10 Worst Christmas Gifts

The very worst Christmas gifts you ever received on Christmas probably still came in handy somewhere along the line. Should you find any of these gifts under your Christmas tree this year, here are a few ways in which you can salvage them.

  1. Puppy, kitten or other pet: This is probably the worst gift you can get during the holidays. For one thing, wouldn't you rather pick out your own pet? And who has time during the holidays to train a new puppy? Parents giving a pet to the kids is okay, but everyone else should steer clear of this idea. A pet is a major responsibility, one that the recipient may not want or be able to handle. This is also the only gift on this list that can't easily be repurposed, regifted or removed. Living creatures are not gifts. Cross this idea off your list,
  2. A Christmas Tie: Nobody needs another Christmas tie. No matter how cute the saying, or how pretty it looks when it lights up, leave it on the shelf. If you're continually on the receiving end of novelty Christmas ties, save them up. When you get enough of them, sew them together and make a Christmas tree skirt. Give it back to the person who keeps giving you the ties. 
  3. Fruitcake: Some people love fruitcake. If you're not one of them, a fruitcake can be cut into small squares and mixed in a bowl with some fresh fruit and pudding and turned into a wonderful bread pudding. Make it in a pedestal dish and use it as the centerpiece for dinner as well as the dessert.
  4. Stationery: Stationery with your childhood nickname on it, right next to the pretty kitties or pink clouds and a castle, isn't going to get much use. Write the recipient a thank you note for the gift on the very stationery she gave you, then drop the rest off at the after-school program at your local elementary school. Some young child will be very happy to take that gift off your hands.
  5. A Christmas sweater: If you do get one, hope it doesn't fit. Then you can give it away or return it for something different. If it does fit, parade around the house in it with feigned joy on your face. You can donate it to a local clothing drive on December 26.
  6. Exercise equipment: Unless you specifically requested this, a gift that says "you are out of shape" or "too fat" will make you resent the person who got it for you. If it's a spouse, be sure to draw up a weekly exercise routine for both of you and enforce it. You'll both get some good exercise, and your spouse will think twice before visiting the sporting goods department during the holidays.
  7. Household cleaning equipment: This is the kind of gift husbands like to get their spouses. Unfortunately, for the recipient, all kinds of connotations boil to the surface with this kind of gift. The best course of action is to graciously accept the vacuum, and then vacuum every time your husband takes a nap.
  8. A gift card: To some people, a gift card means you didn't know what to get. To others a gift card is a miracle gift. Some people don't want you to pick out their gifts; they'd rather do it themselves. Do not find fault with a gift card. It could wind up being the most useful gift you get.
  9. Frozen meat. Don't be too hasty with this one. If someone gives you a frozen turkey, take it and run. You can always find a time and an occasion to roast a turkey. If you really don't like the meat or don't think you'll use it, your local food bank or homeless shelter would love to have it.
  10. Scented things: This includes lotions, soaps, candles and sachets, to name a few. Not everyone finds the same scents pleasing, and some of these products can induce allergic reactions or headaches. The best advice is not to give them. If you happen to receive something that doesn't suit your sense of smell, there's probably a corner of the basement or the garage that would benefit from a bit of scent; just make sure the space is well ventilated.
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