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I live in a small rural town where pay is low and times are tough right now. I know how much we usually spent on our son for Christmas, but have often thought that we went overboard. He's never had grandparents, aunts, uncles, or cousins to buy him any gifts, so all he got was from us. He was by no means spoiled, and often waited for Christmas to get new things like clothes.
First off, see what they might need, instead of cash. We have 4 adult children, and they will let us know things they want or need, for example, one daughter and her husband requested an electric griddle, the next year her sister asked for one. When you get them something they need, they seem to appreciate it more, however, your support and backing will probably mean more to them then gifts.
Ask them ! We have a grandson in college and we send him small gift cards to gas stations and grocery stores every month. He calls to say he appreciates it. I keep track, because we have 4 more behind him.
I really appreciate the responses, but I think I may need to clarify my question. In the past, we did ask what they needed, and have helped buy tires, pots and pans, money to see her parents and to come home, etc. But that was then and this is now. They have all the basics they need at this time. They also have steep student loans, and would prefer money instead of gifts. I cannot call them up and ask how much money they think would be appropriate to send.
My question is: When sending a grown, married child and his wife a gift of cash for Christmas, a birthday, a graduation, or whatever, what are deemed appropriate amounts?
I'd just like some ball-park figures to assure myself that we are neither being cheap nor going overboard. I am asking strictly about cash amounts--no gifts or gift cards. I know that I'm not the only person to be wrestling with this question. I appreciate everyone's help.
I think I would base the $$$ on how much I could easily afford. Just a ball park figure that sounds about what I would do is $200.00. If you're so inclined I think it would be nice to give a "gift for no reason" to help out with school, etc LATER. I think giving TOO much for Christmas sets a precident and as you get older money will probably get tighter and you might feel you have to live up to past performances. Lot of words to say $200.00 but that's me!