The 11 Best Christmas Gifts Ever

Oprah has her extravagantly popular favorite things.  And Martha is whipping up near-to-perfection gifts at her farm.  Here's my own sampling of truly lovely and thought-filled goodies to share with those on your list.

And don't call me Scrooge, but I think #11 isn't all that bad an idea ...

1.  Ornaments
Those sweet little hangings, some given decades ago, last forever and bring back the most poignant memories.  Unpacking them each December does nothing but bring a flood of warm thoughts and fond memories.  Especially those fragile oh-so-imperfect ones made long ago by eager little hands.  

2.  Books
If something you've read has enlarged your borders or turned your life around, that's a gift worth sharing.  {Here's a few volumes that changed my faith and a few more that I use for daily life.}

3.  Edibles
Gotta-eat-the-whole-loaf fragrant cinnamon bread ... warm from the oven cheese danish ... crunchy homemade granola ... a plate of lusciously decorated cookies ... a box of decadent homemade fudge ... nutritious soup still hot in the pot.  {How 'bout these favorite recipes for piping hot fresh flaky scones and my mom's surprise meringue cookies!}

4.  Experiences
Think tickets to a play or a dinner theatre or a spa or a local restaurant.  Handcrafted gift certificates for free babysitting or snow shoveling or errand running.  Opportunities for the kids to learn a new sport ... maybe ballet or art lessons?  Their parents will rise up and call you blessed.

5.  Candles
Stress-reducing lavender vanilla.  Zesty mango peach salsa.  Sweet raspberry.  And pine scented Christmas scented candles that burn throughout the season.  {I'm a big Yankee Candle fan!}

6.  Photographs
Matted and framed ... etched onto a mouse pad ... worked into a scrapbook ... printed on a calendar, this is a surefire winner for any grandparent or a far away loved one. {Shutterfly is easy to navigate}.  A digital picture frame loaded with favorite shots?  An extravagance that's hard to top.

7.  Subscriptions
Those magazines, fruit, newspapers, flowers {or whatever!} remind the recipient of you each and every time they make an appearance at their door.

8.  Gift Cards
Do you truly know their specific size, favorite color, unique style?  Probably not.  Save on endless hours trolling the mall and horrifically long lines for returns ... and allow them to take advantage of post-holiday sales.

9.  Heirlooms
Few things are more pitifully obnoxious than family members pawing through your belongings like vultures after you've left this world, arguing over who gets what.  How much more meaningful to give those family heirlooms now with your love, hugs, and the opportunity to share the story behind the chosen gift.  You receive the huge rush of joy that comes with giving these carefully selected, priceless treasures in person, sooner rather than later.  And your shelves will say 'thank you' for letting them breathe again.

10.  Livestock
Who needs yet another pair of slippers or a boring old tie that will hang there unused forever? You can choose to honor the recipient by gifting to those in need. Samaritan's Purse Gift Catalog is a longtime favorite ... your donation purchases livestock, chicks, blankets, hot meals, shoes, bicycles, you name it.  You can even feed a baby for a week.  It just doesn't get better than this.

11.  Nothing
Get the full size, ready to print holiday gift exception certificate right here.

What do you love to give?


What's bowled you over when you received it?


sharing gifts with
 Anita  .  Kelly  .  Holley  .  Lyli