Friday, December 2, 2016

Chronicle 63: Last Minute Gift Giving Guide

Now that the Halloween sugar high has crashed, and we've regained all our formerly lost baby weight during multiple Thanksgiving feasts, the gift giving season has officially commenced! 

Whether you're buckling down for birthdays, anniversaries, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, or Christmas... chances are you need something to give your loved ones. If you're anything like me, you want the gift to be thoughtful and unique, but you don't have the time or energy to go traipsing around a billion stores while shlepping two octopuses around. And by octopus I mean child. And by child I mean eight legged creature who grabs everything in sight.
I've gotten pretty damn good at online shopping. So leave it to me, ladies. I've done the research, logged the man hours, and waited like a teenage girl by the phone for the post man to drop off mountains of boxes. I'm pretty sure I impressed him with my ninja quickness at opening the door and snatching receiving the packages. 

Quick Shipping

If you're looking for a super quick ship, Amazon is always the way to go. I bit the bullet and signed up for Prime when I first started teaching, and I never looked back. Two day shipping, baby! And 99.9% of the time it has reached me within 1-2 days. There was one time it took a LOT longer (three days, GOD), but it was an issue with the mail carrier. 

This is literally a one stop shop. You got your toys, your books, your music, your cooking utensils, your sex toys, your rugs, your purses, and your personal nose hair groomer. I mean, everyone on the list is covered.
A very accurate depiction
What I love most about Amazon is that their prices are competitive, you don't have to fight other moms hopped up on caffeine in the toy aisle or stand in a ridiculously long checkout line, and they even offer toys without that crazy cardboard (paper cut-inducing) packaging.

Unique Gifts 

Another site I discovered this year was Uncommon Goods. They have something for pretty much every age and interest, and their shipping is FAST. I got my shipments within two days, and they were neatly packaged in a blue box with a cute little gift card tucked under the satin ribbon bow. I opted for gift wrapping, because, hello! Exhausted (which is a fancy word for lazy). 

What I really like about this site is the uniqueness of the gifts and the price ranges. You can get something for less than $25 or buy the BIG GIFT. You know, the one big gift that towers over all the other little ones? Yeah. They got it. Checked most of my extended family off the list with this site.

My favorites: a bubble wrap calendar, scotch infused toothpicks, and this cheese and crackers board which makes presentation neat and easy!

Gifts that Give Back

*BESTIE present alert!!* If you're looking for gifts that support others, check out The Shine Project. I stumbled across their profile on Instagram after falling in love with their jewelry. The story is even more amazing.
This incredible effort serves to empower women who want to better themselves through education, but may not currently have the financial means to do so. The founder, Ashley LeMieux, also works directly with their families to help better their living conditions. The Shine Project has teamed up with companies like LulaRoe to create beautiful jewelry and clothing that serves a desperate need.

There are so many other worthwhile sites that sell awesome gifts while supporting others. However, quick tip: Do some research before you commit. Some of the most recognizable or common charities actually cause more problems than good, or don't donate as much as you would think. This is the one place where spending time and energy is necessary!

OK, y'all. The holidays are a stressful time and if we can diminish that and enjoy ourselves even a little, then this post was well worth it. Kick back, grab a cocktail, and click away!

Joy, love, peace & alcohol, 

The Hot Mama

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