Need to get some gifts for the in-laws, parents, grandparents or that hard to get for friend or relative? You may be ready to throw in the towel and give them a gift card. I urge you to try a gift of memories. I am sure they will love the personal thought involved. Learn five gift ideas that allow you to give memories this Christmas.
Idea #1 Calendar
Make your relatives and or friends a digital printed Calendar. Gather digital photos from family, grandkids and start this tradition. I use snapfish.com but you can use shutterfly.com or Walmart.com to make these calendars. Sit at home and create away.
Pick a theme to make your calendar. Add the photos automatically or you decide what month you would like to place your photos. I pick pictures for the month each kid or adult has a birthday. You can include the actual birthday on the calendar square with a mini picture. If there is a month with no birthdays then highlight all the kids, use a family picture, a picture of the grandparents or a scenery picture. Make a scenery calendar if you don’t want to include people.
My mom expects one of these calendars each year. In fact, she asks me if I am getting her a calendar again this year. This is a great way to save pictures from a whole year. It’s like scrapbooking pictures for a year in review. I just got done making my gift calendar and its on it way through the mail.
During Christmas vacation, after Christmas, I usually make myself a calendar with just my kids. I usually get a great promotional sale price. I love seeing my kids on the calendar each month. Merry Christmas and Happy New Years to me!
Idea #2 Mugs
Make your husband brother, sister or grandparents a mug with a picture on it. Use memory photos or favorite scenery. It’s fun to think of the memories when drinking your coffee or tea each day. Again, make these mugs from online photo services I mentioned above. Sometimes they will have promotional prices on photo mugs.
Idea #3 Magnets
Find the perfect photo and make a magnet. This looks professional on the refrigerator and everyone will love. I have made a magnet with a verse on it as well as a family picture.
You can also make a magnet with your child’s artwork. Take a photo of their artwork and then turn it into a magnet. Again use the websites as mentioned above. You can also have your child draw a family picture and laminate it and place magnets on the back for the refrigerator or office.
Idea #4 Coupons
For a few years, I gave my in-laws coupons for gifts. One year I gave them a coupon for free housecleaning. I would do this on a day they pick. I cleaned at a resort growing up so this was not a problem. They loved it! Now, I think that would be a great gift for me.
Another year I gave them a coupon for a dinner party for four to six people at their home. They invited guests and helped select the menu. My husband and I purchased the food and went to their house to cook the meal, serve it and clean up. Again they loved it and it gave them new memories with their friends.
One year it took 11 months before they used up their coupon. Set an expiration date on the coupon or they may never use it.
Find areas your family needs help with and give them coupons for it. Examples include yard cleaning, organizing closets or photos, or even going to a play or concert together. Give them what you are good at, what you like to do and what they need.
Maybe you love to grocery shop and they hate it. Give them a coupon to go grocery shopping with them a few times. You don’t have to buy their groceries, just shop with them. We also gave my parents a gift certificate to Costco for a certain dollar amount. We have the membership, so we went with them. They selected their purchases and we all ate at Costco.
Idea #5 Vacation Together
Finally, a great way to instill memories is a trip or vacation together. My in-laws take their sons, wives, and grandkids on a week vacation together. This was our Christmas gift from them and we have many memories enjoying the beaches on Christmas day or going to a waterpark together.
If you can’t get together at Christmas then a get together in the summer is another idea. My family gathers together in the summer for three days closer to where we live and it’s like our Christmas gift to each other.
You can also use these ideas for mother’s day, father’s day and Birthdays. Give the Gift of Memories. The gift that keeps on giving.