Lipstick & Danger

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The Lumpy Gift Giver

Do you ever give a gift to someone special in your life that makes you feel like you really didn’t try very hard to find just the right thing? Is it because they have everything or maybe possess a special talent that might defy a reasonable choice so you give up? Maybe you just grab something off that last minute gift aisle. Then you might be a lumpy gift giver. Those special people can’t be lumped in with Aunt Betty or Grandma Rea. Bass Pro gifts are great for the son-in-law and dad but what about teachers, pastors, postmen, best friends or the creative people in your life?

We all have someone on our Christmas list that is impossible to buy for each year. You try and keep track of trends, Pinterest cuties, sales and local markets. Yet, some gifts still elude even the cleverest of shoppers. I love to make lists for these items each year so my readers will stop throwing up their hands in frustration. Sometimes the little things are really the best things. I’m going to cover only two groups today.


Having been a teacher for many years I’ve received my share of cute and heart-warming gifts. It was always appreciated when a family took the time to remember me, even if it was a sweet homemade card. I loved them all. Let’s do these hard-working folks first.

  1. Gift cards (restaurants, bookstores, massages, Starbucks, Panera to name a few.)
  2. Magazine subscription
  3. Chocolate (Trust me. You’ll be a god for this.)
  4. Donate school supplies for classroom
  5. To-Go coffee mug that actually keeps drinks cold or hot.
  6. Variety of teas or coffees
  7. Gloves
  8. Socks or slippers (Maybe a pair to keep at school)
  9. Lotions
  10. CD of ocean waves. Very relaxing on that conference period.


This is the fun one for me. Since I’m a full-time writer, I really know a lot about this one. I usually get some cool goodies from the kids at my house because they know how I roll. Maybe you have a writer friend, student in a writing class, belong to a writer group of some kind or have become a closet dreamer of becoming a writer. This list is for you. Even if you are planning to be a blogger or keep a journal, this list might be worth sharing for that person who says, “You’re so hard to buy for!” Besides, I’m betting everyone reading this can find at least one thing they’d like on this list.

  1. Journals/Notebooks – I have a ton of these. But there are a few I adore. My son got me one last year that is very functional and handsome. I keep one for ideas, a small one in my purse (that’s right, for ideas that hit me while standing at the cashiers at Walmart), one for each project I create and so on. You can’t have too many. Well, that’s what I keep telling myself every time I see one. Amazon has a ton if you aren’t into hitting the mall this time of year. Some of my best ones have come from there.

Then there are these functional gifts.

  1. Writing Books – Now if you’re buying something for Nora Roberts or Steve Berry, skip this one. Even though I’ve been doing this for about six years, I still find it helpful to read marketing books and goal setting books for my projects. I’m always looking for that next big thing or an edge on Nora Roberts. (I don’t think she feels threatened at all, unfortunately.) Here are a few I’ve ordered recently and will use them to set my goals for 2020 and hopefully, increase productivity.
  2. Calendar – Just ordered this one for a friend. I bought myself one several months ago. “Butt to Chair” looks pretty good however. Wish I’d seen that first.
  3. Pens/Markers/Flash Drives/Sticky Notes/Scissors/Tape/Small container for Flash Drives

Some things I’ve bought for myself and love to give as gifts too.

  1. Writing Gloves – I bought my gloves from Storiarts.com. The cool thing about them is that you can choose a book to be the theme. My hands often get cold in the winter months. Storiarts has some other cool things with those same themes, like scarves and pillows. They can be pricey but there is usually a sale going on. You can also check out Amazon. (I guess that was a no brainer.) I also have a tighter fit pair from Walgreens that maybe is more for someone with arthritis but they still work great and feels like a hug when you wear them. They were just $14.
  2. Gift cards to Hobby Lobby (writers do book signings and are always on the lookout for clever things to make for swag or use as giveaways), Office Depot, Walmart (more supplies), Etsy, Vista Print.

Have you thought of these ideas?

  1. Become one of their Street Team Members, Advanced Reader Team, Host a Release Party or Tea.
  2. Coffee – Writers drink a lot of coffee and tea. My go to coffee is Ganoderma made with a mushroom extract. My brother calls it hippy coffee. I call it Nirvana and buy it by the case. Each box has 20 packets with the sugar and nondairy creamer already added. A case is six boxes. There are a number of other choices. It’s easy for me to slip in my purse, briefcase or luggage when I travel.
  3. Coffee Mug – I hesitate to add this one because many of us have our special cup we use. I collect Polish Pottery and I swear my coffee tastes better in those cups. But I am a sucker for a clever cup. When I get one now as a gift, I often put my pens and markers in them for my desk. Cute and functional. Author, Lisa Medley, honored me with a cup that had a similar book cover of one of the books I released titled, Dark Side of Morning. It is still one of my favs. I love it!  
  4. Comfort Clothes Plus – PJs, socks, house shoes, sweaters, sweats, throws (I love my new Sherpa one from Kirkland’s and it was under $20.)
  5. Feel Good Moments – We sit a lot so sometimes we just need a little goodness to keep things stirred up. Lotions such as Hempz. I love my neck warmer too. Just pop it in the microwave for 90 seconds and place it around your neck or wherever you have stiffness or pain.
  6. Authors as a rule are introverted. Writing is a solitary life. Invite us out for coffee or lunch. It might just help us get over that writer’s block.
  7. Goodie Basket – Just get creative on this one. You have some ideas now so you’ll have plenty of things to make a writer’s day.

Hope this has given you some ideas. Don’t be a lumpy gift giver. Just remember both these groups love to read and B&N or Amazon cards are always a good way to let those special people in your life choose a gift that will remind them of you for a long time.

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