It’s been awhile since I did a personal blog and as my gift to you this Christmas I’m writing a holiday-themed blog. The time I’ve spent working on this writing is vastly more priceless than any store-bought present. In fact, this list of Last Minute Christmas Gifts will cost you virtually nothing but your time and a heart brimming with the joy of giving to others.
Much like a cat who sleeps, eats, chases a ball of yarn, and scratches your arm, this list is in no apparent order.
- Season’s Eatings– For that hard to shop for chef in your life, I recommend wrapping up classic food staples they can apply to virtually any recipe. Walk into any fast food joint with the focus and concentration of a tightrope walker. Head immediately to the condiments and while you’re there, pick up a few napkins too. How to wrap: Place inside a sandwich bag or one of your socks that you can’t find a match for. Tape, staple, or glue onto a mantle or hang from a tree. Any tree will do, just make sure the recipient has directions to said tree.
- A Taste of Christmas- How are you going to be able to eat holiday treats and dinners without silverware? Why would you want to do any dishes on Christmas? Problem solved: While you’re picking up salt and ketchup packets, pick up some plastic sporks, spoons, and forks to help set the table for family and friends. Who doesn’t like to eat? How to wrap: Look for individually wrapped utensils. Bonus points if you can find the gift set with salt and pepper packets AND a napkin.
- For the Book Lover in Your Life- Head to the library. Pick up a flyer or brochure of the library’s special events and/or services offered at the library. Fold in half, then fold in half again. Write gift recipient’s name on the front. If inclined, scrawl something witty on it, such as “A million books for you because you’re worth a million to me!”
- Playing Santa- In an Oregon mall they had a Hipster Santa, who wore a flannel shirt instead of the traditional red jacket with white fur trim. (Is it real fur? Where’s PETA on this?) It’s scientific fact that a child who is paid a personal visit by Santa saves you over $50 dollars on taking photos with Santa at the mall. Kids who get home visits from Santa are two-times more likely to graduate from high school and four-times more likely to open the door to strangers who resemble Santa. Help build your child’s confidence and trust in old bearded white men by dressing up as Santa and asking your kids, or friends’ kids, or any kid you want, what they want for Christmas. Sleep restlessly after a night of heavy drinking at the thought of having lied to several kids, promising them X-boxes and bicycles and ponies you know damn well they are not getting. Live a life of regret and shame. Repeat.
- Make the Practical Magical- Ever see those rolls of wrapped toilet paper sitting invitingly on toilet tanks in some diners? Those are like hotel shampoos (also a great gift!) and they are there for you to stuff into your oversized purse or man-bag. Nothing is worse than having a houseful of guests, the halls decked, the goose cooked on the table, the egg nog spiked with cheap rum, than forgetting to have stocked up on toilet paper. Give your host or hostess of your family party something to tear up about. Those are tears of joy. And toilet tissue can dry those tears as well. Also, they make great tree-toppers. If already wrapped, no need to wrap it at all. Also, makes a great flammable garland.
With these great last minute gift ideas, you won’t break the bank but you will break free the embarrassment of picking out a pricy gift that will end up tossed into the back of a closet, re-gifted or otherwise unwanted.
While I’m here, I also want to offer some unsolicited advice about writing gift tags. Nothing is worse than an eight year old child finding a present under the tree from Santa who spelled their name wrong. Blame the wrappers at Macy’s all you want, but this is a sin against Christmas. How to explain to the bewildered child, visibly upset that Santa forgot how to spell their name? Blame it on a young elf who’s bad at spelling. Whatever you do, don’t take the blame for being drunk on Christmas Eve and shakily struggling to write legibly on the gift tags. (If this is the case, try writing To You, From Santa. Sort out whose gifts are whose after the resulting fighting over the only Fire Sauce packet from Taco Bell.)