| |You don’t need to be rich to give a great gift
It’s no secret the holidays are an expensive time of year. Many of us overspend without questioning if we really need to.
To help keep your holiday spending down, we’ve asked FCNB staff to share a story about their favourite inexpensive gift, and what made it special. The trend was clear: the thought behind the gifts left a much more lasting impression than the money spent on them. Read on for some ideas and stories to warm your heart!
Manon – Photo collection
“A collection of photos of happy times with people that I hold dear, and photos of my puppies! What makes this present so special are the memories that warm my heart each time I took at them.”
Caterina – Plants
“A nice, inexpensive gift is a plant, especially if you grow it at home from a seedling. My cousin once grew a bunch of lemon trees from seeds, and gave them as gifts for Christmas. My mom had hers for years.”
Alicia – Portrait of her daughter
“The best ‘inexpensive gift’ I received was a portrait painted by a close friend. It’s a beautiful watercolour of my daughter that now hangs on her bedroom wall. It was thoughtful, personal and makes me smile every time I look at it.”
Erin – Christmas plate
“A small Christmas plate. It’s not bone china or porcelain. It isn’t a family heirloom, passed from one generation to another. It’s not a valuable antique. Rather, it’s a dollar store product, probably purchased for $3. It was given to me by my son when he was three. Even as a toddler, he was fiercely independent and stubborn with an aptitude for temper tantrums and prone to feet stomping. At three, he thought the world should cater to his whims and needs. So it came as a surprise when, 16 years ago, there was a gift under the Christmas tree conspicuous for the amount of scotch tape used. And it had MOM on the gift tag. Inside was the dollar store plate – a small gift that signified to a harried mom that a tender, loving heart existed inside that three-year-old boy.”
Jackie – Holiday baking
“We can always use baked goods around the house during the holidays, for enjoying with family or for when unexpected guests drop in.”
Diane – Handmade doll clothes
“When I was a little girl, my mom used to make Barbie doll clothes for my sister and me for Christmas. She often made copies of our own clothes, or she would take leftover fabric from her New Year’s Ball gown to make similar gown for our dolls. My sister and I loved those clothes and our Barbie dolls had the best wardrobe in the whole neighbourhood. It was only years later that I understood the true value of this handmade gift, when I decided to continue the tradition by sewing doll clothes for my own daughters. That’s when I realized how finicky and time-consuming it was to make such clothes. It’s a true labour of love.”
Alaina – Homemade mittens
“I love receiving homemade gifts. Growing up, each year I looked forward to a homemade pair of mittens from my grandmother. I have carried on the tradition and now make my niece and nephew something homemade each year – mittens, hats, slippers, Christmas ornaments, etc. I also send my sister’s family a Christmas cookie parcel. The whole family loves it and looks forward to it each year. It doesn’t cost much money, and they love snacking on their favourites and trying out some of the new cookies I send each year.”
Check out our new holiday budget to help you manage your spending this holiday season.
The holidays are supposed to be about enjoying time with your friends and family, not stressing about how much money you’ve spent or the size of your credit card bill. The stories that our staff have shared may help you keep your holiday spending in perspective. What was your favourite gift?