2021 Early Holiday Shopping Guide Plus Creative Gift Ideas

It has been in the headline news the last several weeks. Media outlets are warning of supply chain breakdowns that are threatening the holiday shopping season with many larger corporations not being able to maintain supply. News sources from Bloomberg, to  USA Today, to CNBC, have stated that a domino effect from the pandemic (production factories closing, labor shortages, a back-up of processing around the globe) will leave everyone with a shortage of gifts to give this holiday season.

Enterra Insights: In Stock, Out of Stock, and On-Shelf Availability

As of October 20th, 2021 there are 66 days until Christmas. While the peak shopping season usually begins in about another month during the ‘Black Friday’ kickoff, news agencies are warning shoppers to not wait but rather start NOW.

Top Reasons There’s No Need to Panic & Why The Shortage Is A Great Opportunity

  1. Perfect Opportunity To Reset- comparable to the 2020 lockdown, where normal everyday life was paused and people had a chance to stop, take account, and refocus their energy and resources, this moment is comparable. When the world took a breather last year, the environment cleared, animals thrived, and a great amount of the population changed how they worked. From changing careers, to choosing to work from home more of the time, and learning the value of their time and talents.
  2. A Change In Mindset– do you normally shop at big businesses, larger chain stores? With that possibly no longer an option, you can look local, look to smaller businesses and support your local economy. Shopping locally helps support your hometown economy, your tax base, and supports the planet (think no more international shipping costs).
  3. Be Part Of A Circular Economy– a linear economy, meaning a product goes from being produced, bought, used, and then trashed is non-productive and part of the problem creating our massive trash issue across the nation. A circular economy goes from ‘buy & toss’ to looking at ways to keep products in circulation for longer periods of time while also using materials that are regenerative. How to take advantage of this action in gift giving- some examples would be choosing to purchase refurbished electronics instead of buying new; choosing to shop at second hand markets rather than buying new items online that also require shipping costs and impacts.
  4. Share Your Values– if you support sustainable values and eco-friendly and/or eco-conscious choices, then you have an opportunity with your gift giving to share those values with your gift recipients. This Sustainable Gift Guide outlines all the ways you can shop sustainable and eco-friendly options of gifts for everyone on your wishlist.
  5. There’s Abundance All Around– there is such an over abundance of products, services, and memories to give that there is no chance of running out of gifts to share with others. You may need to adjust how you think of shopping or gift giving but rest assured that you will be able to make everyone happy on your list.

ECO-GIFT GUIDE- choosing any of these options below is not only thoughtful but also practical, meaningful, and eco-friendly. 

Physical Gifts– This means choosing products, items, and tangible gifts to place in a loved one’s hands. To remain eco-friendly, choose homemade or second hand options. For example, right now in the Bay Area there is a warehouse full of high-quality gently used items in categories including:

  • Apparel
  • Appliances- large & small
  • Art 
  • Cameras
  • Computers
  • Furniture
  • Games
  • Jewelry
  • Memorabilia
  • Mirrors
  • Music
  • Phones
  • Rugs
  • Sports Equipment
  • Tools
  • TV’s
  • And MORE!

Browse this warehouse called The Local Flea online and take a gander at all the wonderful selections available. New inventory arrives every week.

Service Gifts– These are wonderful gift ideas to give and are appreciated by everyone. A service gift means gifting someone a service instead of a physical item or product. Some ideas:

  • A massage
  • A night of babysitting so parents can go out
  • Hire a cleaning service for someone
  • Do errands or shopping trips for those in need
  • Hire a food prep or meal delivery service
  • Pet sitting or dog walking is a great service to give

Event & Experience Gifts– Many people will remember events and the experience of creating new memories while trying new things longer than any other gift. Here are some ideas to consider:

·  Art class lessons

·  Dance classes

·  Gym membership

·  Life shows or theatre tickets

·  Master classes- from cooking, to writing, to music and more

·  Paddle boarding to parasailing

·  Rock climbing lessons

·  Spa day

·  Sporting event tickets

·  Symphony or concert tickets

·  Water sport- skiing, diving, snorkeling

·  Zip lining

Personal Gifts– This category of gifts are for those who are crafty, are artistic and also creative. Handmade gifts, or gifts where you are giving your time and your attention. This guide has almost 50 homemade thoughtful gifts you can craft at home. Some other ideas include:

  • Organize or renovate a room, or patio, closet, kids space, for someone
  • Gather their photos and make albums for them
  • Cook a meal for them or with them
  • Do garden work for them
  • Take them on a picnic
  • Plant trees in their honor
  • Write a thoughtful letter or poem or art piece

Summary: Creative gift giving not only will save you money, it will help you stick to your eco-conscious values, help save the environment, create memories and meaning for a long time to come, and will fulfill your heart as well. Experiences over things are also very sustainable and enjoyable gifts to consider. Experiences create a memory that will last and can create a much deeper bond with people that are involved in the activity, particularly for children.  These sustainable gifts are something different from the norm and can be a really refreshing experience for both you and the gift receiver. 

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