Our Blog : 60 Days of Gift Ideas

1 Day Until Christmas - Share Some Family Recipes

Gift idea: Favorite family recipes 

Makes a good gift for: Good last minute gift for someone who likes to cook or bake

I think most people have a secret stash of recipes – whether they be in their head or on paper – that are worth sharing. I am not necessarily talking about the secret family recipe for chocolate chip cookies or meatloaf, but more day-to-day recipes that can work for a weeknight dinner, and maybe a couple more special occasion recipes. Why not type up some recipes, print them out on index cards or card stock and put together a little bundle of recipes or a little family cookbook? If you want to do a little more, you could head to the grocery store and pick up any of the more rare ingredients (like special spices or herbs), a couple cute dish-towels, an apron or cooking utensils and make a little gift-basket.

2 Days Until Christmas - A Cozy Christmas Light Tour!

Gift idea: a cozy tour of Christmas lights in your neighborhood

Makes a good gift for: Anyone!

If you are like me, then you LOVE Christmas lights. I love every evening when the lights switch on (ours are on a timer) and seeing them shimmer and flash through the windows. I love bundling up and taking the dog out for a walk and oohing and aahing at the great lights in our neighborhood.

A fun last-minute and very low-cost gift would be to take a Christmas-light lover like me on a cozy tour of the best lights in the area. You should scope out a couple neighborhoods a few nights before and take notes as to where the best places are. Then arrange (or surprise) your guest of honor with a tour - complete with a travel mug of hot cocoa or hot cider, and of course some Christmas music! You could wrap up the evening by stopping somewhere to get a slice of pie, or maybe a milkshake. Sounds like a fun night to me!

3 Days Until Christmas - Homemade Craft Projects

Gift idea: DIY Crafts 

Makes a good gift for: Good last minute gift for family members

Every Christmas when I was a kid, my mom would get me some kind of craft to do during Christmas break. There were a few years where it was decorating ornaments that were then given away to family members as Christmas gifts. As I got older, I enjoyed helping my grandmother decorate her Christmas tree and seeing the ornaments I had made as a kid go up on her tree, year after year.

Below are a couple of fun crafts that you should have all the necessary ingredients for either on-hand already, or be able to easily acquire at the grocery store. I think all of these would make a great last-minute gift, and some of them would also be a great holiday-time craft to do with any little ones that might be hanging around!

Make your own salt dough ornaments – another fun activity to do with kids and makes a great gift for all the family members! 

Ingredients needed: 
4 cups flour
1 cup salt
1.5 cups warm water
Paint and decorations for the ornaments 

For instructions, see thehappyhousewife.com

Make your own gardener’s hand scrub – great gift for a gardener or mechanic, or just someone who needs a little pampering. 

Ingredients needed: 
Dawn dish soap with Olay Beauty Hand Renewal (this is what the blogger used, but I bet this would work with any kind of dish soap) 
Jars to put the hand scrub in 

For instructions, see onegoodthingbyjilee.com

Make your own play dough – a fun gift to make for kids, and a fun activity to do with kids. 

Ingredients needed: 
Vegetable oil 
Cream of tarter 
Food coloring 
Containers to store/give the play dough in 

For instructions, see anartnest.squarespace.com

Homemade finger paints – another fun gift to make for little ones – and totally non-toxic! 

Ingredients needed: 
Corn starch 
Food coloring 
Jars for storing/giving the paint in 

For instructions, see theberry.com

4 More Days Until Christmas - Gift Cards and Then Some

Some last minute Christmas Gift/DIY Gift Ideas will be coming your way from now until Christmas.

Gift idea: Gift cards, and then some

Makes a good gift for: Anyone – good last minute gift

Christmas is fast approaching, and as time runs out sometimes we remember that we totally forgot to get someone something. That feeling has to be one of the worst. And as Christmas gets closer, it can get harder to find certain items, and also just more hectic to go out in to the masses of last minute shoppers.

These ideas don’t have to be just for last-minute gifts, though. A well-planned gift card or other type of gift certificate can go over very well. All of these ideas will also fit in a Twelve Days of Christmas Box, and can be a great way to pack a punch into a little box!

Gift Cards: as I said above, these don’t have to be a last minute thing you pick up at the checkout counter at the grocery store. It seems like pretty much every store has gift cards these days, and so do movie theaters, restaurants and amazon.com.

Magazine subscriptions: Every year I get Jonathon a gift subscription to Harpers Magazine. Its only $10, and it lasts all year! Lots of magazines have deals these days where if you buy one subscription you can get a second free, or very cheap – so you could always do magazine subscriptions for multiple people, or treat yourself!

Lottery tickets/scratchers: Just swing by a 7-11 or other corner-store to pick up some fun chances at winning. And just imagine how excited the recipient will be if they win!

Event tickets: Do you know someone who loves a certain sports team, comedian, artist or play? Search the web to see if they are playing nearby and buy a couple tickets. Giving the gift of an experience like this can be a lot of fun.

Homemade I.O.U.: Maybe someone on your list really likes your homemade lasagna or loves the way you grill a steak – why not write up an I.O.U. for that special homemade dinner or treat for the recipient to redeem whenever they want? You could also do a more elaborate gift and have a whole weekend itinerary planned, or maybe have a certificate redeemable for a full house cleaning?

5 Days Until Christmas - A Nice Clean Christmas

Gift idea: Soap 

Makes a good gift for: Anyone – stocking stuffers, Twelve Days of Christmas gifts

Soap might sound like a crappy Christmas present – akin to getting socks from your grandma (although, for the record, I love getting socks and my mom usually gets me some every year). But soap is one of those things that comes in all shapes and scents, and if you look hard enough (I don’t think I need to plug Etsy again, but if I do, then there you go) you can find soap that is somehow personal for almost anyone. And I doubt I am speaking for myself alone when I say that I don’t buy nice soap for myself – just my standard Dove bar soap for the shower.

Below are some nice soaps I found online, but you by no means have to stick to the internet for soap – check out your local drugstore, Target or even the mall for stores like L’Occitaine, The Body Shop, etc.

Small cherry-blossom scented soap:

Fun Christmas coal-shaped soap:
Coal-shaped soap on Etsy - two for $7.50

6 Days Until Christmas - Fun Phone Accesories

Gift idea: iPhone/smart phone Accessories 

Makes a good gift for: Techies/ Stocking Stuffers/ Twelve Days Gifts

It seems like just about everyone these days (kids and myself included) has an iPhone or some kind of smart phone. Chances are if you appreciate the features of a smart phone, you will also appreciate some of these fun accessories:

Keychain light:
Micro Light Smartphone Pack - comes with two microtools and a stand for smartphones - $5.99

Jelly lens for mobile phone camera:
Jelly Lens - Wide Angle - for phone cameras - $7.50

Macro lens-band for mobile phone camera:

Higher end specialty lens for mobile phone camera:

Mini-microphone speaker: 

Joystick for iPhone:

7 Days Until Christmas - Personalized Keychains

One More Week Until Christmas!

Gift idea: Key chains 

Makes a good gift for: Anyone/ Stocking Stuffers/ Twelve Days Gifts

We all have keys. Kids, adults and everywhere in between. And there is a keychain out there for every interest.

Like puzzles? How about this Rubik’s Cube flashlight keychain:

Or for the photographer in your life, this cute little camera keychain (with working flash and shutter sound-effect) might be perfect:

For the Starwars fan in your life, how about this Lego Yoda flashlight keychain:

Or, for the Lego purist, this simple personalized Lego block might be just the thing:

Last, but not least, for the dog lover, this artist will create a custom dog-keychain that looks like your pooch:

8 Days Until Christmas - Toys for the Brain

Gift idea: Brain teaser puzzles 

Makes a good gift for: Stocking Stuffers/ Twelve Days Gifts

Recipients of all ages and abilities can enjoy one of these brain teaser puzzles. If the particular puzzle is too easy, it quickly becomes a competition to see who else can do it. If the puzzles is challenging, then the opportunity for team work opens up. Lots of toy stores carry these puzzles, and I bought some last Christmas at an office store. Keep your eyes open and you can find neat stuff in lots of stores!

Mini Bamboo Puzzles - set of six for $23.94

Mind Twisters - $7.98/set

9 Days Until Christmas - Sweets for the Sweeties

Gift idea: Candy 

Makes a good gift for: Anyone/ Stocking Stuffers/ Twelve Days Gifts

I certainly don’t have to tell you that everyone loves candy. And if I am wrong, well, you can get that person some carrots or something. I also don’t have to tell you where to shop for candy. You can go to the grocery store, the drug store, Target, See’s, or a local candy shop. Another great place to shop for candy, especially Christmas candy from around the world, is Cost Plus.

Here is just a small selection of the goodies you can expect to find at your local Cost Plus:

Chocolate Coins - $2.99 per bag

Chocolate Reindeer - four for $2.99

Chocolate Santas - ten for $2.99

Chocolate Snowmen - five for $3.99

Hard Candies - $3.99 per bag


10 Days Until Christmas - Candles to Light the Long Nights

Gift idea: Small Candles 

Makes a good gift for: Adults, Teens, Stocking Stuffers 

I love candles, especially well-scented candles (candles that don’t make you gag, but have a nice scent). Candles can make a nice gift on their own, or as part of a self-care package with some bubble bath and nice lotion. All of these little candles have the added bonus of being small enough to fit in a Twelve Days of Christmas Gift Box!

How cute are these small beeswax pinecone candles:
On Etsy - $3.00 each

These small votive candles would be perfect for someone who loves flowers or gardening:
On Etsy - set of eight for $12.00

These mirrored votive candles would look great on a dining-table or a mantel-piece:
National Geographic Store - set of four for $26.00

Big Dipper Wax Works has some of the best beeswax candles, and some of the best scented candles I have found, and this collection of their different scents would make a great gift:
Big Dipper Wax Works - set of nine for $40.00

11 Days Until Christmas - Mini Classic Toys

This Week's Gift Theme: Stocking Stuffers

Gift Idea: Classic Toys and Miniature Classic Toys

Makes a good gift for: Anyone/ Stocking Stuffers/ Twelve Days Gifts

Kids and kids at heart alike can appreciate find a fun little toy or two (or three or four) in their christmas stocking or in their Twelve Days Boxes. The idea here is to spend just a couple bucks on toys that still require some good old fashioned imagination. Most chain toy stores still carry some of these toys – think silly putty, bouncy balls, wind-up toys. And a small mom-and-pop type toy store would probably have an even better selection of classic toys and other small goodies.

You can also find a good selection online:

Silly Putty

From Amazon - $3.99

Parachute men
From Amazon - $9.03

Wind-up toys
From Amazon - $1.99 each

Chinese jump rope
From Amazon - $5.49

From Amazon - $7.79

12 Days Until Christmas - Special Goodies for Christmas Eve

Gift idea: Christmas Eve goodies 

Makes a good gift for: Families with toddlers or young kids

Here at Twelve Days we are hoping to share our family tradition with the world. Another time for traditions is Christmas Eve – the night before Christmas. There is no shortage of children’s books illustrating the beloved story The Night Before Christmas or any other Christmas story. Below I have found a couple of fun pieces that could become part of any family’s Christmas Eve tradition for years to come.

Night Before Christmas Tea Towel - for when you are baking Santa's cookies, perhaps? 
Night Before Christmas Dish Towel -Smithsonian Store - $14.99 

Night Before Christmas Pillow - for reading a couple great Christmas stories before bedtime:
Night Before Christmas Pillow - Smithsonian Store - $165.00 

Cookies for Santa Plate
Cookies for Santa Plate Smithsonian Store - $24.99 

The Greatest Gift – the book that It’s A Wonderful Life was based on 
The Greatest Gift - Smithsonian Store - $55.00

13 Days Until Christmas - A Different Kind of Christmas Sweets

Gift idea: Fire pit and/or s’mores kit 

Makes a good gift for: Families, someone with a sweet tooth

For a lot of people, s’mores around a fire outdoors is a camping memory. But s’mores do not have to be limited to the wilderness. Anyone can make s’mores at home – in the microwave, as I have been known to do, or in the backyard. 

I think that an amazing gift for a family of people would be an outdoor fire pit, the ingredients to make s’mores, and if you really want to include the whole shebang – some skewers, wood and matches.

Here are some nice fire pits:

Halo Fire Pit - $87.59

And if you don’t want to just head to the grocery store to put together a couple bars of chocolate, a bag of marshmallows and a box of graham crackers, you could order one of these s’mores kits:

Hershey’s S'mores Kit- $15.95 

Recchiuti Chocolate S'mores Kit - $23.00 

14 Days Until Christmas - Fun Family Craft Kits

Two More Weeks Until Christmas!

Gift Idea: Arts and Crafts Kits

Makes a good gift for: Families, kids

When its raining or cold outside, I always love to do something crafty around the house. Always have, always will. And when the kids are home for Christmas, doing something creative together can be a great way to spend the blustery winter days. Here are some cute craft kits I have found that will bring a smile and some creative entertainment to the kids on your Christmas-list:

Encourage creativity and family unity with an imaginative kit that lets kids create their own wooden family from seven dolls, 3 pieces of fabric, 3 pieces of felt, craft glue, yarn in 4 colors, and 12 colored pencils:

This kit contains everything they need to create their own, one-of-a-kind snow globe. They'll start with brightly colored polymer clay, and with adult supervision bake it into permanent form. Then they'll follow the simple instructions to insert their sculpture into the clear plastic ball, and add water and glitter. As a final personal touch, they can decorate the cardboard base in any way they can imagine.

Set comes with everything needed--from glitter to glue--and easy-to-follow instructions to build your very own kaleidoscope. Includes cardboard tube, plastic mirror pieces, assorted beads and rhinestones, adhesive paper, foil confetti, craft glue and instructions.

This mini wood version can be built in around an hour or two and can shoot a ball over 15 feet! Adjustable pads on the crossbar allow you to change the trajectory angle. The rope, strung through the middle gives great power to the swing arm.

Catapult Kit - $28.00

15 Days Until Christmas - Brew Your Own Rootbeer

Gift idea: Root Beer Kit 

Makes a good gift for: Families with kids, or kids at heart!

It seems like home-brewing has become a very popular trend. For a more family-friendly tilt to the brew your own trend, a root beer brewing kit would be a great gift that a family could do and enjoy together.

Mr. Rootbeer Root Beer Kit- $26.95 

Brew it Yourself Root Beer - $14.95

16 Days Until Christmas - Puzzles to Keep the Kids Busy

Gift idea: Puzzles

Makes a good gift for: Families, kids

Christmas time means the kids are home from school, and probably need something to do. So why not find a unique puzzle – either in subject or shape, and keep some kids entertained!

Twelve Days of Christmas Puzzle


Twelve Days of Christmas Puzzle - $49.99

3-D Globe Puzzle

Puzzle Ball - The Globe - Uncommon Goods - $40.00

17 Days Until Christmas - Warm Up with some Cocoa

Gift idea: Hot Cocoa Set

Makes a good gift for: Families, anyone, foodies

Christmas time is the time for hot drinks, and what hot drink is more classic than hot chocolate? There are a lot gourmet hot chocolates on the market these days, and a lot of fancy marshmallows and peppermint sticks to dip in your hot chocolate. If you have the time and inclination, you could certainly head out to a nice grocery store (I am thinking Whole Foods or something along those lines) and pick up the makings of your own set: fancy hot chocolate mix, fluffy marshmallows, peppermint sticks, maybe some nice cookies or candies, and then of course, a nice mug (perhaps a Christmas-themed mug, or an initial mug, like one of these.

If you don’t have the desire or time to search out all the bits and pieces of a set, you should check these sets out: 

Hot Chocolate Gift Set - $40.00

Or, if you can think of lots of people on your gift-list who might enjoy some hot-sweet cocoa, or you are planning on having a holiday party and need some favors, you should check out this deal on Etsy where you can get 10 hot-cocoa “cones” for $32.50:

18 Days Until Christmas - Fun Family Games

This Week's Gift Theme: Gifts for Families

Gift idea: Family Friendly Games 

Makes a good gift for: Families, adults and kids alike 

I like to pass along the gift of games that I enjoy playing. Cranium is a great game for groups of all ages. I have played it with kids and with groups of all adults, and it never fails to result in a good time. 
Cranium - $29.99

Another fun idea is a set of Table Topics cards, which range in topics from kid-friendly, to questions for couples and grandparents: 

For an adults-only gift, Cards Against Humanity is a hilarious game that is great for parties. You can buy the card game for someone online as a gift, or you can print the cards out from the website for free and cut out the cards. This game is similar to Apples to Apples which is another great game that can be educational for kids, and just down right funny for adults to play together. Apples to Apples also has an adult version, but I have never played it. 

I came across this game on one of my favorite shopping sites, uncommongoods.com, and this looks like a really awesome game that kids and adults alike could enjoy: http://www.uncommongoods.com/product/spectrix-game

19 Days Until Christmas - Extraordinary RC Toys

Gift idea: Wi-Fi/RC Toys 

Makes a good gift for: Kids and kids at heart, techies

RC cars have come a long way since I was a kid! Two of these fancy toys are controlled by an app on your iphone or ipad! I would be pretty stoked to get any of these toys, and I might even be convinced to share some time behind the wheel with any actual kids who might want to try. Point being, anyone who is not dead inside would have a good time behind the wheel of one of these bad boys:

App-controlled Wi-Fi race car:

RC Helicopter: 
Remote Control Cloud Force Helicopter - $39.99

App-controlled tank:

20 Days Until Christmas - Small Speakers with Big Sound

Gift idea: Small speaker 

Makes a good gift for: Teens, adults, techies

These days most people have a smartphone, but even if you don’t have a smartphone or an iPod, one of these cool little speakers can hook up to your laptop and stream music around your house or outside. We have the jambox, and it never fails to impress people when they find out that all that music is coming from that one little device! Here are some cool little speakers:

Phillips SoundShooter Wireless Bluetooth Speaker - $49.95

21 Days Until Christmas - Techie Toys

Three More Weeks Until Christmas!

Gift idea: Techie toys 

Makes a good gift for: Techies, anyone 

Techies young and old will enjoy these fun tech toys. I don’t know anyone who has any of these fun toys, and at all around $20.00, you don’t have to break the bank to bring a little fun to someone this Christmas.

Have fun at work with a USB-controlled “Desk Pet” 

Think Geek - My USB Desk Pet - $24.99 

Make your paper airplanes propeller powered! 

Think Geek - Electric Paper Airplane Conversion Kit - $19.99 

Do a little infrared shredding with this fun little toy

Think Geek - Electric Air Guitar - $19.99

22 Days Until Christmas - Stay Fully Charged.

Gift idea: iPhone chargers 

Makes a good gift for: Techies

Smartphones are everywhere, and whether its appropriate or not, people are on them all the time. There are so many great apps and accessories for smartphones – but the more you use them, the faster the batteries die! So if you know someone who loves their smartphone, you might want to get them one of these small phone chargers, so they can charge on the go!

23 Days Until Christmas - A Festival of Lights - Flashlights that is!

Gift idea: Cool flashlights 

Makes a good gift for: Techies, men, teens, outdoorsy people 

My soon to be father-in-law LOVES flashlights. He is addicted to head-lamps and flashlight alike. I have found that the more flashlights around the house, the better. One under the kitchen sink. One by the front door, one in each car. So here are some solid flashlight options.

The classic: Mag-Lite

Mag-Lite - $28.20

Old-fashioned design with modern technology: 

Leather-Wrapped Flashlight from Red Envelope - $14.99

High-tech Gorilla Torch – these things are awesome. They are super-bright and can be attached to almost anything:
Joby Gorilla Torch - $29.95 - $59.95




24 Days Until Christmas - Fun Gadgets from Santa

Gift idea: Gadget accessories 

Makes a good gift for: Techies

If someone on your Christmas gift is a gadget-geek, chances are they have a handful of accessories for their gadgets. So I dug a little deeper and found some cool gadget accessories that will hopefully be new and impressive for the techie on your list!

For the artist or errant doodler, this stylus and brush for touch screen devices looks really cool and unique: 
Sensu Brush - $39.99

For the iPad lover on your list, this super-sleek iPad stand would look great on a modern desk:
Magnus magnetic iPad stand - $49.95

For the high-impact gadget user, or someone who travels a lot, these Ready Clip USB Mini Cable Kits would make a great gift:
Aviiq Ready Clips - $19.99-$29.99

25 Days Until Christmas - A Jump Start on New Year's Resolutions

This Week's Gift Theme: Gifts for techies/gadget lovers 

Gift idea: Pedometer 

Makes a good gift for: Someone who is into fitness, or looking to get in better shape (new year’s resolutions are just around the corner) and/or someone who likes little techie gadgets

A while ago I read an article about how a sedentary life style is bad for your health, and how sitting at a desk all day, even if you go to the gym or go for a run, is not enough movement to keep you healthy. So I started to wear an old pedometer that had been sitting in the closet for a couple years. It was big and bulky and kept getting caught on things. So I looked in to what new technology was out there, and I found the Fitbit.

I got one of these little guys:
The fitbit One will track your movement, sleep, calories and much more - $99.95

The Zip, also by fitbit, will track your steps, distance and calories - $59.95

The iPod Nano also has a pedometer built in, so you can have some music while you walk: 

Apple iPod Nano - $149.99

All three of these little gadgets will easily fit in a Twelve Days of Christmas Gift Box

26 Days Until Christmas - Wine Tools Everyone Could Use.

Gift idea: Wine accessories 

Makes a good gift for: Foodies, entertainers, wine-lovers

I like wine, and I like gadgets. Here are a couple crossover ideas for the gadget-loving-wine-lover on your Christmas list:

Automatic wine opener: We have friends who have one of these, and it is quite the party trick. I think these things are pretty fancy!

Travel-size aerator: I think this thing is both ridiculous and cool. A travel-sized aerator that comes with a travel case? I can’t imagine busting this out at a restaurant or packing it for a trip, but I can think of at least one person who would. 

Wine tool gift-set: I think this is a really cute wine-tool gift-set, and it comes in a wine-bottle shaped case, to make it easy to store in your wine rack.

27 Days Until Christmas - A Unique Gift for Wine-Lovers

Gift idea: Wine coaster 

Makes a good gift for: Wine lovers, entertainers 

Maybe everyone who comes to dinners at your house is the perfect wine-pourer, but that certainly cannot be said for my house, or for myself. Whenever I pour a glass of wine, I always have to try to catch the bit that dribbles down the outside of the bottle – the same bit that will end up on your dining room table or counter if you don’t catch it. To solve this problem I started putting a small salad plate on the table to set the wine on, but that is really not the classy solution. The classy solution is a wine coaster. Nice restaurants use them, and for about $12.00, you can give the gift of class (and no wine drips on tablecloths) to the wine lover on your Christmas list. 

Basic, Classic (and the one on my dining room table): 

Recycled Windowpane Wine Coaster: 
Uncommon Goods Recycled Windowpane Wine Coaster - $60.00 

Handcrafted Pewter Wine Coaster: 

28 Days Until Christmas - have some cheese with that wine!

The clock is ticking - four more weeks until Christmas!

Gift idea: Cheese board (with built in cheese tools) 

Makes a good gift for: The host or hostess in your life, the cheese-lover in your life

Last year we got a really cute one as a house-warming gift, and I enjoy bringing it out every time we entertain. It is really convenient to have the cheese knives stored right in the board, so you don’t have to go hunting for them. I don’t remember where ours was from, but here are a couple cute ones I found:

Festiva Cheese Board with compartment for four stainless steel cheese-tools (included) - $29.99

Pear-Shaped Cheese Board with compartment for three stainless steel cheese knives and a wine-stopper - $39.99

This deluxe cheese-board set comes with three wooden-handled cheese knives, three porcelain cheese-markers and a wet-erase pen for the cheese-markers - $55.95

29 Days Until Christmas - put all those corks to good use!

Gift idea: Wine cork trivets 

Makes a good gift for: Wine-lovers, entertainers, crafters

I am pretty sure I am not the only wine drinker/crafter out there who can’t stand to throw away wine corks thinking “I will use these for something.” Earlier this year, I actually did use a bunch of saved wine corks to make a corkboard. But I still have more corks, and seem to be drinking the wine faster than I can craft with them. Even if you don’t save every cork, most people will set aside the corks from special bottles of wine as a keepsake. Well, why not put them to use? Here are a couple great sets where you can take corks you already have, and turn them into a trivet for hot pots!

Perpetual Kid -$14.49 

Bed Bath and Beyond -$17.99 

Red Envelope-$19.95 

Red Envelope -$49.95 

30 Days Until Christmas - charming wine charms.

30 days until Christmas already? Believe it or not, in just over five short weeks December 25th will have come and gone - are you getting ready yet? Be sure to check out the earlier countdown to Christmas gift ideas, and to check back on the blog for gift ideas that will fit in Twelve Days of Christmas Gift Boxes

Today's Gift idea: Wine charms 

Makes a good gift for: Wine lovers, entertainers

If you entertain a lot, or just have a couple people over for dinner regularly, wine charms are a must have to keep people from snagging other people’s glasses. Wine charms are certainly not a new idea, but I found a couple cute sets that I think would be a crowd pleaser at any get-together and would make a great gift for a wine lover and/or someone who likes to entertain.

A cute idea for gift giving would be to pair a set of wine charms with a nice bottle of wine, or even some nice wine glasses. Don’t forget that these little charms would easily fit in a Twelve Days of Christmas Gift Box!

Set of twelve felt flower-shaped wine charms in different colors:
Crate and Barrel - $5.95 

Set of 6 rubbery-vinotags that can be written on: 

Vinotags - $10.00 

Set of 10 personalized metal wine charms and 1 wine bottle tag:

Etsy - $32.00

31 Days Until Christmas - a gift anticipating spring time.

Don't forget to show your support for small, local business today and take part in Small Business Saturday which is taking place today, Saturday November 24th! Head to your local business district and support some small businesses, or shop on-line at a small business, like Twelve Days!

Today's Gift idea: Picnic basket 

Makes a good gift for: The special someone in your life, a couple, foodies or wine-lovers (whats a good picnic without wine?) 

In most parts of the country, Christmas time is not the best time of the year for a picnic, but its always nice to have something to look forward to, like a nice spring picnic. You could give someone just a picnic basket itself, or a basket full of picnic-necessities.

Here is a nice basic picnic basket:

This one is vintage and has a handmade liner:
Etsy - $39.95

This one comes with service for four:
Amazon.com - $79.95

This one is a little fancier, a little bigger and also comes with service for four:
Amazon.com - $89.99
I have always thought these plastic wine-glasses were cool, and they would make a great addition to any picnic basket: 
Amazon.com - set of four for $12.95

32 Days Until Christmas - class up your next gift of wine

This weeks gift theme: gifts for wine-lovers

Gift idea: Leather Wine Carrier 

Makes a good gift for: Foodies, wine-lovers 

Once you become of wine-appreciating age (which, in my opinion, is different from wine-drinking age) a good bottle of wine is always a nice gift – whether it be for someone you know well, or perhaps as a host/ess gift for someone you might not know so well. Of course a bottle of wine does not need a bag or bow, but if you want to make the gift of grapes a little more fancy, why not consider a leather wine carrier like this one:

Red Envelope - $59.95

These carriers are super-swanky looking, and would be a great gift for someone who likes to bring their own wine to dinner or on picnics, or for someone who just appreciates fine leather goods. Either way, I think getting a bottle of wine in one of these leather wine carriers would be a swanky gift for the wine connoisseur (or just wannabe connoisseur) on your Christmas list.

33 Days Until Christmas - a pedestal for for holiday goodies

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours! 

Gift idea: Cake stand 

Makes a good gift for: The baker in your life (or the host or hostess in your life who might want to dress up a store-bought cake!) 

Cake stands seem to be somewhat popular these days – I see them in antique stores and in boutiques, and in lots of home stores. A cake stand would make a great gift for the baker or hostess in your life, and if you are looking to make the stand extra special, you could always present it with a cake already on it! For my birthday this past September, my soon to be mother-in-law baked me a delicious German chocolate cake, and found a box big enough to put the cake on a cake stand, and presented me with a delicious and functional gift! 

So, here are a couple cute cake stands in a range of prices: 

34 Days Until Christmas - cuter cleaning!

Gift idea: Tea towels 

Makes a good gift for: Someone who likes to spend time in the kitchen, or just someone who likes to have a good-looking kitchen

In an effort to be better to mother-earth and use fewer disposable things, like paper towels, I have been using my kitchen towels a lot more frequently lately, and I feel like I am always running out of clean ones. A lot of mine are rather dingy looking, so I would love to have the older ones to do the work (like mopping up dog-drool and spilled sauce) and have some nice pretty ones to hang on the oven door. Etsy has tea towels in every color of the rainbow and every imaginable pattern, Target has some cute ones out now, and Williams Sonoma and Sur La Table always have a good selection too. I know Williams Sonoma sells aprons, hot-pads and towels in matching patterns, so you could always put together a little kitchen-gift set with matching, or complementary goodies.

Here are some that caught my eye: 

Target - set of three for $7.00

Williams-Sonoma set of four for $9.95

Williams-Sonoma - set of four for $19.95

Etsy - one yellow and one grey tea towel for $23.50

Etsy - set of three for $37.95

35 Days Until Christmas - make any oven a pizza (or bread) oven!

5 More Weeks Until Christmas!

Gift idea: Pizza (or bread) stone 

Makes a good gift for: Anyone who loves to cook or who loves pizza, and for the bread baker on your list.

Having a ceramic pizza stone in your oven will really up your ability to make a delicious homemade pizza and/or some crusty bread. The nice thing about a pizza stone is that even if you don’t have two ovens, you can just leave it on the bottom rack in your oven year-round. They are easy to take care of and easy to use, and make a thoughtful gift.  

This pizza stone is a standard size that should fit in most ovens, and can be left in the oven during other types of cooking and baking.

This pizza stone is actually a set of four smaller stones, which would be easier to move and maneuver than one big one, especially for someone with limited mobility or a smaller than standard size oven.
Amazon.com - $32.46

You could even pair a pizza stone with a pizza cookbook, like one of these:

Amazon.com - $11.96

a pizza peel, like one of these:

Amazon.com - $15.99

Amazon.com - $21.06

36 Days Until Christmas - a place for all the holiday treats!

Gift idea: Cake stand 

Makes a good gift for: The baker in your life (or the host or hostess in your life who might want to dress up a store-bought cake!)

I love housewares. I also love cake stands (oh, and I love to bake). Anyway, cake stands seem to be somewhat popular these days – I see them in antique stores and in boutiques, and in lots of home stores. A cake stand would make a great gift for the baker or hostess in your life, and if you are looking to make the stand extra special, you could always present it with a cake already on it! For my birthday this past September, my soon to be mother-in-law baked me a delicious German chocolate cake, and found a box big enough to put the cake on a cake stand, and presented me with a delicious and functional gift!

So, here are a couple cute cake stands in a range of prices:

This is the one I got for my birthday:

Lenox Butterfly Meadow Pedestal Cakestand - $49.95

A clear-glass cake stand is very classic, it can be part of an everyday kitchen, and also part of an elaborate holiday spread: 

This white enamel cake stand is very simple and elegant, and just a bit retro: 

This stoneware cake stand is nice to look at, and would be at home in most kitchens: 

37 Days Until Christmas - function and fun in the kitchen

Gift idea: Fun kitchen tools 

Makes a good gift for: Someone who likes to cook, someone who appreciates modern design, or maybe a college student or someone who just moved out on their own

At six bucks a piece, these fun, modern kitchen tools would make a great gift for someone who likes to cook, someone who appreciates modern design, or maybe a college student or someone who just got their own place. 

You could make a set of all four or just a couple of these tools, and then maybe find a fun crock or big jar to put them all in. Maybe include a couple of your favorite family recipes or a cookbook too.

The Curiosity Shoppe at Target has a fun line of products, including lots of home and kitchen wares.

38 Days Until Christmas - measuring up.

Gift idea: Earthenware measuring cups and spoons 

Makes a good gift for: Anyone who likes to cook or bake, or who likes nice design

Williams Sonoma is carrying a new line of “Bistro Francais” styled kitchen tools, and the measuring cups, measuring spoons and set of prep bowls caught my eye. All of these tools are made of earthenware, but are microwave and dishwasher safe. I know I have metal measuring spoons and measuring cups – but I think these would be great for a high-use kitchen because a lot of the handles on my metal measuring cups are bent from use – and I don’t think that would happen with these. They look sturdy and are easy on the eyes too! I think all three would make a nice set. If you look on the Williams Sonoma website, there are a few other pieces that match, as well as a dinnerware set with the matching blue stripe.

Bistro Francais Measuring Cups
Williams-Sonoma- $24.95
Bistro Francais Measuring Spoons
Williams-Sonoma - $14.95
Bistro Francais Prep Bowls

Williams-Sonoma - $12.95 

39 Days Until Christmas - spice it up a bit!

Gift idea: Spice sets – magnetic and otherwise 

This week's gift theme: gifts for the cook or foodie in your life.

Makes a good gift for: The foodie or cook in your life

I have had a crush on these spice-sets on Etsy for a long time, but having quite the spice collection myself, I have always wanted to give one of these sets as a gift.

Gneiss Spice on Etsy sells spice-sets, salt-sets and empty sets of bottles so you can make your own. The lids of the bottles are magnetic so you can stick them on your fridge, or you can buy a wall-plate from her to mount your spices right on the wall. I just think they are so cute, and its is such a good gift idea for anyone who likes to cook, or maybe someone who just went away to college or just moved out on their own. The sets range in price based on the size of the set.

Also, if you got a set of twelve spices, you could put one spice in each Twelve Days of Christmas Gift Box!

Spice Sets:

Salt Sets:

40 Days Until Christmas - brew your own!

Gift idea: Brew your own – beer, cider or whiskey 

Makes a good gift for: ADULTS, men

I have always wanted to try my hand at brewing my own beer, and I know multiple people who do brew their own. If you know someone who loves beer, cider or whiskey, one of these kits would make a great gift.

Brew your own beer kits: 

Red Envelope Craft Beer Home Brew Kit - $49.95 

Mr. Beer Home Brew Kits - $39.95 - $99.95 

Brew your own hard cider: 

Mr. Beer Cider Kits - $54.95 - $145.48 

Age your own whiskey:

Woodinville Whiskey Age Your Own Whiskey Kit - $149.99

41 Days Until Christmas - personalized sports-fan glasses

Gift idea: Personalized mugs/glassware 

Makes a good gift for: Him, sports fans

For the guy (or gal) who likes to drink a beer while he watches his sports, a personalized mug with his favorite sports team and his name (or a set of mugs) would be a great, personal gift. Both West Elm and Pottery Barn have mugs that can be personalized with just a name or initials. A monogrammed pitcher and set of glasses would also be a great gift for a guy who likes to host poker or game nights. 

Set of four beer mugs or pilsner glasses:
West Elm Beer Glasses or Mugs - set of four $16.00

Pub-style Beer Mugs:
Pub Beer Mug - $9.00 ($16.00 with personalization)

Monogrammable Beer Pitcher:
Pottery Barn - $15.00 ($22.00 if personalized)

MLB Glassware:
Pottery Barn - $24.00 each (free personalization) 

NFL Glassware: 

Pottery Barn - $18.00-24.00 each (free personalization) 

Vintage NFL Antique-Silver Beer Stein:
Pottery Barn - $69.00 (free personalization) 

42 Days Until Christmas - bring a little of the bar home for him

6! Count-em: 6 weeks until Christmas!

Gift idea: Wall mounted bottle-opener 

Makes a good gift for: Men, beer-enthusiasts

We have one of these bad boys mounted on the wall in our kitchen, and it really comes in handy. No need to keep track of the bottle-opener when one is mounted right on the wall! Wall mounted bottle openers come in all kinds of styles – some with soda names on them, some are plain, and of course some have beer brands on them, so you can get one that fits the recipients taste:

Etsy - $35.00

Amazon - $14.00

Homebrewers.com has a big selection of different styles, including this make-your-own bottle-opener:

You could pair a wall mounted bottle opener with a selection of nice bottled beers and sodas, or even have it accompany a subscription to a beer-of-the-month-club!

43 Days Until Christmas - make the holidays smell better

Gift idea: Perfume or cologne 

Makes a good gift for: Anyone – men, women, teens

Some people, like my mom, have a certain perfume or cologne that they have used for ever, and will never change. My mom has hers, and my Grampa was definitely an Old Spice man. But not everyone is like that. Some people like to experiment, or like certain types of scents. These little gift-sets would make a great gift for someone who likes to try new things, or is undecided in the scent department.

For the gents:

Sephora Favorites for Men - $42.00

For the ladies:

A solid perfume is also a nice gift for ladies – much easier to carry in a purse than liquid perfume!

Another plus is that these smaller-sized bottles will fit in Twelve Days of Christmas Gift Boxes – to make the Twelve Days of Christmas smell great!

44 Days Until Christmas - a gift for the responsible only!

Gift idea: Pocket knife/survival kit 

Makes a good gift for: Responsible adults (or near-adults), outdoorsy people

My dad always, and I mean always, had his Swiss Army Knife with him. It had everything from a toothpick to a saw on it, and it came in handy many, many times. Whether you carry one with you on a daily basis, or just have one handy around the house (and to take on camping trips) a multi-tool is just handy to have around. And for the person who already has a Swiss Army Knife or Leatherman tool, a survival kit would make a good present for someone who likes to camp, hike, or just always be prepared! Maybe it’s the Girl Scout in me, but the survivor kit might be something that ends up in my trunk!

Classic Swiss Army knife:
From L.L. Bean - $85.00

L.L. Bean - $34.50

Ultimate Survivor Kit:
L.L. Bean - $55.00


45 Days Until Christmas - somewhere to put that Christmas cash

Gift idea: Wallet 

Makes a good gift for: Him – men, teens

You can shop for a wallet at any department store or men’s boutique, but Etsy also has tons of cute wallets and some very well-crafted leather wallets. A way to make the gift of a wallet a little more fun or personal is to put some gift-cards or cash in it!

I found some great wallets on etsy, but you can certainly find some nice ones at department stores or boutiques. Here are some nice ones I came across:

Fun robot print:
Etsy - $20.00

Leather wood-grain print:
Etsy - $17.00
Etsy - $16.80 

Classic leather bi-fold: 
Etsy - $59.00

46 Days Until Christmas - entertainment to last the whole year

Gift idea: At home entertainment 

This week's gift theme: Gifts for him.

For the next seven days I will post ideas for gifts that should please the man or men in your life. 

Makes a good gift for: Dad, husband, teen, tv-lovers, techies

In a stroke of what I thought was genius, I decided to get Jonathon a Wii for Christmas a couple years ago. He ended up exchanging the Wii for a Play Station 3, and that PS3 has turned in to a glorified Netflix-watching machine. If only I had known that the video-game loving kid in him had grown up, I would have just gotten him an Apple TV or a Roku Box.

Apple TV

$49.00 - $99.00

You could also pair one of these tv-boxes with a subscription to Netflix or Hulu Plus. Both systems sync with both Netflix and Hulu Plus.

Netflix - $7.99 for one month - $95.88 for one year 

Hulu Plus - $7.99 for one month - $95.88 for one year 

47 Days Until Christmas - a classic tote for her

Gift idea: L.L. Bean Boat and Tote Bag 

Makes a good gift for: Her

My mom got me one of these Boat and Tote bags when I was in college, and I still use it all the time. These bags are well made and timelessly-stylish, which makes these bags appropriate for teens and women alike.

The classic Boat and Tote comes in lots of colors and four sizes:
L.L. Bean Boat and Tote Bag - $20.95 - $38.95

For something a little more personal, you can also have the bag customized with the recipients initials or monogram:
Custom Boat and Tote - $37.95 - $57.95

48 Days Until Christmas - one cute little purse

Gift idea: Coin-purse style purse 

Makes a good gift for: Mom, grandma, wife, girlfriend, teen, girl

Lately I have been sporting a smaller purse, in a never-ending effort to carry less stuff with me. My purse is not quite this small, but a very efficient woman (or girl who has not much to carry) could carry this purse as her everyday purse, and any woman could use it as a purse for going out on the town. This purse would also be cute for a teen or younger girl.

49 Days Until Christmas - take a look!

7 More Weeks!

Gift idea: Hand mirror

Makes a good gift for: mom, grandma, wife, girlfriend, teens, girls

From old-fashioned to modern, there is a hand mirror for every lady out there, and I think every lady should have a hand mirror. What a unique, feminine gift for a special lady or teen in your life. Here are some unique ones I have found:

This crystal mirror from Z Gallery is really modern yet still classic:

Z Gallery - $19.95

This faux-antique mermaid mirror available on Amazon is nautical yet feminine:

This butterfly mirror, also available on Amazon looks straight out of a fairy tale:
From Amazon.com - $24.45

And this laser cut mirror from Etsy is not only unique, but edgy and feminine at the same time:
Etsy - $30.00

50 Days Until Christmas - pack it up in a train case

Gift idea: Train case (makeup case) 

Makes a good gift for: Women and young women

I got a train case for Christmas when I was a teen, and I loved having a grown-up looking container to put all my makeup in. I think any teen or woman who has a collection of makeup would enjoy having either a vintage train case, or a more modern one to store their makeup in and/or to use when travelling. 

You could even put some eyeshadows, nail-polish, lipstick or lipgloss in Twelve Days of Christmas Gift Boxes to tie-in with this gift. 

Etsy has a great selection of vintage cases like this one: 

Or this one:

Other stores and websites sell more modern cases too: 

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