Making Dad Happy
If you have used up all your great gift ideas for Christmas and Dad's birthday, and you're scratching your head about Father's Day gift ideas, don't worry. I've got you covered.
This is your guide to creating the best Father's Day gift basket. Not only can you assemble a gift basket that suits your father's interests and tastes, you can make one that suits your budget. Have your own great ideas for what to give Dad for Father's Day? Leave a comment at the end!
Father's Day Gift #1
If the father in your life - whether your dad, grandfather, uncle, or husband - loves to hit the course, he'll appreciate a golf theme gift basket for his special day.
Some great additions include: sunscreen, a visor or hat, a rule book, electronic score counter, golf ball line marker alignment tool, suction cup for putter (so he doesn't have to bend over as much), tees, golf balls, range finder, Swiss Army golf tool, water bottle, gloves, practice net, and soft-sided drink cooler. You could even put your gift items into the cooler for a two-in-one.
Father's Day Gift #2
Summertime means time for grilling. If Dad is a BBQ master, indulge him with a fully-loaded, mouth-watering barbeque gift basket. Include: barbeque sauce (store bought or homemade), meat brush, grill scraper, mitts, tongs, skewers, spatula, BBQ fork, meat rubs, meat thermometer, apron, and aluminum foil.
You can assemble this into a heavy-duty basket for Dad to store all his barbeque accessories, a picnic basket, or a cooler (because grilling is thirsty work!). It'll the perfect gift for him!
Father's Day Gift #3
Whether Dad loves to watch the big game or the big screen, this sports gift basket will satisfy his appetite for entertainment. You will help him enjoy his TV time much more with: crunchy munchies, including pretzels, popcorn, chips, and nuts, drinks (soda, beer, or wine are all great choices), movie theater candy, baked goods, including cookies and brownies, a team t-shirt or jersey for sports fans, or a gift certificate for a movie rental or DVD for film buffs.
For the Beer Buff, or Wine Lover
Build a gift basket around Dad's beverage of choice. A beer-themed basket, for instance, could include a variety of micro-brews or even international varieties. Shop around your local liquor store - you might be surprised at the incredible variety.
If Dad prefers wine, include red and/or white for a wine gift basket. Since wine is typically more expensive, limit it to a bottle or two. You can fill in both the beer and wine baskets with treats including pretzels, chips, pita chips, nuts, gourmet popcorn, and baked goods.
As a variation, you could also build a basket containing all the fixings for Dad's favorite mixed drink, whether it's a martini, a whiskey sour, or an Old Fashioned.
For the - I don't know!
Father's Day Gift #5
What if the father in your life has everything he needs for his hobby, doesn't like grilling, and doesn't drink often? What if you don't have a big budget, or any budget! Not to worry; you can make Dad a basket of gourmet treats with staples you have in your kitchen.
You can whip up delicious decorated cookies, brownies, cupcakes, candies, and other goodies using very simple ingredients. The results will be fantastic, and Dad will appreciate the effort and thought you put into it.
This Father's Day, make the special dad in your life a meaningful, customized gift basket that will show him how much you care. And maybe he'll share those baked goods with you!
If you know someone that enjoys golf, you probably know there is an endless variety of clubs, gadgets, gifts, etc. that you can buy for the sport. When my husband first starting golfing, he got golf themed gifts from me and many other people for Christmas or his birthday and even as a Father's Day gift.
Some of them turned out to be really useful and others found their way into the back of the closet or garage to gather dust. I asked him to tell me which ones were his favorites from the last 10 years of golf gift baskets and gifts...
Below you'll find the list of our best gift ideas!
When my husband first started golfing, the first thing I got for him was a package of 10 group golf lessons. He has told me repeatedly that it's one of the best gifts I ever gave him. Getting the lessons when he was still learning was important, because it allowed him to learn the proper techniques, before too many bad habits were permanently ingrained. Lessons can be helpful at any point, but the longer they've been playing, the harder it will be for them to break old habits. You can usually get a discount when you buy a package of lessons, and group lessons are significantly cheaper than individual lessons.
My husband told me the group lessons were actually better because there were other people to watch and it was easier to see examples, both good and bad, of the techniques the instructor was trying to explain. He also highly recommends taking lessons that include some kind of video. The video really shows things that you can't see yourself while you are swinging, and helped him tremendously.
Contact the local golf courses in your area to find out what kinds of lessons they offer and pricing. There are also "resort" style lessons at golf schools in meccas like California (speaking of which, check out these awesome California wine gifts), the Carolinas, and Florida. These typically involve several consecutive days of teaching, combined with rounds of golf, gourmet food gifts, lodging, etc. Some even cater to couples, either with them both taking lessons, or with the spouse being treated to massages, games of tennis, shopping, and more. Golf school was way out of my budget, but my husband assures me it would be a fabulous once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Instructional Golf Videos
Golf Books & Magazines
There are some things you need to learn from a teacher firsthand, but others you can learn about by reading and trying them out for yourself. I looked at what was on my husband's bookshelf to see which books and magazines he owned and asked him about his favorites.
Golf Magazine - This is a monthly magazine that is filled with all things golf. It includes the latest information about the professionals on tour, news about new golf courses, the latest in equipment, and lots of tips from top teachers and professionals. The tips can be helpful because it may include things like strategy and other things to consider that don't necessarily have anything to do with the golf swing itself, but can have a big impact on your score.
Dave Pelz's Short Game Bible - This remains my husband's favorite golf book, and many of his friends now own it too based on his recommendation after playing a round or two of golf together. Dave is a former engineer that spent countless hours recording statistics on the most successful ways to lower your score while pitching and chipping. He then explains in great detail how to properly execute these shots. I'm told that with some practice, it actually works very well.
Dave Pelz's Putting Bible - Another book by the same short-game author guru, this one focuses only on putting. It includes everything from how to read greens to developing a repeatable swing, and even getting into a "routine." I was shocked to see it is almost 400 pages long, but my husband assures me that it is all useful information.
John Redman's Essentials of the Golf Swing - This is his favorite book for reading about the fundamentals of swinging a golf club. Apparently there are several schools of thought on the proper technique, but this one made the most sense to him and also worked the best, which of course means he's a big fan.
The Golfer's Book of Wisdom - Dr. Criswell Freeman - This is a little book of quotes my husband received as part of a golf gift basket that he got one year as his birthday gift from a friend. There are quotes from famous people that have played golf through the last hundred years, and includes everything from humorous lines ("I know I'm getting better at golf because I'm hitting fewer spectators" - Gerald Ford) to observations on life ("The most rewarding things you do in life are often the ones that look like they can't be done" - Arnold Palmer).
Recommended Golf Books & Magazines at Amazon
Golf Clubs as a Gift!
I put this one in here because a new golf club or set of clubs can be the perfect gift for him, but you have to be very careful to make sure you know exactly what your golfer wants before making such a big purchase. It isn't a simple as just going to the local golf shop and saying "I'd like to buy a putter please." Golf clubs are big business, and there are not only many different brands, but different club lengths, materials, sizes, designs, etc. Normally irons are sold in sets, but all the other clubs can be purchased individually.
The club my husband likes the best is the one he had "fitted" by going to the local golf course one day when they were having a demo from one of the big manufacturers. They had someone from the company there with every conceivable combination of shafts, sizes, lofts, etc. He hit several different configurations, with the pro watching and making recommendations. The one he ended up buying was not what he would have picked had he not tried them all, and it's turned out to be a great choice.
If your golfer is just starting out, your best bet is to find a used set of beginner clubs. The clubs can be very expensive and if they continue to play and enjoy the game, they'll want to buy new clubs later on once they've learned more about their likes and abilities.
Golf Clubs at Amazon
Money Saving Tip
The big manufacturers normally come out with new designs every year. You can get last year's designs at huge discounts (usually 50% off) if you're willing to wait, or are okay with last year's design. Check out eBay for great deals on new and used clubs.
Golf Accessories & Golf Theme Gifts
There are no shortage of golf themed gifts and accessories on the market. These can be anything from actual golf products, like balls, tees, bags, head covers, etc., to actual golf theme items like picture frame favors, can koozies, pens, etc. The best golf themed gift I ever got for my husband was a golf ball display case. Most mount on the wall and have a glass front to proudly display the balls from memorable occasion. His is more empty than he would like, but he does have a few for his first birdie, longest drive in a tournament, plus a few from famous resort courses he's played or visited. He's still waiting for his first hole-in-one so he can put that ball in there!
His other favorite accessory is a hard-sided travel case with a sturdy leather luggage tag attached. Sometimes when we travel he likes to bring along his clubs to play, and the hard-sided travel case survives the airplane baggage handlers and everything arrives in one piece. He tells me it's far more enjoyable playing with his own clubs than having to rent them at the local course. So if you know a golfer that also plays while traveling, the hard sided case is a perfect golf gift!
Golf Gifts at Amazon
Funny Golf Bloopers
They say the way to a man's heart is through his stomach so why not give a golf themed gift that you can enjoy bite by bite.
It comes filled with all the things the golfer in your life will enjoy including Titleist golf balls (3 packs of 3), snacks such as cheese, nuts, crackers and more, plus the awesome insulated golf cooler that will come in handy while golfing! They can use it for water, lunch, snacks, or maybe even a beer or two.
You can also find cookie gifts that are arranged on sticks with the same fun golf theme. They are great for birthdays, Father's Day, or just because!
Throw An Awesome Train Themed Baby Shower
All aboard! Celebrate the soon arrival of the new little bouncing baby boy with a choo choo train themed baby shower. This fun-filled post contains ideas for train-themed party food, invitations, decorations, baby shower gifts and more. So grab your ticket and hop aboard for one of the best baby showers you've ever planned (or attended)!
If you've hosted a train baby shower and have some ideas to share, please feel free to add them to the comments section at the bottom of this post.
Train Baby Shower Invitations
When it comes to invitations, you have several options depending on your budget and schedule. If you have a good sized budget and want custom invitations that are printed especially for your shower with all of the details, you can find train-themed invites at many online shops. The train baby shower invitations shown in the photo are available at on our baby page!
The second option is to buy fill-in invitations that have a train on the front and blanks on the inside where you must hand-write all of the shower details such as the RSVP info, the name, date, location, time, etc. These invitations are usually purchased in conjunction with matching tableware or other party supplies. They are much more affordable than custom invitations, but beware of hand cramping if you have lots of people coming to the shower.
If you'd like to use your creativity, why not make your own baby shower invitations? I found this adorable sample along with instructions at Make Your Own Invitations.
The other option is to create some train-themed invites on your computer or craft them from construction paper and scrap booking supplies.
Here are some sample verses:
All aboard... to celebrate [Mom-to-be's name]'s Baby Shower!
Inside the card:
[Mom-to-be's name]'s Station
Please meet at Track # (street address)
RSVP: To Station Master [Hostess' First Name] @ [phone number]
All Aboard! [Mom-to-be's name]'s little one is on the way... it's time to help her get ready for the big day!
Chug, Chug, Choo, Choo...
Time for [mom-to-be's name]'s baby shower and we've invited you!
Train Themed Shower Decorations
Welcome your party guests to the station in style by using these fantastic decorating ideas! One of the first things you need to decide on is the color scheme for the party. If you decide to go with baby blue and white tableware like that shown in the photo, then obviously you should decorate with blue and white streamers, balloons and other accessories. However you can also go with a primary color scheme that is red, blue, yellow and black. Many party stores sell train tabletop items such as plates, napkins, beverage cups and more with trains in those colors.
For a creative entrance to the party, use some sidewalk chalk to draw train tracks up to the front door where you have a sign that reads [mom-to-be's name]'s Baby Shower Station. You can even buy a professionally printed personalized baby shower banner that has a train theme to hang above the door.
Be sure to have a pair of overalls, denim conductor cap, a whistle and a red bandana for Mom to wear... she is the conductor after all!
Buy, borrow or use your own little toy train set to place on the gift or buffet table. And consider purchasing or making a boy baby diaper cake to sit front and center on the table. The great thing about diaper cakes is that they act as both the centerpiece and the shower gift for baby and mom.
Train Theme Food Ideas
Add the choo choo train theme to your buffet table in these clever ways! Use your own toy train or borrow one from a friend if possible to lay tracks all around the table and then place a train on the tracks. If you can't find a toy train with tracks, use a simple white plastic table cloth and either paint or draw an oval train track with black paint around the outside edge of the tablecloth.
For the party snacks, you can craft some small trains yourself out of cardboard and paint them to look like the real thing. Add plastic tubes or straws for the axles and use big buttons or jar lids for the wheels. Fill them with snacks for a fun look.
Another fun idea is to create a sandwich train. As described above, use a white tablecloth that has black tracks painted on it. Then make some flatbed train cars where you can lay sandwiches. Place the train cars/sandwiches around the track. I recommend using an actual toy train engine at the front of the line to make it a bit more realistic looking. If you'd rather have the entire thing be edible, you can use celery or carrots for the train tracks and lay the sandwiches on top. Then use ritz bitz sandwiches, chocolate covered oreo cookies or even banana slices to make the train wheels. Get more great sandwich train ideas here.
You can use train cookie cutters to make just about any food into a train shape. It works great for sugar cookies, finger sandwiches, jello jigglers, and cheese slices. You can also create a fruit train by cutting the large chunks of watermelon into rectangles and then using a melon baller to create wheels that are held in place with toothpicks.
For the punch, try to make a color that goes with your color scheme. For example, I'd recommend a blue fizzy punch if you are going with a classic baby blue and white train color scheme.
Finally, a train baby shower cake is a must. See the great ideas for Wilton train cakes below and also the video which gives detailed instructions for creating your very own train cake.
Train Cake Ideas
Photo Credit: Wilton Train Cake Ideas
Get instructions to create any of the fun and clever train cakes shown above by clicking on the aforementioned link. Wilton also sells train-shaped candles, candies and other decorations for your party.
How To Make A Train Cake
Train Themed Baby Shower Game Ideas
Trying to come up with baby shower games that have a train theme can be difficult, but here are a few ideas to get you started. The other option is to buy printable classic games that feature a train border on the paper.
Pin the Number of the Engine - Make a large train engine out of construction paper or draw an engine directly on a posterboard. Give each of the shower guest a train number where they can write their name and a piece of double-sided tape. Blindfold each of them and ask them to pin the number on the engine. The guest closest to the correct location on the engine wins the game. This is a twist on the classic pin the tail on the donkey game.
Train Ice Breaker Game - This great game idea from Birthday in a Box is a fun way to get your guests mingling and getting to know each other. Get the detailed instructions and pattern here. The main idea in the game is to give each guest that arrives a piece of a train puzzle (2 pieces per train) and ask them to find their partner so they can hook the train together. The first partners to find each other win the game.
Trains Word Search - Using your computer you can create your own train-themed word search or print out this FREE version from homeschooling.com.
Train Themed Shower Favor Ideas
Give your guests a little something to take home with them as a thank you gift. For train themed showers, consider buying train-shaped lollipops or making train-shaped decorated sugar cookies. Tuck them into baby themed cellophane bags and tie them with a satin or curling ribbon. Then tie on a personalized favor hang tag that features the shower date, the mom-to-be's name and of course a fun train design. You can make hang tags yourself on the computer and print them on avery labels or you can purchase them online.
For a truly elegant favor choice, consider a crystal train favor like the one shown in the photograph above. Your guests will cherish it for years to come as they display them in their homes. The photo also shows some other great baby shower favors such as choo choo train shaped soaps in a clear gift box with a personalized hang tag, containers of lip balm featuring personalized train stickers on the lids, and personalized candy bar wrapper favors that have an entire train pattern and cute ingredients list on the back of the label.
Train Themed Shower Gift Ideas
Here are some cute ways to tie your baby shower gift in with the shower theme. Things like toy trains, silver-plated train banks that can be personalized, and train themed room decor are great gift choices.
If the nursery will be featuring a train theme, consider giving bedding, lamps, and other accessories. Many companies sell baby clothing and bibs that feature train appliques. Obviously, these items are a great choice too.
This post contains Amazon affiliate links and we will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on these links.
Great Gadget Gift Ideas for Dad!
What man does not love gadgets? They seem to have an endless fascination with these modern day "tools" that are often useful, sometime infuriating, and always a topic of conversation. I consulted my gadget-loving husband for some his favorite gadgets, or the ones he wished he had!
Your Dad will be proud to show off any of these gadgets the next time he gets together with his friends. Imagine how impressed they'll be when they find out you bought it for him, as a Father's Day present. Talk about gadget envy!
The King of Gadgets - James Bond
Portable GPS System
The GPS devices have really come down in price the past couple of years, while becoming more reliable and storing more information than ever. The best part about the portable systems is Dad can take it with him in the car or even on foot or on bike. Many new systems include trail maps and other recreational information, making a hand-held GPS useful for more than just finding that new restaurant. Of course, he can still use it to help navigate his way through traffic. It's also a great gift for guys that travel a lot, as they can get restaurant recommendations or find the office for their big meeting. Since we know they'll never stop and ask for directions anyway, at least this way they won't have to!
Is your coffee table filled with multiple remotes to handle the TV, DVD player, cable box, stereo, and more? Does trying to do something simple like watch a movie involve so many steps it feels like a launch sequence for the Space Shuttle? If you'd like to simplify his life (and yours), get one of the new programmable remotes. These aren't just a single remote that can control all the electronics in your family room; they can execute multiple steps with the single push of a button. Most are actually programmed by connecting them to your computer, where you follow a set-up wizard one time.
What makes them so great is the buttons are set-up around the actual task you want to perform. For example, let's say you just opened up a movie gift basket and put the movie in the DVD player. You simply click "Watch DVD" on the remote, and it will turn on the TV, change it to the right input, turn on the stereo and set that to the DVD setting, turn on your DVD player, and turn off anything that was on previously. It does all of that with a single press of a button! Even better, the fast forward / rewind buttons now will operate your DVD player, and not your CD player, because it knows what activity you are currently doing. These remotes are a life-saver and one of my current favorite gadgets for anyone.
Wireless Grill Meat Thermometer
If your father loves the barbeque, then this is one handy tool he is bound to appreciate. He can insert the thermometer into whatever he is cooking, then go back to watching the big game on the TV inside, and still keep an eye on his grilling duties by watching the temperature. Some models even have an alarm in case he nods off during the 7th inning stretch. This one is also handy when the weather is cooler and he doesn't want to be outside the whole time, or with larger cuts of meat that might take hours to grill on low.
P.S. A grilling themed gift basket would be a great choice too!
Wireless Grill Thermometers at Amazon
Swiss Army Golf Tool
From the makers of one of the all-time best selling gadgets, the Swiss Army Knife, comes a sport twist perfect for the duffer dad. If it's summer, it's golf season, which means it's time to head out to the links for the annual rite of unbridled optimism that all golfers share. The beauty of this little golf gift is it has all the things a golfer should have handy, and they come in one tool. There's a divot repair tool for the times he's lucky enough to land on the green, and a ball marker in case his putt is out of tap-in range, plus many more useful tools that only the Swiss would think of.
Swiss Army Golf Tools & More
Handheld Sports Trivia Game
Warning! Buying this for your father may result in him completely ignoring you for hours at a time. There's nothing like watching a bunch of men asking what you might consider to be absolutely ridiculous and arcane sports trivia questions, only to have one of them shout out the answer, followed inevitably by a round of high-fives and maybe even some fist pumping and yelling. Nevertheless, if your father is into sports trivia, this little toy is one of my favorite gifts for sports lovers and it will have him smiling.
Outdoor Weather Station
Does your dad watch the weather channel obsessively? Does he quote you the current barometric pressure in millibars and talk about fronts moving in and relative humidity? If so, he'll love a weather station gadget for Father's Day. They come in a dizzying array of options, and some even include moon phases, barometric pressure and other weather stats, in addition to the actual temperature outside.
If he likes to go to the bar and you're concerned about his or friend's driving safety, this is one item you'll want him to carry. These new gadgets will fit in a pocket (or purse) and give an instant readout of blood alcohol level when you breathe on them. It's always better to be safe than sorry if he's out drinking, and this gadget will help insure he arrives home okay.
Wireless Headphones for MP3 Player / iPod
If your father spends a lot of time listening to his iPod, he will probably enjoy some wireless headphones. This nifty gadget will allow dad to listen to his portable music player without any wires. He'll love not having to worry about getting tangled while working out, raking leaves, or just relaxing in his recliner and listening to music. Most of the brands include an adapter to work with any portable player and include volume adjustments. There are some manufactured for specific brands too, like the iPod, that will even let him skip play, pause, and skip songs, all from the headphones. Buy this unique gift for him and he'll feel like the coolest dad on the block wearing these headphones.
If you are here, then the odds are, you've got a graduate in your life who has just completed the big milestone of High School. Just what do you gift this special person with? An ordinary congratulations gift just won't do in this situation!
You have to think creatively and plan a graduation gift that will be a welcomed surprise. So how do you do that? There are so many new things out there! Well here are some ideas to get you started, because it's time to give you some ideas!
Paraphrase Their Personality
Choose Something That Matches
Match your gift to the student's personality. If you have a real music fan, you might look into getting a gift card good for 1,000 song downloads for their mp3 player, or get them credits they can use for iTunes. They'll love being able to select their own songs, and your graduation gifts will go a long way as tunes are relatively cheap-usually 99 cents each. Wrap it all up with a new iPod and you're a hero.
Bookworms Like Gifts Too!
For the book lover on your list, why not give them a new e-reader tucked into a nice book gift basket with gift cards for e-books?
The technology in these little machines is amazing. You can now purchase e-readers that are so much more than just electronic books. You can also browse the Internet, shop online, and send and receive email. They can also play an amazing amount of music.
The storage capabilities are vast and graduates can create their own playlists from songs they download. The machines are small enough to be stowed in a purse or backpack and your graduate will be the envy of all his friends.
Modern Grad Gift Ideas
Graduates Love Cash!
Another gift that is always welcome at graduation is cash, but the way you package the cash can make it fun and unique. Consider placing the cash inside a puzzle. Stores sell maze puzzles that are plastic. You insert the bills inside it then close it. The box can't be opened until the recipient solves the maze. It's usually pretty easy to complete, but a fun challenge.
You can also make a dollar tree. Get a wire form from a craft store and decorate it with dollar bills. You can find a form that's used for displaying photos that has wire arms. Attach bills to each of the arms and you'll be able to say that just this once, money does grow on trees.
Look To Their Future
Their Future's Bright - Will They Need Sunglasses?
The way to make a graduation gift unique and special is to think about what the recipient will need as they move on to the next stage of their lives. It could be that they are backpacking through Europe before college and could use a pair of hiking boots.
You could give a gift certificate that allows him or her to choose the pair they want. Perhaps they could use a great leather bag for traveling. Make a special purchase at a great leather goods store and select something you know they can't help but fall in love with.
Make it Special
A Gift Just For Them!
Graduation gifts need not be overly expensive, but they should be very thoughtful. Include a card with a special graduation day quote in it or a photo of the student when they were younger. Any special touches you can add to make the day extra special and memorable for your graduate will be remembered.
Think of how you know the graduate and any special memories you've shared. Then build a gift around something that relates to those special moments. Your gift will be really heartfelt and received with much graciousness.
Laugh. Dance. Graduate.
Throwing a Grad Party
If you're the lucky parent or guardian who is hosting the graduation party, props to you! You recognize that this is a special time in their life and it calls for celebration!
Planning a big party like this, however, can be stressful because it's a lot of work! But as long as you are organized and prepared, the process will be an easy puzzle to complete.
Here are some helpful tips on what to keep on your planner:
- Send graduation invitations at least 4-6 weeks before the party.
- Have a plan for food, whether you are cooking or catering in.
- Don't forget the graduation favors or even graduation cookie favors for your guests.
- Do you have enough tables and chairs?
- Your guests will appreciate games or activities for the kids.
- Do you have a restroom prepared?
- Prepare an area to celebrate the graduate. Photos, proud moments, trophies, etc.
The roots of education are bitter, but the fruit is sweet. ~Aristotle