in ,

White Elephant Gifts Everyone Wants To Steal

Photo courtesy of istockphoto.

I’m not sure who needs to hear this, but it’s time to shop. Christmas shop that is and while you’ve spent hours planning what to get your family and friends for the holidays, you’re still not sure what to get for that White Elephant exchange you were invited to last month.

So what exactly is a White Elephant party, you ask?

It is a time-honored tradition that’s also known as Dirty Santa, and it’s a gift trade and swap party game or activity. If you’ve never played White Elephant or Dirty Santa, the rules are pretty simple.

Every participant brings a single wrapped gift, which is anonymously placed in a pile. The first participant will then choose a random gift to unwrap, giving each player afterward the option to choose an unwrapped gift or steal an already-unwrapped gift from a playmate.

As you shop for a White Elephant gift, it’s important to consider whether you need something gender-neutral just so you can be sure your present is appreciated no matter who ends up with it. Let’s face it, most of the time the present ends up sitting in the back of your closet because someone always wants to bring funny gag gifts, but if you’ve been the person who ends up going home with a whoopee cushion or a bottle of spilled fake cough syrup, you’ll know that those funny gifts lose their appeal after the drive home. So keep that in mind when making gift selections.

And before you settle on your favorite picks, don’t forget to double-check whether your gift exchange party has a set a solid limit or possible budget.

Most of these parties, especially if they are work-related, ask for gifts at about $10. Here are a few ideas for your friend or office gatherings that can include $10 gifts such as glass or metal straws, holiday mugs with candy, and bath bombs.

A few ideal gifts for a $15 or less budget can always include cozy, warm holiday socks, mini waffle makers, and individually wrapped facial masks.

Gifts that are sure to please for $30 or less could be Bluetooth wireless headband headphones, a coffee mug warmer, and herb window gardens.

White elephant and Dirty Santa games are rarely up to $50, but just in case, try gifts such as a sushi-making kit, air tags, candles, or booze.

And so begins the season of holiday parties, family get-togethers, and gatherings with gift swaps and exchanges. No matter if you call it White Elephant or Dirty Santa, they both mean the same thing-good times with friends, family, and loved ones this holiday season.


Written by Cherie Ward

Cherie Ward is an award-winning Mississippi Gulf Coast journalist with decades of experience in writing and photography. She lives in Ocean Springs with her husband and has two adult children who also live on the Coast.

Connect with her by email at [email protected] with story ideas or find her @cherieward on Instagram. She would love to hear from you.


Leave a Reply

What do you think?

-1 Points
Upvote Downvote

Pearl River kicks off the holiday season with multiple magical events


What to Feed Your Pets on Thanksgiving