One of the worst parts about buying presents is that it feels like a competition, and that if you don't make someone's jaw drop and eyes widen as soon as they open your present, you've failed. That's a lot of pressure. It takes the fun out of buying presents because you're thinking too much on how to blow their minds that you forget that useful presents can be just as appreciated, even if it's not straight away.
I'm sure we've all received presents that have made us think, What on Earth am I going to do with this? or even, Oh, okay. I have a lot of things like this already, and you know what? It's always those presents that have a lasting affect on me in the long run. It's the useful, practical presents that will come in handy when you least expect it.
I've never gotten a present that I haven't used before. When I was younger I didn't understand why people could possible want to own a plethora of containers, but now that I have family members who work for Tupperware and always give them to me as presents during the holidays, I totally get it.
In fact, I love receiving more bowls and containers! I am always in the kitchen so they all get used eventually. Plus, they're not something that I would buy myself, which is another good thing to think about when gift-giving. You don't have to win the present-giving competition, you just have to think about something that the person probably wouldn't get for themselves, but would get a lot of use out of nonetheless.
The gifts on this list aren't going to make someone tear up, and they're probably not going to share photos of them all over their social media anytime soon, but they will get used and they will be appreciated in the long run. Do someone a favour - even without them realising - by getting them something on this list!
1. Gift cards.
I know people worry that money and gift cards are impersonal, but I have never once thought that. Money and gift cards are super useful gifts that can benefit someone in so many ways. Whether there's something that they want but feel guilty spending money on, or something that they actually need and are disappointed that they have to spend their own money on it, the gift of money or a gift card will solve their problem.
I used the gift cards that I got for my birthday on household items and it helped me enhance my way of living immensely. Little things like a recycling bin or some storage for a tiny bathroom can make the biggest change in someone's life. Don't fear the gift card.
2. Toasted sandwich maker.
Toasted sandwiches are the best, there's no denying that. They're a great snack to have in Winter as they warm you up, and there's so many different things you can have on them. Perhaps I was just a little hungry when I decided to add this item to the list, but I've never met someone who didn't enjoy a good toasted sandwich, so I still think this is a pretty great gift.
Everybody needs towels. Even if they don't get used right away, you can bet that the recipient will be grateful in a few months time when all their current towels are due for a trade-in, and they've already got some brand new ones waiting in the cupboard for them. Plus it's always good to have extras for when guests stay over!
4. Lifestyle/self improvement books.
Lifestyle books are all the rage right now, so they must be doing something right. I'm sure you've all heard of The Subtle Art of Not Giving A F*ck; I haven't even read it but I feel like it's a great gift idea considering how many people love it. It's definitely on my to-read list! If your recipient isn't into self improvement books, there's always a heap of biographies about some of the world's most interesting people - or, if you really want to play it safe, get them a cute book about dogs. It's fool-proof.
Much like towels, socks are something everyone needs, but no one is jumping up and down in excitement for when they need to buy some. Maybe this is just the millennial in us who would rather spend money on takeout food, but seemingly mundane things like socks are the best kind of presents as it means we don't have to get them ourselves. I filled Daniel's stocking with socks and underwear this year and he was more than grateful that he didn't have to buy them for himself 😂
6. Storage containers.
I LOVE storage containers. As I mentioned before, I have family members who work for Tupperware, so I get given a ton of containers for my birthday and Christmas, and I love it. They always come in handy, and I could never have too much. Plus they are easy to store away for when you don't need them! You can bet that you'll be silently thanked whenever your recipient needs to store some craft items or decides to pre-pack their lunch for the first time in their life and they remember that they have the storage containers that you gave them to use.
If you take away on thing from this post, let it be this: don't stress about presents. If you don't know what to get someone that will make them jump and down with joy, then just get them something that you know they'll use at some point. There's nothing wrong with being the practical friend!
Until next time,