21 October 2008

Use Google Documents to share family gift lists

It's not too early to start jotting down holiday gift ideas. Michelle's come up with a good way to collaborate on family gift-giving:

Use Google Documents to share the holiday gift list with your spouse and extended family. You can set up a document so that only the people you invite can view and edit the list. Let your family know what you are getting for your kids and find out what they might want as well.

We use Amazon Wish Lists in my family, but I like that these lists are store-independent.

Related: How to buy gifts for young kids when they're always with you at the store

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I set up all our lists on google docs too and share with my husband. That way we have updated lists for our family. I'm trying to convince my parents and ILs and my husband's brothers to get on there too so we can see an updated list for everyone we buy for.

actually, amazon has added a service where you can add any item from the web to your wish list.

We use Kaboodle for this.

I played around with a lot of gift list sites last year until settling on Wishpot:


I created and can manage lists for each member of the family, plus a joint list for big ticket items. Each list has its own RSS feed that I add to our blog during the holidays and birthdays. Best feature is the browser add-on button that makes adding items a snap.

Andrea- the "Add to Wish List" button has changed my life! I recommend that for anyone who is looking to centralize their gift lists.

I wanted to add that you can put more than just wish list stuff on the document. You can just talk about their interests if you'd like.
I really don't like the idea of a 'wish list' just buy me this or that. I think it puts the creativity back into the hands of your family and let's them have the final say on what they are going to buy.
I personally like presents a lot more if someone said 'I saw this and thought of you' rather than 'this exact item was on your wish list so I pointed in clicked'. Just MO.

Last year we did a combination of the Amazon wish list and an email (with the link) plus information about current interests, clothing sizes, general ideas, gift card locations, etc. It worked great, especially since our families are all over the country. I also have family members that call in late October, wanting to know "what is on your list". So this was a good way to reduce duplicates and give people ideas. My husband and son’s birthdays are in January and February, so it worked for the birthdays too.

I list the kids sizes and interests in the "Unique Facts" section on their Amazon Wish List. So far I'm really liking their "Add to Amazon Wish List" button to add any webpage desired.

I am setting up a wiki for our family, who are always asking for gift ideas for the kids. Nice thing about the wiki is that if someone buys something from the wiki, they can edit the page themselves and cross the item off, preventing duplication from in-laws on different sides of the family.

I've been using www.mygiftlist.com to manage our wish lists, and it works great. I like that it's not linked to any particular retailer - I've put things down like "babysitting" and "homemade cookies" - and visitors can check off the things they have purchased so there aren't any duplicates.

We've used Writeboard for this. We used it when planning a Christmas with family overseas. We put our travel itinerary there - the people we were visiting added suggestions about places to go, with links to the relevant websites. We also put the present lists there - which helped avoid duplication, especially of stocking stuffers. It was easy to indicate when something had been bought.

We've been using Boxed Up (www.boxedup.com) for awhile now...we really like it. You can make a badge for your website, and it's easy to add items from any website. We have lists for each member of the family as well as a family wish list.

We use wishlist.com. There are a lot of options out there,now.

I am now in love with Google Documents for all sorts of reasons - this is another one. I am a writer and being able to edit with my coauthor - priceless. Keeping track of all sorts of different things on various computers - life changing.

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