It happens to the best of us. Despite being bombarded with daily gift ideas from the Canadian Gift Guide, you still forget someone on your list. Perhaps your budget is tapped out, maybe you’re running short on time, or maybe they just aren’t priority numero uno (or dos) on your shopping list. Whatever the case, if you’re sorta kinda scrambling to find a little trinket to say thanks, or I like you, or you’re the best, but you don’t want to blow the bank, may I recommend stockpiling a few of these items now so when the unexpected gift exchange occurs you can simply nip into your stores and blow them away? Great! As always, ideas do not include shipping.
PC Chalkboard Mug with Cookie Cutter & Stencil – $5 @ Loblaws
Three items for a fiver? Crazy deal, and perfect for the teacher or after school activity leader in your child’s life that you want to make a good impression on before the year’s out. Bake some cookies, make a cup of hot cocoa, and use the included stencil to draw a pretty snowflake design on your mug.
Katana Chopsticks – $7 @ Front and Company
You’re heading over to a holiday dinner party and yipes, you’ve forgotten to pick up a little token of thanks. Even the closest of hosts will appreciate a gift, like these fun katana knife chopsticks, a la The Walking Dead’s Michonne. Only you know, not for zombies.
Holiday Traditions Tiny Treats Set – $8 @ Bath and Body Works
Your babysitter has been a serious lifesaver this season – so why not slip her a little something extra the night you head out to your corporate Christmas party? This trio of pint-sized lotions in Bath and Body Works’ signature festive scents will bring out the holiday spirit in anyone.
Cat Whack A Mole – $9.99 @ ThinkGeek
First off, why don’t I own this? Second off, if a kindly neighbour (and cat lover) has been picking up your mail while you’ve been away for the holidays, thank them with this cute gift that’ll get their cat goin’ crazy and their faces smiling brightly.
Yo-Yo Set – $10 @ Bodum
Your friend’s coming over for a catch-up sesh…and she springs a gift on you. This two-piece looseleaf tea set for one is a total lifesaver – plus it comes in five cheerful colours that coordinate with the rest of the Bodum line.
Bicycle Ghost Deck – $6.95 @ Amazon.ca
“How was I supposed to know he was bringing me a gift?” your husband bemoans in the kitchen. It’s a fair issue – most guys don’t exchange pressies. But if a gentleman comes calling with a gift in hand, be prepared to play a hand with him via these nifty knockout white-on-black playing cards. Perfect for pals that already have a weekly poker showdown going.
SEPHORA Collection Lollipop Lip Gloss – $9 @ Sephora
This is one of those gifts where the packaging really makes it more substantial than it might otherwise be perceived. A cute microphone-shape wand untwists to reveal a universally flattering sparkly pink lip shine. A sweet choice for when an out-of-town friend pops by that you didn’t think you were going to get to see over the holidays.
Instapic Mini Frames – $10 each @ Umbra
Your sibling has enforced a gift on behalf of your niece and / or nephew. The problem? You had no idea you were “exchanging” gifts. Save the day with one of these petite frames that emulates the vintage tech the sun-faded look of Instagram’s filters are meant to replicated.
Cheers for Deers Beverage Sleeve – $9.99 @ ModCloth
Your and your roommate, well, you’re not really the type to buy each other gifts (especially after he failed to put his dirty dishes in the dishwasher). But then, a gift arrives outside of your door. You feel bad. You haul out this clever and quirky beer holder. You open a couple of brewskis and toast to the holidays. All is forgiven.
Woods Sticky Notes – $7.99 @ Animi Causa
The office is recruiting you for some sort of Yankee gift swap. The only rules? Gender neutral and under $10. This ombre-shaded notepad fits the bill, especially because you can use it to ‘plant thoughts’ while your coworker is away at lunch.
No giveaway on this one folks (if you’re devastated, you’re too spoiled!) But if you’d like to earn a bonus entry into this month’s Latika Soap giveaway, simply leave a comment below telling me which of these fab lifesavers you’d most like to gift (or get).