Christmas Holiday Gift Giving

Gift givingChristmas holiday gift giving is a custom filled with noble intentions that sometimes have the unintended effect of sapping the cheer from shoppers. At Christmastime, we set out to choose gifts that show our affection and appreciation, but the process of finding the perfect gift can create stress. That said, to help get you started we have some tips for you to keep your holiday gift giving pleasurable and stress free!

Keep the holiday cheer in your gift giving with these simple tips:

  • Start early – don’t leave your shopping to the last minute hoping that the perfect gift will materialize. You will end up amongst thousands of other frenzied shoppers abandoning your budget, forgetting your good intentions, and buying anything you can find.
  • Create a budget and stick to it. Holiday gifts don’t have to cost a lot to be meaningful and valued by the recipient.
  • Make it personal. Before you head to the mall, spend some time thinking about each person on your list – What are their interests? What could they use?
  • A word of caution for on-line shoppers. Order early to avoid the item being, “Out of Stock.”

Still not sure what to buy? The following list of gift suggestions and ideas may help get you started as you think about the loved ones on your list:

For the avid reader

  • Books. Of course, if you don’t know what genre they prefer or what they have already read, consider a gift card for a bookstore.
  • For a book lover who has a long commute, consider an audio book they can play while driving.
  • Bookmarks are available in a range of unique styles and quality and make wonderful small gifts, stocking-stuffers, or gift tags.
  • Out-of-print and collector editions would be treasured by the book collector in your life.

For teens and young adults

  • Anyone who has recently started driving would appreciate a gas card.
  • For the University student, a gift card to the University book store may be appreciated.
  • Gift card to a favourite coffee shop.
  • Gift card to their favourite clothing store.
  • A pre-paid Visa/MasterCard to purchase their own gift of choice.
  • Dinner and movie tickets.
  • For those who ski or snowboard, a day pass/tickets for the local hill.

Elderly relatives or parents

  • Lambskin slippers.
  • Blanket wrap or house jacket.
  • Silver photo frame with a special photo of a special memory, perhaps, or an updated photo of your family.

Family and close friends who live far away or overseas

  • Calendar or picture book of the area where you live.
  • A photo montage of your family during the year. Photos can now be easily added to calendars, DVDs, mugs, and other items.
  • Souvenir ornament that highlights a meaningful special event or yearly marker.
  • A food item or treat that is only available in the area where you live.

For the host/hostess

  • Seasonal bouquet or table centerpiece.
  • A fine wine or after-dinner liqueur.
  • Specialty chocolates or cookies.

Other alternatives

  • Donations to your favourite charity instead of giving gifts to others (it’s good etiquette to let people know you are doing this; mention it in a Christmas card or make a special card).
  • Giving the valuable gift of your time speaks volumes.

We hope this gives you ideas. If you would like to know more about Christmas traditions, ask James Cooper at www.whychristmas.com. He is a hive of information!

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