Practical Splurges: A Gift-Giving Guide

I’ve already told you all that I’m a huge fan of consumable, experience-based, and charitable gifts– they cut down on clutter, for sure! Still, I like to wrap other things, too. I also rather enjoy OPENING a few gifts come Christmas morning. It’s fun, right?


Some of my very, very favorite gifts– both to give and receive– fall in the category of “practical splurges.” These are gifts that are used for practical purposes, but are of a higher quality than the recipient would likely buy for him- or herself typically. Some are consumable, but some are not. Either way, there is something unbelievably luxurious about being able to use these items, guilt-free, throughout your daily routines:


  1. High-End Toiletries– I can never bring myself to spend more than ten dollars on face cream. I wouldn’t dream of buying the deodorant that matches my favorite perfume. But for gifts? Few things beat these small indulgences. I cherish and enjoy using them every day and I always remember the gifter.
  2. Cashmere Socks– These socks aren’t sold in jumbo packs and they aren’t likely to make anyone’s ultra-frugal list. However, they are cozy and soft and such a special treat for the feet! What a fun way to add luxury to someone’s every day life.
  3. Gourmet Spices– Most of my spices get snagged at Costco or Aldi and, really, they do the job. But, every now and again, it is pure joy to be able to reach for that fancy-pants bottle of vanilla or exotic spice blend.
  4. Quality Cookware– Those who love to cook and bake know it’s true: quality matters. A good skillet could last decades! Also, having the right tools to get the job done makes it so much more pleasant.
  5. Cozy Outerware– Brrrr… baby, it’s cold outside! A down vest, fleece-lined jeans, or a cloud-soft cashmere scarf might make braving the great outdoors just a little more pleasant for someone on your list. We all need outdoor gear, but it’s sometimes hard to pay the higher price tag when we’re buying for ourselves.
  6. Exceptional Coffee– I love coffee. Flat adore it. And, really, I’m not a brand snob. But there’s something SO blissfully indulgent about being able to brew up an exceptionally rich cup of java.
  7. Top-of-the-Line Athletic Gear– Got an athlete or exercise-enthusiast on your list? Well-made garments and equipment can make a sport so much more delightful. Just ask a runner who finally got “just the right” shoes. All the difference in the world!
  8. A Gift Card for Well-Made Underpinnings– Raise your hand if you love shelling out big bucks for a bra. No? Yeah, me neither. But I also know the Walmart $7.99 twin-packs aren’t doing MY twins any favors, if you know what I’m sayin’. It’s hard to pay a lot of money for something only two of you will ever get to see, but it’s worth it. A gift card to a quality store is a wonderful way to add luxury and comfort to every day.
  9. Really Good Chocolate– Do I need to say more here? Listen, I love a Hershey’s kiss as much as the next gal, but there’s something to be said for REALLY good chocolate… the kind we’re not likely to buy ourselves. (Try searching Chocolove products on that link… I’ll take one of each!)
  10. Beautiful Hair Things– Will an elastic hair band get your locks out of the way? Yes. Will it add joy to your day or make you feel special? Probably not. A beautiful clip, scarf, or barrette can do the trick for getting tresses under control, all while making you feel like a million bucks.


Knick-knacks and cutesy things aren’t really my style. What really gets me excited? Beautiful, luxurious, high-quality things that I can actually put to really good use.


(*You’ll only find ONE affiliate link up there– #9, if you’re curious– because Connecticut tax laws mean most affiliate programs won’t accept me. The good news is that you know for sure that I just really love these things since I’m eager to share them with absolutely no incentive! :) )

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2 comments to Practical Splurges: A Gift-Giving Guide

  • Oh heavens… #8… I told myself that I was going to reward myself for my long breastfeeding relationship with Grace and splurge on new bras when she stopped nursing. I was 6 weeks pregnant when we finally stopped. I didn’t buy the bras. Maybe I’ll finally make that shopping trip in another 1.5 years. :)

    • Sigh… I have bras that pre-date all THREE of my children. That can’t be good. It really is painful to shell out the money, though! I’ll try to remind you to go reward yourself in May of 2014. ;)

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