Friday, October 30, 2009

Gift Baskets for teachers!

Good morning y'all. This year, Lallie has 4 different teachers since she's an all day student. She loves all of them greatly and they are all wonderful people. They are kind, caring, attentive, well-educated, loving people who really care about these children. My two year old is nearly potty-trained, covers her mouth when she coughs, behaves well in public, picks up all her toys and activities while singing the "clean up" song. I owe a lot of her attitude and skills to her teachers. They ought to be thanked properly.

The only issue, there are 4 of them. So, I'm trying to find inexpensive ways to make sure all of them are taken care of, in the same value but really says thank you.

I went to Michael's yesterday and picked up four baskets at 50% off (total of $10.00). I will decorate them myself with my stash of ribbon, paint etc. I know one of them will have a painted wine glass that Lis Loves tutored us on the other day in her blog. She's a wine drinker (and a fellow JL, so I know her a little better). I think it'll say "Mommy Juice." One of her other teachers is pregnant with her second child (do not yet know the sex). The third is a grandmother and the fourth is a younger 20-something college grad without kids or husband. A wide variety of personalities here!

I don't want to do baked goods - I am not a chef and I think it's a little impersonal to buy pre-made baked items for something like this. I'm thinking ornaments, nail care accessories, starbucks gift certificates. I don't know, I'm at a loss. What do you mommy's think? I really don't know where to go with this!

I would love to know what my Mother-In-Law thinks! She was a teacher for 30 years. I'll have to give her a call and discuss the dos-&-don'ts of teachers gifts!


  1. Ah, teacher's every Mom's worst nightmare (at least it's mine!).

    I, too, try to be crafty & frugal because when you're having to buy 4 or more gifts it gets pretty $$$!

    One year, I bought initial mugs from Anthropology & made home-made hot chocolate mix and put it in a pretty cellophane baggie. The mugs were $6 and the ingredients were minimal and made plenty of hot chocolate mix.

    I have painted ornaments before, too. That was actually last year's gift...I'll have to drag up the blog post & tweet it to you.

    I've gone the Bath & Body Works route before, the Barnes & Noble gift card route before, the Panera Bread gift card route before...but I just feel that something homemade is so much more personable and meaningful.

    I haven't even begun to think about teacher gifts this year. Actually, wait, I have. QVC (of all places!) had a set of 6 musical snow globes that come individually bagged and ready to give as presents and the cost was about $30...I'm on the fence about that.

    Good luck...let me know what you decide to do!

  2. Wine is always a good choice!

    Pancake mix etc?

    I like the mugs and hot choc idea!

  3. I'm the daughter of two educators and have reaped the benefits of their Christmas gifts for years! I always enjoyed the baked goods and I know they always liked gift cards. I would say no to holiday decor items... everyone has their own taste. I think school/office supplies like cool pens or post-its would be great, too. Let us know what you decide.

  4. You are so sweet to make them all something! My bff was a teacher for years and she liked gift cards because she would use them to buy other presents but...she also loved the personalized stuff too. I have a hard time picking stuff for other people unless I know what they love. Thank you for your comment. I was laughing because I was thinking the same thing--guess she'll never guest blog for me again!!! You are tops. xoxo


  5. OK... you don't want to hear this, but I am a teacher (4th grade), so I do have an opinion! :)

    Going in with a few other families and purchasing a class gift is wonderful. Maybe it is not extremely personable from your end, but the teacher can get exactly what she needs or wants.

    A few years ago we built a new home. We had the staple landscaping plants but were in dire need of some things. My room mother asked for suggestions for a class gift. I told her of my predicament. Long story short: I have a lovely crepe myrtle outside of my breakfast room that my students gave me. Now that's personable!

    These would be "Please not this!" gifts:

    ~snow globes (Michelle, get off the fence on that one :)
    ~lotions (only if you don't know her style or preference)

    These would be "Please, thank you!" gifts:

    ~Homemade baked goods
    ~gift cert to spa (even small amount as it would encourage her to go even if she had to spend a little of her own money)
    ~group/class gifts or gift certificates
    ~monogrammed note cards (if she was raised right, you'll see your gift sent back to your child!)

    When all else fails, ASK HER!!! If she "hems and haws", then threaten her with one of those awful "Born to Teach" t-shirts. She'll appreciate your thoughtfulness in wanting to know what she wants.

  6. As a teacher, I appreciate any gift I receive. The fact that a family took the time to think of me is such a gift. The only suggestion I can offer is to be careful with anything that has a scent. Many people {not just teachers} have allergies and some items, such as candles or lotions, can be very powerful to the point of making people ill feeling.


  7. Bevysblog and Jo and other teachers:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you....hearing from the teachers helps tremendously!! Your opinions are very important here! So thank you.

    And Jo, I thought about the scented stuff, but very good point, not everyone can handle scented things.

    Thank you to everyone, mommies and teachers alike. This is very helpful!

    xoxo Jennifer

  8. Hope I didn't sound too horrible! Please know that EVERY child gets the most heartfelt and sincere thank you.

    In fact, the most precious gift I eve received were from a child whose parents were Mexican immigrants and spoke no English at all. They bought me these paste diamond dangle earrings and necklace. I was certain that they cost no more than a few dollars. I love that gift more than ANY other gift I have ever received. In fact, I wore those earrings all Christmas and even to midnight service on Christmas Eve.

  9. You got a lot of great ideas. I have started doing the gift card idea- starbucks, Michaels, target, a local restaurant. I have done the bath and body works thing in the past but I also agree about the scent - if you don't know them that well you may get them a scent that's not a good one for them. I think the one that is expecting might like a Babies r us gift card -I know I would.

    It seems to get harder each year-trying to be creative & original. I haven't decided if I want to be the mom/child that always gives the teachers XXX each year, you know what I mean?

  10. I just found your blog today! I'm a teacher and I have received everything from nothing to $100 cash! Honestly I do prefer a gift card or something that can be used over something that I have for awhile. It gets tricky to find places for things! Another good thing is to get them something they can use but then maybe something they can use in the classroom too like books, supplies, or some other wish list item. I like the idea of a class/group gift too it can mean more bang for your buck! Good luck!

  11. Everyone, you all have been SO helpful! I'm planning on doing several of these things you all have suggested. I will do a post when I'm finished. I really feel this is such an important gift. These teachers take care of my child every single day and are shaping her to be a great person. This means more to me than any ole tuition! So, I really want to thank them properly. Unfortunately, some feel it's a burden, i feel it is an extra way to say thanks to those that are making such an impact. (and no Bevy, you did not sound horrible! I wanted to hear from teachers and my teacher friends gave such great insight). Thank you all so much!!