Tag: Gifts

Let’s Do Away With ‘Secret Santa’!

Secret Santa

Earlier this week we pulled names for the Secret Santa party next week at work. I, for one, can’t stand this archaic ritual but complied anyway as a “team player”. The gift giving limit is $20 and all gifts will be exchanged next week before Christmas.

The problem I have with this whole ‘Secret Santa’ business is that it just seems so contrived. What’s the point anyway? Why should we be forced to give gifts to people we barely know? And furthermore, why should we have to pay for it out of our own pocket when the company is “forcing” us to participate?

Here are some of my grievances:

What if I don’t know the person whose name I pulled? Or worse yet, what if I don’t like them? I am not best friends with everyone I work with. There are some people I’m not particularly fond of & I don’t like the idea that I now have to buy them a present just because it’s Christmas. What about the people I don’t know too well? Am I supposed to just guess at getting them a gift? Sure, everyone likes gift cards but what type of gift card should I get? There are just too many options for someone I don’t even know. Gift giving is supposed to be from the heart not from a corporate mandate.

What if I don’t celebrate Christmas? Not everyone believes in ole Jolly St. Nicholas in which case why should they be heavily encouraged to participate. It’s awkward enough to have to announce your religious beliefs at work let alone defend why you choose not to participate in a seemingly fun holiday office party. Or maybe it’s not even about religion. I may have personal reasons not to celebrate this time of year. Perhaps I’ve lost a loved one, am away from my family during the holidays or just don’t care about Christmas at all. I should not be forced into showing any holiday cheer.

Wasting time having a party during work hours, but the work still needs to get done. Even if I end up having fun with this whole little ‘Secret Santa’ thing, I’m still responsible for getting my work done once the party is over. Exchanging presents, eating & mingling takes up precious work time and I don’t want to feel stressed over all the work I’ll be left to do once this involuntary party is over.

Do you have ‘Secret Santa’ parties at your job? What happens if you don’t want to participate? What types of gifts are usually given? Do you have fun or do you secretly despise them? I’d love to hear in the comments section below –

Secret Santa 1

Where Did Father’s Day Come From?

Father’s Day is around the corner so I thought I’d dedicate this week’s posts to that topic. You may not like everything I write but I hope that it at least gives you something to think about. Last year I wrote about my opposition to celebrating mothers on Father’s Day. This year I plan to write something equally thought-provoking, so I hope you stay tuned!

Since it’s the beginning of the week, I think that I’ll start with the origin of Father’s Day:

Father’s Day started in 1910 by a woman named Sonora Smart Dodd, who was often referred to as the “Mother of Father’s Day.” She was 16 years old when her mother died in 1898, leaving her father William Jackson Smart to raise Sonora and her five younger brothers on a remote farm in Eastern Washington. In 1909 when Sonora heard a Mother’s Day sermon at Central United Methodist Church in Spokane, she was inspired to propose that Father’s receive equal recognition. The following year with the assistance of Reverend Dr. Conrad Bluhm, her pastor at Old Centenary Presbyterian Church (now Knox Presbyterian Church), Sonora took the idea to the Spokane YMCA. The Spokane YMCA, along with the Ministerial Alliance, endorsed Dodd’s idea and helped it spread by celebrating the first Father’s Day in 1910. Sonora suggested her father’s birthday, June 5th, be established as the day to honor all Father’s. However, the pastors wanted more time to prepare, so June 19, 1910 was designated as the first Father’s Day and sermons honoring fathers were presented throughout the city. It was years, however, before Father’s Day gained national prominence. In 1924 President Calvin Coolidge recognized Father’s Day and urged the states to do likewise. In 1966, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed a proclamation calling for the third Sunday in June to be recognized as Father’s Day and requested that flags to be flown that day on all government buildings. President Richard M. Nixon signed a proclamation in 1972, permanently observing Father’s Day on the third Sunday in June. So voila, here we are!

So what should you get your dad? Some of the more traditional gifts include: watches, techy gadgets, shaving sets, new shoes, a pair of cufflinks, a BBQ set, tickets to a sporting event, a wallet, power tools or the good old standby – cologne.

Celebrating fathers is expensive. This year it is estimated that the average gift for dads will be about $113. Total spending for the holiday may reach up to $12.5 billion*. Whew! That’s a lot of money. And to think I’ll be spending at least one millionth of that on my own dad this year so you can’t say I’m not doing my own part to help the economy 🙂

And so the countdown begins! Get your gifts together because Father’s Day is in less than 1 week!


*The National Retail Federation

Is He Cheap Or Does He Just Have Bad Taste?

I’ve gotten some pretty good gifts from my ex-boyfriends and the men that I’ve dated. Everything from clothes to jewelry & everything in between. I’ve mostly enjoyed them not because they were free but because they were things that either reflected my personal taste or were things I actually needed. With that said, I’ve also received some pretty bad gifts ranging from household appliances to gift cards (more about why I think that’s a bad gift in another post).

Now it’s not so much that the gifts themselves were horrible, it’s the fact that it seems as if the men who gave them to me didn’t put much effort or thought into what they gave me. It’s as if they didn’t know me very well since they were gifts that I didn’t really want or even like.

Some gifts that were given to me were just in poor taste. Who gives a woman dishes & kitchen appliances as a birthday gift? And tacky ones at that? This screams tasteless to me. What about a used gift? I’ve gotten some of those before – the wrapper was gone, the edges were already crinkled or there was already some “mysterious” stain on the gift. What is that about? This makes me think that the men who gave me these gifts were just plain cheap. Too cheap to buy me something new or original. They know that they have to buy a gift but they don’t want to invest their money in getting something nice for me. I think a lot of men try to cut corners by getting “imitation” gifts. Surely, some of you women have received these gifts. If you don’t think so, just grab a magnet & test that ‘so-called’ solid gold jewelry of yours.

I thought the whole purpose of a gift was for the recipient to enjoy their gift. Yes, gift giving is about thought. But men, next time please think of what I’d like not what you’d like me to have.