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2021 Gift Guide

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I know shopping for friends and relatives can be a difficult chore for some people. “What if they don’t like it?” “What if They already have one?” “He buys everything he wants, or says he doesn’t need anything…”

Today I am going to share some ideas with y’all (including some of my favorite things for each of my hobbies). I’m trying to keep budgets in mind, so hopefully you find an idea for someone on your list and that idea fits your budget.

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. When you click on these links (and pictures), I may receive a small commission – as an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. It will not cost you anything. I only share products and services that I truly believe in and think are great.

For the cook-

Cooks like kitchen gadgets. Here are some of my favorite/most used kitchen tools.

KitchenAid Stand Mixer: Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer – A KitchenAid stand Mixer has been in my home since before I was born. I remember so many years of making Christmas cookies in it with my mom and my sister. Then as my interest in cooking and baking grew, I branched out to cakes made from scratch, breads, etc. This is an important kitchen appliance for anyone who enjoys baking. If you were thinking about getting one of these for someone (or yourself) you’re in luck, they are on sale!

Food Processor:  There are loads of options when it comes to food processors. My top three include the KitchenAid stand alone food processor. If you (or who you are buying for) don’t have a KitchenAid stand mixer, this is a great option.

If you/they do have a KitchenAid stand mixer, a really nice option is the food processor attachment. In fact, you can get a KitchenAid mixer attachment for a variety of purposes (such as the pasta roller, food processor, meat grinder, and the peeler/shredder/slicer). It is a great way to extend the capabilities of this one appliance.

Cuisinart is another great, and more budget friendly, food processor option. The first food processor I had was a Cuisinart 8 cup one just like this:

Dehydrator: I wrote a post earlier this year about how my dehydrator is one of my favorite kitchen appliances, and all the ways I use it. I use my dehydrator to make jerky and fruit leather, but I also use it to dry herbs. I have recently started using it to dry greens and veggies that are on the verge of having to go to the compost. I dry carrots (roots and greens), tomato skins, squash, etc. then grind them in my food processor to be added to soups later (adds vitamins, minerals and flavor). This one is a great option – with 5 trays, you can tackle any drying project. (BPA-Free!)

Air Fryer: I love my Dash Air Fryer. It is great for getting things crispy without the grease from traditional frying, and it is faster than preheating the oven. I have even cooked a whole chicken in my air fryer! It was delicious and only took 50 minutes!

Popcorn Popper: The Dash Popcorn popper is my latest addition to my kitchen collection, and I don’t think I will ever be able to go back to microwave popcorn. I wrote a post about making Kettle Corn on the stove. In that post I mentioned I had found this popcorn popper and was considering getting it…I did. I love it! It is a family favorite now. You can even use my kettle corn recipe in this popper (though it comes with a little booklet of various recipes to try). It has a spinner which eliminates all the shaking, and it keeps the popcorn moving so that it does not burn. This popcorn maker is easy to use, easy to clean, and it makes creating different flavors of popcorn a breeze!

Food Saver: The Food Saver has been a long-time staple in my household. It can be used to divide up meat when you buy it…it also protects against freezer burn! It has so many uses, and it can help you save money over the course of a year.

Stocking Stuffer Ideas:

For the gardener-

Fiskars Weed Claw:  Gone are the days of spraying dandelions with toxic chemicals and being frustrated while trying to pull them up – just to have the root break and have it to pop back up in a few weeks! I think this garden/yard tool is genius. It makes harvesting dandelions so much easier. Yes, I said harvesting…all parts of the dandelion are edible and have medicinal benefits (and the roots smell like chocolate cake if you roast them in the oven). I plan on writing a post about this soon. This gadget is a back, knee, and sanity saver!

Seed Bank: All gardeners know you need to start with good seeds to grow a good garden. This seed bank contains over 17,880 non-GMO seeds for growing a variety of fruits, veggies, and herbs. It is a bit pricey, but it will make a great gift for anyone in your life who loves growing their own food or is trying to be more sustainable and self-reliant.

Stocking Stuffer Ideas:

For the crafters-

Shopping for crafters can be tricky…it is a hobby with many niches under the crafting umbrella.

Embroiderers: If you are buying for a crafter, there is a chance that a set of embroidery hoops might be a good idea. And why not make it a little bundle with a new book of ideas, and some thread so they can jump straight into a new project.

Yarn:  Yarn is a great gift for crocheters and knitters! I personally love Red Heart brand Yarn (though I do use others too), but Red Heart is Made in the USA – that is something that matters to me.
You also get a good number of yards for the price of each skein, and they have a nice variety of colors.

Crafty Books: Whether the crafter you are buying for crochets, knits, cross stitches, embroiders, or makes miniatures (etc.) they could always use a book with new patterns and inspiration. Here are a few of my favorites:

Stocking Stuffer Ideas-

For the photographer-

Camera: This is my current camera (Nikon D3500). I upgraded a few years ago. I love it. It can even connect to my phone to download the pictures – that makes sharing the pics via text, email, or social media really easy. It has a few limitations that upgrading would take care of (lens compatibility with older manual lenses for example), but that was more money than I was willing to spend at the time. I got this great bundle. I know the price is scary, but the cost for the quality camera, and all the accessories the bundle included have been worth it for me. If you are just looking for a great camera, you might want to check this one out.

My first digital camera was the Nikon CoolPix. It is a great compact digital camera that is easy to use. It is a great option for younger photographers as well as the older generations. Truthfully smart phones take pretty great pictures these days, but there is something about a hefty real camera that phones will never be able to replace.

Tripod: The great thing about this tripod is that it has a mount for your digital camera, but it also has a mount for your phone and tablet too! A quality tripod is hard to find these days, there are cheaper options but they tend to be really light and well, just cheap.

Camera Bag: If you have a camera that has interchangeable lenses, filters, cleaning cloths, lens caps, back up batteries, etc. you’re going to want a good camera bag to hold it all. Here are three great options at various price points ($16.99, $31.99, and $59.99 respectively) and style preferences:

Stocking Stuffer Ideas-



For the techie-

External Hard Drive:  A few years ago, I was in the middle of a big project when my laptop died. I had to take it to a special data retrieval company in downtown Dallas and paid a lot of money to have them salvage all the content I had saved on that machine. I should have known better, having grown up with a computer nerd dad, but I had only saved my project on that laptop. I have since paid the price for that painful lesson and now have two external hard drives that I regularly back everything up to. In my opinion, if you have a computer, you should definitely have an external hard drive to back things up to (and actually do it). Again, there are various price ranges for these gadgets. Also in my opinion, there is no point in buying an external hard drive with less than 1TB of memory. Here is a good starting point. The one below has 5TB of memory for $99.99-

Shower Speaker: Who doesn’t love singing in the shower? There is nobody but the shampoo bottles to judge you when you hit a shaky high note…
A shower speaker like this one connects with your smart phone (via Bluetooth) to allow you to listen to your favorite tunes without having to blare it from the counter. This speaker is rechargeable (so no need for the recipient to keep buying batteries), and most importantly, it is waterproof.
It isn’t just for the shower either…it is great for boats, or out by the pool.

Electronics Repair Kit: Electronics have tiny screws and all kinds of geeky stuff in their guts. If you have a “I can fix that” person in your life, an electronics repair kit might make a great gift for them. Here are two great options ($21.49, and $69.99 respectively).

Stocking Stuffers-

For the life-long learner-

What about the gift of courses in something they are interested in?

Master Mentalism and Magic Tricks – Do you know a natural showman (or show woman)? Do you have an aspiring magician on your shop for list? This course will have them astounding friends and family before the Christmas dishes are put away.

Chocolate University Online – Do you have a chocoholic in your life? A chocolate snob? Perhaps sending them to Chocolate University is just the gift for them. For more details, click on the link above to see if this course is a good fit for your chocolate loving loved one.

Learn Hebrew – Do you know someone who wants to learn a new language? How about Hebrew? With this class the student can read the original Bible – without the translations!

For the bookworm-  

Mug: Everyone needs a good book and hot beverage in the winter. How about giving your favorite bookworm a new mug to accompany their winter reading? These are a couple of cute options:

Novel Teas: If you’re like me, you have at least one person in your life that loves books AND tea. These Novel Teas have quotes from literary classics on each tea tag. Great for your favorite [tea] bag ladies in your life.

Feed the Habit- You can never go wrong with an Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or Half Price Books gift card for the book lovers in your life.

Stocking Stuffer Ideas:

For the Patriot-

Love It Apparel Co: LIAC has great shirts of for many themes (Christmas, pets, teachers, Christian, nerds, etc.) but their patriotic section has some of my favorites. LIAC is a small business, so if you are thinking about shopping small their shirt selection is a great choice. #GodBlessAmerica
If you use the discount code: BENCHLEY you can save 20% off your total order until 11:59pm on December 31, 2021. https://www.loveitapparelco.com (You can use that promo code up to 3 times.) What a deal!

Betsy Ross Tumbler:  For those who both love their country AND staying hydrated, this 32 oz Betsy Ross Tumbler might be just the ticket!

USA Waffle Maker: Finally! The rest of the country can get a taste of joy Texans get while eating Texas shaped waffles at hotels!

Stocking stuffer Ideas:

For the Grandparents-

“Then Sings My Soul”: is a series of books (3) that each share the stories behind 150 of the world’s greatest and most beloved hymns.

Socks: It is an undeniable fact that as you age you tend to get colder. That’s what makes good warm and cozy socks great gifts for the elders in your life. If they have the anti-skid patterns on the bottom, even better!

Ideas for the “I don’t need anything”/”I already have everything” person in your life-

Grill accessories – every grill master needs the proper tools…

Universal socket – now it doesn’t matter that the 10mm socket has mysteriously gone missing…

Magnetic wrist cuff – keep what you need for your project right on your cuff…handy right?! (I couldn’t help myself.)

Bluetooth beanie – I have one of these and I love it! I wear it in the colder months in Texas while biking. It fits under my helmet and gives me access to my tunes, while keeping my head and ears warm and still allowing me to hear nearby traffic (for safety).

Back Scratcher – ‘Cause we all get that itch we can’t quite reach in the middle of our backs.

Hercules charging station – We all have things that have to charge, this keeps them all in close proximity and cleans up the cluttered look of all the cords.

Himalayan salt scrub Himalayan sea salt has many health benefits (such as: promoting healthy pH balance in your cells, particularly your brain cells; promoting blood sugar health and helping to reduce the signs of aging; supporting respiratory health; promoting sinus health and bone strength, and in conjunction with water, helps the regulation of your blood pressure). Plus, who doesn’t need a good soak every now and then.

Bath pillow – Nothing is more relaxing than a nice hot bubble bath, except a nice hot bubble bath with some neck support.

Also, for anyone who has their fingers, toes, legs, and eyes crossed to win the phone sanitizer from my giveaway, in case you don’t win, or if you want to give one as a gift, here is the closest thing now available: Phone Soap Phone and Accessories Sanitizer  


I hope the suggestions I have offered help make your holiday shopping a little easier this year.

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