The BIG List of Gift Ideas


During Christmas, we’re like little kids with our faces pressed up against a candy shop window. It’s time to buy gifts. But what to get? There’s so much available.

My advice is to choose a gift that suits the recipient first. Don’t fall for a trendy doodad that will end up at the next garage sale. Believe me, I’ve seen them all.

I’d rather spend $10 on a good gift that’ll be appreciated than $50 on the latest fad that’s soon forgotten and discarded.

I think advertisers are hoping you’ll panic enough to buy anything that falls within your budget, even if it’s a tacky bit of junk.

So let’s back up a bit and think about who’s on our gift list and what would make them happy, or at least make their lives easier.

I’ve compiled a list of gifts that are high on quality for a wide range of tastes and ages. It might not be exactly what you’re looking for, but it could be a jumping off point for ideas. I’m counting on it!

Click on each picture for more details and prices.
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Kids: For me, they’re the hardest to shop for because they grow so fast. If you want something to last for more than a few weeks, I’d concentrate on keepsakes, books, and electronics.


Men: I find most men like unique and/or fun stuff so I’d start with these.



Women: Most women I know love to cater to their passions since they seldom have time for them. Whether it’s cooking, gardening, fashion, or traveling, listen to what they like to talk about most, and go from there.



Gardeners: This is my wheelhouse. LOL! While most serious gardeners already have good tools, you can’t go wrong with consumables like seeds, bulbs, and yes, even dirt. Pay attention to their workspace though. If their kneeling mat looks shabby or their tools look worn, get them one excellent tool and you’ll be remembered for life.



Cooks: Not my wheelhouse, but I have a few small appliances and tools I won’t live without. If your gift recipient is lacking in this arena, buy them good quality tools to get the job done.



Foodies: I put Greg in this category. He loves to try new foods. But even I was pleasantly surprised when our money guy sent us a box of Harry and David fruit and nuts. It was the most delicious goodie selection I’ve ever tasted. We relished every piece. Harry and David is not cheap, but it is excellent quality.



Techies: We live in a techie world. I’m a troglodyte by nature, but even I know I can’t live without technology. The trouble with tech though is that it seems to become obsolete so quickly. From bitter experience I’ve learned not to skimp with brands. They’re world famous because they work. The knock-offs won’t do.



Seniors: We are seniors, and we know even more senior people than us, so I’ve become adept and picking good gifts for older people.



Pets: Another list where I have some authority! While Jammy the cat is purrfectly content with his cat tree, the dogs wear out their toys very quickly. It’s time for the big guns with my super chewers. One word of caution: Never buy toys or food made in China. Pets have died from contaminants.



Experience Gifts: Experience gifts are all the rage. While they can get expensive, they’re infinitely more recipient friendly since they don’t take up any room and can be used at their leisure.

Some ideas are:

Memberships: Think about a yearly membership to the zoo, museum, arboretum, or National Park.

Sports and Music: They might like a ticket to a game or concert.

Food: How about a wine, cheese, or brewery tour? Or a cooking class?

Travel: Some cities offer old fashioned train rides. One year, I got Greg a one day class in helicopter flying.

Hobbies: Nearly every good sized city offers drawing, painting, pottery, or woodworking classes. Just Google for what’s available in your area.

In the end, give the things friends and family will remember and want to keep. It’s not about the money you spent, but the thought you put into it.

I hope this list gave you some ideas for Christmas, or maybe a treat for yourself too.

Are you hoping for anything special this Christmas?  Did anything here strike your fancy as a potential gift?


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  1. I so agree on thinking about the recipient first, considering what they want and/or need. Sometimes those items can be more expensive – and worth it! – but not always. Some of the best gifts I’ve given – and received! – were more thoughtful than expensive, and those and their memories are the ones I treasure the most. 🙂

  2. Angela Brown

    You’ve got a great selection of gift ideas. Experience gifts are pretty cool. They provide the recipient with a chance to try something they may have an interest in – like painting with Painting with a Twist – but not quite sure they’re ready to spend the moola themselves. This is also great as a “couples” gift.

    I’ve tried Harry and David. It can be pricey, but for the joy it provided the recipients, it was well worth it.

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