Not to add to your holiday stress or anything, but FYI, shopping may be a bit of a pain this year.Yay. Retailers may offer comparable substitutions, but in the event that doesn’t work for you, your order is delayed or sold out, here are some suggestions to save Santa’s sanity!
Before we get to the list, you always have the option of transitioning to cash or checks in lieu of shopping. I’ve heard some parents are doing so this year. If that doesn’t flip your tree skirt, check out my ten ideas below. It might help you brainstorm in other directions. You will note that these ideas involve giving an experience, rather than an item. Sadly, some recipients will find little delight in either cash or an experience—children, for example—because they love unwrapping presents. Lots and lots of presents…
Fortunately, there are experiences available at all price levels, so there’s something for everyone!
Solution #1: Give a vacation! Depending on your spending limit, you get to determine duration, transportation, room, and/or board. This can get pretty rich or not. You choose. (Hey, that Viking Cruise brochure was in the mailbox again. (Should I start packing yet, Jeff?)
Solution #2: Give a seafood, steak, whiskey or wine of the month club membership for 6-12 months. (I’ll drink to that!)
Solution #3: Give ticket(s) to a single show or the entire season of Broadway Shows, local theater, symphony, chorus, or movie passes. Or take the sport route, either as a spectator (Cards vs/ Cubs tickets) or as a participant (Think: gym or yoga membership. Namaste.)
Solution #4: Give a day trip. Meals, gas, or other transportation included. (Would they want to go to the Van Gogh exhibit or a museum? Yes please!)
Solution: #5: Who wouldn’t enjoy a cooking, painting, dancing, or wine-tasting class? No? Okay, keep reading…
Solution #6: Give the luxury of housecleaning once a quarter or month. A gift for a professional organizer is a great idea too. (Dear Family, my door’s always open to this!)
Solution #7: Think beauty with a gift certificate for hair, facial, spa day, massage, or mani-pedi. Bundle it or give a single service. Calgon… take me away NOW!
Solution #8: Give a gift certificate to a restaurant or cool bar. Bring it on! Or in Quincy, IL for example, you can give “Chamber of Commerce Bucks.” So many options…so little time!
Solution#9: How about a paid day(s) off for your caregivers of the elderly, disabled, or child care? Any paid time off will be appreciated. I promise.
Solution #10: Can I tell you how jealous I was of my co-worker, Amanda last Christmas? Her hubby gave her a car wash gift card for once a month! It’s a great de-stressor as well. (Wait! Make mine weekly!)
Happy Stress-free Shopping!
P.S. Do you have other ideas? We might publish a follow-up list!