Monday, August 29, 2016

Gift Bags Anonymous

It has been over five years since I began pursuing a minimalist lifestyle, and yet there are some things that the minimalist in me still hasn't quite conquered the hoarder.

Today I am confessing gift bags.  I can't bear to throw out a gift bag unless it is broken. I have dozens of gift bags stored in my cupboard for those occasions that I might need gift bag.  Which is not all that often, given that I am not really much of a gift giver, either. 

I have giant gift bags, tiny gift bags, Christmas gift bags, Easter gift bags, ugly gift bags, beautiful gift bags, baby girl gift bags, baby boy gift bags, wine bottle gift bags.  You name it, I probably have one.  

I keep them because they are reusable.  And what a waste to not reuse them! Single use items bother me. A great deal.  

The problem is that the rate of gift bags coming into my house is faster than the rate at which they leave. (I'm pretty sure this is an immigration issue, not a birth rate issue.) My husband receives many gifts at the end of the school year, and sometimes Easter as well, and I save all the bags.  Occasionally one of us will receive a Christmas or birthday present in a gift bag, and we were given many gifts in bags when each of our children were born.  

I try to reuse the bags. Honest!  But we use re-useable fabric wrap for birthday and Christmas presents at home, paper is easier if I have to pack or post gifts (often in recycled wrapping paper), and paper is more exciting to unwrap when the kids go to birthday parties.  I'm left with not a lot of opportunities to use up the bags, because I'm just not a gift giver. (If you know about the five languages, gift giving is fairly low on my list of how I show love.) 

Until I get the courage up to donate a large pile of gift bags to charity, I'll just store them in the cupboard, along with my supermarket bags, rubber bands and scraps of fabric.  

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