I have a little private tradition of writing down all my Christmas presents, and who I received them from. I do this for my birthday too. This might seem like a strange, pointless and slightly boastful thing to do, but there are some real, practical reasons why I do it. Let’s get straight into the post – here’s why I write down what I got for Christmas and why you might want to consider it too!
Why I write down what I got for Christmas
1. So I know who to thank
There’s nothing worse than starting to write your thank you messages and realising you can’t quite remember who gave you what. You risk thanking them for the wrong gift, or, equally awkwardly, admitting you can’t remember what they gave you, or not thanking them at all. By writing down what people gave me as soon as possible after opening the gift, I can write my thank you notes with confidence.
2. So I remember long-term who gave me what
It’s nice to look back in the future and remind yourself of what people got you. By writing down who gave you what, you are more likely to remember where the items in your home came from (or be able to look it up) and associate each item with the person. This creates nice memories and associations with the item, rather than it just being a random object that you can’t remember where it came from. Also, if someone buys you clothes or accessories, you might choose to wear them when you see the person.
3. So I remember to use my presents
It’s too easy to put something in a cupboard and forget about it, even if it’s a wanted gift! I like to look down my list regularly in the weeks after Christmas and remind myself what I haven’t used yet. This way, I gradually use everything, and nothing gets forgotten.
4. So I can store them away straight away
This is related to the last point. By writing down what you receive, you can then put your presents into suitable places straight away, and then use your list to keep track of them. Otherwise, you might be tempted to keep all your presents in a pile in the middle of the room to remind yourself what you have. Storing them away is much neater and you still have them ‘all in one place’ on your list.
5. To keep track of who to buy presents for next year
Next Christmas, you can look at your list and remind yourself who bought you gifts and of what size and approximate value. This is useful for deciding on appropriate gifts to buy people and prevents you from forgetting anyone. It also helps you make sure you don’t buy someone the same gift they bought you last year, or worse, regift an unwanted present back to them!
6. For gift ideas
You can use your list to get present ideas for next year, and for birthdays. If you really like a particular present, you might consider gifting the same thing to some of your friends and family who would also like it! If you’re ever stuck for gift ideas you have a ready-made list. You can also add things you liked to your own Christmas list for next year if you’d like to receive them again.
7. As an exercise in gratitude
Whether the list is long or short, seeing a written list of the things you’ve received can make you realise how fortunate you are. You can look at the list and reflect on how grateful you are, not just for the presents themselves but for the people you have in your life who care about you. This is a good pick-me-up if you’re ever feeling sad or lonely.
Do you write down what you got for Christmas?
If you don’t already write down what you got for Christmas, has this post made you consider it? It’s such a simple thing to do and there are so many advantages in the present and future. By writing down what you got from whom, you can hopefully avoid embarrassing situations caused by forgetting who a present was from. It’s also a ready-made gift guide for next year!
To end this post, I would love to know what you all got for Christmas (or for your birthday, if that was more recent). Let me know in the comments below!
I’ve always written down who bought what so my kids (no longer kids!) can write their thank you notes. Usually I then throw away the paper but I love these ideas so may start keeping the info in a notebook. Really enjoyed this post. Happy New Year!
Happy New Year! I can see how it would be so helpful to keep track of who bought what for your kids. I’m glad I’ve inspired you to keep that info for these other ideas too!