Ideas for Gift Giving on a Budget


Zoe Zeballos, Staff Writer

1. The school library book sale.

If you look over the banister next to the printer, you might see a large bookshelf and a spinning metal rack both covered in books, you’ve found the book sale! Hardcover books cost a quarter each but the paperbacks cost only a measly dime! And if you’re good at planning ahead, check out the library book sale near the end of the year when there’s an even bigger supply of books.

2. Packaged food from the cafe or vending machine.

It’s there and it’s square. Beware the bill eaters.

3. A homemade card.

Like they say, it’s the thought that counts.

4. A cool pebble from the ground.

As long as it doesn’t snow If you dig, there’s got to be a smallish rock somewhere. Pet rocks anyone? 

5. Do arts? Give a craft or do a free commission.

Make their weird, weird dreams come true and create that picture of the Berenstain Bears fighting Barney to the brutal, brutal death.

6. Hug your parents.

Don’t mention it’s a gift verbally however, that might get rid of the magic. You can probably mumble “merry christmas” under your breath and still be cool, though.

7. Coupon book.

Now featuring amazing services such as going grocery shopping without whining, one free hour without you, the wifi hog, clogging up the bandwidth, a no bugging day, a one-time single room cleaning, along with miscellaneous chores doing. Remember to double check those expiration dates, no need to allow those servitudes to be held over your head forever.

8. Do music? Learn and play the person’s favorite song for them as a personal concert.

As long as you don’t suck, I’m sure many an older relative will appreciate it. Friends and younger family members? It’s a coin toss.

9. Cook? Make/bake a dish or dessert for the person like cupcakes or cookies orgrilled cheese.

Who doesn’t like food? FYI make sure to clean up afterwards or whoever’s stuck doing it will like your gift a lot less.

10. Gift cards.

A $5 gift card to Dunkins that says exactly how much you are willing to spend on them. Power move: give them your used one with 19 cents left or your unused one from 2014. Maybe it will still work, but not on your dollar.

11. Hot cocoa mix from your pantry poured into a plastic bag.

An actual gift I received once from a Secret Santa. Last-minute gifts are great, aren’t they?

12. Money!

What’s else is there to say? Amounts usually start at a penny, through Monopoly money, pesos, and Canadian coins could also be given for zero monetary value and five collector’s value.

13. Photoshop and E-cards.

Maybe put you and your friends faces on something stupid like dancing elves or make a collage of their favorite things and send the jpeg. The school has Photoshop for free on all of the computers. Check it out after school or get a pass to go to the library during lunch.

14. Origami.

A.K.A., a paper plane and hat ‘cause let’s be real, the only thing an Average Joe McGee like you can do is that and maybe a cootie catcher out of an 8½ x 11 paper. But if you can do better go for it. You go make that flyingscaly dragon.

15. Watch that dumb show they won’t shut up about with them.

You know the one.

16. Give them air.

Wave your hand/blow on them. That will get their gift to them as the jet streams flow. Be careful not to spit on them. Nobody wants that and it makes you look like a fool.

17. Gift the lonely apple on your lunch tray.

If they throw it away afterwards, that’s on them. Not like you were going to eat it anyways.

18. And of course the best present?

My Presence.

You’re welcome.