Present inspiration for gift giving this Christmas
Do you need some present inspiration for gift giving this Christmas? Whether it’s baby’s first Christmas, or you’re at the stage your child WILL happily sit on the jolly red mans knee for a photo, this time of year can strike dread into the hearts of parents; especially when it comes to buying appropriate presents. So if you’re looking for some present inspiration, keep reading as I give you my take on gift giving this Christmas.
Really, the word ‘present’ itself can be a helpful hint. To be present is to ‘be in the moment’ and ideally notice and feel the joy of our surroundings. It’s something to appreciate.
This year I’ve put together a novel way of looking at gift giving based on the “eat, play, sleep, repeat” schedule I recommend. Just changing the way you think about present giving can stop you from being swamped by the commercialism of the season. Whether you’re on a budget, or trying to be more eco friendly and less “stuffy”, here is my take on giving gifts from the heart. Something to help you, the giver, and also the receiver, appreciate time. It doesn’t have to be much, but please let it be thoughtful.
A flexible eat, play sleep, repeat schedule is something I recommend for your little ones day. I’m proposing you consider the same routine when you think gifts (and you only need to pick one gift per person if you don’t want to go overboard).
Let’s start here, because seriously, who doesn’t like eating at Christmas time?
The most obvious eat is home baking; truffles, fudge or sweets, fancy (or not) chocolates or even jam, chutney or preserves (because amazing people still make these). People really do appreciate the effort. Something a little different and out of the ordinary works well. But do be aware of food intolerance or personal preferences.
It’s also a great opportunity to check out your local markets and support small home or Mum businesses if you find yourself a bit too “busy” to make something yourself. And going to a market can be a fun outing in itself!
On the other end of the scale there are always dining vouchers for restaurants, high tea or a meal prep service. This can include older children too. Let’s bring back the art of socialisation and coming together over a meal. And yes, that means sitting together and learning to converse with no screens (how novel).
PRESENTS THAT ENCOURAGE PLAY
Are toys the first thing that comes to mind when you think play? I bet most children would say the same. But the trick really is to know the person you’re buying for, and not buy just any old toy. Put some thought into it.
For a start make sure it’s something that will be appreciated and is age appropriate (we’re trying to live in the present here). If a gift isn’t age appropriate it will be overlooked for something else when it gets too hard (or too easy). If it gets played with at all.
Toys aren’t all bad, but think back to the classics; something that can become an heirloom and be passed down to the next generation. Wooden toys (think cars, doll houses, prams or train tracks) are always a good bet. When your child is older, collectables can also be a winner. This is something that will be kept in the family and can be added to each year. Good collectables will also hold their value. In our household it’s Lego for my son and Sylvanian families for my daughter. But the scope here is huge.
With older children you can’t go wrong with their favourite sport or hobby. Think tickets to upcoming games or shows, new equipment, clothing or an instrument they want to learn.
What about some old-school games; chess, dominoes, quoits, Frisbees? My 9-year old fell in love with playing cards because I taught him old-fashioned solitaire (it was a real stretch for me to remember how to play). To him it’s new, and novel, and it keeps him entertained without a screen in sight!
If you’re a beach loving family, beach toys, buckets and spades and cricket sets! There’s nothing wrong with the “right” play toy.
THE GIFT OF SLEEP
Yes, sleep gets its own heading under gifts!
To sleep well you generally need to be relaxed, and one way to do that is to appreciate your senses. There are so many gorgeous smelling products that help you wind down and appreciate the moment. Think lavender based products for the bedroom if you want to help induce sleep. There are some amazing oils, pillow sprays and scented candles.
For children especially, a bedtime routine is a great way to start relaxing. I often suggest a bath before bed, and there are some fabulous kids bath bombs, or bath salts around these days. Or even Jelly and slime baths (eeeuw, but the kids love them). And don’t forget the Epsom Salt (5% off with the code CS18)!
Even if someone is sleeping well, you can always make it more comfortable. Think new pyjamas or bedding (Egyptian cotton sheets for Mum maybe?). Even toddlers can get very excited about licensed characters (or princesses, dinosaurs and sharks) on a pillowcase or new duvet cover! This also encourages them to stay in their own room (which can be a win in itself).
And if you know of a parent with a child who doesn’t sleep well, you can actually give the gift of sleep with a sleep consulting voucher (contact me for more information). Seriously, there’s NOTHING better than sleep if you’ve been missing it! It makes the BEST gift!
And if you book a sleep package from a free initial call BEFORE the 5th December 2018, I will include a wee box of chocolates (or a book if you prefer). My support packages start from just $199.00 (for children aged 0-10 years) and I guarantee if you follow the plan you’ll see a significant improvements in your child’s sleep!
Consider something they love that they can do again and again (and again if you have a toddler).
Experiences or annual or monthly passes can be a huge hit if you pick the right one. Children who love animals could love an annual Zoo pass. What about a pass to Kelly Tarlton’s for the shark fiend (or the experience to go and swim with a shark). For the active child, your local trampoline park can be a winner. Do you have a theme park nearby for the adrenaline junkie? What about dance classes for the budding dancer? Actually classes for any favourite activity can be well received (dance, performance, riding, art etc); you name it; the options are only limited by the recipients interests.
What else does your recipient love doing again and again? Is it reading? Then include books. Gratitude journals make great gifts for the budding writer, there’s always colouring-in for the artist or activity/puzzle books for the strategist (and don’t forget crosswords or suduko for the older set).
And there you have it, a slightly different way of thinking about gifts this year. Something that’s not going to have the recipient rushing to the next present as soon as it’s been opened, but something to be appreciated when it’s received, and hopefully for some time after that!
I love gift giving, but it really is about the thought behind it. So don’t stress, just get to know the person you’re gifting to, think about their response to the gift – and the rest will fall into place.
If you’re after some sleep for Christmas, either for yourself or a voucher for someone else, make sure you contact me; or book a FREE call HERE. And if you’d like to keep up to date with the latest blogs, sign up to my newsletter HERE.
Have a great festive season!