When I was a kid, I remember my aunt complaining to her sisters about the gifts they gave my grandmother. She said the gifts were useless dust catchers, knick-knacks, and junk. Please! Give her something practical!
Thereafter, I think my grandmother received slippers, nightgowns, and handkerchiefs. Not the most exciting presents, but useful.
Now that I’m older and looking around at everything I’ve accumulated, I can appreciate my aunt’s sentiments.
Yet, I’d like something more exciting than a pair of Dearfoams.
With many of us downsizing or decluttering at this stage of life, some of us just don’t want any more stuff.
Yet, the joy of giving and receiving gifts is one of life’s little pleasures not to be forsaken.
Considering that, I have some novel gift ideas that don’t take up space.
I hope these ideas help you choose the perfect gift for the person in your life who is either downsizing or trying to remove clutter from their life.
Novel Gift Ideas That Don’t Take Up Space
Before you shop, consider the person’s likes and dislikes.
What are their hobbies? Is there something they wouldn’t splurge on, but you can? Also, if you decide to purchase tickets for travel or an event, consider purchasing one for yourself and your friend or loved one so that you can enjoy time together.
And remember, nothing is more insulting than anti-aging or stereotypical “old people” gifts.
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Many older adults are adventurous. You can find us on the go participating in all sorts of fun and exciting adventures. And, I dare say that many of us are more fit than in our youth. Keeping that in mind, think about the recipient of your gift. Is there a place they’d like to visit? An experience they’ve always wanted to have? Think dog sled tours in winter, or ziplining in summer. What about train tickets to a quaint little town in the mountains? Are you gifting an adventurer over age 62? A National Parks Senior Pass lasts a lifetime and takes up only a slot in a wallet. The pass covers entrance fees for the bearer and the occupants of the vehicle. It’s good at over 2,000 U.S. recreational areas including national parks and national wildlife refuges.
-Clutter Removal Service
Some of us are decluttering, while many of us want to. Problem is, where does one start? This is a special gift for someone who wants to get organized but doesn’t know where to begin. Luxury services like Neat Method charge by the hour for professional organizing. They specialize in decluttering, downsizing, and unpacking. And if you know an older adult with some junk they’d like to disappear, perhaps Junk King can help. With the exception of hazardous materials, the company disposes of large items such as mattresses, furniture, and appliances. Depending on how much you have to spend, you might forgo the services and volunteer yourself for a friendly organizing project. But before you move forward with any of these ideas, consider whether or not your gift would be appreciated. Some people don’t want others coming in a rearranging their home.
-Give the Gift of a New Skill
Think lessons. Think classes. They can be virtual or in person. Let me rattle off a few ideas that come to mind…ballroom dance lessons, baking school classes with King Arthur, painting lessons, photography, videography, cross country, or downhill ski lessons. The possibilities are endless! Memberships to online communities like Skillshare are great for creative types. Then of course there’s Masterclass where students learn from the best for $15.00 a month. Many older adults love expanding their horizons through learning. Additionally, learning a new skill is very beneficial for keeping brain cells healthy as we get older.
-Travel and Learn
Road Scholar trips are an ideal gift for retired couples who thrive on new experiences. But, it doesn’t have to be a couple. Road Scholar provides adventures for solo travelers as well. Offering programs since 1975, they specialize in educational travel and learning adventures. The program aims to encourage adults to learn, discover, and travel. Most packages costs from $1,500 to $10,000. So before you buy a package for someone else, be sure it’s a learning adventure that would interest them. Visit Road Scholar’s website to see the many learning adventures being offered in the U.S. and around the globe.
Retirement may mean there’s more time for catching up on the classics. However, sitting down to read a good book isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. That’s where Audible shines. A gift membership to Audible is perfect for someone with dyslexia or someone who enjoys having another person read aloud to them. Additionally, Audible is ideal when doing things that don’t require a lot of concentration. For example, doing chores. You can listen to a podcast and do the dishes at the same time. Plans start at $7.95 a month. As Audible says, “Find your next great listen”.
Do you remember the old Calgon Bath Powder commercials, “Calgon Take Me Away”? As a young mother, I used to dream of luxurious bubble baths. Finally, I bought some Calgon. Lo and behold, the commercials were dreamier than the real experience. Regardless of my falling for advertising, I’m still into mind and body wellness. Having said that, perhaps you know someone who would appreciate an uplifting experience. As with my other gift ideas that don’t take up space, this one sends the receiver to either a lovely spa treatment or yoga retreat. If you want someone to feel pampered, gift them a soothing facial or manicure. For someone looking for a fresh perspective, a yoga retreat could be the answer. Sites like BookYogaRetreats offer rejuvenating experiences in beautiful locations.
Sometimes as we get older we don’t want more clutter. Yet, giving and receiving gifts is a time-honored tradition not to be forsaken. However, there are many gift ideas that don’t take up space that older adults would appreciate. Thoughtfulness is the key to giving an impressive gift to someone you love.
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