Do you think that making your loved ones happy means spending crazy amounts of money on gifts? We believe that there are other ways to show people that we love them. And that we can give them something other than just an item. Or we can choose something more lasting. It spreads happiness and has meaning.
7 gift ideas for lasting memories
Inspired by the pyramid of ethical gifts (image in French), we first propose the alternative to not buy anything. Complicated? No. We can still spread cheer with a different kind of gift:
- a cultural experience: give a theatre membership, a concert ticket (with or without you), a painting made by your artist friend.
- an occasion: plan a weekend camping trip, a picnic, game night.
- a skill: are you a masseuse? Give a “coupon” for a massage. Hair stylist? an appointment for a haircut is always great.
- a tip: share your knowledge about sushi, painting, Marie Kondo-style organization.
- time: offer to play personal chef at Uncle Joe’s house one or more times each year. Give your sister a “coupon” to watch her kids once a month.
- for the involved: give ideas for how to consume differently. Enroll your loved one in a zero waste course or give them a Usitoo gift card.
- collaborative: suggest that your family volunteer together for a good cause.
In addition to being more sustainable, all of these ideas avoid the stress of running around stores.
“Things were created to be used. People were created to be loved. The reason why the world is in chaos, is because things are being loved and people are being used.” (Unknown)
Still want to give an item? 5 sustainable gift ideas
Some people have a need (or obligation) to give a physical item. Either because it’s a family tradition or a work activity. So, spend on sustainable and alternative products. Some examples?
- homemade: delicacies, decor, practical or artistic items; do-it-yourself is the best way to personalize something according to the recipient’s tastes.
- second-hand: in boutiques or online, there are tons of items (sometimes new!) that are awaiting a new life.
- ethical: if you really want to give something, choose fair trade. Even better, offer a basket of fair trade ingredients. It’s practical all year-round, with honey, cacao, coconut oil, etc.
- ecological: consider giving a tree, tomato seeds or a book on permaculture.
- for the involved, again: inspire your loved ones to embark on a zero waste journey. You could give a reusable water bottle, tawashis, jars, a book on zero waste.
Do you see now what we mean? But, above all, has this helped broaden your perspective?
What do we do with gifts we don’t like?
If you receive a gift that you won’t use, give it a second chance at life. Storing it or throwing it away are neither good for you or the planet. So you might as well find a solution that makes sense right away.
You have several options:
- resell: post it on the Internet (2ememain.be, Facebook), at flea markets or other exchanges, in your office’s announcement area or at stores.
- offer it to someone in need: we all know a neighbour or friend who may not get gifts this year. An anonymous gift is sometimes even nicer.
- donate to a charity: needs are high now across all areas (poverty, animals, north/south solidarity, etc.).
- exchange it for Usitoo points.
Here at Usitoo, we collect all of the items cluttering your space. Like impractical or unused gifts. We give them a second life. Useless for some could be useful for others. Give our gift card. It’s worth it! It allows your loved ones to rent anything they need. And there’s a lot to choose from. Browse our extensive catalogue.