I'm an only child
other - details please
So I mentioned to my brother that maybe we should stop buying birthday gifts for each other this year. He's turning 35 this month, and we have a younger sister. We don't buy gifts for DH's siblings, and he thinks it's nuts that we buy gifts for my siblings. Neither of mine are married or even in a relationship.
Anyhow, my brother sent me a long email, and said that he doesn't want to give up the birthday gift exchange. He thinks that I probably get gifts from DH (I do), the kids (I don't), the MIL (some years yes, but lately it's just a card) and he only gets gifts from the siblings and our parents. Um, he's 35 ... but whatever.
Here's what gets to me - we have to send each other lists. Nobody wants to guess what someone wants, everyone wants a list emailed out to choose from. I'm to the point that I think that if you want something, buy it yourself. There's no thought involved in gift buying. And it's getting to me.
So I thought I'd ask here (as opposed to any of the other boards I post on, I'm most active here, and this is a varied board). Do you exchange birthday gifts with your sibling(s)?
Last edited by coolmama72; 02-23-2010 at 01:01 PM.
Gwen, Mommy to Andrew, Jordan, Natalie & Jack
My blog - all things family, photography and crafty
Yes. We do exchange gifts. We don't give each other lists though. That wouldn't be any fun. We did however stop doing b-day parties for adults.
Sadie- mommy to Ruthie & Randy
No, I have 2 sisters and one brother. We stopped doing gifts in college. Why exactly are you wanting to stop giving gifts? Is it to save money or is it because of the lists? Maybe scaling back what you do would be a good solution. If you are only giving gifts because of your brother, tell him he's old enough to make his own friends so maybe he should hit them up for birthday presents. Then proceed to send your brother a basket of jelly or something to let him know that any birthday gifts from you from here on out are going to be homemade and not from any list.
Well, We do exchange gifts with my husbands sister but not his brother or our SIL. If we lived closer to them, we probably still would exchange gifts with them. We do exchange gifts with my sister, but she is only 16. My family exchanges gifts for everything though, even anniversaries.
As for lists, well everyone always wants to know "what do you want" and I usually refuse to tell people that, because I like a surprise.
I don't plan to stop anytime soon. I enjoy giving ( and recieving ) gifts and its fun.
We stopped exchanging gifts a while ago. Occassionally I will get something for my brother or sister but it is never from a list. It is usually something I make or something I got cheap when I was out and sort of just jumped at me.
As you get older, it just seems funny to me to always expect a gift. Yes I have a husband and kids and I do not usually get gifts from them.
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I'm the other.
I only have a brother and sil. We do exchange gifts. Birthdays are generally whatever we come up with. Christmas, we ask each other if there is ideas. Doesn't have to be specific, but we're younger and money is tighter. (I'm 29, brother is 27 and sil is 25. Hubby is 37.) We're at a "useful gifts" stage right now as a result. But we do try to throw in some surprises with the gifts and also not just give one specific thing to be bought.
Now hubby's family. They don't exchange Christmas gifts. DH's brother only gets a card for his birthday and DH's sister gets a trinket usually. I generally leave it up to him. He's not really close to his siblings (in age, location or interaction). His siblings are older then him- Sister is 6 years older and brother is 13 years older.
I don't get gifts from my children but I do from hubby.
I'm other as well. I stopped exchanging bday gifts with my older sister years ago, but my younger sister, we continued exchanging gifts until she passed. My older sister quit caring about gifts, but it was really important to my younger sister as that was one of her love languages. To me, lists are silly and leads to expectations of one getting what's on the list. And if it leads to expectations, then I think they need to get it themselves or ask parents for those types of gifts. I prefer and give more either homemade gifts or gifts that are more personal than practical. Dh's family does not exchange gifts more because he's now on the other side of the pond and just not as fun. When visiting, we do exchange gifts more for the "I love you just cuz" rather than for a holiday.
As for the kids, they exchange to each other as well as to us for birthdays and Christmas. But we make sure they understand that the important part is just being there and celebrating the person rather than the gift. They've also picked up the urge to make something for them and invest the time by them thinking of the other person while creating their gifts instead of spending money they have so little of.
My advice... make something for your brother through your talents in photography and scrapping. He seems to appreciate when he's thought of and wants to be celebrated for being part of your awesome family.
DD Twins: 8/4/09 @ 35 Wks - No NICU, woot!
I exchange with my sister...there are only 2 of us, and she is still young, single, financially funded by my parents, esentially
With DH's siblings and SO's (he has 3 sibs, all of which are married), it is not really spelled out, and I think it needs to be. the ones who live out of town (his sis and hubby, his bro and wife) we don't exchange with, and I mentioned to his brother and SIL once about not worrying about it anymore since it is so much money and difficult with the ones who live out of town. Since we weren't (we meaning any of the sibs) consistently giving to everyone, I thought it better to do no one. I meant to email SIL who lives in town this info, since she is the one who tends to buy for every little darn thing (but she goes cheapskate on our Christmas grab bag exchange). Meanwhile, I forgot to tell them that we are no longer doing adult bday gifts (and that her other bro was fine with this too), and she got DH a $25 gift card to best buy. Argh! Now if I send an email saying "no more bday gifts" I look like a jerk since she just got him one...but she owes us, I guess, since she only bought me a $25 gift for our $50 xmas gift exchange.
There's 4 children in my family, and we don't buy gifts for eachother. My twin sister and I do exchange gifts, and usually go shopping on our birthday. I always send them all a card, and usually get one from each of them for my birthday.
We don't exchange gifts - or cards for dh's family. There's 9 of them, (not including who's married) and it's pretty impossible to remember everybody's!
For Christmas we buy for kids only (they have to be under 1 , and then the adults all draw a name. We have a $30 limit and put our lists in with our name.
No my stepsisters are disowned and my older brother is on the road all the time. My younger brother feels it is his right to get a gift (he's special needs and 20) so he doesn't get anything.
DH is an only child so no siblings. But his parents have been best friends with another couple since DH was a kid and their kids are kind of like DHs siblings so we buy for them.
Daughter Rileigh Ann arriving January 2012