The Perfect Birthday Present for that Little Girl (No Batteries Required)

The Dilemma

As a mom of a five-year-old girl, I have attended countless birthday parties in the past few years. With each event, comes the inevitable trip to the toy store to find an appropriate gift for the child of honor. I began to dread the gift-buying process. Toys had either too many pieces, were too sophisticated, were too popular and bound to be duplicates, were too expensive, or just not cool enough (according to my resident expert). The toys my daughter received last year were played with once or twice and piled up in the closet along with the rest of the colorful plastic presents of the past.

The Answer: Dress-up Costumes!

With no small piece to be choking hazards, no instructions to read, no set up necessary, no batteries required and plenty of variety from which to choose, I had come up with a unique and perfect Birthday Present.

Every little girl dreams of being a princess and every little girl love to dress up in beautiful silky dresses, wear crowns, wave magic wands and dance around the house. But, dress-up costumes are not limited to princesses alone. With so many costumes to choose from, there is something special and unique for each child.

How To Pick The Right Costume

I have given many costumes as gifts and have found that you can’t go wrong giving a little girl a Barbie costume. However, here are some tips to make the perfect selection:

* Find out what TV shows the child likes to watch. Often, costumes of the main characters are available.

* Does the child have a favorite movie? There are numerous licensed movie costumes available.

* Be sure to buy an ‘Official Licensed Costume’ if available. This will help ensure that the child will be able to recognize the costume, as it will be made according to licensing specifications.

* Check the size and buy the right one. Nothing is more disappointing than receiving a costume and it not fitting. Make sure you buy the right size. If you are not sure, buy the larger size.

Grandfather Clocks – The Perfect Wedding Present

You are invited to your best friend’s wedding and you are wondering what to give the happy couple as a wedding present. In a few days, you’ll be dashing around store after store to look for the best gift money can buy.

But this is not just any ordinary gift! You are giving it to your best friends. You want it to be special. You want it to be unique. How do you manage to get the perfect, unduplicated gift possible? Well, you can opt to be creative and personalize it and make it yourself, or you can buy it. There are three ways that can guarantee you to the perfect wedding present.

Use Your Imagination

Some people are blessed with a special innate creative talent for creating things out of nothing and making them special. Some people can make soap or scented candles, or make knitted things. But these are too common. You might end up having your gift returned.

However, some people also have the uncanny ability of things that are technical in nature. If you have this, then you’re in luck. You can most probably make something that they will most probably use at their new home, that no one else has ever thought about. Try a grandfather clock as an example. Maybe if you have a knack for woodwork, you can make this magnificent piece of art by itself just from a few how-to’s on the Internet. However, only a small percentage of people actually have this ability and has the time to do it. If you really insist, you might actually end up giving the grandfather clock on their silver wedding anniversary.

Alternatively, you can also opt to buy them a grandfather clock and you will surely know that you will be able to give it to them on time and know that it will be always used for many years to come.

Personalize Your Gift

Although it would be just fine to wrap your present and send it on its merry way to the couple, it would be extra special if you could personalize it. If you know the couple well, you should be able to find something uniquely special for them. You can have a personal message added to any gift, like a grandfather clock with their last names etched on it and or the date of their wedding. Make the gifts unique to them and they will appreciate the thought and effort you put into it.

Still Clueless? Get Creative!

Choosing a wedding present has become quite difficult in the past couple of years, making it difficult for avoiding giving duplicate gifts. However, that is the common case because if you have no talent at all for handmade gifts, let alone have the words to have it personalized, you are in big trouble. You are thinking way too mainstream.

However, you can make sure that your gift won’t be returned if you decide to turn it into a worthwhile project that you put some effort into. A grandfather clock, for example, is not your run-in-the-mill kind of wedding offering. You end up having an inimitable wedding gift for the deserving couple. They will truly take pleasure in it and benefit from it for many years to come.

Do They Know It’s Christmas? – Christmas Present Tips For the Last-Minute Guys

When was the last time you sat next to someone who gloated that they had bought and wrapped their Christmas presents by the end of the summer sales? Trust us, these people either have no life, are cheapskates because they have paid less than half price for last year’s stock, or they are just plain cunning and are not to be messed with. How on earth did they know what Christmas presents to purchase that early on and where on earth have they put them? Storing Christmas presents is an annual challenge for most of us. There’s a fine line between getting them out of sight from prying eyes and remembering their clever hiding places again on Christmas Eve.

Those of you who have children will know it’s impossible to plan and buy their Christmas presents in advance. Oh yes, in September your five year old son will be banging on about a Dino Dig kit and you get it delivered straight away knowing that you’ve made a dream come true – until they come back from their best pal’s house in late November announcing they want a PicoZ Red Helicopter just like so-and-so’s. Now you’re in trouble. There will either be tears at Christmas time or your Christmas present budget just grew a little.

As soon as we get to November 1st, you can guarantee the huge pumpkin lanterns and witch hats will be sent back to the store room to make way for the life-sized reindeer and over-loaded Christmas trees in shops across the land. Anyone with an ounce of sense will mark this black day in the calendar and avoid the centre of town for the next seven and a half weeks. It’s not going to be pleasant so don’t bother. Some people make this choice simply to retain their sanity and good humour. Others avoid Christmas present shopping in the stores in the run-up to Christmas because if they don’t they will come out in a nervous rash. Shoppers can be ugly and vicious as they jostle for the last Grow Your Own Arsenal Pitch (did you see the stampede at Highbury in May 2006 for a slice of the real thing?) If you don’t believe us, rent the Arnie film “Jingle All the Way” and see just how bad it can be. (OK, it’s just a movie, but we have to make the point!)

So what’s the choice? If you can’t beat them, join them? Not quite. Buying your Christmas presents over the internet is the easiest solution. Making your selections at home before lunchtime and then putting your feet up in front of the match at 2.45 sounds like a morning well-spent. For the last-minute Christmas present shoppers, there are two options. One, you head down to town in the downpour while your mates are enjoying a few rounds in the pub, and spend hours hunting around stores that are already preparing for the post-Christmas sales. There’ll be no colours or sizes that anyone in their right minds would choose, nor will anything that meets your budget be available anymore. Or two, you jump online and choose the exact Christmas presents you had in mind, and wait for them to arrive. Who says you have no Christmas spirit? You just have better things to do with your time. You have still thought about what you are buying. And let’s face it, the number of times shoppers deliberate for ages over a Christmas present like an Iconic Telephone for their parents should I? Shan’t I? It’s not a problem you are likely to encounter. You make a decision on the spot and stick to it. In fact, once the item’s paid for the thought has flown. There are more people than care to admit that there have been a number of Christmas presents brought home and then the guilt pangs set in. What if they don’t like it? Is the colour right? Will they be offended by my humour? None of these questions are likely to bother you.

So you have sat yourself down at the PC and you are still wondering if there’s enough time to put it off till tomorrow because you hoped to squeeze in a round of golf today. Check the delivery times and then y ou’ll be able to make your decision. You don’t want to go to all this trouble and then discover that your Christmas presents won’t arrive till January 3rd. Your street cred would really take a nosedive if that were to happen, and you might just wish you’d been a little bit more ahead of the game.