Christmas, a day most of us look forward to all year long. Staring on December first, families will pull out their advent calendars and build excitement as they draw closer and closer to the most wonderful day of the year. The house is smelling festive, the decor looks fabulous and the tree has an abundance of gifts under its branches all neatly wrapped in holiday-inspired paper. You can see several presents that have your name on them, and you are bursting with anticipation wondering what awesome gift is waiting just for little ole you.
Christmas morning has finally arrived and you are electrified with joy as you rip open your gifts. And then your heart sinks, it’s something you either hate or don’t want. Unless someone really knows you, chances are they will select a random gift that may or may not resonate with you. Gosh, not another romance novel, or a music CD from a band you don’t like, or what’s up with the jar of wrinkle cream or useless figurine or tickets to a movie you don’t want to see.
As many eyes may be on you as you open your gift, your reaction should still be one of graciousness and gratitude. Appreciate the intention behind these well-meaning gifts and thank the giver. But don’t panic, there are lots of guilt-free things you can do with the gifts you will really never use.
Repurpose it! Perhaps you can find an alternative use for your gift. Instead of a fruit bowl, maybe you can use it for your yarn, potpourri, pet food, a bird feeder, office knickknacks, or a plant. Use your imagination.
Exchange it! If at all possible, take the gift back to the store where it was purchased. Most likely you will not have a receipt, but maybe you can exchange the gift for items you need or get a store credit for future use.
Regift it! There will always be someone who will appreciate an item more than you, so don’t feel bad about regifting. Ideally, keep track of who gave you this gift, so you don’t end up giving it back to that person or someone in your circle of friends.
Donate it! There is always a need for household items and clothing at your local charity. Or maybe a family member, neighbor or coworker would value the item in question.
Sell it! There are copious places online to sell new, used, or unwanted items. You may be surprised just how quickly your unwanted gift sells.
Swap party! Invite a group of friends, family, neighbors or fellow church members over for a new gift exchange. Create guidelines so everyone knows that the gift must be new and no one can take offense if they see an item they gave as a gift. This way items will go home with someone who likes and appreciates it. No waste, no closet clutter and no hard feelings.
Barter! Maybe you know someone who will do something for you in exchange for the gift item. Perhaps someone can cut your hair or shovel your sidewalks and will take the gift as payment