stockpile

    • Cari M

      Wow, that is really nice of you and your family!

  24. Mady

    In my family, I’m the only one with kids (happy mom of 5!) and am from the lowest income bracket (i stay at home) so no one “expects a lot” from us at Christmas time. However, I am so grateful I can buy a lot of great items using coupons as well as shopping at thrift stores. I’m still able to buy everyone things they love and I look forward to their smiles every year 🙂 Last year I gave everyone a mason jar and a copy of the Christmas Jar book – everyone LOVED it, told anybody that would listen, and have talked about it all year how much change they have accumulated! I bought the books on Amazon with Gift Cards I’d earned on Swagbucks!

  25. teri

    Our family was getting out of control buying for everyone. It became very stressful. it was very hard financially for most of us. Not everyone agreed on a gift exchange, so we put a $10 limit per adult gift. (kids it didnt matter!) I spent $9 on someone and then looked for something for $1.00! It became a lot more fun. You see how far you can get your $10.00 to stretch. Some people find some GREAT clearance finds and so on. There are quite a few homemade gifts. It removes the financial stress , everybody gets gifts, and everybody seems to like it. I know I am soooo happy we did this. It is not about how much money you spend.

    • Jennifer A

      Yes!! We do a family gift exchange and I pore over the clearance racks and websites all year long to find awesome stuff to max out on the $15 limit! It’s gotten to the point that everyone wants me to draw their name, because they know they are going to get a gift that’s worth way more! 🙂

      In addition, I’m a single mom who works full time to support myself and my son, yet I still love to give gifts at Christmas. This year, unfortunately, funds are much tighter than they have been, so I will only be giving my son his “Santa” gifts this year and nobody else. My family understands this completely, and they don’t feel offended by that. Also this year Santa is giving my son four gifts: something he wants, something he needs, something to play with, and something to read.

  26. Terry Carr

    Wow! What a thread…here let me cut to the chase and make it easy on ya’ll. Please don’t spend over $300 on me this year, and if you do, please include a receipt. Thanks in advance. :-)~

  27. Jessica

    I think it is definitely the thought that counts more than the cost!! With that being said though, it was a rule in my house growing up and now in my house that when it comes to the kids, we try to spend the same amount on each. Between my boyfriend and I, we have 4 kids. He is a bit older than me, so my stepdaughters are 12 & 14, and my son and daughter are 3 & 5. The older girls’ gifts tend to be more expensive, so the younger two seem to have more gifts, but theirs are just less expensive. Luckily, the older two understand this. As for my siblings (there’s 5 of us, plus 4 of us w/ significant others, and 3 of us with kids of our own), we were bouncing ideas back and forth as to what we’d get each other: would we draw names? Strictly gift cards to each other? Make a list on Amazon that each of us could view? Finally we decided that instead of buying each other gifts, we are adopting a family in need for Christmas. And all 5 of us are sooooooo excited for it, too!!

    • Carol_R

      Adopting a family in need is a great idea and I applaud you for t hat.

  28. Danette

    Regarding buying for children. When I was a kid over 40 years ago! I can still remember my sister adding up the total price spent on each of us siblings for Christmas. Children must be taught very early to appreciate gifts, say Thank you and NEVER do what she did. My mom still talks about this 40 years later. We grew up on a farm and never had a lot. Fyi the best gift is the Christchild Jesus.

  29. Brande K

    I think that if I’m able to score an item for way less than the original price that just shows I’m a savy shopper and it also frees up other monies I’d like to purchase on other items. My boyfriend and I are always looking for a better deal. .so much so that we make it a competition during the holidays to see who can save the most on their purchase for the other. I tell him that if he can’t find it on sale or reduced for a fabulous price I don’t want it. Perhaps that’s why he’s waiting on that fabulous deal on an engagement ring. He tells me he can’t rush perfection on the perfect ring. I believe that it will happen. We’ve been together almost 4yrs now!

    • Jennifer

      lol! I am waiting for an engagement ring too! My boyfriend took me on our 4 year anniversary in March to look at rings, so now I’m waiting for the proposal! 😉

  30. Carol_R

    I was raised that it’s better to give than receive and that it’s the thought that counts and not the dollar amount.

  31. Carol_R

    Also, any money I was given at Christmas or my birthday was put in the bank. I was allowed to spend a small amount of it. The types of presents kids typically got back then were socks, a winter coat, clothes, and maybe a toy or two. Most of the gifts were practical and were often times handmade. We weren’t poor but middle class. Personally I believe that most kids get way too much stuff and that when you work for it you appreciate it more than if you’re given it.

  32. marissa

    I wish it didn’t matter but it does. :'( I put together a wonderful basket of goodies for my boyfriend’s mom for christmas last year. It was easily worth around $70 or more. But it was all things I had gotten for free from bath and body works or shop small business saturday or things free with coupons. I paid around $5 for it all and was so proud. She immediately said, “Oh, you didn’t pay a thing for this did you. It was all from your coupon scams. Oh, I didn’t mean “scams” and I meant deals.” I went home and cried that night. Breaks my heart every time I think about it. I’m dreading spending christmas with her this year.

    • Carol_R

      I suggest that you just give her a food gift like a tin or cookies with a card.

      • Kristen

        I suggest not giving her another thing. Lol

  33. Mimi

    Hmmm. Christmas is really not about Presents anyway. It’s about Christ! Lots of people have more than enough already. And some don’t. We should be more concerned with the fact that a family member is still alive or a friend. And we get to spend another Christmas With them. Find value in the person and love them. And yes receive graciously always.

    • Guest

      Amen! I mentioned that on another Christmas post and got attacked for getting of the topic. But ummm, “religious or not” it’s the truth!

  34. Guest

    Well, I know this doesn’t answer the question but here’s what happened to me last year:

    I was invited to a Christmas party and I was suppose to take a $10 gift. I lucked up last year and found some really popular expensive ornaments (normally like $30 ornaments) for $9.99! I bought lots of them and I used one as a gift since I spent less than $10. But the whispers and looks I got after someone opened it, “uh..didn’t she know there was a limit?” Someone just came up and flat out asked me if I spent more than $10. And people thinking I’m better than everyone else because I spent more when really I got a great deal. So this is kind of a reversed situation, but does it matter how much you spend??

  35. Nora

    It’s not the amount u spent but the quality if u are smart enough to get something cheap and of good quality people will appreciate it. U don’t want to get something that’s gonna break or ripped the next day…

  36. Christi S

    I don’t care about dollar amounts or if I even get anything! But last year my closest friend gave me a Starbucks gift card and Vodka. I don’t drink coffee or alcohol. It hurt my feelings a little that she didn’t think much about the gift but I’m still thankful for our friendship.

  37. TL

    This year for nieces and nephews, each child is choosing the name of another child. The limit is $10 and the child gets to help choose a gift for their cousin. It used to be way too much when everyone bought for everyone. U know I can get some awesome deals for $10!

  38. Megann

    I give gifts to everyone in my family because I WANT to. Because it makes me HAPPY. I am on a tight budget but I give meaningful (awesome) gifts. I shop all year long looking for sales and buying what I know the people on my list will enjoy. If I have to skip a lunch date to buy for my nieces and nephews then that’s what I do.

    I do not expect or want ANYTHING in return. I spend what I want to. I spend what I can. I help my family buy for those on their lists.

    I am not wealthy. I am in my mid 20s. I work full time. I spend a lot of time thinking of others.

    I donate to toys for tots bc to me the thought of a child not having a Christmas breaks my heart. There is nothing like the joy in a child’s eyes at Christmas.

    Happy holidays all. I hope everyone’s stockings can fill their soul with warmth and joy.

  39. dorfmunder

    Anything given from the heart is an amazing gift! My mom loves her Keurig and I couponed K-Cups for many months so I could give her a HUGE box of them as part of her Christmas. She appreciated my efforts and was so glad to have so many K-Cups in a huge assortment. For my gift she asked if it was okay for her to take the UPC off the box for a rebate and of course I was thrilled for her to get a good deal on my gift. It tickles me to get deals on gifts and I appreciate knowing someone didn’t break the bank to get something for me. 🙂

  40. Olga

    I don’t understand why it’s even a discussion topic. Isn’t it RUDE to let the gift recipient know how much the gift cost? I don’t know about here but where I come from (Ukraine) getting rid of all possible price indicators (like tags and such) is the first rule of gift giving and then you are supposed to be guarding the price info like your life depends on it. 🙂 Isn’t it the same here in USA? Because if it was all about the amount of money you spend people would just exchange cash and it would all boil down to something pointless and ridiculous. 🙂

    So if you’re not supposed to tell the gift recipient the price, even less the discounts you got, how on earth would he or she know?!!!! Which brings me back to where I started: what seems to be the problem here? 🙂

    As for making it fair for kids… I have 3 kids – 2 step sons and 1 daughter (all born and raised here in USA). My step sons are pretty much grown up now but those years when all the 3 of them were still unwrapping gifts in the same room (along with a whole bunch of their cousins), I never saw either of them even making attempts to compare who got how much. They were too excited about the whole gift pile demolition event to even think about it.

    So no offence, guys, but I think Americans live to create problems where they don’t even exist. 🙂 Just relax and enjoy the holidays. 🙂

    • Nl

      Uh, don’t you think you’re generalizing a bit by saying Americans cause prob where they don’t exist? Maybe PEOPLE do that, some people, in all countries.

    • Kristen

      I agree! I’ve been on many short term mission trips to third world countries and do you think those people living under a shack think this is a problem? No, because this isn’t a real problem. Just a topic to get a good argument going is all

  41. Brittany

    Wow. I really can’t believe some of the comments I’m reading. You know what? I know this has nothing to do with the question, but I’m a Nurse. I take care of kids who have cancer. I see heartbreak A LOT in my profession, and it’s especially difficult around the holidays. Some of you need to take a step back and look at the bigger picture here. Is a gift REALLY that important in the grand scheme of things? I’m just happy to have two healthy children, a roof over my head, and a household with two steady incomes in a struggling economy. I just don’t understand why people get so caught up in all of this. If I receive a gift, no matter what the cost, it makes me feel special. The person thought enough of me to get me something. Does my mother in law get my weird and strange gifts that I will never use? Yes. Would I rather her donate the money to charity or spend it on herself? Absolutely. But I would NEVER tell her that because she obviously THOUGHT of me and it means something! I was raised in a poor household and taught to appreciate gifts and be respectful.

    I guess what I’m saying is, look at the bigger picture here. Sure gifts are fun, but it’s not something to be worked up about. Focus on having another day with your loved ones and making memories. There are so many families that would give anything for this. Happy Holidays everyone 🙂

    • Alma


  42. Melanie

    For me perosnally, I don’t know what I would do without this site. Our family has been hit so hard with financial struggles this year. Left and right we have barely kept our heads above water and I know for me, I wouldn’t have been able to get my children much of anything if it weren’t for the great deal scenerios, coupons, alerts, etc that this awesome team puts so much effort into everyday. Hip2save almost feels like a little family to me. We get excited for each other’s good finds and encourage each other and give advice on ways to save. This has been such a blessing and I know that my children will love the cute backpacks I got them at target on clearance and my little girl will love the trunk full of full 90% off clearance costumes and dress up stuff that I acquired for her. They won’t know or realize that I saved hundreds of dollars on these finds. They will just be so grateful that they are getting these fun gifts to open with their family and that would have never been possible withouth this amazing site and all those that contribute. Thank you 🙂

  43. abthomas60

    To me it the thought that count. I fine joy in the smallest things. I taught my children to think about the person before getting something for them. At Christmas time they had to make the gift or buy it for 1.00 when we pulled names.

  44. Joy

    I would so much rather get a small item that means something than a bunch of stuff. When my parents retired 40 years ago I was a newlywed and we agreed to not exchange gifts. Money was tight for all of us. My mom gave us a box of her homemade hard candy that she made every year. Perfect–it was made with love and that’s all that counted to me. We went to my in laws for Christmas dinner and my mother in law announced that my parents didn’t love us because they didn’t give us a gift! I was floored–and deeply hurt. We left their house without dinner and went home and ate leftover Ragu sauce spaghetti. My mom has been gone for 18 years but my mother in law still expects tons of gifts herself; she is so anxious to open everything that she pays no attention to what anyone else gets. At 88 she doesn’t really need anything much so to supplement a few clothing items we get her I get a bunch of stuff at the dollar store. Otherwise she would feel like she didn’t get enough. Sad but that’s just how some people are.

  45. Jeff

    After reading so many of the comments I just hear so much expectation. I think it would be awesome if we could do away with the whole tradition altogether. No gifts…. no expectations…. course human nature being what it is, it would be replaced with other petty concerns that would be just as bad. I give up!

    So here is what I’m going to do, I am resolved to appreciate every gift I get this Christmas, to try not to simply feel a sense of obligation and mentally compare whether my gift measures up, and to really, really enjoy Christmas dinner!!!!!!!

  46. Sam Z

    I completely agree it is not the gift that matters it’s the thought that counts, but what absolutely makes feel rather sad, stressed out, and heart broken is that I have a lot of friends in my life who really make a difference and I like to let them know that by getting them a really nice gifts for Christmas, but every time I’ve done that I seem to get bombarded by everyone saying things like you shouldn’t have done that, or that they can’t except it, and even go out of there way to cause me more pain by telling me what I could’ve or should’ve done with that money. So why is it that people say it’s the thought that counts only when the gift is inexpensive, but if you want to show someone that they are special to you and get them something from your heart all hell breaks loose? How do they think that makes someone feel when they are basically rejecting someone’s gift because of the cost, and they don’t see that you put a lot of thought into it and that there is a lot of love and kindness behind it. I believe if you have feelings in your heart for someone you should be able freely express those feeling no matter how strong they are and people should just say thank you and then keep there mouth shut and accept the gift. That’s what’s wrong with the world people put a price and a label on everything when they should just feel good and thankful that there’s somebody who cares enough about them to do extra kind things for them.

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