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Friday, October 10, 2008

Stress-Free Christmas Part 4

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Now don't get me wrong.... Some of the most memorable gifts I ever received were handmade items from students. I still have a couple of items that came from the Secret Santa Shop at our school too. There are sentimental gifts that are truly given from the heart. I'm not discounting those for one second!

If you're planning to buy a small gift for your child's teacher, what do you get? What do you give their Sunday School teachers or the librarians who lead children's story time?

The most useful gifts I ever received from students were stationery (personalized or not) and gift cards. Teachers shop at the mall, eat at restaurants, and shop online at What a blessing it is to be able to go out for dinner instead of cooking! And let me assure you that the thoughtful student (along with his/her parents) is certainly a positive topic of discussion over that meal!

So what if you didn't plan to spend enough to buy a gift card for a whole meal? Or what if you don't want to give a $5 mall gift certificate? I remember the year that one of my student's parents called the other parents and organized a class gift. They gave me a $100 mall gift certificate. That was a HUGE gift for a young teacher! But I also had 30 students in my class. That means that each one contributed around $3. Even if your child attends a small school, you could organize a class gift for his/her teacher. With only 10 kids in a class, you could still get a $25-50 gift card for Applebee's.

I'm considering doing this for Emma's preschool teacher. She takes TONS of pictures through the school year, and I know that she organizes them into scrapbooks for the kids to keep at the end of the year. So I'm sure she spends a great deal of money getting pictures developed. So maybe a Wal-Mart card would be appropriate for her.

Now is the time to start thinking about teacher gifts, as well as the other small gifts that are usually put off until the last minute. If you want to organize a class gift for the teacher, start talking to other parents and see if they would be interested.


Are you ready to organize your gift list? Are you ready to plan ahead instead of grabbing whatever catches your attention at the mall? This week I sat down with the list of people who we buy Christmas gifts for. I use the gift list from FlyLady's Holiday Control Journal (HERE) I print multiple copies of page 17, punch them with a three-hole punch, and put them in a three-ring binder. Write each person's name and their budgeted gift amount on the list, and you'll have a better chance to stay organized and within budget!