I’m tired of the same old materialistic rush to buy the biggest and most expensive Christmas and Kwanzaa gifts for my family and friends. I want my gifts to have more meaning, more heart, more personality.
Plus, I’m broke.
So, this year I am challenging myself (and you) to give holiday gifts only from local businesses, or homemade gifts. And because I know that I ‘m kidding myself with that homemade thing, let’s focus on local buying.
I’m not going to tell you the names of the Twin Cities merchants that I favor (lest I reveal my presents to my friends and family), but feel free to leave the name of your favorite stores below.
Here are some creative gift ideas that can be found at your local businesses and artisans:
- Handmade home accessories (vases, pottery, lamps, furniture, etc.)
- Original paintings, sculptures or photography
- Theater or concert tickets from regional or community companies
- Gift baskets made from goods gathered at locally owned grocers or co-ops
- Advanced: Create a recipe using only locally grown goods
- Books from locally owned sellers
- Advanced: Give books only from regional authors and/or independent, regional publishers
- Handmade jewelry
- Weekend getaway at a local bed & breakfast or boutique hotel
- Flowers or plants native to the region
- Advanced: A gardener’s gift basket with native plant seeds and supplies
- Beer, wine or spirits from regional microbreweries, wineries or distilleries
- Advanced: Tickets for a local wine or beer tasting, or tour of a vineyard or brewery
- Advanced: A wine/beer of the month club sent directly to me!
- Season passes for state or regional parks
- CDs/downloads from local artists
- Concert tickets to local band events
- Advanced: Gift certificates or season tickets for a local music venue
- Gift certificate for continuing education or community ed classes, such as cooking classes, architecture tours or literary events
- Passes to local museums, zoos or botanical gardens
- Gift certificates for locally owned restaurants
- Advanced: Create your own restaurant-of-the-month club
- Advanced: Plan a pub crawl of area bars that specialize in serving local beer or wine (and invite me!)
Did I leave off your favorite gift idea?