Hello and welcome to the 12 Days of Christmas hosted by my friend Shirley from Intelligent Domestications! On this sixth day of Christmas, we are sharing party games! I LOVE playing games and I am really excited to see what everyone comes up with. In our families at Christmas, we are always looking for ways to spice up the normal gift exchanges. We have done the White Elephant gift exchange and while it is fun, we like to do different things as well. I have put together 10 fun Christmas gift exchange ideas that I will be sharing with you today. 🙂
You can find the list of exchange ideas below and at the bottom of the post, check out all the other fun party game ideas from the many talented bloggers we have joining us for this blog hop.
Welcome to the third annual 12 Days of Christmas Blog Hop!
Stop by every day from December first through the twelfth for new ideas you can use to make your season brighter!
Meet Your Hosts
They have all been busy as Elves creating, decorating, cooking and crafting tons of new ideas for you to try this holiday season!
10 Christmas Gift Exchange Ideas
We have tried out some of these gift exchanges and they are really fun! I found many of these ideas on the internet over the years in forums and other sources so unfortunately I cannot cite sources for all the ideas. I wish I could give the credit to the rightful owners because these ideas are amazing! They add more excitement to Christmas rather than the boring way of just drawing names and buying a gift for a person after he/she tells you what they want. To that I say “Bah-humbug!” 🙂 This does take a little more thought into what a person would like but I think it is more meaningful that way.
My favorite gift exchange of all that we have tried is the homemade gift exchange. Of course, I love crafting and making projects so it is right up my alley! It also has given me a reason to try new things and learn new skills that I may not have done before. So I encourage you to step out of your comfort zone a little and try something new! You may love it!
Ideas when buying for a specific person
1. Choose Your Own Theme
You and your family or coworkers would decide on a theme for the exchange. Then everyone’s gift needs to fit the theme. For instance, if you choose “green,” all the gifts need to be predominantly green (or have to do with the color green). For example, you could buy a green shirt for someone or get them the movie, Green Lantern, if they are into comics. You get the idea? There are endless ideas for themes. Here are just a few examples:
- As Seen on TV
- Yard and garden
- Big box store (Lowes, Menards etc.)
- Patterns like stripes,
- A decade for example, the 1950’s
- Gifts that all start with the same letter
- This seems like an especially fun theme: Memories. Each gift could relate back to a childhood memory that the giver has of the recipient. For example, homemade cookies that Grandma used to make and some new cookie sheets or a Tom Petty t-shirt because you and your sister went to the concert together. Be sure that everyone tells the memories behind the gift, this is what would make it fun. 🙂
2. Initials of what you want
Each person puts the initials of what they “want most for Christmas” on a slip of paper. For example, if you want a cleaning lady, you would put the initials “CL” on a piece of paper. Everyone throws their paper with their name and the initials into a hat. Draw names and then it’s up to you to be creative in either A) trying to figure out what they really want and buy it, or B) simply try to come up with something interesting to bring with those initials. You could really get creative with this and it would be an absolute HOOT to see what people come up with.
3. Italian gift-giving tradition called the Urn of Fate
A tall urn is filled with wrapped presents—one for each family member along with empty boxes. Each person takes turns picking until they find their rightful gift.
4. Gift for yourself
Everyone brings a wrapped gift for themselves. The gifts are all mixed up and then passed out. Everyone opens one of the gifts, then you must guess who bought the gift. Have a list of everyone in the family so you can write down your guesses. Some are easy, some are hard. At the beginning of the game everyone puts $1 in a pot, whoever has the most correct guesses wins the pot. The good thing is that everyone goes home with a gift they really want.
We did a variation of this where we bought a gift for someone in particular but didn’t write a name on it. All the gifts were wrapped in the same wrapping paper. We had the rule that you cannot pick a gift you or your spouse brought because you would most likely know what was in it. Whoever opened the gift had to guess who it was for and give it that person. We wrote down all of our guesses for everyone and the person with the most correct got an extra small gift. At the end the gifts were given to the rightful recipients.
Ideas for Generic Gifts
(We think it would still be fun to pick a theme when doing generic gifts)
5. Dice game
- Have everyone sit in a circle with their wrapped gift in their lap.
- Give the dice to one person in the circle and tell them to roll the dice and follow the instructions that correspond with the number they roll. For example, if they roll a 6 everyone would pass the gift to the right, roll an 8 and everyone passes to the left. Full list below.
- Go around the circle allowing everyone to roll the dice two times (or however many you choose).
- During the second round before someone rolls, if they have not yet unwrapped their gift have them unwrap it so all of the gifts are unwrapped by the end of the second round.
- Once the dice have gone around the circle twice, you will keep the gift in your hands.
6. Right Left game
Everyone draws a gift at random, a story is read and every time the word right or left is said you pass your gift that way. Here are some stories you could read.
7. Christmas Carols Exchange
This one sounds like a lot of fun! Write the first lines of Christmas carols and place in a bag. Place the remaining part of the song on each gift as guests arrive. When it is time to exchange, each guest pulls out a line of the carol and must match it up to the gift that has the rest of the song. They must sing the song before opening the gift.
8. Gift Auction
Give party guests play money during your party – maybe from winning different games or for things such as arriving first, for wearing red, having their stockings hung, etc. Have someone be the auctioneer and have the “audience” bid on the items. Make sure everyone can get an item. (Gifts can be brought by guests or have the host provide them.) This is fun to have each winning bidder open the gift to see what he/she “bought”. Have enough gifts so guests can bid on several items if they have enough money left.
9. Opener Chooses Recipient
This could be done totally random or where males buy a male gift and females buy a female gift so there are appropriate gifts to go around. Then whoever unwraps the gift decides who it goes to including themselves if they want it.
10. Musical Gifts
Each person brings a wrapped gift to add to a pile. However, instead of picking their presents, people pass a gift along while a Christmas song plays. When the song stops, the person holding the gift gets to keep it.
I hope you enjoyed the Christmas gift exchange ideas! See you tomorrow for the seventh day of Christmas! 🙂
Be sure to visit our fellow 12 Days of Christmas Bloggers below for even more creative ideas this holiday season!