It’s Christmas time again! Whoot!
This morning, I woke up to the sound of my mother playing Christmas carols. Specifically the classic Mariah Carey “All I Want For Christmas Is You”. She’s not gonna stop until January and you know what? That’s just the way life should be!
But you know what else comes with Christmas?! Christmas presents! And I adore presents!
This is your comprehensive guide to figuring out what to get that special woman in your life this holiday season and, as always, remember that if you see one thing on this list and you don’t think it’s enough, try combining things on the list.
So, for the women in your life, I’m going to give you some ideas for Christmas presents. If they bring a smile to her face, it’s 100% me! If she hates it, well, totally your fault!
Christmas Presents for Her 2017: Jamaican Edition
1) Western Union
There is no gift more beloved by a Jamaican woman than Western Union money during Christmas time. Nothing more that you could do for the woman of your dreams than sending her cold hard foreign cash.
I know, it sounds unromantic but Jamaicans really do dig this sort of thing. And there is no culture that we enjoy better than having to join the long Western Union line on Christmas Eve. Or really, for the entire time of Christmas. After all, there’s house painting to be done, eyelashes to put on, and nails to be done. Hell, they’ve even made it easier and now allow for direct deposits to your bank account!
Christmas is a joyous and glorious time of the year and foreign currency just makes it a little nicer!
You can get her chocolates, get her chocolates. If she likes Christmas fruit cake, she can get one from my Mother (best cakes ever!). If she likes candles, some lovely candles will do. If she’s like me and is a huge tea addict, some really great teas with a great selection would be lovely. Or if she likes coffee, get her great coffee. Or maybe even a Starbucks Jamaica gift card!
People don’t have space to store all the rubbish you see in stores. Maybe she doesn’t need all those things. So don’t buy her all those things if you know she’s the kind of person that enjoys something but perhaps wouldn’t purchase it for herself. A treat.
And as always, because we are Jamaican, a Royal Dansk set of cookies is always going to be welcome. After all, at least this time she’ll be sure there are no sewing supplies in there!
3) An Experience
Experiences apparently last longer than things that you purchase for people. I don’t know who came up with that but there are many studies that support that. And I’m here to let you know that there are many people out there who prefer going somewhere or doing something or getting involved in an experience more than they prefer receiving a tangible gift.
So, even if the experience is a movie ticket, carrying them out to that movie is going to be amazing for them.
If you combine that experience with a small gift in No. 2 – Consumables, you have an amazing present! So, if you think through the experience, you could get a movie on Netflix, or a DVD, or carry her out to the movies + buy her candy + a packet of popcorn and you now have the gift of a MOVIE NIGHT.
In combining the gifts for the experience, what you now have is an amazing opportunity to say and show that you’ve thought through the entire gift without spending “think through it money”.
4) A Spa Gift Certificate
Guys, never underestimate how amazing a spa gift certificate is for the woman who you care about. Whether it’s your mother, a girlfriend, a sister, a girl on the side, everybody appreciates the ability to get pampered and to take care of themselves, especially if they are the kind of person that takes care of others.
It isn’t a lazy gift so don’t feel frustrated that it shows that you haven’t given thought to the gift. But especially for people who take care of others, it’s a really relaxing way for them not to feel as though they are imposing on anybody by having received the gift of perhaps a manicure, a pedicure, a facial, or a massage. You’d be so surprised how lovely it is to receive something that doesn’t need her to do anything else. And you’d be so surprised how many women have never received a mani or a pedi before and therefore will really enjoy the experience.
It doesn’t have to be fancy, and it doesn’t even have to be a gift certificate. You could just pay for the opportunity for her to get her nails or hair done. Don’t take for granted that every girl in Jamaica gets that done so you don’t have to worry about that. It’s a lovely gift anyway.
Don’t, however, get your significant other something for their hobby. I know you’re going to feel committed to the idea that your girlfriend likes Pokémon and you could, therefore, get her something for Pokémon. But I suggest you don’t do that.
Somebody who enjoys their hobbies is somebody who likely knows the best things for their hobbies is already planning to buy those things or already has the things you want to buy for them. Unless they have explicitly said that they want a particular gift, it is going to be best for you to steer clear of their hobbies. They know what they want best there and you run the risk of giving them a gift that they’ll just smile at and then put away in the cupboard.
5) An Anker Portable Charger
I’m very specific with this one because I very specifically benefitted from buying one. I think these things are amazing. Smartphones nowadays don’t last particularly long. And while the battery life of the smart phone is meant to last all day, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and general telephone life mean that her battery is likely to last only a few hours and not the whole day.
So, a portable charger, and I recommend the Anker power banks since I have multiples of them, are an amazing way to extend your battery life. One that I have gives me 4 full charges and can charge my iPad as well. So do consider a gift of safety that comes with a power bank.
Getting one with a flashlight means that it also provides additional safety with lighting. I know one of mine has emergency flashing lights as well just in case something happens, something to really consider when buying these things
You can get the woman of your dreams, or your mother, sister, or girl on the side a game.
UNO is a really good game to get. But also consider Jamaican games like Ludo and Labrish. Or games that create fights like Monopoly or Taboo. And even new decks of cards for Jamaican beloved games like Kalooki.
You can think through these sorts of gifts. Is this somebody who likes to spend time with others? Do they like to have parties and connections with other people? A new game for them would be a good way to continue that cycle of getting people over to their house and with them and lead to them enjoying themselves. And so that bears in mind that you are getting this gift for someone who enjoys having company over.
Plan a getaway. You’d be so surprised that, apart from the experience I’ve mentioned in No. 3, a planned vacation, something that you organize during the Christmas season for you to go somewhere for a few days or a weekend will be just the thing she thinks of and speaks of for the rest of the year. Much of the time, it’s more the idea of the planning and the commitment of giving her of your time will be more interesting to her than a physical gift. It’s a great way to reconnect and spend time with the person you care about.
It’s also a great way to get away from the stress of the Christmas season. Christmas is incredibly stressful, especially considering if this person, whether your mother, girlfriend or friend, is intimately involved in the planning activities, the cooking and the baking for the season. They may just want a few moments away just to catch themselves and they will really appreciate that.
Start keeping a list of things that the woman you ar shopping for has mentioned throughout the year that she is interested in, liked, but hasn’t purchased for herself. You’d be surprised as to how many times women drop hints about things that they are interested in. If you have a Keep file open on your phone or your computer, you can keep track of those things so you can have the most amazing present ever. After all, if you get her something on this list that she’s been mentioning the entire year that she wants, for example a new blender, then a blender may be the most awesome gift for this person.
Ignore what the Internet says, if the person you are trying to buy a gift for has indicated they want a particular gift, screw everybody else and GET THEM THAT GIFT!
You can think through something a little more romantic, a little sweeter, by having another kind of getaway. Not something you could take your mother or sister on but rather something that is specifically directed toward your significant romantic partner. This could be deciding to go out on a date, Palisadoes is nice for a date, at night with the benches and everything, you could go out for dinner, and you could have a sort of experience that’s planned out.
Don’t worry, it doesn’t have to be an expensive experience either, Tastee patties and a Bobby are as good as any other experience IF you think it through and the back story behind it. Is this where you two met? Does it remind you of something in your past? It can be super lovely but also touching and that will get her to consider that you’ve given thought to this gift as opposed to it being a last-minute gift.
Don’t worry though, it makes a great last-minute gift!
9) Handbags, Purses, or Wallets
Women like bags. I don’t say this to say EVERY woman likes bags but you may find that your significant other, friend, sister, mother, girl on the side, may enjoy a purse or a wallet. It seems to be one of those things that women never have quite enough of. I certainly am a great example of a woman who has many, many, many, handbags, all of which have a specific purpose in this life.
It’s going to be really important for you to consider the styles that she likes and the things that she enjoys receiving. But if you have a good sense of her style and the kinds of things she enjoys, then you may find that getting her a handbag, even if it’s something you have to ask her about, may be a really great gift.
I know you may be reticent to ask the person what it is they want for a Christmas present but you may just find that they do not know the answer to this unless you show them something and so, doing that may be useful to you.
Here are a few examples of great bags!
If you are struggling to figure out what someone wants for their Christmas present, what you can do is say to them that you already bought their Christmas present and that they are to guess what it is you bought. If they are guessing and give you two or three options, then you have two or three choices for things they would be very very happy to receive. And that may also inform your Christmas shopping list.
10) Bamboo Sheets or Household Supplies
I know, there is a whole thing about not buying women household supplies like a vacuum or a pressure cooker or a blender for Christmas or sheets. But you know what, if the person you are interested in purchasing for wants sheets, or household supplies and they’ve said that’s specifically what will make them happy, IGNORE THE INTERNET and buy the thing they said they want.
Bamboo sheets are incredible for the Caribbean in that they are lightweight, beautiful, and they feel incredible. If you think of Egyptian cotton as the top of the pyramid, bamboo sheets may just be on top of that. They aren’t an expensive gift but certainly a treat you’d get for someone that would make them not “regular old sheets” but “nice luxury sheets”. You can also think of a KitchenAid mixer, a NutriBullet or some other thing they want but may not want to splurge on for themselves but would hope for as a gift.
I’m not saying it needs to be expensive but, if that’s what the person says they want and you can afford it and are willing to purchase it, get that!
11) Books or a Kindle
My position on this is clear. Books are ALWAYS an amazing gift and a Kindle with an Amazon gift card is going to be a fantastic Christmas present for someone. What you need to think through is the books. If you know the kinds of books they like or they’ve mentioned specifically that they want a book, get them that. If you don’t, you can get them a gift card and a gift certificate to a bookstore locally or an Amazon gift card.
For me however, a Kindle is an amazing present for the book lover in your life, somebody who enjoys books and doesn’t yet have a Kindle OR is looking to upgrade their Kindle. Don’t get in the habit of buying a Kindle for someone who already owns one has no interest in getting a new one. But it’s a really an amazing way to gift someone who really enjoys books but wants a new opportunity to read them on a Kindle, this is a really great way. I suggest a Kindle Paperwhite, an Oasis or a Voyager because that backlight makes all the difference.
This is always going to be a great great investment for the women in your life. Fenty Beauty has come out with new makeup and Rihanna has inspired thousands of women to decide that, even if they don’t wear makeup right now, they’re willing to learn so they can glow like she does.
That means you have the ability to get makeup for your significant other, family member or friend. And that may mean buying colour products without them there at places like the MAC store in Sovereign or at Fontana Pharmacy. But you may also decide to give the person the gift of a tiny shopping spree. Perhaps not a massive shopping spree but buying a MAC lipstick for your significant other may just be the thing that allows you to feel that you’ve got them the gift that they’ve absolutely wanted and they’ll remember you by.
It doesn’t have to be super expensive but think of something a little more luxury than the Ja$100 (US$0.80) pharmacy lipstick. You want to think of something a little nicer than that as your gift. But, think of it this way, if the person you are getting this gift for actually enjoys makeup, they may already have many of these makeup products so, this is one of those things where you want to have a dialogue with that person and ask them what they would like, then you can get them the perfect gift.
So, perhaps you could get her makeup plus something romantic together so she has a memento of the experience but also has the trip to look forward to. So, make sure you think through all these things and buying for the women in your life isn’t super hard but I do hope that these tips help.
Remember always, be kind to yourself!