It’s the Christmas Season and I am very excited to finally be settled in a home with Gregory. It’s been a few months and it truly feels like our own space, complete with Christmas decorations now. During the season of giving, I wanted to make sure I was still living with intent when it came to my gift giving. I like to give awesome gifts, and this year I’ve come up with great ideas I wanted to share.
Like I said, I love to give awesome gifts, remember that time I drove all night with G to pick up my girlfriend and her daughter and we all went to the Enchanted Forest? No? Well, it was awesome and I’ve not stopped upping my gifting game since.
Giving gifts that are well thought out and have a true intent behind them brings me so much joy. When someone opens a gift and sees that I didn’t just go out and buy something at Walmart last minute (unless it was available to buy at Walmart I guess…) they see that I wanted them to enjoy a gift that I took the time to customize for my friend, them, they seem happier. Also, they don’t need to figure out how to re-gift it without me noticing.
Living with Intent – Think Local
A current aspect of living with intent that I am working on is buying local. As a high school student, I was required to read the 100-mile diet. It was a good book, but I didn’t really take in its full message. As an adult, I love the book and it inspires me to support local business and think about the environmental footprint I leave behind me.
Local doesn’t mean only local food. In our town there are many local shops selling handmade items or a variety of items made by local artists. The farmers market is open year-round as well which always proves to have something interesting. And let’s not forget, tis’ the season for Craft Fairs.
Gifting with Intent
With the thought of supporting the local economy and keeping a green aspect, but still very much aware of what I am purchasing and it being perfect for my gift receiver, I’ve starting to consider this my first Christmas season of Gifting with Intent. I’m being fully aware of my purchasing, which I need to do for my budget anyways, and the fact that I’m not spending hundreds of dollars doesn’t make me think that my friends and family will be lacking this holiday.
Here are some ideas that I’ve come up with for giving with intent that maybe you can use as well. I’ve not used all of these ideas, I don’t have that many friends and family members. But having this list compiled and stored here on my blog will make it available to me for the future when I need to be re-inspired.
- Groupon for Local Activity or Restaurant
- Certificate for Local Restaurant
- Certificate for local Business (Nail & Spa, Float House, Paintball, Kids Drop-In Center, Yoga Studio)
- Certificate for a Horseback Riding Trail Adventure
- Certificate for Local Cave Exploration Adventure
- Certificate for Snowshoeing Adventure
- Tickets to a Local Play, Musical, Comedy Show
- Tickets to Local Sports Game (Hockey, Baseball, Soccer, Rugby, Football)
- Bottle of Local Beer, Wine, Hard Liquor
- Gift Certificate for Local Beer/Wine-Making Kit
- Chocolate from Local Chocolatier
- Jam & Jelly from Local Jammer
- Local Cheese
- Local Honey
- Local Soap and Shampoo
- Local clothing and textiles (sweaters, shoes, scarfs, blankets, rugs, reusable bags, snack bags)
- Seeds, plants, pots and Potting soil for a Garden
- Local Dog Treats, soap, shampoo
- Certificate for Dog Training Lessons
- Certificate to class at local Rec Center
- Locally made bee/critter house
- Locally made art
Services to Offer
- Chopping & Stacking Wood
- House Cleaning
- Snow Clearing
- Babysitting for a Date Night
Sometimes handing over a jar of local honey just doesn’t seem like enough. So instead of just handing over a single item, I find a local bottle of wine, cheese, a CD from a local artist, maybe throw in some massage oil from a local soap store and voila, a perfect gift for a couple. A romantic local gift basket.
How about heading to your local soap store and finding a bar of soap, shampoo, lotion, bath salts and a bath bomb. Wrap it up with a loofa and a homemade body scrub and you’ve got yourself a premium local spa gift basket.
Upping the Game
If you’ve really got some cash to spend, search out a great B&B, book a stay for your prospective gift receiver. Purchase a gift certificate for a nearby restaurant, throw in a bottle of local wine and you’ve just given a great getaway for two (that probably wouldn’t have thought to do this for themselves).
This was my goal for my sister and my BiL, but I couldn’t manage the funds this year. It was going to get me some serious bonus points because I was going to have my niece stay over while they had their night out. I was going to get to be awesome Aunti and an awesome sister.
Before You Go
Do you consider what you buy and if it is local and environmentally friendly when Christmas shopping? I still bought a few things at big box stores this year, but not nearly as much as I could have. Supporting local businesses, farmers and artisans is what keeps small towns like mine going.
If you’ve got any ideas for gifting with intent that I haven’t listed, list it in the comments. I’m all done shopping for this year, but I know I’ll be returning whenever I am stumped for a future gift. Christmas or not, this is a great starter list to get the inspirational gifting juices flowing.