My late great-grandmother gave the best gifts. She would show up to every family event with brown paper grocery bags full of vintage costume jewelry, old toys and flowery hats. I remember a particularly amazing pin that contained a real bee encased in clear resin. The bee horrified the adults at the dining table but I thought it was beautiful. Gram was an incurable yard sale addict and she never paid much money for any of the treasures, but they were always my favorite gifts. She seemed to know what would be magic to us little girls. As woman who survived the Great Depression with three young children, I am sure she enjoyed being able find and give these treasures to her great-grandchildren. I found a bunch of inexpensive costume jewelry on Ebay and have been putting them in a box for Christmas for my girls. (Here are a few listings). Maybe I should wrap them in a brown paper bag.
Here are a few other posts about Gram and things her thriftiness has inspired: