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14

Christmas Stocking Stuffers – Where to Find Them, How to Wrap Them; the Stocking Stuffer Extravaganza Finale!

WELCOME TO DAY 5 OF THE STOCKING STUFFER EXTRAVAGANZA!

We’re wrapping up (pun not originally intended – but it works) the stocking stuffer extravaganza with great tips on where to buy stocking stuffers and ideas on how to wrap them. You already know you can go on-line and find almost anything you want – and that may be a good choice for those hard-to-find specialty items. But for most of our stocking stuffers we don’t want to pay more for postage and so-called ‘handling’ than the price of the gift. We need to search locally s for our stocking-stuffer treasures.

Christmas Stocking Stuffer Extravaganza - Day 5

PLACES TO SHOP FOR STOCKING STUFFERS

1. Savvy store-owners cluster great options for stocking stuffers around the place customers have to wait to pay. Peruse the check-out lanes at the following:

  • Grocery Stores – candy bars, mints, gum, batteries, nail clippers, magazines, novelty toys, gift cards . . .
  • Book stores – mini books, high-end candy, bookmarks, pens, novelty writing instruments, small games, reading glasses . . .
  • Liquor stores – one ounce nips, miniature cocktails, drink recipes, miniature bottles of wineStocking stuffer ideas - theater candy . . .
  • Electronic stores – earbuds, electronic hand-held games, car gadgetry, novelty toys, flashdrives, theater-size candy . . .
  • Office supply stores – mini calendars, highlighters, pens, candy, stressballs . . .
  • Craft/hobby stores – glue, batteries, glitter, novelty toys, candy, small crafting supplies . . .
  • Bed/bath stores – hand cream, novelty kitchen items like vegetable scrubbers, other stuff you didn’t know existed . . .
  • Fabric stores – closures, thread, fasteners, buttons, needles, pins, stain removal, tape measure . . .
  • Drug stores – cookie packages, candy, gum, mints, key covers, chapstick, novelty items . . .

2. The pen/pencil aisle of office supply or discount stores – pens, pencils, post-its, highlighters

Stocking stuffer ideas3. Drug store snack aisle – small packages of nuts, cookies, potato chips, popcorn

Stocking stuffer ideasstocking stuffer ideas

 

 

 

 

 

 

4. Bed and Bath type stores usually have a wall where small personal items can be found. It’s a great place to look for things like sleep masks, hand-held massagers, hand treatment gloves, foot treatment socks, bath brushes, novelty lights, and other things you didn’t know you needed until you see them there.

Who knew sleep masks came in so many styles? (courtesy of www.notonthehighstreet.com)

Who knew sleep masks came in so many styles?
(courtesy of www.notonthehighstreet.com)

5. At  bed/bath stores,’superstores’ like Target and Walmart, as well as gourmet food/pantry type stores, there is a wall or aisle with all sort of small kitchen gadgets and utensils perfect for stocking stuffing. Check out the baking aisle, too.

 

Courtesy of www.yelp.com

Courtesy of www.yelp.com

6. FREE. Yes, that’s always a nice option. Here are some places to get supplemental stuffers at no cost

  •  Recipes and recipe cards – Kitchenware stores, grocery store displays, big-box-store food sample tables, internet
  • Paint sticks/stirrers – hardware store
  • Knit/crochet patterns – next to yarn at hobby stores, internet
  • Perfume/cologne/make-up samples – if you purchase products like Avon or Mary Kay, sometimes your distributor has samples to try
  • Woodwork patterns – internet

WRAPPING STOCKING STUFFERS is always optional. Following are a few tips/ideas for presentation.

  1. Cut down packaging such as the cardboard back around things like lipstick and flashdrives.
  2. Open up packages with multiple items and put them in separately. For instance, a 3-pack of four-ounce coffee beans can turn into 3 packs of coffee – it not only fits better, it’s 3 separate surprises.
  3. Just take a few samples out of boxes of things like teabags and hot chocolate envelopes (it’s cheaper than buying less single servings) and put the remainders away to be shared later.
  4. Slide rolled-up  magazines, brochures, or those free patterns you’ve downloaded into an empty paper towel tube and wrap.
  5. T-shirts, tank tops, socks, and undies can also be tucked into paper towel tubes. Even f it sticks out at both ends – just cover the whole thing with wrapping paper and tie each end with a ribbon past the point of where the item extends past the end of the tube.
  6. Toilet paper roll tubes can be used for smaller items like (some) undies and hankies.
  7. Lidded empty Crystal Light type containers can be used to harness things like pens, hair ornaments, and candy,  making it easier to wrap.
  8. Gifts can be layered for a ‘twofer’ result. For instance, a bandana can be wrapped around a mini flashlight for a double surprise. Or a gift card can be tucked into a sock.

If you missed any of the EXTRAVAGANZA, catch up with the following posts: Stocking Stuffers $5 or Less; 75 One-Size-Fits-All Stocking Stuffers; Stocking Stuffers for HIM or Her, Themed Stocking Stuffers; and (the post that started it all) 7 Ways to Get Back the Childhood Magic of the Holidays.

Stocking Stuffer Extravaganza Finale

 

22

Thanksgiving Table Talk

Thanksgiving Table Talk

One of the ways to put the THANKS back into Thanksgiving mentioned in an earlier article is having paper and pencil at each dinner place so that those gathered could share what they were thankful for during the meal. A fun alternative to that exercise is the use of Thanksgiving conversation cards. Get some thought-provoking and potentially hilarious conversations going at the dinner table by reading questions out for the gobblers to answer while they’re eating. Here are some links to printable conversation cards or topic lists to get you started.

For a list of questions that will have the different generations interacting in a new way, click here to get AARP’s printout.

Courtesy of www.aarp.org

Courtesy of www.aarp.org

 

If you’re looking for some cards that are already made up with fun topics and ready to print out, click here to visit skiptomylou.com

Courtesy of skiptomylou.org

Courtesy of skiptomylou.org

 

You can find an interesting list of questions that incorporate the original Thanksgiving ready to be printed out by clicking here to visit www.bnute.com.

Courtesy of www.bnute.com

Courtesy of www.bnute.com

 

Whether you print off the conversation starters above or just use them as inspiration for your own conversation cards, Thanksgiving dinner chat is bound to be more interesting than ever! The upside to using conversation cards is the interesting things you learn about family and friends. The downside to using them is you might find out you’re more like that crazy cousin than you would have liked to know!

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