Ad Spot

Get creative with your gift ideas

By Staff
Michelle Blaylock, Mom's Corner
There are people who are hard to buy for because they receive many gifts, teachers for example. I know one teacher that every few years would bring some of her many figurines and other trinkets to school on the last day and give one to each child in her class! She said she started doing this after about 10 years of teaching and couldn’t figure out what else to do with them. What I thought was so sad was the money that was spent on those gifts could have been spent on things that would have been more useful. I also have trouble with people like my husband and father. They would often like handyman type tools and I don’t know enough about those kind of items to choose wisely.
So to help solve these problems and to lower my stress level a bit, I’ve developed some standard gifts. For family I do try to buy things that I know they use or, in the case of my husband, I just take him shopping before Christmas and have him show me two or three things he wants or needs. I can choose from those things he shows me and it’s still a bit of a surprise Christmas morning. Everyone jokes about Grandma giving socks and underwear, but you have to admit they are useful. One of my grandmothers usually gave a large container of coffee to her grown children. Both of my grandmothers were both a little sneaky, however, and would occasionally hide something in with the socks. One year I found a dollar in the toe of each sock in the package.
I also give homemade gifts if it’s something I think the receiver would like and use. One year I gave homemade bath salts to my sisters. Other gifts I have given that have been appreciated are some of my favorite recipes. I usually accompany these with a sample of the finished product. My sisters and several teachers received “jar cookies” a few years ago. These are really neat. All the dry ingredients to make the cookies are put into a large jar and all that has to be done is adding the “wet” ingredients. The web site www.thatsmyhome.com offers many different recipes for jar cookies, as well as recipes for muffin mixes, brownie mixes, seasoning mixes and many others. Of course there are many kinds of homemade gifts to give. Things like homemade pasta, jellies (also a favorite of one of my grandmothers), and candies are great, too.
Some other ideas would be to buy your favorite brand of something and enclose a coupon in the present for the item, in case your recipient likes it as well. How about a subscription to a favorite magazine you know they like?
Your time can be one of your best presents. For example, have a mother to buy for? How about a few days of free baby sitting? Most moms would probably think you just handed them winning lottery ticket! How about inviting a friend out to a dinner and movie? Have a family member that lives out of state? You could round up pictures (old and new) of the family and make a scrapbook for your far off relatives. Have several people in your family moved? Give each person in your family an updated address book with pictures of each person or family. These are also things your children can help with and the present really comes from your family!
Another thoughtful and practical gift can be gift certificates. I especially like to give gift certificates to people like coaches and teachers. Believe it or not, they do have a life outside of the classroom. Most stores have gift certificates, you can find them for everything from hair cuts to movies to teacher supply stores. There are even gift certificates for online businesses. Remember it doesn’t have to be a huge gift certificate or gift card. Just think if each person gave $5 in a class of 20 children that would be $100!
As you can see, I tend to lean a little heavy on the practical gifts. I guess that comes from having six children. However, one impractical gift I like to give is an ornament.
With the variety of ornaments available, it’s usually easy to find a ornament that reflects the receiver. For example, I love to collect penguins. I have penguins in all shapes and sizes and usually every Christmas I receive at least one penguin ornament from someone. I hope to eventually have enough penguin ornaments to have an entire Christmas tree decorated with just penguins. (Yes, my mother is crazy!--exasperated 17 year old daughter.)
Do you have some other unique ideas for gifts or a great holiday recipe? Please send it to me at: momscorner@juno.com. I look forward to hearing from you!

News

Christmas in the Park enjoyed in Falkville despite rain

News

Somerville woman arrested after threat made in Priceville

News

Officials: Escaped Morgan inmate apparently caused his own death

News

Majority leader Stadthagen sees strength in election of 26 republican legislators

News

Lacey’s Spring community fighting proposed rock quarry

News

Hartselle students participate in character expo

News

Authorities: Gifts in unlocked cars a tempting target so take preventive measures

At a Glance

Three arrested for theft of vehicle in Hartselle

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Annual Christmas parade to be held Thursday  

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Some concerned over new Hartselle superintendent hire  

At a Glance

Town of Falkville to hold Christmas in the Park Sunday

At a Glance

Hartselle Holiday Market returns Saturday

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Old Hartselle post office to become event center, new home for chamber  

At a Glance

‘Have a Hart’ information session to be held Dec. 2

Morgan County

Future leader

News

Alabama DHR accepting applications for next round of child care bonuses 

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Spirit of Thanksgiving: Volunteers deliver 266 food bags on holiday for Meals on Wheels  

At a Glance

Morgan County Sheriff’s Office to let citizens behind the scenes with academy  

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Winter window wonderland  

At a Glance

Council to interview candidates for Parks and Rec director job  

Hartselle

Live nativity scene returns to First Christian Dec. 7-10

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Local church prepares 400 Thanksgiving meals

News

HIS students help clean up effort at Mt. Tabor Cemetery 

News

Lovely landscape

x