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19 Sentimental Gifts For Your Family, Friend, or Lover This Holiday Season

The act of giving is always a joy, especially if genuine intentions are behind it. But this holiday season, what do you give the person you love the most? Often, the hardest part of gift-giving is not staying in budget, but showing people how much they truly mean to you. Fortunately, there are ways to say “you mean the world to me” without breaking the bank or coming off as cheesy and insincere.

Here’s a list of sentimental gifts that your beloved family member, lover, or friend will love to open on Christmas day.

A book to map out your family tree.


As parents age and family members move away, it’s crucial to keep a record of how much the family has grown over the years. Any family member would love to get a family tree book because it’s as personal as you can get. Retails at $20 on

Get your DNA tested.

Living DNA

Speaking of personal gifts…I had the amazing experience of finding out my DNA breakdown and was able to share with my parents more insight about our roots than they have ever known. So you can either give your parents the results or allow them to take the test. There are great services available for that. Retails $59 on and $79 on Living DNA.

Frame a throwback picture.

Courtesy of Araceli Cruz

One thing families love doing is looking at old photos. Imagine the sight of giving your mom or dad (or anyone) an enlarged replica of an old picture, matted, and nicely framed. Priceless! It’s so easy to scan an image and enlarge, but if you don’t want to do it yourself at an Office Depot, there are lots of photo imaging services online.

Learn to play their favorite song on an instrument.


This year I took piano lessons just so I could play a tune for my husband. It’s quite affordable to take a 30-minute lesson once a week, and the progress of it all is so worth it, even if you don’t sound like Mozart.

Plant a tree in their name.


We know climate change is real, and while it may seem almost impossible to remedy this problem, there is a nice gesture you can do for a loved one. Planting a tree in their name is a gift that keeps on giving. Retails for $9.99 at Living Tribute.

Rent out an entire movie theater and watch their favorite movie.


You don’t have to live in a mansion to experience the luxury of a private theater. It’s not that expensive either. If you split the cost with family and/or friends, the price is even better.

Buy high art at a low price.

Instagram @fridakahlo

Let’s be real for a second, we can’t afford an authentic Frida Kahlo painting (do you have $12 million?). But what you can do is buy a printed poster of a beautiful work of art and have it framed. At, you can find your favorite artwork by Frida or anyone and buy a print for as low as $10!

Make a donation to their favorite charity in their name.

Instagram @godsvisionfoundation

Nothing feels quite as good as helping those in need, but one thing that might feel even better is helping them in the name of your loved one. Give away that credit you don’t need. Make someone else’s heart burst with happiness while you’re at it.

Give them a Five Minute Journal.

Instagram @5minutejournal

It’s good to start the new year feeling invigorated and ready to take on the world, but how? The Five Minute Journal can help you get there. If you know someone who has the enthusiasm to reenergize their life but doesn’t understand how to get to the finish line, the Five Minute journals can help.

As one reviewer said: “The Five Minute Journal condenses hundreds of positive psychology articles, books, and research into a structured process of 5 daily questions that focus your attention on gratitude, setting direction for making your day great, and reflecting on good things that happen throughout your day.”

Everyone has five minutes to spare, right?

Buy a star (yes, a real star) with their name.


What do you give that one person that has it all? How about a star? For as low as $108, you can get a certified star under a person’s name. Kind of weird, but how cool is that?

Track your travel with a scratch-off map.


Conquer the world with your special someone and don’t forget to keep track of all the wonderful places you’ve been. This beautiful map “easily scratches off to reveal the locations you’ve explored, and the exquisite design satisfies the deepest wanderlust.” You can find it at Esty for just $53.99.

Get a special shout out from a celebrity.

Instagram @cameo

Does your loved one have a favorite D-List celebrity? If so (and even if they don’t) one of the coolest gifts out there right now is paying a reality star or former boy band member to give you a personalized shoutout. The cost varies per celeb, but it’s not that much at all. Book at Cameo.

Plan a cozy staycation.

Instagram @unscripteddurham

Just because you can’t get away for the holidays or plan serious travel in 2019 doesn’t mean you can’t sneak in a staycation right in your own ‘hood. Boutique hotels like the Unscripted in Durham (pictured above) make a staycation so accessible and a lot of fun.

Personalize sentimental jewelry.


Remember those pulseras we used to get as little kids with our names on them? They’re back! Sort of. While they’re not gold like they were back in the day, these cute engraved bracelets and necklaces make for the most unique gift ever. Find them on Etsy for $29.

Custom-made coupons.


Let’s say you’re really low on funds but still want to give a unique gift that matters. You can create one-of-a-kind coupons at for free! Check out the coupons I created above. I’m actually going to give them to my husband and mom.

Become Picasso and paint a true original.


Okay, so you may not be an artist, but that doesn’t mean you can’t paint. Like, literally pick up a damn brush. Take an art class and give someone a masterpiece inspired by them. They will be touched, no doubt.

Pay a poet to write a custom poem about your special person.

Courtesy of Aaron Belz

While you may be able to paint a unique piece of artwork, writing a poem is a whole different animal. However, you can actually pay a poet to write a poem that is specifically customized to whomever you wish. Contact your favorite poet on Twitter, send them a DM or @ them and ask them how much they charge for a commissioned piece. You may be surprised to get one for as low as $20. Check out my custom poem above, written by poet Aaron Belz. (Full disclosure, I’m married to him, so I didn’t have to pay.)

Have a boudoir photo session.

Instagram @lucianarizziphotography

This gift should definitely be given to that special person you share your bed with. Imagine the look on their face when they see you in a way they’ve never seen you before. It’ll definitely be an unforgettable moment. The cost will vary, depending on the photographer, but it can range from $50-$400.

Print all your best of 2018 Instagram pictures into one poster.


Instagram moves so fast that if you don’t pay attention it’s like all of those images from yesterday just didn’t happen. Give the gift of incredible moments rolled into one by printing out the best of 2018 Instagram into one picture. It’s super cheap too!

Read: Consider Donating To These 9 Organizations Focused On Giving Education and Futures To Latinas And Other Women Of Color

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Let Us Shed A Tear For The Non-Floridians Who Have Never Experienced Publix

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Let Us Shed A Tear For The Non-Floridians Who Have Never Experienced Publix

Hi, hello, thank you for taking a moment to take a seat at my Ted Talk!

I’d like to take the time we have together today to talk about the wonder that is Publix.

As many of you fortunate enough to live in the Southeast know, Publix is a Florida-based grocery store with all of the class.

@CourtKramer39 / Instagram

They’re a place known for their remarkable customer service and clean aisles. At Publix, shopping is literally a pleasure.

That’s right folks, this is a place of impeccable cleanliness and organization.

@publix / Instagram

At Publix, no corner is left unswept and no aisle left without the item you needed.

And their subs have been bringing people to tears circa 1930.

@SunSentinel / Instagram

If you haven’t had an Italian sub from Publix what what WHAT are you doing?

Guys! This place is so good that schools literally send students there for field trips.

@MeadowfieldElem / Instagram

At Publix there’s so much to learn.

And their employees actually love working there!

And it’s probably because of their amazing benefits and vacation set up.

Recently a wave of Publix enthusiasts went viral for their devotion to the store’s key lime pie.

@pierceall / Instagram

An article by Buzzfeed boasted about the desserts greatness. And they were right.null

But KEY to the Publix experience has been the grocery chain’s dedication to Latino satisfaction.

@pbpost / Instagram

They literally have a STORE that focuses on Latinos called Sabor.

View this post on Instagram

New vest #publixsabor#nowisgreen#ilikeit ????

A post shared by Jessy ???? (@jessica_sainz) on

The Southeastern-based store has run a line of Publix Sabor stores for years geared toward Florida’s Cuban, Puerto Rican, and other Latino shoppers. Recently they started to expand its offerings in heavily populated Latino populations with a Publix store called Sabor.

This place is the diggs guys! And they have all kinds of amazing foods to offer.

Like their commitment to the Cubano.

View this post on Instagram

????????????#winning #publixcuban #yesss

A post shared by @mizz_r3dd (@___ismok3___) on

Which for real will NEVER be good as your mother’s, but will always for real do everything to be top notch.

And their Tres Leches cake which is qualiT

And this is a fact that FOR REAL any Latino in the Southeast knows to be true.

No but for real.

It’s a taste like no other.

And beyond Tres Leche you can count on Publix to STAY stocked on your mama’s favorites.

Literally feels like home at the Publix in Little Havana guys.

And they for real have the hookup.

Yes they do.

Now go forth into the world my people and enjoy your limp meals at Whole Foods and Safeway!

Read: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Calls The Lack Of Black And Latinx Diversity At NYC’s Specialized Schools An “Injustice”

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People Are Accusing Kat Von D Beauty of Scamming Customers With Their Famous Tattoo Liners


People Are Accusing Kat Von D Beauty of Scamming Customers With Their Famous Tattoo Liners

Yes, we know. Makeup maven Kat Von D has been long been on the outs with fans who once adored her. In addition to the slew of offenses stacked up against her, Von D’s recent declaration that she would not be vaccinating her son after his birth certainly has not done her any favors.

Now, the tattoo artists’ latest controversy means she’s enduring another fall from her fans’ graces.

Beauty enthusiasts are currently accusing Von D of scamming them out of their money with the Trooper Tattoo Liner

Cheyenne Vaughan / Facebook

At the end of last month, Facebook user Cheyenne Vaughan accused Von D’s makeup brand of “putting a sample-size eyeliner into a longer-shell tube,” and then selling it to customers for “triple the price.”

Vaughan shared a photo of the eyeliner in her post that showed the dismantled product in three pieces. One was a long tube, the other a cartridge that holds the actual product, and the last piece: a cap.

“Yall I’m about to lose my mind right now,” Vaughan wrote in the post. “Kat von D really been putting a sample size eyeliner into a longer shell tube and selling to my dumb ass for triple the price. I’M ABOUT TO LOSE MY MIND RIGHT NOW.”

Facebook users who saw the post were quick to respond to Vaughan.

“That’s what you get for supporting an anti-vaxer,” wrote on user.

Others came to Von D’s defense, asking Vaughan to support her claims with actual facts.

“Did you actually make sure this is factual, by weighing the amount of liquid in each one? I didn’t think so. Wtf is wrong with people??”

And of course, many didn’t waste time in bringing up the fact that Von D is anti-vaccinations.

“Y’all need to stop supporting the anti-Vaxer,” one wrote.

“That’s what you get for supporting an anti-vaxer,” replied another.

Six thousand shares of the post later, and Von D responded with her defense.

@thekatvond / Instagram

In a post to her Instagram account, Von D asserted that she wasn’t cheating customers. In fact, according to her, while the cartridge is the same size for every liner, the amount of ink inside of it differs depending on the liner size.

“The cartridges in both full size liners and mini liners are the same — it’s the amount of product inside each cartridge that is different. So, for example, the product fill on our full size Tattoo Liner is 0.55 ml, while the product fill for the mini is 0.2 ml – thats over DOUBLE the amount of product! Any brand who has an eyeliner with similar component on the market will tell you the same thing. You need that much cartridge space for the pigment to flow out,” she wrote.

See for yourself in the comments section of Von D’s post on whether or commenters are satisfied. Hint: people remain stanning their anti-Vanti-ant-vaxx position.

Read:This Mexican Scientist Is Making Eco-Friendly Shopping Bags Through Nopal Juice

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