Christmas day is fast approaching and heart-warming holiday advertisements and malls bursting with merchandise assure us if we can find the perfect gift our holidays will be a success. Of course, we all want to show our loved ones and friends how much we cherish them, but is another scarf, scented candle, or electronic gadget really the answer?
Instead of giving more stuff, it might be time to simplify our own lives and the lives of our family and friends by giving local community experiences this Christmas. Here are seven clutter-free gifts ideas to give and share.
1. Food for thought
For either the gourmet in your life or the friend who can’t boil water, a cooking class is the perfect gift. Eden West offers a variety of cooking classes in their professional kitchen. Learn cooking tips and techniques from chefs, enjoy the meal you make, and take home all the recipes.
2. Inspire a masterpiece
Give the gift of art. Place des arts in Coquitlam has a huge selection of classes for budding writers, artists, and actors. Explore felting with your pre-schooler, send your little drama queen to musical theatre, or give your texting teens an outlet for their stories with a creative writing class.
3. Give to others
There are many ways to help others less fortunate this holiday season. Make being of service your gift this year. The SHARE food bank serves Tri-Cities individuals and families in need. Rather than buying each other more stuff, get your family together and donate a holiday meal. Check out the website for hours and most-needed items.
4. Spirit and soul
In our busy lives, we could all use more quiet time to reflect, relax, and rejuvenate. Massages, yoga classes, and time to mediate are all luxuries that we often deny ourselves. Give someone you love the time to take care of spirit and soul. Veracis Wellness offers personal meditation courses, aromatherapy massage, intuitive readings, and more.
5. Local suds
Port Moody boasts three new craft breweries on Murray Street. What better gift for the hard-to-buy for friend than a gift card for good conversation over a flight of locally brewed beer at Yellow Dog Brewing, Moody Ales, or Twin Sails Brewing. Or take home a refillable growler for the serious beer drinker in your house.
6. Curtain call
You can give comedy, dance, music, indie movies, and live theatre all with one present. A gift card to the Evergreen Cultural Centre allows the friend who loves live entertainment to choose from individual performances or a Theatre Series package.
7. Get fit
Many of us will be making a new year’s resolution to be healthier next year, especially after a season of eggnog and shortbread. Give friends or family the gift of fitness from the Port Moody Recreation Centre. The rec centre has a variety of passes with both individual and family rates. Each pass includes access to the weight room; drop-in classes of aerobics, yoga, and spinning; the walk/run indoor track; the steam room and whirlpool.
These are just a few local options for clutter-free gifts. Get creative, think local, and give experiences over stuff this year.