Unique Graduation Gift Ideas

Some friends have shared (with me) a few of the really creative & unique gifts their children are receiving for their graduation this year.  I’m passing the ideas on to you in case you are looking for some “gift-giving inspiration”!

A unique gift one family participated in this year involved everyone sending the graduate a check for $20.11.  Get it?  The amount of the check is the same as their graduation year.

The next two involve a little more work, but the results are worth while.  In the first creative idea, the gift-giver uses photos from every school year (of the graduate’s life) to create a review of their life, in the form of a scrapbook.  And to make it a little easier, Hallmark stores have these wonderful “INSTANT” Scrapbooks.  These have the layout already done for you so you only have to add the photos and personal notations. 

And finally, if your graduate is like most, they have accumulated a large amount of tee-shirts as a result of their involvement in school clubs, sports, activities, etc. throughout their school years.  Check out this nice quilt a friend made for her daughter, using those shirts.  She simply cut-out the most important part or center of each shirt and added them to a coordinated fabric, creating a custom quilt.  Her daughter’s tee-shirts could have sat in a drawer, for years to come, until she finally decided to donate or throw them away.   But instead, they will be on display every time she pulls out her quilt for a warm cuddle.  Imagine sending off a high school graduate to college with a gift like this.  And every time they use it, they will remember how much they are loved.  I think this is a very special way to recycle a graduate’s personal memories and I applaud all of these creative ideas!  Speaking of which… don’t forget to check out my other Graduation gift ideas as well as the creative ways I came up with to gift wrap them!  Just enter “Graduation” in the SEARCH window or choose the GRADUATION category on the right hand side of my blog.

Enjoy the Creativity!!!


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]