Sure, she’ll appreciate that funny card you picked out on your way to work, and probably those clearance carnations that you ordered last-minute online. But this year, send her something she’ll really appreciate: creativity, with a gift that lets her know how well you know her!
1. A time capsule. Put together a little care package with goodies and mementos from the year she was born. Is she a child of the ’80s? Troll your local thrift store for a fanny pack to hold the loot (if it happens to be New Kids On the Block, even better). Put Michael Jackson’s Thriller, some fingerless gloves, and neon temporary hair dye inside. A spoon ring and some jelly bracelets would go nicely, too. Then zip it up and send it her way!
2. A stock. As much as you love her, you’re probably not rolling in enough dough to buy her that necklace from Tiffany’s or the latest Louis Vuitton handbag. But that doesn’t mean she can’t have a little piece of the pie, anyway! Buy her a stock or two in her favorite company and then make your own little certificate of ownership to send. E-Trade lets you buy individual stocks (just watch out for the $12.99 commission that comes with each purchase). Make it a tradition to buy her a few stocks a year and before you know it, she’ll be a legitimate shareholder!
3. A donation. Choose a cause that’s near and dear to her and then make a donation in her name. Did she lose a family member to cancer? Check out The American Cancer Society or Susan G. Komen for the Cure. Is she so much of a cat fanatic that you tease her about becoming a cat lady someday? Donate to The Humane Society or Big Cat Rescue. Charity Navigator lists most charities and lets you search by name or cause to find an organization that’s right for your friend. It’s a heartfelt gift that you can both feel good about.
4. A cleanse. Let’s be honest, those cupcakes you sent her last year were delicious…but she was quietly annoyed with you for derailing her diet. This year, send her the gift of health — just in time for bikini season! — with a cleanse. You can find the prepackaged variety at Whole Foods (the 365 7-Day Quick Cleanse is under $20). Or, watch for discounts on juice cleanses on Groupon and Living Social and sign her up for a 3-day supply. They’ll deliver the goodness right to her door and she’ll be a happy and healthy birthday girl, indeed.
5. A live plant. Like we said, when it comes to your bestie, flowers are lame. But a live indoor plant? Cool — and sustainable. Browse the gorgeous orchid, lily, and palm plants at Floral Planet for a little something to brighten her office or living room. Unlike regular flowers, a live plant won’t die after a week (well, as long as she waters it!) so she’ll have it to enjoy and freshen up her space year-round.