I’ve discussed how I give gifts to my kids’ friends. I have not gone into great detail about family and friends. I have 7 nephews and nieces that live out of town. Since I hate clutter and stuff, I feel it’s important to impress my values on the next generation. I only send them money. I could be “more thoughtful” and send a gift card but I don’t. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve received gift cards and thought, crap, now I have to drive across town and spend money on something. In 2018, I carried around a mystery Target gift card, for 12 months. I was super pissed when I finally thought, I need to spend this to get it out of my wallet, went to Target to find out it was 50 cents! I realize I’m a shopping anomaly, but still.
Sometimes all a kid wants is cash and freedom.
If you want to appear well organized and thoughtful, here’s how you do it…
- Make a list – This is seriously the hardest part. While making this list update all of their addresses. Once you have a list with addresses, it takes mere seconds to update it when they move. I have a few roaming college nieces, I leave those cards blank until the week before I send them. Really think broad, who do you always forget, who should you be sending a birthday card to but forget or don’t have the time to go to the store, etc.
- Schedule it – Use your phone calendar or paper calendar to schedule the birthdays. I have alarms set for 1 week prior to their actual birthday.
- Buy stamps – buy more than you think you’ll need. Make sure they are “Forever” stamps.
- Buy a box of cards – My box of cards from Walmart was $2 for 12 cards. You can’t beat that. (Target does not have boxes of birthday cards, I found this out when I was trying to spend my mystery gift card.) Dollar store is another great option if you want to be more personalized. Click here for 50 cent Dollar Tree cards
- Go to the bank – Withdraw the exact amount you’ll need for the year. Be fancy and ask for crisp bills. You could also buy gift cards for the year if you prefer that route.
- Prepare the cards – Sit down, address ALL the envelops, put stamps on them, and money in the card. This is the hard part, the follow-through.
- Place the cards back in the box – Write on the outside of the box 2020 Birthdays. Look like a thoughtful hero through all of 2020!
This saves me SO much time and stress. It takes the EXACT same amount of time to get the cards, go to the post office for stamps and go to the bank for ALL of my cards instead of one card every time. The only extra time needed is to address the cards all at once. I wait to sign them until the actual birthday in case I want to write a little note (I usually don’t, but at least I have the option).
Another fun task is to go through your coworkers’ birthday list and then preset Happy Birthday emails to be sent at 7 am on their birthday. You can do this in outlook. Send a message to them with a meme or cartoon and then BCC yourself as well to remind yourself about how throughtful you are.