Saturday, December 3, 2011

Gift Guide: Holiday Weekend Edition

Welcome to a special weekend edition of Chief 187™Chatter during the 2011 Holiday Season. Many people find time to do their holiday shopping over the weekend so I thought I would offer

some more ideas for you to read, mull over, and print out to take on your journey. I always find list making helps to keep me focused, on budget, and in my time constraints.

Gift Ideas:

Clothing – Kids may roll their eyes, but even they like to look good, be comfortable, and be fashionable at even the youngest of ages. Apparel is often heavily discounted this time of year and works for boys and girls, men and women, close relationships and casual friends. Outerwear is a good bet with fleeces, vests, and jackets as options. If you know the sizes of the people you are buying, all the better. If you do not, think of a different category all together.

Accessories – Great because size is usually a nonissue, this category consists of scarves, gloves, hats, mittens, earmuffs, socks, neck ties, jewelry, wallets, handbags, belts, and even handkerchiefs. For every budget there is an appropriate, cool, and appreciated accessory.

Personalized items – Christmas is three weeks away so if an item says personalization takes 4-6 weeks, you are out of luck. Some places, however, will do it while you wait. Things Remembered is one such store that will put a name, date, saying, or anything else you can imagine on a blanket, music box, pen set, charm bracelet, locket, lighter, or Christmas ornament. No matter what item is chosen, the engraving makes it extra-special and all the more personal. Local jewelry stores, embroiderers, and t-shirt shops should be able to personalize items as well.

Classic Board Games – Yes, the digital world seems to have rendered our face time moot, but for those with families it is vitally important to “interface” periodically. Board games from yesteryear are still fun, competitive, entertaining, and reasonable! Monopoly, the Game of Life, Stratego, Clue, Othello, Connect 4, Candy Land, Chutes and Ladders, and Trivial Pursuit are all fantastic games worthy of a 1 night a week play. Have your kid be banker when he’s learning about money. Let your little girl figure out “whodunit” while playing Clue. Strategy, critical thinking, and competition are great gifts to give this holiday season.

An Experience – Tired of the same old same old? Want to deliver the most envied gift of the season? Give an experience. This needn’t be expensive although, if you have the funds, the sky is the limit. If you want to give your racing fan a week of lessons at Skip Barber in Lime Rock, Connecticut that would be amazing, but there are other ways to give an experience and not go into debt. Teach your teen to drive a stick (or your middle-aged wife). Invite your niece over to teach her how to bake delicious cakes and decorate them, too! Give your brother a promise to get his spring garden started. Plan a bike (I was thinking 10 speed, but motorcycles count, too) trip for a weekend with the newest cyclist in the family. Teach your granddaughter to play an instrument with weekly lessons taught by YOU! Plan a day trip over the Christmas holidays and present the itinerary on Christmas morning. You must be good at SOMETHING that can be manipulated into a gift for one or several of your family members! Get your “thinking cap” on and get busy making the gift of an experience come to fruition! This is the kind of gift YOU get to enjoy as well as give.

I hope whatever gifts you give, receive, and exchange, that this Christmas/Holiday Season is filled with smiles, handshakes, laughter, hugs, and kisses for those are truly the greatest gifts we can share all the yearlong.


  1. Love classic board games...I collect vintage editions. Careers is much different in the 1960 edition than it is today.

  2. You definitely win the prize for most enthusiastic Christmasteer ;-)