Tuesday, October 25, 2011

A different kind of Gift Box

When you see or hear the words gift box you probably think about a Birthday or Christmas present wrapped up in a box with a nice bow and a card attached.  But the one I refer today is more like a storage box of some kind.  It is sizable, but basic.  There are no frills, unless they are on the inside.  

The gift box I refer to is a place you run to when an unexpected gift giving emergency arises.  If you don't have one of these, you need to get one.  

There are a number of ways to fill one of these boxes.  

1. Hit the post-Christmas sales etc and pick up knick knacks, stationery, basic bath products, gift baskets/boxes/bags and keep them in the box.  If you find yourself without a gift or time to purchase one, you can throw a few things together and create one.  
2. When you go grocery shopping (or you're out and about) look out for items that would make good gifts.  My local supermarket has a small toy section and they often sell small plush toys, Hot Wheels cars and packs of cards at reduced prices.  
3. Maintain a list of friends and family, include their ages and interests.  If you see something you think they will like, buy it, put it in the box, and record on your list that you have the next birthday/Christmas gift for that person done! 

You could also use all three of these ideas to fill your box.  Click here for a few more tips on how to maintain a "present box."

There are many ways to maintain a system of "preparedness" for gift giving.  My sister, wrote the name of a family member on small zip-lock bags.  As she purchased a gift for them, she put it in the bag.  She could easily see the gifts she needed to buy when looking at the empty bags.  She also had a calendar marked with birthdays/ anniversaries and other special occasions posted near her "present box" and made sure gifts were purchased ahead of time.  

I like to have a list of friends and family, as well as keeping an eye out for gifts, I keep a few extra bits and pieces just in case (my memory ain't so good).   
Beside my present box I have a card box.  I keep it stocked with a range of occasion specific, general and blank cards that I can pull out whenever the need arises.  I don't often get to the shops, so I prefer to do my "card shopping" in bulk and then choose a card from my box for specific people or purposes.  Sometimes this isn't appropriate, but it is helpful to have them on hand.  
I understand that we don't always have the money or storage space to keep boxes of bath salts, cards, toy cars and handkerchiefs under the bed, but it does reduce my stress levels knowing that I am less likely to get caught out.