Secret Santa

December 11, 2008 at 9:50 PM (Holidays)

I recently signed up to take part in a Secret Santa Christmas gift exchange at work.  This is in addition to the office Chinese Auction that will be taking place.  The minimum dollar amount is $30, which is a bit on the high side but not unbearable.  The papers we drew were ones that each of us filled out, including basic information such as favorite color, shirt sizes, and general likes/dislikes, so even if one were to draw a complete stranger, a gift for that person would not be impossible to come by.  I’ve covertly spoken to other people involved, and without discussing specific items or anything that might in some shape or form give away the “secret” aspect of the Secret Santa it seems that most people are clocking in the $30-$40 range ($35-$45 if shipping is included for some).

I got pretty lucky.  I drew a person whom I have at least a passable working relationship with that shares a number of interests with me.  Does anyone else have trouble keeping their gift giving in check when you know what the “perfect” gift would be, but it is monetarily nonsensical?  The guy I drew is fairly tech savvy and has a significant interest in computers and cars, which essentially meant that anything I thought was cool, perhaps with the exception of Transformers, would make a good gift.  The problem I ran into was this:  all of the cool stuff cost a lot of frickin’ money.  Or at the very least, the item(s) was significantly out of the $30-$40 range.  We’re having a fairly tight and frugal Christmas as it is, so even getting permission to take part in this exchange was an endeavor.

This is not to say there weren’t cheaper alternatives out there.  There were plenty.  But they weren’t as “perfect”.  In the end, I decided to go with a number of smaller items to hit the target dollar amount.  My question to you is this:  would you prefer to get a single item for this type of affair, or would you like the idea of getting multiple smaller items?  I asked myself this question, and I think I’d go with the single item every time.




  1. Blair said,

    I suppose I’d go with the single item too, but in the end it really depends on what the item(s) is(are). I also enjoy getting multiple small but useful gifts.

  2. Aubre said,

    I would have to say the several smaller items. It seems like more bang for the buck. Good luck in Football this week. My husband is also in the finals. Woohoo…$250 on the line.

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