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Quick, Simple Steps To the Perfect Gift
Gifts from the Heart Are Never Out of Style

Last minute gifts, with loveThe holiday shopping season has arrived. And unless you are one of those super-organized people who has been shopping since last December, you are probably starting to get that anxiety that comes from trying to match a small budget to a too-long gift list.

And the clock is ticking!

While sweaters and socks are very nice, and always appreciated, you might just want to give gifts with a little more pizazz this year. And - joy! - they're either a click away, or as close as your family photo library...

A gift that shows your love and friendship is never the wrong gift and never goes out of style.

One of the best presents is a gift of a shared past. Photos from fun times - in a special frame or a small album - are not only fun to give, but will have you smiling at the memories as you prepare it. If you choose an album, add funny captions for an extra treat and you're sure to score points for one of the more thoughtful gifts of the season.

Gift certificates may seem like impersonal gifts, but they can be a real hit if well-thought out. A gift card for long distance calls, for example, gives you a connection with a distant friend or relative.

For the budding artist, a gift certificate for art supplies is perfect. The movie buff will appreciate a certificate for tickets, and the opera fan will never stop thanking you for the gift of tickets to, say, La Bohème. The fanatic gardener might appreciate a certificate from a favorite garden nursery or catalog.

Just find out what the people on your list like to do, or where they love to shop. Even men love to shop, if the shopping is for tools or electronics A good three-course meal in the form of a gift certificate can also be the ideal present, especially if you plan a lunch or dinner and go together...

A twist on the theme of gift certificates are IOUs. Young parents will think an IOU for twelve nights of babysitting is the best present ever! Once a month they can enjoy a date with no worries about who's minding the baby and your thoughtfulness will be remembered even after the baby is in college.

How about an IOU for cleaning up your favorite handyman's work area (with a solemn promise not to rearrange the tools). Think about the people in your life and what they really want, or need.

Not having enough time or money is no reason for anyone not to enjoy the holidays.

Remember that the best gifts are not necessarily the most expensive and value is not always measured in pretty paper and bows. Giving presents that take thought makes you focus on how special the people in your life are and how much happiness they've given you.

That's a guaranteed Christmas recipe for a very happy holiday.

More about simple gift ideas around the Web:

24 Quick and Cheap DIY Christmas Ideas

25 handmade gifts for under $5


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