Stress during the holidays. It is such a common problem there are numerous articles and Pinterest posts about the condition and I understand. I wish I could say it is a crazy problem but there is some basis for trying to balance finances while trying to show someone how much you care for them (without overdoing it).
In my family, we figured out a few Christmases ago that our goal was to give and receive gifts that were useful. This might seem like a duh moment, but in truth, this meant trading in surprises and numerous slightly-useful material gifts for things that we knew we were going to use or a gift card for a store we spend a lot of time in: Anthropologie for Mom, Amazon for Dad, REI for Jordy, and Safeway for Darby. We stopped avoiding the obvious gift and instead embraced the idea that the person that will never get the wrong gift for someone is themselves.
So without further ado, here are 7 stocking stuffers for volleyballers (that don't suck) cheers to the holidays xoxo
7. A bag of almonds
This comes straight from nutritionist & registered dietitian nutritionist Shavawn Forester because athletes like to eat and the best thing you can do to help them is give them good fuel. Perfect for road trips or a snack before/after practice. (Don't worry, if you or your athlete is not a fan of nuts there will be other foody gifts below)
This snack cost between $6 and $12 at the grocery store and I will admit I am a fan of the roasted salted almonds but if you are looking to maximize nutritional value, opt for raw.
6. A notebook/sketchbook
When I first started volleyball, that was my artistic outlet, but as my level and the level of the competition rose, I occasionally needed another outlet to take my mind off my game. I never really became a writer (unless you count this, then I guess I kinda have opened up to the written word) but I did occasionally sketch and eventually took a few art and ceramics (clay molding) classes in high school. These experiences of trying to become the next great artist really showed me how much work it takes to be great and how fortunate I was to be introduced to a sport that really satisfied my soul and pushed me to greatness every time I stepped on the court. P.S. you might want to pick up a pack of colored pencils or an erasable pen so if your young athlete does get the creative urge it will be easy for them to release it onto paper.
5. A gift card
Oops is that too predictable? I don't care! It is the most perfect gift no matter what your inner gift-giver is saying, the amount doesn't matter!
A couple ideas are:
- Whole foods/Safeway/Fred Myers/ other grocery store (hello, food)
- Amazon (aka literally the store that has everything)
- Walmart (wal((ls) of everything you will ever need) mart)
- Gas Station (for the young driver)
- REI (for the outdoorsy adventurer)
- Victoria Secret (for the girl that needs some underwear)
- Lululemon or Alo Yoga (for the legging lover)
- Barnes and Nobles (for the reader)
- Starbucks/Dutch Bros (for the coffee lover)
- Blue Apron (for the athlete that is away from home and needs food)
- Netflix (for the 0 or 100 athlete)
4. Dried apple rings
This is another recommendation from our RDN Shavawn Forester so we can trust that she is leading us in the right direction. You do have to keep an eye out for added sugar in dried fruit but in most bulk sections, if they have "normal" dried apples, then they usually have an "added-sugar-free version." Or if you are lucky they only have the sugar-free version because yummmmmm.
Have that one movie you know they've been wanting to see or is the seasonal ice rink open? Get tickets for the whole family or just for them and a couple of their friends. Just because they are athletes doesn't mean they can't pretend to be normal sometimes. Plus they get to breakout some of those normal clothes that are in the back of their closet and show off those athlete muscles.
A few movies to check out:
- Moana (for the animated Disney movie lover)
- Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (for the Harry Potter lover)
- Rogue One (for the Star Wars lover)
- Collateral Beauty (for the Will Smith enthusiast)
- Believe (for the Christmas movie lover)
- The Circle (for the Emma Watson lover)
The other kind of present. Yes, I do need to get a little sentimental because it is the holidays. It is the most wonderful time of the year and something you can give your loved ones is the opportunity to make memories. Cuddle up on the couches and bring out the deck of cards. Make dinner together or a holiday dessert. The chance to spend time together is not always going to be there so don't be fooled into thinking the business or anything else is more important than family. Although it is nice to receive presents, it is incredibly empowering to give someone your time and attention and connect in a way that can strengthen your relationship for weeks and months to come.
1. Pick the family's next vacation
This is a silly unexpected way for parents/guardians to share power with their athletes! Let's be real, as fun as it is to know the layout of five different convention centers, no matter how the season turns out it is nice to have a beautiful place to look forward to going! If your budget is a little tight right now then opt for a stay-vacation instead and plan on spending a night or two at a hotel in town and/or do all the touristy things that you usual scoff at others for doing. Planning early allows you to get the cheapest prices on flights, hotels, trains, and most other funtivities. If you are a little strapped for time then think of a way to incorporate a mini-vacation while at a volleyball tournament. The good news about tournaments is that they are usual in big cities where there is a lot to do. Plan with your athlete a time when you can steal them away from their team and see the sights! There are many different ways to approach this gift so feel free to get creative.
So that is 7 Stocking Stuffers for Volleyballer (that don't suck) they are a little unorthodox and a little predictable, but they are all useful.
Happy Holidays from the Silver State VolleyBlog and the rest of the Silver State Athletic Center family xoxo