A very Covid Christmas
It’s the first week of November and it’s still far from clear what kind of Christmas we’ll be having here in the UK. In common with many other recently cancelled religious festivals, we might have to resign ourselves to much more muted celebrations this year. One thing’s for certain though, Christmas gifts still need to be bought! Whether you’re shopping for clients, colleagues or family and friends, we have found the perfect selection of gifts to reflect the times we live in!
Food & Drink
Food and drink is always a big part of Christmas, but this year it may become even more important as many people may be forced to cook their own Christmas dinner for the first time, instead of eating out or relying on Auntie Sue! Clients and colleagues alike will appreciate food hampers containing all those little bits that you only buy for Christmas (and probably don’t know you need until you start cooking!) Friends and family will also appreciate food gifts that take the hassle out of the big day. If you want to give a personal touch, why not prepare that dish that you know they like to eat at your house, and pop it round – lockdown rules permitting of course! My mum makes a full size trifle every year even though I am the only one out of 14 family members who actually eats it… (In case you’re disgusted by that, I obviously don’t eat it all in one go. I save the second half for Boxing Day)
Homeware & Lifestyle
With all of us spending considerably more time at home, whether working or not, gifts for the home are likely to be really well appreciated this year. For home-working colleagues, stationery and home office gifts will go down well, or maybe even a blanket or some slipper socks to keep their bottom-half warm on Zoom! Clients may appreciate home luxury gifts such as candles, reed diffusers or vases – but make sure these are in neutral colours so that they will tone with any interior colour scheme. You’ll know a lot more about your friends and family, so you’ll be able to choose something suitable for their home and lifestyle, from cookware to throws to tableware. If you really want to splash out, patio heaters are apparently selling like hotcakes as people repurpose outdoor spaces to take advantage of the rule of 6. Be aware though that these really are for life not just for Christmas, in that they are incredibly bad for the environment! This year’s Christmas gift might be next year’s polar icecap disaster…
Wellbeing & Hobbies
The slower pace of life in the pandemic, coupled with a lack of human connection, has led to lots of us revaluating our lifestyle, and in particular its impact on our mental health. A really nice touch for your colleagues might be to get them a subscription to a wellbeing service like Headspace, or the Mind charity’s Pause Box. This will show that you care about them as people as well as workers, and that you want them to take care of themselves.
Some people have found they have lots of time on their hands and may be looking to fill it with healthier habits than drinking and Netflix. Crafting or gardening gifts would be really appreciated by friends and family with time to fill – you can get everything from art and pottery kits, to online music lessons, cookery boxes, outdoor and indoor planting kits, and even grow your own vineyard kits for those who really don’t want to give up their wine!
For your clients, a subscription box gift is a really nice idea. You can get gift vouchers for individual boxes, or subscriptions for several months, and what’s nice about these is that you know if the person likes it they are going to resubscribe, so you’re doing a small business owner a favour too! There are all kinds of subscription boxes to choose from with books, stationery, beauty products, food and drink being the most popular choices. I get very excited when my Craft Gin Club box packed with gin, tonics, cocktail kits, and nibbles arrives every month – so I would definitely recommend that to any of you gin lovers! Heck, you can even use my discount code for a whopping £16 off your first box: https://prz.io/xolELLT0
Fitness and Exercise
Regular readers of this blog will know that I don’t really practise what I preach when it comes to exercise (although that Gin Club box is really heavy so moving that counts as weight training, right?) HOWEVER, many people are struggling with limited access to gyms and other fitness facilities, so if your clients, colleagues or friends are particularly sporty then they will appreciate some home workout equipment, or a subscription to an online exercise class or personal training programme. As for me, if you can find a sport that incorporates gin and trifle, let me know…
There is no arguing against the fact that what we’ve all really missed this year is the ability to connect with friends and family in a ‘normal’ way. Gifts which help to bridge the social distancing gap will be so well received, whether it’s a tablet for an elderly relative to video call their grandchildren on, a photobook for a friend with images of the two of you sharing happy times, or even just a hand written letter full of memories and laughter. You might even send a special friend an IOU for one video call or outdoor coffee a week! There are no rules, just do whatever you can to reconnect with your loved ones over the festive period and beyond.
Remember, if you’re struggling yourself this festive season, whether it’s Covid worries, business concerns, or even just personal struggles, we are always here to help! Despite having a rep for being boring, number-loving machines, your accountants are (relatively) normal people just like you, so don’t be afraid to pick up the phone for a chat if you need to. And obviously if you want to buy your accountant a Christmas present, they would like a bottle of gin, which can be addressed to me….