My 2019 Holiday Gift Guide

As Christmas quickly approaches, I've been working on my list of gifts to get for our family members and friends.

In that process, I thought about putting together a gift guide similar to ones I've done in previous years, highlighting eco-friendly and sustainable gifts. But I figured that since there are so many other gift guides being put out by talented bloggers, I might focus on a different kind of guide.

I love this guide from Natalie over at Sustainably Chic - she compiled 50 sustainable and ethical gifts that are less than $50. Right up my alley!

As Ariana gets bigger and more into her toddler phase, I've found myself thinking more about my desire to create fun family memories. We're past the newborn survival mode and she's able to do more things. It inspired me to create a gift guide focused on the intangible - things that help you create fun family memories. It's eco-friendly in a way that it doesn't focus on material goods!

So this year, consider gifting your family and friends with experience gifts. To quote Cousin Eddie, it's the gift that keeps on giving the whole year!

If you desire to wrap more than just a card or slip of paper, I'm suggesting a small tangible gift to go along with each experience.


Passes or memberships to the zoo/botanical gardens/local attraction tour

Visiting the zoo has been on our weekend activity bucket list for a few months now, but we still haven't made it out. With as much as my daughter loves seeing animals, I know she will have a great time at the zoo. One of our other items is a tour of Avery Island, where Tabasco is manufactured.

Annual memberships allow families with young children to make fun memories all year long.

Pair with: A small stuffed animal or toy related to the attraction

Passes or memberships to local entertainment venues

Our town has had a few new entertainment spots open recently that provide fun for the family. From an indoor virtual reality park (Planet VR) to the all-in-one entertainment spot (Surge Entertainment), there are more options than ever for fun things to do, especially if you have children. Gifting passes or memberships allows parents to make easy plans on a weekend or day off from school.

Pair with: A reusable water bottle for staying hydrated while playing

Camping/paddling plans

Getting outdoors and enjoying nature is sure to make fun family memories. Make plans to camp at a state park or paddle on a nearby lake, and gift some of the gear that might be needed, from a sleeping back to a camping stove. Camping has been on my husband's and my adventure list for a couple years now - one day I swear we will do it!

Pair with: Gear to use for the adventure you choose

Streaming subscription

For the less outdoorsy or adventurous, give the gift of a streaming subscription! With all of the services available now, the subscription prices can quickly add up every month.

Pair with: Cozy socks for lounging to watch said streaming service!

Gift card for a photo service

Whether it's with a cell phone or a DSLR, people love to capture photos of special memories and trips. And most of the time, we keep all of our pictures stored on our phones or computers or in the cloud. A gift card to a photo service can allow a family or friend to print photos to add to a physical album, create books or other mementos, or simply create online albums to share with family and friends. It's an elevated step from the Facebook photo album.

Pair with: A blank physical photo album

What is your favorite experience that would make a great gift for others?

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