[Photo – CC Attribution Share Alike – rkelland]
Today I am happy to announce a blog swap, with Kim from Eyes on the Dollar. I am posting over at her site – come check it out!
With every holiday season, there is always someone on your list that tests your gift giving skills. You know the type; they may already have everything, don’t have any hobbies you understand, and never seem really excited about gifts of any sort. I don’t know about you, but when I give a gift, I like the recipient to be happy and impressed with the thought I’ve put into it. Being in the health care industry, I’ve seen gifts of health care services and products make great presents. These are a few of the ones that tend to work well.
Whether they admit it or not, most people like a good pair of sunglasses. My father-in-law is kind of a grumpy gift recipient, but I’ve never seen him more excited than when we gave him a nice pair of polarized sunglasses. He would never spend money on something like that for himself, but as a fisherman, they really make a difference. You can find sunglasses in just about every style and price range as well.
Contact lenses can be a life changing gift for teenagers. Obviously, you can’t go buy a box without a prescription, but you can arrange with the recipient’s eye doctor to provide for contact lens training and products. If the patient has been in within the last year, they won’t need a new exam, and this can be a pretty affordable gift. Teens aren’t the only ones who may appreciate this gift. A couple of years ago, we actually had a lady who wanted to buy contacts for her friend. She knew her friend was going through some hard times and wasn’t able to afford them that year. If you are used to wearing contacts and suddenly are forced to wear glasses, it is a big hit to your self esteem. I’ve probably never seen a happier gift recipient than the lady’s friend.
Okay, this is certainly not an eye doctor service. I would have probably never thought of giving any sort of gift that involved a dentist unless I didn’t like the person, but one of my employees received a gift certificate for a LASER teeth whitening treatment from her mom. Again, this was something she would have never bought for herself, but she was giddy with the thought of having white, bright teeth. You don’t want to insult anyone, but if you know they don’t like the look of their smile, this makes a great, unique gift.
Instead of candy or socks, there are a variety of smaller gifts that you can give to make you stand out as a unique gifter. If you have an adult on your list that uses store bought readers and doesn’t require a prescription, there are tons of cute styles that are often priced below $10. If you are unsure what strength to buy, a good rule of thumb is that from ages 40-50, +1.25 or +1.50 is a good power. From ages 50-60, +1.75 or +2.00 tends to work, and for over 60 years of age, +2.25 or +2.50 usually gets the job done.
Microfiber glasses cleaning cloths make great affordable gifts for the person who always has dirty glasses or sunglasses and cleans them with a shirt tail or paper towels. Remember that paper towels are made from wood and can scratch lenses. Microfiber works much better and is machine washable. You can even buy souvenir cloths. In our area, a popular one has the Telluride ski map as a pattern and is about the size of a large dish towel. They also work great if your windshield gets filmy on the inside.
Finally, it might not be very creative, but if you know that someone needs an eye exam or glasses, you can always give a gift certificate to help with their needs. I’d rather receive something boring that I will use instead of another cookie jar or tin of popcorn that will most likely get regifted!
If you think outside the box, sometimes you can find exciting gifts in the strangest of places. The next time you visit your eye doctor or dentist, you might consider looking around to find the next great present.
Have you ever given a gift from the doctor’s office?
This is a guest post from Kim at Eyes on the Dollar. Kim has been a private practice optometrist for almost 13 years. She also blogs about her journey toward achieving 20/20 financial vision. You can follow her on Twitter @Eyesonthedollar.