I love the holidays.
I love my friends and family, the amazing smells, the cool crisp air, SNOW!!, (yes, even us beach bums do love the snow on occasion – it is magical), all of our traditions, exchanging gifts, our annual tree trimming party and all of the things! There is no end to the amount of truly awesome good times with friends, family, yummy food, fabulous cocktails, general shenangans and overall amazing that is the holidays.
What I have come to dislike is the shopping for and exchanging of meaningless “stuff” part. I can’t honestly say if it’s my 20yrs in retail marketing, or if it was when Black Friday deals started being released in early November so plans for which tech and what gadget was going to be the thing to stand in line for did me in, but either way…. it should be fun and an experience that is cool and unique for everyone. ‘Tis the season of sharing and fun, not standing in lines and stressing out.
Note: this does not mean I am anti tech, or gadgets, nor am I advocating against all “Big Box” retailers here. But I do enjoy trying to make the experience of gift giving during the holidays as fun, unique and memorable as possible.
"Welcome Christmas. Bring your cheer,
Cheer to all Whos, far and near."
So, here are my top 5 gift giving ideas that are more about amazing experiences than about meaningless stuff :
Gift the Give of Learning.
My son loves to paint, draw, write, 3D modeling, video editing, pretty much anything in the creative realm, he is into it and has been since he could pick up a crayon. He used to write his own version of ad campaigns for my clients until that became too boring, now his new favorite thing when not editing video or doing small graphics for us, he loves to watch when Nelson and I do a live painting broadcast. He has even painted with him a few times. No, Nelson’s hair is NOT as cool as Bob Ross, but he is known to paint some very happy palm trees! If you haven’t seen any of our live broadcasts, you should totally join us some time, they are fun and very zen. We also have a Patreon subscibsciption level called the “Exotic Explorer” it is $25/month and includes online video tutorials as well as all kinds of other goodies.
Star Wars fans? Make it a night out!
One of my favorite recent Christmases was two years ago, I was home in Jersey for the holidays. As you can see in the above photos of my son and nephew, it was a VERY Star Wars Christmas. Everyone, of all sizes was excited about The Force Awakens being released and my brother in law bought everyone Star Wars Imax tickets for Christmas afternoon. We had 3 generations of fans all together and to top it off my mom had bought everyone from the tiniest in the group to the oldest their own shirts. Best present that year. I highly recommend doing it, and if you do, well then of course don’t forget to gear up!
Ah, The Gift of Mystery!
Another favorite of mine for the person who has everything, never needs or wants anything and you just want to surprise and delight them when you see them open something fun, cool and unexpected! We make four different kinds of mystery boxes and would be happy to even custom create one for you.
The gift of Travel and Memories
This is something understandably that we can’t or possibly wouldn’t want to do every year, however when we do it can not only be some of the most memorable holidays but also the best gift. Lots of customers have had us customize ornaments over the last few years with dates to commemorate special vacations as gifts for the holidays, but there was one that is my favorite vacation holiday story yet from a customer. Every year she and her family go to Mexico for vacation for the holidays, they have been doing it since her children were young she said, and she brings a small fold up tree to have in their suite. This year, though her children are all grown, they will be taking their annual trip and for fun, she ordered our Fiji ornaments to take along with the tree so that when she sets it up everyone will have a tiny present to open and decorate it with as well as a small piece of their beach holiday to take home with them. What an awesome memory and vacation!
The Gift of Cheer all Year Long!
This is one of my favorite gifts to give, I am personally a tiny bit of a wine snob, not a REAL snob by any stretch. I know enough to have fun tasting new things and sharing with friends over tapas and get togethers. Sometimes you get into a rut though and just keep picking up the same old bottle so I have found that wine clubs are a great way to add variety and a great gift for anyone looking for something fun and different. Lot 18 is my personal favorite. They send a tasting set to better get to know what you like and don't like prior to sending your first shipment. This is not only fun, but ensures that the gift you are giving is one that will be truly enjoyed every time it arrives. For some added cheer and to ensure there is something fun to actually open, pair this gift with a set of our Huli Pau 2.0 Wine Glass Set for the ultimate gift of cheer!
I think that's a wrap for now. I'm sure I will have more before the holidays are over, I mean come on, it's not even Thanksgiving yet. We still have Holiday Cards to talk about, and menus to plan, gift wrapping, and drink recipes that get you through the season... I totally meant cookie recipes!
Thank's for reading, and remember whatever you do this holiday season, have fun doing it!