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Archive for the ‘gift giving’ tag

December 17th, 2013 at 7:57 am

Gifts That Give Twice

helping handsTis the season for shopping and giving. Love it or hate it, it’s hard not to get swept up in the materialism of buying things for people. Not to mention the difficulty of finding just the right gift for everyone.

It’s great to give this season’s must-have toys or electronics, but giving opportunity to someone in need can really capture the spirit of giving, especially for those on our list who really don’t need any more “things”. And there are many ways to do that.

If you want to give locally, consider donating to a local school’s classroom project with DonorsChoose.org. Support literacy by donating to Reach Out and Read, which provides free books to families via their pediatricians. Both of these sites allow you to find needs right in your community and allow you to choose where your gift is actually going.

Most communities have a Meals on Wheels Program that provides nutritious meals for seniors and the housebound. There’s also God’s Love We Deliver in the tri-state area that provides meals for those who are sick.

Toys for Tots and the USPS Letters to Santa programs are great ways to help provide toys to needy children to make their Christmas special.

Global organizations such as UNICEF, Save the Children, Oxfam and Heifer International make it easy for you to donate mosquito nets, vaccinations, goats, bees and other sustainable gifts that can give a struggling family a chance to pull themselves up.

Also, look to your favorite stores and brands for opportunities to give back by buying items that include a charitable donation as part of the purchase price. TOMS shoes provide a pair to someone in need for every pair purchased. (Red) has a wide range of items that provide a portion of the proceeds to fight HIV/AIDS.

There are teachers, children, seniors, veterans, disadvantaged women and youth in your community and around the world that need a helping hand. And there are many ways you can do just that. And from my own experiences, the response to a charitable gift is much more gratifying than the response to a tie or iPhone case. That’s the spirit!

You can also find Paula on LinkedInFacebook and Twitter @techsmart319. Feel free to reach out if you have questions.

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May 6th, 2013 at 5:00 am

Dropping Hints for Mothers Day – The Hi-Tech Edition

Do you get appliances every year for Mothers Day? Even though a new toaster is nice, it isn’t exactly what we were wishing for year after year. You may hope for a beautiful piece of jewelry, handmade picture from your little ones, or even a certain plant for your outdoor landscape. How do you “hint” around, especially when your kids are too little to drop some hints?

Gone are the days of magazine pictures conveniently stuffed for your partner to see or even things circled in the weekly store ads, there are some great tools that you can keep a “Wish List” throughout the year!

Pinterest – Make a Pinterest board. So easy and visual for anyone you share it with. You can see mine here!

Evernote or Springpad – Collect ideas or even write a list and save as a note. Write down stores you find items at, take pictures, and even put the aisle number. It can’t get easier!

Store Wish Lists – Many stores have ways to register and create your own wish list.

Web Sites or Smart Phone Apps – The lists you make at the end of the year for your children can be used just as easily for you!

All of these options will make that blender a thing of the past… you just have to remember to send a link or message to remind them to check it!!

By the way… to my husband, if you are reading this… be sure to check out my Evernote Notebook labeled Kim’s Wish List or my Pinterest Board. HINT HINT!

Kim Ross also writes at  A Little Bit of This and That ~ The Adventures of a Stay at Home Mom.

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December 6th, 2011 at 5:00 am

Holiday Gift Ideas for the Gadget Lover on Your List

So December is here, the lists are made, the shopping is being done in earnest, and we find ourselves devouring any article with the term “gift ideas” in the title. I know I am.

I have a big list, including 6 birthdays in December. Every year I spend so much time poring over the list, browsing for ideas, and hoping, always, to find just the right gifts.

As for tech-gifts, it’s getting easier to give them now that so many of us have some sort of technology that can be enhanced or upgraded with a gadget or a gift card. While I would love to give everyone on my list something really cool like an iPad or a Kindle Fire, an XBox, or a big screen TV, I wasn’t one of the recent Powerball winners. So here’s a few ideas from the affordable aisle.

For the Traveler:

  • Cocoon Grid-It gadget organizers are brilliant. Think of a tray with a grid of elastic bands to hold your stuff in place. One look and I immediately bought one for a frequent traveler friend. And I bought one for me too. I can tuck my chargers, earbuds, a lip balm, pens, flash drive, tissues, and business card holder under the elastic bands, slip the organizer in my messenger bag with my laptop and I’m ready to hit the road. No more rifling through every pocket of my bag to find what I need.
  • The New Trent portable device charger. I wrote about this one during the power outage back in October. I love having this on hand and it will have a place of honor in my Grid-It organizer. Anyone with a smartphone would appreciate this.

For the Reader:

  • I recently rediscovered the joy of listening to audio books, especially in the car. It’s a nice diversion from the non-stop Christmas music. A subscription to audible.com or audiobooks.com might be a good gift for someone who spends a lot of time driving or would just enjoy listening to a book for a change.
  • How about an e-reader? Kindle, Nook, and Kobo are just 3 of the e-readers on the market. And the pricing on them has dropped considerably, making them more affordable than ever. And gift cards for buying e-books are always a great idea.

For the Movie Lover:

  • One of my favorite gifts last year was Roku box with a 6 month subscription to Netflix. This device allows me to watch movies on demand on my television, via the internet. I love it. There are multiple versions of the box and they start at just $49.99.

For anyone:

  • Another really cool gadget is the mini capsule speakers for your iPod or MP3 players. They’re inexpensive, portable, cute and make a great gift.
  • When in doubt, there’s always the gift card. Maybe you can’t afford to give the big gift, but you can help them towards it.

Hopefully this will give you a few ideas for those gadget lovers on your giving list. Without breaking the bank. Happy shopping!

You can also find Paula on LinkedInFacebook and Twitter @techsmart319. Feel free to reach out if you have questions.

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