iStock_000014983738MediumHoliday season is officially underway, which means the hunt for the perfect present has begun. Shopping for presents can be stressful because of the large effort in trying to find the right gift for someone.

Here is a list of do's and don'ts for gift giving and receiving this holiday season.

Research: Do research on the person whom you are buying for. Find out their types of interests and what they enjoy. Even when buying a gift card it is important to make sure that you purchase a gift card from a store the person frequents.

Be Thoughtful: It's the thought that counts. Not everyone has a large budget and the ability to buy expensive presents. Keep in mind that no gift is too small.  Providing a thoughtful gift carries the most weight. When thinking about what to gift someone reflect on previous experiences and conversations with that person for ideas.

Don't Leave the Price Tag On: Always remember to take the price tag off. It is neither kosher nor important for a person to know how much you spent on their present. Include a gift receipt in case someone chooses to return or exchange the item.

Be Thankful: Always send a hand written thank you note for any gift you receive. Even if you have no use for a gift, it is important that you thank the person for their time and consideration. When Holiday Gift Givingsomeone takes the time to buy you a gift then you should take the time to show your appreciation.

Give Your Time:  A great gifting idea is donating your time to help someone. This is a personal gift that could mean a lot.  Run errands, babysit for the day or take a person to their doctors appointment.

Be Crafty:  This season try making a gift for someone. If you have a hobby such as knitting or floral arrangements, utilize those skills for creating a present for a person. There is nothing more special than a hand made or thoughtful gift.

Don't Gift Alcohol: Alcohol used to be one of the most common gifts given. Today, substance abuse problems are prevalent. Be careful when gifting alcohol, make sure you know the person and are not adding to a problem.

Happy Holidays!

Christmas Shopping During these days of glad tidings and good cheer, we still tend to focus on our busyness of shopping and entertaining a bit more than positive interactions with others.  I propose breaking up the monotony with random compliments!  How?  It’s so easy and fits right into your daily activities.  Try these.

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Have you ever passed someone on the street or in a mall and thought how great she looks, what cute shoes, or where did she get that fabulous bag?  Next time, tell her.  Or him.  The pass-by is most often related to someone’s appearance, but that’s just fine.  We all want to know that we are attractive in some way.   So as you pass by someone, simply call out, “Cute shoes!” and keep walking.  You may or may not see her reaction, but I guarantee the odds of making her day are in your favor.

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When you are shopping for and ordering holiday gifts, you are bound to cross paths with a sales or customer service person who goes above and beyond to make you happy.  Take a second to ask his name and spread the word about his great work.  Tell his supervisor, and post it on social media.  You not only promote the business, you promote the individual.  A very good deed!

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As you leave a holiday gathering and thank your host, throw in a sincere compliment.  Hosting is rarely a small job so telling her how amazing the homemade cheese straws were will make her feel that all her preparation time was worth it.  Use the Warm Fuzzy any time you are in direct contact with someone you know.  The sincerity and authenticity of your compliments will warm hearts for days to come.

How do you offer compliments?  Have you received one in the past that was so wonderful you still remember it?  Tell us about it here.