Sunday, December 23, 2018

Unique and Meaningful Gifts for Everyone

Happy Holidays, all!

Whether still in need of a few last minute gifts, or even deciding on grabbing a little something for yourself, here is a list of unique, as well as meaningful gifts that the people in your life will love, find memorable, and actually use.

First off: what actually makes a truly phenomenal gift?  Many, many people mistake this.  Grabbing either something pricey to impress or something somewhat generic or even something that actually reflects their own personal tastes more than to whom they are actually giving it.  A fabulous gift is one that is deeply personal.  To be a great gift giver, you must know your recipient well.  The gift should reflect, completely, your recipient's interests, passions, who they are as a person, ect.  So yes, this does take some effort and careful thought.  However, it has nothing to do with the price tag.  Instead, its all about the person to whom you are giving.

With that said and kept in mind, read on for some great ideas below.

Surprise your close friend, or romantic love, or even family member with whom you are tight, with a weekend trip somewhere close by.  Though this can be an expensive gift, it doesn't have to be.  It just requires some careful planning.  Google "charming cities in___" (you fill in the blank with your state).

Consider what this person loves, their passions, the types of places they enjoy going, their personal interests.  That will be your guide for the weekend, assisting in your choosing what types of places you might take them to eat, which activities you will choose, etc.  If your recipient loves charming, romantic, quaint cafes, you may not choose all swanky 5-star restaurants for the weekend.  If your recipient loves the outdoors, you would probably want to pick some fun outside activities for the time you go away, and maybe even plan it for sometime when the weather is warmer.  You get the idea.

This can be an incredibly memorable, emotionally moving gift to receive.  As well as, can be a majorly awesome memory the two of you will then create and experience together.

Four-Handed Illusionists.  A way cool, loaded with laughter, bewitching, and entertaining show in Boston.  And yes, it is a magic show.  Several of the tricks left me spellbound and awed.  Really, really neat.  And the magicians themselves are hilarious.  The audience is very much included.  Its an elegant and engaging evening.  And some fancy appetizers and cocktails are served beforehand.  Tickets are about $75 each, and very much worth the experience.

Paleonola.  I was skeptical upon sampling this stuff, imagining it might be rather plain and blah.  Not even close.  Absolutely delicious with Greek yogurt.  My new favorite snack.  It will make for a fabulous breakfast or anytime snack.  Officially obsessed over here (Maple Pancake is the flavor with which I am smitten).  And the best part?  It is super healthy :-D.  This is a great gift for your healthconsciouss loved ones.

Take your loved one either: restaurant hopping, or on a dessert tour of the city in which you live!  How to organize and do this?  And further, what actually is this?

If choosing restaurant hopping, pick four spots that are relatively close together or easily accessible to one another by car or public transport.  You will go to one place for a pre-dinner drink (so pick a spot that is atmospheric and well known for their drinks).  Then for an appetizer, you will go to a different locale.  For your entree/main course, yes, another separate place.  And then finally, dessert at a fourth different location.  This is lots of fun!  Offering one the chance to sample several different places and to fine tune where you choose to that spots particular specialty.

Same idea for a dessert tour.  Pick 3-5 places that are semi-close to each other (within walking distance, or easily accessible to one another by public transport or driving).  And take your friend/lover/family member/loved one on a dessert adventure.

The point, of course, is to choose and tailor the places you pick to generally fit your recipients most favorite types of desserts.  And of course, to consider the types of foods your recipient likes, as well as any dietary restrictions, or how they generally like to eat, in mind.

Tickets to some kind of live show that your recipient would love.  Whether it be a sporting event, a musical or play at the theatre, an orchestral performance, stand-up comedy, the list goes on.  This is a great experience type of gift.  Something that the person is likely to remember for many years to come, as well as a memory you two will make together in the process.

Get them a gift subscription box for three months, of course, tailoring the choice of the box to a theme that of course, fits the person to whom you are gifting and would be something they are likely to love.

The choices out there are endless.  From boxes that send someone different types of tea, to a book of the month club box, to boxes overflowing with different types of candy, to a gentleman's fancy sock box, boxes that offer healthy eating snacks.  The options go on and on.

Check out for a boatload of ideas and choices.

Just in time for the new year (resolutions to eat healthier, anyone?), a cookbook chock full of great-for-your body recipes which are easy to make, as well as lovely to look at.  All of the recipes within falling under one, if not more, of the following tiers: gluten/grain free, lactose-free, sugar-free, or raw.

A hint of what you will find within: pancakes, oatmeal, quiches, donuts, heart-healthy quinoa bowls, homey and decadent pasta dishes, pizza, salads, lasagna, and desserts galore.  This is a cookbook worth having in your arsenal.

Snag a print or e-book copy here.

A book.  Both, something your recipient would be interested in, as well as something you believe to be a worthwhile and awesome readBooks change lives.  They have the power to inspire us, alter our thinking entirely, offer us new ideas for being and living.  They can inform and entertain.  Even in some cases, a book can save us.  Reminding each of us that we aren't alone.  That others have experienced similar things that we have.

Books are always a great gift.  And for those who claim they "don't like to read"?  They just aren't doing it right ;-).  They haven't found the right books yet.  There are books out there for everyone.  It's just a matter of finding those that capture your interest, grip and inspire you.

(See below for some of the books I have finished as of late and found to be excellent).

For this last one, I am going to go old school and traditional.  Write someone a letter.  A handwritten letter, detailing what they mean to you.  How this person adds to your life.  Maybe recollecting some cherished memories the two of you share.  How special they are to you.  How your life is better with them in it.  You get the idea.

Too often, we leave important things left unsaid.  To both friends, family members we are close with, and romantic partners.

Say it.  Choose to tell them :-).  You may not know it from their outward reaction, but its likely you will make their month with your letter, and that your words will be cherished and treasured by them, recalled frequently, for a long, long time.  Possibly for the duration of their life.

Need more inspiration and consideration for why letters are awesome and should be written and given far more frequently?

Here is an excellent article, worthy of taking a read through: "The Value of a Handwritten Letter."

As well as a blog article on the life-changing power of vulnerability.

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