Tag Archive for: gifts

Thoughtful Presents for Those with Spring Birthdays

Spring birthdays are a breath of fresh air, marking the beginning of warmer days and a sense of renewal. Finding the perfect gift for someone born during this vibrant season can be an opportunity to embrace the spirit of spring and delight your loved one with something thoughtful and meaningful. Whether they’re a nature enthusiast, a budding gardener, or simply someone who enjoys the beauty of the season, here are some gift ideas sure to bring joy to their special day.

The List

  1. Blooming Beauties

    Spring is synonymous with flowers, making floral-themed gifts a natural choice. Consider gifting a flower subscription from a local flower farm. Late Harvest Farms near Palo, IA has a lovely subscription for summer and/or Fall. For a personal touch, choose varieties known for their symbolism, such as daffodils for new beginnings or cherry blossoms for beauty and renewal.

  2. Gardening Essentials

    For green-thumbed individuals, gardening tools, seed kits, or a subscription to a gardening magazine can make for practical and enjoyable gifts. Help them nurture their love for plants and cultivate their own little piece of paradise with tools like quality scissors, gardening gloves, or a watering can.

  3. Outdoor Adventures

    Spring is the perfect time to embrace the great outdoors, making gifts that encourage exploration and adventure a wonderful choice. Consider a day pass to a national park, a membership to a hiking or biking club, or an awesome water bottle where they can keep track of the national parks they’ve visited.

  4. Seasonal Indulgences

    Treat your loved one to a taste of spring with indulgent gifts like artisanal chocolates infused with floral flavors, gourmet teas featuring fragrant herbs and botanicals, or a selection of seasonal fruits and cheeses for a decadent picnic spread. For a unique twist, consider booking a culinary class where they can learn to prepare spring-inspired dishes themselves.

  5. Personalized Keepsakes

    Commemorate their special day with a personalized gift that they’ll just love. Whether it’s a custom piece of jewelry engraved with their monogram, a photo album filled with memories shared together, or a handcrafted journal for jotting down thoughts and dreams, personalized gifts show you’ve put extra care into selecting something meaningful. I’ve found that Personalization Mall has MANY gifts that can quickly be customized. And if you want something super special, check out Mark & Graham for unique and gorgeous gifts for everyone.

  6. Creative Expression

    Encourage their creativity with gifts that inspire artistic expression. Whether it’s a set of watercolor paints and brushes, a beginner’s calligraphy kit, or a journal for sketching and doodling, fostering their creative pursuits can bring joy and fulfillment.

  7. Bird Houses

    Bring the beauty of nature right to their doorstep with a charming birdhouse with camera. Choose a design that complements their home’s aesthetic and consider placing it in a prominent spot where they can enjoy watching the birds come and go.

Remember, the best gifts are those chosen with the recipient in mind. Reflect on the unique interests and personality of your friend, family member, or co-worker and choose accordingly. Whether you opt for a bouquet of fresh flowers, a gardening kit, or a personalized keepsake, the thought and effort you put into selecting the perfect gift will undoubtedly make their spring birthday even more memorable and meaningful.

Until we chat again,

SH Signature

How Thanking Boosts Business Success

In the business world, success isn’t solely measured by transactions; it thrives on relationships and the emotional connections created. One powerful tool in nurturing these connections is the act of gift-giving. Specifically, thanking clients through thoughtful gestures holds the potential to significantly impact business success, transcending the boundaries of mere transactions. I learned a lot about this while working at the YMCA. There were so many places members could go, and thanking them was especially important. Recently, I worked with a local candle maker to help a client create custom, local gifts for their clients. See the image associated with this blog!

Strengthening Relationships

Expressing gratitude through gifts creates a link between the business and clients, establishing an emotional connection beyond the transactional aspect. Whether it’s a personalized token of appreciation or a gesture that commemorates a milestone, such acts convey a message beyond words. They communicate an understanding of the client’s value and a genuine commitment to nurturing the relationship.

Building Trust and Loyalty

Trust is the cornerstone of any enduring business relationship. When a client receives a thoughtful gift, it solidifies the trust they have in the business. It reinforces the idea that the business isn’t solely interested in profit but genuinely values the client’s contribution to their success. This strengthened trust, in turn, breeds loyalty, encouraging clients to remain committed to the business amidst competitive market landscapes.

Enhancing Brand Image and Reputation

The act of thanking clients with gifts doesn’t go unnoticed. It reflects positively on the brand’s image, portraying it as considerate, attentive, and invested in client satisfaction. This not only influences the perception of existing clients but also attracts potential clients. A strong reputation for appreciation and gratitude becomes a distinguishing factor, setting the business apart from competitors.

Measurable Impact on Business Success

The impact of thanking clients through gifts isn’t merely anecdotal; it’s quantifiable. Businesses that prioritize client appreciation witness tangible benefits. Increased client retention rates, higher engagement levels, a rise in referrals, and improved feedback are among the measurable outcomes that demonstrate the effectiveness of this strategy.

The act of thanking clients through thoughtful gifts isn’t merely a formality; it’s a strategic investment in fostering meaningful relationships. It’s an acknowledgment of the pivotal role clients play in the success story of a business. By tapping into the psychological aspects of reciprocity, trust-building, and emotional connections, businesses can elevate their standing, secure long-term partnerships, and ultimately thrive in today’s competitive landscape. I’d LOVE to help you make a lasting impact on your clients, customers, or employees. Simply use this link to get on my calendar for a chat.

As businesses navigate the complexities of modern markets, incorporating gratitude and appreciation through strategic gift-giving could be the differentiating factor that propels them toward sustained success. After all, in the realm of business, the impact of a simple ‘thank you’ can reverberate far beyond its spoken words.

Until we chat again,

SH Signature

As you know, my background is in nonprofit marketing. And end-of-year giving was always something I touted and marketed. So, as the year draws to a close, it’s time to reflect on the impact we’ve made and opportunities to continue to give back. Whether time, talent, or treasure, there are numerous creative and impactful ways individuals and businesses can contribute before the calendar turns. Here’s a list of avenues to make a difference:

  1. Volunteer Your Time: Local shelters, food banks, and community centers often need extra hands during the holiday season. Dedicate a few hours of your time to volunteer, whether it’s serving meals, organizing donation drives, or simply spending time with those in need. A great place to find volunteer opportunities is at United Way of East Central Iowa’s Volunteer Now page. Not sure what makes sense for you? This website helps you find the right volunteer outlet for what YOU like/want to do.
  2. Donate Goods or Services: Clean out your closets and gather items that could benefit others. Clothes, blankets, non-perishable food items, and toys can be donated to shelters or organizations supporting families in need. Additionally, consider offering your professional services pro bono to nonprofits or individuals who could benefit from your expertise. Goodwill Industries and Salvation Army are great places to give in most communities.
  3. Participate in Fundraising Events: Join charity runs, auctions, or other fundraising events organized by local nonprofits. These events not only raise funds but also create a sense of community involvement and support.
  4. Start a Personal Fundraising Campaign: Use online platforms to start your own fundraising campaign for a cause you’re passionate about. Whether it’s for medical expenses, education, or supporting a local project, your initiative can make a significant impact.
  5. Corporate Giving Programs: Businesses can get involved by setting up matching donation programs for their employees’ contributions to charitable organizations. Encourage your workplace to support and match employee donations to amplify the impact.
  6. Random Acts of Kindness: Small gestures can have a big impact. Pay for someone’s meal, leave encouraging notes in public spaces, or simply offer a helping hand to those you encounter during your day. Pay for the car behind you when you are making your Starbucks run!
  7. Educate and Advocate: Spread awareness about important causes by educating others. Share information on social media, host information sessions, or engage in conversations that raise awareness about pressing issues.
  8. Support Local Businesses with Social Impact: Choose to shop at local businesses that support social causes or have initiatives to give back to the community. By supporting them, you indirectly contribute to their philanthropic efforts.
  9. Mentorship and Skill Sharing: Offer mentorship or share your skills with individuals looking to learn. This could include tutoring, mentoring youth, teaching a class, or sharing professional expertise with aspiring individuals.

By engaging in these diverse and meaningful ways of giving back, you not only contribute to the betterment of our communities but also foster a culture of compassion, empathy, and collective support. As we approach year-end, let’s seize these opportunities to make a positive difference in the lives of those around us. Together, our efforts can create a ripple effect that extends far beyond the holiday season, leaving a lasting impact for a brighter future. Connect with me. I’d love to help you find places to give whatever you want to give.

Until Next Time,

SH Signature

Recently I posted options for creating more eco-friendly gift wrap options. So, I thought I’d expand on it by talking about gifts for employees, customers, and clients that are more eco-friendly.

In a world increasingly aware of its ecological footprint, the way we show gratitude is evolving. Businesses, keen on fostering a culture of appreciation, are turning to eco-friendly gifts as a meaningful way to acknowledge their employees.

The traditional approach of gifting may have leaned heavily on material goods, but the shift toward sustainable and eco-friendly options shows a better understanding of employee goals outside the office.

Reducing Environmental Impact

Choosing eco-friendly gifts minimizes the environmental impact typically associated with production, packaging, and disposal. From recycled materials to items made from sustainable resources like bamboo, organic cotton, or biodegradable materials, these gifts actively contribute to reducing waste and conserving natural resources.

Empowering Employee Connection with Nature

Eco-friendly gifts often connect recipients with nature, whether through plants, organic skincare products, reusable items, or experiences like outdoor adventures.

Examples of Sustainable Gifts

  1. Reusable Items: Stainless steel water bottles, bamboo utensil sets, or cloth tote bags serve as practical and eco-conscious gifts, reducing single-use plastic waste.
  2. Greenery: Indoor plants or herb gardens not only enhance office aesthetics but also purify the air, promoting a healthier workspace and instilling a sense of responsibility towards nature.
  3. Fair Trade Products: Opting for fair trade, ethically sourced items like organic chocolates, coffee, or handmade crafts supports sustainable practices and fair wages for artisans.
  4. Experiences: Offering experiences such as nature retreats, tree-planting initiatives, or outdoor team-building activities promotes appreciation for the environment while fostering team bonding.

Beyond Material Gifts

Sometimes, the most meaningful gestures of appreciation don’t come in a physical form. Offering opportunities for remote work, flexible hours, or additional paid time off empowers employees to make sustainable lifestyle choices, reducing commute-related emissions.

The Lasting Impact

Employees feel valued, inspired, and motivated by the acknowledgment of their efforts while knowing that the appreciation comes with a conscientious approach toward preserving the planet. By embracing this shift to eco-consciousness, businesses can foster a culture of appreciation while being kinder to our planet.

Until Next Time,

SH Signature

Celebs are People, too.

When it comes to gifts, celebrities are known for their extravagant tastes and grand gestures. (To go along with the title, you (likely) ain’t never gonna get it, never gonna get it.) As trendsetters in various aspects of life, their gifting choices often influence us all. Whether it’s a birthday, wedding, or a holiday season, celebrities have a knack for turning simple acts of generosity into headline-worthy events. Let’s delve into the intriguing world of celebrity gifting trends to see what’s currently in vogue.

Personalized and Customized Gifts

It’s no secret that personalization is the key to making a gift feel special. Celebrities are increasingly leaning towards customized presents that carry sentimental value. From monogrammed jewelry to custom artwork, these gifts show thought and effort. For example, a beautifully embroidered baby blanket for a new parent or a piece of jewelry with a meaningful date or name engraved on it. I love Mark & Graham for affordable, custom gifts.

Sustainability and Philanthropy

In recent years, many celebrities have been using their influence to promote sustainability and social causes. As a result, eco-friendly and philanthropic gifts are becoming more popular. Gift choices that support a charitable cause or reduce environmental impact, such as reusable water bottles, sustainable fashion, or donations to charity in the recipient’s name, are gaining momentum. Oprah always has a great list for this purpose that have reasonable options included.

Luxury Experiences

Celebrities often have access to everything money can buy, which makes experiential gifts more appealing. Gifting luxury experiences like spa retreats, exotic vacations, or exclusive concert tickets is a growing trend. These gifts provide unforgettable memories that can’t be wrapped in a box. Since we may not be able to afford a truly luxury experience, I love to give cozymeal gifts for those I know love to cook or maybe want to learn how to cook better.

Subscription Boxes

Subscription boxes have become a hot trend in celebrity gifting. These curated packages deliver surprises to the recipient’s doorstep regularly. From gourmet food to beauty products, subscription boxes cater to a variety of interests, ensuring that the recipient gets a gift that keeps on giving long after the initial unwrapping. I hate to admit it but Amazon has an incredible number of options for this at all price points.

Art and Collectibles

Celebrities often have a keen interest in art and collectibles. Unique and rare items, from vintage vinyl records to one-of-a-kind paintings, are increasingly popular gifts. These gifts not only hold monetary value but also serve as conversation pieces in the recipient’s home. Etsy will always be where I go to find gorgeous art online. However, in the ICR Iowa area, we have so many great places that support local artists and their wares, I typically scour those stores to get just the right things for my arty friends..

Tech Gadgets

The world of technology is ever-evolving, and many celebrities stay at the forefront of the latest gadgets. Gifts like the latest smartphones, smart home devices, or personalized tech accessories are trendy choices. Technology gifts not only show that you’re keeping up with the times but also provide practical utility. I love the gorgeous techy gadgets from Courant. I’ve had clients and friends who’ve LOVED the products I’ve given.

Personal Wellness

In an era where self-care is paramount, personal wellness gifts are all the rage. This includes items like high-end skincare products, meditation and relaxation accessories, or even fitness and health gadgets. Celebrity-endorsed wellness products can make for thoughtful and health-conscious presents. There are so many great classes and personal trainers in the area. Google away and find the exact right one for your purposes.

Jewelry

Classic and timeless, jewelry has always been a popular choice for gifting, especially among celebrities. From diamond necklaces to heirloom-quality watches, jewelry is the perfect way to convey love, appreciation, and luxury. Or another idea is to check out swap meets, pawn shops, or antique stores. You can likely find a good deal on something magnificent.

Fashion and Accessories

Celebrities often set trends in fashion, so gifting a piece of stylish clothing or designer accessories is a safe bet. Items like luxury handbags, sunglasses, or limited-edition sneakers can make a strong fashion statement. Finding slightly used or new-to-you items on apps like Poshmark can sometimes land you GREAT designer pieces at 75% of their retail value.

Personal Connection

Perhaps the most significant trend in celebrity gifting is the emphasis on a personal connection. Thoughtful letters, heartfelt messages, or meaningful gestures are more important than ever. In an age of material abundance, it’s the intangible emotions that truly matter. We used Letter Joy to send gorgeous, historical letters to both my dad and father-in-law who were HUGE history buffs.

The trends in celebrity gifting provide us with insight into what’s considered stylish, meaningful, and practical in the world of gift-giving. While most of us don’t have the same budget as a celebrity, we can certainly draw inspiration from their choices to create memorable and thoughtful gifts for our loved ones. Whether it’s personalization, sustainability, or the timeless elegance of jewelry, celebrity gifting trends remind us that the sentiment behind the gift matters the most. After all, it’s not about the price tag; it’s about the thought and care that goes into making someone’s day a little brighter.

Until Next Time,

SH Signature

Celebrate Father’s Day with the Best Gifts for Dad!

Father’s Day is just around the corner, and it’s time to show Dad just how much he means to you. And, finding the perfect gift can be a challenge, but fear not! I have curated a list of the best Father’s Day gifts to help you express your love and gratitude for the incredible dads in your life.

The List

  1. Personalized Gifts: Does your dad love to fish, camp, drink, eat, or dress? Why not get him a personalized fishing journal, bag chair, ember mug, cutting board, or shirt?! Nobody will steal his favorite thing anymore because you made it distinctly his.
  2. Tech Gadgets: For the tech-savvy dads out there, consider gifting them the latest gadgets. From JBL clip speakers and wireless headphones (My favorites are the Beats Fit Pro.) to fitness trackers (This article from Wired can help determine which one is best for dad.) and home automation devices, there is a wide range of options to choose from. Whether he loves listening to music, staying fit, or simply enjoys the convenience of a smart home, one of these gifts can help make his life a bit easier.
  3. Experience-based Gifts: Create unforgettable memories with experience-based gifts. Treat your dad to a spa day, a golf lesson, a hot air balloon ride, or tickets to his favorite sporting event or concert. These gifts go beyond material possessions and offer quality time together, allowing you to bond and create lasting moments. The shared experiences will leave a lasting impression and show your dad the thing you love most about this gift, is the time, not the thing.
  4. Grilling Accessories: What Father doesn’t love to fire up the grill? Consider upgrading their grilling gear. High-quality grilling accessories like a set of stainless steel utensils, a digital meat thermometer, or a BBQ smoker kit can take their culinary skills to the next level. These gifts will not only enhance the food but also provide opportunities for fun family cookouts and delicious meals.
  5. Call Me: Or if you don’t have the time to get him a gift, call me! I’ll help. Just fill out the contact us form and I’ll be right there to help out.

No Matter What, It’s Time to Celebrate Dad

Father’s Day is an opportunity to express our love and appreciation for our dads. Whatever you choose, the key is to select something that aligns with your dad’s interests and passions. Remember, the most valuable gift you can give is your time and attention. Be sure to make cherished memories together this Father’s Day!

Until Next Time,

SH Signature

Moms are the best.

Many of my favorite memories are with my mom. Some of my least favorites as well! She’s been there through it all. And with Mother’s Day right around the corner, there’s no better way to show her how much we appreciate her patience and wisdom than by giving her a thoughtful gift. Whether for your mom, grandmom, stepmom, aunt, or any other important mom-figure in your life, there’s a perfect gift for her.

But how do you best celebrate the woman who has nurtured and cared for us? I have a few ideas. 😊

  • Personalized Photo Gifts
    • Personalized photo gifts are a great way to create a unique and sentimental gift. There are many options available, including custom photo books, personalized photo mugs, and canvas prints. You can choose a favorite photo of you and your mom or create a collage of memorable moments. And don’t forget, many local stores carry the perfect frame for that perfect picture.
  • Spa Treatments
    • Spoil your mother with a day of relaxation and pampering at a spa. What, is my mom the only one who had a teenage girl give her major headaches over the years? There are plenty of local spas that have great options for massage, facials, etc.
  • Jewelry
    • Jewelry is a classic gift that never goes out of style. Consider picking a piece that reflects your mother’s personal style or one that holds a special meaning for her. I gave my mom a unique necklace that included the birthstones of her kids and grandkids.
  • Kitchen Gadgets
    • If your mother enjoys cooking or baking, she’ll appreciate a new kitchen gadget that will make her life easier. Check out OXO and Joseph Joseph for cool, modern kitchen-y things.
  • Subscription Boxes
    • Subscription boxes are a fun and unique gift idea that can be tailored to your mother’s interests. There are subscription boxes available for everything from books and beauty products to gardening and crafts. Amazon has SO MANY different ones to choose from, too. Doesn’t get much easier than that!
  • Stationery or Notebooks
    • If your mother loves to write letters or send cards, personalized stationery is a thoughtful gift idea. You can choose from a wide range of designs and styles, including monograms, floral patterns, and custom artwork. An Iowa company called Moglea makes GORGEOUS notebooks and other types of paper products perfect for writing.
  • Bonus

    storyworth gift

    • I think my mom’s favorite gift I ever gave her was the opportunity to write. For her birthday last year, I gifted her storyworth.com. Each week for a year, she got a question to answer. Then she could upload a corresponding picture that reflected that story. (To be clear, I uploaded the pictures…but she could have if she understood how. 😉) At the end of the 52 weeks of questions, you receive a fully bound book. It is a truly wonderful keepsake for the whole family.

Happy Mother’s Day to everyone who has cared for and nurtured us!

Until Next Time,

SH Signature

One of a Kind Show – Chicago

As you all know, I LOVE the One of a Kind Show – Chicago. I’ve posted, talked, and gushed about it for years…so much so that a group of us head there together each December. I find the best, most unique gifts. And since the holidays don’t automatically end on December 25, I thought I’d give you a few gift ideas from the vendors I love at the show.

Gift Ideas

Have a sweet teen in your life? Try whimsyjewelry.com. When I was at her booth, she told me she was inspired to create her active girls necklaces after watching Zendaya in The Greatest Showman! I not only bought a gift for my niece but a super cute girl jump-roper necklace for ME!

For little people, it can be hard to find the right thing that is also ok for the parent. Enter Ames-based The Bubble Haus. They have the cutest soap paints you’ve ever seen. Your little creative can make art AND get clean using them.

What about that hard-to-buy-for sister/aunt/mom/girlfriend? I can tell you sapahn has JUST the right thing for her. They have all the options you’d ever want for her…or that really stylish him!

Hey guys, trust me she called and she REALLY wants one-of-a-kind jewelry. No matter her style, one of these makers has just the right thing for you. Check out:
lockedandlayered.com
my-prysm.com
allisonmooneydesign.com
crosslyne.com
facebook.com/vintageliz
shoprachb.com

How about that foodie person? If you follow Favorable on Facebook, Instagram, or LinkedIn, which you should, you’ll know this next one. Simply Stoneware has GORGEOUS graters that are unlike anything you’ve seen. They’d be GRATE (pun intended) paired with ginger, garlic, or a chunk of parmesan.

Have that guy who has everything? Well, he doesn’t have a Mistura watch, I promise you that. These incredibly unique watches are even more beautiful in person than you’ll see on the website!

I really could go on and on about all the great makers at this show. Remember, even if you can’t get something for the holidays, you can shop these great small business owners for birthdays, anniversaries, bar/bat mitzvahs, and any other occasion…or you can just call me and I’ll have just the right gift ideas for you.

Until we chat again, Happy Holidays and Happy New Year from Favorable.

SH Signature

Previously…

Much like A Christmas Story, there I was.  7 years old.  On the big guy’s lap, providing detailed evidence as to all my nice deeds for the year and clarifying a few naughty moments. My Christmas list was simple and pretty on target for my age group.  I was just about to pounce off when I decided to toss one more wish Kris Kringle’s way. Because, I thought, “It never hurts to ask.”

“And, Santa, I’d really love an 8-track player for Christmas.” I wanted it so badly because listening to my favorite tunes over and over and over and over again would be so GREAT!

He winked, smiled, and moved on to the next kid while I received my complimentary candy cane and Polaroid snapshot. (Photo used for this blog is of me on my Grampa’s lap, but you get the point.)

I’m sure you know what comes next. Just a few weeks from that simple, innocent ask was the Christmas surprise of a lifetime.  An awesome 8-track player under the tree.  That made my whole year and all because I asked.

Now…

What a great reminder as your year and my year come to an end.  Are there any questions you can ask yourself to close out 2022 or prepare for 2023?  Check-in on a key team member and ask how you can help them succeed in 2023?  Reach out to one more client or a prospect and get a coffee on the books for January?

And, as I take my own advice, since it doesn’t hurt to ask, how can I help you this holiday season? If you need help with shopping for your family or friends, or if your company needs an end-of-year recognition and celebration idea, I can make that happen. Just use the Contact Us page and we can make the magic happen for your friends, family, employees, or teammates!

Until we chat again, Happy Holidays and Happy New Year from Favorable.

SH Signature