Secret Santa

This is completely off topic, optional and unlogged, so feel free to ignore if you aren’t interested. But since we are all spread out in the world, I thought it could be interesting to do our own version of the traditional secret santa people play around the end of year holidays - where we receive a gift from potentially (almost) anywhere in the world. :sunglasses: It’s a bit religious in origin, but our version can be fully secular. :slight_smile:

Here is how it could work:

  • Participants would each be assigned someone to give a gift to - we will each be the santa of someone, and have one santa assigned to each.
  • In November we pick gifts, and we send them at the beginning of December. We all go to the post office one day, and send our gift to the person we have been assigned to be the santa of. It will then take a few days to a few weeks to arrive to everyone, throughout the month of December. :slight_smile:
  • To help santas decide on the gifts, we each write a wishlist to our santa, for the gift we will be receiving. Note that we won’t know where your gift will be coming from in the world at this point :slight_smile: so it wouldn’t need to be too precise - maybe categories, themes or examples that can leave some room for interpretation to the santa. Edit: This would also be a place to indicate if you have any constraint for receiving the gift - if you find it easier to receive it at the conference, you can also indicate it.
  • There would also be a set maximum price for the gift, identical for everyone - maybe 10 euros? Edit: This is only for the cost of the gift, and doesn’t include shipping costs, since that can vary depending on the destination. The spending limit for shipping costs is to use the very basic/slow/normal postal mail - ie no UPS express shipping. There is the whole month of December for them to arrive, and this way the gift’s journey can be a little more interesting than taking a plane.
  • When we’ll receive the gifts, we’ll post pictures on the forum - this way we can all see them arrive, and try to figure out together who the santas were :slight_smile:

What do you think?

If you are interested, click “I’m in!” below before Nov 12th, and I’ll include you in the draw.

  • I’m in!
  • Not this time

0 voters

4 Likes

Sound like an interesting idea! I’m in, but, I do foresee a few issues, especially with international shipping, especially to India.

  1. The last time I shipped something internationally it cost me over 30EUR, and it was something pretty small and light. This was more than the cost of the thing (although in this case the thing was more of the “priceless” variety).
  2. Import duties here are ridiculous at times. I’ve paid as much as 100% of the original price of a produce I bought off Amazon.com. They were including the shipping cost in the price of the product (which you shouldn’t) but because it was a single bill from Amazon they were adamant and I had two options, pay up, or reject the delivery (for which there will be no refund because they will not ship back). Of course, I could also fight, but who has the time or money for that.
  3. A simple option is to buy the product in the local Amazon or other site and have it delivered locally.
  4. Amazon in India will not let you purchase using a card that is not in the Indian currency. Some international sites do the same, although I have successfully shipped a gift from Amazon.com (the US site) to someone within the US.

The above might be worth keeping in mind. There might be similar issues in other countries as well.

I agree that receiving something from another country is also what would attract me - discovering the “customs” of other countries can even be part of the fun :wink: But I guess it’s up to each person receiving a gift to write their preference in their wishlist to santa - so @kshitij I would definitely mention what you said in yours.

Btw, more generally for everyone who will participate, it’s good to to think of what you’ll put in your wishlist. If you send it to your santa immediately after the draw in two weeks, that will give more time to your santa to think about your gift, and to find it.

My experience with shipping costs is the same as @kshitij’s – I don’t think we’ll be able to stay within 10 euros if it’s an actual thing being sent. I’m ok with adding shipping costs to whatever I send, but in case whomever gets me isn’t, here’s some ideas that don’t require shipping.

Wishlist:

  • Vouchers for: kobo.com, Audible.com
    No shipping required, and can be personalised with some book recommendations :smile:
  • Gift donations to a local flora or fauna rescue organisation.
  • Something iconic from where you’re from, with a story about why it’s meaningful.
3 Likes

I know this doesn’t really fit with the Santa theme, but here’s an idea: since most of us are presumably meeting in person in Lisbon in May 2020, we could all bring a generic gift from our home countries and then play some kind of game to exchange them and/or guess which gift is from which country. It would save a lot on shipping costs and make participation much easier!

Of course the downsides are that it wouldn’t happen at Christmas time, and it wouldn’t be personalized to the recipient (though I guess it could be if we wanted to draw names first instead of doing a game in person). But hey, maybe Santa is bored and wants something fun to do in May instead of just napping at the North Pole.

@jill Good point about the shipping costs - the 10 euros limit were meant for the gift itself, so I think we should count the shipping costs extra. Maybe the limit on the shipping costs part should be to just do the very basic/slow/normal postal mail - ie no UPS express shipping. There is the whole month of December for them to arrive, and this way the gift’s journey can be a little more interesting than taking a plane. :slight_smile:

@braden Yup, that’s a good idea too :slight_smile: The two aren’t exclusive of each other. I think there is a specific charm to receiving a gift from somewhere in the world through the post, so I would still want to try it, but we can also organize something like that for the conference - or maybe for the next iteration if really the delivery is a mess. Or maybe something in between, where those who prefer to receive their gift at the conference can say so in their wishlist?

2 Likes

Alright, now that the poll is closed, let’s get this started! :slight_smile:

If you have indicated you wanted to participate, you should receive an email on your @opencraft.com mailbox with the details of the next steps, including the name of the person you are the santa of :slight_smile:

To do this week (before Nov 19th): write your wishlist to your santa (and include the delivery address if different than in the contact list!). The earlier you send it, the more time your santa will have to think of it and shop, so the better your gift will be :stuck_out_tongue:

Reminder: we won’t know where your gift will be coming from in the world at this point :slight_smile: so it wouldn’t need to be too precise - maybe categories, themes or examples that can leave some room for interpretation to the santa. This would also be a place to indicate if you have any constraint for receiving the gift - if you find it easier to receive it at the conference, you can also indicate it.

1 Like

Thanks for entering your wishlists everyone! I think we are only missing @jill 's, who is away - so for Jill’s santa, pick your best guess to pick a gift for her in the meantime :slight_smile:

Next step: picking the gifts - we’ll be sending them on Dec 3rd.

She posted it in this thread, FYI: Secret Santa

@braden Ah perfect, thanks!

Since I was unwell a lot recently, I missed following this discussion and participating in the activity.

Due to issues around shipping, shipping costs, customs etc., I prefer doing something like this if we organize this again during the conference.

@antoviaque Jill address also isn’t listed on the contact doc btw.

@gabriel Hmm, then maybe it’s better for her santa to wait for her to come back and provide an address. Alternatively, mailing it to a post office in her city, and then giving her the address, could also work.

Quick reminder to all the santas - today is gift sending day! :slight_smile:

Remember to check the wishlist of the person you are sending the gift to, for any preference for the expedition. Otherwise, use the address in the contact form.

For the expedition, take the lowest/cheapest way that provides a tracking number - this way you can keep an eye on it, and warn the person receiving the gift if the package needs attention to be received.

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It is now! Sorry for the delay.

So… when’s the big reveal? I got an anonymous message from my secret santa (and a lovely gift!) but I don’t know who to thank!

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@jill Cool that you received your gift! I haven’t had mine yet :slight_smile:

If you have it, do you want to post a picture here? You can try to guess who sent it… Your santa can confirm by replying here? :slight_smile:

Sure :smile:

Hey Jill : ) I gave a €10 donation to Fauna Rescue of South Australia, that’s a great gift idea. Cheers!

Thank you so much!

Since this is a digital gift, I’ll post a cute photo of a rescued koala from Fauna Rescue SA:

They’re a great organisation. Very little administration, so the donations go straight to helping rehabilitate and release animals back into the wild.

And my guess is @gabriel , since he noticed my shipping details were missing from Contacts

6 Likes

Wow, look at the claws on that koala!! :astonished: It’s so cute, but you definitely don’t want it to get mad at you!! :sweat_smile:

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Well done @jill :laughing:

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