One of the things I wanted to do this year is 12 Days of Christmas Gifts, I searched all over the internet (aka Pinterest) for ideas but on every post I found, they were just doing random gifts that didn't apply to the song, you know "on the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me..." People were just giving out things like cookies or whatever matched the number (Day 10... 10 items). Well for me, that kind of ruins the whole thing, so I decided to make up my own list of gifts to correspond with the gifts in the song as closely as I could. Believe me, as simple as they are, it was not easy to come up with some of these things! So I thought I'd share my ideas in case anyone was thinking the same thing as I was and needed a little help.
These gifts will be for my boyfriend but they are not specific to guys, and if they are I've added extra ideas that would work for anyone. So even if you want to do 12 Days of Christmas for your parent, sibling, kids, neighbor, friend, or boyfriend/girlfriend/husband/wife these gifts should work out juuust fine. Enjoy! :)
1. On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me... a partridge in a pear tree.
This one is pretty simple, I focused on the pear tree part and didn't bother to put anything in for the partridge since there only needs to be one present on this day. Of course if the person you are doing this for happens to like the Partridge Family, go ahead and buy them a copy, but that was not the case for me. So I went with pear flavored Jelly Bellies, you can buy these in bulk at candy stores that have each Jelly Belly flavor sold individually, I got mine at the grocery store (Sobey's - in Canada), but they are probably not hard to find. Other options that work: Pears soap bars, can of sliced pears, those fruit cup snacks that have pears in them. To make mine work better with the song I'm tying a sprig off one of my pine trees out back with ribbon around the bag of Jelly Bellies, then on the ribbon I'm tying a gift tag in the shape of a bird [partridge]. Each day I'll write the part of the song on the gift tag.
2. On the second day of Christmas my true love gave to me... two turtle doves.
There weren't too many options for this. I wanted to get both parts in so I'm getting Turtles chocolates, you can buy a pack of 3 of them near the chocolate bars sometimes, or you could just buy a small box. And for the doves part I'm using Dove chocolates, again you can buy a small bag or a chocolate bar, depending on what you want to give them. Other options that work: Dove/Dove Men's products like deodorant, soap, body wash, body lotion, etc.
3. On the third day of Christmas my true love gave to me... three french hens.
This one took me a while, and led me to wonder why there had to be SO many birds in the song! If you have the time and like to cook, you could buy three of those little "Cornish game" hens and cook and serve them, they probably aren't too hard to find, you should be able to get them at just about any grocery store, and they are very small so three wouldn't be too many. I, however, am a University student, during December I have final exams and I do not have time to be cooking all kinds of things. So I bought three cans of chicken noodle soup for the hen part, and to make it french I'm going to get a baguette of french bread, this is also more affordable than buying the game hens and my boyfriend really likes chicken noodle soup (who doesn't?) so it works out. I really couldn't think of anything else that would work for this.
4. On the fourth day of Christmas my true love gave to me... four calling birds.
Originally (yes I looked up the origins), the words to this song were "four colley birds," which I guess means something like black birds, however in the modern version of the song, everyone says calling birds. Well I couldn't think of anything that would go with that so I gave him a pair of gloves and two hand warmer packets - those little things you buy at the dollar store and when you open them they react and get warm, these are great for sticking in your mittens or socks when skating, playing hockey, or just out in the cold. In order to make this work I'll write the part of the song on the gift card and then underneath... "to keep your hands warm while you call your bird ;)" it's a little far fetched and tacky maybe but nothing else seemed to be something my boyfriend could use. Other options that work: prepaid phone cards, international calling cards, new cell phone, cell phone cases (4), or candy that comes in a plastic cellphone.
5. On the fifth day of Christmas my true love gave to me... five golden rings!
Well unless you want to buy real golden rings (which my boyfriend would have liked), you have to find something that plays off the song. I used the search on my liquor store's website to find beers with the word "gold/golden" in the name, and bought five individual cans, the one's I bought were called "golden pheasant" which I thought fitted pretty well since there are so many birds in the song! lol. But any will do. Of course you may not want to give beer to the person you are doing this for so... Other options that work: golden [tone] rings or earrings, five 'golden' donuts (honey crullers, original, old-fashioned glazed) - I really like this one because they are actually ring shaped but I didn't want to have to pick them up the day of because I would be busy studying for exams.
6. On the sixth day of Christmas my true love gave to me... six geese-a-laying.
More birds... well I sort of took the geese/laying part from this verse and got gifts that had to do with eggs. I bought three packs of Cadbury Mini Eggs and three Kinder Surprise eggs. Thank goodness for that because I don't know what I would've done with geese! lol, a goose feather pillow??. Other options that work: Cadbury Cream Eggs (I didn't get these because we think they're gross), or you could make recipes with eggs like a six egg omelette, soft/hard-boiled eggs, etc. These can be pretty easy to do and you could make them over the day since probably nobody would eat six eggs at a time.
7. On the seventh day of Christmas my true love gave to me... seven swans-a-swimming. Okay well... I got lucky with this one. We have a nice restaurant in a small town about ten minutes from our house called 'The Swan' and they sell gift certificates. So I got him a gift certificate to there so we can go during the Christmas season for a date sometime after my exams are over. Of course you may not have a restaurant called the Swan near you... Other options that work: a paper gift certificate (or seven) folded like an origami swan (trust me it's not that hard, just Google it), or maybe some sort of gift certificate or membership/month pass to your local swimming pool (get it? ;) ).
8. On the eighth day of Christmas my true love gave to me... eight maids-a-milking.
You have 'maids' and 'milk' so there are all kinds of things that work for this: DairyMilk chocolate bars, SunMaid raisins or raisin bread, MinuteMaid juice boxes/bottles, Milk Duds candies, cartons of eggnog, or those little boxes of Nestle chocolate milk you buy in the juice isle that come in three packs. I'm doing an assortment of these to make a total of eight gifts.
9. On the ninth day of Christmas my true love gave to me... nine ladies dancing.
Okay these higher numbers get really difficult because they are people... how am I supposed to do that?! Well my boyfriend and I really like Tom Jones so I found a Tom Jones CD with 10 songs and wrote on the gift tag "Nine songs to get the ladies dancing, and one song for you ;)." This applied to us the best but you can personalize this with another CD that has dance music. Other options that work: a dance video game (we like Just Dance for the Wii), a Christmas movie with dancing in it (White Christmas, Holiday Inn - write on gift tag "There are probably nine ladies dancing in this movie."), or if you are lucky, tickets to a local show that has dancers in it - I wanted to go to something like the Nutcracker ballet but there was nothing going on at theaters near us during this time of the year, everything was at the beginning of December, look up your local theaters and see if you can find anything.
10. On the tenth day of Christmas my true love gave to me... ten lords-a-leaping.
This is another weird one haha, how was I going to get ten lords-a-leaping? Well I got five pairs of long johns and five pairs of socks. Since they are pairs you could just get five pairs to equal 10 total but my boyfriend needed both, long johns come in handy when playing hockey during Ottawa Winters. Other options that work: leggings/stockings/nylons for girls/women, a Lord of the Dance DVD if they happen to be a fan of him, my mom is the only person I know who likes him! :P
11. On the eleventh day of Christmas my true love gave to me... eleven pipers piping.
Umm this one took me a while. Unless you want the sound of a bagpipe Christmas music CD in your house, which probably wouldn't be that bad but who knows, then this might take some time. I got an assortment of gifts that work: licorice pipes (great at Christmastime because they look like Santa's pipe and you can eat them), Popeye cigarettes, a bubble pipe and bubbles, all of these work but you have to get eleven! Well I was lucky because my boyfriend has a wooden pipe that I got him for Christmas last year (looks just like Santa's!) so I bought him some pipe screens, and liquid pipe cleaner. You can buy flavored tobacco at specialty stores that is meant to be smoked in a pipe and can be quite nice but it really only applies if you are giving this to someone who already likes it, otherwise this would be an odd gift.
12. On the twelfth day of Christmas my true love gave to me... twelve drummers drumming. Made it all the way to the final day and then you get this... what are you supposed to do with this?! Well my boyfriend happens to really like drumming so I am getting him a Buddy Rich CD (a jazz drummer he really likes) or a Benny Grebb CD hopefully with twelve songs on it. You could also get: a 12 Pack of Drum Stick ice cream treats (not the best at Wintertime but always yummy), chicken or turkey drumsticks, or if you're giving these gifts to a drummer you could get them drumming lesson books, pairs of drum sticks, or pads to put on their drum set. If it's for a child you could give them a toy drum set.
Well I hope you enjoyed these gift ideas and use some of them for your own gift giving! I'll start giving the presents on December 12th so that he gets the last present on December 23rd, then has Christmas eve in between before he gets his other presents on Christmas day. Happy Holidays!