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Ovation: Gift Cards Can Work Like Christmas Clubs!


I like to think that I’m a very organized gift-giver.  For many years I carried a day planner with me at all times.  I was lost without it.  It contained my calendar and my address book.  Each year, right after Thanksgiving, I would buy a refill packet for the coming year’s calendar and I would set to re-writing all the birthdays and anniversaries of the people who I know and love on the appropriate dates for the next year.

Eventually, I moved my calendar to a Palm Pilot and I thought I was on the cutting edge of technology.  Of course, I carried it inside of my Day Planner and never used it.  It didn’t make sense to write on a Palm Pilot with a stylus when a ball point pen wrote perfectly well in my Day Planner.

For many years, I fought the urge to go digital.  For the longest time I even refused to pay bills via the internet, choosing instead to retain control of when my money left my account by actually signing physical checks.  When I purchased my first Smart Phone and was able to “sync” my calendar with the one on my laptop, I thought I was finished with my Day Planner for certain.  I set it aside, in the back of a drawer at my desk, knowing in my heart that we had not parted ways forever.

Later, I learned how to set “reminders”!  So, now all of my electronics beep exactly four days before a gift or card should be mailed.  I particularly enjoy giving gift cards.  Years ago, I came to the realization that one can purchase gift cards at any time and they rarely, if ever, expire.  Ever since that day, I have purchased at least one gift card (usually two) each payday in anticipation of birthdays and Christmas.  I collect Toys-R-Us gift cards to give to all the children on my list and a collection of restaurant, iTunes and Starbucks cards is assembled for adults on the list.

Most of the folks enjoy receiving gift cards … particularly the children.  Of course, their parents aren’t always thrilled with the fact that they have to take the children shopping until I remind them that I could ship a drum set or an accordion and then a trip to the toy store doesn’t seem like such a bad idea.

I think my gift card system works great!  When Christmas finally arrives, the majority of my gifts are already paid for.  Gift cards work for me like a Christmas Club account used to work in the olden days.  It’s like making Christmas payments all year long!

What do you think of Gift Cards?  Do you like to receive them?  Give them?

Copyright © 2012

From → Ovations

  1. Roly permalink

    I use electronic gift cards that I personalise with a picture and/or a poem. I also make up a family chrstmas card 🙂


  2. Oddly enough, I don’t mind getting them–because I’m rather hard to shop for since I really don’t want much–but I don’t like giving them.

    I like the idea of finding a nice gift that suits someone perfectly.


    • I feel the same. A gift card from a new or different restaurant encourages me to try something that I haven’t done before. Plus, I, too, am difficult to shop for. Also like you, I’d rather find just the perfect gift for everyone on my gift list. Unfortunatly, history has proven that I suck at this. So gift cards ensure that they get something that they want or need … in the right size, in the right color, or with their favorite side items. 😉


  3. Like Roly, I’ve used personalized gift cards with a new baby’s pictue on it for the new parents. In general, I love giving gift cards especially when the recipient doesn’t have a specific request for their birthday. I try to find fun ways to wrap them: a movie ticket gift card goes in a popcorn tub with some candy, Starbucks card goes in a Starbuck’s coffee cup filled with coffee beans etc.


  4. Great idea, I need to do this. I’m always running around at the last minute to get a gift card. I should just stock pile a few! Thanks for the tip


  5. What a great idea for spreading out the Christmas payments. With all my children living away from me, postage to send gifts has become exorbitant, so this would help with this problem too!


Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Tips Series: Budget tips for Christmas spending |
  2. Ovation: With Only 97 Days Until Christmas, It’s Really Not Too Early To Layaway. |

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