by Pat Nowak
Holiday gift giving is an art… fulfilling the wishes of a friend or family can be daunting.
Where can you find suggestions? Often when you shop local the store has a myriad of ideas with price points that can offer you a stocking stuffer or a more substantial gift. If the gift recipient is also a customer, the clerk may know their taste, offer advice and provide free gift-wrap, unlike big box stores.
Consider the giftee’s habits. Someone who is a gourmet cook would probably love the newest in gadgets – think a Crock Pot Smart Slow Cooker with WeMO – you can connect with an app on your phone or how about a subscription to a wine club, or hire a chef for the day.
Children all want the newest gadgets from the IPhone 6S, or consider the Kindle Paperwhite to encourage reading. The Kano Computer Kit helps children learn the basics of computer science and the Toys-to-Life Game which expands as the child ages.
Gift certificates are always well received. When choosing, think of how the recipient will use them. If your sister is a gourmet cook, a restaurant certificate might be welcome.
The lifestyle of the person receiving the gift provides clues for gift selection. Where do they usually shop? What lines of clothing do they favor? Thrill them with a certificate from their favorite store. Today, gift certificates have to be valid for five years, so the issue of them losing their value is no longer a problem.
Jewelry is high on the list of gifts, but be sure you know the person’s taste before purchasing an expensive piece that cannot be returned. Clothing also falls into that category – sizes are always dicey and the worst gift to deliver is one that is too large. Buy a beautiful scarf instead.
Personal concierge services are a wonderful gift. A personal organizer, clothing specialist or handyman services are all great ideas and make life easier for the recipient. But be sure the gift is needed and not a hint, like buying a certificate for a gym for someone who is struggling with a weight problem. The holidays are not a time for others to be reminded of their shortcomings.
One last tip: the holidays are not a good time to bring a pet into the home for the children. This time of year is stressful enough without watching over a new pet. Perhaps give a gift certificate to a pet shelter that can be used at a later time when it is more appropriate.
Aah the joys of the season – giving is better than receiving.