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The Elder-Boomer Buzz, Issue #015 -- Fun Alternative Gifts
December 18, 2009

Issue #1
Fun Alternative Gifts

Okay, I know weíre in the midst of the holiday season. Some of you may yet need to get gifts. Iíve found this charming list of alternative type gifts for any occasion, not just our December holiday time. So take a look at these Ė they may give you ideas now and in the future. Courtesy of New American Dream at: www.newdream.org .

Gifts for Children:
1: The makings for hand puppets.
2: Box of dress up clothes.
3: Jewelry kit.
4: Upside-Down Day: Let kids set the dayís agenda (with parental supervision). Take off your watch, wear pajamas under your coat to the movies or eat dessert for breakfast.
5: Homemade Bird Feeder Kit.
6: Teach a child knitting or some other craft.
7: Write and illustrate a story with the child as the main character.

Homemade Gifts:
8: Booklet of your favorite memories related to a friend or loved one.
9: Cookbook with your favorite recipes.
10: Set up a monthly lunch date or phone call: Perfect for elderly friends or relatives.
11: Monthly care basket: Works really well for those who spend most of the year in separate places. Over the holidays send them their first basket of muffins or banana bread for January, and then each month of the year send something new to go with the theme of that month.
12: Gift of art: For grandparents, a framed picture drawn by a grandchild is the perfect present.
13: Make your own cards and send them to relatives and good friends.
14: Make your own calendar using cut-out pictures, photos, and/or drawings.

Gifts of Time:
15: Special activities with a significant other--a candlelit dinner, massage, or outdoor activity.
16: A monthly lunch date with an elderly relative or friend.
17: Gift certificates: Dinner and a movie, a home-cooked meal, a car wash, a day of babysitting, etc.
18: Reconnect with someone: Call an estranged friend or write a letter to someone you havenít seen in a few years.
19: Shovel snow for a someone, even if you remain anonymous, it will make their holiday season.

Family Gifts:
20: A jigsaw puzzle for the whole family.
21: Set up a family tournament in your favorite card game whether it is Gin Rummy, Hearts, Spades, War, Go Fish, Twenty-One, Speed, Spit, Uno, etc.
22: Tickets to a favorite cultural or sporting event.
23: A family hike, game of capture the flag, tag, or hide-and-go-seek.

Donations in the name of a Loved One:
29:Alternative gift fairs offer a chance to channel some of your holiday gift dollars to good causes, while sharing a little goodwill with others in your community. If, however, you missed the fair in your area, donít despair. Browse the Conscious Consumer Marketplace for online giving options.
30: Give a donation to a local cause such as a soup kitchen, a shelter for battered women, a local environment group, etc.
31: Give a friend a membership to a non-profit organization. JustGive.org allows you to donate online to thousands of charities.

Regifting without Guilt
32: Re-gift: Although many times the idea is misconstrued to be taken as a way to get rid of your junk, when articles in good condition are passed on it saves space in your attic and the landfill.
33: Share a love of reading: Give away the last great book you bought.
34: Shop thrift stores in your area or online.

Gift Swaps:
35: Cookie Swaps: Share recipes, go home with a variety of cookies.
36: Name Drawing: Each member of your family/group of friends buys/makes only one gift, for the name drawn from a hat.
37: White Elephant gift exchange--a great way to reuse items you aren't using yourself.


Also -- If you haven't already, please do check out our two new Forums -- where you can find and share recipes given by YOU, our visitors! You may find something new and really yummy just in time for the holidays.

We have two Forums right now, (with more coming, so stay posted):

Share Your Healthy Desserts. -- Show off your healthy desserts and recipes! Or do you want to find something new, or have a question? See our dessert Forum and what visitors are sharing.
More Healthy Snack Recipes - From You! -- More healthy snack recipes are here, submitted by YOU in our Forum! And are there ever some good ones. Add your own idea or ask a question!

Visit our web site for lots more great articles for baby boomers and seniors at www.elder-one-stop.com.

The best to you,

Mary

The Elder-Boomer Buzz comes out during the first and third weeks of the month.


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