Time to think out the box with birthday gifts

Every year they happen and they happen to all of us, there is no escaping it. We’re talking birthdays of course the annual markers that track the passing of time and our inevitable aging. We mark them with parties and gifts, which, if we are honest, are sometimes more token presents than anything else. A bottle of wine or a box of chocolates. Maybe a meal out. So often gifts, which should delight and surprise, are mundane and thoughtless. But they don’t need to be, with a little thought and maybe a degree of group collaboration there is plenty of scope to surprise and delight. Here are a few ideas of out the box gifts that the recipient will never see coming.

A botanical make over

How about getting together with a few friends to pay for a garden makeover. If not the actual makeover itself at least talk to somebody who can plot the way forward. If you don’t know one, use the internet to find the right person. Search for something like garden landscaping Sydney and see what comes up. You should be able to find a professional in your area who can design and conceptualize a garden plan for you. The actual implementation might be quite costly and is perhaps something left for the recipient to finalize, but it sets the ball rolling and in many instances allows the beneficiary to start a process they would not otherwise have done.

The gift of time

Sometimes the most needed thing is the one thing that money can’t buy – time. But it is something that you can gift a friend, and it is really easy to do. Where do they need cover or help? If they have children it is pretty easy. Offer to babysit or look after the kids while the parents head out for a show or some dinner. Take the children to the park or offer to do some shopping. For a parent of young children, even half an hour to do your own thing is a blessing. It really is an easy thing to give and it means a lot, probably more than you will ever know, to the recipient.

Make something by hand

A great Dutch tradition is hand making a gift that speaks to the recipient’s quirks and foibles. Something that might not be completely practical, but which says, ‘I know you and I get you’ in a way that a bought gift could never do. It’s about investing the time to make the gift and about spending some time thinking about the recipient and creating a truly unique present that is fun and inspired.

Gifts that keep on giving


Once the fun of the birthday has dissipated it’s another year before some more parties and presents roll around. That’s normally the case anyway, but it doesn’t have to be. Think about a gift that keeps on giving. A subscription to a magazine, shopping website or an annual pass to a museum or a venue that is close to the beneficiaries heart are great ways to extend the birthday love beyond the usual birthday window.

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