What the Heck Do I Get…

11 12 2009

I finally started my holiday shopping, which stresses me out quite a lot.  I wonder if I’m spending too much, or not enough.  The hardest people to shop for, by the way, are fifteen-year-old boys.  (You both know who you are.)

I always poke around gift guides online, but they never quite fit the person whose gift I’m trying to find.  For example, my dad is not a typical dad.  He doesn’t have any interest in tools, or cars, or sports, or gadgetry.  He doesn’t wear cologne, or ties, and is super picky about wallets, slippers, and other things that make normal “Dad” gifts.  But nowhere can I find a gift guide called “gifts for the dad who would rather be reading comic books or going to a Pretenders concert than watching football.”

So I’m going to put together a series of targeted, useful gift guides for your holiday shopping pleasure.  Here’s the first…

Holiday Gift Guide #1:

Gifts for your friend who loves to hike and camp, just had a baby, and swears her “life won’t change that much.”

This list pretty much writes itself, because I do have friends who love to hike and camp and do so with infants and toddlers.  (Once they’re older than that, you can give them a Swiss Army Knife and a package of waterproof matches and tell them to fend for themselves.  Kidding!!!  Kidding.  Really.)

Baby Backpack.  There are these really functional, sleek-looking hiking backpacks that have the normal spots and pockets for your hiking needs…and a place for your baby in the middle!  I have friends who swear by the Kelty brand, but there are a lot of options out there.

Portable Baby Bed.  I actually bought one of these for some friends (though I’m not 100% sure it was this model).  If they’re reading, maybe they can chime in with a review.  I think they look sort of hysterical (it’s a little pod! for your baby!  to protect him…and keep him in one place…), but they’re certainly functional, blocking harmful sun, bugs, and acting as a small playpen all at once.

Baby Sunglasses.  Cause really, this baby’s future is so bright, she’s gonna need shades.

Baby Sunscreen.  While we’re blocking the rays, baby sunscreen is another important way to protect the tot from harm while out of doors.

Hiking Strollers.  Seriously, when I saw this particular model, I did a double take.  I live in a city, so I see those funky joggers’ strollers all the time.  My best friend lives in the mountains of Vermont, so she had a big rugged stroller good for making dust out of boulders and leaping over muddy terrain.  But this model seems to be for hiking, and cross-country skiing.  It has a “child cockpit.”  If I ever have a baby, I want one of these.  Make a note.

Babysitting.  If all else fails, grab some construction paper and glitter (or, if you aren’t that creative, get one here) and make up a certificate for a day of babysitting.  That way your friend can leave the little one in safe care and hit the trails on her own or with her significant other. 

You can find more ideas about hiking and camping with babies here.

Happy holidays!  More gift guides to come…and if there’s a specific category you’d like to see addressed, let me know in the comments!