Hand-made crafts – Keepsakes are hard to beat!
Personally designed ornaments, tote bags, potted plants, fudge, etc. Why not share your children’s Christmas creations in packages mailed to far away places? (Idea & Inspiration Sources: Real Simple, Better Homes & Garden, & Martha Stewart offer wonderful inspiration.)
Entertaining/Cooking – For the “Chef Tell(s)” (or those aspiring to be) in your family…
Items – Unique pottery, serving utensils, wooden cutting boards, cookbooks, initial-ed coffee mugs, special salts or oils, etc. (Seek & ye shall find)
Cooking classes – join Chef Kait Roberts of Easy Entertaining & her team for a variety of fun & do-able classes
Food – hot chocolate, soup, pancake, cookie mixes – don’t forget your GF friends! (Sources: Williams Sonoma or Whole Foods Market offer wonderful pre-made mixes; or, of course, assemble your own in cute packaging.)
Bed & Bath – (not the store) Ready for the spa? Gift certificate for spa, massage, pedicure, etc.
New is great – comforters, pillows, sheets, towels, etc. How can you beat new?
Customize it – embroidered pillows/towels always make a classy & personalized gift (Sources: Pottery Barn, Lillian Vernon (for kids), or local embroidery shop).
Techy & Practical(ly cool!) – For the adventurers, outdoors-men, skiers…
Uber-nice (& way cool) flashlight – how’s a 30 day supply or 5 year flashlight sound for those Eagle Scouts? (Hammacher Schlemmer)
Heated towel warmers – everyone, from little snow bunnies, to skiers, or walkway shovelers will appreciate this luxury! (Fixture Universe)
Fun-loving – For those who love motion (Perhaps a “Maggie” personality…)
Let’s do it – gift certificate for series of exercise classes, or gift card to favorite airline
Game night – Who doesn’t love a good board game? – from the beautifully re-designed classics (i.e. Chess, Chinese Checkers), to newly-revised old favorites (Apples to Apples, Taboo, etc.) to brand new, everyone loves a good game!
(Sources: Restoration Hardware, Walmart, Barnes & Noble, and local toy stores)
Bling – How about a playful splurge on her?
Unique cabinet pulls, pins for your memory board or funky jewelry – try local, hand-crafted designs by Norma Jean
Vintage – For that “designed-from-afar” look in cabinet pulls, tablewear, mugs, etc., visit Anthropologie. (Yes, she will love you for it).
Extra-special & hand-created luxury – shop MacKenzie-Childs for table-wear, accessories (for home, body & even pets) & high-end furniture.
For the Bonus!
Don’t forget Fido – Yes, they’re family too…
New collar/leash – pick a fun pattern, perhaps in honor of favorite Sports team (hint: the Red Sox World Series is a great excuse!)
Pet treats – from traditional to health-conscious, ask your pet-crazy friends for good sources (hint: go local)
Luxe – Nostalgic about the Old Quarter?
A wonderful splurge for your home &/or favorite person, (attn. husbands!) invest in a Bevelo free-standing copper gas lantern. Oh, how sweet it is!