Gift ideas (for various occassions)


#1

Hello,

I need ideas for an inexpensive, easy, but love-filled gift for family members and friends on occasions such as birthdays and retirements.

Sometimes I feel that a signed card isn't enough. Yet, I am looking for a type of gift that is not costly of money or a lot of time, because I am short on both of those resources at the moment (as are many people!). I still need to be a careful steward of what I have.

Do we really need to spend money or much time in order to sincerely honor a relative or friend? What are some other ideas?

I would like suggestions for gifts for recipients. The main occasions are birthdays and retirements. The people I have in mind are far away, and others nearby, Catholic, and some non-Catholic or non-religious.

(For example, I wanted to make a themed scrapbook but it is becoming costly and also distracting from my daily duties. Even though I felt I came up with a very good and personable idea, certain that the recipient would love this and benefit from it, it just doesn't seem right since its costing me money at a time when I need to be saving, and taking up an excessive amount of time away from other important things.)


#2

Try flipbooks from Walmart photo. The 5x7 paperback ones are under $5 and look pretty cute and professional when finished. They don't have any of the mess of a scrapbook but come with all the reward...and they're reprintable. They can also be made into the $15-20 hardcover version (I think like 9x13) which look AMAZING.

For nearby gifts try easy potted plants or bamboo. Bamboo is GREAT for the office because it requires NO special care, just has to be watered and dosn't need any sunlight. Bamboo can be baught in groups of stalks for under $5 (you'll get these skinny little fat pencil sized stalks with tiny little buds coming out of the sides) at flourists then you can divide out the stalks(2-3 work best in the long run, but even 1 is ok once it gets bigger), get cute jars/candleholders from salvation army, and let them grow. They aways look great and the more the grow the cooler they look. They require almost no care so long as you keep them in water. Super cheap. You can also go wild with aquatic rocks and their colors which bamboo will tolerate...although you actually don't need aything but water.

For birthdays...even for adults a simple "luxary" candybar can go a long way...like Black & Green Organic chocolate (around $5 for a "hershy" size bar). It's GREAT. Care packages...with cerial bars, powdered drinks, dried fruit can also be somewhat cheap but VERY well appreciated.

If you're sending a car a pop-out card is lots of fun, as well as record yourself musical cards. Don't just get the cheapest card at Walmart...go to the Paper Store and other like places...they have some spectacular cards that are presants in themselves.

For kids (or the young at heart) you can go to AC Moore or Michel's and pick up quite a few "flat" projects made from thin wood or cardbord that could easily fit into a 9x12 envelope. (the wood selection is dinasours, airplanes, etc while the cardboard is "puzzle" type and makes castles) Klutz press offeres a GREAT line of fun activity books for kids and even some that adults would like...everything from face painting to cat's cradle.

Packing a mug with hot chocolate/instant cappichino is great.

If you know that the retired (or child) is looking for things to do a 3-D puzzle is a good small gift.

At christmas time handmaid ornaments are great. There are SO many out there...however I'd recommend getting a book and NOT googling...there are just too many idiots who think they can do oragami on the internet and most times they cannot.


#3

Along the lines of what purple said above with the mug packed with instant drinks, you could also make your own drink mix and put it in baggies in a mug or just put it in some nice mason jars with a cute lable and some ribbon.

Two Christmases ago I did this.....I made a chai latte mix in a big batch (powdered milk, powdered coconut milk, sugar, instant black tea, and spices) and jarred them and made some handwritten labels for the jars. I face them to a couple dozen people and they went over very well and were very inexpensive.


#4

[quote="purplesunshine, post:2, topic:203196"]
Try flipbooks from Walmart photo. The 5x7 paperback ones are under $5 and look pretty cute and professional when finished. They don't have any of the mess of a scrapbook but come with all the reward...and they're reprintable. They can also be made into the $15-20 hardcover version (I think like 9x13) which look AMAZING.

For nearby gifts try easy potted plants or bamboo. Bamboo is GREAT for the office because it requires NO special care, just has to be watered and dosn't need any sunlight.

For birthdays...even for adults a simple "luxary" candybar can go a long way...like Black & Green Organic chocolate (around $5 for a "hershy" size bar). It's GREAT.

If you're sending a car a pop-out card is lots of fun, as well as record yourself musical cards.

For kids (or the young at heart) you can go to AC Moore or Michel's and pick up quite a few "flat" projects made from thin wood or cardbord that could easily fit into a 9x12 envelope. (the wood selection is dinasours, airplanes, etc while the cardboard is "puzzle" type and makes castles) Klutz press offeres a GREAT line of fun activity books for kids and even some that adults would like...everything from face painting to cat's cradle.

Packing a mug with hot chocolate/instant cappichino is great.

If you know that the retired (or child) is looking for things to do a 3-D puzzle is a good small gift.

At christmas time handmaid ornaments are great. There are SO many out there...however I'd recommend getting a book and NOT googling...there are just too many idiots who think they can do oragami on the internet and most times they cannot.

[/quote]

yes to all of this! And don't forget about stores like the dollar tree! They have great kids crafts, but also pretty candles, picture frames, coffee mugs and our local store even has some Catholic artwork that is very pretty.

Gifts don't have to cost a lot or take a lot of time. For my 30th birthday my friend thought of 30 things about me, my love of family, my hobbies etc. and printed them out on her computer. It told a story about me and each sentance held a special thought about me that was printed in a different color. Something like- I use my Creativity
with my cross-stitch to make beautiful gifts for my family and friends.
I know this gift didn't cost much, but she had to take the time to think about me and what I love about my life. Some of the things were so very touching because they were things I do out of love and never thought about getting recognized for them, but she saw it. It was one of the best gifts I have ever been given.

Another thing I have done is the "cookie of the month club"! My DH's grandpa loves sweets, so for his birthday I printed out a certificate for the cookie of the month club and every month, for one year, I baked him cookies!

I make my FIL a cheesecake every year for his birthday. It's his favorite treat!


#5

[quote="shannyk, post:3, topic:203196"]
Along the lines of what purple said above with the mug packed with instant drinks, you could also make your own drink mix and put it in baggies in a mug or just put it in some nice mason jars with a cute lable and some ribbon.

Two Christmases ago I did this.....I made a chai latte mix in a big batch (powdered milk, powdered coconut milk, sugar, instant black tea, and spices) and jarred them and made some handwritten labels for the jars. I face them to a couple dozen people and they went over very well and were very inexpensive.

[/quote]

I've done this with cookie mixes too!


#6

Thanks for all the great ideas on here!!!

The list of 30 characterisitics that was made for someone on their 30th birthday is very close to the kind of "gifts" I am looking for. Cheap, doesn't take too long (hours and hours), and is very very personable and loving. I also forgot about those fun dollar stores!

I appreciate your generosity and helping hand.

More ideas and responses are still welcome, too!

*May the Lord bless us, protect us from all evil, and bring us to everlasting life! * :signofcross:


#7

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