Let's discuss awesome christmas present ideas!

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by .Andy, Nov 26, 2007.

  1. .Andy macrumors 68030

    .Andy

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2004
    Location:
    The Mergui Archipelago
    #1
    Material consumerism thread ahead, not for discussing the finer points and origins of christmas!

    I think I usually buy pretty reasonable presents for people. On large people enjoy my gifts, although I'd readily admit this is more due to the fact that I'm a horribly self-absorbed lazy person that leaves buying gifts to the last minute and thus spends far too much money. This year it is different. I want to get in early and partially offset cost with creativity. Not entirely because I'm a cheap-ass (I am a student) but also because I realise that extravagance sometimes embarrasses people, and some feel obliged to spend reciprocally :eek:. I think most people also enjoy getting thoughtful rather than expensive gifts.

    This is where I was hoping that you guys would come in. Instead of just being for my benefit, I was wondering if people would be interested in sharing awesome gift ideas they've given, received, and conjured up. For the benefit of the thread and our finances perhaps can we try to work by an absolute upper limit of $US50. Bonus credit for personal handiwork :)! Minus points for gift vouchers to music retailers :p.

    My thoughts so far.......

    A Wollemi Pine
    This one is perfect for the green thumb recipient. It's an ancient relic with a fascinating story of apparent extinction and re-discovery of a single, secluded, and secret stand in a national park in australia. In the ground it does grow quite large (40 meters large!), but it will also grow spectacularly in pots and can be pruned to keep small. It comes in at around $AU44.95 and is available from http://www.wollemipine.com/. Retail garden centres also regularly have them in stock much cheaper. It does appear to be more expensive in the UK and US but worth checking out in retail stores.
    [​IMG]
    There is also a great little book available that documents the rediscovery of this plant and the propagation efforts to save it. A slice of every sale also go to the preservation of the species.

    Composting Worm Farm
    A good gift for the horticultural/environmentalist/fisherman. Worm farms are great at knocking down kitchen scraps into useable compost. The farms are an ingenious set up of ever-rotating trays that compost incredibly fast, leaving you with both top quality worm-casting compost and an organic liquid fertiliser in the bottom tray. They are made from recyclable plastic and are fly proof (unless you leave the lid off!). At around $US50 they are at the top end of the price scale. For the Aussies the best place to pick these up is your local council chambers.
    [​IMG]
    The farm uses a special kind of extra-veracious red tiger worm (normal earthworms won't work) that are available to buy separately. These will not survive outside the farm as they starve to death under normal conditions. These come in between $US10-20 so this is a good gift for mother/father combo etc. One half gets the worms (mother-in-law ;)), the other half gets the farm! As I mentioned above they are also great for fishing or feeding your exotic pets. A gift that truely keeps on giving :D.

    An iced tea jug
    Hear me out! This might seem a little uninspired but in the southern hemisphere it's just kicking into summer. That means that it is insanely hot, hot, hot. A nice iced tea jug is something that the recipient (mother, father, girlfriend, boyfriend, grandparents, work colleagues etc) can use over the course of summer and be reminded of you every time they escape the heat with a long, cool iced tea and a good book.
    [​IMG]
    It comes in at a RRP of $AU24.95 which leaves plenty in the budget to bulk out a reasonable hamper with some exotic specialty teas, fresh berries, a small pot of mint, and a bottle of spiced rum or vodka for decadence. More appealing than you thought isn't it :p!

    Cook for people
    This one takes a little bit of thought and pre-planning although christmas recipes really aren't that difficult. Cooking is also really cheap although does take an investment in time. But nothing's more christmassy than rich, sweet foods. Some good ideas that are great fun to make are gingerbread houses (especially for kids), fruit mince pies, and for those feeling adventurous christmas puddings. There are plenty of free recipes online to help you out. Of these the old gingerbread house is a great one and a personal favorite of mine;
    [​IMG]
    Gingerbread is a cinch to make and with a little white icing, food colouring, mixed sweets, and creativity in a short time you can knock up something that looks extremely extravagant that the recipient will be picking at and pulling apart for days. Nothing is as sweet as knocking up one of these for you significant other or kids. Especially given the ability to personalise it.

    That's about it for me except for a quick mention of charity gifts. I've not done this before but received one last year and was chuffed. Lots of charity's do it where you can sponsor a gift for a village in an underdeveloped country (i.e. mosquito nets), and give a card to your recipient telling them that you've bought them something for someone needy. This is great for the socially responsible person that has everything. I appreciated it anyway :).

    So it's your turn. What inspirational gift ideas have you got to share to broaden the collective giving spirit?
     
  2. Jasonbot macrumors 68020

    Jasonbot

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2006
    Location:
    The Rainbow Nation RSA
    #2
    Leopard T-Shirts I'm buying. Then there's um, no the coolness ends there
     
  3. xodonniedarko macrumors 6502

    xodonniedarko

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2007
    Location:
    North Carolina
    #3
    Starbucks actually has a whole line of gifts. There's little arrangements, like a 'to go cup' with some coffee, or a package of biscotti, ect ect. You can check it out at starbucks.com

    For the newly wed couples, there's always the option of gift cards to place such as Sears, JC Penny's, Khol's, Hobby Lobby, or the favorites - Lowe's and Home Depot!
    And Wal Mart, Target, and Belk's.
    [​IMG]

    An easy, cheap gift for any gender? Leather gloves!
    They can run anywhere from $10-$100. I bought them for a friend one year - she loved them! They're sold everywhere. [​IMG]

    For the 'just moved out' people, try a simple idea.
    Glass coasters, laundry baskets + hangers, a bag bag (you know, for the plastic grocery bags), a nice coat hanger to put by the door, re-chargeable batteries + charger(for tv remotes, or whatever), a set of white towels, some kind of doo-dad from Belk's....

    :] I never knew I had so many ideas!

    Don't forget:
    ipod/iphone cases
    laptop bags
    your (or their!) favorite cd or movie
    bath and body kits
    robes or slippers
    cute notebooks + nice pen
    a nice calendar or calendar book
     
  4. Fuzzy14 macrumors 65816

    Fuzzy14

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2006
    Location:
    Renfrew, Scotland
    #4
    Bought the wife a pair of skis a couple of years ago. Didn't go down well, she was pregnant at the time. Same year, mother in law bought her alcohol (can't drink) and bath salts (shower only in the new house.) Pretty disappointing all round really...

    Got her a Nintendo DS this year.
     
  5. gauchogolfer macrumors 603

    gauchogolfer

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2005
    Location:
    American Riviera
    #5
    Good idea for a thread...I'll be checking out everyone's good ideas.
     
  6. twoodcc macrumors P6

    twoodcc

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2005
    Location:
    Right side of wrong
    #6
    yeah me too. i don't know what i'm getting my girlfriend yet
     
  7. Fuzzy14 macrumors 65816

    Fuzzy14

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2006
    Location:
    Renfrew, Scotland
    #7
    I've got a pair of skis if you're interested.... unused! :D
     
  8. todd2000 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2005
    Location:
    Danville, VA
    #8
    If your handy, how about building something for someone? I just finished 2 radiator covers for a friend who just moved into a new apartment. Mind you the last time I built something was in High School shop class about 9 years ago, but I think they came out nice If I do say so my-self :)

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Just need some sanding and a coat of paint and they are done
     
  9. .Andy thread starter macrumors 68030

    .Andy

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2004
    Location:
    The Mergui Archipelago
    #9
    Damn they are very nice. Great work. May I ask what joints you used?
     
  10. Markleshark macrumors 603

    Markleshark

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2006
    Location:
    Carlisle, Up Norf!
    #10
    I ask people what they want. Can't twine if it's wrong then.
     
  11. twoodcc macrumors P6

    twoodcc

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2005
    Location:
    Right side of wrong
    #11
    haha. actually i would, but she bought us some skis at a garage sale a few years ago. :)
     
  12. todd2000 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2005
    Location:
    Danville, VA
    #12
    Thank you :) As for the joints, I used a combination of mending plates, and L-Brackets, nothing fancy, since I don't have many tools to work with. Heres a picture of the inner workings so to speak :) The slats are just held on with some wood glue, and nails.

    [​IMG]
     
  13. furcalchick macrumors 68020

    furcalchick

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2006
    Location:
    South Florida
    #13
    i'm going to get a new desk for the family room from ikea sometime soon (the old one doesn't really fit), and get a new sofa seeing as one of the old ones broke. it will greatly improve the look of the room that needs to be out of a time warp somewhat.
     
  14. Mr.Noisy macrumors 65816

    Mr.Noisy

    Joined:
    May 5, 2007
    Location:
    UK™
    #14
    Personally, i would love a Barrett M82 rifle, but hey we can only dream, other wise a Saab 9-3 2.0 ltr turbo will suffice, after all the things i did to make my wife's dream come true, she is now a teacher.
     
  15. Daveman Deluxe macrumors 68000

    Daveman Deluxe

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2003
    Location:
    Corvallis, Oregon
    #15
    I got this for a friend of mine who seems perpetually short on time.

    [​IMG]
     
  16. letsgorangers macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2006
    Location:
    TN
    #16
  17. Leareth macrumors 68000

    Leareth

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2004
    Location:
    Vancouver
    #17
    Thats a perfect gift for someone I know - where did you get it?
     
  18. Daveman Deluxe macrumors 68000

    Daveman Deluxe

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2003
    Location:
    Corvallis, Oregon
    #18
    Leareth: I recommend searching for "whatever clock" on froogle.com.
     
  19. nbs2 macrumors 68030

    nbs2

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2004
    Location:
    A geographical oddity
    #19
    But this site is even better for people who love to bake and love animals and want to combine the two. :D

    If they don't live near Maryland I'd suggest a big ol' can of Old Bay:
     

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  20. letsgorangers macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2006
    Location:
    TN
    #20
    I figured a remark like that was due ;) RE: Old Bay, I live in TN and I can get it!
     
  21. ravenvii macrumors 604

    ravenvii

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    Mar 17, 2004
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    Melenkurion Skyweir
    #21
    LOL, where did you get that?
     
  22. rdowns macrumors Penryn

    rdowns

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2003
    #22
    I recommend searching for "whatever clock" on froogle.com.
     
  23. nbs2 macrumors 68030

    nbs2

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2004
    Location:
    A geographical oddity
    #23
    Yeah, I've seen it around - but I've never seen it in a pantry unless the person has some tie to the MD area. I'm sure that years ago Tabasco was in the same situation. The difference is that Ol' Bay just doesn't get publicity unless someone is trying to pass off a crap crabcake recipe as "authentic MD crabcakes" by dumping on too much seasoning and hoping people don't notice.
     
  24. Daveman Deluxe macrumors 68000

    Daveman Deluxe

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2003
    Location:
    Corvallis, Oregon
    #24
    My family's from Oregon and we use Old Bay on a wide variety of things. :)
     
  25. njmac macrumors 68000

    njmac

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    #25

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