So it’s the holiday season. For some, it has descended with the fizzling, sizzling sound of fried potatoes and dough, for others, the final countdown is underway. I have given up on figuring out gifts for family members- my kids all want cash to buy the latest, greatest game, tech toy or clothing, Yes, one’s a girl. BUT, I love trying to help others find that unique gift for the impossible person on their list.
It can be tough to find something different and new that suits someone’s unique personality. And though I can only speak for the peeps I know and love, sometimes, some cool gifts cross my path. Let me help you with your challenging list with 2017’s MBB gift guide. I’ll try and stick to the new and novel, with a hint of familiarity for those who might be nervous.
- First (and this may be my favorite) The Pet Rock. Not new and original you say? The ThinkGeek peeps say otherwise. The original Pet Rock, circa 1970-something predated all technology. So what makes it unique now? Some techno-geek has updated your favorite low maintenance pet, and for around $15 your new and improved Pet Rock comes with a USB adaptor. Just plug it into any available USB port, and all its needs will be met. (Of course, if you have the new MacBook, you’ll need that USB-C adapter) Remember, the Pet Rock, like it’s predecessor, doesn’t do a darn thing, except make you smile as you concoct stories to tell friends and coworkers.
- While I’m headed down memory lane – you all remember Mattel’s ViewMaster? You would insert a photo disc and see images in 3-D. My favorite was always the Superman ones, and yes, I still have the viewer and the discs. Well my friends, do not lament your long lost ViewMaster, Mattel has modernized your old toy, making it compatible with smartphones. The Viewmaster Virtual Reality Starter Pack is here! By placing your phone into the headset, you will be immersed in a 360-degree world worthy of today’s entertainment demands. I’d skip giving this to the kids, and give it to your spouse instead. At around $15, it’s sure to bring asmile or two and relieve some of that boredom during the workday.
- For your den, office or dorm room – get your Hobbit loving family a map of Middle Earth. A great conversation piece at around $10 unframed. I believe a Game of Thrones map is available as well. Warm up your winter walls with these sepia maps and a smile. Find these on Amazon.
- Heavy.com. Yes, this may be the best gift ever to me or any other lit fans out there. Unusual Band-Aids. Nothing helps beat the band-aid blues like a good old Shakespearean insult. Of course, there are also Poe bandages, so you can mix and match my two favorite authors of all time. I want to keep these in my purse to hand out like chewing gum. They range about $10 for 15 band-aids.
- Board games – not what they used to be. For those of you who like Cards Against Humanity or Exploding Kittens (don’t you love the Rainbow Ralphing Cat?) Target has Joking Hazard. (Also available on Amazon) This card game is filled with off-color humor (fans of Cyanide & Happiness will be thrilled) Think of this as having to build the most horrific or funny comic possible in the style of Cards Against Humanity. $25 gets you an evening of laughter and a lifetime of off colored humor.
- The Keysmart Compact Key Holder, available on Amazon, is a practical gift. Using the idea of a Swiss Army Knife, this key fob holds up to 10 keys. Yes, there are expansion packs and a loop ring for that bulky car remote. $20.
- As you know, I am a coffee addict. Therefore, it behooves me to include an incredible new French Press (pricey but worth it $40 on Amazon) As you know, I believe the best coffee is French Pressed or Cold Brew. I love my press, but this is the next step, for those who like to savor their morning beans. The Sterling Pro Double Wall Stainless Steel French Coffee Press is insulated to keep that coffee hot for a long time. (I am apparently not a good candidate for this one, and Mom, I know you’re reading this- it is NOT a hint.)
- Rocketwave Smart Notebook is definitely on my list for a few geeky family members. This super cool notebook comes with a Pilot FriXion pen and is reusable; you microwave it to erase. Crazy, right folks? (only can do five times though – it’s still a new technology) Benefits? You get the freedom to sketch and doodle your next big idea in the traditional way, but you can send those notes to google docs, Dropbox, iCloud, Evernote, and your email. It’s under $30, so it’s affordable. The coolest feature is that you can hold your smartphone above the notebook, and it flips the pages and scans images.
- And for my techie son who loves pie, (thanks to my girl for telling me about this,) Raspberry Pi. Think of it as the mother of all motherboards. Available on Amazon for $35.
- And for your favorite chef… Foodie Dice. Available at UncommonGoods.com In a nondescript muslin bag are five laser engraved dice. Roll them out to get options for protein, carb choice, herb selection, bonus ingredients and cooking methods. Four additional dice handle those seasonal veggies. Roll the dice and accept the challenge. Let the cook-off begin!
And there you have it. Morning Beans Blog’s top ten gifts for the season. Also great for birthdays.
Stay motivated, mindful and caffeinated. 😊☕