Ever wonder why parties only happen when there’s something to celebrate? Change that up and fill your calendar with fun gift exchange events for every day of the year! 

My aunt is really into hosting, entertaining, decorating...basically all things home or home-y and she’s in. She has great taste followed by great ideas, a combo that just can’t be beat. Something I have become increasingly aware of as I’ve gotten older is that there is never a good time for anything. Why wait to plan a party or event or even a simple social gathering until the next holiday rolls around when you could do it tomorrow or a week from now? There's a reason hardworking people look forward to the weekend...other than having a couple of days off, people as a whole like to have things to do. I know I do!

My aunt has a serious knack for different party themes and she has invited me to several of her get-togethers over the past couple of years. Everyone in attendance always has the best time and that makes it all worth it! To tie this all together and get straight to the point, I think there’s something to celebrate every day and there’s no reason why we shouldn’t! With my aunt as an inspiration, I am going to share with you a few of my favorite fun gift exchange ideas that are 10x better than secret Santa or white elephant gift exchanging. It’s more of an “everyone wins” gathering rather than a “bring your junk you don’t want and pawn it off on someone else” kinda shindig. No one wants your junk! Besides, the stealing aspect is sad...someone made me cry when I was like 9 because they stole one of my gifts...what kind of adult steals from a 9-year-old? Sigh. Still bitter.

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I think the best one, or at least my personal favorite, should get to go first: DIY wreath making party. Wreaths are not just meant for Christmas, but for every day of the year! The front door is what everyone sees first so why not dress it up a little (or a lot)? Invite your friends over and encourage them to bring scissors, hot glue guns, and the simple basics that any wreath needs to get started. You can feed off each other’s ideas and enjoy snacks and drinks together! See, doesn’t that sound like good clean fun?! YES. I’m all about this drink umbrella Fourth of July wreath...I think I may have to make one of these for myself!

Gift Exchange Party Swaps DIY Wreath Do It Yourself Holiday Celebrate Red White and Blue Fourth of July the 4th Drink Umbrellas

Via A Blissful Nest

I feel like it’s a normal habit to make the same recipes on a loop, at least it’s something I know I do. Once you get something down and don’t have to even look at the recipe anymore, it might be time to add a new recipe into the rotation. That’s the exact reason why I love the idea of throwing a recipe swapping party. Here’s what you do: have guests bring their favorite recipe on a card or tag (take note of allergies guests may have), tell them to package all of the ingredients in a basket or gift box, and to neatly wrap them. Once friends and family arrive, draw names or numbers to choose which recipe box they want! It’s extra fun because it’s called a “recipe box party”...see the humor in that? You’re literally putting a recipe in a box… It’s a true gift.

Gift Exchange Party Swaps Recipe Box Cookbook Share Party Time Event Planning Hostess Gifts

Via Party Frosting

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A cookie exchange is ideal for all times of the year because who doesn’t like cookies? It’s similar to the recipe box idea but you make the treats beforehand. Have cards written or typed out with the recipe and instructions for admirers to snatch up and try for themselves! ! This is totally my kind of party because not only do we all get sweet treats, we get the recipes too! How great is that? This holiday-themed scape does this party well, I must say!

Gift Exchange Party Swaps Cookie Swap Recipe Box Share Tablescape Black and White The Nutcracker Cookies Desserts Party

Via Pizzazzerie

Celebrate for no reason! Use these #party ideas and themes to host your own get-together! #celebrate

Posted by FurnishMyWay, LLC on Wednesday, January 4, 2017

For your more intellectual bookworm-y friends, a book-themed gift exchange is just the ticket/perfect gift! It’s fun to spur friends along their scholarly journey, i.e., it’s a great way to get rid of those old books you can’t fit on your bookshelf. Plus you can share books you like with the people you love, and that’s a wonderful thing to do. More in-depth instructions and thoughts on how to get this partay started can be found here. Get really into it with fantastic invites like these:

Gift Exchange Party Swaps Book Exchange Party White Elephant Present Gifts Garage Sale Raffle Ticket Invitations

Via Pizzazzerie

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My last idea for y’all is more of a holiday meets home decor concept and is also a DIY (which is perfect for everyone bc fun). GARLAND. Get excited people!!!! I love Christmas decorations and the holiday season in general so please excuse my over the top enthusiasm. Or don’t. It’s better if you just get ecstatic with me!! There are so many cool ways to make garland. It ain’t all popcorn and cranberries anymore, folks. It’s about glamour and glitter and feathers and gold and pine cones and spray paint and….you get the idea. You can totally make this however you want, whether this is holiday themed, birthday themed, or themed to match the decor in your own homes. These are meant to be fun, and bring people together while making something beautiful. Doesn’t that sound awesome?

Gift Exchange Party Swaps DIY Feather Garland Dipped Gold Glitter White Lights Christmas Time Holiday Season Home Decor

Via Homedit

If you haven’t already noticed, I have a passion for parties and events! Make it a goal to celebrate something every day. We are all so lucky in so many different ways! If you can’t muster up the time, energy, or creativity to throw one of these together, share this with someone who feels how I do! I truly think that planning time with friends and family is an event to look forward to, even without all the glitz and glamour. If you have thoughts or other gift swap ideas you want to share with me or perhaps a question on how to throw one of these together, let me know by commenting below. I love hearing from you all!

**Featured image via Arqueologia Domestica