Not Cheap But Not Feeling All Too Obligated Either

Dear Jewish Fairy Godmother:

What’s etiquette for people you feel obligated to give a gift to, but
neither particularly like, nor want to spend a lot of money on? Most of
them make more than we do, and I am comfortable. I also hate waste.

Not Cheap But Not Feeling All Too Obligated Either

Dear Not Cheap:

A lot depends on the timing, so you may need to hold this idea until
earlier in December next year, but it works from now to eternity. Pick
a charity you care about. There’s a zillion needy and deserving non-
profits, all of which could/would make better use of whatever you
would contribute. Pick one or two, and tailor the note below
accordingly. Send to each and any on your “no gift” list, preferably in a
nice card.

Dear [Recipient]: As you know we live in a world of abundance than
many on the planet do not share at the level of material comfort we
enjoy. I thought about getting you any manner of beautiful clothing,
household décor, exotic condiment, or rare vintage. Instead I decided
to donate in your name to [organization]. They feed the hungry,
create shelter for the homeless, provide protection to refugees, etc
etc. I know you have a big heart and a generous soul, and will support
this choice that I am making on your behalf. If, for some reason, you
do not, please tell me, and let’s forever release one another from the
obligation of reciprocal gifting. Best wishes for the New Year. I hope it
is filled with all the blessings you deserve.