Holiday Gifts: Tickets, Gift Certificates and IOU's
One way to handle the "what to buy" dilemma at the holidays is by purchasing a pair of tickets to an event that you know the recipient will enjoy. Especially nice when you are getting something that they wouldn't necessarily buy for themselves. I say a "pair" of tickets because most events are better if you can take someone with you.
A pair of tickets or a season subscription for any playhouse for those who like watching plays. They don't have to be Broadway, or even off-Broadway, productions. There are a great number of amateur playhouses (some that also serve dinner) and many communities, colleges and even some high schools put on performances that are highly enjoyable. The same goes for concerts, check your local chamber of commerce to see what your community offers. There's nothing like an outdoor concert under the stars to help shed the day's tension quickly.
Another possibility is a pair of tickets to any sporting event from football to racing to hockey. They don't have to be tickets to watch a professional team to be appreciated. You can find local AAA teams, college teams and high school teams that are just as much fun to watch, if not more so, than any National League team. The tickets are a fraction of the cost of the big leagues and the variety of food, beverages and souvenirs will rival any pro stadium.
Getting NASCAR or Indy tickets can be nearly impossible and very expensive. Local tracks offer stock car, sprint car, and demolition races that will get your adrenaline going just as well for about $10-$15 dollars and most tracks will allow you back in the pit area after the races so you can talk to the driver's and get pictures of your favorite cars. This one is great for entire families. Even young kids love to watch the cars run and you haven't seen anything until you've watched buses run a figure eight race!
Gift certificates are a great way to go when you really don't know what to get. You can get gift certificates for just about any store or restaurant. If you aren't even sure what stores and restaurants they frequent you can get a gift certificate from most chambers of commerce that are good in any place of business in the city that accepts checks.
A gift certificate for a service is also nice. A day at a spa is a welcome gift for anyone, (even men like the pampering of a good massage). Facials, manicures, pedicures, massages, steam baths, and mud packs in just about any combination you could want.
Have a set of new parents on your list? Sit down at your computer and design an I. O. U. from you entitling them to one evening or one day's babysitting. Do you have young children who need a gift for grandma? Let them design an I. O. U. for a hug and a kiss, or they can make one for their parents gifting one hour helping with housework or one car wash or anything else that strikes their imagination.