But what about the nine girls you work with? Your boyfriend's three sisters? Your 18 first degree cousins on your mom's side? Your friendly neighbor? What do you give them?
Well, fret not, dear readers. I have some gift suggestions for you.
A container of cookies, a package of brownies, a jar of homemade jam, a box of cupcakes. It's up to you.
It's good to support local businesses. It's healthy and environment-friendly (because when you buy locally, nothing has to be shipped from somewhere far away saving fuel and other resources) to patronize entrepreneurs in your neighborhood. Gifting food makes people happy, and what I love most about giving it as a gift is that it is meant to be shared. And you don't have to think about the gender of the recipient! It's also a gift for an entire family and not just one person. My dad's office gives away gift baskets full of grocery items to their associates. Last year, we gave our neighbors boxes of Krispy Kreme doughnuts. I'll buy local this year.
photo from wikipedia.en
Books, for me, are extremely personal gifts. I like receiving them myself.
They can be tricky to give because if you have friends who read a lot - I'm talking about you, Alveel, Belle, Niko and Arvy - then you'll need a bit of research to find out what they have and don't have yet. The Husband, when he gave me Koushun Takami's Battle Royale for my birthday had to conspire with my good friend, Alveel. I found their text messages to each other on his phone weeks after. If you're giving a book to someone this Christmas, it's recommended that you do a bit of sleuthing first. Books are such an amazing gift. And yes, it's okay to give second-hand.
photo from revolutionbooksnyc.org
A good tip would be to give them a gift card to a their favorite book store. It's an awesome no-fail plan. My favorite book stores are Fullybooked and La Belle Aurore. I also like going to Book Sale.
3. grooming and beauty stuff
Bottles of cologne, pretty pots of lip balm, jeweled compact mirrors, tubes of lip gloss, nail polish, colorful packs of hair elastics or clips... The possibilities are endless! Forever 21, Bench, Accessorize and the SM Department Store's accessories section are treasure troves!
photo from dreamclassy.wordpress.com
photo from buymebeauty.com
photo from moodierepot.com
photo from rawlifecoaching.com
A girl can never have too many so accessories so these make great presents.
photo from wellpal7.blogspot.com
photo from yourshoppingbag.multiply.com
5. gadget cases, passport holders, bags, satchels and pouches
What girl doesn't like them? If you're crafty, then you can make them yourself. It's an extremely sweet gesture. There are a lot of local stores that handcraft and sell these. The quality is really good too.
photo from ohmysocute.com
photo from madbeautiful.blogspot.com
photo from allwomensweekend.com
photo from glitterandpearls.com
6. journals and planners
My friend, Graeco, gave me a journal from New York. I haven't used it yet. I really like receiving them and I also like giving them. My bridesmaids' gifts were red leather bound journals with a heart cutout on the cover.
photo from destinationunknownjournals.com
photo from dawnmcvey.typepad.com
7. a donation to a cause or a charity in the recipient's name
This is a great gift for the elderly who tell you they 'don't really want anything for Christmas.' You can give them a Christmas card with a note that tells them a donation has been made in their name. It's such a thoughtful present.
To a gig, a show, a movie... You're the boss. In our office, movie passes are given out all the time. The Husband and I sometimes get so many - the most we had at one time was eleven - that we give them away. This is a good gift for your household help. Give her two so she can bring her friend. Tell her the latest John Lloyd-Bea starrer is on you.
photo from 3on3forniebs.com
9. gift certificates
To the gym, the spa, to a store, to a restaurant... GCs are so fun to give. My friend and co-worker, Ann, surprised me with one to SM and I was really psyched. I bought a black peplum skirt.
Nothing beats spending time with your family and friends and co-workers. My friends and co-workers and I have yearly Christmas dinners.
L-R: Nicole, Arvy and me
L-R: George, me, Arvy
Christmas holidays at my grandparents' farm in Iloilo with 1/3 of my cousins
Christmas with the boys, Dan and Graeco
'Tis the season, indeed!