Christmas is a time for giving and receiving, but we’ve all had that awkward moment when someone has given us a present unexpectedly and we’ve had nothing to give them in return.
Well, that awkwardness is now over.
We’ve put together a list of the best things that you can keep around at Christmas time, in your car or hidden in the house, for the moments that someone gives you an unexpected pressie. Enjoy the Christmas season without worries, we’ve got you covered!
1. Christmas Cards
It’s always good to have Christmas cards on you around the holiday season, because even when someone doesn’t give you a present, they’re almost sure to give you a card. Do yourself a favour and buy a big pack of Christmas cards and on the inside write your little Christmas message and sign your name. Just leave a blank space where the other person’s name should go. Keep some cards in your handbag or in our car’s glovebox and when someone gives you a card just say “Oh let me grab yours” and then quickly write their name in. Foolproof!
2. Mason Jar Treats
There are so many things you can do with mason jars, and if you’re looking for inspiration, pinterest is the place to go. We love the mason jar recipes, which involve putting the raw ingredients (dry) into a mason jar with instructions on what can be made.
You can do this with cookies, or even with a Christmas hot chocolate. Yum! Of course you can’t go wrong with mason jar treats, which basically involve putting some of your favourite treats in a jar, whacking some ribbon on top, and handing it off to whoever it’s going to.
Extra points if you find Christmas coloured treats, or you take some time to give the outside of the jar a little decorating as well. If you’re looking for the jars, you’ll find them in your own recycling bin (wash thoroughly) or at dollar stores.
3. Boxed Chocolates
If you can’t be bothered to put things in mason jars, just grab a few boxes of chocolates to hand out when people give you a gift.
Not everyone is a fan of chocolate, especially if they’re trying to keep fit, but it’s the thought that counts.
Try and avoid really cheap chocolates, and instead, see if you can get a deal on buying several boxes. Wrap them in wrapping paper and have them ready to go in the fridge/cupboard for when company comes a calling.
4. Coffee & Choccies
Another take on the chocolate gift is coffee & chocolates.
For this gift, you’ll need a few nice travel mugs (you can grab them cheap at Kmart and similar stores) and some of those Christmas Roses or Favourites.
Simply unpack the mug from its packaging, fill it with chocolates, and then repackage and wrap. It’s ready to go. You can do the same thing with some fancy tea bags and a few little packet of biscuits. Remember, it’s all about presentation!
5. Homemade Scrubs
It’s always nice to get something different at Christmas time, and it doesn’t get much more different than a homemade skin scrub. There are an endless number of recipes for this online, but most are very straight forward and even use things that you already have in your house.
We’d recommend making a big batch of these up at a time, preferably with a well-liked scent such as orange or coconut. Sugar scrubs are one of the easiest to make, with brown sugar, some kind of oil, and the fragrance or flavour. They can do wonders for the skin, and are a very thoughtful gift.
6. Little Vouchers
You don’t want to spend lots of money on vouchers for people, but you can still give a nice little gift in the form of a voucher this Christmas. Instead of big vouchers for Kmart or Target, buy a $10 or $15 voucher for a coffee shop near you. A chain is preferable, because it provides more opportunity to use your gift.
Invest in a few of these and they make great standby gifts, easy to slip into Christmas cards at a moment’s notice.
Plus, if you don’t give them away over Christmas, you can use them yourself!
7. Adult Colouring Sets
Adult colouring is the new thing to do at the moment, so move over kids!
This Christmas, you can ignite your friend’s imagination by gifting them a few pencils or pens and some adult colouring pages. It’s quite easy to find adult colouring printable online, and once printed you can simply roll them up, put some pencils inside, wrap them with ribbon and hand them out. They’re a thoughtful little gift that’s sure to make even unexpected present givers smile.
We’ve left wine until last because it’s hardly a new standby gift. Many households keep a few bottles of wine on hand for any occasion throughout the year where a gift might be required, and Christmas is no different. You can look at online suppliers and usually pick up a very cheap deal on wine when you buy it by the half dozen or dozen bottles, so that’s where to start.
Invest equally in reds and whites, and have them ready to go with a bit of Christmas wrapping (like a ribbon) and a little card (blank until it’s needed). Simple!
What kind of simple gifts do you have reserved over Christmas…just in case?