Thank you for all of the love and support this little corner of the internet has received over the past several years. As friends and family members were getting married, their weddings fueled the inspiration for this blog. But as seasons of life change, my focus, along with those nearest and dearest, shifted away from the wedding planning stage and I began to neglect this blog.

I have decided to indefinitely retire Calligraphy by Shannon in an effort to pour my attention into my lifestyle blog The Scribble Pad where I will be merging past and future inspiration boards and parties. You will still be able to place orders for calligraphy, custom invitations, and hand stamped items through my etsy shop. And as always, you can stay in touch with me under my moniker, The Scribble Pad on my blog, etsy shop, facebook, and even twitter! I look forward to sharing this new adventure with you.

6th Day of Christmas: Gifts

Gift Giving in Recession (oh the ugly "R" word - I know we don't want to think about it, but budgets dictate that we must!)

Here are a slew of clever ideas that may help you finish strong during these last few days of holiday shopping without busting your budget or looking like you went cheap this year:

For the Eco-Chic:

Buy them David Bach's book, "Go Green, Live Rich" and supply them with their very first Smart Strip, a power strip that helps save energy/money by limiting circuit flow when items are not in use. (The Smart Strip was mentioned in the book and one of the 50 ways to save money while saving the planet.)

For your Global Warrior:

Visit Ten Thousand Villages. There is really no better way to explain this site than to send you there and have you browse! (hint: they do wedding registries too!)

For your Luxury-Lovers:

Check out Red Envelope's "Gifts under $50" or Pottery Barn's "Gifts Under $25" Two of my favorite picks from these lists are the Channel-Quilted Cosmetic Bags (PB) and Monogrammed Tumblers (RE)
(hint: they both do wedding registries!)

For the Coffee-Fiend:

Try Starbucks from Costco! Who knew right? But you can get loads of "designer" coffee for practically half the price.

You can also try a wide variety of Fair Trade Coffees from local shops near you. Click here to find who sells Fair Trade Coffee near you!

For the Musically Inclined:

Compile a great playlist and burn it to a CD. It could be themed (a holiday collection, perhaps) or it could reflect the personality of the person for whom it is intended (indie rock, boy bands, hard-to-find live performances). This doesn’t have to be boring. Check out this HP program to print creative labels and customized album cases to give this gift a real bit of flair!

For the Talented and Sentimental:

Nothing says personalized like a homemade gift. If you can knit, sew, crochet, decoupage, paint, frame, or woodwork, consider using that talent to produce a few gifts for your friends or family. A scarf might be a rather boring gift under normal circumstances, but that completely changes when you tell them that you made it specifically for them. This could also be a great opportunity for you to try something new, like a new stitch or artistic technique that you’ve always wanted to try.

If you aren't so crafty but are giving to someone who is, check out the growing handmade/homemade gifts movement at Buy Handmade. Another great resource for uniquely made gifts: Etsy. Or maybe even do a bit of browsing on Etsy to get your creative juices flowing!

For the Super Chef:

Check out Sur La Table's ultimate Gift Shops for every category of cook or kitchen. If you a buying a gift for me, I will accept anything and everything from here, in case you were wondering. (hint: they do wedding registries too!)

For the Practical:

It might seem like a holdover from your youth, but a stack of IOUs or "love coupons" is a wonderful gift idea. Guaranteeing that you will help someone tackle a distasteful task or one they don’t feel equipped to handle can be a real pick-me-up in the busy holiday season. Or it can be something more simple like a coffee date or back rub. For more creative love coupon ideas click: here!
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