2009-12-03 / Features

Useful Gifts For Everyone On Your List

Tired of the same old, same old when it comes to buying holiday gifts? Not looking forward to playing the usual retail game – running out to shop, waiting in long lines for questionable discounts on generic items, then resorting to purchasing useless gifts out of sheer panic and lack of time?

Help is here. Below are some thoughtful, useful and unique gift ideas for everyone on your list who loves the outdoors – including those hardest-to-buy-for folks. The best part is, all of these gifts are available online, so they can be wrapped and mailed directly to you so that you can spend your time stress free, sipping eggnog by the fire.

For the fitness-conscious

A heart rate monitor might not be the first item to come to mind for a holiday gift, but here’s why it would make a great one: it helps its user reap maximum benefits from exercise all year long. Basic heart rate monitors simply measure and display the user’s heart rate; more advanced ones signal when the user is exercising within her target heart rate zone, which gives her the knowledge necessary for a more controlled and optimized work out, and ultimately helps improve her overall fitness level. In addition to heart rate and zone training alarms, the Tech4o Women’s Heartbeat watch with heart rate monitor boasts calorie and fat burn as well as a female-specific size and fit. It has an easy-to-read angled face and a coded transmission between the comfortcontoured chest strap and wristwatch display so there is no “cross talk” interference when used at the gym. If you’re looking for a gift for someone who is serious about their workout performance, the Women’s Heartbeat is a great find at $89.99, www.tech4o.com. Find out more at: www.facebook.com/pages/Tech4o/1 68927710349.

For little ones (and their parents whom you adore and don't want to make crazy)

Looking to put an end to some of the beeping, buzzing and/or quasi-violent electronic games this year? Try something simpler and different this holiday, like a gift that actually encourages kids to get outside and have fun the old-fashioned way. Eureka! Kidsized sleeping bags are perfect for little campers, but they’re also great for Friday night slumber parties. They are available in gender specific colors with names like “Grasshopper” and “Lightning Bug” that will appeal to little ones; the girls will especially love the fabulous pink and purple colors of the Lightning Bug. Sells for $39.99 at www.eurekatents.com.

For the gadget guru

The Handheld Outdoor Data Center is a convenient, travelsized weather station that features large easy-press buttons and an ergonomic design to fit comfortably in hand. It features an altimeter, a barometer, a thermometer, a digital compass, the time and date, a stopwatch and two alarms. Batteries are included, so recipients can use it right away. It’s a great thing to have in a briefcase, for a hike or to keep in the car for road trips. The data center sells for $99.99 at www.tech4o.com.

For the Scout or outdoorsman

A very simple, but very practical gift for the outdoorsman is the tried and true compass. Silva USA, makers of compasses since 1946, offers an assortment of compasses with varying feature sets at multiple price points, but the most popular is its legendary Ranger compass. Due to its superior accuracy, adjustable declination and split sighting mirror, the Ranger is known to be the one and only choice for many a search and rescue team. The Ranger sells for $54.99 at www.silvausa.com.

Stocking stuffers for the whole family

Never rule out simple and practical tools as unique gift ideas. Case in point: compact flashlights. The NiteGuide series from Eureka offers versatile flashlights that with one twist convert from a focused square beam of light, ideal for seeing great distances, to an area-encompassing flood for more general night-time use. These lights are super convenient, sized perfectly for a purse or glove compartment, and make great stocking stuffers, offering unbeatable brightness for the price. Prices start at $55.99 at www.eurekatents.com.

For that impossible-to-buy-for person

Lastly, for the person who leaves you completely stumped each year, here’s the ultimate gift: a donation on that person’s behalf to World Vision, a humanitarian organization (and recipient of Charity Navigator’s highest fourstar rating). World Vision’s mission is to work with children, families, and their communities to tackle poverty and injustice worldwide, and their charitable gift offerings range from providing clean water to fruit trees and warm clothing to the needy worldwide. They also offer computer printable cards, so your recipient will know a gift was given in their name and to which specific cause. Log on to www.worldvision.org.

Return to top