Budget-Friendly Holiday Gifts (many of which do NOT require shopping)

The time to FINALLY play holiday music during a socially acceptable period will arrive in approximately less than two weeks! Am I the only one that would DEFINITELY play “All I Want for Christmas is You” and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” in October? Well, I would gladly stand by that podium alone because I have NO shame in this whatsoever.

Most of us adore the holidays, especially because of the hobbies: baking, making hot chocolate, wearing sweaters, watching our favorite cliche holiday movies, listening to festive music, spending more time with the family, and traveling. The not-so-beloved hobby during this time of the year would be the shopping. While many of us do love a leisurely shopping trip, a great deal of individuals find that holiday shopping is anything BUT leisurely. Sales left and right, people running all around the mall, inventory running out at inconvenient times, and too many decisions to make. I want to see myself out the door, baby. (No more) Buy buy buy. Lastly, the issue with holiday shopping is how much it can easily strip people from the true meaning of the holidays: a time to reflect on this year (all the good, the bad, and the ugly), cherish your loved ones, and prepare for the next year.

Below are some simple but very treasurable gift ideas that you can provide for your loved ones this year. Let’s just say 2020 was a wild ride for all of us. 2021 is predicted to be extremely uncertain in regards to what we would face economically, politically, environmentally, socially, globally, and so forth. Quarantining in our homes and having to restrict our times outdoors in crowded public areas, so you can just walk right in and out of a store without too much thought for these gifts OR you do not have to shop at all!

  • Quality time. Self-isolation strips us of social interaction quite a bit, so the best that we can do is visit our loved ones with some masks and sanitation wipes (AND other safe social etiquette procedures!) to just enjoy a few hours or a day in their company! Include a meaningful conversation and just tell them how much you love them.
  • A tasty meal. Whether it be takeout or anything home-cooked, yummy food is the key to anyone’s heart (or stomach). It’s even more meaningful if you can cook and/or consume the meal together and appreciate each other’s presence.
  • Donation to their favorite charity. A tremendous amount of turmoil and unrest has occurred this year. We should donate to these charities regardless, but some people do desire that their friends spend money that could have been used for a new pair of shoes to instead be granted to people in need and other causes.
  • A custom playlist. We all love a good song, hence music is one of the best forms of expression for love and authentic feelings. I personally like to select songs that have straightforward messages but compelling lyrics and a voice with soul and purpose.
  • A trip to special and sacred places. There is nothing I love more than traveling around a city and taking in new environments, usually anywhere that has a lot to offer such as a new garden, a beach, a shopping center, or a small town. Just make sure you stay safe in any of these spaces!
  • Signs that you have thought of them. Even the smallest of gestures can impact a relationship significantly. Sending links to memes, poems, a cool product, or recommendations of what they’d like is a great way to sprinkle in some love before the official holiday dates!
  • Anything to send them good vibes. These can vary from crystals, incense, sage, tarot cards, or even a subscription to a meditation service. Maybe I’m in the minority here, but nothing is more thoughtful than something that just signifies: “Hey, I want you to feel better and you deserve to feel happy”!
  • A heartfelt card and/or letter. Writing down your appreciation and your memories with someone is probably one of the most old-fashioned but treasurable ways of making them smile. A card with writing that holds substance and meaning is a gift that almost anyone would love. Pair it with something simply but beautiful such as a necklace, a small box of chocolate, or pack of soy candles for an even prettier package!
  • Plants. Lately, more have taken on the hobby of caring for indoor and outdoor plants because we all need some more nature in our lives. It’s easy to take nature for granted if we have 24/7 access to it, but hey, nourishing plants is a great way to practice responsibility, accountability, and patience. Make sure these plants are potted nicely and that they can fit in their particular living space!
  • A portfolio. Art truly has a special way of resonating with other people and exemplifying how you feel about them and your relationship. You can give them their favorite Whether you love poetry, storytelling, painting, sketching, or anything more visually captivating, just create any kind of portfolio that is catered more specifically towards the recipient. I always love drawing portraits of my colleagues who will be graduating before me and co-workers who move on to different jobs because it’s one of my favorite ways of showcasing how important they have been in my life. Add a special message at the end and it’ll be set!
  • Lastly, anything to aid them in difficult times. With numerous losses and devastating tragedies having occurred this year, some, if not many, need an extra individual in their support group. Again, quality time really helps along with other useful items, plus, PPE, food, and other items to depict how much you have thought of them would do the same. If a loved one is in need of employment, you can always reach out to a company you work for or know of for mutuals to network or some financial assistance, but ONLY if they ask for any of them.

Thank you all for your patience! I’ve been job searching and working the entire time I’ve been inactive (busy busy busy), but please have a restful and safe weekend and Thanksgiving holiday if you celebrate it!

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