[quote author=Muchu link=topic=884.msg9604#msg9604 date=1198967296]
Sometimes its clear that no effort has gone into it at all,I hate to sound ungrateful but I'd rather people didn't waste their money just for the sake of it.
I agree with this totally!! My brother's new wife went and got all the Christmas presents one year and because she can't get her head around me HE at all, she bought me a pack of wax crayons!! I suppose if you're weird enough to want to spend time with your children, then you obviously have no life beyond wax crayons!! It made me laugh to think how little she knows me! :D
I suppose it depends on whom the present is from. Are they likely to miss seeing it around your house? If not, the freecycle or charity shop. Children's things are trickier as they have usually been unwrapped and played with, even though you know the play-value will hardly last beyond New Year, but I tend to have a sort out of children's toys (with their approval always) every few years and things that they just don't play with anymore and that won't be useful for a younger sibling to grow into are found new homes.
I do always make sure the children say thank you and write thank you letters though, whatever they've been given, it's just polite I suppose.