Adults. They too need fun things for the holidays.
From sweet treats to things on wheels, some ideas to please a kid at heart this holiday season:
The Shakespeare Game: This bard-in-a-box extravaganza lets players collect characters and race through theaters across London. The idea is to put on as many plays as possible before others “steal your ideas, burn down your theaters or spread the plague!” The winner makes the most money at the box office and is the fastest to fame and fame. $35.
Wordle: The party game. Did you see it coming? Hasbro and The New York Times have made the daily treat Get-it-in-six a board game. Each round, a player chosen as the host writes a five-letter word. Others have to figure it out in, you guessed it, six tries, competing to do it in the minimum number of attempts. Dry erase boards and familiar color coding are used. $19.99.
Paco Sako: This chess variant was originally Kickstarted by Felix Albers, the Dutch father who created it. Played on an ordinary chessboard with ordinary chess pieces, there are unions that look like hugs and the winner “kisses” the opponent’s king, instead of capturing it. The pieces move in the same way as in chess but generally do not leave the board. Still don’t understand? Check out the reviews and handy tips before you spend $49.99.
Dylan’s Candy Bar is a sweet and indulgent playground all year round, and especially during the holidays. The company’s clear plastic tackle boxes offer a little something for everyone. There’s one for $125 full of festive, shiny candies. Another for $85 is a trip down memory lane for baby boomers with Zots, Mallo Cups, Chick-O-Sticks and more. Millennials have their own sour treat for the same price.
Got a licorice lover? Danish confectionery Lakrids by Bulow has brought back its Advent calendar filled with 24 days of chocolate-covered licorice. I repeat. Chocolate covered licorice, with flavors like raspberry and salted caramel. The goodness comes in a sleek black and white packaging design. $55.
A prize baseball card. A valuable stamp or coin. Figurines, vintage kitchen utensils. Surely you know at least one gift recipient with a collection of some sort. Nope? So follow the path of TikTok and embrace the minis. They’re all over those round wrapped eggs and other mystery containers (you never know which mini in a set you’ll get). For the truly obsessed, a company is making minis within minis with beloved candy brands. These are not actually edible. $7.99.
For beer lovers, Etsy seller Pretentious Beer Glass offers four mouth-blown Pilsner glasses for $162.
Big Little People fan alert: Fisher Price has a set of six collectible figures from the hit ‘Ted Lasso’. The whole gang is here: Ted Lasso, Rebecca Welton, Keeley Jones, Coach Beard, Roy Kent and Sam Obisanya for a touch of toy nostalgia. $29.97.
Feeding the taste of nostalgia, Build-a-Bear launched “The Bear Cave” line of teddy bears and other characters having champagne, cocktails and beer. All are under $60.
Lite Brite sells a range of 50s and 60s pop art sets intended to be hung on the wall after they have been created. They are in the $100 range. Ho-ho-ho.
American icon Schwinn makes something called the Shuffle Deluxe Scooter. It has two wheels and a bicycle-like handlebar, but maintains scooter status with a nostalgic wooden running board. With crutch. $249. Razor recently launched the Razor icon. It’s bigger, faster and electric.
If scooters aren’t how your gifts ride, try a longboard. They are everywhere. Koastals are plentiful and come in a range of prices and designs. They are handcrafted in Southern California. From $99 to $280. Buy complete or customize.
At $129.99 per year, the BroadwayHD streaming service offers full-length plays and musicals, including exclusive live streams. This is an unlimited, on-demand library of over 300 theater productions from Broadway, the West End and beyond. Some ballets and concerts too. Not looking to spend that much? Buy a month or two at $11.99 each.
Or you can pick up an original cast recording of a favorite musical or a biography of a theater legend. “Free for All: Joe Papp, The Public, and the Greatest Theater Story Ever Told” by Kenneth Turan and Papp himself holds up. It’s been out since 2009, so shop around for a good price.
Do you find anything unusual? Search and search for a special bottle. There are too many variables and options for too many palates to make a solid recommendation, but special splurges abound. Consider the Garrison Brothers distillery for bourbon. It has a price range.
Look for “premier cru” or “grand cru” on champagne labels noting the best vineyards, such as in the Krug Grande Cuvée Brut. It’s in the $180 range. Are you a wine lover? How about the 2019 Insignia from Joseph Phelps Vineyards in Napa Valley. $330.
For some reason, considering every Lego set and every TV show in the country, people are skimming for the 1,164-piece Lego set based on Emmy-winning “The Office.” It’s Dunder Mifflin down to the finest detail and includes 15 minifigures of the series’ main characters. A dozen characters have two facial expressions when the head is turned. Classic scenes come to life in Jim’s Teapot, Michael’s World’s Best Boss Mug and Dwight’s Jell-O Stapler. $119.99.
Plenty of big kids sets are out there if this one doesn’t. Among the Lego Ideas sets: a manual typewriter, the “Seinfeld” apartment set, and a shout out to “The Flintstones.”
Do you remember the hygge cozy phenomenon? Well, the Scandinavian concept of friluftsliv (roughly FREE-lofts-leeve) is another spreading Nordic secret. It’s the idea of enjoying slow nature and being kind to the Earth. Swedish-American Linda Akeson McGurk has written a book, “The Outdoor Life”, sharing the 10 principles of friluftsliv. She explains how to establish a more meaningful relationship with the great outdoors. $20.
Searches for all things sport chic, mountain style, are on the rise on Etsy, said handmade market trends expert Dayna Isom Johnson. Sellers there, and their buyers, “look to the mountains and snow-capped peaks for inspiration,” she said. This includes people looking for vintage ski gear.
A cheaper alternative to fuel the outdoor trend? An Etsy seller, Cai Cai Handmade, offers mountain beeswax and soy candles that can be customized by color and scent, including pine forest.
For even more friluftsliv a woman’s gift, pack some Moment mints by MotherBar. They are almost 100% organic and each contain 40mg of full-spectrum CBD, as well as Szechuan flower, peppermint and Bulgarian rose. $65 for 10. Recommended to start with one at a time, but who counts. Packaging and marketing are gender specific.
Know someone who needs a little help shedding their pandemic funk?
Offer a deck of affirmations and good vibes cards. Two sisters, Shanna Cancino and Cherish Wilson, created The Vibe Check Deck of 52 cards with prompts to help people straighten out. Such as: “Hug someone for 20 seconds” and “Explore your senses. Name five things you see, four things you feel, three things you hear, two things you smell, one thing you taste. You don’t feel them? How about: “Send a positive wish to your water and drink.” Surely the recipient of your gift will at least smile, ironically or otherwise. $29.99.
There are many tarot decks. For starters, Clarkson Potter sells “Illuminated: A Journal for Your Tarot Practice.” It offers ways to engage more meaningfully with a deck and to record observations and thoughts. $16.
Switch to pickleball, Jazzminton Sport is on your heels. It is an indoor-outdoor game played with paddles and birdies and a single net with a horizontal cutout. There are no borders. No court is required. Setup is simple. Two people are playing. Simply beat the birdie back and forth across the hole until the winner reaches an agreed number of points. $199.99.
If one net isn’t enough, go for four with Crossnet. It’s a four-box volleyball game for indoors, outdoors, on sand or concrete, in water or on grass. The game is, uh, complicated. In a nutshell: Four people stand up or split into teams of two. The game revolves around one hit per return on four nets until the ball hits the ground or goes out of bounds. People are turned inward and outward. The height of the net is adjustable. $149.99 at Crossnetgame.com.