Holiday Gift Buying Guide

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Holiday Shopping Guide by Jessica Washington 166156351

When shopping for a holiday gift this year, take a different approach and think to yourself, “what won’t get forgotten about within a few weeks?” Because that is what happens with many of the items exchanged during the gift-giving season, it’s important to put yourself in the shoes of the person or people on the receiving end of your kind gesture this holiday season.

As you get older, mass distribution of random gifts to any and everyone you know typically lessens and you find yourself only shopping for a select group of people in your life, and buying more meaningful (and expensive) gifts. This list usually includes: parents, children, spouse and friends, and while your plans may differ depending on the person, below you’ll find great gifts for each category that can be applied to others in your life as well.

Parents

Since there’s no way to ever repay the man and woman who gave you life, opt for something heartfelt and personalized that they will appreciate for its sentimental. Sure, a great piece of jewelry or new tool kit is nice, but tug on those heart strings a bit this year by entertaining some of the more unique gifts such as taking a photo of the two of you, or your entire family and having it blown up on canvas for hanging in the living room…turn it black and white for a nostalgic touch. Alternatively, if you want to get them something you’ll see them wearing, go for a nice, unique piece of personalized jewelry. Etsy.com has an endless selection of these type of accessories from artisans all over the world offering items such as jewelry with birthstones of each child, or specially embroidered pillows that you can personalize to include a special message from you to mom/dad. Get online and see how personalization can work for your parent’s gift this year!

Spouse

This might be the most important and stressful gift you have to give this season. But since you are likely spending 99% of your time with your other half, don’t make it such a burden on yourself. All you really have to do is listen…listen to what he’s talking about, what lights him up, and especially when he mentions things he wants – jot down a little reminder for yourself so that you can be prepared on your next trip to the mall, department store or the hardware store. Stay away from items like ties and cologne in order to keep it original.  Get together with your friends or anyone who can help you and have a “photo shoot” with full glam and shoot 12 photos, making him a 2014 calendar that will be extra special! Alternatively, lean toward the latest tech item that he’s been eyeing. It’s always fun to have a new toy at Christmas, no matter how old you are. Whether it’s a customized, pre-loaded iPod with all of his favorite songs or a new TV for his man cave, you can almost never go wrong with electronics for your guy.

Child

Children always love electronics and the latest gadgets on the market targeted directly at them. From iPads, and the latest Call of Duty video game to the newest Beats by Dre headphones and PS4, kids are always going to want what’s hot. Those gifts are sure to get a big smile. But you can also think about giving your kids gifts that will create anticipation. What hobbies and sports are they into? You could give piano lessons or tickets to the ballet, a sports game or concert by someone they love. And don’t forget that all kids are creative. You can give art supplies of any kind and see what they might come up with, or even a pile of costumes from the local Salvation Army for them to play dress-up if that’s age-appropriate. Another Christmas favorite is kid’s digital cameras. They work just like the grown-up version, loading images with a USB cable right to the computer, but their bodies are sturdy and drop-proof so you don’t have to follow your kid around worrying that he’s going to break the thing. Lastly, don’t forget about books! They might be old-fashioned, but on a cold holiday evening when the family is all sitting around, your child might surprise you by wanting to dive into the printed word. Or, get them an e-reader and encourage their love of literature with the lure of technology! Give them a budget for buying books and see what they download. With parental oversight, of course. It’s a chance to learn what your child is all about.

Good luck this holiday season and happy shopping!!