Friends and family often come to me for advice on life's inevitable events. Family triumphs, sadness, celebrations, etc. In general, gifts should be practical and functional and clutter-free.
I don't claim to have all the answers but I can share what has worked for me in the past. And by 'worked' I mean I have gotten positive feedback from these gifts.
Hospital Stay or RecoveryThese folks will be trying to rest quietly either at the hospital or back at home
Flowers are a safe choice almost every time and also clutter free. But flowers do not meet my practical and functional requirement. And chances are, the patient will have received plenty of flowers from other well-wishers. In my experience, thinking outside the box means a lot. Your relationship with the person determines what type of gift you might give them. You might know your sister's literary tastes more than your neighbor, but would still like to let your neighbor know you care. I live far away from those I love, so I have to mail items, but if you are close by and can deliver it in person? Even better! And of course the gift of your time and friendship stopping by to visit is the most important. Instead of flowers, consider:
- Hand cream -if you live nearby, even offer to give her a manicure!
- Audio book
- Recording of a show - (My late aunt loved the Capital Steps so when she was ill I sent her a recording of their latest skits, available on amazon. Sometimes being able to laugh a little bit makes a world of difference.)
- Funny movies
- iPod loaded with music or podcasts
- If you're on a tight budget, even a portable radio will be appreciated
- Crossword puzzle book -and pencil!
- Fluffy socks
- Comfy PJ pants or robe [depending on the surgery]
- Food treat - homemade cookies, their favorite candy, etc. [depending on the surgery]