Family-Centered Gift Ideas for Grown-Ups

Gift ideas for grown-ups can be hard to come by.  Many of the adults I know (like my in-laws, for example) have pretty much everything they need.  If new tools or new cookware doesn’t seem like THE THING this year, read on for some meaningful gift ideas.  Many adults appreciate family-centered activities, games, and books.  I’ve gathered lots of possibilities for your gift-giving pleasure this year.

Experiences and Activities

Several of the experiences and activities I shared last week for teenagers and the week before for kids are really family activities, so they may be great gifts for adults as well.  Many of the ideas you saw here a few weeks ago, gift ideas for the whole family, are excellent for grown-ups, too.  The key to a great family-centered gift is to choose something you don’t normally do, and make sure you do it together.

I’ve already mentioned Heather Lynne’s ideas at Raising Memories, and several would be great for grown-ups, such as:

  • overnight getaway
  • hot air balloon ride
  • pottery class
  • road trip

Games

When my husband’s grandmother was in her 80s, she had ALS.  We picked her name for the family gift exchange one year, and we really wanted to give her something she could do without the use of her hands.  We found a lovely little game that I now can’t remember the name of that was absolutely perfect!  The game was just about telling your story and talking about memories.  Reminiscing was something she liked to do anyway, and it was a nice way to start family conversations and find out new parts of her life story.

That game for Grandma reminds me a lot of a new game called Roots & Branches by The Connections Games.  It’s a board game with questions in four categories:  Your Family, Your Ancestors, About You, and Nice to Know.  As players move and answer questions, they have a chance to share experiences and learn about their family.  This is a great game for making connections between generations.

From the Heart

Gifts from the heart are pretty much a shoe-in for grown-ups.  Here are 4 heartfelt gift ideas I love for adults:

  1. I love this sweet idea from The Gifty Girl:  kid-crafted dish towels.  This is such a heartfelt gift from grandkids that they can DIY–older kids can write or draw and younger kids can paint or stamp.
  2. I think family cookbooks are a heartfelt gift grown-ups can enjoy, too.  Family meals and special recipes are full of memories and comfort.  (That link shows just one style of family cookbooks that can be personalized with photos, but there are a lot more here.)
  3. Rhonda Lauritzen and Rachel Trotter at Evalogue.life just wrote a great little booklet of thoughtful questions to ask someone who is writing their life story or wants to interview someone for their life story.  I think this would be a lovely gift for someone with an aging parent.
  4. I’m guessing I’m not the only tired adult out there, so I will say that the simple act of telling someone what you love and appreciate about him/her is a great gift.  A “Reasons I Love You” gift is inexpensive but literally lasts forever!

Incorporate Family Traditions

Like my husband’s grandmother, adults sometimes like to reminisce about the good old days.  A great way to preserve those warm, fuzzy memories is through recording family traditions.  What do you do at Thanksgiving?  What is your Christmas Eve tradition?  What is your favorite holiday and why?

Here are two ideas I really love for recording traditions:

  1. Does the adult you’re searching for a gift for have a lot of Christmas tree ornaments?  If so, were they inherited, or are they part of a collection?  I love this idea for making a record of all your ornaments in a Little Book of Christmas Ornaments!  I counted last year, and I have over 200, so this might be a great gift for myself.  😉
  2. What about gathering a collection of photos and memories from past holidays to make a record of your favorite family traditions?  What special foods do you have every year?  I love this “How We Keep Christmas” book!  I’ve made a similar one, and it’s neat to see our family grow from Christmas to Christmas.  It includes our traditional Christmas Eve Danish Rice Pudding recipe, of course!

Special Ideas

What special ideas did you find on this month’s #familyhistoryfriday posts?  I hope you found great gift ideas that will be heartfelt, make memories, and/or make connections.  Be sure to Pin them to save for next year, too!

Here’s one more thought for the road:  In my family, we keep an “I’d Like” list on our fridge all year round.  When you think of something you’d like to receive as a gift, you write it on the list.  As the giver, it can come in handy when you aren’t sure what someone would like as a gift.

~Jennifer  #familyhistoryfriday


References

  1. Evalogue.Life. (2017). Facebook. Retrieved from https://www.facebook.com/EvalogueLife/
  2. Heritage Makers. (2017). Pinterest. Retrieved from https://www.pinterest.com/pin/511721576388396959/
  3. Heritage Makers. (2017). Pinterest. Retrieved from https://www.pinterest.com/pin/511721576402122732/
  4. Raising Memories. (2013). Retrieved from http://www.raisingmemories.com/2013/12/ultimate-list-100-non-toy-gift-ideas.html
  5. The Gifty Girl. (2017). Retrieved from http://www.thegiftygirl.com/easy-kid-crafted-dish-towels-grandmas-will-treasure/
  6. Wise, Jennifer. (2017). Pinterest. Retrieved from https://www.pinterest.com/pin/511721576396984566/
  7. Your Family Tree the Game. (2017). Retrieved from http://yourfamilytreethegame.com/roots-branches/

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Jennifer Wise

I'm Jennifer, and I'm passionate about connections.I enjoy helping people discover the very real benefits of preserving stories, photos, and memories because of the impact they have on children, families, and individuals. I blog weekly at www.lifetalesbooks.blogspot.com sharing tips, ideas, solutions, and inspiration, and I'm over at www.heritagemakers.com/jenniferwise, too. Learn more about me at the "About" tab.

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8 thoughts on “Family-Centered Gift Ideas for Grown-Ups

  1. Love this post! We do lots of experiences and homemade gifts and all sorts of creative things over the holidays to make them about special and family, not about swapping gift cards! Definitely going to incorporate some of your shares!

  2. Great ideas! Thank you for sharing.

    Our favorite “experience” gift for the whole family was the opportunity to swim with dolphins! It was unqiue and memorable.

    Ever since they were young, our daughters made homemade gifts to give the grandparents and “grand-friends.” This tradition continutes now that we have a teen and tween!

    • So glad you enjoyed them, Ashley. 🙂 Swimming with dolphins! My boys did that a couple years ago and it was AMAZING! What a great gift. And I love that your homemade gift tradition continues. So sweet!

    • Yes, a family cookbook is really an amazing gift. It “keeps on giving,” and it’s so meaningful. Do you have access to your grandma’s recipes? That would make a sweet gift for siblings and cousins, I’m sure. It’s so interesting how integral food and recipes really are to a family and to memories.