As the holidays approach, I’m all for gifts that fall into one of two camps: experiences or practical gifts. Below, I’m sharing things I’ve either loved and used for years or have recently started enjoying in 2018. If you’re looking for the perfect gift for a special New Yorker in your life, read on for inspiration!
Bonus points: These can all be given in basically the knick of time…not a ton of time for shipping/shopping/processing required at all!
The Gift of Inspiration
As a yoga teacher, I open and close each class with an inspirational quote or story. One of the best books I’ve come across (and use snippets of constantly in my classes) is Cleo Wade’s Heart Talk. It’s one of those books you can read cover to cover, or just open it up and pick a page for your daily inspo to get through the day. And real talk: what New Yorker doesn’t need a little inspiration?
The Gift of Meditation
Meditation can feel a little overwhelming when you’re first coming into it. I mean, what New Yorker can sit still and clear their head for an hour with no guidance?! This year, I wanted to up my meditation game so I invested in the app Headspace. Their guided meditations lead you through various topics, such as relationships, handling anxiety, grief, and they even have walking meditations and meditations for kids. SO GOOD. You can try the free version of the app before taking the plunge too, but I promise it really does help every other moment of your NYC day go just a little smoother. And if you purchase through their website, they’re currently doing a 40% off promo for the entire year of 2019.
The Gift of Membership
There’s countless places to become a member in NYC, so think about what will most benefit and interest your gift recipient. Do they have kids? A family membership to the Children’s Museum would be so appreciated! Love art? The MOMA or MET are perfect. All things literary? A membership to the New York Society Library! (I gifted this to myself this year and have been SO pleased with it!) The great thing about memberships is that in addition to getting in to places for free for a year, all of these spots have members-only events and perks.
The Gift of Time
Since becoming a mom, I’ve really honed in on how precious time is (but seriously, this applies to all New Yorkers, parenthood not required.) If you could give someone time back in their day from doing tasks they typically dread doing, how amazing would that be? Examples are:
–A yearly membership to FreshDirect which will get them free delivery on groceries, all year long (hence saving the time every week to trek to and from the grocery store with heavy packages).
–A deep clean of their apartment (either by hiring someone out or even volunteering to do it yourself!)
–A gift certificate for send-out laundry service, with a site like Cleanly.
–A gift certificate to TaskRabbit, which will cover just about any annoying task they may have…such as assembling tricky Christmas gifts for the kids, installing the TV on the wall, doing a deep organization of their closets, etc.
–If they have children, a gift certificate to SitterCity for babysitting.
The Gift of Food
This can be as easy or complex as you choose, but I’ve never met a New Yorker who doesn’t love a good meal. Whether it’s a gift certificate to Seamless so they can order food in on cold winter nights, a gift certificate to a restaurant, a coffee card to a cafe by their house, or Christmas goodies you prepare and deliver yourself, this gift will certainly be a cherished (and consumed!) one!
The Gift of Something Beautiful and Useable
Things that can elevate and enhance our lives (while not necessarily staying around for the long haul) are very much appreciated by New Yorkers short on space. Think of things that people may not splurge on for themselves, but would very much appreciate if they were gifted. A few of my favorites in this category are: a delightful scented candle (this grapefruit one by NEST is one of my faves for every single season), fancy hand soap for the bathroom, a really high quality olive oil, a bag of coffee grounds from a local roaster, or a set of really pretty notecards. All of these things will be able to be used up relatively quickly, so they won’t add unneeded clutter to the recipient’s apartment.
The Gift of a Memory
I’m a sucker for a good memory. If you’re able to gift your own time and an experience to your recipient, this is a great route to go. Depending on what they’re into, ideas can be:
–Tickets to a Broadway show.
–A cupcake/sushi/pizza making class (CourseHorse has some great options).
–An afternoon at a local day spa, complete with massages and plenty of time for chit chat.
–A full Saturday committed to doing all their favorite things (i.e. brunch at their favorite brunch spot, a relaxing yoga class, a walk through Central Park, and cocktails at their favorite rooftop to cap off the day.)
All the gift talk aside, I’ll slide in a simple reminder that presence is the best present you can give anyone close to you. Honestly, a coffee date or a catch up phone call will mean more to most than any of the above ideas. Here’s wishing you and yours the very merriest holiday season yet!