Believe it or not, December is almost here, (wasn't it just the 4th of July?) which means it's time for... you guessed it, Christmas shopping!
Now, if you're like me, you're probably looking forward to doing most of your shopping online this year so you don't have to fight with the lines, the crowds and the endless circles around the parking lots. There was a time when that used to be my favorite part of the season... going out to the mall and shopping while I enjoyed all the decorations, the Christmas music and the joy in the air. However, now that the decorations are up and the music is playing in mid-July and the feeling in the air is more of "I will knock you over for that last flat screen TV"... notsomuch.
But whether you shop online this year or brave the malls and stores, there's still the matter of figuring out what to get your loved ones this year. For some, it may be easy. But for others, it may be a little more challenging.
For instance, what do you get that family member who lives a minimalist lifestyle and doesn't like to keep a lot of "stuff"? Or what about your friend that eats clean and uses only non-toxic products? Or the one that loves adventure and lives their life a little "outside the lines"?
A sweater, some socks or a summer sausage gift set just won't do for these folks. So what do you get for the minimalist... the clean eater... or the bucket list live-r in your life? Check out the guide below for some great gift ideas that will have them all smiling on Christmas morning!
(Note: Some of the links in the guide below are affiliate links where I will receive a small kickback if you buy... but I only share things that I enjoy myself!)
Gift Ideas for Minimalists:
1. Gift cards
Gift cards are always a great option for those who live a simple or minimal lifestyle because they don't take up a lot of space and they are useful. Two of the main mantras that minimalists live by! We'll talk more about what gift cards are particularly great for those who eat cleanly or are knocking out their bucket lists like a rock star. But for minimalists, gift cards for experiences as opposed to stuff are always a great bet. That means things like movie theaters, restaurants or services like Groupon or Living Social. Because a lot of people living a tiny or minimal lifestyle also like to keep costs down, gift cards for useful things like grocery stores, gas stations or office supplies (for the entrepreneurs!) may seem boring at first thought, but will actually be greatly appreciated by those on the receiving end!
Again, people who live a minimalist or simple lifestyle are usually more about living than having stuff. So the gift of an experience is always a good idea - tickets to a show or a sporting event, or lessons for something they've always wanted to do like paint or ride a horse. Be creative and think outside of the box!
3. food items
Food items are always a great minimalist gift idea, but I'm not talking about your Grandma's fruitcake here. Food items that they will actually want to eat. That means paying attention to any dietary restrictions or preferences they may have (like gluten-free, sugar-free or Paleo) and giving them something they will actually enjoy!
4. your time or help
Sometimes the best gifts aren't something you can wrap up. Spending quality time with your loved one, particularly if you live far away or are always on the go, is a wonderful gift to give! You can also give the gift of service if there is something you are particularly good at or your loved one has a particular need for like a home improvement project, technical help with their computer or even help with chores, babysitting or pet-sitting. Remember, think outside of the box... anything that will make their life easier and more joyful is a good gift!
Another great gift idea for a minimalist is making a donation in their name to one of their favorite charities. Find out what they are really passionate about - animals, the homeless, domestic violence survivors, children, etc. - and then make a donation in their name OR give them money/supplies to take to the charity themselves if you want to make them a part of the experience!
Gift Ideas for Clean Eaters:
1. Gift Cards (again)
Gift cards are always a GREAT idea for clean eaters (whether they're minimalist or not) because clean eating isn't cheap! Healthy foods unfortunately cost a lot more than the toxic, packaged ones, so gift cards to healthy stores like Earth Fare, Whole Foods, Trader Joe's or a local co-op are a fantastic way to show your loved ones that you care about helping them maintain a healthy lifestyle. Vitacost.com is also a fantastic one-stop shop for healthy food AND non-toxic products, so get them a virtual gift card and make their life easier and healthier!
2. Food Delivery Services or Meal Plans
When I first started eating clean (and even now!), meal planning services and/or food delivery services were my saving grace. I was so overwhelmed with not knowing what to cook or how to make it, that I often found myself eating the same meal of grilled chicken and a sweet potato over and over. But meal planning or delivery services make it SO easy, there's nothing to worry about! If your loved one is the type of person that still enjoys cooking, but just doesn't know what to make - give them a gift subscription to a service like Prep Dish that does all the planning for you and delivers ready to go recipes and shopping lists each week. Or if they're more the type that would rather have their meals ready to go, try a healthy meal delivery service like Pre-Made Paleo (use code LIVEAFASTLIFE for 5% off!) that delivers delicious Paleo meals that only require heating and eating!
3. Fresh Herbs, Spices, Oils and Vinegars
Spices and dressings play a huge part in clean eating since they give meals a pop of flavor without adding any unwanted artificial flavorings or preservatives. Gifts of fresh herbs, seed packets, and flavored oils & vinegars are easy to find at your local healthy grocery store or in the home goods sections of stores like Marshall's and TJ Maxx and will be much appreciated by your friends and loved ones!
4. Green Pans
Eating healthy is about more than just choosing the right foods. It's also about using the right equipment and these anodized ceramic pans are non-stick and durable, but more importantly they have a Thermolon coating which contains no lead or cadmium and doesn't release any toxic fumes (like other pans!) when cooking.
5. Essential Oils and Non-Toxic Bath Products
People that eat cleanly usually like to use non-toxic products too (or at least they should!), so non-toxic bath products like this Soap Lovers Gift Pack from Indigo Wild, Organic & Natural Bath Bombs Gift Set from Beauty by Earth or this Shimmer & Shine Gift Set from Beautycounter make great gift options. Or why not get your loved one started on essential oils (which can be used for a wide range of natural remedies and homemade products!) with this Introductory Kit from doTERRA or this Everyday Essentials Collection from Young Living.
Gifts for Bucket List Live-rs:
1. Groupon or Living Social Gift Cards
Groupon and Living Social deals are an excellent way to mark things off your bucket list for cheap! They've got deals on lessons, trips, classes and more. So give your "bucket list living" friends a virtual gift card and give them an adventure this year!
2. Lessons or Courses
Help your friend or family member gain that skill or knowledge that they've always wanted to have like photography, playing guitar or learning a foreign language. Pay for a course at a local community college, museum or gallery. Or purchase a gift certificate from a local company where they can choose what they want to sign up for.
3. Trips or Travel
Bucket list live-rs love to travel and see the world, so anything that helps them get on their way is a great gift idea! Sure, you might not be able to buy them an all-expense paid trip to Paris, but you can get them one night's stay at a quaint local B&B or give them an AirBnB gift card and let them decide where they want to go! Or check out Groupon Getaways for more great deals on travel and quick getaways!
4. A Quality Journal
One of the best parts of bucket list living is capturing the memories as you go along, so you can look back on them later. But don't let your loved one save those precious memories in a plain old spiral notebook when they can use a beautiful leather journal like this instead!
5. A Nice Camera
Most of us use the cameras on our phones to snap pictures these days, but when you're trying to capture the beauty of the Grand Canyon or the majesty of the Eiffel Tower, a smartphone just won't do. If your friends or family members are actually out there doing it - achieving their dreams and making their bucket list happen - they're going to want to remember every detail. So help them do just that with a quality camera like this Nikon COOLPIX that comes with all the accessories they'll need including a tripod, memory card and travel case!
Remember, when it comes down to it, the best present of all is love. So whether you're shopping for a minimalist, a clean eater, a bucket list live-r or all of the above... make sure you do it all with LOVE!
Until next time, keep your worries tiny and your dreams BIG!