There are seasons in everyone’s life when gift giving is made more challenging by a lack of time. Whether there is a new baby in the house, illness, travel or an overload at work, the task of shopping at a variety of stores over several days or even weeks is daunting. If you are having one of those years and need to simplify Christmas gift giving, here are some gift giving ideas design to streamline the process while still providing enjoyable gifts for everyone on your list.
Online and Gift Cards
Truly the easiest thing in the world is simply to shop online. There are so many amazing deals that often include free shipping that it will save you loads of time and energy. I would guess that most people could complete all their shopping simply by purchasing everything at Amazon if necessary. Purchase books, CDs, or DVDs for everyone on your shopping list. One transaction, one shipping fee, and you are done. If you are very pressed for time or ideas, give a gift card.
Family or Group Gifts
Give each family a gift instead of buying individual gifts for each member. Rather than spending $20 on each person in the family, buy one nicer gift for $75 or $100 that can be enjoyed by everyone. It could be a family pass to the zoo, tickets to a show, a gift card for a getaway, or a fun appliance such as an ice cream maker.
One Stop, All the Gifts
Purchase all of your gifts from one store. Make a list of all your gift recipients and think through what the store would have that would work for each one. Make one trip to that store and be done.
Make everyone the same food gift. Select a food gift that everyone would like and make it in bulk. Set aside one afternoon or evening to make the food and package it for gift giving. This could be a salsa, a gourmet cocoa mix, jam, coffee cake, cookies in a jar, or candies.
Give everyone the same food basket. Cheese and crackers, chocolates, cocoa packets, gourmet coffee, and snack foods all make a fun gift basket. Or make a pizza and movie night gift basket. Buy as many of the same baskets as you need, purchase Christmas bows or ribbons to decorate, and fill with items purchased at the store. Assemble all the gifts and once and you are done!
Give everyone a Christmas ornament selected from a store that carries a wide selection. If you have a little more time, find a design from an idea book or come up with your own design. Make all of them at once and wrap attractively.
Convenience and Friendship
Provide your recipients with the gift of convenience. Give each person a gift card for a service that will make life easier. Ideas include cards for a car wash, gas, coffee, drug store, or takeout.
Instead of exchanging gifts, set up a time for a group of friends or family members to get together for coffee or lunch. Everyone gives and receives the gift of friendship with no additional shopping required.
Purchase several gift cards that could be appropriate for anyone. These might include a book store, an online music store, a restaurant, or a department store. Wrap them in paper appropriate for anyone and keep them on hand for last minute unexpected guests.