Tag Archives: Gift giving

Forget The Long Lines And Crazy Parking: Give Your Loved Ones A Gift Online

In the age of the internet, gone are your excuses for not remembering someone special with a gift during the holidays. You need not fight crowds at malls or elbow your way into a post office. You can find the perfect item from the comfort of your own home. However, with the myriad choices to comb through, you might get discouraged. Fear not! Here are six great gift ideas, all available while you shop your pajamas and enjoy your morning coffee.

Netflix Gift SubscriptionWho doesn’t love movies? You can give a Netflix subscription for a month, a year, or anywhere in between. One month costs only $9.99 and a full year is $118.88

iTunes Gift CardGot a teenager or college student on your list? You can’t go wrong with an iTunes gift card. Buy them online in increments of $15 – $100 dollars. They come in a variety of styles, the newest features The Beatles!

Amazon.com Gift CardsLet the lucky recipient choose from a wide variety of options: books, audiobooks, music, toys, housewares, clothing, electronics and more! Gift cards start at $10 but go all the way up to $5,000! Plus, Amazon offers instant email notifications, so even if you wait until the very last minute, you can get it all done.

Pandora Internet Radio SubscriptionFor just $36 a year, give the gift of high quality audio, commercial-free, internet radio. Pandora is easily customizable for the most enjoyable radio experience they will ever have!

Harry and David Fruit of the Month Club.  Every moth, Harry and David promises to deliver “top quality fruit, brimming with flavor” to your friends or family members. Monthly selections depend on what is in season, but include delicacies such as tropical pineapple, sweet grapefruit, juicy pears, and more. Prices range from $99 to $299 dollars. Standard shipping delivery charges are included in your gift subscription costs.

Audible.com Gift SubscriptionAudio books are wonderful for the busy person who loves to read but spends time stuck commuting or doing other things where reading, either in print or on an e-reader, is impractical. Consider giving them an audible.com certificate. Audible.com’s audio books can be downloaded to a variety of audio players and costs only $7.49 a month.


Last Minute FREE Gift Idea

My friend Dee is a loveable grandpa and an old-fashioned kind of guy. He frets about tweets and texting, and thinks that instead of cellphones, young children should be given thoughtful guidance by parents in learning about classical music, sacred music. He also thinks that parents should read childhood classic books to their children.

To this end, he has collected some of his favorite childhood classics on a bookshelf that are saved especially for the times when his granddaughter Brianna arrives at his home for a visit. So here is my FREE gift idea:

Make a list of your favorite books and put it in a hand decorated card to give to a family member or a friend.

In the case of a grandchild, give the parent(s) your card with your favorite books listed on it. The list can be titled: Grandpa’s Favorite Books from Childhood … or Grandma’s Childhood Favorites.

You can also do a search on Amazon.com or other book websites and create a list of favorite books in other categories for other family members.

Give the list a similar personal title, such as, MY Favorite Cookbooks, or BOOKS I HAVE LOVED and highly recommend. Use your library card to check out one of the books and include it with the card when you give it as a "gift on loan" (from the library).

Many of your favorite books will probably be found at your local library. If not, ask the librarian to purchase a copy for their library collection. And include a note in your card that they can pick up the book, on hold under their name, at the library. Your favorite book can then be read by your friend and shared with others.

Happy Holidays and Blessings for the New Year! – Alexia Parks

Holiday Giving – “I Believe in Buying Stories”

I was at the Wellesley Holiday Marketplace today.  One unexpectedly exciting takeaway from the outing was not a physical object.  It was something a stranger said to me.  She was Corina Luther Belle-Isle, a financial advisor recently moved from Vermont to Boston.  Corina was helping out my friend Sue Zimmerman at her Sueb.Do booth.   In a starkly simple way Corina explained her willingness to support the craft effort:

I believe in buying stories

Wow!  I’ve been working on this idea for a couple years but that one straightforward statement blew me away.

Corina is not alone.  The Significant Objects project by Joshua Glenn and Rob Walker just finished up.  It was a social science experiment in testing whether adding fictional stories  to an ordinary flea market object can create commercial value.  (Think of J Peterman’s goth cousin as the story author, and you’ll catch the vibe of the little masterpieces.)

This hot dog was auctioned off, accompanied by a short story by Jenny Davidson

Here’s the co-collaborators’ conclusion:

Between July 6 (1st story posted) and November 20 (100th auction ended) of 2009, Significant Objects auctioned off $128.74 worth of insignificant doodads and dinguses, netting $3,612.51 for our contributing authors. Perhaps this makes us (Rob Walker and Josh Glenn) sound like the greatest salesmen alive, but we prefer to think of ourselves as quasi-anthropological researchers….

…Along the way, we combined (according to London’s Independent) “one of the oldest of all media — the near-improvised short story — with the reinvigorated writer-reader relationship afforded by Web 2.0.” Not only that, according to the Techdirt blog, Significant Objects is “one (fun) example … of content creators smartly using infinite goods (the stories) to make a scarce good (the trinket) more valuable, and putting in place a business model to profit from it.” But Fast Company drew another conclusion: “Here’s an interesting and perhaps inadvertent side effect of [Significant Objects]: It could be argued that such exposure actually makes the writers worth more, too.”

So yes, stories sell.  Deeply meaningful ones like Corina meant…stories from the heart and soul of the creator of an object.  But it’s so fascinating that these blatantly fictional ones work too.   I am imagining these 100 eBay-auctioned tchotchkes taking pride of place in the homes of 100 hipsters around the world.  I believe half their commercial value was created by their scarcity, their association with Rob and Josh in their own hipster-ness, and also by the cachet of owning the inspiration for a story by a famous or semi-famous author.

The winning bidder was kind enough to send the guys a photo of the hot dog in its swank new environs.

In other words, I don’t think Joe Schmoe could write a story about a piece of crap and get a 2,000% return on his investment.

But I do believe that Joe Schmoe who produces an object of meaning or invention or beauty, and tells its/his story can reap a rewarding, and deserved, return on THAT investment.

At the Wellesley Marketplace with Sue Zimmerman in her Sueb.Do booth. Sue has made a career of selling directly to consumers and her stories and personality are a big part of the value of a purchase, for Sue’s customers.

So, today, I surrounded myself in handcrafts at the Wellesley Marketplace.  Yum.  I love chatting with people to find out how they make the beautiful things they display.  I found some potential new Grommets and caught up with a few folks who are already in the Grommet catalog.  Having launched with us in our first year, I am delighted to bring these special finds back to the forefront.  You have NO idea how how hard these people work.

That’s one reason for supporting Grommet…if we can give these people enough business they can have more time to make work and spend less time having to sell it.  Holiday craft fairs are special….but there aren’t any of them in, say, March.

If you are interested in finding inventive and creative gift ideas for the coming holidays,  please visit my site Daily Grommet.  I hope you like it!

CGR make a great gift – and it’s free! :)

Give the gift of Chakra Girl Radio!

Short on cash and want to give someone you care about a little nudge in a healing direction? Here’s an absolutely free, full-of-good-intentions, no-stress solution:

1) visit http://www.blogtalkradio.com/chakra-girl
2) check out the archives and follow your gut feeling about which show(s) your loved one might like…segments 1 and 2 are great introductions, and segments 3-10 go step-by-step through the energy body, one Chakrum at a time
3) download them for free (as iTunes podcasts)

Please include this information with your gift:

Also…two more shows and Chakra Girl takes a holiday break. I’ll be back the first Wednesday after New Year’s with some exciting changes to celebrate 2009!

As for tomorrow’s edition of Chakra Girl Radio?  Celebration!  Solstice is almost upon us, this week’s full moon is more than a stellar event, then Hanukkah and Christmas and Kwanzaa. So much to celebrate!

9-10:30 a.m. PST/12-1:30 p.m. EST

Time to make it official – change your perception of all that weighs you down and expand that place in your heart – allow for prosperity and abundance.  Are you listening to the old tapes (your past) that tell you you’re not ready?

Any chance you’d consider changing your mind?

That is all it takes.

Chakra Girl’s mission (and yes, she has chosen to accept it 🙂 is to show you how "easy" this shift is.  Not how easy it can be, but how easy it is

Join me for ongoing discussions and more courageous callers, looking for someone to be witness to their experience.  So many blessings!  

Happy Holidays!

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