“Gifting” FAMILY MEMORIES

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The world is SO uncertain these days.  That fact, alone, places renewed importance on FAMILY and creating memories.  Of course, my readers know how much I (personally) treasure memory-making, but I also LOVE to give memory-making “Starter Kits” (as gifts) to encourage it in other families… new or established!  So, keep this creative idea in mind as a unique gift for:  New Baby, New Neighbor “WELCOME!”, First Christmas, Baby Shower, First Halloween, Birthday, Mother’s or Father’s Day, First Easter, etc.

In the past, I’ve created some fun-to-give New Baby, New Grandbaby and FAMILY-themed “Starter Kits”.  And these gift baskets always include my book because it contains year-round ideas for making memories plus some great seasonal decorating ideas too!  Below is a basket from another previous post that focused on the family (mainly CHRISTMAS items) and a new one I just created that features year-round family fun:


My latest basket, which I’m donating to RELAY FOR LIFE™, includes year-round memory-making, family fun:

  • My book- CREATIVE FAMILY MEMORIES & TRADITIONS
  • Birthday Celebration Photo Frame
  • Halloween Plates, Napkins, Cups, (boney hand) Salad Tongs & Spooky Sounds CD (to recreate my SPOOKY DINNER family tradition)
  • Hallmark Christmas Ornament and Book Combo
  • “FAMILY MEMORIES” Ornament/Sign

Look at the fun Dollar Tree “find” I added as gift basket topper!

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Making MORE Memories!

I am firm believer that children, and people in general, remember what you DO much more than what you give.  Because of this philosophy, I receive many requests to create gift baskets filled with items that help us make memories with family and/or friends.  If you would also like to make one of these, here’s how I build one:

I use my book (Creative Family Traditions and Ideas) as the foundation for each basket because it has ideas useful in many different types of  relationships, including simple friendships.  Next, I search out other manufacturers who also sell products encouraging us to focus on the “M” word…. MEMORIES…  not money and include those, thereby supporting my book as well as the products of other deserving companies.  Finally, rather than place the items in a typical basket, I search for “useful” containers.  Before you know it, I have a gift filled with fun and useful items for creating memories or at the very least – items that make life easier for the recipient.

On an even HAPPIER note ~ When I wrote my book, I discovered that raising 4 children on an extremely tight budget provided me with a true “gift”.  Necessity being the mother of invention, my circumstances helped me become creative – teaching me how to spend “time” (on my children).  I developed clever traditions, ideas and problem solvers as well as ways to reinvent new uses for everyday items.  All of my efforts made them feel loved and special.  And now that they are amazing & creative adults themselves, I realize that they benefited tremendously from my situation!  Coming to that conclusion makes me even happier because I realize that today’s tough economic hardships may actually have a silver lining… it gives me hope for the future adults of today’s struggling parents.  I applaud the parents who roll with the punches and dig deep to find their own FREE creativity to “spend” on their children.  I wish I could give every one of them a HUGE HUG and tell them to hang in there.  I want them to know that the end result can be positive and wonderful!

[check out BABY’S 1st GIFT post as well as the 2 baskets (below) that I created for a fund-raiser, this week]

 

 

Baby’s First Gift

If you know someone who is about to or has just had a baby, I have a wonderful gift suggestion…

Most people purchase outfits, toys, necessities… you know, the “usual” new baby gifts.  My suggestion to you is to give the “unusual”!  Because my book is full of SO MANY wonderful ideas for making memories, it makes an excellent Beginner Manual of Ideas for New Parents.  Especially around the holidays, new parents are so excited to begin making memories with their child and YOU can provide them with the perfect head start.

In this gift basket, I placed:

  • My Book (Creative Family Traditions and Ideas)
  • Baby’s 1st Teddy Bear
  • Baby’s Memory Book (for recording all the “Firsts” in Baby’s life)
  • Parent Journal (my personal favorite tradition in my book)
  • Photo Frame to display “Baby’s 1st Birthday” picture
  • Hallmark “Baby’s 1st Christmas” Keepsake Ornament

I tucked all of these adorable, color-coordinated, Memory-making goodies inside a very usable basket.  For under $50, this gift contains everything a parent needs to celebrate and record their child’s life and memories.  What a SPECIAL gift to bring to a Baby Shower or on your first visit with the New Arrival… they’ll never forget your “unique” gift!


One of my FAVORITE traditions (in my book)

I cannot tell you how many times I’ve presented gifts, to friends and family, using this method.  I thought of it when my boys were teenagers and have used it for “event” birthdays (like this 60th birthday celebration – see photos below), Baby and Bridal Showers, Graduations, Mother’s or Father’s Day and Holidays.  Whenever I feel like showering someone with a little fun and happiness, I fill up an umbrella with goodies they love.  My brother loves Starbucks coffee and scratch-off lottery tickets, so I filled his umbrella with $25 worth.  He LOVED it!!!!   It’s so funny to watch their expression when they think you have bought them JUST an umbrella…… and THEN….. they open it up and are thrilled beyond words!

The assembly details and suggestions are in my book (CLICK on book icon, in right column, to order) as well as TONS of other fun ways to celebrate the Events, Birthdays, Seasons and Holidays of our lives.  Best of all…. they’re road tested!  Making memories is SOOO important.  If you (or someone in your life) need ideas, they will LOVE my book… gift them!

By the way, this time, I added a new twist to my gift umbrella.  I placed it in a cardboard tube (left over from the inside of a roll of wrapping paper) and then, wrapped the cardboard tube with bright birthday paper & curling ribbon.  I thought it would be fun for it to resemble an English Christmas Cracker – except mine is a Birthday Cracker, loaded with prizes!  Check out the fun he had ~

Back to School

As summer draws to an end, and you begin to think about the children returning to school, it’s important to reflect on how many “summer” memories we made.  I’m not referring to over-the-top vacations, but more importantly, time spent together.  Whether you’re a parent, grandparent, auntie or uncle, we have such a short window in which to create some fun with the children in our lives… I hope you were successful in that accomplishment.

Of course, summer isn’t over yet.  So, if you find that you’re short on ideas, feel free to check out my book.  It has some great ideas for summer AND back-to-school!   Plus, it’s VERY reasonably priced and full of AWESOME, year-round, original ideas – making it a GREAT GIFT for any parent – so pass the word around, if you don’t mind. 🙂

Year-round, idea-filled CHAPTERS in my book, available at http://www.creativefamilytraditions.com

Also, please keep it in mind for your own year-round and holiday gift needs (like teachers, baby showers, new baby, friend or relative birthday).   If you’ve enjoyed my ideas on this blog, you’ll LOVE my book.  And of course, your support is much appreciated… THANK YOU!

A "SAMPLE" page from the SUMMERTIME Section of my book