Like its Jewish holiday counterpart, Christmas is a celebration
that lasts beyond the one eve and day we have come to
acknowledge. The 12 days of Christmas is actually more than a song, it's a time when some Christians need 12 days of Christmas gift ideas because they exchange presents from December 25th through the Epiphany, on January 6th.
Yes, the 12 days of Christmas are more than just a song, but it would be less than practical to use the lyrics as inspiration for 12 days of Christmas gift ideas; turtle doves being a hard commodity to ship through Amazon.
Although it's probably possible, we thought it would be better to keep it simpler than sending you out to gather geese, by sharing 13 days of Christmas gift ideas that will give your friends and family as much joy as a golden ring, or 5, as the case may be.
If the Magi had access to the Internet, we believe these would be some of the presents they would consider. However, Christmas might have been only 2 days long if they used expedited shipping to get the gifts to Bethlehem. Fortunately, you can. And, with our 12 days of Christmas gift ideas, you can prepare yourself for the gift-giving ahead of time, and enjoy a stress-free holiday season.
Why Are There 12 Days of Christmas?
Most of us don't exchange gifts all 12 days. It's so much more exciting to wake up to all Santa's gifts in one pile, but before there were elves hammering out the presents at the North Pole, there were 3 wise men making their way to see the baby Jesus.
Christmas Day is the first of the 12 days, with the last day being the day of the Epiphany, or the day the Magi reached Jesus's birthplace for the Revelation of Jesus Christ as the savior and son of God. While some Christians believe the 12th day is the day the Magi's presented their gifts to Jesus, others declare the 12th day as the day of Christ's baptism.
A Different Tune
The 12 days of Christmas is also a song believed to have been sung by little children in eighteenth-century England. The song began as a memory game, with each child challenged to remember the gifts of the previous singers and then add their own or face elimination,
It's still a challenge today to remember the order of the gifts when we sing the song. It can be an even greater challenge to think of the perfect Christmas gift, so we did some of the homework to come up with 12 days of Christmas gift ideas you can use to give your 12 favorite people on that one special day, or your one special person over the 12, like in olden days. However you celebrate, we're leaping to assist you with 12 days of Christmas gift ideas we found that will lift anyone's spirits.
Do You Have to Spend a Lot of Money on These Gifts?
Your Christmas gift budget might be smaller than previous years, or maybe you plan to splurge a little more than you have in past seasons. Our 12 days of Christmas gift ideas span a range of prices, all packed with the power to put a smile on your recipient's face.
12 Days of Christmas Gift Ideas
Here are 12 thoughtful gifts from an assortment of categories and some direct links to the North Pole (Internet) where you can order them to be delivered to the chimney of your choice.
Theater or Movie Tickets
A night of entertainment can be quite pricy and a real treat for those who are watching their budget. Whether you give theatre tickets to a play or a musical touring through town, it's a treat everyone looks forward to. You can buy a pair to give, or attach yourself to the tickets and go along.
There's Always a Movie to See
Sending a favorite family to the movies is always appreciated. With the price of tickets plus popcorn or a box of licorice and a soda, going to see a movie in the theater has become prohibitive for many people who need to use their money for basic living expenses. Just buying the tickets takes a great weight off the cost. Let's face it, everyone likes the opportunity to enjoy movie popcorn.
One of our favorite 12 days of Christmas gift ideas is actually 12 months of gifts. There are services that send everything from flowers to fruit every month. Everyone likes to recieve gifts, and many people only get them during the holidays. A HoneyBaked ham is fabulous for those families feasting together on Christmas, but for the person who might not have so many others in their life, a monthly delivery can mean a lot.
What to Choose
Consider their interests and the things the person loves. If your mom is learning about wine, she will enjoy a wine-of-the-month delivery. There's also a monthly beer subscription for those into the ales. You can't go wrong having a dessert delivered each month to almost anyone.
Some services even deliver meats and full meals. Today, there are companies, like Ipsy and Birchbox, that specialize in sending cosmetic gift surprises throughout the year. If you like this nutty idea, try a Harry and David 12 month snack delivery.
New Monthly Delivery Services
Every day there are new "month club" companies popping up online. Some even take a survey of hobbies and interests, then create special boxes filled with samples of favorite things at affordable prices.
Do a little browsing, and you're sure to find just the right service that will deliver the best gift to anyone every month. There's even a monthly box of toys and chews you can send to Fido, who will be wagging his tail at the door on the thirtieth, waiting for the delivery truck to arrive.
It's more than a trend, it's a great gift to give anything personalized as a gift. It shows a lot of thought went into your gift. Pick a photo of a memory shared, and you can have it put on a mug—so your person can see your mug first thing every morning, or make a calendar with several memories that match each month from years past.
One of the most beautiful photo gifts we've seen are images produced on glass or metal. You can order them with a built-in easel, on a magnet, or to hang on the wall in any size. There are canvas versions as well. Blankets and thermal cups with a photo are warm reminders of a good time.
Remember the Engraving
When you purchase a present like a watch or other piece of jewelry, consider having it engraved. If you have a special quote or saying you share, that makes a perfect inscription. On Christmas, it's lovely to have the date inscribed to commemorate the occasion. Have a set of champagne glasses etched with a monogram as a way to wish someone a happy upcoming new year ahead.
This is a gift for almost anyone of any age, You can find a good set of earbuds at every price point. Add a music subscription, and any teen will be asking for you to be invited to next year's Christmas party.
These also make a great gift for those who work out, jog, or walk outside, or work in a noisy place. Anything that has to do with music always makes an excellent gift. This would be unless you give the soundtrack of Cats to a dog. To be safe, stick to the earbuds!
Home Made Goodies
It's not just that it's inexpensive and you can cover a lot of presents with a few batches, but making something yourself is the epitome of the thoughtful gift. Everyone loves to eat, especially something sweet. Reindeer Munch is easy to make: cereal, pretzels, peanuts, and chocolate. is This is also true of fudge, really, especially in the microwave.
A Holiday Activity
Like holiday cookies, making a homemade candy or other snack is not only a nice gift idea but something you can make with kids or friends. Start a tradition that can turn into a yearly holiday activity as well as a special treat people can look forward to receiving.
A Christmas Lesson
This is another opportunity to give a gift that lets someone know you are tuned into their personality. There are lessons you can find in almost anything. Cooking classes at the local mall store or a favorite restaurant that gives cooking clinics is an excellent choice for your foodie who loves to cook.
Give them a yoga class to relax or an excursion where they will be taught how to fish or ride a Segway through town. Remember that wine-of-the-month we recommended for mom? How about a class in wine tasting? A learning experience is a gift many won't buy for themselves but will love to receive.
Check out your local Groupon where deals are always offered for classes of all kinds.
The Spa Day
While we are on the subject of experiences, there is probably no better way to help someone relax than to present them with a present of self-care. Facials, mani-pedis, and a make-up makeover are all thoughtful gifts for anyone who could use a little time out and a dose of pampering. This isn't a gift idea only for the women in your life. A pedicure or a deep tissue massage is a gift most men will enjoy or force themselves to try—and then want to get more often!
Maybe you know your audience or maybe you don't. Perhaps you know what someone would like but can't afford to give an entire gift to them this year. We aren't big supporters of just pulling any random gift card off the rack.
A gift card to a steakhouse isn't going to light up a vegan's face, but a gift card given with intent can represent more than a piece of plastic. "Please use this to help purchase that designer bag you've had your eye on", will be a welcome message no matter how you wrap it.
A Meaningful Donation
Sometimes, there are occasions when it doesn't feel right to give an actual present like when something representational of a person's circumstance or interest is a more appropriate choice than a cashmere sweater.
If someone has lost a loved one or they are in the midst of a health struggle, then a donation may have more meaning for them this year. Almost everyone has a cause near and dear to their heart; a gift of a donation shows that, to you, they are dear to yours.
What's a better gift, besides a genie in a bottle, than a gift with the potential for more gifts! Lottery tickets are a fun present, especially good for Christmas games.
Your local convenience store has an assortment of brightly decorated, holiday-themed scratchers, and, if the weekly games are running up in the millions and billions, anyone will appreciate a chance—or ten or twenty—at winning. Who knows, if they win, maybe they will feel appreciative and share some green holiday spirit!
Ornaments are Forever
Christmas is a time to mark the special moments, and the Christmas tree is the symbol of the season that lights up the home and hearts of those who live there. Is it your friend or a family member's first holiday in a new home? Maybe they bought themselves a cool vintage chevy or just brought home a new baby.
Whatever the event, there's an ornament for it, and it makes a gift that will be enjoyed for years. Personalize it with the year and your name to be a part of their memory for future Christmases. Instead of showing up with a plate of cookies that will be delicious but gone tomorrow, consider a holiday ornament for your next holiday host or hostess.
Giving Something Special for Yourself
Of all our 12 days of christmas gift ideas, the gift of giving to a stranger is perhaps our favorite. It is a present to yourself to know you are helping to make someone else's Christmas a little more special and a good teaching moment for children to learn the joy of giving.
The local children's hospital or shelter always welcomes presents to distribute to those who are suffering from health, family, or money issues. A basket of packaged food to a local food bank is a reminder of our good fortune and best wishes for others. Some churches and community centers feature trees that hang with ornaments stating what individual families' want or need for the holidays.
If you can't afford much, think about serving a holiday meal to the homeless. Your time is the most precious present you can give.
Christmas season means different things to different people. For many, it is a special opportunity to show love and appreciation for those in our lives and in the world. This list of gifts is our gift to you to help make your gift giving a little easier and perhaps a little more fun. Happy holidays!