Ok, I am tickled pink with a sense of my own genius right now (go ahead and burst my bubble)! I'd been working towards extreme simplicity which meant paring down my massive book and DVD vice to a tiny handful, when the holidays hit and I receive three new books and two huge gift certificates for Barnes & Noble, plus another matching gift certificate to the same store coming this weekend. I'd already decided to turn those gift certificates into items donated to our library, since their budget is totaled, and lo and behold: B&N online is doing 40% off all its A&E box sets! That means I can treat my library and all the families in it to a box set of their Dickens, Bronte, and Austen adaptations, or maybe Poirot! I am feeling so beside myself with joy right now, I think that these gift cards just went from the WORST possible gift for me to the BEST! I wonder how the relatives will react when they see how happy I am because of their gift... and hear why!!
PS, That's wonderful about donating all the toys straight to the minister! If I hadn't gotten my family pretty well trained on the toy giving front (although their training is slipping), I think we'd have to do the same.