You can’t sleep!
Your mind is going a mile a minute!
You’re freaking out!
No, you don’t have a job interview tomorrow or a life-defining college exam, or even a round of medical tests. No, it’s Christmas and you haven’t done your shopping. Well, even if there’s only a week to go, we thought we would offer some simple and easy to acquire gifts for everyone that is not just a gift card. You can thank us once the turkey stupor has worn off.
For Your Dad: Beer!
Look, it may sound rather simple, but your average dad isn’t the kind of guy who’s out at a Brooklyn bar sampling artisanal craft beers, you know? So why not give him the opportunity to sample some with a variety box of different beers from a fancy booze store – and no, I don’t mean Trader Joe’s – that he can drink over the coming months? Buy a Thai variety that he can have next time he orders take-out Pad Thai. Give him varieties from South Africa, Brazil, and Japan that will surprise him. Find a local brewer whose pride product isn’t likely to appear on the supermarket shelf where he normally might buy a six-pack to watch the football with. It shows a bit of extra thought and you know he’ll get use out of it.
For Your Mom: Wine of the Month
Dad gets beer, mom gets wine. It’s symmetry! Get your mother a membership to one of the many clubs – including the original Wine of the Month Club – that send members out a bottle (or two, or three depending on what level of membership you choose) per month of selected wine. Your mom can sample classics, limited editions, and local or international varieties, and once a month will be reminded of your generosity. And hey, if you plan your visits home accordingly you may just get to have a taste, too.
For the Niece or Nephew: Something Educational
Feel good about yourself knowing you have used the necessity of gift-giving at Christmas to help your young niece or nephew learn something. It’s easy to get them a toy or a game, but those lose their luster after a while. So why not get them a globe which they can use to learn about geography. What about a leather-bound diary to help develop their writing and spelling skills as well as nurturing any potential creative writing genes within them? You can never go wrong with books, but one like Jo Witek’s In My Heart: A Book of Feelings (for the wee ones) or even a cheeky Blu-ray of Inside Out (for the slightly older ones) will teach them about feelings and what it means to be happy, sad, angry, alone, scared, and so on. Buy them a telescope and help foster a fascination with the stars. Or if you want to challenge them, give them the gift of a foreign language guide. Starting young has been proven to help in their advancement, and knowing multiple languages will only become more essential in this world. They may not want it straight away, but it can sit on the shelf until they’re ready.
For The Engaged: A Day Spa Sojourn
It’s easy to find a gift for your sister or daughter if they happen to engaged to be wed in the coming year. They will love a day spa gift certificate that they can use in the lead up to the wedding to get refreshed and glowing. They will need the relaxation of a massage and the tranquility of a mud-path, and they’ll relish a pampering in the lead up to the most hectic day of their life.
For the Movie-Lover: MoviePass or a Festival Subscription
If you have a friend and or family member who just loves the movies then look no further than MoviePass. It is a card-and-app service that allows people to see a movie a day ostensibly for free at pretty much any major theater chain across the country. Obviously this works better if you live in a major city like New York (where many independent theaters are also included in the deal), Los Angeles, or Chicago. Just going to see two movies a week gets you value for money and if you’re not paying for them, why not got see two movies a week?
Another option is a film festival membership. If your local festival is a big one, then why not let your cinephile family actually experience it in all of its glory with a pass that allows them into as many movies as they can handle? Most festivals offer a pass of this sort that also grants special offers throughout the year like advance previews and discounts.
For the Fashion-Lover: Go Vintage
One of the great things about vintage clothes is that not only are they more personal a top or a pair of sunglasses at H&M, but that even if you choose wrong they know you put more thought into it than might have been expected. Visit a vintage store and don’t be afraid to ask for help from the shop assistants! Know the size of the person you’re looking for – easy to do if you’re sneaky – and the sort of clothes they like. The beauty about these stores is you never know what you may find that will add a kick to somebody’s wardrobe. Maybe you’ll find a classy dress from the ‘50s, a sexy leather jacket from the ‘60s, a hippie mini from the ‘70s, or an ironically-retro tee from the ‘80s.
For the Traveler:
It’s nice having a family member with the travel bug because it means it is always easy to find something. If they are in their 20s and just starting to get a desire for world travel, this scratch map from Uncommon Goods makes for an ideal piece of changing wallpaper as they scratch off parts of the world they have been to and inspire future journeys. If you have a bit of extra money to splurge, then Paul E. Cohen and Henry G. Tallaferro’s American Cities Ultimate: Historic Maps and Views is a stunning, dense exploration of some of America’s greatest metropolises. Featuring rare and even previously unpublished maps, as well as essays, it’s not quite a steal at $700, but if you’re going to go fancy, there’s no better way.