Here’s What To Do With Them
We had a fabulous Christmas. All the important things came together:
- Our family is well
- The children were not home but we were able to speak to one another on the phone
- The food was delicious and abundant
- The mood was jolly and full of great cheer
- The weather was pleasant
- Santa stopped by and left just the right amount under the tree
So, Christmas 2012 is now in the memory banks and will have a few firsts:
- The first time neither of our children were home
- The first time I didn’t cook a turkey
- The first time I didn’t wrap a single gift
So, yes it was a different sort of season and my family and I were very distracted by other events taking place around us, but it was still a very good year.
As I talked with friends and family over the holiday, the discussion turned to gifts. Gifts given and gifts received. As lazy conversations will do, we began to laugh about the crazy gifts that each of us have received over the years. And there have been some nutty ones.
This leads to the obvious question:
What to do with unwanted gifts?
Here are some suggestions that I found by asking around and by searching the internet:
- Donate that stuff you don’t want. A terrific organization, The Giving Effect, has partnered with 1,613 different organizations to distribute items to people in need. You enter you zip code to find a charity near you that needs what you have. Even left over party supplies can find a use as kennel bowls for rescue dogs. Goodwill or the Salvation Army also accept donations of unwanted Christmas cheer.
- Return the gift. You can try to find the store where the item was purchased, but if not, try to return it at a store where they carry that same item so that it can be resold. If you’re working without a receipt, you’re at the mercy of the store’s return policy. Keep your attitude pleasant and appeal to the employee’s sympathy and you’ll get points and certainly more help than if you’re belligerent and a bully about returning something that might not have even come from that store. If one store won’t take the return, another might, so be persistent.
- Sell the gift. If you’ve got a bunch of stuff to get rid of, Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) may be your best route. All you have to do is get an FBA account and for a small fee, Amazon will sell your items, ship them and provide any necessary customer service. The fees seem to be pretty reasonable but you can avoid them if you just sell through Amazon and ship them yourself.
- If you get a gift card you can’t use or don’t want, there are online sites like Plastic Jungle that provide a marketplace for those cards. You’ll lose money, that’s the downside, but if the card was not going to be used anyway, then…
There are some pretty good options for those unwanted gifts. Who knows, maybe there really is someone who would be a good fit for some of the crazy stuff that seemed like a good idea at the time.
What about you, was Santa good to you? Do you have gifts you’d like to move along to someone else?
Photo by Jessica Watkins DeWinter
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