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The act of giving gifts is a gesture of friendship, love, celebration, acknowledgment and thanks.  With a little planning and forethought, your gifts will resonate with the recipient and be remembered for years to come.


Plan Ahead

A reminder will do the trick. Hint: your email account provides an easy way to record upcoming holidays, birthdays, and special occasions on an interactive calendar. Look ahead a year, enter these events in your program and click on the reminder option to cue you 10-14 days before the date. This will prompt you to start shopping for a gift. With your gift list clearly in mind, you’ll have time to hunt for just right gifts and sale items. Be sure to allow for transit time if you’re shipping the gift. Good guidelines for mailing and ground shipments are typically 2-5 business days, depending on the distance. Keeping this time in mind will help to avoid rush charges and ensure your gift arrives on or before the desired date.


Respect Your Budget

The cost of your gift will not be the deciding factor in its success.  Gifts given with sincerity are appreciated even more so than expensive, rushed and impersonal last minute items. By assigning a dollar amount to each desired gift on your list, you’ll be better prepared to shop within your means.  Clip coupons (and keep them with you!) and take advantage of early bird specials to stretch your gift budget. 


Give from the Heart

Watch what the person talks about frequently, what they buy for others, or where they like to shop.  These little clues translate to a great future gift idea from you.  Bounce gift ideas around with others and always take care to verify important details (dietary restrictions, sizes, color preferences, and correct spelling of family member names, etc.)  


Give a gift you know your recipient will connect with and enjoy. Are they a dark or milk chocoholic, a tea toter or coffee afficianado, a connoisseur of sweets or a jewelry lover, are they in need of pampering, or someone who comes to life in the garden?   Will a gift that incorporates a favorite family photo send her over the moon?  Remember, the best gifts are the ones that demonstrate you paid attention to their desires and tailored a gift to address their unique interests.


Acknowledge Good Deeds

So often we intend to tell those we care about “thank you”, “good job”, “I’m so proud of you”, “you’re the best”, but we let the opportunity slip by. Taking the time to send something special, not necessarily costly or extravagant, will do the trick and will be cherished and remembered for years to come. A simple note of encouragement or recognition cannot be overestimated, especially during transitional or emotional times. Accompany it with a small token; a sweet or something you hope the recipient will just love, will go miles in connecting and creating a moment of genuine human contact.


Just Because

An unexpected gift will almost certainly have more impact than “Hallmark Holiday” occasions.  Are you thinking of someone today?  Why not grace their mailbox or doorstep with a tangible gesture to let them know.  “I believe in you,” “You’re a great sister,” “Hang in There,” “Happy Spring,” “Break a Leg,“ and “You’re on my Mind” are great reasons to reach out to brighten someone’s day.


Beware of Wrappings

Beautiful gifts don’t necessarily need to rely on excessive ribbons, boxes, wrapping paper, plastic, bags or fancy tape.  A tastefully wrapped gift with materials that can be reused or recycled demonstrates sensitivity and caring for the environment.