Graduation gift

Need gifts for 10 of your kids friends that are graduating this year? Skip the weiner dog with marker for all the friends to sign, that’s been done before. Instead, get the grad something practical. For the college bound: a laundry basket, some soap and a $x bill for quarters. Or…grab some of the ‘hershey’s kisses’ from the gourmet part of the candy aisle (they now have them with the little flags that ALL say ‘congratulations’) and order a coffee mug (conveniently printed with a picture of the whole gang or best buds-if they will be parting ways) from a mega-store’s website. You can easily customize with up to 15 pictures on some of the sites. If it’s for your own kid, DON’T write ‘love mom’ on it, but feel free to add a picture of the family pet! Toss the candy in the mug, tuck in a plain bag, and you’re done. Take the money you’d save on a ‘congrats 2009’ bag and put it in the cup or use it to buy a funny card ‘from’ the younger sibling.

Be sure to get a travel cup for the ones commuting to work and a regular ‘ol mug for those who will have time to leisurely drink chug a mug before they leave their college apartment. And, if you’re related to the kid, add some cash or gift certificates to the bookstore where they will attend school or restaurants in the college town. Let them pick out their own t-shirt or pay down their textbooks, they’re expensive.

More savers: combine parties for friends at your church, where families and friends can gather and say goodbye. Split the cost of a cake with the other family, or commit to each bringing a cake for your own guests. Do some punch and leave it at that. Your grad is going to want to celebrate freedom, and visit all their friends’ parties. (We personally went by and flipped the bird to the school, as if the school cared.) Buy ONE pack of napkins (8 ct) that say 2009, and one bag of confetti for the cake table. Layers the napkins with plain white ones (or school colors). Skip the confetti if you’ve got a boy or a girl that’s not sentimental. Everything else is just there to make you spend money!

This year, we have one high schooler and one grade schooler graduating, and basically one a year from here until forever. By the time the last one is out of grade school, the rest will be graduating from high school.

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