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Need Some Gift Ideas? Consider These Categories of Items to Help Spark Ideas

Need Some Gift Ideas? Consider These Categories of Items to Help Spark Ideas

'Tis the season to be jolly, and it's also the season of thinking about gift-giving.

In my family, gift-giving will be very different this year, because we won't be together the way we usually are.

We talked about how we'd handle gift-giving under these unexpected circumstances, because we didn't want anyone to have hurt feelings because of differences in expectations.

As a result, I'm not buying gifts for some family members—and I find that with other family members, I'm all the more focused on gift-giving, because I want to show my love in this way since I won't be there in person.

As I'm trying to come up with great gift ideas, here are some categories I find myself pondering for possibilities:

Sampler sets. Samplers are available for just about everything, and samplers are so fun. You don't have the pressure of picking one item, and your recipient gets the fun of trying different variations. I've seen samplers for honey, tea, perfume, cocktail bitters.

Whimsical items. These days, more than ever, we could use a little fun and silliness in our lives! Temporary tattoos, flying wish paper, mBerry Miracle Fruit (makes sour things taste sweet, so fun to try!), kazoo.

Things that delight and comfort the body and the five senses. Just as we can use a little whimsy, we also need some comfort. A soft throw, potted herbs, noise-cancelling headphones.

Items that help enthusiasts get more enjoyment out of what they already like to do. Great tools are such a delight. That might mean a better e-reader for someone who loves to read, smart speaker or better earbuds for a music-lover, a set of great knives for a cook.

Fun examples of practical things. A collapsible umbrella with a great pattern, a stylish alarm clock, a creamer in the shape of a cow, felt-tip pens in interesting colors.

Items that make life more convenient. A clip-on reading light, a platform to create a standing desk, Command Hooks—I only recently discovered Command Hooks! They are amazing.

Personalized things. Personalizing a gift makes it seem much more thoughtful, I think. These days, it's easy to order items like mugs, tote bags, scratch pads, stationery, and water bottles with a photo or saying you choose (this is one of my sister Elizabeth's favorite gifts to give). Or you can order items with someone's name or monogram.

Items made from children's artwork. I have a laminator, and I used to laminate my daughters' art to be "place mats" for the grandparents. There are also many sites that will help you turn your child's artwork into gifts.

Items that cost nothing and take up no space! Help someone sign up for a library card or give  a "coupon" for clutter-clearing or errand-running. Or give someone "The Gift of a Podcast"!

I can't resist mentioning that my online courses also make great gifts. Give someone the structure and accountability they need to clear clutter, invest in happiness, or grow in self-understanding.

What are some other helpful categories to consider, as we try to find thoughtful gifts for the people in our lives? I need suggestions!

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