Finding the right present for your family can be surprisingly difficult, especially as you all get a bit older.
When your family was younger things were way easier. You could get kids candy and toys, and your dad always liked getting a novelty tie right?
Now things are way tougher. Holidays and birthdays have gone from being a highlight of the year to a source of stress. What the heck happened?
Our relatives have always been there to support us, so it’s only natural that as we get older we want to put more thought into the gifts we give them to be sure they know how much we care about them.
The last thing we want to do is come off as lazy or unthoughtful, and that’s why many of these tips are on the sentimental side.
Please note that none of these top 5 family present ideas are sponsored or in any way promoted with affiliate links. Only honest unbiased suggestions here!
Check out these top five family gifts for grown ups 2019
1. Family photoshoot
This is one of my favorite gifts because it’s both a fun activity as well as a great thing to hang on your wall afterward.
One of the first things you’ll want to do is to pick the style of your photoshoot. Will it be formal, casual, or novelty? Indoors or outdoors? In the studio or at home?
Next up, pick the photographer/studio. Check out Google Maps or Yelp and sort by ratings. Make sure you check with the photographer how much prints will be (in case you want prints for everyone) as well as how much extra they charge for digital copies. Also ask about if they’ll be putting watermarks on the photos, and if that’s something you can remove (if you don’t want them).
Finally, for the big day make sure that everyone is dressed and groomed appropriately. You’ll want to make sure you’re all on the right wavelength when it comes to style so that you don’t clash. Nothing worse than people wearing t-shirts and shorts when everyone else is formal! Ask your photographer about what colors to go for or avoid for your particular photoshoot - this varies depending on color, black & white, indoor/outdoor etc.
2. Special restaurant visit
It doesn’t have to be an expensive gourmet fine dining experience. A quirky or unusual restaurant will often be much cheaper and more memorable. If budget is an issue then set it up as a meal for two, else try to gather the whole family!
Call the restaurant in advance and see if you can organize a set menu - ideally a sampler, as well as making a reservation so that everything is prepared and paid in advance so that your loved can just sit back and enjoy the experience!
Not sure where to go? Check Google Maps, Yelp, and Tripadvisor for tips. Sort by rating and proximity and go from there.
3. Gourmet Coffee or Tea
If your family is anything like mine, then a tea and coffee break is a critical point in any family gathering. This is a perfect time to sample a gourmet blend that you normally wouldn’t splurge on.
When buying coffee you’ll want to keep two key points in mind.
First is if you get pre-ground or whole beans. If your relative has a grinder then go whole bean. If they don’t have a grinder, find out what kind of coffee brewing device they have and get a suitable grind for that (this matters!).
Second is caffeine levels. People who don’t frequently drink much coffee may get jittery if you get something too strong, and likewise, a weaker coffee may come off as too mild to a frequent coffee drinker.
When buying tea you’ll want to pick between fruit/herbal blends or traditional teas. This is totally up to taste and you’ll have to use your best judgment based on what you know about your relative. Tea shops often sell samplers with many different types, which makes a great choice if you’re stuck between two choices!
Finally, make sure you ask your coffee/tea shop attendant for advice when you’re there. Going to a smaller (ideally independent) boutique will often get you more unique choices and more knowledgeable staff.
4. Local theater or concert tickets
This gift is great because I prefer gifting experiences rather than physical objects.
I find that theaters are great for people who prefer sitting and a shorter (2-3 hour) activity, while concerts can often be a bit longer and involve a fair amount of standing.
Check out your local theater website for up to date listings, or websites like Songkick for local concert listings.
Stuck trying to figure out which to pick? Think about what your loved one may have enjoyed while younger, or what their favorite shows are. Chances are that if they enjoy singing and music then a musical is always a safe and fun choice! Worst case, check out the local reviews and pick the critics top choice and hope for the best!
5. Planting a tree
A society grows great when old men plant trees in whose shade they know they shall never sit.
Is an old aphorism that I quite enjoy, and why not put that to use as a gift?
Granted, this tip only works if one of you have a yard or garden - but if you do, then this is one great tip that’s both memorable as well as fun to do all together!
First head to garden center/plant nursery and ask the staff for what trees are best for your region. I don’t want to give any specific tips because climate and soil types are important, but I’m a huge fan of a good apple tree because I love fruit and find that the trees are pretty low maintenance and beautiful.
Next, take gather your family and find a suitable spot for your planting your sapling. Keep in mind that this tree may potentially grow quite large, so keep any roofs and phone lines in mind. Also, beware of sidewalks and pavements that roots may mess up.
Now comes the fun part! Everyone takes their turns digging the hole and carefully planting and fertilizing your beautiful new tree. Give it a name, and take a photo with everyone together. Now, every time you see that tree you’ll remember that special day while enjoying a fresh tasty organic apple!
Still not sure what to get?
So this last suggestion is a bit biased, but hear me out:
How about getting a unique email address for your entire family? email@example.com addresses for everyone, even pets!
Our family can now reach one another with easy to remember addresses like mom@ & dad@ as well as all our first names. We have our own family mailing list for easy sharing of photos without resorting to
Check if your name is available here: