It just dawned on me that the week after next is my favorite holiday. That means I'll start making plans for going home to spend some time with my family and that I'll soon see some of my cousins that I miss so much throughout the rest of the year. I can't wait for Thanksgiving.
But, it's usually about this time of year when I try to start thinking about...(and I can't believe I'm writing a post about this because seeing the decorations in the stores so soon kind of bugs me)...purchasing on-line gifts so that I allow enough time for their delivery before the holidays.
I know many families who don't celebrate Christmas as my family does. At the same time, many do exchange small presents or stuff stockings near the end of the year. This is one of my favorite things to do: finding UNIQUE stocking stuffers. And, even though my budget is small, I also try to find small items I can give to my friends at work! And do you know one of my favorite places to find them? The Oriental Trading Company.
No matter how you celebrate, there are many great, INEXPENSIVE stocking-stuffer-type items or anytime-gifts that you may order from their web site. Just remember that most of these items are listed and sold in bulk (usually one dozen), so you may buy a large number of them for a low price and give them to several friends and family members. The following are just a FEW of the MANY that stood out to me as possibilities. (I tried to provide direct links to the items...but the links kept changing. So, please click on the Oriental Trading Company link, and type in the corresponding item number or item name for the item you'd like to view in the site search window.)
For Teens and Adults:
Snowflake Sticky Notes JK-4/3698 (maybe complete the set with Snowflake Pens With Bouncing Putty JK-4/3563)
Pop-Up 2007 Calendar Notepad JK-4/3774
Foam Antenna Balls Snowman JK-4/2729 or Reindeer JK-4/4038 (maybe you could place one on each of your friends' cars at work or school)
Cast-Iron Muffin Pans Gingerbread JK-95/96 or Snowman JK-95/1203
Snowman Shaped Playing Cards JK-4/3000
Old-Fashioned Candy Sticks JK-K79
Tricot Snowman Chair Covers JK-4/2687
Swirled Peppermint Tealight Candles JK-4/3727
For the Crafty:
Flowerpot Polar Bear Kit JK-48/4076 (maybe for a small gathering of women at the church)
Craft Glue Dots Mini JK-48/3312 or Regular JK-48/3313 (good for so many crafts)
Animal Paper Puppet Kits Regular JK-48/245 or Zoo JK-48/576 (great to keep & make throughout the year)
Ceramic "Paint Your Own" Ornaments JK-4/2379 (need a project for when the family is together?)
Fleece Tied Pillow Craft Kit JK-48/4054
For the Kids:
Foam Gliders JK-5/723 (all shapes, sizes, and patterns...and safe around the house)
Hand Puppets Plush Animals JK-6/537, Cloth Animals JK-6/1298, People Professions JK-6/1023 , Multicultural JK-6/1156, or Fairy Tales JK-6/858
Wooden Friendship Club Kids JK-27/229
Holiday Card Game Assortment JK-4/2036
Snowflake Kaleidoscopes JK-4/242
Sports Ball Fleece Throw JK-26/2040
Denim Pocket Tote Bags JK-14/146 or Bright Color Tote Bags JK-14/69
Wooden Peg Game Assortment JK-27/568
If you're a person who shops for wrapping paper & holiday bags, please consider the huge assortment that this company has to offer. They are so much cheaper than our local stores, and they are UNIQUE! Just remember - as with all of these items - to not wait too long to order!
Be sure to check back at the site as each season changes.