On Gifts


I recently gave a gift, and started thinking that I didn’t really address gifts in my ration plans. Of course, if you were going to give a gift back during wartime, it would need to be something that was not rationed, come from your ration book, or be something you could create from things you already had. When I watched Wartime Farm, I learned that many gifts (especially toys for children) during the war were handmade from the most random things (and came out so charmingly!), and also a very popular and appreciated gift was a bar of soap (soap rations, you know).

After much mulling over, I decided to be true to the spirit of my challenge, rather than the law: I would not subtract coupons for purchased gifts that fell into my three categories of clothing, soap, or tea. The reason I started this challenge was to monitor my personal consumption and find creative ways to do more with less. When it comes to others, I want to let my heart dictate what I give, not my ration book!

That being said, when I was purchasing said gift, I threw in a few things for myself (sheepish grin) — that’s the kind of gift I need to report! I purchased 300 grams of yarn. 300 g = 10.5822 oz, let’s call it 11oz. 2 oz of wool = 1 coupon, so let’s just say 6 coupons. Fractions, smackshions! As long as I round up, it’s fair I think.

I also want to note that I’ve been the recipient of some really lovely gifts since I’ve been on the ration. I have to tell you the truth — receiving gifts when you are limiting what you purchase feels 100000000000000 times more beautiful and touching and exciting and tender! One’s appreciation soars. Have I mentioned lately how fruitful working this challenge has been? đŸ™‚


Clothing: 21 out of 66
Soap: 24 out of 36
Tea: NONE out of 10

image: pretty little gift from http://antiqueimages.blogspot.com/ where you can find scads of restored antique and vintage royalty-free images.


  1. I thoroughly agree! These rationing experiments are not about recreating the past but about learning from it to make today richer.

    And yes, when you’re living with less, gifts truly are precious treats that make the heart sing! But I also think that living with less makes us even more generous people too. Cutting out the extraneous deepens our joy in small delights and our desire to spread that joy through sharing.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s