Gifts for that Tricky Giftee

Do you have a list of people to shop for that are tricky to buy for? I want to help you this year by listing some gift ideas that will hopefully spark inspiration for you (and me).

  • Teachers: They are the people who mold the minds of our country’s future leaders – they deserve some pampering and goodies for their hard work.
    • Manicure Bundle: Place a luxurious hand lotion, nail polish, pair of comfy gloves, emery board, and peppermints into a cute little box (without the cap – you can find one at the Dollar Tree) and wrap it in cellophane with some cute curly ribbon.
    • Pampering Bundle: Use a medium sized glass vase and add a face mask, small candle, cute sleep mask, candy canes and/or chocolates, and an ornament before wrapping in cellophane and tying with ribbon.
    • Coffee Run Bundle: Add a small bag of freshly ground coffee to a cute mug, wrap it in cellophane and tie a Starbucks (or other coffee shop) gift care at the top with ribbon. You could also do this with tea!
  • Coworkers: Yes, I am talking about Secret Santa.
    • Movie night bundle: Place a few bags of instant popcorn, a couple boxes of candy, popcorn seasoning, and a local movie theater gift card in a reusable plastic popcorn bag (you can buy them on Amazon). Wrap the gift in cellophane and tie with ribbon.
    • Game night bundle: Place a deck of cards (or UNO) , left-right-center game, board game, snacks (trail mix, dried fruit, chips) into a cute box wrapped in cellophane with a ribbon.
    • Baking bundle: Set an oven mitt, kitchen towel, wooden spoon, and cookbook into a brownie pan wrapped in cellophane (and tie with ribbon – you get the idea).
  • Neighbors: If you like your neighbors, that is.
    • Cookie Platter: Bake a bunch of different kinds of cookies, put a few of each in a cute tin lined with parchment paper, add a bow and tah-dah!
    • Baking Jar: Make brownies in a jar or another recipe in a jar, attach a small wooden spoon (and the recipe/directions) with ribbon and deliver them to your neighbors.
  • Significant other: Focus on their passions, what they spend the most time doing, and what would make their life easier.
    • My husband enjoys learning about brewing beer and trying new drinks from local companies. One of the first holidays we had together (before he started brewing his own beer) I got him a beer bottle holder in the shape of the U.S. It was a good excuse for us to try new companies’ products to fill up spots on the board.
    • We both love traveling, so another gift I bought my husband is a scratch off world map. When we travel to a new state or country, we scratch off that area. It’s a satisfying gift that will entice us to continue traveling.
    • Amazon devices are great gifts too. We have an Echo, a dot and just bought a second dot (they are on sale for only $20 right now!) I also have a Kindle Paperwhite (for reading) which was a favorite gift of mine and is on sale right now too. With the Echo and dots we can communicate from different rooms, stream music, Google search, enjoy audio books, play games, and so much more. The Paperwhite gives me access to hundreds of books with only a couple of clicks (I have the Kindle unlimited subscription, so I don’t have to buy books individually, I just pay a small fee monthly for however many books in their library that I would like to read).
    • Subscriptions are great too! Like I said, I have the Kindle Unlimited subscription and I love it. It’s great for any avid reader with an Amazon Kindle device. If someone loves listening to audio books or loves to read, but doesn’t have a ton of free time to sit and enjoy a book, services like Audible are a great option! You could also buy them a year of Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu or other great services.
    • Handmade gifts are an awesome idea. One of my favorite gifts ever is this small wooden canvas that my husband used a wood-burner to engrave roses and a message to me. It’s sitting on our bedside table and I love looking at it every day.
    • I think the best gifts are experiences. Tickets to a concert, a trampoline park, a Broadway show, a hockey game…are all great options for a gift. These kinds of presents are perfect for a person who already has everything – they don’t take up much space, build memories, and give you an excuse to do something new together. Honestly, spending quality with the people we love is the best present anyone could ask for.
  • Parents:
    • Family photo session (gift certificate or already planned). You could also do a session of all of their children (and grandchildren if there are any), print out a group photo as a canvas, and give it to them as their gift.
    • Put together a date night for your parents! Include a gift certificate to their favorite restaurant, a bottle of wine, and some fancy chocolates. This gives them an excuse to go out together and have a good time (not that they need an excuse)!
    • Surprise family gathering: Do you have a sibling who lives far away and doesn’t get to visit often? Surprise your parents by helping your sibling travel home for the holidays. Having their kids work as a team to get the family together for Christmas (or any holiday that you celebrate) would be a great gift for your parents!
  • Friends:
    • Something that reminds you of time you spend together: If you and your friend drive around country roads on the weekends, maybe you should buy her a crystal charm to hang from her rear-view mirror. If you guys like to cook or bake together, maybe you should look at kitchen supplies such as a personalized wooden cutting board.
    • Something that you created yourself: If you enjoy crocheting, make your friend a scarf or blanket with their favorite colored yarn. If you enjoy photography, make a “gift certificate” for a photo session that they can use for themselves, as a couples/family session, or with their pet! If you enjoy calligraphy, you can personalize a stained wooden canvas with a saying or their last name. You can find a ton of inspiration for this on Pinterest! These are great gift ideas if you are on a strict budget this year, but they are also super heartfelt.
    • Something that will pamper them: Face masks, bath bombs, nail polish, body scrubs, soft sweaters, pajama pants, fluff socks, and other skin care products are awesome gifts to put together or gift separately.

 

I hope that this list of gift ideas helped to get your creativity flowing. Gift giving can be tricky, but you can do it! Don’t break the bank this holiday season – give gifts that are meaningful and affordable.

Love Always,

Elizabeth

Tidy Your Life

A while ago I posted about rearranging my kitchen so that I could easily access my spices. Let me just say that it has made life so much better and I’m glad that I took the leap to change the tiny thing in my life that was holding me back. Today I want to talk about two other little things in my house that I recently changed and how they have drastically impacted our lives already.

Maybe it’s just me, but although my house is nowhere near perfect and ultra-tidy constantly, I hate living in disorganization. One of the most frequently cluttered areas of our house is the cupboard next to our front door. We have the tendency to walk in the door and drop everything from our hands and pockets onto the table. No matter how many times I clean it, we always seem to accumulate more junk. I finally decided that our system in place was not working and we needed to re-evaluate our process.

My first step was to see what kind of clutter we were accumulating. It was mostly mail, change, pens/pencils, and work equipment (badges and such). We now have a designated location in a basket on the wall for mail. This way it is easily accessible and it can be sorted when we have the time. Inside the cupboard we have three baskets. There is a basket for my stuff (my pens, headbands, and whatever else I try to leave on the cupboard), a basket for my husband’s stuff (badge, pencils, papers), and a basket for our dog’s stuff (her leash, doggy bags, harness, treats). We also have a little glass candle holder for change in the cupboard. That way we are each responsible for our own basket (okay, maybe I’m responsible for Mia’s basket too) and everyone knows where to find their stuff without cluttering our living room surfaces. This process has been relatively successful since we started about two weeks ago. It may take a bit of reminding and persistence to make organization a habit, but it will be so worth it!

The second place that I recently reorganized is our gift wrapping supplies. We have a large pink plastic tote that we shove everything in and it has always been a disaster trying to find what we need. We typically end up re-buying things because we either don’t want to have to go through the tote or we just simply can’t find what we are looking for. So, as a solution, I reorganized the entire thing. I paper-clipped the tissue paper together according to color. I used an accordion folder to further organize stickers, cards, ribbons, and other gift-wrapping supplies. We also have gift bags and boxes that I was able to organize in the tote. Having everything in one central location in a neat and orderly fashion makes it not only less taunting to get gift wrapping done, but it also stops us from buying unnecessary supplies.

What spots in your home drive you crazy or need a little TLC? Spend an hour this week listening to an audio book, podcast, or music while you reorganize this area in a way that better suits you and your family’s needs.

Love Always,

Elizabeth