I want to show everyone in my life that I care about them, but it’s financially unsustainable for me to give them everything they deserve right now. What are some nice things I can do for my friends that don’t cost too much money? – Sustainable Gifter
Dear Sustainable Gifter,
I think it’s amazing that you want to do nice things for the people that you love. I think it’s even more amazing that you are mature enough to realize that you shouldn’t throw your personal finances away to show someone love.
Before I give any advice, I want to say that you shouldn’t feel bad about not being able to give the people in your life the things they deserve. When I graduate, I dream of giving my mama a personal luxury that I simply can’t afford. Sure, if I saved I’d be able to, but I know that the gift would be tainted because my mama knew I was suffering to get it. The people you love want to see you happy and comfortable. They’d hate to know that any gift that you give them came at a great personal sacrifice.
If you want to physically get a certain gift, I suggest going to Goodwill or other secondhand stores. Despite “Thrift Shop” coming out in 2012, I think that people still don’t utilize Goodwill and other secondhand resources. When I buy secondhand, I make sure that the quality of the items is good — and most of the time, the item is practically brand new. I realize that sometimes going to Goodwill is a hit or a miss, but for the most part, I leave Goodwill satisfied.
Don’t ignore making gifts for the people that you care about. My mama makes gifts that are ridiculously expensive. It’s funny, but a lot of my old band t-shirts, makeup bags and even mugs have been made or decorated by my mama. My mama genuinely enjoys making the gifts and would often spend her leisure time watching TV and making presents for people. Maybe if you try your hand at a craft, you’d find calmness in it as well.
If you are more culinarily inclined, I suggest making your friends a sweet treat. Personally, I’d be thrilled if I was asked to spend time with someone and was surprised by the food. I think that making someone a home-cooked meal is one of the best (and cheapest!) ways to show your appreciation. After all, food is the quickest way to the heart. As long as you make sure that you aren’t paying for veal and choose something inexpensive like a boxed cake, you’ll be able to give your loved ones something that is both inexpensive and tasty.
Even though these aren’t the exact gifts that you want to give your loved ones, I’m beyond sure that they will be grateful for them. I know it’s cliche, but sometimes it’s not the gift that you give to people, but the thought that counts. Good luck, Sustainable Gifter! I believe in you.
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