Great Thank You Gifts for the Holidays

  • Thank You for Your Help

    It’s holiday time again and there are so many gifts to buy. It’s hard enough to find the right presents for the people you know well, but what about the ones you don’t? Here we look at gift ideas for all those special people who you want to thank for their service to you and your family, including your children’s teachers, your nanny, your personal assistant or any of the others who help make your days easier. Photo credit:  Tony the Misfit
    The Gift of Stationery
  • The Gift of Stationery

    Everyone needs to take notes and send letters from time to time, so these affordable gifts are sure to please anyone, especially teachers, who use paper products every day. Peartree Greetings is a wonderful destination for beautiful stationery, including notepads, custom stamps, and cards of all kinds. And just for MainStreet readers, Peartree is offering a discount of 15% off all orders through Dec. 31. Just enter the code MSTREET15 to save. Also, check out the teacher appreciation pads from Bonnie Marcus (pictured). At $7.50, they're a charming, fun way to reward your kids’ teachers. The award-winning stationery collection is sold in more than 1,000 stores around the world and boasts Eva Longoria, Christina Aguilera and Marcia Cross as fans. Mommypads also offers a lovely selection of notepads and notecards, some made special for that special teacher in your life, with many options under $30. Photo Credit: Bonnie Marcus
  • Lunchtime

    Lunchboxes and totes are great unisex gifts, so they are appropriate for anyone. ECO Lunchboxes’ 3-in-1 Stainless Steel Lunchbox (pictured here) is the perfect size for a sandwich and two sides. It’s also washable & reusable so it will save the environment while it saves you cash. The price tag is only $22. Fridge-to-go® offers several different insulated lunch totes that make great gifts for teachers, executive assistants and babysitters. Our favorite is the Medium Lunch Fridge, for $19.99. Photo Credit: ECO Lunchboxes
    For Beauty Junkies
  • For Beauty Junkies

    Beauty products make great gifts because they can be used every day. Who doesn’t like to look good and feel great when they leave their house in the morning? The NYX All I Ever Wanted kit (pictured) is loaded with eye shadows, lip glosses and blushes, all for $28. Burt's Bees has a Natural Manicure Set that features manicure favorites in an adorable – and reusable – zippered clutch. The set includes Almond Milk Beeswax Hand Cream, Replenishing Lip Balm, Lemon Butter Cuticle Crème, Cuticle Sticks and an emory board. Don’t forget that men get manicures too, and at $14.99, this is an easy way to give any man the gift of good grooming. Photo Credit: NYX
    Bath & Body
  • Bath & Body

    Chances are, your family helpers like to unwind just as much as you do after a long day of babysitting, cleaning the house or running around doing errands. For them, there’s no better gift than a relaxing bath set. Caldrea’s Petite Sink Set comes with an elegant stainless steel caddy, which holds the soap and hand lotion. Regularly priced at $26, the set is on sale now at for $16.95. Bath by Bettijo takes a different angle, using herbs and aromatherapy for the ultimate full-body chillout. Its Soothing Tub Tea (pictured) lets you soak with whole herbs and botanicals like Spearmint, Eucalyptus, Lavender and Chamomile. Just tell the recipient to breathe deeply and let the stress evaporate. It’ll be the best $24 show of appreciation you ever give. Photo Credit: Bath by Bettijo
    Light the Candles
  • Light the Candles

    Whether scented or not, candles are relaxing just by looking at them. And they make great gifts for anyone in need of a little stress relief, which is probably everyone. Kiss My Face Soy Wax Candles are created with hand-poured soy wax, which helps them burn cleaner and cooler than traditional candles. They also feature an unbleached cotton wick that burns for up to 42 hours. These are available in four scents and colors: Grassy Mint, Lavender Mandarin, Lemongrass Clary Sage and Pomegranate Acai. As an added bonus, this holiday season Kiss My Face will donate 10% of all profits from the Peace collection to Seeds of Peace, an organization that promotes friendship and leadership skills among young people from regions in conflict. At $18.99, that’s a good bang for your buck. Anthology Place Soy Candles smell great and are good for the environment, too. Packaged in a gorgeous 40% recycled glass jar (which can be reused after the candles burn out) they come wrapped in compostable cellophane bags with biodegradable cotton ribbon closures to save you the time of wrapping them yourself. Anthology candles retail for $18.95, and are all hand-poured from 100% pure soy wax. Their long-lasting fragrances are suitable for any mood. Photo Credit: Anthology
    Hers and His
  • Hers and His

    Sometimes we all like to kill two birds with one stone, and “his and hers” gifts can show your appreciation to all the couples in your life. The SLAPWatch combines the modern and cool silicone look of Zanybandz with the fun of a slap bracelet thrown in. These watches, with six different face and band color options, make a perfect gift for either him or her, while saying thank you to both. $17.99 each. The Ms. & Mrs. Minimergency Kits for Her and for Him are compact, practical go-to kits for the things you need, but never have with you: lip balm, breath freshener, mending kit, deodorant, cleansing towelettes, etc. Kits for her are available in six festive jewel-toned colors for $12, with kits for him packaged in a masculine metal tin, also for $12. Photo Credit: SLAPWATCH
    Just for Him
  • Just for Him

    Everyone knows a guy who loves cool tee shirts. The ESPN Sports Heaven Collection is the gift for that guy. The shirts are vintage-inspired, paying homage to ESPN’s original programming lineup and logos, with sports such as Full Contact Karate, Ultimate Frisbee and Slo-Pitch Softball. Super soft and super cool, for $28. The award-winning Jimi Wallet is another great guy gift, since most guys seem to hate carrying wallets. This one, for $14.95, is compact, water resistant, and translucent – it’s as much at home in an urban hipster's pocket as it is around the neck of an exec. And students love it because it's compact and great any time you need to show ID, but have your hands full. Photo Credit: Jimi
    The Joy of Wine and Chocolate
  • The Joy of Wine and Chocolate

    You don’t really need to know anything about a person to know that they like chocolate and wine. This novel gift of California Meritage wine has been (literally) wrapped in rich, Belgian dark chocolate so that you can break off pieces as you drink your wine and enjoy both at once. It’s presented in cellophane wrapping and is tied with a ribbon, and each bottle is also packaged with a holiday-themed tag. As an added bonus, MainStreet readers can save 10% toward any wine gift by using coupon code MainStreet at checkout. $44.95. How about a great wine accessory that will improve the taste of any wine in seconds?  Vinturi makes wonderful wine aerators that have been endorsed by over 200 wineries in Napa Valley. At $39.95 it’s a great way to get the most out of any bottle. Antoine Amrani Chocolates have been described as some of the best chocolates you can find outside of Paris. The beautiful, provocative designs, exceptional quality, and preservative-free ingredients from local farms and organic growers make the 9-piece indulgence set a chic and delicious gift for $23. Photo Credit:
    Tea Time
  • Tea Time

    Takeya brings an Eastern flavor to a practical gift for any tea drinkers who merit your appreciation. The Japanese-inspired and fashionable beverage makers and containers are made of a glass substitute that make them perfect for tossing in your bag on your way to work or while traveling. The airtight lid on this iced tea maker keeps the tea fresh and won’t spill. For $24.99 it will make any tea aficionado happy. If you need something to put into your teapot, Teaquilibrium’s whole leaf blends indulge the senses with beautiful colors and inviting aromas. There are several wonderful gift options available for $20-$30. Photo Credit: Takeya
    Coffee Time
  • Coffee Time

    The fact that coffee is a regular part of most people’s morning routine should not mean that quality isn’t important. This gift set from will give your coffee lover a selection of 12-oz blends, as well as a decorated travel mug and coffee scoop, all wrapped in a beautiful holiday basket for $27.95. You'll be happy to save the time and money it takes to dress up the gift. If your gift recipients already have their favorite blend, give them the latest in travel-mug technology with this auto-sealing stainless steel mug from Contigo. You press the button to drink, and the mug seals automatically to make spills and drips a thing of the past (We promise – we personally tested one!). It will keep coffee or tea warm for hours, and fits in most car cup holders. At $19.99, it’s an economical gift that can be used every day of the week. Photo Credit:
    Cute Gift Sets
  • Cute Gift Sets

    If you aren’t sure what to get someone, you can't go wrong with something that just looks good. Beecology has a sweet little gift crate with four 1-oz. bottles of its natural honey-based beauty products, in flavors like grapefruit and lemongrass or peppermint and honey. For under $10, it’s a great way to say thank you. Joico has a trio of hair care goodies that comes in a shimmering silver bag. The K-Pak gift set contains shampoo, conditioner and styling oil for $12.95. You can only find it in salons, so visit the website for the location nearest you. Photo Credit: Joico
    Little Somethings
  • Little Somethings

    Sometimes you only need a little something to show somebody you care. The Philosophy Gingerbread Man Holiday Ornament is a decorative gift with a surprise inside: A 2-oz. bottle of shampoo, shower gel or bubble bath. It comes in various flavors for only $6. Another great small gift are Whole Truth’s Healthy Beauty Bath Bars. They are handmade and cured for four weeks, which makes them last longer than uncured bars. These natural bars are made with organic oils and butters without any synthetic ingredients, and they are available on sale for less than $5 in 25 delicious fragrances. Photo Credit: Whole Truth
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