By Laurie Jo Miller Farr
Search out great gift ideas that go beyond traditions like Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer socks or a box of chocolates. All the holiday gifts on this list are under $100 and many of them are under $50. The internet makes gift giving easy, of course, and saves you time so you can enjoy shopping and dining on Main Street or at the local mall without the pressure and frenzy.
“Alexa, play some Christmas carol music.” Make life easy when you talk to Alexa. The second generation black Echo dot is a hands-free voice-controlled device that suits anybody for any room of the house. Even better, you can cross off several names from your shopping list; one Echo Dot is free when you buy six and you’ll save $20 when you buy three.
Keep your phone charged twice as long with an extra 100% battery life built into your protective phone cover. Mophie does two jobs in one. It’s a lightweight case that charges your phone charges without taking it off and then delivers juice when the phone battery runs out. For newer model smartphones, the wireless charging pad is Qi-enabled with built-in magnets to align a Mophie charge force case that ‘s ready for a quick grab-and-go.
Perfect for a wine lover, these customized 18-inch ash wood signs are crafted in the style of a wine barrel. Order it to be laser engraved with a family name (or a nickname or a business name), plus the date, year and location. It’s ideal as a house warming or hostess gift, too and will look great in the kitchen, playroom, or over an at-home bar.
For someone who’s always looking for something, the tile finder is the answer. It works via Bluetooth when attached to items such as keys or phones. The battery lasts a year and it will even make your phone ring when it’s on silent. The tile is now 25 percent smaller than ever. You can save money by ordering the 4-pack and keep one for yourself!
Go with a favorite scent that makes a home smell lovely. Choose Santorini for memories of the Greek islands or lavender for summer in the south of France, perhaps? An alternative to a scented candle, or paired with one, a room diffuser delivers scent all the time without the worry of a lit flame. Try one with pretty package design from a small business owner based out of Seattle, Antica Farmacista.
A gift that keeps giving right through the year, or even longer, is a magazine subscription to match someone’s favorite interest, from health and fitness to celebrity news and gossip. Save a ton over the newsstand cover price and send it with a gift announcement. It’s just the kind of thing that people tend not to gift to themselves, but truly appreciate when someone else does.
This is a game changer for new parents among other types of super busy people. Pre-program a meal setting such as stew, chili, rice, poultry, soup and more choices to slow cook, steam, pressure cook, or brown and sauté. There’s a delay start timer and a warmer option, too. The clever express crock pot is dishwasher safe and comes with a recipe book.
How does 31,000 brushstrokes a minute sound? Swap out the manual toothbrush for an electric one. Promising better hygiene, fewer stains, and more effective cleaning, it’s a best seller that’s rechargeable (holds charge for up to three weeks) and comes with a travel case. With a two-minute timer, the toothbrush will ding when time’s up.
It’s easy to show you’ve put some thought into it when you customize a gift for a family member, the newlyweds, brand new parents, or a proud grandparent. It’s fun to transfer favorite photos to a deck of cards—or choose to make coasters, magnets, a calendar, or a photo gallery puzzle instead. This is a gift that works as a conversation starter and kids love it, too.
If you’ve been searching for a picnic basket, you know how hard they are to find these days. This one is as handy as you’d find in a London department store, complete with service for four comprising flatware, dishes, plastic wine glasses, cotton napkins, salt and pepper shakers, and a bottle opener. The brown wicker basket has leather handles and is lined with a fresh blue-and-white gingham fabric plus a waterproof picnic blanket.
For the littlest people on your list, opt for something special they’ll treasure for years to come. These children’t books are great for toddler-aged kids up to pre-teens. The colorful picture books are customized with your child’s name to create his or her very own adventure story.