This year I have taken part in four secret Santa’s! One in work, one with Jakes family and two online.
Sometimes taking part in Secret Santa’s can cost you more money than what you would usually spend. But in other cases, it may turn out to be cheaper! For example, two years ago Jakes auntie recommended that we all participate in a big Secret Santa, where the limit is set to £20 and everyone receives one large, nice gift, instead of all buying for each other. This really saved on spends as we went from buying individual gifts for all the family members to just buying one gift for our Secret Santa recipient.
I do not enjoy work-related ones that much as most of the time this is an added cost to your Christmas shopping that you would not usually spend.
However, I have enjoyed participating in the online ones despite the extra cost as they are ways of sending a gift to someone who is struggling, or to someone who does not have many family members or friends and you can really make a difference to their Christmas even if it is only with something small.
One of my favourite Secret Santa’s is run by a lovely young lady called Lauren (@laurenb_ymhm). This is hosted through Elfster, a website which helps you to set up a gift exchange that you can either make public or invite specific people to join. Once all participants have signed up, the website randomly selects a recipient for each person and sends their postal address to them. It is a very safe and easy way to take part in gift exchanges all over the world, the website makes sure that the only people who can see your address is you, and your Secret Santa!
The exchange set up by Lauren is known as the Christmas Eve Book Exchange, where people choose books to send to their recipient for Christmas and then we all open our packages on Christmas Eve and reveal what we received via a group chat on Twitter. This will be my second year taking part and I very much hope that it runs again next year!
This year I decided to set up a ‘SeeTheUniverse Secret Santa’ by using Elfster. I was unable to promote this as much as I would have liked and therefore not many people signed up to take part. However, I will be running this again next year and will be sure to advertise and share the application forms in advance so that everyone has a chance to partake.
I suppose overall, you could say that I am a fan of Secret Santa’s, I think they are fun, mysterious and enjoyable to be a part of… Especially when arranged between the right people. Every time I have taken part in an online gift exchange the response has been so lovely. With people posting about their gifts on social media and showing thanks for what they have received. Being completely unaware of what you may receive, as you do not know how well the sender knows you, or what kind of things they enjoy.
Do you like taking part in Secret Santa’s? Do you think you would like to take part in my online gift exchange next Christmas? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!