Dirty Santa gift ideas

oakleyokDecember 2, 2010

Well bless my family's heart. We'll spend Christmas at my son's house, and my DIL's family (dad, mom, sister, sis's husband and teen daughter) will all be there.

On a side note, I can't tell you how nice it is going from a teeny tiny family (us) to a large extended one where both families are extremely close & spend all holidays together!

I'm the only one who has never played Dirty Santa. We do "Secret Santa" with each other and I mentioned to them how one day before I kick the bucket I want to play Dirty Santa, darnit! lol. It's because I don't work outside the home and they do, hence they get to play the game at work.

My DIL sent me an email telling me my son wanted to play the game, along with doing the secret santa too. How sweet of him to think of me!

The limit on gifts for SS will be $10.00.

So...can anyone suggest a fun gift that both male and females would fight over? LOL

I feel like a little kid again! :)

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Boopadaboo

Is dirty santa the same as Pollyanna? I have never heard of dirty santa.

    Bookmark   December 2, 2010 at 6:26AM
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judithn

Dirty Santa? I thought maybe you wanted to surprise someone with a naughty/erotic xmas gift but obviously that's not the case. Please explain..

    Bookmark   December 2, 2010 at 7:29AM
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oakleyok

LOL. Okay, from my understanding it's played like this.

You have let's say...10 people.

Each person draws a number from 1 to 10.

#1 gets to pick out an unwrapped gift first. They open it. I'm not sure if #1 can exchange it for another unwrapped gift though, someone will have to fill us in.

#2 and so on, they can either take the openend gift from #1 or choose another unwrapped gift under the tree.

Ditto for the rest of the people in order of their numbers.

Basically the higher the number you draw the better.

We're not going to do gag gifts, these will be fun and decent. Some give wine, ornaments, etc.

    Bookmark   December 2, 2010 at 9:18AM
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polly929

I really thought she was talking about naughty/erotic gifts too, and thought...gee wouldn't that be awkward with her son's in-laws there? LOL- smacking head! Now I've played that before, but I've never heard it called that before.

    Bookmark   December 2, 2010 at 10:10AM
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tinam61

Never done this with family or at work (although hubby's work does have a big to-do and they play games), but have done it at Christmas parties. Some ideas:

candles
picture frame
calendar
good chocolates
flavored/fancy coffees
car wash gift certificates

it is harder when it's unisex. Most times we do a female gift and a male gift.

We've been married 28 years and have never spent a Christmas just the two of us. We always have our time alone - but always have celebrated with family and/or friends. Oakley, are any of your parents/inlaws living? No family in your area? We have friends (older than us) who would be alone for Thanksgiving at time as their children are married and live away from here. But rather than do that, they open their home to extended family and friends - especially those who might not have somewhere else to go.

My FIL passed away several years ago, but he and my MIL and my parents knew each other before hubby and I wed. After that, we just kind of became one big family and included each family at gatherings. My MIL came here with all my family for Thanksgiving. Sometimes her MAN FRIEND comes too! HA!

tina

    Bookmark   December 2, 2010 at 10:15AM
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Sueb20

Ooooh... I was thinking erotic, too. LOL. We call this a Yankee Swap. We do it every year with our dinner club, which is about 14 people, and it's always fun. Some people bring normal stuff, but some people re-gift something from the holidays (we do it in Jan.) and others just bring funny gifts in general. A $10 limit is tricky, but I like tina's ideas above. One year I got a book called "The Book of Birthdays" which I enjoyed. Kind of a fun book for anyone -- everyone at the party was looking up their birthdays.

Here is a link that might be useful: birthday book

    Bookmark   December 2, 2010 at 10:59AM
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tuesday_2008

Oakley - we did that at work last year instead of secret santa and name drawing. It was a big hit! Our limit was $20-25 and the fun part was seeing the creativity of gifts and the uniqueness of what each person was interested in. We had a country ham (very popular), nice picture frames, gift cards, small digital album, a "movie night basket", pocket knife, hand-tools, cozy throw. People can get very creative with the Christmas sales and come up with some nice uni-sex gifts. The movie night basket was a cute plastic tub (cheap) with two small fleece stadium throws - $3 at Garden Ridge, a couple of popular DVD's (reduced price), microwave popcorn, and I think some chocolates or something like that.

I am modeling my gift this year along the same lines, but with a coffee theme. It will include a large can of good old Maxwell House coffee, a nice tin of hot chocolate mix, an instant cappucino mix, a cheap pack of filters, two cute mugs (not Christmas), and some Ghirardelli chocolates. Now I am on the prowl for a cheap but decent looking tray to present this on and will wrap it in see-thru wrap. Will this interest everyone? No, but I know my co-workers and I think it will interest those who have family in for the holidays, are on a budget, etc. All useful (but enjoyable) items.

Tina gave you some good ideas for your $10 list. I will also add unique Christmas ornaments. There is nothing more exciting than getting out your decorations next year and finding those new ones you forgot about that you bought on clearance after the holiday or received as a gift. Another thing - fast-food gift cards. I know - gift cards are being used too much, but believe it or not - they guys love them. One year my DD told me to get some for her DH (stocking stuffers), because he usually takes his lunch, but occasionally gets caught out in the field at lunch time with no cash. It was always nice to have the fast-food cards, even if it was just to use the drive-thru for a shake or soft-drink.

We have a large family get-together with DH's family and the ladies all do an ornament exchange ($5.00) in the form of a game where it gets exchanged several times. One of the nieces reads a game poem tht give the directions of the passes (example, pass right, pass left, take ornament from person two places to your right, etc.). My 28 year old DD was talking at Thanksgiving about the gorgeous "blingy silver star" type ornament that got away. All the 20-somethings gals worked hard on that one!
The guys just go to the basement and play Rook while we are doing this.

Oakley, It will be fun!

Tuesday

    Bookmark   December 2, 2010 at 11:16AM
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deedee99

We do this in my family. When we are together on Thanksgiving we pick a tile out of the scrabble game and everyone who want to participate finds a gift starting with the letter that is picked. Our limit is $20. This year it is A. My family leans towards organic/garden accessory type gifts, so I'm sure there will be an amethyst or two. One year it was S and the iron garden snail was a huge hit!
We never had an official name for this exchange, but your dirty santa post definetly caught my attention!

    Bookmark   December 2, 2010 at 12:40PM
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oakleyok

There are various names for Dirty Santa. White Elephant, Chinese something or other, Yankee Swap, etc. Here in OK. it's just Dirty Santa.

Tina, I'm the only family member in the state now. Excluding my children, their families and dh. Mom lives with my brother in MO. My other relatives are all in Virginia where my parents were born and raised.

My dh's family is small too, but his mom will be with his brother this year at Christmas. We had her for TG.

I'm sooo enjoying having a large family gathering now for birthday parties and the holidays. Of course I love to give, but it's been a lot of fun receiving from so many people. I'm not used to this! lol

Right now I'm leaning towards one of those inexpensive electronic hand held games. Something other than poker.

I did find a down-filled glove/ice scraper at Eddie Bauer which is really neat. I think we can go up to $15 if we want.

    Bookmark   December 2, 2010 at 1:03PM
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oakleyok

I love it! Below is the link to what I bought.

I got the Buffalo Check color. If I end up with this I'll be pleased!

Here is a link that might be useful: Mitt

    Bookmark   December 2, 2010 at 2:48PM
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tuesday_2008

Oakley - call your Christmas gift exchange whatever!!
I want one of those mitts! I'll get DH one......

I am one of those people who can never find their ice scraper. Have you ever scraped frost with a credit card when you are running late?? That's me!

Now I am rethinking my office gift. Let's see....I could do one of those mitts, a nice scraper with the snow brush on the other end, and maybe a can of de-icer.

Hmmm...thinking out loud.

Tuesday

    Bookmark   December 2, 2010 at 3:03PM
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oakleyok

Tuesday, I sure wouldn't mind one for myself. This morning I had to get the ice scraper out even though I warmed my car before I left. I keep it in the glove compartment. And I love the Buffalo Check which is my favorite pattern on material! I was surprised at all the colors they offered.

Not a bad price either. I also bought my dh a pair of wool gloves from them ($16.00) because he loves his wool socks in the winter and has to leave for work at 7am when it's freezing, windshield frosted or snow on it.

They have some mitts at Amazon also, not the same one's, but the Eddie Bauer mitts seem to be well made from looking at the other's. I'm sure anyone would love the gift if it gets cold there, man or woman!

    Bookmark   December 2, 2010 at 5:53PM
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oakleyok

Thank you Sue! I ordered the Birthday Book for my DIL's mother. She'll love it!

    Bookmark   December 2, 2010 at 6:03PM
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patser

iTunes gift cards are a hit in all exchanges I've participated in.

    Bookmark   December 3, 2010 at 4:55AM
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work_in_progress_08

Last year was the first time we tried a swap, and did mostly unisex gifts. I think our limit last year was $20. Here are a few of the items I can remember:

Windshield Wonder (an As Seen on TV) - most popular
leopard print snuggie
DVD - can't remember which movie
funny books
Starbucks GC
auto coin separater
travel mugs - hot & cold
iTunes GC
ear buds (universal) for cell phones, iPods, etc.
breathalizer type gadget
glove & sock warmers

We had so much fun last year, that we're doing it again this year! This year the limit is $15. BB&B has lots of small items (unisex) that are perfect for this type of swap. I have already purchased all of our swap gifts, picked some up this past summer when I would see something that would work.

    Bookmark   December 4, 2010 at 10:15AM
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ellendi

We are doing the Yankee Swap at work. But the nice part is that you are NOT to buy anything, but to wrap sosmething you already have in your house. I am not sure if some people will bring ridiculous things to get a laugh, or will everyone bring something that someone might actually like? I am bringing a digital key chain that I bought for my daughter and she never opened.

    Bookmark   December 4, 2010 at 10:54AM
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olliesmom

Yep, Oakley's right, around here, I have only heard it called Dirty Santa, but, it has only been in recent years that you play it with "good gifts". When I very first played, it was like ellendi played it, with things from home that are kind of funny, but useable. They are both fun ways to play, but, the things you bring from home, can be HILARIOUS!

Last time I played that way, I got stuck with a "Donut Pillow" (you know, for hemmoroids, or other rear-end ailments) LOL! Was really fun!

    Bookmark   December 4, 2010 at 11:05AM
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oakleyok

Just in case I fall hard on my tush like I did a few years ago, aint no way I'd give away my donut pillow. LOL

    Bookmark   December 4, 2010 at 7:31PM
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yayagal

We call it Yankee Swap too and do it every year. I search hard to get the best item and price for my 25.00 so very often it's really something more expensive but I got it on sale. I will say that lottery tickets and gift certificates to Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts are always welcome. Also Xmas themed gifts are good too as people are in the mood. No matter what you get the spirit of fun is there and it's a blast. One year I bought a crazy silly gift and threw it in as an extra, boy did that get swapped around a lot, every one was passing it off to another lol.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2010 at 10:23AM
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CaroleOH

We used to do this at work too. We called it a White Elephant gift exchange. Ours varied from year to year, sometimes we bought things, but the most fun was when we wrapped up something weird or strange that we had around the house - usually gifts that you've received from others that just made you scratch your head - what were they thinking.

The all time favorite gift that was fought over was a black velvet Elvis wall hanging. It ended up in our VP's hands and he proudly hung it in his office - as he was the "King" of the office after all.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2010 at 3:51PM
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busybee3

if you have a really nice kitchen store near you, there are tons of nice gadgets which both male(depending!)and females might like. last year i pick up a really great ladle for a yankee swap and it was a hit!!
dvds and nyt best seller books are good choices too.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2010 at 8:48AM
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sweeby

The bottles have always been a big hit in ours -- Guess we're just a bunch o' drunks...

Also lottery tickets, gift cards (why *is* that?)

    Bookmark   December 8, 2010 at 10:30PM
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