Just when I was planning to continue my series about shopping locally and buying used gifts, Angie beat me to it with her “will you buy used gifts?” post on BabyCheapskate. Well, thanks Angie!
For large gifts and for small people, the consensus seems to be that it’s ok to shop on EBay, Craigs List, Berkeley Parents Network (local), freepeats, freecycle, thrift shops or just make arrangements for hand-me-downs.
I truly believe that for a few reasons:
- The packaging on new toys makes me want to pull my hair out. When I do buy new toys, I will often unwrap, detangle, and maybe wash (in the case of jammies) the item before wrapping it or shoving it in a well-recycled gift bag because I hate the pain on Christmas morning of taking 27 minutes to unpackage a new toy. Used stuff doesn’t have that problem.
- Many things can live again. Just because Sunny’s kid is sick of his train table doesn’t make it junk. I was very happy to haul it home, wipe it down, and buy a few new engines (that I unwrapped!) to make this present feel special. This year Holden is getting a large electronic keyboard that we got from Craig and his list for $15. Spare the landfill and reuse!
- Younger kids don’t know the difference. Set the bar low and your kids will grow up appreciating more than just shiny newness.
- I grew up regifting. Hear that mom? I would go from Christmas morning at Dad’s to Christmas day at Mom’s and pass off what I didn’t want. I love a good clothing swap. I treasure hand-me-downs. Keep on giving until the gift reaches someone who will appreciate it!
I’m sure there are many many more reasons and places to buy used. Will you do it? Why or why not?