Recently our daughter moved to a new city. Many of her belongings stored at her previous home in Africa would take at least 3 months to arrive in Washington, DC. She thought she would help me out with my ongoing disbursal of extra household items by taking a few things from our home. She really only wanted “trash” – stuff that I didn’t need but that she could use temporarily until her own stuff arrived.

Her requests: several mugs, a hand mixer, towels, and a blanket. And, oh yes, remember that elegant chinchilla stole that Nana passed down to her but she didn’t want to take to Africa. Now she might have a use for it. It’s a keeper.

These were easy requests. I still had a few extra mugs, towels, blankets, and one hand mixer that worked most of the time. Her plan was to pass these things on to others once her own supplies arrived. She figured she was doing me a favor by giving me an opportunity to further clear out extra stuff. She was right. The nice thing is that she understood the value of passing things on and not buying unnecessary duplicates. I can’t imagine having an occasion to wear a chinchilla stole anyway. 🙂

Other temporary gifts that sometimes come my way are trinkets, favors, and similar swag that you might get at meetings. If I can’t pass it on to someone who needs it, I keep a basket of such stuff for visiting kids and invite them to “pick a treat.” The only problem is that I fear I might be helping them develop a habit of accumulating useless stuff. What do you do with swag you don’t need or want?