Holiday Gift Guide: 2018

Holidays can be stressful (for many reasons), but most commonly when it comes to gift giving.  It’s easy to become quickly frustrated when getting ready for Christmas.  Who do you buy gifts for?  How much do you spend (I still have not figured out the answer to this question)?  What does everyone want?  How do I find something people will actually use/like/not re-gift to someone else next year?  Sometimes it can be hard to buy clothes, because you don’t always know sizes or how things are going to fit.  It can even be hard to buy scented things like candles or cologne, because everyone has different taste.  Not everyone is crafty, so a DIY gift is really not an option.  Honestly, gift giving has always come easy to me (my mother will tell you I’m the queen of gift giving 😀 ), so I enjoy making these guides and helping out everyone else!  I gathered a new list of gift ideas this year to help out those who are struggling for ideas!  Included are some basics/store bought gifts, personalized gifts, and DIY gifts!  Enjoy, and Happy Holidays!

Basics/Store Bought:

Alcohol – Of course this is going to depend on who you’re buying for, but some sort of alcohol is generally a safe bet as a gift.  A good bottle of wine, some fancy champagne, their favorite liquor – whatever it may be!  There are easy and creative ways to dress up bottles as well.  It will look incredibly fancy, but will be incredibly simple for you!


BEssentialByBets – I have to give my sister a little shout out here, and encourage you to check out her Etsy shop.  She has the best essential oil based, natural products – ranging from balms to scrubs!  I am obsessed with her sugar scrubs, paw balm for the puppies, and tat wax.  Her packaging is the most adorable and professional thing, and she gets your product to you quick!  Plus, who doesn’t want to support a growing business?

Find her shop here:

5 Senses Gift – I’ve only done this gift once, it was a hassle and a half, but it was well worth it.  All it takes is knowing the person you’re giving it too really well, a little research, and a good amount of work.  I’ve seen these done in an… intimate way, but I went pretty basic with mine!  Basically you want a gift (or gifts) for each of the five senses.  Touch (I did a massive fluffy blanket), smell (candles), taste (a bunch of their favorite candy and soda), sound (I made a movie night in a box with movies, popcorn, and candy), and sight (a framed picture of the two of you, 52 reasons why).  Like I said, it takes a little work, but the end result is amazing!

Fancy Foods – Let’s be honest – who doesn’t like food?  Everyone does, and everyone needs to eat… therefore, food is always a good idea!  But you don’t just want to give someone basic food, you want to spice it up a bit!  There are plenty of “fancy food” places out there, where you can buy food/drink sets pre-made and usually even pre-packaged up all pretty for you!  Here are a few to try:

Harry and David:  They have a huge selection of gourmet food and wine for every occasion!  Things like meat and cheese, wine, dried fruits and nuts, snacks, soup mixes, and more!

Gold Belly:  They’re “on a mission to discover America’s most loved regional foods and ship them to your door”!  Here you’ll find things like cookies, BOOZY ICE CREAM, cheesecake, macaroons, brownies, and SO much more!

Gourmet Gift Baskets:  This place has SO many different options for gift baskets, depending on what you like!  They have a tab special for Christmas, where you can find the perfect basket for your gift giving needs!  Cookies, popcorn, snacks, more!  A family business, specializi

Personalized Gifts:

Handwritten Bracelet – This is one I’m extra proud of finding, because it proved to be the best gift I’ve ever gotten (and that’s saying something).  As most of you know, my grandpa (my mom’s dad), passed away in the beginning of April.  It was obviously very hard on my mom, and I knew she was feeling lost without him.  In my attempt to give her a piece of him to keep with her forever, I found this.  This shop takes any handwriting, and creates it into a bracelet.  I scoured my mom’s house and found a card my grandpa had written “I love you Marie, Dad” in it.  I sent it in, chose my size and color, and before I knew it, it was here!  It was even prettier in person, and my mom could instantly tell it was his handwriting!  Needless to say, there were tears.  She even wore it on her wedding day.

Find the shop and bracelet here:

Sound wave – This Etsy shops makes a customized sound wave of your voice!  Before I found this online, I had no idea it was even a thing!  But it was incredibly simple, and I love how thoughtful, but easy, it was!  All I had to do was record my voice (saying whatever message I wanted), send it to her, pick my color, and wait.  It came quick; I framed it, and wrapped it, and I was done!  Easily one of the coolest gifts I have ever given.

Find the Etsy shop and sound wave picture here:

Passport – Have someone in your life that loves to travel?  This gift is perfect for them.  My brother travels a lot for his job, and honestly, the kid just loves to travel in general; so I knew this would be a perfect gift for him.  There are a couple different colors of leather, and you can pick what saying/picture you want on the front.  It did take a couple weeks to get here, but I was really impressed with the quality!  It’s something most people wouldn’t think of, but something special for the traveler in your life!

Customize your own passport here:

Dog tags for your puppies – This is one of my favorite things ever (truthfully, I’ve ordered them like 7 different times!).  Personalized dog tag for your puppies… in any color, pattern, font.  You can customize them to your liking, and make them just right for your pup.  Add their name, and your phone number in case they get lost.  This girl is so speedy too!  She always gets them to me so quickly after I order them, and they’re perfect every time!  While you’re there, check out the other products in her shop.  Anything from her is bound to be amazing!

Find the Joyful Moose Etsy shop and dog tags here:

Wooden Picture – This one is a bit more on the basic side, but still really cool for anyone who loves pictures.  I made one of these for a friend once, with one of their hunting pictures, and I loved the way it turned out!  I also love the idea of using a wedding/couple picture, or even a family picture.  The quality was insane, and I was super impressed with how quickly it got here!

Create your own wooden gift here:

Family Tree – This is one I had been wanting to get for a couple years, but I always forget to do it in time.  The downfall here is the shop is based in the UK, so you need to plan in advance for it.  Granted, they get it made in about a week, but it’s going to take a minute to get it shipped here.  Regardless, it is BEAUTIFUL!  I ordered one for my brother’s girlfriend last Christmas, knowing how important family is to her.  You can customize each tree: add names of everyone, even dogs, choose your frame, and color.  It was even better in person.


Find this wooden family tree on Etsy here:

Wine Glass – Okay, I know I sound like a broken record, but this really was one of my coolest gifts given!  If you know my mom, you know she likes to drink wine (she passed that trait on to me too! haha), and so I knew a wine glass was the perfect gift.  You can customize this one!  I added the birth dates of both my brothers and me to it – needless to say, she loved it!

wine glass

Customize your own wine glass here:

Picture Pop Socket – I have had so many compliments on my pop socket ever since I customized my own!  Mine, of course, has my puppies on it, but you can put whatever picture you want on it!  Choose your picture, choose your colors, and place your order!  It’s a simple, easy, and fun gift for anyone who loves their phone.

pop socket

This link will take you right to the customization page:


52 Reasons Why – All you need for this gift is a deck of cards, someone you love, and a little creativity!  The idea here is to gather 52 things you love about a person, and put one reason on each card.  This way, they can flip through the deck, and read all the things you love about them!  You can keep it simple, and just write those things on a piece of paper and glue them to the card.  Or you can get a little fancy, and use creative fonts, paper, and stickers to jazz it up!

52 reasons why

Themed boxes – These are one of the easiest, most fun gifts I have ever given!  There are so many ideas out there for different themed boxes.  I’ve chosen a couple of my favorites to give you some ideas!

Movie night: grab an old box, cover it with colored paper, and print out some movie themed pictures to glue on!  Fill your box with their favorite movies, soda, candy, POPCORN, even a cute bucket for popcorn (you can usually find these at Target or Walmart), maybe even throw in a blanket or some PJ’s!

movie night box

Blue Without You: This one’s easy – all you have to do is find anything BLUE!  Candy, food, small gifts, water bottles, cups, glow sticks, anything!  Wrap it all up in some blue tissue, and you’re good to go!

blue box

You Are My Sunshine: One of my favorite boxes, simply because I know it would make ME smile (how could it not?)!  The same idea as the blue box, except this time you’re filling your box with all things yellow!  The goal here is to make it as bright, happy, and cheerful as you can!  Put it all in a yellow gift bag, or throw it in a box and add a big yellow bow to the top!

my sunshine box

Date Night: The perfect idea for your significant other, guaranteed time together!  You can go a couple different ways with this one: an at-home date you can create together, or a bunch of giftcards and a little more on the spendy side!  If you’re going for at-home – fill your box with an easy meal (maybe pasta noodles and sauce, garlic bread, wine, sweets!), add in a movie, a blanket, whatever!  Or if you’d rather spend a little more – fill it with giftcards to all the places you like to go together!  A place for drinks, a place for movies, a place for dinner, and a place for dessert!

date night box

Beer Cap Frame – This one I haven’t actually done yet, but I thought it looked pretty cool – especially for that special guy in your life!  Grab a picture of the two of you, get a blank frame, and gather a variety of different beer bottle caps.  Glue the caps onto the frame, add your picture, and ta-da!  It’s a nice way to guy-ify an otherwise girly gift, perfect for your love!

beer cap frame

Cork board Make Over – Okay, I know this one sounds like it could get a little complicated, but it’s actually insanely easy!  All you need is a cork board, some fabric, and some push pins!  Cover your board with your fabric of choice (anything t-shirt like, nothing too heavy), and use your pushpins around the boarder of the board to lock your fabric into place.  I made one of these for my mom, knowing how many quotes, cards, and pictures she likes to have up in her office!  I chose a gray and white chevron fabric and some bright, colorful pushpins!  I smile every time I see it, and I know she’s putting it to good use!

cork board makeover

Scrapbook – This one is a lot more time consuming, but the payoff is huge.  I’ve actually made quite a few scrapbooks throughout the years, and each time I give them, they’re a huge hit!  I’ve made them for my friends before, filling them with pictures of us and funny quotes!  I’ve made one for my mom before, filling them with pictures of us and the family!  I’ve even made an “ugly photos” one for my dad, so he can laugh at all the crazy pictures we’ve taken throughout the years.  As I got older, I got pickier, and my scrapbooks became a lot more complicated!  But hey, if you’ve got the time and the patience, this is a great gift for someone you love!  What’s better than all of your memories in one place?

If you didn’t find what you were looking for, or you still need more ideas, you can check out my Holiday Gift Guide from last year!  I tried to choose different gifts this time, just to give you a nice variety!  But honestly, Christmas isn’t just about gifts… it’s about time spent together.  Your gift doesn’t have to be the most expensive, extravagant one to stand out in the crowd – all you need is some time and some love!  Happy Holidays everyone!!

Last years Holiday Gift Guide:


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