Holiday Gift Giving

                Starting the day after Thanksgiving, and let’s be honest, often before Thanksgiving, people get all in a frenzy about the holidays and holiday shopping.  We want to get everyone the right present at the right price.

                This is exactly the reason Black Friday is such a big deal.  The chance to get expensive items for some percent off - of course we are going to go for it.  What if you don’t have the money to spend all this money on presents, especially for every one of your best friends? Yes, I know, everyone you meet is your best friend.  Or wait, is that just me?

                Anyway, we are on a college budget here.  We should not have to spend the money on getting every single person in our circle presents. The list would go on and on - our housemates, our major friends, our party friends.  Hey, let’s tack on that homeless person we passed on our way to that party Friday night.  That would rack up quite a credit card bill.  Beyond the price, finding the right present for each person would cause quite the headache.

                Avoiding all this seems like our best bet.  This may be easier for those of us, ahem, me, who are a bit Grinch-like in our holiday ways.  Finding the right presents for our family members, who we are obligated by blood to get presents for, is enough of a headache... and wallet-ache.  Adding in presents for friends? No way, nu-uh, out of the question.

                If you’re not so Grinch-like and want to shower all your pretty friends with the presents they deserve, just remember, you’re on a college budget.  There is not a rule that says you have to spend outrageous amounts of money on them.  Make it special, make it cheap.

  There are several ways to do this.  Suggest a Secret Santa within a group of your friends.  Put all your names into a hat, each pull out one, and buy a present for that one person.  That way, everyone gets a present and everyone gives a present, totally fair.  If you want to make it even easier, just put a $5-10 cap on the gifts.  Fair and fun!

                If you want to go all out and get more than one person a gift, be crafty!  Everyone knows homemade presents come from the heart and therefore mean more.  Hit up Joanne’s or Wal-Mart and buy some supplies.  Make your friends Christmas ornaments.  Or even simpler, buy a bulk amount of stockings and write their names on them in fancy calligraphy.  The possibilities are endless when it comes to arts and crafts, and the price is right, too.

                Though, if presents are not your thing, but you still want to show your friends they are special to you, especially during the holiday season, there is always food.  A common love among, well, everyone, food has the power to bring people together.  Suggest a pot luck dinner with your friends.  Have everyone bring a dish to pass and get ready for a wide range of goodies to enjoy.

                The holiday season is a great way to show your friends they are special to you. Just remember, we are in college, on a college budget.  Be realistic when discussing the idea of presents with people.  Put a cap on the amount you can spend.  Suggest group activities.  Oh, and have a happy holiday!

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