Father’s Day presents get old and boring. Year after year, how can you “up the anti”? You can buy or create a unique Father’s Day gift for the man in your life. There are always the old standbys, but try some of these more unique options as presents. You may just give your dad a smile and a memory that he’ll cherish forever.
Give dad the gift of adventure! In fact, it’s the memories he’s making that are most important.
Whether dad is near or far, whether you can join him or not, plan on getting him:
- a round of mini golf
- movie tickets
- concert tickets (try stubhub)
- admission to seasonal events like haunted hay rides or admission to an orchard or corn maze (check his local newspaper online, his local t.v. or radio station)
- gift certificate to laser tag
- a gift certificate for a few rounds of paint ball
- admission to an art, science or train museum
- tickets to an area attraction: like a local amusement park or fair, heritage centers, civil war reenactments, tractor races
Tip: If your budget is low or you want to stretch your money to give dad multiple certificates, his local radio stations or the marketing/advertising websites in his area may offer half-off or discounted certificates. Many phone-books or newspapers contain coupons or promo codes, too.
If dad is a shy guy, he’s home-bound, or your own budget is really tight, try to create an experience for him. If you’re technically-skilled and crafty –meaning you’re one of those talented people that can make more with less — make him a mini golf course in his backyard. Buy a few mini golf clubs, tees and balls from a rummage sale or Goodwill.
Create a movie theater-like experience for him by borrowing a projector and screen (ask your local community center, library or school if they allow rentals) in his own living room complete with popcorn.
You get the jist, now? Overload those search engines looking for the most awesome adventure ideas or prices. Otherwise, let your creative juices flow, flow, flow!
Work Day or Weekend
If you can, head on over for a work day. Never underestimate the power of a great work day. (This will probably only work if your father is not a complete control-freak, that is)! Think of how you’ll be helping your father knock out some of those major chores like chopping up some firewood, rebuilding the deck or just cleaning up the yard all at once. Try to get your spouse or significant other, siblings, children and other grandchildren to help out, too.
Plan for the weather. If you can’t do outside work, have a plan for work to do inside. If your family members all live pretty close, then pick a date for inclement weather.
Before showing up, ask dad what he wants or needs done so you know if you or your helpful family members need to bring any extra tools like rakes, shovels, axes, cleaners, power washers, work gloves, safety glasses, paintbrushes, chainsaws, etc. This will help aid in your organization of the project day and help you understand what type of time frame your workers need to be prepared for. Make a list on poster board to hang up on the day of the event so everyone has a clear understanding of what projects need to be done, including adding the most important at the top of the list.
So that part of your workforce doesn’t need to stop in the middle of the work to prepare lunch for a crowd, plan a potluck lunch where everyone is in charge of bringing something. Assign different family members or groups different items including main dishes, side dishes, condiments, ice, drinks, cups, utensils, serving utensils, cups and plates. Or, let everyone know ahead of time that you’re planning on splurging for pizza delivery, and divide the cost among those present.
Hard-worked family members can really get on each others’ nerves especially in uncomfortable working conditions. Don’t expect to fix everything in one day as everyone will want to hang out with dad a bit, too. If one afternoon is all you have to help out, that’s all you have. Do what you can. Try to remember that you’re gathered together for your father on his day. Let bygones be bygones, and if you don’t have anything nice to say to your fellow workers, shove your iPod earphones in your ears and whistle while you work.
What He REALLY Needs
If dad’s wallet is tight in these difficult economic times, there are ways to give him a gift that won’t bruise his ego or leave him offended. (And, it shouldn’t, because everyone needs a little help sometimes!)
Give him a gas card or gift card to his preferred hardware store like Lowes, Fleet Farm or Ace Hardware. Sure, these might sound like impersonal gifts or boring standbys, but they’re the things that will drain dads’ budgets quickly.
Listen closely. If dad’s still doing financially well, but he’s starting to have to cut out the extras, take note. If your muscle man would be lost without his gym membership or trip to his favorite restaurant, think about putting your gift money toward that. Maybe dad’s doctor has just made him aware that he needs to change his eating habits, So, help him out with a week of healthy, homemade freezer meals. (The best gifts are homemade!)
With a little elbow grease and creativity, you can make dad his own Italian herb garden! If he doesn’t mind caring for a few plants and has a deck or the counter space for it, he’ll probably dig it!
Just follow this idea on HGTV. To summarize, get empty tin cans out of the recycling, and drill holes in them. Add pebbles at the bottom for drainage, and shovel in some potting soil. Plant herbs like rosemary, thyme, oregano, parsley and basil into the cans. Water immediately. Printable herb labels and a main label that declares “Buon Apetito” are available at the HGTV site. Place the cans on a clay (terra cotta) saucer. Wrap it all in a manly-patterned ribbon. Fill the remaining areas of the saucer with river rocks for a nice touch. Plop a fork in one of the plants, and add the “Buon Apetito” label in-between its tines.
Tip: Read my article, “My Italian Herb Garden Pinterest Idea that Didn’t Quite Turn Out” for extra tips and potential pitfalls. Yeah, I’m obviously not perfect!
To put a different spin on the Italian herb garden, call it a Grilling Garden! Add or substitute sage into the mix of herbs. Instead of placing scissors and twine in an empty can, place a rolled-up apron or barbecue mitt in its stead. Add an empty, long-necked barbecue sauce bottle to the saucer with a grilling fork or new grill brush placed in it.
What will you do for dad this Father’s Day? Tell me below about what you’re planning or even how it went!