No announcement yet.

Secret Santa 2017

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    Need feedback members for 2018

    jkoucheki asked if I'd take moderator for another year, originally we were going to switch off for 2018. I can take it for another year, it wasn't difficult for me and I have plenty of time to spare but I don't feel up to 2019. I'm a firm believer in fresh blood to keep things refreshed and moving forward.

    So one question is, do you want me to take moderator for 2018. Is there anyone else out there chomping at the bit to give it a try? I'm flexible and don't care one way or another. All the information would be forwarded to a new person and I'm available any time if they have questions.

    Two things that probably need addressing for the future:

    Despite all best laid plans, it's impossible to anticipate every possible problem that can go wrong...particularly at the very end. One thing we can't plan for is last minute hospitalizations or God forbid, deaths. We do scurry and join together to make sure everyone who has participated does receive gifts too. We do our best to get them there by Christmas and this is very important to us as a Group. I'm thinking it might be worthwhile to add a category to the questionaire I sent out last year. It would be who would like to make one item to be put aside for year end emergency. That item would be sent to an individual we name to store it. The person would need to have someone close by who can go in and take care of sending it out should something befall them at the last minute. I believe auntimern said she could do that. Auntiemern, does Rhonda or someone live close to you and could go in and take care of it if you were hospitalized or couldn't at the last minute??? I'm not the one to send it to because I'm totally alone so if something happened to me then we're out of luck because there is no one here to handle it.

    The other thing which jkoucheki mentioned is that we really do need stress that people need to take keeping up to date seriously. Yes, I too think a few of the people who bowed out around July/August had just gotten themselves too overwhelmed with catching up. Because of the volume of gifts we make (12) throughout the year this Group is a serious commitment, perhaps more so than other groups available. I think that could be stressed more. Perhaps adding it to the Group description and again a section in the Rules that people sign. What are your suggestions with this type of thing.

    Any other things you would like to see done or not done. All suggestions are REALLY
    Women are Angels. When someone break's our wings we will continue to fly-usually on a broomstick.We're flexible like that.

    Last year I had to drop out mid year, so it made this year more important to me to finish. I have decided that every other year is good for me as I am in a library quilt group and that takes up a lot of my time as I am the one who comes up with projects each month. Just a suggestion--maybe the group should just do 5 gifts plus one special gift once you know your secret Santa name. (I would probably do it if that was the case.) Costs for mailing would be reduced I would think and having two months to finish a project would take some of the pressure off. Not sure what the solution could be for an emergency. I think you would just have to find wait and see if it happens and then try and figure something out.


      I second DNeubauer's idea. Having a 6 item commitment would be more doable. I had fun but am not sure I'm up for doing 12 more items next year. People who want to still do 12 items could exchange with 2 people maybe?

      Also since I handmake gifts for my family, having the shorter time frame be right before the holidays made it harder to get things completed in time. Maybe get the last few categories out sooner? Just a thought.

      I did have fun with it though.


        You all can take this for what it's worth, but please don't take offense. I have been in the Secret Santa Swap for a long time. Before Rhonda did it, and I believe the year before Sandy Navas and Blondie were in charge. My personal opinion is that the swap has always been done with 12 gifts, one for each month. Kinda of like the 12 days of Christmas. The rules for the past 3 years have also included that at least 75% of all items gifted must be hand made. That means you actually only have to commit to making 9 of the 12 gifts. If you can't manage to get 9 little gifts made within a 300 day (approximately) period, then maybe this is not the swap for you. I went through many months of not being able to stand to cut fabric, and was NEVER on time, from month to month, but still managed to get all of my gifts done. I have never NOT sent them in time for Christmas, even when I have gotten behind for whatever reason. Maybe instead of random, scattered themes, we can use the holidays within the months to base the themes on. (August is the only month without a holiday in the US)That way everyone would know at the beginning of the swap what each months theme will be. There are also 2 quilters choice options, that you don't even have to follow the theme. There is also no "rule" that states the gifts have to be elaborate, take all month to make gifts. js. Seriously, it is supposed to be fun, not stressful. "Life" happens to all of us, and there a never any guarantees that road bumps won't get in our way. I think we should keep it at 12 months, 12 gifts, the way it has always been. That is my 2 cents worth...and I doubt that I would even join if it were changed to 6 gifts. I look forward all year to my 12 Secret Santa gifts, that aren't going to to be anything, like anyone else could possibly give me....that were made from the heart, without even knowing who I am for over 9 months.
        As for being the 'keeper' of the extra I said, none of us have any guarantees. With that being said, I can guarantee that if were I to be in the hospital at the time the items needed to be sent, my DD or even Rhonda, would make sure it was taken care of. That is about as close to a guarantee as I can get.
        Blankets wrap you in warmth, quilts wrap you in love



          Auntiemern, it would be easy enough to list themes for all 12 months in January or February (I'd say February would be better because it gives a little more time for the majority of people to sign up. I could even still do it as a drawing where other members still pick the themes. I'd just draw 10 in February (I'll pick January and then draw someone on Jan 15 to name a theme for February). That way by February all 12 these would have been named for the year.

          I have to admit that I too really like having 12 themes although I pretty much do complete one a month. I don't know why but for me it keeps me on my toes and my interest peaked. I'm sure it's not the case with everyone but for some reason it helps motivate me. Granted I don't have a big family or job so maybe it's just a way to keep me awake :-)

          Women are Angels. When someone break's our wings we will continue to fly-usually on a broomstick.We're flexible like that.


            This was the first time I participated, so my perspective may be a little different.

            I really loved the concept of 12 gifts. Some of the themes were pretty challenging for me, but I knew I had the "fallback" of purchasing a few things if I really couldn't figure something out.

            What about offering a choice between two themes each month? Or maybe posting several themes for each quarter? We could still have a monthly post for everyone to chime in on, etc. I did like the challenge of a monthly theme - it kept me on my toes, as it were, and it also helped push me to try new techniques too (I leapt off the FMQ ledge because one of the ideas I had was perfect for it, and I made a dresden that I'd been wanting to try for a long time). The group was so encouraging and supporting, I felt confident enough to try, and I'm so glad I did!

            I personally didn't feel pressured to come up with something elaborate for each theme, but I was concerned that some of what I made wasn't "enough" - I'm not sure how a group could completely overcome that,
            especially for newcomers. I know it was mentioned several times that large, complex gifts weren't the expectation, so I kept reminding myself that.

            Do these groups not stay available for others to see? It might help folks who were new to see how fun and not "fancy" or whatever the projects are on the whole.

            I'd be happy to make some "backups" should they be needed - I think that is a great idea.


              I too would like to keep at 12 gifts.


                I'm in for next year!
                I'm in the 12 gift column.
                I really like the idea of having the themes set out early. My life changed a bit this year too. I went from a stay-at-home mom to working full time and it caused me to readjust my schedule. I have some time during the school year to sew, but my biggest block of free time comes in the summer. I had most of my monthly projects at least chosen, if not started by the time school got out, but finished them up over the summer.
                Having the themes that early would also give me time to search out great deals for the little "extra" bits that round out some of the items. (Like the knock-off wonder clips on Amazon Prime days to "fill" the basket. I bought a set for me to make sure they worked the same!)
                I also liked the option to get our Secret Santa name in August, as I still had time to make any adjustments for personalization of her gifts. No sense in making it in purple if she hates that color! I would love to have a name in February, but that isn't realistic as we all know there will be a heavy percentage of attrition.
                I liked being able to substitute for some of the monthly themes too. A couple of them just kicked my brain into neutral, and were a real struggle. I loved how everyone chimed in with ideas to help each other out when we got stuck!
                As for back up items, I'm in for making some. I think we need to think about the drop-dead-last-date though. We found out about the illness problem almost too late to correct the situation. While this could not have been foreseen, it does bring up timing. We are going to need at least a week to get a replacement parcel there. With all of the people purchasing stuff online now, I'm thinking the postal services aren't going to get any less clogged. An international ship date would obviously need to be much earlier.
                Having at least a monthly thread for the members to check in on was nice. It gave us a place to go back to and do some snooping for specifics on our giftee. It may seem like fluff, but it gives us a way to get to know you. The list of "interview questions" some filled out was also helpful when trying to nail down your favorites.
                All in all, I'm really pleased with the way the swap went this year.
                Be who you are and say what you feel
                because those who mind don't matter,
                and those who matter don't mind. - Dr. Seuss



                  I would very much like to keep it at 12 gifts. For me, one of the parts that I like about the swap is the themes and how they challenges me to think about what I want to do as well as giving me a chance to try something new to improve my sewing/quilting skills. Another thing that I really love about the swap is it is generally the only time I don't know what the Christmas present is going to be. It is the only time that I know that I will get something handmade and the thoughts of another quilter making/getting me sewing/quilting items.

                  As far as the themes for each month, knowing all of them early by at least May would be nice as I know everyone has different times of the year that are busier than other times of the year. As far as the themes themselves, maybe we do need to just have a calmer theme year and do the holidays or seasons of the year for 2018.

                  I would like to see the at least 75% handmade and the 2 quilters choice options remain in the rules.

                  If we do get the themes early, I do think that it would be possible to have 7 of the months done to have to turn in your picture by Sept 1 and get the names out by Sept 15.


                    I liked the "not just holiday" themes. I don't decorate for every holiday/season and it was fun to try new things like baskets and mini-quilts, even if I wasn't as successful as I would have liked.
                    Perhaps the monthly holidays could be the "fall back" option if we got stuck on a particular theme and no one has to work extra hard at coming up with a second set of idea So!
                    Be who you are and say what you feel
                    because those who mind don't matter,
                    and those who matter don't mind. - Dr. Seuss



                      Another vote for 12 themes. I think having the themes early would be helpful. Some months I found that when the next month theme came out what I had made for a previous month was more appropriate. It was fun though looking forward to the surprise of the next theme and I think it helped to stimulate conversation each month. Maybe a compromise of splitting the announcement of themes into two or three times.


                        One thought on the holiday themes is that holidays can vary in other countries.


                          This was my first year doing SS. I know I posted I might not sign up for 2018 I will. Opening those 12 gifts Christmas Day was the highlight of my year. My only concern was what I made and gave to my SS. None of it compared to what she made me and I felt bad. My stress was trying to come up with some awesome item before the next month theme was announced. I know if I knew the themes ahead of time it would be easier when I'm looking for ideas I might not find something for that theme but another theme. I felt pressured into doing that month and I couldn't find anything to make. And yes I could have skipped but didn't want to get behind. Not sure I'm explaining this right. I guess I'd like knowing the monthly themes ahead of time. As far as the last minute emergency I think the SS not receiving her box and the emergency one is sent she has to understand she won't get it by Christmas. We are all adults here and yes it's sad if it happens to you but receiving a prize a few days later isn't the worst thing in life. It's so awesome that there is a backup. The emergency box is a nice idea but their are people here that just step up and send something on their own as long as we are made aware of the problem. I like the idea of just sending something on our own. Might not be there on the 25th but the excitement of receiving something from an unexpected SS is exciting. Carlie you do an awesome job running this but understand passing it on. Not for me, I can't even get an email address right(as some of you know). Can you imagine if I was in charge.. ECK total nightmare. PS sure wish I knew where you guy get all your ideas. I'm starting now.


                            I also am in favor of the 12 gift rule. As for the themes I think that giving out 3-4 themes at a time is a nice compromise, leaves a bit of a surprise for those who like that and gives comfort to those that like to know things ahead of time. Maybe the leader could select themes ahead of time and that way she can eliminate and "sort of" duplicate themes.
                            I will also take this opportunity to encourage others to join in this swap, it is nice to have something to keep me busy with smaller projects during the year and gives me an opportunity to try a new technique, I hope my SS truly appreciates the not quite perfect craftsmanship. I know I am amazed at the work on the gifts I received-thanks SS!

                            Happiness is a FULL bobbin!


                              Well Beth not sure what you are taking about. Each one of your gifts are perfect and haven't found one imperfection. I'll say it again...zippers. And all your stuff is lined and the flower bag in my favorite color (with a zipper). Using your periwinkle bag (with a zipper) today to carry some stuff to my Bee Christmas party. I am one lucky SS. Oh and the fabric shopping zipper but a button so you can fold the bag up small and button it up and put in your purse. How clever is that?


                              Secret Santa 2017

                              About this Group

                              This is the 2017 Secret Santa M* Secret Santa Gift Swap. This is a year long, monthly themed event.

                              We have a lot of fun doing this every year. So come and join in on the fun.You may view the Gallery and Discussions by "joining" the Group. This Group will remain open for the remainer of 2017. For next years Secret Santa please join Secret Santa 2018.
                              Type: Public
                              Topics: 118
                              Comments: 1102

                              Latest Group Topics