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Go-to gifts for the holidays

Miranda Irwin, Staff Writer

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When the holidays come around everyone seems to have their go-to gifts that they resort to every year. The holiday season is stressful and people find themselves rushing to the mall and local toy stores at the last minute to purchase gifts for their friends and family. Having go-to gifts tend to make this time of year easier and more enjoyable for everyone.

The holiday season is typically thought of as the time period from the end of November all the way through December. Despite the endless amounts of food and gifts that come with this time of year, the period leading up to it can become stressful very quickly.

“December is so crowded with finals and holiday related things that finding time to go to the mall and shop for gifts is hard and takes too much time,” said junior Andrew Wach.

A common conception is that this holiday stress comes from having to do so many things in such a short amount of time that it becomes overwhelming. People are expected to visit friends and family, attend holiday-themed parties, and celebrate by buying gifts for one another.

In certain holiday traditions like “Secret Santa” or similar gift exchanges between friends, family, or coworkers it is difficult to know what to give. Often people find themselves having to buy gifts for people that they don’t necessarily know on a personal level.

“Giving gifts is hard especially in things like ‘Secret Santa’ gift exchanges. It’s hard to know what people like,” said junior Raine Kerhin.

Finding the right gift for the right person requires knowing the person well enough to know what sort of things they like.

“I had to do ‘Secret Santa’ at work and didn’t know a coworker well enough to know what to give so I ended up just getting them a gift card,” explained Wach.

Whether gifts are given to close friends or the rarely spoken to co-worker everyone generally has gift ideas that they will immediately go to in a rushed situation.

Students were asked the question, “Do you have any go-to gifts during the holiday season?”

About 48 percent of the students asked this question answered yes they do have go-to gifts and 52 percent answered no they do not.

Students who answered yes were then asked to give examples of what their go-to gifts are.

“Fuzzy socks, and candy are my go-to gifts,” said junior Freida Freeman.

There was a seemingly similar trend in answers when Kerhin stated, “My go-to gift is always a scarf or jewelry. There’s no sizing and it’s just the right price.”

The common go-to gifts among students were items such as sweets, accessories, and gift cards. These objects also have one thing in common: they are cheap. All of these items can be purchased for under $15 if found at the right place.

Gifts can be expensive especially when having to purchase so many. Specifically among teenagers who generally do not have a steady source of income money can become scarce.

“Most people don’t want to spend much money or put in an effort when buying gifts which is why people usually have certain go-to gifts,” said junior Daryush Shahid.

Approximately $602.1 billion is spent during the winter holidays according to the National Retail Federation’s research accumulated over 2012 and 2013.

More specific research from the American Research Group suggests that the average American family spends approximately $854 on holiday gifts according to their 2012 poll.

Also based on this research, from 2002 to 2007 the average American family spent an average of $954 on gifts during the holiday season. However, in 2008 when the Recession hit the average spending rate of families dropped to $431.

Eventually the prices made their way back up over the years coming $854 according to the 2012 consensus.

Go-to gifts do not only save money but they also save time and energy which are very much needed during the hectic holiday season. However, instead of the resorting to the same gifts every year some students gave suggestions for more creative yet simple gift that people can buy or make.

“More personal and thoughtful gifts are things like gift baskets because they are creative and require you to put in an effort to make,” said Shahid.

Gifts that are handmade are often seen as more thoughtful. They are special and specific to the person receiving the gift. They provide a way to be creative and feel satisfied with the person’s reaction when receiving their gift.

“Some more thoughtful gifts are photo collages. At Target you can easily find little picture frames that you can decorate and put a picture or a quote in. It’s thoughtful and simple. Also phone cases are a gift that can never go wrong,” said Wach.

Go-to gifts are a way to avoid stress and be time efficient. On the other hand, making gifts or being more creative shows more thought and care.

Whether there proves to be time to waste on gifts this year or not go-to gifts are things that all people can use and are a good way to make the holiday season enjoyable for everyone.

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About the Writer
Miranda Irwin, Staff Writer
Miranda is a senior and an active dancer. (Visited 3 times today)
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Go-to gifts for the holidays