Rules for Christmas gift giving sanity for friends and family

Christmas time is also a time for the expressions of good cheer, when even the staunchest Scrooge capitulates into acts of kindness and good-will. Make sure your giving of gifts fits the occasion.

image via Flickr/Javier Gutierrez-Acedo

SAN DIEGO, December 6, 2016 – Christmas is a most wonderful time of the year! It is a time for gathering with loved ones, enjoying get-togethers with friends, decorating the Christmas tree, stringing Christmas lights, baking Christmas treats, and giving and receiving Christmas gifts.

Retailers, and our economy, also love Christmas. It is one of the greatest times for shopper spending. Gallup reports that “Americans’ 2015 holiday spending intentions finds U.S. adults planning to spend $830 on Christmas gifts this year, on average.” According to the group that is up from the $720 recorded a year ago.

image via Flickr/Charley Lhasa
image via Flickr/Charley Lhasa

According to a recent survey by the American Research Group, Inc., it is estimated that Americans plan to spend an average of $929 for gifts, $47 above 2015 spending.

The research findings also point out that 36% of those surveyed will shop by catalogue, and a whopping 55% will shop by using the Internet, an all time survey high.

Not only are Americans planning on spending more on Christmas gifts this year, their buying habits are also undergoing significant changes–boding increased competition for the retail industry.

image via wikimedia
image via wikimedia

Buying gifts can bring both joy at the prospect of pleasing family and friends, and increased stress over the daunting task of knowing exactly which gift to buy for whom.

To help simplify and de-stress gifts this year, Woman’s Day recommends 10 Holiday Gift-Giving Rules:

  1.  Review your gift list every year. Determine the nature of relationships and where they currently stand.
  2.  Know when a practical present will be appreciated. Sometimes a thoughtful gift will be most appreciated.
  3. Resist the urge to match spending. Ensure that gift purchases are driven by thoughtfulness and not pressure.
  4. Always include a gift receipt. There are times a well-meant gift does not fit to size or is not liked by the recipient.
  5. But for the couple, instead of the two individuals. A gift suitable for an engaged or married couple can add joy to their lives together.
  6. image via Unsplash/Ben WhiteFollow workplace gift-giving policies. If gift-giving is practiced, thoughtful yet inexpensive thank-you gifts can take the form of a special lunch or a homemade Christmas treat.
  7. Double their usual tip. Treating those who make life easier, such as a hair dresser, dog walker, manicurist and more, nothing communicates their value than being appreciated for what services they perform.
  8. Respond honestly to a surprise gift. Being genuine in response to a thoughtful surprise gift, is a great way to show appreciation.
  9. Re-gift the right way. With over 50% of Americans believing re-gifting is proper, be certain that it is generic enough to meet their standards and tastes; and consider gifts such as wine, candles, picture
    frames and the like.
  10. Christmas is a most wonderful time of the year, and gift-giving adds to the excitement of celebrating.

The practice of gift-giving began with the birth of Christ, as he was given great gifts of Frankincense, Gold and Myrrh from the Wise Men.

Celebrating the birthday of baby Jesus, being grateful to God for giving this great gift to our world, we celebrate the gift of each other in the mutual exchange of gratitude.

As Christmas season is enjoyed and celebrated, may it bring peace, love and light into our hearts.

Until next time, enjoy the ride in good health!

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Laurie Edwards-Tate
Laurie Edwards-Tate, MS, President and Founder of At Your Home Familycare in San Diego, California, was among the first to recognize the growing need for services allowing individuals to remain independent created by the aging of America including the Baby Boomer generation, now being called the “Silver Tsunami.” It is the Baby Boomers who are rapidly redefining what aging and growing older means and looks like in America today. Now celebrating its 28th year in business, AYHF is among San Diego County’s Top Women-Owned Businesses and Fastest Growing Businesses, and enjoys a reputation for upholding the highest possible standards among its employees and its emphasis on customer service. Edwards-Tate is a valued contributor to the public dialogue on current issues and challenges in the home care industry, and serves in leadership roles on the Home Care Aide Association of America Advisory Board and Private Duty Home Care Association Advisory Board, as well as the Home Care Aide Steering Committee of the California Association for Health Services at Home. Edwards-Tate is frequently interviewed in the media on healthy aging, caregiving, and health care topics. Follow Laurie and AYHF at; on Facebook at, and Twitter at @AYHFamilycare