Holiday in a Box and Other Suggestions

Do you know someone who is experiencing a tough time this year?  Maybe they could use a bit of a respite from caregiving or from some other life challenge. If so, here are a few suggestions to help them out.

Prepare a holiday in a box. Get a cardboard box and fill it with holiday decorations and go over to your recipient’s home and help them decorate. Spend time with them in a meaningful way. Put some gingersnaps or other cookies and treats in the box to make the occasion fun and even reminiscent of good times. Throw in a CD of holiday music too.

Give them a gift card. All of the major credit card companies sell loadable gift cards at drugstores and retail stores like Target. Buy one and load it up so that the recipient has a choice as to where to spend the gift and on how to spend the gift as in buying groceries, medicine, or for paying bills.

Send them secret Santa gifts. If you shop online, this is really easy to do. Purchase something your recipient needs and have it sent to them without letting them know it was from you. Surprises can brighten a day.

Pay for a service. If your recipient lives in a snowy area, then pay for snow plow service. Maybe they need help cleaning; pay for a housekeeping service. You can pay for them to have their hair done and a mani-pedi. How about sending over their favorite take-out via a delivery service? A subscription to a food co-op for fresh, seasonal produce is a great gift for a person on a tight and taxed budget.

Serve them. If the situation allows, then pay an extended visit with your friend or family member that enables you to be a sounding board or fun buddy while assisting them with a few day-to-day chores. Wash their dishes, do the laundry, mop and dust…just help out so that they have a little breathing room.

There’s little point in discussing how commercialized the holiday season has become. We will buy gifts and spend the money, but the hope is that in doing so, we don’t forget that the little things to a caregiver or stressed person really mean a lot. Do you have any extra suggestions? If so, please share in the comments.

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