My grandmother taught me to crochet when I was young, and I pull out that skill each Christmas. I’ve learned to make inexpensive–but really cute–scarves and hats. Each Christmas season I look forward to pulling out my bag of yarn, putting on a Christmas movie, and crocheting away in the evenings. Crocheting and knitting are simple skills anyone can learn!
This may be the very best time to dive into holiday shopping. Pour yourself a cup of coffee (or glass of wine) and log into your computer today, well before shopping anxiety starts to erode your festive spirit. Here is our list for 2018, filled with lots of intriguing holiday gift ideas. Enjoy and please let us know what your grown and flown kids have on their lists.

You want your kids to heed wise parental advice, but you’re not there to nag them about cleaning their clothes. Solution: a copy of “Do Your Laundry Or You’ll Die Alone.” This beautiful, clever little book by Becky Blades includes 270 wise, wry gems of parental advice, like “You can tell a lot about a man by the way he treats the server at Applebees.” (The newer hardback version is available for $9.29 on Amazon.)
College students spend long hours at their desk studying and that’s why good lighting like the TaoTronics Elune TT-DL07 Dimmable Rotatable LED Desk Lamp is so important.  This model uses the latest LED technology and features 4 lighting modes and 5 levels of brightness to create the perfect lighting environment.  This elegant and ergonomic desk lamp features a 180-degree rotatable head, a 140-degree swing arm, and a rotatable base to give your student complete flexibility in placement of the light.  Its LED lights provide a vision-friendly, full-range lighted area with no dark spots, ghosting, or glare.  It has a built-in 1-hour auto-off timer and even a 5V/2A charging port for portable electronics.  This gift will be with them their whole college experience and most likely long after thanks to long-lasting LED lights and a 1-Year warranty.

What's the perfect present for someone in college? Boy gifts, girl gifts, grad gifts, going-away gifts…the range of occasions and options can make anyone's head spin. After all, everyone has different tastes. You need to think about what kind of gift your recipient would appreciate most. Is there something they would enjoy but would never buy for themselves? Would they like a novelty gift that will be good for a laugh? Or should you go with a functional gift that can make their life easier?
1. Care packages—Do-it-yourself care packages for students can include things like socks, single-serve soups, beauty or grooming products, gift cards, or even cold, hard cash. Basically, anything you think the student in your life will appreciate is fair game. The amount you spend is up to you. (If you're short on time, you might want to consider a pre-packaged gift basket full of goodies.)
I often give homemade gifts for Christmas. I make homemade biscotti- almond or chocolate dried cherry and also include homemade hot cocoa mix or Russian tea mix. I have made homemade butterscotch and hot fudge sauce and given them in nice mason jars as gifts. Very cheap to do- buy butter, sugar and cream at Aldi’s. Everyone raves. I have also given wonderful scented soap that I carry home from Florida every year. I have also made Lebkuchen and strudel for gifts. My kids always get lip balm, a toothbrush and a movie pass in their stockings’ – it is a Chrismas tradition. I also go to resale shops and find really neat cookbooks for my daughter. They aren’t high priced and I am recycling them to another cook. I shopped at Sahalie last Christmas and got my DD and DDIL beautiful gloves for ten dollars each- free shipping and no tax!I like to give something that can be used and not end up on the table at the garage sale in a few years.
10. Business card holder. Your graduate might be working for a non-profit or for corporate America. Either way, they'll probably have business cards they'll want to hand out at conferences, meetings, and other business events. Consider buying a small, nice, classic business card holder—some can even be personalized—as an inexpensive but highly useful graduation present.

Make him the coolest dude in campus. “Guys like sports and they like wearing sports stuff, so it’s perfect,” said University of Iowa junior Madison Offenburger. Whether it’s your college mascot or his favorite professional team, your guy will surely sport his gift all day, everyday. Get yourself something to match to make it even cuter. Now that’s what I call #couplegoals.


Stitch Fix is my new favorite for college girls. After taking a personal style survey, a Stich Fix stylist will choose five pieces to send to your daughter. The $20 styling fee is applied to the clothes she decides to keep and can return the rest with free shipping.  Stitch Fix comes in petite and plus sizes so this could be a godsend for hard-to-fit young women.

Going to college means getting up and motivated for early morning classes, often after a late night of doing what college is really about - homework, right? It’s easy for students to forget to set an alarm, or to select PM instead of AM before passing out, from all that learning. A smart alarm clock can be programmed ahead of time to match their class schedule. On Monday it knows to go off at 7 in the morning, but on Tuesday it lets them sleep it off till 10.
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