How to Beat the Summer’s Almost Over Blues

How to Beat the Summer’s Almost Over Blues

Summer is not over yet, there’s still a few weeks left to lounge in your unicorn pool float or spend the day munching on nothing but ice cream and rosé. Enjoy every moment you can of these last few weeks, but know that the end is in sight. To ease the pain we all feel this time of year, we’ve come up with a few ways to beat the summer’s (almost) over blues. Plan a Staycation Vacations are an amazing end-of-summer tradition, but…

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The Art Of Japanese Gift Giving

The Art Of Japanese Gift Giving

I met my husband while teaching English in Japan many years ago. Last summer, we took our sons to Tokyo and Kyoto to see the country we’d fallen in love with. Before we’d even left Shinjuku Station, my boys were fascinated by the world’s greatest vending machines—and the mountains of beautifully wrapped treats and souvenirs on display at every train station and department store. The gorgeous boxes made even simple mochi treats seem like something special. The…

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Gift Ideas for a Long-Distance Relationship: So Close Yet So Far Away

Gift Ideas for a Long-Distance Relationship: So Close Yet So Far Away

Any couple who has tried it knows how challenging long-distance relationships can be, and sharing thoughtful presents is a good way to keep the spark alive. Some of my best gift ideas for a long-distance relationship occurred when I was in the military. It used to take a lot to keep my relationship going with my significant other, and I was constantly looking for clever ways to stay connected. I wanted to find a way to not…

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Summer Wedding Anniversary Gift Ideas

Summer Wedding Anniversary Gift Ideas

  It’s wedding season and for many of us, that also means it’s anniversary season. It’s time to celebrate the one you cherish most and show them how much you care, today and everyday. For many of us anniversaries can creep up, so plan ahead, set a yearly reminder in that calendar and make this time of year a time you focus on you and your special someone. From a once-in-a-lifetime hot air balloon ride to a personalized game with…

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10 Best Science Fiction Classics – An Anytime Gift Guide

10 Best Science Fiction Classics – An Anytime Gift Guide

Almost everyone loves a good book. Here at Elfster , books are some of our favorite gifts. So, without further ado, here is our guide to the top 10 classic science fiction novels of all time, suitable for giving year round. First, what qualifies a science fiction book to be considered among the “best?” Ideally it uses a great story and well-developed characters to explore concepts about, well, everything: society, race relations, religion, technological advancement, space, time, humanity’s place in space…

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Bday Gift Ideas For Your Best Friend: Make Her Birthday Special

Bday Gift Ideas For Your Best Friend: Make Her Birthday Special

I gave one of my greatest birthday gifts for my best friend when I was just a kid. On her 8th birthday, I got her a “best friends” necklace. You might remember the kind. It was actually two necklaces, connected by one heart, that you could split in half and share. To this day, we both still have our halves, even if they are a bit weathered from time. That’s the great thing about bday gift ideas for your best friend —even if what…

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How to Make Baby’s First Birthday Gift Registry

How to Make Baby’s First Birthday Gift Registry

Preparing for your baby’s first birthday party also creates another first for your baby: a first birthday gift registry. When you’re planning a first birthday party for your kid, I can’t recommend using an online registry highly enough. My first birthday party for my son went the way most first birthdays go; it wasn’t so much a party for my baby as it was a party about him. As a one-year-old, he had very little idea of what was going on—including…

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Celebrate Christmas in July with a Summer Gift Exchange

Celebrate Christmas in July with a Summer Gift Exchange

Christmas in July is the perfect excuse to plan a festive summer soiree and give guests all the holiday feels smack dab in the middle of the summer.  It’s also the perfect time to do a summer gift exchange since July is prime time for retailers to offer major deals on seasonal goodies. There are a few key elements you need to successfully pull off a Christmas in July gift exchange party. Planning A Christmas in July Party First off, you need some…

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The Best Fourth of July Gift Basket Ideas for a Patriotic Celebration

The Best Fourth of July Gift Basket Ideas for a Patriotic Celebration

If you’re looking for Fourth of July gift basket ideas, then your goal should be creating something patriotic, exciting, and useful. That’s what I focus on when I make favors for my annual Fourth of July barbecue to ensure my gift baskets will be a hit. I also look for items that are economical, as I’m buying a lot of baskets for a lot of people. Plus, Independence Day isn’t a time when you usually shell out…

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The History Of Father’s Day

The History Of Father’s Day

LiveScience.com tells us that one Sunday in May, 1909, Sonora Smart Dodd sat in a church in Spokane, Washington listening to a Mother’s Day sermon. She had never known a mother. Hers had died in childbirth, leaving her dad to raise the newborn Sonora and her five siblings by himself. On that day she decided that her father, William Jackson Smart, a Civil War Veteran, should have a day established to honor him. The next year Sonora petitioned the city to recognize…

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Must-Have Wedding Registry Items: Creating the Perfect Wedding Wish List

Must-Have Wedding Registry Items: Creating the Perfect Wedding Wish List

It’s easy to miss the must-have wedding registry items that you’ll need to build a cohesive home for you and your partner when you’re in the midst of wedding planning. After all, there’s a lot to keep track of! When I was first married, I didn’t realize quite how much stuff I’d need. It was a bit of a learning curve when I discovered that my new husband lived a bare bones existence while everything I had…

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Celebrity Book Club Hosts Book Exchange to Express Love of Reading

Celebrity Book Club Hosts Book Exchange to Express Love of Reading

Read any good books lately? As I stare at the stack of unread books that has accumulated on my bedside table, I’m overwhelmed by my options. Like many folks, my favorite indulgence is curling up with a really good book to soothe my mind, but let’s face it, with our busy lifestyles these days, we don’t have much time to spare. So when it comes to how to spend my “me” time, I need a little help converting that “to-read” pile into my “best…

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How to Host the Best Secret Santa Book Exchange

How to Host the Best Secret Santa Book Exchange

A circle of moms in my neighborhood once hosted a Secret Santa book exchange but with a unique twist. We were supposed to give our giftee a book that best described us, and the receiver was supposed to guess their giver’s identity based on the book. It was a lot of fun and a really great way to get to know everyone. We enjoyed the event so much that we decided to make it an annual event….

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The Top Father’s Day Gift Basket Ideas

The Top Father’s Day Gift Basket Ideas

My dad is practically impossible to buy for. It seems like he already has everything and either wants for nothing or wants something so specific I’d have to be a mind reader to guess it.   I know I’m not alone in this issue. After all, dads are notoriously hard to buy for. So, every year when Father’s Day rolls around, I find myself scouring the internet for gift basket ideas . There’s a method to my madness. I figure if I focus on…

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The History of Memorial Day

The History of Memorial Day

Memorial Day is an American holiday established to honor men and women who died while serving in the U.S. Military. It is observed on the last Monday in May. In 2018 it falls on May 28. The First Observances of Memorial Day More Americans died in the Civil War, which ended in the spring of 1865, than in any other conflict in U.S. history. The great number of fatalities led to the creation of the nation’s first national cemeteries. By…

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Baby Registry Checklist: Create a Comprehensive Wish List Online

Baby Registry Checklist: Create a Comprehensive Wish List Online

When you’re trying to plan for a new baby, I’ve found the best way to do it is to create a baby registry checklist. After all, there’s a lot to think about! While I was pregnant, I had a bit of trouble keeping everything I needed straight. Even though I created a pretty extensive wish list, one of my friends pointed out that I’d forgotten more than a few important necessities, like pacifiers and teething rings. Luckily,…

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Secret Santa Themes for Family Gift Exchanges: Getting Everyone Involved

Secret Santa Themes for Family Gift Exchanges: Getting Everyone Involved

“We need to dust! And wash the curtains. And can somebody please find the other air mattress?” Our house was in a flurry of activity because we had relatives coming to visit. Not just one or two people, either—we were hosting 12 people at our house for a family reunion. Getting the house ready seemed to take days, but my sister and I cleaned faster and more thoroughly than ever before, fueled on by our excitement at…

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The History of Mother’s Day

The History of Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day’s Beginnings Elfster celebrates giving and no one gives more than the sometimes under-appreciated awesome moms everywhere. What better way to celebrate than to look back on the history of Mother’s Day? Our modern American Mother’s Day had antecedents. The ancient Greeks and Romans held festivals honoring the mother goddesses Rhea and Cybele. The most direct ancestor of the modern Mother’s Day, however, is the early Christian festival called “Mothering Sunday. This holiday dates back centuries to pre-Reformation days in Great Britain…

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Create an Online Classroom Wish List: Gifts For Teachers

Create an Online Classroom Wish List: Gifts For Teachers

“You got how many totes?” I asked my best friend Rena, a fifth grade teacher. It was the end of the school year , and while she appreciated the generosity of her students and their families, it was a little overwhelming for her to receive so many gifts. A dozen tote bags, countless mugs, and enough Dunkin’ Donuts gift cards to caffeinate an army were definitely a demonstration of her students’ affections, but also the result of parents shopping for someone they…

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Mother’s Day Gifts for the Woman Who Has Everything

Mother’s Day Gifts for the Woman Who Has Everything

What do you get the mom who seems to want for nothing? I find myself pondering this question every year. My mom doesn’t quite have everything, but she certainly seems to think she does, and it’s almost impossible to get her to produce wish lists on her own volition for her birthday , Christmas, and, of course, Mother’s Day. As someone who loves to shop and give gifts, it can leave me in a bit of a tough spot. I…

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50 Amazing Groups Staying Connected Year Round On Elfster

50 Amazing Groups Staying Connected Year Round On Elfster

At Elfster , we think every day should be a celebration!  It goes without saying: “ ‘Tis always the season of giving!” And since we’re in the business of bringing people together through acts of generosity all year long, we’re sharing the stories of some of the many ways people of shared interests are using Elfster to stay connected. Here’s our list — we checked it twice — of how 50 Amazing groups are staying connected and the…

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Spring Gift Basket Ideas For Celebrating the Season

Spring Gift Basket Ideas For Celebrating the Season

Every year, to celebrate Spring, my mother used to have a Spring Fling party. She’d invite our relatives over for an early season afternoon barbeque and decorate the house in Spring colors like yellow, green, and baby blue. My mom also used to make Spring gift baskets as party favors. She put a lot of work into them, as everyone got a basket that was uniquely their own. A couple years ago, I decided to carry on…

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Unexpected Gifts | The Joy and Power Of Anytime Giving

Unexpected Gifts | The Joy and Power Of Anytime Giving

Flowers picked from a friend’s garden and left on your porch just because. A latte from your favorite coffee shop sitting on your desk when you walk in the office, for no reason at all. A package from your best friend who just couldn’t resist buying you the earrings inside. Nothing fills us with little moments of unexpected joy quite like a gift given for no particular reason, at no particular time. “We enjoy things more when…

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Eco-Friendly Gift Ideas for Celebrating Earth Day

Eco-Friendly Gift Ideas for Celebrating Earth Day

Finding eco-friendly gift ideas is a lot easier now that sustainability and environmental awareness have become so widespread. That’s something I noticed when I was choosing gifts for my friends for our annual Earth Day party . There were so many options available, from small and large companies alike. Still, it’s wise to be selective with the gift you choose. After all, many companies claim their products are safe for the earth, but sometimes it’s hard to tell if that’s…

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