With just a few days left until Christmas, you may be frantically searching for some last-minute gift ideas. Our writers got together to share a few of ours.

Favorite Things – I have some friends that I’ve been giving gifts to for a long time and after many years of gift giving, I feel like I’m out of new ideas. This year I’ve decided to give some of the things that I like best in hopes that they will love them, too. Some of my favorite things are:

  • Oven hot mitts that do the job well.

  • Measuring spoons with easy-to-read measurements (because even though I have four tablespoons, I only have one ¼ teaspoon.)

  • Susie Larson’s Devotional Books – Blessings for the Morning and Blessings for the Evening.

  • Yes to Carrots Body Butter – available at Target and Amazon.com.

  • Lightly scented candles – I love them, but I hate spending money on them.

  • External portable battery chargers for cell phones – available in a variety of sizes and price ranges. Perfect for people who camp, might need a charge when flying overseas OR never seem to have a charged cell phone.

What are some of your favorite things? Perhaps your friends or family members might want in on the fun. – Nancy Holte

Are You Creative? – These are just a few ideas I’ve used to help create a personal gift for my friends and family:

  • Look through your friends’ Pinterest page and see if there is something you can make for them!  So many people like to pin items, but rarely get around to following through with them.

  • Make something homemade that you love. Last year a friend gave me salted caramel (something like this!) and it was delicious!

  • When thinking about my grandparents, gift giving either gets boring or really hard.  This year we are working with their changing life situations to give a gift of great meaning. Can they make it out of the house to use that gift certificate for a great experience, or would it be better if you made them freezer meals? Perhaps they are living alone now. What would help them feel connected to others?

I hope you have a wonderful time coming up with a gift that will connect with your friends and family. –Jill Moltumyr

Find a fun theme to focus on – I absolutely love themed gift baskets, especially when they are tailored toward the interests or hobbies of the person receiving the gift. Here are a few ideas:

  • Help them relax with a spa-themed gift. Grab a loofah or bright washcloths, lotions, salt or sugar scrubs, and cozy slippers for an easy gift. Worried about breaking the bank? I’ve even found great-smelling candles packaged in glass jars at the dollar store. I actually love to make spa-related gifts at home; my favorite things to make include this minty lip balm, bath salts like these orange peppermint bath salts or lemongrass bath salts, and variations of sugar scrubs made from things you probably have in your kitchen.

  • Give the gift of dinner. I love to go to places like HomeGoods or TJ Maxx and find a cute colored colander to fill with fun items like kitchen towels, special pastas, sauces, olive oils and garlic bread mixes from their grocery section, and new kitchen utensils like a pasta spoon.

  • Put together a basket of homemade goodies. I recently made a care package with a hot cocoa theme: hot cocoa mix (this recipe makes a huge batch and only requires a few simple ingredients) labeled in a cute Mason jar, red-and-white striped paper straws and cute napkins (easily found in the dollar section at Target or your local dollar store), marshmallows, and maybe some Christmas cookies packaged in cellophane printed with Christmas patterns.

  • Make it a movie night. Grab a new release movie — or an old favorite that you’d recommend — and pair it with microwave popcorn, movie-sized treats, and more. Look for plastic tubs to put all the treats in (I’ve found them at Target). It’s also fun to purchase a gift certificate to the local movie theater so your recipient can enjoy a night in and a night out.

Whether it’s books, baking, or barbeque, creating a gift centered around a theme is a fun way to personalize a last-minute gift. — Kristin Demery

Two for the price of one – When a person is difficult to buy gifts for or doesn’t really need anything, the gift challenge can seem even more difficult. There are many charitable organizations that sell products as a means of self-sustaining. Often, the gifts they make available are great for the recipient, while also helping the organization and the person who actually made the item. Let me give you one great example.

Feed My Starving Children is a non-profit Christian organization committed to feeding God’s children hungry in body and spirit. The approach is simple: children and adults in the U.S. volunteer and hand-pack dehydrated meals specifically formulated for malnourished children, and FMSC ships those meals to nearly 70 countries around the world. Some meals go to countries affected by natural disaster, some go to places during economic despair, and some to refugees or areas affected by conflict and war. Requests for meals to be sent to Ebola-affected areas have increased exponentially in recent months, and the need has never been greater. FMSC has consistently received the highest grades awarded for accountability and transparency. 92 percent of donations are spent on feeding programs. Their current meal price is 22 cents per meal, and 96% of all the meals sent safely reach their intended destinations out of 850 million+ in their history.

The FMSC Marketplace is a great place to shop for items that will be a double-blessing. Christmas items are available, such as hand-made ornaments, nativity scenes, and decor items. There are also fair-trade accessories, jewelry, home decor, kitchen items, coffee, apparel, and more. Each item’s country of origin and even tradespeople are often explained, so you know where part of your purchase goes, along with knowing that your purchase will also supply meals for hungry people. For instance, the cheapest piece of jewelry is a bracelet from the Phillipines and costs $6 (and provides 20 meals). There are lots of choices of marketplace items in various price ranges.

Another gift idea for those who don’t “need anything” is FMSCs Christmas Hope Campaign, where meaningful financial gifts can provide nourishing meals to people in need all around the world. By giving $10, $25, $50, $80, $220 or even $500 in someone’s name, hope can be brought to a child, a family, an orphanage, a school, or even a whole community! Make your donation online, then download, print, sign, and give the provided “Christmas Hope” cards to your loved ones – sharing the news that you made a donation in their honor. It’s a meaningful gift that is a two-for-one blessing.

FMSC also has volunteer opportunities around the country in several locations, and offers “mobile-pack” options as well. Investing a couple of hours with your family or friends packing meals for hungry people is so rewarding! — Tabby Finton

We hope some of these ideas may have given you just the right spark for what’s left on your Christmas list! Think creatively and have yourself a Merry little Christmas!

BTG Team

Author BTG Team

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