What’s the best gift?

Hint: it’s not a puppy or any other kind of playful pet


Tribune News Service

Casey Anderson, Opinion Editor

For most, the holiday season is a time filled with tinsel, gift-giving, and family time. The holidays are wonderful until, well, you realize that someone special is expecting a gift. And let me tell you, fellas, it is not a heart shaped necklace she is looking for.

Now, now, don’t panic. I’ve got you covered. I’m not insurance, but I can spare you the painfully awkward discussions of “oh…thanks! I really like it! Do you maybe…still have the receipt?” And I can spare you the painful rejection of a declined debit card.

Been there, done that. The dollar menu and a debit card do not always work out as planned.

So, I’ve compiled a list of Christmas gift ideas that will not only be more meaningful to the receiver, but will be enjoyable for you to make, as well. A handmade gift will always go farther than some chocolates (but do not forget the chocolates, either…).

Write someone a letter this holiday season. Simple as that. Writing a handwritten letter about how you feel about someone, what you appreciate about them, or maybe even just an update on your life can go a long way. Mail it to a relative, distant friend, or even just across the street to your neighbor. Writing what you love about someone is something that will warm anyone’s heart in this winter weather.

Bake desserts. I have truly only met a few people who do not like chocolate, and I am not friends with them anymore. Kidding, kidding! But I am suspicious of them… The point is, baked goods are a wonderful gift idea for just about anyone. You can invite someone over to help you bake and even make a fun night out of it! And I doubt anyone will notice if one or two (or three…) of the desserts go missing!

A mason jar of pick-me-ups or compliments. Gifting a handmade present like this is sure to bring a smile to anyone’s face. You can fill the jar with pieces of paper that have things you love or appreciate about someone, or even just silly memories you have with them. It is an intimate gift that will provide months worth of smiles!

Now, the best gift of all you can give this holiday season is donations. It is wonderful to give gifts to the people in your life, but there are also people that you have never met that may need a little love, too. Some people do not have a roof over their head this holiday season, or warm coats to protect them from the biting wind – be the one to provide that for someone.

If you are fortunate enough to have the resources to give, you should. Donating winter clothes, non-perishable food, toiletries, or even just your time to those in need can make the winter just a little bit easier on our fellow humans.