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Nine No-Shop Gifts for the Body, Mind and Spirit

Easy homemade gift ideas that will be meaningful for family and friends this holiday season.

11/30/2018  |  By Adventist Health System

Sometimes the most memorable gifts come from the heart, not the store.

If you still have a few special people on your “nice” list but no more time to shop, here are some simple, thoughtful gifts designed to bring joy, wellness and TLC to your loved ones’ lives. The best part? They don’t cost a thing.


Handcrafted Healthy Recipe Book. Have you mastered the art of healthy cooking? Help someone else do the same by giving the gift of your kitchen smarts. Compile your family’s favorites for a year’s worth of nutritious recipes. Who knows — it might even inspire you to start that blog or write that cookbook.

Treat Them to a Healthy Lunch. When we’re in a rush, it’s easy to fall into unhealthy eating habits. This gift has dual benefits: it’ll make a friend’s day, and encourage you both to make lunch more nutritious. Create a festive voucher, card or coupon to meet up and treat someone to a healthy homemade meal.

Home-Cooked Healthy Snacks. Instead of giving sugary cookies or calorie-laden fudge, help your loved ones start the new year on a healthier note. Whip up some of your go-to healthy snacks, from granola to trail mix to zesty spiced nuts. Bundle them in cute jars, glossy gift paper, cardboard takeout-style boxes or treat bags tied with ribbon.

Year-Round Walking/Workout Buddy. Studies show that having a dedicated workout buddy is an excellent motivator. Volunteer to be a friend’s fitness partner, support system and cheerleader — an excellent way to encourage someone looking to be more active in the new year. And it’ll keep you moving, too.


DIY Inspirational Quote Book. The perfect inspirational quote has the power to brighten your day and change your perspective. This gift is ideal for loved ones going through a rough patch, or anyone who could use a little lift. Scour your Pinterest boards, select a few meaningful Bible verses, famous quotes or write your own. Print and bind them with ribbon, or get crafty with your own designs.

Coupon for a Friend/Date Night. If you find yourself saying “we should get together” more often than actually getting together with friends, this one’s for you. Present someone special with a physical coupon that he or she can “cash in” for a friends’ night out. Or, give one to your spouse for a much-needed date night that you plan.

Free Babysitting Vouchers. Here’s a sure-fire way to make a mom’s day. Better than any toy is the gift of free babysitting, courtesy of you. It’ll give parents a well-deserved breather, and you’ll get a great excuse to relax, play and be one of the kids.


Homemade Devotional-a-Day Calendar. So many families are looking for ways to build their faith and incorporate scripture into their daily lives. Build a collection of your favorite prompts and help someone close to you strengthen their connection with God.

Pass on Your Favorite Inspirational Book. Are you one of those people who can’t stop telling friends about your latest read? If so, brighten someone’s day by passing on your favorites, along with a thoughtful note on the inside cover.