My love for unique and fun things does not end at just products and gifts. I love learning and I do not have a lot of time to spare, so quick, unique and fun facts fascinate me. Below are 11 really unique and fun facts about gifts and gift giving that I have come across and am excited to share with you.
To support the fact as an actual “fact”, I have included my source for each fact. If you’d like to visit the source, please feel free to click on the italicized words in each section and that link will take you straight to my source. OK, now to start…
#1. The Million Dollar List
The Million Dollar List is exactly what it sounds like. It is a list that includes gifts of publicly known donations of at least one million dollars. Listed are approximately 80,000 gifts given by American individuals or companies since the year 2000. Wow! There are some amazingly generous people out there!
#2. The Gift Office
Did you know that the US Government actually has a Gift Office? A whole office just dedicated to gifts! How neat is that? The Gift Office receives and keeps records of all diplomatic gifts on behalf of the White House or more specifically, the President of the United States, the Vice President, and the Secretary of State, as well as their spouses. The Gift Office also plays a part in helping with gifts that are to be given, not just received.
#3. What kind of gifts do Queens give?
Speaking of diplomatic gifts…on My 25th, 2011, Queen Elizabeth II, gave a gift box with her emblem on the front of it to First Lady Michelle Obama. Inside the gift box was a brooch with coral flowers and gold leaves, tea, chocolates and orange sticks from a fine British chocolate shop.
She also received a porcelain floral arrangement. The value of these gifts has been estimated at $1,660.00. What a beautiful gift! I could only imagine how yummy that fine chocolate was!
Along the same lines, I recently came across this trading card of Michelle Obama, Barak Obama, and Queen Elizabeth II. I admit, I never even knew there were trading cards with presidents and queens on them, so I thought that was pretty unique and just had to share! Check it out by clicking on the blue letters!
#4. Gift Record Keeping
The Gift Office is not the only one that keeps records of gifts. Records of gifts received can also be found in homes in some countries such as Vietnam, Korea, China and Thailand. Gifts are given for major life events such as weddings, the birth of a child, coming of age, weddings, moving and funerals.
Hosts then record these gifts to serve as a reminder of how much to give in return when the gift giver hosts a future event. This seems very thoughtful and I see how it could really bring a community together.
However, I think it would personally stress me out. Keeping a record of gifts with the intent of having to repay the value of the gifts would probably just make me feel like I have a list of debts to pay instead of a list of gifts. But hey, that’s me. Maybe I would feel different if I was in their position.
#5. Do you use all of your gift cards?
Almost one billion dollars in gift cards went unused in 2015. According to a survey completed by Consumers Reports, 58% of those surveyed said they had unused gift cards because they just did not have the time to use them. 38% could not find something they wanted to buy with the gift card. 32% said they had unused gift cards because they forgot about them, 4% said the gift card expired and 3% lost the gift card.
Yikes! I pretty much have unused gift cards as a result of every reason listed here (except for expired cards). I am not a big gift card buyer because I like to give people unique and fun gifts that I think they will enjoy, but occasionally I have gone the route of buying a gift card if I was in a rush. These numbers do make me think twice about buying future gift cards.
#6. Who started gift cards anyway?
The Mobil Oil Company introduced the first gift card in 1995. In less than ten years, gift cards replaced clothing as the top selling item during the Christmas season.
I am personally curious as to why gift cards are the top selling item during the Christmas shopping season when so many of them go unused. If I had to guess, I’d say that maybe a lot of people are just really busy during the Christmas season and so purchasing a gift card is quicker and easier than taking the time to find something the recipient would really like.
That is one of the reasons I started this website. I wanted to make it easy for people to buy really cool, unique and fun things to make their lives easier and more exciting when shopping for themselves or any gift on their list.
#7. How much do we spend on Mother’s Day?
Below is a graph showing six different age groups and approximately how much each age group spent per person for Mother’s Day in 2016. The 25-34 year olds seem to be most generous, spending on average $229 each when it came to buying gifts for Mom.
I find that rather interesting as one would think this age group would probably not have as much money as possibly the next age group (35-44 year olds), as at that age they are usually coming right out college (student loans), getting married, buying their first home, starting families etc.
Or maybe it has nothing to do with how much money they have. Maybe it is because they are going through so much change during this time (marriage, pregnancy etc) that they are feeling nostalgic and as a result are feeling generous with Mom. Regardless the reason or the age group, I’m glad Mom’s are getting spoiled and appreciated!
#8. How To Get Someone in the Holiday Spirit
Do you know someone that has difficulty getting in the holiday spirit? Or maybe do they dislike holiday shopping? If so, just have them help out by wrapping presents! The makers of Scotch tape conducted a survey and found that 28%, or more than one out of four people said that the act of wrapping gifts puts them more in the holiday spirit than when they go gift shopping.
I think I fall into this category. Christmas shopping is a little fun to me. I enjoy the decorations and Christmas music. However, after a while I get tired of the lines and not being able to find parking.
But when I start wrapping the presents, I get excited. I think of the person that will be receiving the gift and their reaction when they unwrap it. I usually have some fun Christmas music on in the background as well. I’ve noticed this to be the case with the rest of my family as well, so quite honestly I’m a bit surprised that the number is not higher than 28%.
#9. Are women better gift givers?
It has been said that women are better at buying gifts than men. Interestingly, there has been an actual study done on this topic. The study did confirm that women do a better job at selecting gifts for others than men do. The reasoning behind it is because it is believed that women have more interpersonal interests than men do.
So ladies, let’s try to show some grace when the men in our lives just do not seem to be as good at gift giving as we are. They mean well, it is just how they may be wired.
I say “may be” because I personally know some men that are very thoughtful and amazing gift givers. I also know men that would benefit from having a friend help them out with their gift shopping. Let’s remember the study was conducted on a group of women and men, not all women and men. After all, if the gift is given with love, isn’t that all that matters?
#10. National Regifting Day – yes, it’s a thing.
Some people think it is offensive to give away a gift received. Some people view it as actually being responsible to regift a gift that does not work for them, but may bless someone else. National Regifting Day was introduced in hopes of helping regifting become more widely accepted.
National Regifting Day became a national holiday in 2008 and is observed on the Thursday before Christmas Day. Interestingly, this day happens to be a very popular office party day and office parties tend to be a popular place to regift. A survey showed that 68% of women and 47% of men said that they regift or are thinking about it.
I am completely on board with regifting and I think it’s actually pretty cool that there is a “national” day to encourage regifting. It makes me wonder though how many other really cool national days I’m missing out on because I don’t know about them. Maybe I’ll do a future post on that!
#11. What is the largest wrapped gift you’ve ever seen?
In December of 2016 you could find this Alliance Airlines Fokker F70, an 80 seat private jet wrapped up in Powerball wrapping paper at Brisbane Airport. Why? It was to promote the Powerball jackpot which had reached $25 million that Christmas.
Spectators were encouraged to take a picture and share it on social media along with a caption of what dream gift they would buy and give away with their winnings, if they were to win the jackpot. I can’t even imagine how long it must have taken to wrap that plane!
Well there you have it, 11 unique and fun facts about gifts and gift giving! I hope you enjoyed these neat little facts and that they brought you some joy. Overall, my wish for you is that you’d just have more fun with the gift giving and gift receiving process. If we are already giving and receiving gifts, let’s be intentional about it and have fun with it!
Which unique and fun fact was your favorite? Are you aware of any unique and fun facts about gifts or gift giving that could be added to this list? If so, please do share in the comments below. I look forward to hearing from you!
To having fun with gift giving and receiving,