10 gift ideas that won’t break your budget

Published 12:45 pm Sunday, November 28, 2021

By  Charlestien Harris

Get ready, get set, and go!  Ready or not, the holiday shopping season has started.  Everybody is racing to buy, point, click or ship a gift to a friend or family member.  As you begin to focus more towards the upcoming holiday season, you might want to think about committing to giving with more intentionality, gifts that truly do celebrate the person receiving the gifts.  Remembering that age old adage that it is the thought that counts, putting some extra thought into your gift-giving can give you a win every time!  These are just a few ideas to get you started.  They are listed in no particular order so you can add to the list as you go about the holiday season trying to fill the gift list you have in your hand.

Gift idea #1- Time.  Yes, that’s right- the gift of time.  It doesn’t matter what you do during the time, as long as your phone is silenced and put away, being present with those you love is the best present of all.  Time is precious and giving it as your gift to someone lets them know you really care and it can help you reconnect, do something meaningful or mend a broken relationship.

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Gift idea #2- Acts of kindness coupons. Do you know something that needs to be done? Mowing the lawn, cleaning the house or just a room or two, cooking a meal for them- even running errands is a huge blessing in the lives of others.  Not putting a time limit or “just for the holiday” limit on the coupon might make it an added bonus and redemption more convenient for the receiver.  The holidays are very busy already so being able to redeem a coupon later can be a real gift.

Gift idea #3- Babysitting. If you have family with little ones on your gift list- this is one of the best gifts you can give. You can offer to go to their home, so you can put the kids to bed in their own beds and the parents can come home to a quiet house.  A perfect ending to a child-free evening of relaxation and adult time.

Gift idea #4- Baked goods.   Who doesn’t love baked goods or a home cooked meal?  If you love to bake or cook period- everyone else loves to eat! A holiday wrapped box of homemade cookies, cupcakes, or quick bread is always pleasant to receive. An evening of no cooking is always nice too.  Try cooking a meal for a very busy person or a sick neighbor, family or friend and watch how they smile.

Gift idea #5- A simple care package.  You know your friend or family member best!  So, try to include items that you know will pamper them- their favorite beverage and snack, a movie to watch, or a book to read. Keeping it simple will make the experience more enjoyable and also make the gift memorable for holiday seasons to come.  Self-care is critical and it also helps to bring awareness to why living a healthy lifestyle is so very important.

Gift idea #6- Create music playlist.  Music is a great gift idea.  Try to pick a theme or something that might motivate, encourage, or create a prayerful and peaceful atmosphere. Being able to play a CD collection of your favorite music or inspirational speaker in the car stereo on the way home from work can do wonders for a person that is constantly bombarded by stressful situations.

Gift idea #7- Give a good book. Books are wonderful gifts for the avid reader.   There are some wonderful children’s books, self-help books, inspirational and fiction topics available, so you can pick something based on the person you need to gift to. To a person that loves to read, a book will be very meaningful to them.  You can gather a list of authors throughout the year to be prepared.

Gift idea #8- Fruit basket.  You have been after that family member or friend to eat healthier.  Why not make it easier for them.  Fruit baskets can be quick snacks and help alleviate some stress of the typical habit of not eating healthy during the holidays.  You can purchase them already assembled or create a personalized one by the including the fruit preferences of the person receiving the basket.

Gift idea #9- Plan an extra special experience together.  Whether you purchase a ticket to a sports game or comedy night, set an appointment for a massage or spa day, make it a priority and anticipate enjoying it together.  Having an experience to look forward to is one of the joys of life and can make the holiday season more enjoyable and memorable as well.

Gift idea #10-Create a picture story book or video. Take some time to tell a simple picture filled story about how you met and what your relationship has meant to you over time.   Family photo albums hold special memories and can be a great resource to use when creating a lasting impression on the gift receiver.  For those of you that are tech savvy, creating a short video can also be an excellent gift that can last a lifetime. These suggestions are particularly special for those people in our lives that tend to have everything they need- like our parents and grandparents! Gather friends and family together and put together a beautiful video or story book gift full of appreciation, encouragement, and admiration.

Hope these holiday gift ideas help you to ease the squeeze on that holiday budget.  I also hope it offers a bit of inspiration to your quest to fulfilling that all so important shopping list for the holidays.  For more information on this and other topics of interest please contact me at Charlestien.harris@southernpartners.org or 662-624-5776.  Until next week—Stay financially fit!