The Best Gifts for the Holidays

November 30th, 2007

It’s not even December yet, and already my in-box is clogged with solicitations from toy makers, clothing retailers, and seemingly just about everyone selling anything!

This year, more than ever before, parents are concerned about buying safe presents for their children. And increasingly, they’re concerned about the environment too.

This is one reason experiential gifts are a good idea. Experiential gifts are gifts of experiences. They’re not plastic, they’re not lead and they’re not breakable! What they are is memorable.

When I was a young girl, I gave my father a book of coupons I made. I colored each of 10 coupons and bound them into a little pink package. Inside were pages redeemable for a mix of chores and sweet nothings: a hug, a car wash, a home made dinner or cookies, and more. Of course it’s been 30 years or so since I gave my father that book, and I’ve forgotten all that was in it. In fact, I thought he had forgotten it too, because oddly enough, he never redeemed the coupons. Periodically I would ask him about it, and he would just laugh a little and smile, then change the topic. It wasn’t until after he died years later that I found the coupon book. It was carefully wrapped and laid in a file with my name on it, next to childhood drawings and photos.

I still think the coupon book is a great holiday gift idea. Clearly, my father cherished it, even if he never did redeem those coupons! A markedly more upscale version of my coupon book is available through  Excitations, a company focused on “gift experiences.” The Parent Bloggers Network asked me to blog about Excitations, which ironically I was planning to do anyway since they have a store nearby at DC’s Union Station.

Excitations offers a variety of experiences, including “green experiences.” You can do such things as dine at an organic farm restaurant, take a guided bike tour around the city, sail down a river on a schooner, or even learn archery. Check it out!

Copyright Organicmania 2007