11/29/2011 02:44 pm ET Updated Jan 29, 2012

Holiday Gifts: A Plea For Thoughtfulness

Yes, I'm aware that it's the thought that counts but I am also of the age where I detest clutter. When I was younger I enjoyed collecting things and even lining up the various tchotkes and other well-intentioned gifts that I got for Christmas and Hanukkah. But now, I guess I have turned into a scrooge because if I get one more body lotion, one more picture frame or one more scented hand lotion, I am going to scream. I do donate these items and feel very good about bringing them to Goodwill but please think about sending a simple card before sending me one more bar of soap that I don't need. You see when you give me one of those items then I get the impression that the gift has nothing to do with me and everything to do with your being able to cross me off your checklist.

I, too, have been guilty of picking up five scented candles, four boxes of chocolates, three pairs of generic earrings and two extra scarves, when I get exhausted and simply want to be finished with my gift shopping. These items just simply seem to scream from their cluttered shelves and tables-"Grab a few of me and be done with it." Well, this year I am going to resist the temptation of those chaotic tables and shelves and leave extra time to select items that have personal meaning for the people that I give gifts to. I mean, how many scarves can you really wear with the one winter coat that you've fallen in love with? How many tubes of lotion can you stuff into your night table drawers? And, oh dear, some of those scents seem to mimic the smells of something that someone may want to have for dessert rather than to slather on your dry skin. So, this is a call to action to all of my beloved but harried friends. We are all on to each other.

Let's do a little better this year!