Christmas typically creates visions of family dinners and gift-giving festivities. Although the holiday images might be traditional, the families no longer are. According to Pew Research, 52 percent of people under the age of 30 have at least one step relative. For those with a more-the-merrier mentality, the “step” factor might simply mean more love and more gifts to go around. For others, though, it can create awkwardness.
Even if your stepfather recognizes your biological parents are first in line when it comes to the “good” gifts, your holiday gift to him can be more than the token tie or plastic fish that sings Jimmy Buffet. It might seem like an insurmountable task to find a thoughtful gift he’ll like, but if you put even a small amount of thought into it, you can come up with a holiday gift for your stepdad that won’t appear to have been picked up last minute at a convenience store.
While neckties have the stigma of being thoughtless gifts, for some stepdads and dads who actually wear them on a regular basis, a couple of ties in colors that compliment his favorite suits can be a solid gift. If you prefer to think outside that box, you can still get your stepdad a thoughtful gift to accessorize his wardrobe.
A nice leather belt or a pair of sunglasses can be tasteful choices for stepdads. If you opt for the shades, don’t just snag a pair off the no-name rack at the gas station and present them to him in a brown paper bag. Instead, talk to Mom, and see if he’s had his eye on any particular pair or brand, and gift wrap them in a box.
Give your stepdad a gift he can use for his favorite sport or hobby. The golfing stepdad will appreciate monogrammed golf balls and club head covers, boxes of tees or personalized link toppers, affordable at just $49.95 at Red Envelope. The stepdad who fancies himself a gourmet chef (even if it’s limited to the gas grill) will be dying to try out new grilling tools or to throw on a “Kiss the Cook” apron.
Some stepdads might not be sports fanatics or hobbyists, but everyone has a favorite band or favorite genre of music. Whether it’s bluegrass, jazz or classic rock, you should be able to find a boxed set of tunes that will please him, or you can put together your own boxed set from a combination of favorites.
If your stepdad’s passion is geared towards gadgets, you’ll have no problems finding devices, doohickeys and doodads that appeal to his obsession. From smart watches to waterproof Bluetooth shower speakers, there is no end to the unique toys for bigger boys available just in time for Christmas shopping.
Visit Macy’s house wares department for the gadget stepdad who is also a gourmet chef. Useful items such as Keurig single-cup coffee makers start at just $149.99, but that’s before holiday sale discounts. If you have your heart set on getting stepdad a top-of-the-line gadget, get your siblings to pool their money and go in on it with you.
For some stepparents, just having the “step” in front of the title makes them feel uneasy, but others take on the identity and the job with pride and aplomb. Those are the stepdads who will get a kick out of getting the “I am the Step-Father” t-shirt, sale-priced at $26.99, or the “World’s Greatest Step-Dad” oversized coffee mug for only $13.99 at Cafe Press.
The rule for these types of gifts is to know your recipient. If you aren’t 100 percent sure your stepdad will love it, then go with a different gift that will be less likely to offend.
Do you have any other gift ideas? Please share them in the Comments. Thank you.