Gift Exchange and Giving Goats


Harper Grey

Every year I attend several parties that host a “fun” gift-exchange game. I bring a $5-$15 wrapped gift and put it in a pile along with everyone else’s offerings. Then I get to unwrap a $5-$15 gift that someone else brought. Yay! Or not.

OK, I get that Christmas has turned into a holiday of consumer-driven madness. And hey… I’m a shopper. I even get paid to write about shopping! So I’m not going to go on a rant about how wrong it is to buy, buy, buy during the holidays. I like presents. A lot.

But I hate the give exchange game. Because what can you buy for $15? Not much. Read More

What Your Kids Can Teach You About Altruism

What Your Kids Can Teach You About Altruism

‘Tis better to give than to receive…. but does this apply to kids? Our impulse, especially during the holidays, is often to spoil them to the greatest extent possible. Retailers have us convinced that Christmas is all about kids and their enjoyment of consumer goods. Child development experts talk to us about cultivating an altruistic nature in our children and some suggest that children are inherently selfish, so it’s important for adults to teach kids about giving. But recent research finds that kids can teach us a lot about altruism. Read More