One of the Bellator Society podcasts during Advent centered on Gifting. If you missed it, our faboo founders went through several gift ideas from the Bellator contributors. I love a good gift idea. I also love sharing a good gift idea.
There are some things that I come across and immediately my mind goes to “who can I give this to.”
I have found beautiful receiving blankets that I purchased as soon as a dear friend had a baby. I have earmarked gifts on Etsy that I knew I would purchase for the next godchild to receive a sacrament. And I can neither confirm nor deny mentally inventorying nieces and nephews to determine which was the appropriate age and disposition for certain books.
But my favorite kind of gift to give is the one that is tailor made for the recipient, something that definitely didn’t come out from the gift closet. This kind of gift is a manifestation of knowing someone well and recognizing something that can uniquely bring them joy. (Conversely, giving gifts to people I don’t know well is really hard – I can turn into a pile of anxiety over what minute detail that I know about them could turn into a thoughtful gift, and tend to err on the side of overdoing it because I’m just unsure.)
Given that I’m a sentimental person, I tend to think that the best gifts are tied to memories or shared experiences – a custom painting of our children at the beach for my husband, a charm bracelet for Gramma with a special charm from each of her ten grandchildren, tickets to a play or the symphony for the kids’ birthdays, a custom notebook with a picture of my daughter and her bestie for the bestie’s birthday paired with some smell-good pens.
Now, if the idea of giving gifts gives YOU anxiety, there are some practical ways to make it easier on yourself.
For the people that are hard to shop for, I tend to have a running note on my phone. I almost always have a list for my husband. How else am I going to remember that he wants a new golf umbrella? And, it’s a good place to jot down interesting things that come across my Instagram feed when I’m a couple of months out from the next occasion. (While I am always down for giving gifts without an occasion, that isn’t always in the budget for bigger items, and I also have to be careful not to induce guilt in the recipient. That takes away from the joy of giving!)
Speaking of Instagram, my feed has turned into a wealth of Catholic artists after purchasing a couple of items from Etsy.
If you find a shop on Etsy that you like, check out their Instagram account. Odds are good that they promote similar type artists, and even if they don’t, Instagram will start recommending similar accounts in your Search function. If you haven’t followed @zelieandco, they do a weekly auction of Catholic goods, and I have found some really cool shops that way, too.
And it may sound silly, but I wholeheartedly recommend brainstorming a holiday ahead. This gives you time to get that cool personalized gift that isn’t available via Amazon Prime. Clearly, this is not wise with children at Christmas.
If you are particularly proud of a gift you have given or received, tell us on Facebook or Instagram! Inspire our community with ways you have shown or felt love through a gift. Then it wasn’t just a great gift for one person – maybe it will be a great gift for another person, too.