Sunday, December 02, 2012

Under Ten

This year my family and I decided to start a new holiday gift-giving tradition. Instead of spending money on lots of presents, we're buying just one gift for each other that costs no more than $10.00. The rest of the $$$ we normally spend will be donated to folks in need. For 2012 we're giving to the victims of Hurricane Sandy in Rockaway, which was my Dad's childhood home.

You'd think this one $10 gift rule would make shopping difficult, but I love bargain hunting so I'm actually having a blast with it. I'm also finding there are a lot of cool gifts out there for under ten bucks, so I thought I'd share some intel by putting together a list of:

Ten Gifts You Can Buy for Ten Bucks or Less

Kathy Iogo's All You Need is Love . . . and a Cat box sign is a great gift for your favorite feline lover; at $5.95 from B& you'll have enough left over to buy a nice pack of kitty treats, too.

Sometimes you can find bargains even at pricey places like Levenger; they have this ruled ceramic pen/pencil cup for $10.00
which you can fill with something fun you make for your recipient (chocolate-dipped pretzel rods would look neat.)

Office Depot carries Lexar™ JumpDrive® TwistTurn USB 8G Flash Drives in a variety of colors for $9.99; to make it extra personal add some content on it for them, like family pics or some free stories from your favorite authors (I have a whole library of them available over there on the sidebar, not that I'm hinting.)

Target is another site where you can shop by price; they have lots of gift ideas for less than ten bucks including this cute set of Paul Frank Lip Smackers that inlcudes a neat little makeup bag for $9.99.

Writer's Bloc is the place I shop for interesting gifts for writers; they have a bunch of items for less than $10.00 like this Writersblok Woodpecker Notebook that looks like it's covered with white birch bark; at $8.55 you can add an inexpensive pen and still stay under ten bucks.

Pier 1 has 634 gifts under $10.00 on their website, including this cute Mini Desk Supply set for $4.78 (saves you enough to splurge on an inexpensive 2013 calendar, like this one from Office Depot for $4.99) and these adorable Chubby Cat Salt & Pepper shakers for $8.00.

Add some pics to this Vintage Camera Photo Album and you've got two gifts in one; $9.95 from B&

These Sakura Gelly Roll StarDust gel pens produce a lovely, sparkling ink, and for $1.00 each from Writer's Bloc you can buy a nice set of them and pair them with an inexpensive journal or sketchbook.

The Top Secret Lock & Key Diary is great for teens or anyone who wants to journal securely; $9.95 from B&

Give your favorite scribe this Writers Block memo pad; $10.00 from, where else, Writer's Bloc.

Finally, a great novel is always a welcome gift, and most paperbacks cost under $10.00. I happen to have one coming out on Tuesday that is $7.99 from B& or at most bookstores.


  1. Hi, it is refreshing to meet people who do this. We do the same. I only buy something that we really need and we donate money to local charities.

  2. Wow! so many things we can add just for 10 bucks, its surprising. You have given a cool list of gifts to give. Thank you.

  3. Fran K4:57 AM

    Its an excellent idea. I find that the majority of people don't really appreciate what Christmas is about and get caught up in the commercial hype, forgetting that just seeing your loved ones on Christmas day is enough for most of us. Last year I asked a shop assistant why I couldn't find any cards with the baby Jesus on and she replied "Why? What's he got to do with it?" Needless to say I didn't buy my cards from there.

    I like this idea as it embodies the spirit of Christmas.

  4. Shiloh8:25 AM

    That's a lovely idea... :)

  5. I loved gel pens so much as a teen.


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