The holiday season and gift giving will soon be upon us. This year many of us will be looking for inexpensive but meaningful ways we can express our love for family and friends. The gift ideas I’m suggesting will cost little or nothing but they will involve some investment of your time. Have fun!
- A Memory Box or Jar. Find a medium size jar that has a large enough opening that you can put your hand into it. If you can’t find a jar, get a small box that you can cover in attractive gift wrap. Now find some different colored sheets of writing paper and cut them into 3×5 inch rectangles. Make sure you have a varied assortment of colors. On each piece of paper write a brief, happy and memorable event that you and your gift recipient shared. Fold the paper in half and drop it into your container. Keep going until you’ve almost filled the jar or box. Tie a large ribbon around the container and add a tag that says either “Memory Jar” or “Memory Box”.
- A Gratitude Letter. Draft a letter of gratitude to someone who is special in your life. Be specific. If you’re grateful for a friend’s thoughtfulness, then not only say that but also give examples when the thoughtfulness made a difference in your life. It’s really important that you not use vague sentiments like “I’m grateful for your love”. Instead, write about all the ways that their love is manifested. Once you have a draft that you’re happy with, get a couple of sheets of good quality writing paper. Now using pen and ink, transfer your draft to the good paper. Even if your writing looks like chicken scratches, it’s important that it be handwritten because it personalizes your letter. Once completed, roll the letter up and tie a beautiful ribbon around it.
- A Photo Sorting Certificate. Go to your computer and make up a gift certificate or have a friend make up one for you. You could also do one by hand on a good piece of paper. Write something like the following: This certificate entitles the bearer to use the services of ____(Add your name)___to sort and organize a photo collection. This could be quite a large project involving a considerable amount of your time, so be cautious. Only offer this if you know you can afford the time.
That’s it. Do you have some no cost or low cost gift ideas you could share? I’m thinking specifically of gifts that relate to life stories and personal histories. I’d love to hear from you.
Photo by Saquan Stimpson
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