It’s a week away from Christmas and the rush is on; shopping is in full swing, roads are congested with bumper to bumper traffic as shoppers run swiftly about, in search for gifts on their Christmas list. It’s shopping madness…and one can easily be persuaded to purchase useless stuff, which can be found in the aisles of most stores today; example being, a chia pet. You can find random gift boxed items at stores like Walgreens, your local grocers, and even Home Depot, along with its competitors. This is the time of year in which retailers receive an array of boxed items to sell over the holiday season; items not normally carried by the stores. So, if you are looking for last minute ideas, you might see what they have to offer…or you can put on your thinking cap and try to come up with something more unique.

Gift cards are generally a great way to save time, but some come with a cost for activation, along with expiration dates. Another gift idea would be to check with your local banks or Libraries for any promotional deals; at times they’ll sell tickets for upcoming events, movies, and or shows. Amusement Parks also offer special promo deals for the holidays; a great gift for a child or that thrill seeker in your life.

Food…everyone needs to eat, which brings my thoughts to Omaha Steaks; a great idea for anyone who enjoys cooking up a great meal. For those who love to snack, all you need is a mason jar (or something similar) and put together a brownie, cookie or waffle mix in a layered order, like sand art and tie the jar in a ribbon with the recipe attached. The same could be said by using a decorative basket; putting a gourmet dip mix or seasonings in it… hot coco, teas or wine are also great ideas, along with a gift card for a grocery store. You can virtually put anything you want in a basket; it might be time consuming but worth it. Pinterest has many ideas and recipes you can easily put together.

Many families today do a gift exchange, such as white elephant or something similar, where you only need one gift… then a board game is a great idea; it brings people together in a positive way. Non-gender specific gifts shouldn’t be too hard; examples being; auto detail service or car washes, services provided by a beauty school or college, homemade jams or other goods, museum or zoo passes, tickets to an upcoming game (football, basketball etc.) or event, music and books. I find myself randomly stopping at stores I normally wouldn’t go to, as it often brings creative ideas for all sorts of gifts. Wherever your shopping takes you, remember to always be kind and have patience; not everyone has the holiday spirit, nor do we know what possible circumstances surround an individual. So, it’s important to be cognitive of others.

Time is of the essence this week, so drive carefully and don’t panic when it comes to shopping…it’ll all work out. Besides…it’s not about who got what…because the greatest gift of all is LOVE, and that’s something we all want to have in our lives.

Make your week count.