It’s almost Christmas! Some families, like ours, plan to open gifts on Christmas Eve. Some are planning to go to church on Christmas Eve, and open presents on Christmas morning. Or you may be planning a small Christmas with your spouse or immediate family, and then a larger extended-family gathering at some other time.
Regardless of when you are celebrating, giving gifts to one another has become a standard part of Christmas. In giving gifts we echo the first Christmas, when the Wise Men gave gifts to the Christ Child. And don’t worry if your gift-giving isn’t on Christmas day. There’s controversy about the actual day on which Jesus was born, and it probably wasn’t on December 25. And even so, the Wise Men wouldn’t have presented Him with their gifts until some time later.
If you’re wrestling with how to truly show that you care, here are some Christmas gift suggestions that cost little or nothing, and it’s not too late to get any one of them ready for Christmas. See if one of these may be just what your spouse, child, parent, or best friend may enjoy this season.
- Personalized Music Playlist. With Pandora, Spotify and similar products, many people have developed the habit of tuning in to someone else’s playlist, even if they can somewhat adjust it to their specific tastes. But how about creating a list of the songs you know your special someone just loves. Put it on a thumb drive, an iPod, or their laptop. Or burn a CD if you know they still use them. Every time they play it, they’ll think of you!
- Memory Picture Book. There are many ways to take pictures and create a slideshow, montage, digital movie, or printed book. Take some pictures that highlight the memories you and your special someone have shared, and put them together. They may treasure the memories much longer than some physical item that would cost much more.
- Cook their Favorite Food. Yes, food is disposable, but it’s one of the best ways to many people’s hearts. If their favorite food can be stored for a few days at least, such as candy, wrap it up in a package to put under the tree. If not, print a gift certificate redeemable for one home-cooked meal of what truly says “I love you” to your special someone.
- Event Tickets. Spending time doing something together is a love language for many. Think of some event that would bring your special someone extra joy: a concert, an outdoor adventure, a sporting event, a visit to the spa. Wrap up 2 tickets and include a note indicating how much you look forward to spending time enjoying that event together. You might consider an event such as Weekend to Remember.
- Gift of Time. Your child may relish a day where they get to choose any place they want to go – the zoo, the lake, the museum, or whatever. Your spouse will look forward to an afternoon or a weekend where you give them your undivided attention – talking, shopping, fishing, or doing whatever they choose – with you! Or you might give a voucher good for an afternoon, evening, or weekend of kid care duty so your spouse can enjoy a visit to the spa, fishing trip, or spiritual retreat.
- Certificates for Loving Attention. You can get creative here. How about some tickets for “reading a story” for your child. Or “personalized massage” for your spouse. Or a calling card if your parent would otherwise have to spend money to call you. Or your offer to perform a certain chore they dislike – on their request. Print or write out several certificates, and wrap them for opening on Christmas.
- Pray Together. Sure, this is something you “should” do already. But there are some ways to make this even more special and personal this Christmas. Write out longhand your personal prayer for your husband, wife, or child on some special parchment paper, and frame it. Or create a graphic on your computer of your prayer, print it out, and frame it. Or as a Christmas gift, make a commitment to pray out loud with your spouse every day this year, and give them permission to remind you.
Sometimes it really is the thought that counts. I hope these ideas have spurred you to think of something personal, loving, and unique that you can give to that special someone you care about this year. Make this a Christmas to remember.
Your Turn: What Christmas gift are you planning to give someone you love this year? Leave a comment below.
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