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Secret Santa 2014 input wanted

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Originally Posted by elizabethrose View Post
 
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Originally Posted by meaganola View Post


There was a lot of trading and raiding of stashes as well! I thought it was fair game to send, say, an Urban Decay liner or Butter London polish and not count it against the limit if you got it via trade for stuff you would never use anyway or if it was something you received in a box that had just been taking up space in your swap stash.

 

Agreed!  I went over budget on my Santee but not massively- I used a lot of what I had in my stash (and thankfully my Santee has the same affinity for office supplies that I do- I didn't spend a dime there even though she said she loved journals and things to write in.. hoarder alert), traded for some, worked hard to find the best deals on things- and bought a few full price splurge material items.  I think maybe if we even include a rule that doesn't enact say, a spending limit- but more of a spending minimum.  If you say that your minimum spent on items to include in the present has to equal $25 (and I know we use the honor code), but can exceed the $25 minimum, that would be good!  Maybe also to include a line that mentions that no one should expect a box that has over $25 spent on it- would ease minds?

 

I like that we're talking about this!  I was fairly active before all of SS started this year but I know that I made so many friends out of it (I count you all as my friends.  Fyi.) and love to be able to come home and read through everyone's posts.  Not gonna lie- I still like to stalk some of you just to see how everyone's doing.  I really liked the group participation effort part of it, I guess is what I'm saying.  I love to see people be a part of something- getting the gifts seemed like the icing on the cake (editing in here: I love/loved my SS gift.  I was spoiled rotten.. so so rotten.. I don't want to downplay my Santa at all, because she was awesome and I hope I get her again next year!).  I loved all of us gossiping about what we bought and how we were going to wrap it.. etc.  I feel like adding months onto the front end of when you have to be a part wouldn't be bad, because the community benefits from participation.  (to add to this, I know I haven't been super active recently- so many things going on on the homefront.  Life can settle down now, so that I can hang out with you girls more often.)

 

Okay.  Wall of text over.


All l of this ^^^ I loved being a part of this and I enjoyed the threads so much. I had an amazing SS it would be awesome if she was my SS again. Also I had tons of fun shopping for my santee.

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Originally Posted by LadyK View Post
 

I liked the SS without tiers.  I went over budget but I was happy with it.  I think I could even get more with less money if there was more time to shop. 

iagree.gif I went over budget but I didn't mind, it felt nice to spoil someone.

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Originally Posted by trekkersangel View Post

I agree with everyone on here too! I never expected anything over the $25. Heck I didn't even care if I got anything in the first place! I was having so much fun compiling my gift to my Santee that I forgot about the gift in return. I think most of us are just happy to be participating. Tiers would break up the magic of it all. I made so many friends on this thread that it would be sad not including everyone because if money. Nobody should feel bad so long as everybody knows the rules & is truly there for the magic & excitement of it all.

Oh man I've missed you ladies!

iagree.gif

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hey there....I'm fairly new to MUT but this is something I would love to do!  There are some AMAZING people on this site who have such generous spirits and are so willing to share information etc...that I actually feel that I've started to make friends.  The thing is - I currently don't live in the USA (though I do have a US shipping address) - and in order for the receiver to get the gift in a timely manner if its at xmas - everything has to leave here by Dec 2!!  Any chance that international secret santas could have a head start on shopping by learning who they get asap?  Preferably in early November - so we can ahem...research (stalk) and learn what would make great gifts.

 

I suppose I could get around the date issue if I had to buy sending things directly from a online store and then making a more personal package from here...so that whoever is waiting for my gift at least has something to open in a timely manner...

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Originally Posted by dancersmum View Post
 

hey there....I'm fairly new to MUT but this is something I would love to do!  There are some AMAZING people on this site who have such generous spirits and are so willing to share information etc...that I actually feel that I've started to make friends.  The thing is - I currently don't live in the USA (though I do have a US shipping address) - and in order for the receiver to get the gift in a timely manner if its at xmas - everything has to leave here by Dec 2!!  Any chance that international secret santas could have a head start on shopping by learning who they get asap?  Preferably in early November - so we can ahem...research (stalk) and learn what would make great gifts.

 

I suppose I could get around the date issue if I had to buy sending things directly from a online store and then making a more personal package from here...so that whoever is waiting for my gift at least has something to open in a timely manner...

 

I think this year I will reinforce that if they have someone who is international to please make sure it's sent within a timely manner (I'll have to wait for the USPS site to update their calender for those dates).

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Originally Posted by zadidoll View Post
 

 

I think this year I will reinforce that if they have someone who is international to please make sure it's sent within a timely manner (I'll have to wait for the USPS site to update their calender for those dates).

I actually have a USA shipping address...so it won't be a problem for someone who gets me - however for me to forward packages onwards this year - I still had a deadline of Dec 13 - and that was using DHL.  But to be totally honest - the reason I want to join in is the giving.  While I'm sure the receiving is lovely - for me - the idea of making someone happy is what appeals in this arrangement.  Plus I have a Jan birthday so if I get something late it will be like an extra bday pressie which is always lovely!    I just wish I could participate in Xmas in july lol but I totally understand that you have to keep it small and more for the regulars!

 

I just want to be sure that anyone I am buying for will get their surprises by xmas!

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I have to agree that I like it best when we are all together. This group is so great! I would miss you guys if we were split. I would rather do it twice a year than tiered. I do love increased use of tracking elves--that would make it less stressful, and I had such fun doing it for others!

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I have to agree that I like it best when we are all together. This group is so great! I would miss you guys if we were split. I would rather do it twice a year than tiered. I do love increased use of tracking elves--that would make it less stressful, and I had such fun doing it for others!
I'm thinking we need a separate thread for the elves so we don't have constant need-an-elf/I'll-be-an-elf posts. Elfing is fun, but it would be easier to keep track of the elves if it was consolidated in one thread.

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I'm thinking we need a separate thread for the elves so we don't have constant need-an-elf/I'll-be-an-elf posts. Elfing is fun, but it would be easier to keep track of the elves if it was consolidated in one thread.
Fantastic point!

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Just chiming in to say that Iike the idea of the increased member time, required wishlist or possibly a minimum # of posts per week (even 1 or 2) during the Santa period.  I got a great Santee who posted but I felt bad for others who got someone that never posted.  I don't really think the tiers are neccesary.

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I agree that maybe no tiers, but I think say a $25 minimum, and then those who pick from their stash or want to spend more can do so. I definitely think a wishlist/survey would be good. I would like to participate this year and I will need ideas without having to literally stalk them (though I don't mind doing a little stalking :D).

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Could we maybe brainstorm questions now so the survey can be kind of carved in stone up front?  It was really hard to chase down all of the questions to answer, and a lot of people didn't post answers, but I've done similar swaps where we had a list of specific questions to answer that went with our signup information, and it really helped out.  And I mean beyond favorite brands/colors/products/sub boxes, since it would be more fun to send, say, a nail polish/nail wraps/eye shadow/magnet/cupcake sprinkles/coffee mug/etc. based on someone's favorite tv show/movie, but we would to *know* that someone is a Whovian/Browncoat/etc. so we could order the proper stuff from whatever company.  (Why, yes, I'm shifting into hardcore fandom mode right now.  Why do you ask?)

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That's a good idea. I didn't really want to put in a really prescriptive list as I was international and had no idea what country my Santee might be from (and if I got a Aussie person then no chance could we afford anything from MAC/Urban Decay/Lime Crime/Sugarpill! as it tends to be 2x-3x as expensive here). I find it a bit easier to answer a what would you rather than formalating my own somehow. I also missed a lot of questions here and there as the thread moved verrrrry quickly at times and was hard to keep up with it.

Also I'm kind of anti-tiers in the sense that I always think of things like secret santa as very open .... sort of sending good karma out into the internet. Tiers make it seem more transactional.

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I'm not sure how to make it any clearer that the tiers have nothing to do with wanting to receive more expensive things. I'm not sure how having a $50 SS is any different than having a Nails Santa.

 

There were women who felt bad that the gifts they sent out were not worthy even though they followed the rules and did what was expected of them. You can tell them not to feel bad all you want but that's not going to stop them from feeling bad about what they sent. I know because while I spent at least $65 on my gift I still saw that Naked 3 palette and went "Well, the gift I sent is crap". I'm a rule follower and found the $25 limit stressful, even though I ended up ignoring it. I did not have any sort of "stash" to hunt through last year, not everyone does.

 

Off the tier thing because it's irking me and I don't know why (probably just too early in the morning and no sleep yet). If I participate again this year I hope we can get our Santees sooner, my money would have gone farther with some of the sales and not feeling like I had to order everything in 2 weeks to ensure it got to my house in time to pack it.

 

I do think everyone needs a survey or wishlist because the thread was moving so fast, I couldn't keep up with all the questions being asked at once and gave up trying to answer them all. We also had people who didn't seem to have wishlists/much info. So just a standard survey for everyone to fill out would be nice, all the better due before the names are assigned so you aren't waiting for your person to answer them after it's already in shopping time.

 

I loved the separate Elf thread idea because the day I ended up needing one, the list was at least 7 pages back and didn't have everyone on it, I ended up just messaging someone I thought was an elf and confirming.

 

I think that's all my rambling except Thank You to Zadi for all the work you did last year. You made organizing it look easy lol

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Quote:
Originally Posted by meaganola View Post
 

Could we maybe brainstorm questions now so the survey can be kind of carved in stone up front?  It was really hard to chase down all of the questions to answer, and a lot of people didn't post answers, but I've done similar swaps where we had a list of specific questions to answer that went with our signup information, and it really helped out.  And I mean beyond favorite brands/colors/products/sub boxes, since it would be more fun to send, say, a nail polish/nail wraps/eye shadow/magnet/cupcake sprinkles/coffee mug/etc. based on someone's favorite tv show/movie, but we would to *know* that someone is a Whovian/Browncoat/etc. so we could order the proper stuff from whatever company.  (Why, yes, I'm shifting into hardcore fandom mode right now.  Why do you ask?)


That's a great idea!

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Hi Everyone!!! I had to disappear for a bit due to demanding schedule. I love the Secret Santa nail and makeup. I do think it would be great for the person to quickly acknowledge and the tier group sounds great. I think many ladies like a higher end gift. I spent over the limit on both and could have spent more but stopped myself. I was fortune to have awesome Santas. I hate to say this but a couple- not many- gifts looked like they were under the limit and although the person may say oh I will accept whatever. We all want to receive a gift we love. That's part of the fun. I love the idea of an Easter bunny theme since I love Easter. Other than that... I am looking forward to this year exchanges.

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Subbing because I'd love to do Secret Santa this year and this will keep me in the loop of how it all works. Yay shopping and making people happy!

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I agree with many of the suggestions offered so far. Specifically, I am not a fan of the tier giving. The dollar minimum seems like a perfect resolution.

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I am late to the party but I've thought about it A LOT and am also against the idea of tiers. It seems kind of against the spirit of the whole thing to me, and as others have said it makes it hard to account for people who shop their stash, use points, etc. Say someone uses their birchbox points worth $20, free sephora $15 and has some new items in their stash worth $20. They also spend $25 on other stuff. This person spent $25 but their gift is worth $80.  How do you account for that?

 

I also think it would be sad to split people based on money. I think for almost all of us it's more fun to give than to receive anyway on this.

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The tier thing isn't to divide people depending on their worth, it was simply and idea because last year, I can remember in particular a few members feeling really bad that the gifts they sent were exactly $25 worth of makeup or whatnot. My suggestion on the tiers was only said because some people felt really insecure about what they had bought their SS after seeing some of the reveals that were obviously way over the $25 limit.

 

I am not trying to take away the fun, it was just a suggestion and I am sorry so many people thought that I was trying to make it about money. When in all honesty, I was trying to make it about people feeling comfortable rather then feel shame. Because it's the thought that counts and nobody should feel ashamed of what they purchased their SS.

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Hmmm. I don't if this is a good idea or not, but maybe it's a compromise to the whole tier thing. We don't want to restrict how much a santa can spoil their santee, but no santa wants to feel like her gift was sub-par.

 

Maybe any santas who don't have a stash to pull from or are worried the gift they receive will be "too lavish" in a sense, can just make a quick note in their wishlist or something. You know. Just something asking their Santa not to go too overboard or get crazy lavish. The santa could always ignore it of course, but at least the thought is then out there. And it kind of fits with the wishlist. After all, one of your wishes may be for your Santa to not "spoil you" too much.

 

I don't know. Just a thought, I guess.  ;)

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Chiming in because I'm curious... seeing all the midsummer fairy talk made me want to play, so I guess I need to stay tuned and figure out how things work for this year's Secret Santa!

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I have to say, I think that KellyKaye and Tweakabell have a point. 

 

I wouldn't want anyone to feel that they couldn't participate in the fun because they see some of the more generous gifts people gave last year, and know they don't have the resources to reciprocate. 

 

What if, instead of "tiers" -- and people publicly declaring themselves in them -- there two options: one with a spending "range" (say, a minimum of $X and a maximum of $2X) and one with a minimum but no maximum.  Everyone would choose an option in the email they send with their address and everyone would be matched to someone who selects the same option, behind the scenes by whoever is assigning the Santas.  No one would ever have to know who picked what, people who want to be able to spend with abandon can continue to do so and no one has to feel that their gift isn't enough.  And we can all "oooh" and "aaah" over everything.  As KellyKaye said, it's not about the money -- it's about making sure that no one feels that they didn't do enough when they've done all that they can.

 

And -- as a corollary -- for folks in the "range" group, any "free" money (e.g., BB points) should count toward the maximum.  I'm guilty of having stocked up on points, gift cards I've been given, etc., preparing for the Midsummer gifting, and I realized today that I could spend an insane amount of money without spending a penny out of pocket.  Somehow, should that be considered, especially for people who don't have stashes to raid, stuff to trade, points at Ulta, etc?  IDK, but again, I'd hate to see people sitting out because they feel they can't do as much as others.

Edited by jennm149
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