Holiday Gift Ideas for Those Who Have it All

Shopping; for yourself, its pretty easy. When you have to pick out a gift for someone else…not so much. Its a nightmare at the best of times, and, during the holiday season, so much worse. There is only one thing worse than shopping itself during the holidays and that is shopping for people who have everything. Not literally. Unless they’re a celebrity who have the cash flowing faster than water from your faucet, thats a stretch. But, they certainly have everything they want. Good luck getting any ideas from them as to what to buy them for the holidays.

Fortunately, you’re not alone. All you need is a few fresh ideas to keep your head above water. Avoid the hair-pulling, tears of frustration and last-minute gifts that have you cringing with guilt. These ideas will help you with those pesky people who refuse to throw you a bone.

Bring Back Something of Value

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This works best for old friends and family members, even long-term partners. Its simple, too. Find something with sentimental value- make sure it holds significant value to the receiver. The older, the better. And, if you can manage, try to pick out something that ties the two of you or other members of your family or friend circle together. Memories are something more meaningful than any amount of money can buy. Of course, there are the ungrateful few who will look at you gift and think, “how cheap…” so avoid those people. Target the ones you know will appreciate the value of your sentiment and ignore the lack of financial worth.

 

Gift Cards

These are pretty self-explanatory. They’re the got-to gift idea for extended family members or last-minute emergencies. Some people think it shows a lack of thoughtlessness. On the contrary, I couldn’t imagine someone being happier than when they realize they get to shopping for themselves instead of putting on a fake smile and whipping out the best “I love it” impression they can muster. Save yourself the worry. Save them the disappointment. You can’t go wrong with a gift card.

 

Bake Something

Don’t offer your best friend a plate of cookies and expect unending gratefulness. If you know them well enough, you can do better than that. Not even your parents would appreciate a half-assed attempt at something they did for most of your life. Grandparents? Aunts and Uncles? Perfect. They’ll look at the most botched up cooking attempt as think of it as an ultimate act of love. Just remember that sugar and salt have two entirely different tastes.

 Something To Do

This idea takes a little bit more consideration. Depending on the person, it can be really easy or really hard. If you’re unsure, it may be best to take a different route entirely. But, if done right, you can give someone a gift, an experience and a memory to last a lifetime. It can be something as simple as a trip to the local aquarium or zoo. No one is ever too old to point in awe at animals and underwater species. You can also splurge for a rock climbing lesson or a horseback trail ride. Its a perfect idea for anyone with a sense of adventure. Its also easier than hunting around for something you’re not even sure the gift-receiver will like. Keep in min individual personalities, though. It may not be a good idea to buy bungee jumping tickets for someone afraid of heights. Just a thought.

 

A Day At The Spa

This isn’t just for women, though its definitely a more popular gift for women. Spas offer a variety of services depending on the company and location: manicures and pedicures, massages, steam rooms and mud baths are a few of the services most will offer. Its the perfect gift for a parent or a hard worker who would appreciate the alone time and a little bit of pampering. Just remember that reviews count. Don’t send them somewhere off the grid to save a few bucks that will turn their day off into an off-day.

Handmade Items

Whether is jewelry, woodwork or any kind of crafts, handmade items are a perfect gift for anyone. Most of the time, you can save some money and you can let your creativity run wild. Picture frames, scrap books, wood-carvings, simple jewelry, or unique decorations…you name it, you can make it.

Yourself

It sounds a little corny, we know. Truly, the best gift you can give those closest to you is yourself. Time is a precious thing. Sometimes, in the everyday chaos of life, we forget to appreciate the short but important moments we have with people. Appreciate the people you have in your life and let them appreciate you, too.

 

 

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Halloween Costume Ideas for the Procrastinators

Halloween; a time when the leaves have all changed color, the air is crisper and stores are already shoving Christmas down customers’ throats. Halloween is a big deal for a lot of people- bigger than most major holidays. And, what’s not to love? Halloween is the one night where you can be somebody entirely different, or, finally be yourself. In many ways, Halloween is a night of ‘anything goes’.

If you’re like me, the moment November 1st hits, you’re right back to counting down the days until the next Halloween. You’ve got your costume ideas down to a select few. By the time summer rolls around, you’re stuck eagerly staring at your finished product in the closet for four months.

Not being overly prepared for the night of sweets, horror and the year’s most popular movie characters doesn’t make you any less of a fan. In fact, most people wait until last minute to even consider the possibilities of their potential Halloween costumes. The last minute decision can leave your gas tank on ‘E’ as you try desperately to sort through the leftovers at costumes stores.

So, in the spirit of creativity and being eco-friendly, here are some tips for all you last minute party-goers.

1. Paper Bag Princess

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Arguably the easiest and cheapest costume to throw together, is the “Paper Bag Princess.” It is the ultimate last minute assemble for story book fans or those with simple but creative taste. To execute, go to your local grocery store for a few large paper bags, or a few packs of paper lunch packs. Wallah! You’re a “Paper Bag Princess”!

2. Zombie Barbie

Putting a sick twist to a universal child’s toy, the “Zombie Barbie” is perfect for those who know how to work their magic with a few makeup brushes. Cheap alternatives to the most expensive of professional makeup to make this costume are toilet paper and eye-lash adhesive. You can grab a cheap wig at your local discount store, or go natural. Either way, you’re guaranteed to make a big impression on the general public if you walk out of your home looking equal parts Barbie-beautiful and cringe-worthy.

3. Lara Croft

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If you’re into films or video games, or just have a general appreciation for all things ‘badass’ then Lara Croft from “Tomb Raider” is the costume for you. Played by Angelina Jolie, Lara Croft is one of the most iconic female movie characters. She has the strength and attitude of her male peers and the sexiness to back up all that sass. Her costume is a lot easier than her personality, though. Most of her costume consists of clothing and accessories you probably already have lying around the house. The smaller pieces, like gun holsters and weapons can be bought at your local dollar store or Halloween supply shop. If you’re feeling super nifty, you can even use your own belts to create a more vintage look for the costume’s straps.

4. Solar System

With a couple quick picks at your local craft store, nothing too fancy and nothing too expensive, you can show off your astral-love by sticking the solar system to your body. Your costume will be out of this world. Yes, I went there. What’s more? It’s the perfect costume for perfectly bad puns and unsuccessful but admirable pick-up lines. Use it to your advantage, because you’ll have the world wrapped around your finger (pun #2, you’re welcome).

 

5. #Basic

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When you can catch the scent of pumpkin spice coming from your local coffee shop before the first leaf of autumn falls, this costume has your name all over it. Beware, this costume is an invite for some of the harshest critics but you definitely get kudos for being creative and crafty. So if you’re brave, or dedicated enough to your favorite caffeinated beverage, go for it! You won’t get another chance for another 364 days.

 

6. Video Game Characters

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Mario and Luigi. The dynamic duo. You’d no doubt struggle to find a person who doesn’t have child memories that include the red-clad and green-clad brothers of Nintendo. This costume idea can extend to a fellow procrastinator and the final product is both cute and significant to majority of your peers.

 

7. Old School

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Do you remember the days when grabbing a broom and a witch hat was all the rage? Or, maybe you were more of a plaid shirt wearing, hay stuffing kind of trick-or-treater. Those were the days of simplicity and the single-minded purpose of getting as many sweets packed into your pillow case. There’s nothing wrong with kicking it old school, either. Find ways to spice up an ordinary costume and make it more original.

Remember, anything goes. Judgement is like a whisper in the wind for this one night, so don’t waste it. With so many DIY tutorials, it’s easy to make the most rudimentary costume, or the most intricate, without scraping your pennies together and regretting it the morning after. Nothing is impossible with the power of internet and your own imagination.

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