For many of my friends and family, the carefree spending and impulse purchases of the last few years will not be a part of their holiday this year. Many are cutting back on the number of toys they are giving their children and on the number of gifts they give to each other. And they are looking for gifts that have a lasting impact. They are looking for gifts that have special meaning rather than just a high price tag or a fancy gadget.
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My favorite gift this year that I think falls into this category is AeroGrow’s indoor gardening appliances. I found the AeroGarden http://www.aerogrow.com online this year while looking for a gift to give a friend of mine that is a long-time gardener. When the winter months come around, she always bemoans the fact that she cannot get out into her garden. With the AeroGarden, she doesn’t have to wait for spring to appear, she can garden all year-round right in her own kitchen.
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AeroGrow touts its product as “The World’s First Kitchen Garden Appliance”, but I think that makes it sound like something you stick under your kitchen sink. In fact, the AeroGarden sits right on your countertop. You can fill it with herbs, flowers, vegetables or greens. There’s a grow light on the AeroGarden that turns it on and off automatically so you can place the garden anywhere you like, and it will still grow. And it only takes a few minutes to set up, so there’s no impossible set of directions to follow or four hours needed to get this gift up and running.
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The best part about the AeroGarden is that it truly is the perfect gift for all the people on my list this year. Amy, who likes to cook, will absolutely love having fresh herbs right on her countertop. Doug, who we all tease about his black thumb, will appreciate how easy it is to set up and grow things. And Kate, my environmentalist friend, will appreciate the fact that this is a long-lasting gift – no waste or pollution to think of, and yields hundreds of dollars of herbs.
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The only thing I do not like about this product is that I did not discover it for my grandmother. She lived in an assisted living home, and spent much of her time in her own room. Since flowers are proven to increase happiness and overall emotional wellness, this would have been the perfect gift for her. And the products are so small that they do not take up a lot of space, which is important to the elderly in these situations.
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So this year, I plan to give a gift that brings year-round joy to those people on my holiday list. No fancy gadgets, no fancy boxes; just a lovely little AeroGarden that provides for flowers, herbs, vegetables or greens. It’s a gift that will make my friends and family smile everyday and think of me. What more could you ask for?