I don’t know who originally wrote the piece about innovative gift giving ideas, But my thought is that whoever wrote a piece full of such great ideas, would be the kind of person who would like to have it shared by any means available. So, here you have it.
Not only are these great ideas, but they also solve some problems that plague many a gift giver: I.E. size, color, fit, . . .the dreaded shipping and the even more dreaded gift wrapping. Well, and most important, does the recipient REALLY want what you are giving. To top it all off, these ideas support our local community and business people. Now THERE’S some pretty compelling reasons.
There is no longer an excuse that, at gift giving time, nothing can be found that is produced by American hands. Yes there is! It’s time to think outside the (gift) box, people. Who says a gift needs to fit in a shirt box, wrapped in wrapping paper?
So, take these ideas and run with them . . . add some of your own ideas . . . and have fun!!
Everyone — yes EVERYONE gets their hair cut. How about gift certificates from your local hair salon or barber?
Gym membership? It’s appropriate for all ages. Anyone who is thinking about some health improvement.
Who wouldn’t appreciate getting their car detailed? Small, locally owned detail shops and car washes would love to sell you a gift certificate or a book of gift certificates.
Are you one of those extravagant givers who think nothing of plunking down the Benjamins on a flat-screen? Perhaps that grateful gift receiver would like his driveway sealed, or lawn mowed for the summer, or driveway plowed all winter, or games at the local golf course.
There are a bazillion owner-run restaurants — all offering gift certificates. And, if your intended isn’t the fancy eatery sort, what about a half dozen breakfasts at the local breakfast joint. Remember, folks this isn’t about big National chains — this is about supporting your home town Americans with their financial lives on the line to keep their doors open.
How many people couldn’t use an oil change for their car, truck or motorcycle, done at a shop run by the local working guy?
Thinking about a heartfelt gift for mom? Mom would LOVE the services of a local cleaning lady for a day.
My computer could use a tune-up, and I KNOW I can find some young guy who is struggling to get his repair business up and running. Here in Redding we have Nerds on Call, a locally started company that is expanding.
OK, you were looking for something more personal. Local crafts people spin their own wool and knit them into scarves. They make jewelry, and pottery and beautiful wooden boxes. Check out the local farmer’s markets.
Also the North Valley Art League (housed in the old Carter House facility in Lake Redding Park) shows many arts and crafts items from their members.
Plan your holiday outings at local, owner-operated restaurants and leave your server a nice tip. And, how about going out to see a locally produced play or ballet or concert at your hometown theatre.
There’s always wine tasting and/or olive oil tasting in the nearby hills. A gift certificate for dinner and a tasting to include a bottle of wine. Who wouldn’t love that??
Musicians need love too, so find a venue showcasing local bands and leave them a healthy tip. Remember, whatever you leave has to be divvied up between all the musicians on stage.
Honestly, people, do you REALLY need to buy another ten thousand foreign made lights for the house? When you buy a five dollar string of light, about fifty cents stays in the community. If you have those kinds of bucks to burn, leave the mailman, trash guy or babysitter a nice BIG tip.
So, lets see what we can share of and with our community this year by encouraging local American small businesses to keep plugging away to follow their dreams. And, when we care about our local business people, we care about our communities, and the benefits come back to us in ways we couldn’t imagine. I think that THIS would make a great new Christmas tradition. . . or maybe even a grat year ‘round tradition.
Adrienne Jacoby is a 40-plus-year resident of Shasta County and native-born Californian. She was a teacher of vocal music in the Enterprise Schools for 27 years and has been retired for 11 years.
A musician all her life, she was married to the late Bill Jacoby with whom she formed a locally well -known musical group who prided themselves in playing for weddings, wakes, riots, bar mitzvas and super market openings. And, oh yes . . . she has two children, J’Anna and Jayson.