It’s the season for gift giving, but what do you give or ask for if there isn’t a need or room for more stuff? May I suggest…
Play space memberships – The kids get to play with new toys without the parents having to store them at home. Win-win! Play spaces are also great for play dates as you don’t have to worry about finger prints on your walls or anything fragile broken in your home. Purple Monkey Playroom, Little Beans Cafe and Present Place are some of my favorites.
Money or gift card towards a fun outing – Bowling! Movies! A craft outing! Mini golf! Ice cream parlor! Laser tag! Ninja warrior obstacle course! Choose an old favorite or try a new activity. Bonus gift – check ahead to see if reservations are necessary to make planning easier.
Music lessons – Kids love making noise! So teach them how to make pretty noises. Even if the child doesn’t pursue a career as a professional musician, or even play in the high school band, an appreciation for how instruments work and how melodies are built is a good tool to have. For the little ones, baby music classes are fun for both the child and the parents. I especially love Bucktown Music and Musical Magic in Chicago.
Theater or sporting event tickets – Who doesn’t love to cheer on their favorite team live? Or catch a local theater company’s latest production? Bonus gift – offer your babysitting services the day or evening of the event, or throw in cab money/offer to chauffeur if parking is tricky at the venue.
A commissioned poem – Imagine celebrating a a birthday, anniversary or other special occasion with a personalized poem! Chicago poet Cin Salach of Poemgrown offers this service remotely, so anyone can honor a loved one with a special verse.
Money or gift card towards a spa outing – Mani-pedis and facials at Lena Rose aren’t just of the ladies, and many spas offer double series for couples. When in doubt, book a massage at the Bodylux RX.
A home movie subscription and gourmet popcorn – Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu have tons of family friendly movies on demand. Happy is the family that can curl up with a good snack and enjoy some entertainment together.
Museum memberships – Visiting a museum or two during the winter break is a fun outing, especially in colder climates. Some museums have reciprocal relationships with similar venues in other cities, which can make vacation planning easier. Keep an eye out for holiday deals and choose a museum deal you know your loved one with appreciate.
An organized home office – Of course I want to put in a plug for my own work! Expert guidance of how and where to store family essentials (and what to edit from your home) makes for a more enjoyable, less stressful atmosphere.
Content provided by Women Belong member Kelly Brask