With the Christmas season fast approaching, it is time to start making up those lists and coming up with gift ideas. Over the years I have found that the sooner I make my list and start thinking of gift ideas for each person on my list, the less hectic things are in those final weeks before Christmas.
I already wrote up a list of the hottest Christmas gifts for 2012, but I wanted to provide a few more gift ideas for specific people. I have broken things down by categories so that whether you need a gift for a woman or man you have a few ideas to choose from. Of course, electronic gifts can be a good choice for either gender.
Best Electronic Gifts
This year is definitely the year of the tablet. But unlike last Christmas, there are more affordable options than just the iPad. I already covered the Kindle Fire and the new line of Kindle eReaders in the Hottest Christmas Gifts 2012 list but I thought I would share just a few more of the best electronic gifts as these are great gift ideas for teens and college-students.
While the Kindle Fire HD has gained much of the attention in the tablet market, Apple’s iPad is still alive and kicking and expected to continue to be popular for years to come. If you have people on your list who already own an iPad, an accessory for the iPad is a great gift idea.
Some ideas on an iPad accessory gift are a wireless keyboard, a carrying case, or a tablet stand. Another great gift would be a portable battery pack or Bluetooth speakers. Just make sure that whatever you buy is compatible with either the iPad or iPad 2, depending on which the person you are buying for has.
I said that tablets are the hot electronic gift of the year. But the truth is that not everyone can afford an iPad. While the Kindle Fire is a very affordable tablet option, it is only a 7 inch tablet which may not appeal to everyone. The other affordable option is one of the many Android tablets on the market.
Personally, I think the Kindle Fire provides the most bang for the buck as an Android tablet. But other popular options in both 7 inch and 10 inch tablets include the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2, the Google Nexus 7, and the Coby Kyros.
This little box allows streaming of movies and other content directly onto your television. As an Apple product the device is tightly integrated with iTunes, but movies from NetFlix or YouTube videos can also be accessed.
The Apple TV can also be connected with your home computer for streaming anything in your iTunes account. Music or even a photo slideshow can be played from your television set. Comes with its own remote, but can also be configured to work with your iPhone or iPad. With a price now under $100, this makes a nice gift.
Best Gifts for Men
Some men are harder to shop for than others. In addition to some of the electronic gifts listed above (which are great gifts for men) here are a few more Christmas gift ideas for men.
Star Wars: The Complete Saga
Just about every man loves Star Wars and now the complete collection is available in one box set. This Blu-ray edition contains all 6 episodes of the Star Wars saga along with many bonus features like deleted scenes and filming documentaries.
Be warned though, there are many angry one-star reviews from die-hard Star Wars fans against this collection. For the guy who loves Stars Wars but doesn’t go so far as dressing like up like a Wookie for the latest convention, this is still a nice gift idea.
The Fellowes PowerShred
Okay, a paper shredder isn’t the most exciting gift so not something you may want to give to your new boyfriend. Assuming you want to keep him.
But in the days of identity theft, a paper shredder is a great thing to have and yet not something people tend to buy for themselves. This is a nice, practical gift for maybe your Dad or the organized business person in your life.
The Brother DS600 Portable Scanner
Here is a neat little device that most of the men in your life don’t have but could certainly use. It is a document scanner, perfect for scanning papers, receipts and even business cards.
It is small enough to fit on the side of a desk or into a laptop bag for the business traveler. Digitizing records and receipts is a great way to get organized and a perfect gift for the professional.
Call of Duty: Black Ops II
If you have a gamer in your life, particularly an Xboxer, then you can’t go wrong with some type of Xbox gift. The only trouble comes in finding a gift that your gamer doesn’t already own.
Call of Duty: Black Ops II is the newest Xbox game to be released on November 13, 2012 so you have a shot of buying a game that isn’t already owned. Call of Duty is a very popular Xbox game series and will certainly be a very popular 2012 Christmas gift.
Casio Men’s G-Shock Classic Digital Watch
The Casio G-Shock watch is a bestselling men’s sports watch and comes in a few different versions. For the man in your life who is active, this is a great, affordable gift idea.
But even for the man who isn’t terribly active, this is still a nice, “manly-looking” watch at a good price. A nice gift idea for the guy who seems to have everything.
The GOgroove BlueSYNC Portable Speaker
This little speaker system is Bluetooth-enabled which means it can be used with a number of devices. Music can be played from a laptop, iPad, iPhone or Droid completely wireless.
And the small size makes this speaker extremely portable. A great gift idea for any guy that likes to listen to music wherever he goes.
Best Gifts for Women
Despite being a woman, I will admit that women can be difficult to buy for sometimes. I have tried to come up with a few popular items to cover the range of women out there. Just use your head – don’t buy the cake carrier for a woman who never cooks, okay?
Skagen Two-Tone Mesh Watch
This fashion watch by Skagen isn’t cheap and it isn’t expensive. It is a nice-looking, simple watch that almost any woman would like and at a great price.
It even comes in a box, all ready to be wrapped. A watch like this is a great gift idea for most of the women in your life, from girlfriend to mother.
Perfume for Women
Perfume is one of those stand-by gifts for women because almost every woman wears perfume. The only difficulty can be what kind of perfume to buy as women can be a bit picky about their fragrances.
If you are considering perfume as a gift I would suggest you go with some of the newer and more popular fragrances. A few to check out are Lovely by Sarah Jessica Parker, Paris Hilton, Wonderstruck, and Coach Poppy.
Polaroid PoGo Mobile Printer in Pink
Here is a unique gift idea for a woman. This mobile printer is for one-the-go photo printing from a camera or from most cell phones. These are not full-sized photo prints but 2 x 3 inch prints.
This is a cool gift idea for a teenager, college student or for the traveler who would enjoy printing photos while on the road. This printer comes in black in addition to pink, but what fun is that?
Progressive International Cake and Cupcake Carrier
This is a great mom gift, especially for moms of school-aged children. Having one of these carriers will make taking cupcakes to school for a birthday super easy.
But this is really a nice idea for any woman who bakes and leaves her house (abaking hermit may not find much value). This carrier holds up to 24 cupcakes and is collapsible for easy storage – what’s not to love?
A Laptop Bag
Since almost everyone has a laptop today, a pretty laptop bag is another gift idea. These bags are particularly nice for the working woman or the college student.
As a gift, I would opt for a pretty design. And if you want to take the gift one step further, check out a pink, wireless mouse and maybe a nice journal.
Scotch Thermal Laminator
Here is another great gift idea for a mom, crafter or even a gift for a teacher – a thermal laminator. Children’s artwork and paper-based awards can be laminated for long-term preservation. Teachers can find all kinds of uses in a classroom and at only about $20, this is a nice but cheap gift for many of the people on your list.
Best Gifts for Kids
For the hot toy gifts of the year be sure to check out the Hot Christmas Gifts 2011 list. In addition to the toys I listed there, here are a few more gift ideas for kids.
The Qwirkle Board Game
Board games are always a simple and easy gift for children. This year the game Qwirkle is popular and selling well for ages six and up.
The game is fairly straightforward and much like Scrabble but with colors and shapes. The simplicity of it makes it a great family game as even younger children can play. Yet the game is challenging enough for older kids and adults to enjoy.
Lego Alarm Clock
A Lego alarm clock is a cool and unique gift idea for younger children. Having a clock in the room can help a child learn how to tell time, but the design also makes the clock a fun decorative addition to a child’s room.
Star Wars is the most popular theme in the Lego alarm clock collection with a Darth Vader clock, a Yoda clock and many more. There are also a few basic Lego clocks and a few pink options for girls. If you are looking for a non-toy gift for a child, these clocks are definitely worth a look.
Snap Circuits Jr.
Snap Circuits are a fun, science toy for children 8 years of age and up. The kit consists of electronic parts and a project guide for building working systems. Kids learn how electricity works and are challenged by the do-it-yourself aspect of the kit.
These kits make a great gift for a boy in particular, especially any boy who shows an interest in the mechanical. These educational toys have been around for years but continue to be a hot seller every year at Christmas.
If you are looking for a gift idea other than a toy, then a watch is something to consider. Most children enjoy having a watch of their own and some of the Lego watches are pretty cool.
These watches have wristbands that look like a bunch of Legos and come in various characters designs or just plain. The most popular theme for this year seems to be Star Wars.
Cars 2 DVD
The latest kid’s movie is always a great buy for Christmas and this year we have the release of Cars 2 on DVD. I’ll be honest and say that I thought this Pixar movie was quite dull, but my kids still seemed to like it.
The DVD is being released at the beginning of November, just in time for Christmas. If you have a kid on your list who likes movies, particularly Pixar films, then this may make a good gift.
Don’t forget to start your holiday shopping early.
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