5 Meaningful Gifts that Won’t Break the Bank

I wrote a post about this some time ago–how so often we are faced with finding a gift for someone who seems to have everything. What should we give him/her? Most people–especially older and wiser people who have learned the meaning of time-well-spent–would love nothing more than TIME WITH LOVED ONES. They know that experiences are almost always better than possessions.

And so this holiday, I offer to you a few ideas for gifts  for the Nature Lovers in your life that cost little or nothing but that mean a whole lot.

The bottom line is Give people EXPERIENCES rather than possessions.


Do you know research has been done on gift-giving and and that overwhelmingly studies show that people get more happiness from EXPERIENCES rather than possessions which makes sense if you think about it–the experience allows you to anticipate the event, get excited about it, then participate in it, and then afterwards, enjoy the memories of the event. Studies show that even when things go wrong, people often look back on the minor mishaps with humor and overall, the edges get softened so that the moments seem even sweeter than they actually were. Giving experiences is really the gift that KEEPS ON GIVING!

The average child in the developed world owns over 200 toys but only plays with 12 of them on average per day!

Even crazier? Only 3% of the world’s children live in the US, but they own 40+% of the world’s toys!

According to becomingminimalist.com The United States has upward of 50,000 storage facilities, more than five times the number of Starbucks. The New York Times states that 1 out of every 10 Americans rent offsite storage—the fastest growing segment of the commercial real estate industry over the past four decades.

So how to avoid giving possessions? Think outside of the box!

Here are a few ideas:

  • Membership to their local Arboretum, Botanical garden or Nature Center or park
  • If they live close to a National Park, you could give a year Park Pass.
  • Museum or Science center memberships
  • Local attraction season passes
  • Inspire new hobbies such as camping or hiking with equipment necessary for those activities. Or how about a guide book telling where to go hiking, or fishing or canoeing.

For those that live in the same town as you or nearby, think about shared experiences, GIVE YOUR TIME, which honestly is the best gift you can ever offer:

1a2-TAKE someone on your list on a

  • hike
  • or a picnic
  • fishing if that’s your passion
  • or swimming in the secret spot only you know about
  • drive a new road to a new park
  • or offer to go camping for a weekend
  • host a campfire


But are you thinking, “How can I GIVE that? How do you wrap an experience?” Be creative! Make a coupon. Create a mini book with pictures or information. How about making a dvd about this future experience? Or wrap something in a box that is a hint or a necessary piece of equipment, like a headlamp for a camping trip or a picnic blanket for a picnic.

This will get them excited for it and then you can choose a date together and MAKE IT HAPPEN. 

Here’s a LINK to a website with 46 experiences you can give.

Let me know what you think or what ideas you have. Maybe you’ve already thought of the perfect experience to give….why not share it with others?


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