Wednesday, November 28, 2012

2012 Holiday Gift Guide

Welcome to the 2012 Holiday Gift Guide on Freestyle Wednesday on Chief 187™Chatter.

Over the years I have bought literally thousands of gifts for all people – young and old, male and female, strangers, acquaintances, friends, and family. I am a gift buyer. Nothing revs my engines more than having the opportunity to shop for Christmas gifts year round.

In all of my years I have certainly duplicated gifts several times. There are tried and true items that just always work because they are that good.

I am not reinventing the wheel with these gift suggestions, just putting the spotlight on the favorite gifts I have either given or received.

Gift Ideas

Flashlight – After the experience I had with Superstorm Sandy in my beloved New Jersey, I know the value of a high quality, large, and fabulous flashlight. Headlamps are great, Maglites are tremendous, and dozens of other options are ideal. Save the little flashlights for the stocking, but invest in a good quality one for a gift.

Luxurious “wrap” – Call it a Pashmina, a generous scarf, a shawl, or a covering, but definitely purchase one for a lady in your life. Available in fashionable colors and styles and so many fabrics to suit the climate she lives in, the “wrap” is wonderful to wear alone to throw over one’s shoulder, layer with a coat, and/or cover one in a plane. It is versatile, fashionable, and truly never goes out of style. From cashmere and cotton to fleece there are versions galore from which to choose.

Home improvement store gift card – New home owners, old home owners, and anyone who lives in a place can benefit from these gift cards. Things break, need fixing, projects begin, gardens are planted, and appliances are needed. This is the “department store” for those who are hands on in their lives.

Jewelry – This may not appeal to everyone, but usually people love some type of jewelry. Watches, bracelets, necklaces, pendants, earrings, navel rings, anklets, and rings come in every price point and style. He may collect timepieces and fancy a ring. She may be looking for a great new look or a classic piece. Jewelry has the added bonus of being very sentimental.

Books – Hard cover, paperback, or now e-reads are still a fabulous addition to the holidays. There are coffee table books, best-selling fiction reads, recipe books, biographies, collections of favorite comic strips, and so very much more. Reading is still one of the best gifts to give people of all ages.

Cake/Beer/Pizza-of-the-Month gift – If you are creative then try to make something for 3, 6, or 12 months of the year for the giftee. Not so much handy? Then purchase a six-pack of beer, a new wine, or a different style pizza for the recipient. The gift that keeps on giving, provides opportunity for you and the giftee to spend more time together (if that is desired), and is that need not find a place on the over-stuffed curio cabinet.

An experience – Did he always want to drive a race car? Did she want to para-sail? Did the children want to go to Hershey Park? Give the gift of “doing” instead of another sweater or dust-collector. There are as many options as ideas! Concert tickets, massages, horse-back riding lessons, skydiving instruction, instrument/voice lessons, and much much more are among the many ideas from which to choose. You are only limited by your imagination (and budget!).

Music – Not all people like the same music, but it seems most people love music. If you don’t know the recipient’s taste, try to go with a gift card like an iTunes or Amazon one.

Flowers/plants – Cut flowers are nice, but die after a week or so. But potted plants, a small tree, bulbs, etc. can flourish for years to come. Nothing brightens a room, a home, or a property like live plants. It’s good for the environment and provides healthier living.

Provide a service – Dad getting too old to mow the lawn? Offer your time. Mom wants the bathroom painted for five years now, give her a weekend and your services. Grandma needs to get to the store once a week, step up! Grandpa needs a golfing buddy? Pick up your sticks. Where there is need there is a gift in some form or fashion. Spending time with one another is a great gift, but when you add a service that makes your loved one’s life easier, that’s a supreme gift!

These 10 ideas should work for all of the people on your list. Men, women, children, young, old, those who have little to those who seem to have it all, something on this list should click.

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas Season and Happy Holidays!

If you have gift ideas you would like to share, please do so in the comments below.

Please join me tomorrow for recipes on Tantalizing Thursday on Chief 187™Chatter.

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