How to Buy Christmas Gifts for Large Families

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Christmas gift shopping is stressful for some each year because everyone wants to give the perfect gift without going broke. This is particularly a concern when you're a part of a large family. Here are some gift giving ideas to help ease the strain of buying Christmas gifts for a large family.

  • Reduce the number of gifts you need to buy by doing Secret Santas among family members. Decide if the secret Santa is adults only, adults plus children or family units. Write down the names of all family members who wish to participate, place the names in a container, have family members select a name, write down who has chosen whom and select a dollar limit amount for the gift.

  • Purchase gifts only for the children in the family. Most parents are more focused on their children having gifts and enjoying Christmas than themselves. Ask for general interests or a list from the parents before shopping to help you shop for the children in the family.

  • Make and give homemade Christmas gifts that include cookies, soaps, candles, scrapbooks, family recipe books, family websites, Christmas CDs, family portraits and sewn or knitted items such as blankets, scarves or hats. Homemade gifts take more time than buying a gift, so plan ahead and allow enough time to create and package the gifts.

  • Shop sales for gifts throughout the year and keep a running list of what has been purchased. Request gift receipts at the time of purchase especially for clothing.

  • Trade crafts with your crafty friends to give your family different homemade gifts. If you bake and someone else knits then trade a dozen cookies for a scarf.

  • Give each family unit a family gift such as gift cards to a general merchandise store like Target or Wal-Mart to a favorite restaurant. Family gifts can also be gift baskets filled with personalized items such as bubble bath or edible items like cookies. Give a family gift that each family member finds useful like a DVD or board game.

Tips & Warnings

  • Check out craft stores for homemade gift ideas.
  • Designate a day when the family gets together like a holiday (Thanksgiving) to select names for the Secret Santa name pulling.
  • Include out-of-town family members in the Secret Santa process by allowing them to choose someone to select a name for them.

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