Martha’s Holiday Gift Guide

Okay, so I figured I’d try my hand at this whole notion of telling people what they should buy. Of course, you don’t have to listen to me or even continue reading this because I’m pretty sure we are all being bombarded with these on every social media platform. But since I really love Christmas, I thought I’d give it a shot.

As someone who wishes I could buy my family and friends everything, I have also learned that it’s not how much a gift costs but what it means to you and the person receiving it. I love giving heartfelt gifts, whether the cost is $5.00 (or less) or $100.00 (and more).

Sometimes you can’t buy gifts and that’s okay too. I’ve opted for making cookies and sending out cards because I love writing things for people and making cookies for people.

But anyway here are some ideas:

For the friend(s) you haven’t seen in forever:

Give them your time. We’re all busy. We’re all trying to make rent, bring home the dough, pay off loans, pay off all sorts of debt that we forget or put seeing friends off for awhile. Sometimes the best gift you can give is your time. Go out for a coffee, a drink, and catch up. There are tons of things you can do during the holidays in your hometowns and I’m sure your friend(s) would appreciate seeing you after some time. You might say, well that’s being stingy. But sometimes, your friend doesn’t want you mail them a gift, they want you, your conversation, your presence.

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For the tea lover:

Since I’m a major tea drinker, I had to look at things that I would like and my fellow tea drinkers would too. So I figured I’d pick two stores to shop from, to places to go for tea and online places to buy lovely things for tea.

You can’t go wrong with places like Davids Tea and Teavana which offer various assortments of regular daily tea to the delicious holiday spirit in a cup. Not only do they offer tea but various things for tea lovers such as mugs, cups, tea sets, sugars, containers, I could go on forever! You could always pick one for them, buy a tea set which has samples of various teas, or you can always buy them a gift card so that they can pick their favourite!

You can also always go out for tea. There are tons of places for high tea, low tea (haha I don’t know what I’m doing), afternoon tea, evening tea. You can even plan a tea luncheon at home for that special tea lover in your life. I mentioned some of my favourites in a previous post https://beingmaarthaa.com/2015/11/07/raincity/ ,but you can always do a quick google search and surprise your tea lover to a cute, quaint little tea shop or always gift them a gift certificate for whenever they want.

Or you could always shop for online vintage cup sets for that tea lover in your life. I would like to say that Etsy–Vintage Teacups & Tea Pots has quite the variety of amazing tea cups, sets, etc for all tea lovers. I would also look at places like Urban Outfitters and ModCloth.

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For the Booklover:

Okay, if you know what kind of books they’re into, you’re in luck cause it means you know what they’ve read, what they haven’t and you can get them that new book that they need in their life. Or you can always get them to try new things and expand their world of books. So this one is usually tricky because you might know a bibliophile–which is someone who loves books and collects them and has no room for anything else but books! (I actually have a few of these friends, you know who you are!).

So here are some ideas that you could totally do for these book lovers. Buy them a reading throw, reading socks, a mug for their drink while they read from places such as Chapters, you can always also get candles from Chapters or Urban Outfitters or even Winners which has so many varieties of candles. I usually like to gift books I get from a local charity book drive because they always have little notes inside or they’re dedicated to someone and you can add your dedication and it creates a new story and a new life for the book. I think it’s cute and dorky. If your reader uses an iPad or E-reader, you can always get them accessories for those to keep them looking stylish. You also can do what I plan to do with my friends at some point, we plan to go to all the cute old book stores and go on a book adventure and pile your baskets with books to fill your heart with lots of joy.

Again, Etsy-For Book Lovers has tons of things that are not necessarily books but book-related articles such as scarves with quotes from Jane Austen or pendants with lines from The Great Gatsby, mugs, bookmarks, bookends, etc! There’s so much online and you can also find stuff like this in stores in your area~

For the Music Lover:

Okay, so I live in a house where everyone listens and loves music. I usually go to HMV since they have a pretty good collection of albums and vinyl. I also like going to Urban Outfitters who have a larger selection and they also have Crosley Vinyl players to choose from. There are also tons of  Vinyl Record Stores in Vancouver, B.C (here’s a list of them). You can also buy them instruments, sheet music, guitar picks, accessories for their equipment, editing software, you can make them a mixtape and share music that they might not know about. Honestly, I think we should bring back making CD’s for our loved ones or mix tapes or a playlist even means something too right? You can them cute headphones, wireless speakers, books on music, books about their favourite band. You can even get them a framed album cover. Be creative!

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For the Adventurer:

A Compass from MEC! A First Aid Kit from Adventure Medical Kits! A Travellers Journal from The Journal Shop or any journal form any store works also! There’s honestly so much you can get that adventurer in your life from a GoPro, to simple gear such as gloves, clothing, camping gear to postcards for when they go places! Vintage Maps that they can hang on their walls and place pins. Guys, you can give them books on places they plan on going to! The options are endless.

For the Writer:

Okay, so there’s so much you can give a writer! I could make a whole post on this. Like the adventurer, you can buy them journals for them to document their daily activities, to their stories, to their thoughts. As someone who writes in journals constantly and who owns about 10 journals ( I had a lot more from when I was younger, but I lost tons while moving), I know the best places for journals, from Chapters, Black Bond books, to your local winners and even your school bookstore. Of course, there are places that sell pricier journals such as Sugar PaperMoleskinePaper BlanksHeartwood Gifts (Vancouver-Based Online store), Brick and Mortar Living (which is based out of New Westminster and also has a variety of other amazing things that could be gifts such as jewellery, tea cups, tea, stationary and so forth). You can even go beyond buying one and actually make one like  this one on http://hubpages.com/art/book-binding-how-to-make-a-leather-bound-moleskine-journal-craft-tutorial (wow, crazy long link). I mean, it might take forever to make it because it looks super complicated, but it would be so cool!

For the Photography Lover:

Film, Polaroids, Camera cases, frames, books on photography. There is some pretty awesome stuff on The Photojojo Store such as gadgets for phones to pocket spotlights. Etsy also has some awesome handmade gifts for photographers such as straps, accessories, clothing and jewellery that focus on the love of photography. I also know some good books that have amazing photos such as Humans of New York because I love the stories and how their photo captures that essence. I’ve heard that The Art of Photography is pretty good and there are a lot more like them. Again, Urban Outfitters caters to this also. They have some pretty cool gadgets for the photography lover in your life.

Okay, so I know I didn’t cover every type of person out there. I mean, where’s the fashionista, the social media lover, the wine lover, the car fanatic, the superhero/comic book collector, the make-up junkie, the knitter, the athlete/sports lover, the coffee drinker, and so on. There’s so much to cover and I’m pretty sure that we’d be here for days reading. These are just some things I could think of. The prices vary on all of them and that’s what I like about them.

Anyway, I hope holiday shopping is easy on all of you, remember to spread kindness and laughter. I know this wasn’t much of a guide but more of links and random photos of my Christmas decorations but hey, I’ve never really done this.

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