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Secret Santa | William T. Bix
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Is anyone planning a Secret Santa or holiday swap? Before Covid, there was Secret Santa Goes Postal and it was awesome!

My group will have a Secret Santa and separate card swap. Check out LiterALLy BOOKiSh on Facebook!

#secretsanta #swap #holidayswap #blinddatewithabook #bookswap #elfster #wishlists #winterswap #secretsantagoespostal #gifts #penpals #bookmail #postoffice #boxswap #ninja #raok #birthday #presents #christmas #christmascards

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I‘ve taken the time to really think about my response to these questions. I don‘t mean any disrespect or offense to anyone.
1. The many friendships I‘ve made. I‘ve seen true kindness & compassion.
2. I feel the swaps became an ugly monster on Litsy. Once the scamming, complaining, and likes & dislikes started the tone of Litsy changed for me personally. Im not against swaps but I do think it brought out a darker side. 👇🏼

Cinfhen 3. New stickers, please!!!

4. I post daily and sometimes multiple times a day.

5. I like that Litsy offers interactive/connective activities.

6. For me Litsy is foremost about books and sharing our love of books and reading. I do think a small handful of people have made Litsy about popularity or Litfluence points, so I‘d like to see that feature eliminated.
merelybookish Well said! 4y
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merelybookish I have also been thinking about these questions too...I know something has changed but haven't figured out exactly what...but I still love lots about Litsy. 4y
Cinfhen I agree @merelybookish I ❤️Litsy and the early days were magical. The first #SecretSantaGoesPostal swap started by @BookishMarginalia was AMAZING 🙌🏻 We just experienced growing pains but I still think this is THE BEST PLACE to talk about books (edited) 4y
GlassAsDiamonds I agree about the swaps, wholeheartedly. I loved the first swap I participated in but then they went crazy. They became geographically limited (so many US only) or with so many expected inclusions that international postage was just exorbitant. For a long time, every time I opened my Listy, a swap I couldn‘t participate in or wasn‘t welcome in was all I found.... or people complaining about said. They‘ve got to be managed better. 4y
BookwormAHN I know I stayed a way from joining Litsy for a while over the Litsy influence thing and I admit now that I've been here for awhile it can be fun to see the numbers increase. However I still think there is a lot of intimidation with that. 4y
Balibee146 Have to say I agree about the swaps too. I don't participate in them so apols if I sound a bit Bah Humbug. On opening days the posts now can crowd out everything else and with more and more swaps that scrolling experience has gone from a very occasional one to very regular. 4y
Cinfhen For me the swaps became like a hostage negotiation with so many demands which turned me sour from all swaps @GlassAsDiamonds @Balibee146 but I‘m not trying to ban them. I know they can be fun and enjoyable. But there does seem to be a swap for every occasion under the sun😂 4y
Lizpixie Well said my #sisterfromanothermister And yes, More Stickers Please!!⭐️ 4y
Balibee146 @cinfhen yup and multiple different ones sometimes for every occasion - which can suit different groups. I saw a suggestion about creating a way to filter them to a separate dedicated place.... Someone said you can already hide specific tags but I can't see how on my phone... These sorts of possibilities would be fab I think - swappers can have their fun without the whole feed getting filled up 😂😂💕 4y
Cinfhen Who doesn‘t love NEW stickers????? @Lizpixie 4y
Cinfhen On a desktop you can access Litsy and from the site there is an option to mute specific hashtags @Balibee146 4y
Balibee146 @cinfhen cool thanks 👍 4y
GlassAsDiamonds @Cinfhen oh yeah, they can be so much fun!!! But... I think they‘re out of hand and often highly exclusionary at the moment. Regulations would be good & maybe a way to corral them as well as @Balibee146 mentioned. I want to be able to participate in at least a few but at the moment it feels like we‘re creating these very hard divisions within Litsy between constant swapers and non/partial swappers. 4y
KT1432 @BookwormAHN so agree with this! I didn't post at all specifically for that reason. It can be intimidating. I think the best thing about Litsy is the interaction, so I definitely understand having something in place to try to keep that up, but maybe it could be something different. 4y
KT1432 @Cinfhen I always want new stickers!! And as someone who just started participating in swaps, it was a great experience for me but I can understand what you've mentioned and I also think it would be good to have a way to maybe separate them so they don't feel exclusionary or take over timelines all the time lol. Like a gifts/games tab maybe?? 4y
Hooked_on_books Initially, I LOVED the swaps. I thought they were such fun! And then I saw people really going overboard with their purchases and it felt more like a competition. Then I didn‘t receive a swap package at all because someone decided not to send me one. So I‘ve soured on swaps other than those set up between certain fabulous individuals. 😬 4y
erzascarletbookgasm Nicely said. And give me all the stickers!! 4y
Cinfhen Ohhhhh, a game/gift tag is a phenomenal idea @lele1432 @TimSpalding @Balibee146 @GlassAsDiamonds @Hooked_on_books (edited) 4y
erzascarletbookgasm I hope Litsy will remain the favoured platform to talk about BOOKS and books related stuff for all of us. Instead of turning it to another popularity thing. 😔 4y
Cinfhen New stickers seems like a simple request @lele1432 @erzascarletbookgasm 4y
Cinfhen I‘m not saying the Litfluence encourages that type of competition @BookwormAHN @lele1432 @erzascarletbookgasm but it does seem to create a sort of false hierarchy which is irrelevant to discussing books 4y
KT1432 Well stated! 4y
Balibee146 More Stickers would be awesome. I love the simplicity of the app but sometimes I wish I could quickly search friends' stacks to see if they have read and reviewed a book..... So many wonderful folks and I trust their opinions 😘😘 4y
batsy Thank you for your thoughts; I think I agree with almost everything. Like @merelybookish I feel something has changed and mainly I think it's the intimate feel. It does make me feel a bit sad; Litsy has always seemed different to me than other social media because it's more about connections and bookish chat instead of popularity and noise. 💜 4y
ljuliel Wow, this will be a challenging post to answer because if so many replies. I‘ll try to respond accordingly to everyone. First of all, @Cinfhen , thanks for your honesty. If there are things bugging people, it‘s best to say something so we can possibly address it. I agree with swaps. I did some in the past but won‘t do another. I think they‘re too lopsided in a way bi see some people getting a box load filled with items , while another gets 👇🏼 4y
ljuliel 👆🏼a toothpick and a pencil. I mentioned awhile back that they should have different levels for a swap ( like set amounts of money and you could join either a small, medium or large price range, so it was more fair) Then sometimes we have people coming out of the woodwork to be in things where they might win a prize, but we never see them any other time ......then those that get a nice box of items and don‘t send ANYTHING. They really bug me. 4y
ljuliel Swaps are a problem in my opinion. I‘m with others who would like to block certain hashtags so you don‘t see certain things, but that feature won‘t work for me. I‘m not sure why. It has to be done from the Litsy web page, not from the app. I type in the names time after time and it never takes them or saves them. I‘m not sure if swaps are the main reason so many Oldies left, but it could be for some of them. 4y
ljuliel @merelybookish thanks for posting in here. I hope you also filled out a questionnaire. I just woke up so catching up from middle of the night posts. 🙂 4y
ljuliel @GlassAsDiamonds I agree about the swaps. There‘s gotta be a way so all can participate if they want to. Maybe dividing the list up into regions would help ? I‘m not sure, but it really isn‘t fair that some are left out because of location. I know there used to be so many swaps that was what the majority of posts were. Way too many swaps at the same time. I also mentioned that awhile back, but was shot down.There CAN be too much of a good thing 4y
ljuliel @BookwormAHN Yes,the likes and points things CAN be looked at as a popularity thing, but I don‘t pay much attention to it anymore. I just prefer a good talk with other book people, so I don‘t care how many points they have 200 or 20,000. Doesn‘t matter. I just want people to participate, talk books, reviews, new books coming out, pretty covers, ebooks, audios, etc. Just talk books. That‘s why we‘re here. The numbers arent important. 4y
ljuliel @Hooked_on_books I‘m sorry you got ripped off in a swap. Exactly one of the reasons I don‘t like them. We have people that are members who never or rarely post, but they come out if the woodwork when the word SWAP is mentioned. They get a nice package but send nothing in return. That‘s REALLY nasty. I hate when that happens. I ran a few swaps where people didn‘t send their packages so I bought stuff and filled 2 more boxes for those left out.☹️ 4y
Hooked_on_books @ljuliel Yes, that‘s exactly what happens! Those people suck. I‘ve put together swap boxes for those who didn‘t get them as well. I remember how badly I felt, missing out on box opening day, and I hated for others to feel that way. I figure it‘s just not worth it and now I only swap books on an individual basis, which has been great. 4y
ljuliel @Balibee146 I know what you mean about scrolling through truckloads of swap posts to find a BOOK post. There‘s supposed to be a way to weed out certain hashtags, but it doesn‘t work for me. (edited) 4y
ljuliel @erzascarletbookgasm Agreed. I‘d like to focus a lot more on the book end of things. I won‘t go into any detail here , but I jumped into a lot of things social- wise in here earlier , and it ended badly with some folks. It makes me sad , but I‘ve learned that if I want to stay, I have to move on and only focus on the books and not get that involved again. It was hurtful , and there may be hurt feelings on the other end as well. I can‘t 👇🏼 4y
ljuliel Contact the others to open up the conversation. So I leave it alone. 4y
ljuliel @batsy I‘m hoping we can get some of that old feeling back. If we all work at it, I think it‘ll be a new and improved place. 💕 4y
BarbaraBB Great answers my friend. I must say I am hardly aware of anyone‘s Litfluence and agree with you it doesn‘t interest me in the least. It‘s the books and the people that make this such a great place. And I‘d like to work on it to keep it that way! 🧡 4y
janeycanuck Oh, it warms my heart to know I‘m not the only one wondering where the book posts are. As soon as I see a new swap, I screenshot it and mute the hashtag next time I‘m at the computer. I wish we could mute from the app. 4y
ljuliel @janeycanuck Sadly, the mute doohickey won‘t work for me. I‘ve tried it repeatedly. 4y
janeycanuck @ljuliel That really sucks. With what feels like the bulk of posts not being about books, I‘d probably have left Litsy by now if I couldn‘t mute. 4y
ljuliel @janeycanuck That makes me sad...that might be why so many others left. All we can do is try to get more focus on the books. I just have to keep on rolling to get past things I‘m not much interested in. I don‘t care if others like it..that‘s fine. I‘m just trying to stick with the books at this point. 4y
Mdargusch Yes yes yes yes yes yes! 4y
alisiakae I agree with almost all of this! I have cut down my participation in swaps tremendously, despite hosting one for my first time in Oct. I think the plethora of posts around some challenges (including ones I have participated in 😂) can get tiring, and I'm sure it's off-putting for some Littens who don't participate in them at all. There are a lot less reviews and book discussions in my feed these days. 4y
janeycanuck @ljuliel Yeah, I think it‘s great that people enjoy stuff and I don‘t want that to go away for them, I just don‘t want to see it. Everyone should be able to Litsy how they want to Litsy - and it would be awesome if the app could give people more control over their own experience. 4y
alisiakae @GlassAsDiamonds Would you be willing to share more detail about how swaps feel exclusionary? I only hosted my first swap last October, and am still on the fence if I will do it again next year during #Screamathon. But, if I do, I absolutely want to do whatever I can to make it as inclusive as possible. I cut down my swap participation tremendously, I do 2 a year at the most. 4y
Cinfhen I‘m not trying to bash Litsy or those that host/participate in the swaps but the swaps seem to shift the focus of Litsy a little bit and that saddens me @janeycanuck @4thhouseontheleft @Mdargusch @BarbaraBB 4y
alisiakae @Cinfhen I get that! I think these are important discussions to be had. 4y
GlassAsDiamonds @4thhouseontheleft I‘d love to (& be happy to take it to email if you‘d prefer so I‘m not ranting in @Cinfhen ‘s timeline!). I love swaps and I really don‘t want them stopped completely but there are SO many that are “US only”. International participation isn‘t that hard. We pay for the postage anyway so excluding us just seems lazy or worse. Similarly, price restrictions don‘t help if you aren‘t paying US prices whereas item limits are easy. 4y
alisiakae @GlassAsDiamonds I didn‘t realize that many excluded non-US Littens! That is a shame. I‘ve never seen price restrictions, but I admittedly don‘t look at the details of most swaps. 4y
GlassAsDiamonds @4thhouseontheleft oh man, the US Only! It‘s a nagging pain that‘s not just Litsy but since we‘re community building AND participants pay postage, it really annoys me here. Price limits are a great idea in theory and really help curtail the crazy consumerism BUT if I‘m buying a new book here in Singapore, I will not get out of it for US$20- no matter what I buy. A criteria like “one book and a bookmark” however is achievable world wide. 4y
ravenlee I really liked swaps at first. Now I don‘t. I‘ve followed the requirements, or even felt like I went a little over the top, and then I received either something so extravagant it makes me feel bad for my recipient to get so little, or I get the bare minimum or less and feel cheated. I did one for my daughter and we sent a nice gift, and what she got for hers was less than the posted minimum, and none of her interests. Broke my heart. 4y
Cinfhen I‘m so sorry that both you & your daughter had a bad swap experience @ravenlee 😔I think I would be heartbroken too if my child was soured by this experience. 4y
ravenlee She didn‘t mind so much, thankfully, but I was really frustrated. 4y
janeycanuck @Cinfhen Agreed! I‘d hate to see them go away for those who enjoy & participate. It‘s just not my cup of tea. Happily, muting works for me and I just hide them! 4y
Reviewsbylola I haven‘t bothered with the swaps in probably two years. They were fun initially but I don‘t miss doing them. 4y
Kalalalatja Well said Cindy! I miss participating in swaps, but it became too stressful, and soured my Litsy experience, so I stopped. 4y
Cinfhen I think we are lucky @Kalalalatja @Reviewsbylola as we have developed friendships and are able to create our own little book exchanges amongst ourselves❣️The swaps were fun in the beginning but they really got out of hand. I don‘t miss them at all!!! My last one was the #MugLove and I received the BEST MUG 💙🤗😘 4y
81 likes59 comments
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Cheers to hot summer days, wine and books. Thanks @Bookcation74 for this title from the #secretsantagoespostal swap. Enjoying both the #signed print and #audiobook versions. #mood

Branwen Cheers, friend! 💕 Enjoy! 📚🍷 4y
Booklover77 Looks like my kind of gal! Wine and books! Enjoy!! :) 4y
NikiDeaf Perfect! Wine and books are my fave combo 4y
Bookcation74 🥂 4y
150 likes6 stack adds4 comments
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#porchtime#cofffeeandbooks #birdsong

Starting my day the right way! Coffee in my beautiful mug from @Kdgordon88 ❤️ very few cars this time if day with school out; just birds singing.
Day trip with family today. I have this week off before I go back to work for the month of July. 🙌🏻

Elizabeth2 Perfection! 4y
Crazeedi Love your porch! And your mug! Have a wonderful day! 4y
kspenmoll @Crazeedi Love the mug too! A gift from @Kdgordon88 my #secretsantagoespostal friend! I am on my way to a hike near Brattleboro VT with family😁 4y
Howard_L What‘s on the plate? Blintzes? Kolache, Klobasnek? 4y
74 likes5 comments
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WOW!!! What a magnificent package, and to think all the way from GERMANY! 😍 I love all the books and goodies and gift you sent. The Scarf Passport is the sweetest. @scripturient @BookishMarginalia I cannot wait to participate in another exchange. #Litsycommunity is the best!!!
#SecretSantaGoesPostal #SummerSolsticeBookExchange

Krystle13 @scripturient Thank you again for everything! Tonight I will be enjoying a cup of tea you sent and one of the books!!!😍 4y
scripturient I‘m glad you like it! I had a lot of fun picking things out for you! 😘 4y
Krystle13 @scripturient I just sat down and was looking at it again, I just realised the candies are BOOKS!!! LOL. That's awsome.🤗 4y
23 likes4 comments
Untitled | Unknown
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@Mitch Thank you for everything you put in the #secretsantagoespostal box! It‘s very fun and summery! ☀️ The books off my TBR are great! And I have to say it‘s especially cool having the non-US cover/version of Beartown. I hadn‘t even known they‘d changed the name for publishing in the US.

Thank you again for everything! You‘re so kind! 😀 ❤️


Mitch Yeah... glad it made it in one piece! Hope you enjoy some pool days x 4y
ephemeralwaltz Whoaa that Beartown fact just blew my mind. I had no idea! I'm not sure I like the alternative title though. 4y
34 likes2 comments
Summer Santa | Ward Maia
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Dear @nelehelen , thank you so much for the care package! The books are absolutely perfect for my upcoming trip and the paper products are amazing! The fan is lovely —and useful, since it‘s so hot here now. And I absolutely love the warthog bookmark from your honeymoon in South Africa. Thank you for sharing the love with me 💜💜💜

#SecretSantaGoesPostal #SummerSolsticeBookExchange #OpeningDay

squirrelbrain So much lovely stationery! ❤️😋 4y
Dragonfairykats Beautiful! Looking at the covers of the books, I'm going to look them up lol 4y
batsy 😍😍 4y
nelehelen Yay! So happy you didn‘t already have the books! Thank you for organizing!!! ♥️♥️♥️ 4y
107 likes4 comments
Summer Santa | Ward Maia
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I absolutely LOVE the socks! You chose everything so well, @LeahBergen 👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼💜💜💜💜 #SecretSantaGoesPostal #SummerSolsticeBookExchange #OpeningDay

LeahBergen I had to get a pair for myself, too. 😆 4y
ShelleyBooksie Is that a cat pouch in the background? Adorable. @BookishMarginalia - I look forward to your review of Wenjack. 4y
Dragonfairykats Those are definitely awesome socks! 4y
118 likes3 comments
Summer Santa | Ward Maia
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You chose very well, @LeahBergen — such a great mix of wonderful books! I want to get reading right away! 💜💜💜 #SecretSantaGoesPostal #SummerSolsticeBookExchange #OpeningDay

Lindy ❤️ 4y
LeahBergen Awesome! I‘m so glad you like them. 👏🏻👏🏻 Did the chocolate survive its travels? 😬 4y
BookishMarginalia @LeahBergen Chocolate arrived safe, sound, and delicious 👍🏼 (edited) 4y
102 likes3 comments
Summer Santa | Ward Maia
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I just had to take a picture of the wrapped books with the little notes on them. It‘s like #BlindDateWithABook but better! And the book paper is just beautiful! Thank you, @LeahBergen #SecretSantaGoesPostal #SummerSolsticeBookExchange #OpeningDay

Jennick2004 OMG lovely wrapping paper!!!! 4y
LauraJ So thoughtful! 4y
AmyG Awesome! 4y
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TrishB Lovely 💕 4y
Sarah83 @LeahBergen you did a wonderful job 😍 4y
squirrelbrain Wow! So pretty! ❤️ 4y
LeahBergen I think I had a bit too much fun wrapping these. 😆 4y
StillLookingForCarmenSanDiego That paper is fantastic 4y
Gissy Ese papel Wow! 4y
128 likes10 comments