Jurich: Feel-good givingWritten by Stacy Jurich | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Consider me one of your little helper elves, as I offer some suggestions on how to make your holiday shopping more affordable, more unique and special, and more about the act of giving than the act of buying.
Regifting is when you give a gift you’ve received in the past, but have never used. I wouldn’t recommend re-gifting to the person whooriginally gave you the gift, though! Also, go through your clothes and personal items and find things you no longer use that are still in great condition. These make perfect gifts and are a way of passing on sentimental value.
Homemade gifts always score big. You don’t have to be really crafty to pull this off — it’s the effort that counts! Homemade gifts that are also functional are ideal. Cards, picture frames, sewn items, jewelry, calendars — check out Scrap 4 Art in Maumee as your local craft supplier.
Something that lasts forever is the memory of a good time together. Take your friend or family member out on a special outing that you normally wouldn’t do together. This could be holiday-specific or not; a theater performance at the Toledo Rep, Valentine or Village Players, lights at the zoo, a hike in Oak Openings, out to a wine tasting at Manhattan’s, an RSVP Dinner Party at Happy Badger …
Don’t waste money or trees on wrapping paper! Wrap your gifts in your favorite Toledo newspaper (The Star!), comics or paper grocery bags, which can be collaged and creatively decorated with jokes or poems (which is really fun to receive).
I also like to hide gifts or wrap them in another gift like a T-shirt.
You can feel good about your impact on the environment when you buy already used items. Goodwill and Savers sell clothes, shoes, winter wear, household appliances, decorative items, etc. in good condition and at a price you can go for. Your selection is sure to be unique and there is plenty to choose from to find the right match for each unique person. Record stores like B-Bop Records also sell a large amount of used vinyl and memorabilia. Don’t forget used book stores — a rare gem we must support! People Called Women!
Time and skillz
You have talent! And it’s worth something. Whether it’s baking, computer fixing, sewing, house cleaning, electronic repair, making mix CDs … think about what non-material needs you can fulfill for a loved one.
No matter where or for what you are going to spend money, I bet you have a locally owned independent option. This is the gift that gives again. When you spend at a locally owned business, your dollars continue to circulate in Toledo’s economy, making your purchase a gift for the whole community.
Local hardware stores and The Andersons are good places to look for some of the items you might go to a big box for.
It’s a noble thing to do. There are many local charities and nonprofits that gratefully accept donations. Make a donation to a cause in the name of a friend or loved one that you can both stand behind.
There are many local organizations that offer memberships, like the Phoenix Earth Food Co-Op, Toledo Museum of Art, Toledo Zoo, Toledo Botanical Garden, Toledo Choose Local, Equality Toledo and so many more. Memberships for individuals, families or businesses are great gifts that lasts the whole year (or longer!).
One of the most important components of our being often falls down our priority list. Giving the gift of health can come in a variety of ways. Come up with a creative reward system to help a friend quit smoking. Find a cookbook or recipes for healthy cooking.
Take your loved one to a new grocery store or the Toledo Farmers’ Market to buy healthier, fresh alternatives. Develop new and healthy solutions to on-the-go junk food eating. Purchase gym memberships or certificates for yoga classes.
Give a friend a restored bicycle from Toledo Bikes! or make a gift basket with home-exercise equipment like a jump rope, sweatband, hand weights and a workout DVD or VHS. Pledge to go on a walk or run with a friend each week.
The gift of health lasts a lifetime. Sometimes a little push or help from a friend can be the greatest gift and all it takes to get started in the right direction.