You've been busy. Apparently, very busy, because Christmas is nearly here, and you still need to buy gifts.
At this point, you're going to have to go to a store to be absolutely sure your gift will be under the tree on Christmas morning. Here are suggestions for great gifts you can pick up around town, either on your lunch break or on the way home.
Thanks to TableTop, celebrity geek Wil Wheaton's web series on the YouTube channel Geek & Sundry, board games are making a comeback. One popular game is The Settlers of Catan, a trading and building game with a fairytale theme, recommended for ages 12 and older. The best part? You don't have to know what game system the child has. You can find Catan and other board games at most retail stores, including Target and Walmart.
Most kids play video games, however, and they like Minecraft. Why not get them a gift based on the video game? Stop by Barnes & Noble for "Minecraft: The Complete Handbook Collection" or a few of these mini figures.
Another great wine gadget is the Corkcicle, which chills, aerates and pours your favorite wine without having to remove it. You can find Corkcicles at Sur la table, Target, Bed Bath & Beyond and other retailers.
Wine isn’t your only option. Many people love a nice cup of tea. Teavana at Perimeter Mall has a wide variety of teas, from peachberry jasmine sutra green tea to chocolate chai black tea. Pair your selection with one of Teavana’s beautiful tea sets, which come in a variety of styles and colors. You can also find tea kettles and teapots at Target and Walmart.
Gift cards can be purchased almost anywhere. If you don't want to just hand someone a card, though, you can build a gift around it. Throw a Netflix gift card, popcorn, candy and drinks in a popcorn box and wrap it up.
An iTunes gift card is good for music, books and games. Add a new iPhone case, which you most likely can get at the same store, and you have a great present.
For art lovers
Drop by the gift shop at the High Museum of Art for everything from books to socks.
The book "100 Essential Things You Didn't Know You Didn't Know About Math and the Arts" points out that math and art "have a strong and natural affinity―after all, math is the study of all patterns, and the world of the arts is rich with pattern." Also available are exhibition catalogs.
Maybe your gift recipients prefer to wear their art. Look for socks, scarves, ties and jewelry in a variety of styles. The museum shop is closed Monday, but open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday, and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Christmas Eve.
Absolutely last minute
If the next few days are just too busy for shopping, and you need a truly very-last-minute gift, consider an app. Yes, with your iPhone or iPad, you can gift an app. You can also send books and music through iTunes. Just excuse yourself from the room, find what you want to give, and, voila, you have a present.
With these ideas or a little imagination of your own, no one will know you waited until this week to start your shopping.
Need to return a gift? Use these tips from Clark Howard to avoid surprises:
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