The Rhone Gift Guide

Having entered the Season of Stuff, many of us feel we have too much stuff. Here’s some ideas for gifts that don’t involve stuff or, at a minimum, involve always useful stuff. I may add to this post as I think of more.

  • Ask them what they really need. Get them that. It’s kind of boring and hardly a surprise but will be used and appreciated.

  • Consider the so practical it barely seems like a gift until they realize it option. An example; most people don’t swap out their toothbrushes enough. How about getting them a year’s worth (3-4)? I often forget to swap out the filter in our forced air furnace and then find I don’t have new filters when I do. If someone were to get me a case of filters I’d be overjoyed.

  • As the cook in the family, I appreciate an at home meal I don’t have to plan and make myself. Plus, my family gets to try something I may not usually prepare. A big frozen pan of vegetarian lasagna that I can thaw, pop in the oven, and serve? A few pounds of long-storage root vegetables with a good recipe inside the bag? Perfect gifts.

  • Experiences and knowledge always make great gifts. Local kitchen stores often offer cooking and/or knife skill classes. REI offers lots of great intro classes for outdoor activities. Some people jam on online classes like those offered by MasterClass, other’s don’t. Know your giftee. Heck, give the gift of sharing your own skills. A friend who passed away once taught me how to make a really good but easy to throw together curry and it’s one of the best and most long lasting gifts I’ve ever received and has the added bonus of a nice memory of her every time I make it.

  • As someone who works on home-improvement projects a whole lot, I don’t really need more tools. Instead, a better gift would be those consumable items for the tools. A box of screws or nails. Sanding disks for the orbital sander. A fresh blade for the table saw. These are things I’ll always need and will get used. So think of the things the people in your life do for either a job or hobby. Get them some of the consumables for their tasks.