With the holidays approaching, I was overwhelmed by all the things I could write about regarding gift wrapping. So, I am scaling it down to a mini-series called "A Gifted Christmas" to keep track of my own Christmas gift-wrapping preparations. I hope you'll join me along the way! For more, click the "Christmas" link in the right-hand column.
Since you can't plan your gift wrapping if you don't know what you're giving, some of the first posts in this series are about how to brainstorm gifts for your loved ones. In three parts, here are some of the ways I approach thinking of gifts for friends and family.
3) Consider buying local. With the ubiquity of national chains, regionally-specific gifts can be a nice reminder of the diversity of our fair country. My parents-in-law sent us to Seattle with a jar of blueberry-jalapeno jam from the Iowa City farmers' market (yes, from the very stall pictured above), and my parents loved it.
4) Share something you love. While this won't work for every gift recipient, sometimes you find something you absolutely love and want to share. Even though we live in Southern California, G. and I live in Smartwool socks in the winter. (Thanks, Mom, for introducing me to these!) We love these socks.
True story: my mom left a pair of her Smartwool socks at my grandparents' house. When he found them, my grandfather tried them on and liked them. He liked them so much that he went online and Googled a store to order more from (pretty impressive, Jiichan!). On the phone with my mom, he told her he started doing the laundry so he could wear them again the next day. My Baachan said, shocked, "What! I wondered why you were doing the laundry!"
At the risk of being dorky, we got three pairs each for our aunt and brother-in-law for last year's gift exchange in Iowa. I think they got some good use in the harsh winter weather!
Have you bought local or shared something you love as a gift recently? Share your stories in the comments!