Small gift ideas to convey big thanks
From nurturing our kids to styling our hair to making us hold that plank a few seconds longer, we all have people in our lives who make our days a little brighter and our worlds a little better. Christmas gives us the perfect opportunity to express our gratitude.
We’ve put together several gift ideas, along with snappy notes for gift tags, to help you express your gratitude in thoughtful, inexpensive ways. After all, we all know that little things like perfect nails can make a big difference.
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- Hallmark’s God’s Love Cross Ornament.
- A recipe book with a collection of favorite recipes from the congregation.
- Planters filled with holly and ivy or potted bulbs (learn how to cultivate Christmas cheer with our bulb-forcing guide and planting tips).
- A book about faith or a CD of Christmas carols, gospel music or Gregorian chants.
- Panful of brownies as a ploy for earning “brownie points.”
- Fun pens, markers and sticky notes with a tag that says, “For a notable teacher.”
- Jar of candy with the number of candies equaling the number of school days left in the school year.
- Our “Thank-You Bunches” teacher appreciation craft with a note that says, “Thanks for helping me learn and grow.”
- Our Teacher Blackboard ornament and notepads designed with kids art. (Take kids’ drawings to a print shop and they’ll create the notepads for you.)
For music teachers
- Our Merry Music Makers Storytellers ornaments and a note that says, “Thanks for playing a major role in my development!”
- Our Santa Claus is Coming to Town Guitar musical ornament with a note that says “You Rock!”
- Wrap a long box of chocolates in white paper and draw on piano keys.
- Warm hat with a note that says, “A capella (or Da capo) for your heado.”
- Doughnut holes (with pretzel sticks stuck through the centers of some of them) in a box labeled “Whole notes of thanks.”
For dance teachers
- Nail care kit and lotion with a note that says, “For the jazziest hands on the block.”
- Ballet Wishes® Barbie™ Ornament and a note that says, “Tutu my favorite dance teacher.”
- A tote bag made from a leotard.
For new neighbors
- A bundle of “just moved” announcements or monogrammed note cards and a book of stamps (wrap it up in a pretty handkerchief for truly noteworthy gift).
- A plate of Christmas cookies, a folder of takeout menus and nearby babysitters’ names and phone numbers.
- A New Home Holiday Ornament with a note that says, “Thanks for planting yourself in our neck of the woods.”
For nail technicians and hairstylists
- Scented candle and a book with stylist scissors or nail file “bookmark” and a tag that says, “Happy Holidays from the top of my head [or tips of my toes] to the bottom of my heart.”
- Gift card with a note that says, “Happy Holidays to the one who never fails to keep me looking polished!” or “Thank you for all of the good-hair days.”
For yoga instructors/personal trainers
- A gift card to a healthy restaurant with a note that says, “When you don’t pay for the meal, the calories don’t count. Enjoy the holidays!”
- An iTunes gift card and a note that says, “Happy Holidays to my favorite drill sergeant.”
- A Yoga Mat Ornament and a note that says, “Wishing you a Zen moment during the holidays.”
- Bundt cake and a note that says, “You’re nothing Bundt fabulous!” or “Batter up!”
- Turn a team T-shirt or jersey into a handy tote bag, pillow or work of art. Add a note that says, “You’re the perfect fit for our team!”
- Keepsake Ornament of his or her sport or favorite player and a note that says, “We hope your Christmas is a win-win” or “Wishing you a winning Christmas season.”
- Decorated sports ball or other sports equipment signed by the team. (Check out our round-up of coaches gift ideas for other winning ways to show thanks from the team.)
- Wrap the gift or attach the gift tag with a whistle.
- Gift-wrap bundle that includes tape, cutting tools, wrap, ribbons, bows, gadgets, gift bags, gift card holders, gift tags, tissue and ribbon with a note that says, “Just the thing for your outside-the-box thinking.”
- Fun sticky notes with a note that says, “Merriness must be your full-time job. So glad to work with you.”
- Coffee mug and gourmet coffee with note that says, “Couldn’t start the day without you. And wouldn’t want to. Happy Holidays.”
- A basket filled with paper plates, napkins and cups in holiday theme so she doesn’t have to do the dishes during the holidays. A note could read, “Dishing you happy holidays.”
- Gift card to a favorite movie theater, bookstore or spa for a night of relaxation with a note that reads, “No one does it quite like you. And no one appreciates it quite like I do.”
- Comfy slippers with cash bonus tucked inside with a note: “When it comes to housekeepers, you leave everyone in the dust.”
- A Willow Tree® Angel of Hope Ornament with a note that adds “…and my saving grace.”
For babysitters/day care providers/pet caretakers
- “Spa in a jar” with nail treatments, earplugs and magazines so they can be their own caretakers.
- Travel mug with a coffee shop gift card.
- Pretty toiletry bag filled with tissues, nail clippers, aspirin, hand sanitizer and bandages.
- Food treat with a tag from the pet saying, “People treats for my favorite person.”
- Christmas Eve first-aid kit filled with batteries, tape, superglue, snacks, energy drinks, screwdrivers and a note that reads, “Administer as needed for Christmas cheer (and sanity). Stat!”
- A Healthcare Superhero ornament and a roll of Lifesavers with a note about what a lifesaver they have been.
For your mail carrier
- Cookies that look like envelopes in a little mailbox gift tin.
- A Keepsake Ornament and a note that says, “Thanks for always delivering smiles.”
- Ear warmers and heavy socks.
For landscapers/lawn-care providers/gardeners
- A Cactus in a Santa Hat ornament and a note that says, “Thanks to you my grass is always greener!”
- Nice set of yard gloves.
- Gift card to a local restaurant that serves “fresh greens” on the menu.
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