When I have gifts to buy for an entire family, I like to deliver a family gift rather than individual presents. Not only is doing so less time-consuming and expensive, but the right gift can bring a family together and help to create family memories.
Taking a family to the movies or any activity can be expensive. Parents will appreciate an outing that doesn’t dent the family budget.
Get Inspired: When my kids were little, we lived at the zoo. A zoo membership is a great family gift and it can be enjoyed year round. Deliver a zoo membership with Animal Crackers, plastic toy animals, plush cuddly animals, a disposable camera, or a great travel backpack to pack for the adventure.
Families of Faith
Get Inspired: Let mom or dad pick out what the family needs most with a religious bookstore gift card delivered with a book that inspired you (new or your used copy), a game for the family to play, or an inspirational wall hanging. Uplifting music is a good choice as well. I’m always looking for ways to bring more harmony into our home so a gift card for a church bookstore might provide the inspiration needed.
Get Inspired: Get a gift card or season pass to a local water park for the family. Deliver it with beach towels, water toys, goggles, or sunblock. They’ll use it all summer and think of you every trip down the water slide!
Movie Night at the Theater
Get Inspired: Deliver a movie gift card with theater candy or a packet of microwave popcorn. Or get a DVD (or book) for the first movie in a series so the family can watch the old movie at home and the new one in the theater.
Movie Night at Home
Get Inspired: Get the family a gift card to a movie rental service like Netflix or Redbox. Deliver it with a classic DVD like Wizard of Oz to get the family started and a copy of “The Best Old Movies for Families: A Guide to Watching Together” so they can pick the next show with confidence. Movie snacks, popcorn, or a pizza delivery gift card would be a bonus.
Family Camping Trip
Get Inspired: Get the family a gift card to a National or State Park (some have them) and all the fixin’s for S’mores. If you can’t get a gift card to the park itself, get a gift card for camping gear instead. Taking the family camping requires a lot of gear or stocking up on food and firewood before the adventure. Get a gift card to make the trip easier to manage.
Get Inspired: Add fishy crackers or candy to a gift card to Bass Pro Shops or Cabellas and send the family fishing. Pick up a card game of “Go Fish” so they have something to do it the fish aren’t bitin’.
Take ‘em Out to the Ballgame
Get Inspired: Get the family a gift card to the ballgame and slip it inside a box of Cracker Jacks for a real “Surprise inside!” Buy tickets from the ballpark, get an MLB.com Gift Card, or check out local college sporting events. If you don’t know what the family’s schedule is like, get a gift card to the sporting goods store so they can buy gear for a game or event of their choosing. Add peanuts, licorice, or hot dog fixin’s for a night at the ballpark.
A Magical Gift
Get Inspired: Treat the family to the Happiest Place on Earth with a gift card to the theme park. Create a magical gift by delivering the gift card with a set of Mickey ears, a pre-park souvenir, or a pin to start a family collection. When we went to Disneyland for the first time, my step-daughter gave each of our kids a Disneyland gift card. We loved buying souvenirs without spending our vacation dollars.
Start a Family Tree
Researching your family tree is in vogue and it’s never been easier to get started. Give a gift membership to Ancestry.com and include a “how to” book on getting started. Or deliver the gift membership with a real tree the family can plant in their backyard. With your gift, they’ll start two family trees.
The family that plays together, stays together. Get a gift card to a kite store, bike shop, or sporting goods store. Partner it with a first aid kit for when things don’t go as planned. Or buy a kite, bubbles, jump ropes, or a hula hoop. The family can play immediately with simple toys then get serious with gear they buy with the gift card.
Get Inspired: Get a gift card to the roller skating rink and deliver it with glow stick necklaces and roller derby socks for everybody in the family. Or get a roller skating cookie cutter and deliver a skating gift card with a plate full of roller skate cookies. What kid wouldn’t be delighted?
Roller Skating Gift Card: Find a roller skating gift card at the local rink.
Get Inspired: Get a gift card to the ice rink and deliver it with a pair of inexpensive gloves for each member of the family. If the kids are little, add a children’s book about ice skating. Older kids might enjoy a DVD with an ice skating theme. During the holidays, you can put the ice skating gift card with an ice skating ornament or holiday decoration such as Frosty on Ice Skates.
To find an Ice Skating Gift Card: Search online for “public ice skating rinks” open year-round or select a popular outdoor rink open during the holidays.
Get Inspired: Get a gift card to the bowling alley and deliver it with toy pins, a bowling card game, funky socks, or hand sanitizer and febreeze for those rented shoes! Borrow the roller skating idea and make a plate full of bowling pin cookies as well. Family fun for everyone!
Family Road Trip
Get Inspired: Combine practical with fun. Get a gift card to the gas station, automotive store, or oil and lube shop. Deliver it with road trip bingo games, a new movie for the in-car DVD player, a book on CD, spill proof travel mugs, magnetic travel games, or a mess of car snacks. The gift card is practical. But the presentation doesn’t have to be.
Get Inspired: Get a gift card to the grocery store or local deli and deliver it with a picnic basket and a picnic blanket. Or add picnic games such as a frisbee, whiffle ball, or croquet.