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  • Writer's pictureAudra Krieg

Consumable Holiday

When my husband and I first moved here we found the cutest little 3 bedroom house. It was an adorable blue single family on a one way street and of course, it was close to the right school. We loved the space, had plenty of storage and at 1200 square feet we felt like we had more than enough room for our family of three. Then we had Penelope. Somehow within the first year of her life we felt like that house was closing in on us. With the addition of one more child in the house we were tripping over everything. Funny how that works, huh? So when we found our house and had more than double the square footage, we jumped at the chance to move. Then, we had Eloise and again, we’re back in an over-stuffed house with way too much “stuff.” As we’ve been talking to our kiddos about their Christmas lists lately Jason and I are exchanging sideways glances trying to figure out where all of this “stuff” fits in. When our oldest was about 5 years old we would do everything that we could to make his gift pile as big as possible. We acted as if the amount of gifts really mattered and I remember purchasing things that he didn't even ask for. Looking back at that actually hurts my heart. I mean, look at this gift pile...

And then last year, our middle gal was thrilled with simple surprises... in case you didn't see her reaction to underwear... Please click here.

It has become painfully noticeable that our kiddos don't need the "stuff" but what they actually need is us! They need our time, our love and our thoughtfulness. They are far happier with a gift purchased with their interests in mind than they are with gifts on the "hot seller" list!

We practice a pretty routine purge and donate system around here. We’re constantly filtering out clothing that no longer fits or toys and books that are no longer keeping their attention. We know that the very fact that we can do that is a blessing and we are grateful for it. We also know that this time of year is a season of giving and that people love giving gifts especially to our kiddos. If you read my post last year on the 12 Years of Christmas and how we were switching things up, you know that we scaled way back on how we give to our children. We have way more conversations about the kinds of things that “go” with us when we leave this world than we did before and we have a lot of conversations about the difference between things that fill our home instead of the things that fill our hearts and memory banks.

Since we love to travel and spend time together as a family, we are focusing on trips and experiences over “stuff” this year. We’ve come up with an awesome list of consumable gifts that we know any Outer Banks lover will enjoy! The idea of a consumable gift is that it’s a memory or experience that you will use up or consume instead of use for a little while and outgrow. Eventually, sweaters are worn out and video games are over played. Sooner or later, the fingerling monkey that a child absolutely has to have is at the bottom of the toy box missing it’s tail. The hot shoes of the season are out-grown and you're left with something worn out and stinky... Don’t get me wrong, some of these things are so awesome to have but in case you are looking for some outside of the box gifts this year, check out this list!

FOR THE KIDS and FAMILIES Outer Banks Children at Play Museum, single passes or a membership. Bouncing Off the Walls in Kitty Hawk. North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island, passes or a yearly membership. Jennettes Pier Fishing Passes Surf or Skim Camp with OBX Skim Camps or Island Revolution. Outer Banks Family YMCA Membership or Swim Lessons H2OBX Waterpark season pass A night stay at Beachwoods Resort with indoor waterpark in Kitty Hawk

Admission to the First Flight Adventure Park or Corolla Adventure Park


Outer Banks Paintball passes for him and a friend.

Movie Passes for RC Theaters in Kill Devil Hills

H2OBX Waterpark season pass

Admission to the First Flight Adventure Park or Corolla Adventure Park

Gift Certificate for Gearworks Laser Tag in Nags Head


Charter Fishing with Fishin' Frenzy or any other local boat. Plan a boil with Outer Banks Boil Company Plan a date night to 1587 Restaurant and Inn. Skydiving Certificate with Skydive OBX. Golf Passes to Nags Head Golf Links Spring Lawn Clean up with Advanced Tree

Tasting for 4 at Kill Devil Rum in Manteo FOR THE MOMS:

Book a room at The Sanderling and include breakfast, kid free ;) Dear Jason, I am talking to you here my love.

Plan a spa day or day of wellness at Lovie’s Salon, Spa and Wellness in Corolla

Plan a wine tasting for her and friends at Trio Wine Beer and Cheese Elizabethan Gardens Pass for her and a friend or daughter. Home Cleaning Services from OBX Shore Thing. Car cleaning and detailing from Two Buds and Suds FOR THE TEACHER:

A restaurant certificate to a new restaurant that they may not have had the chance to try yet! Like Russo’s Bistro in Kitty Hawk Movie Passes for RC Theaters in Kill Devil Hills A pound of coffee from Starbucks or Charis Coffee in Manteo Essential Oils, like lavender so when our kids are being crazy they can breathe in the most calming scent of all… Spa Service from Oasis Day Spa in Kill Devil Hills

and also....

Dollar Tree Giftcards, give our teachers their own cash back!

Giftcards to TJMaxx!

Side note: It may have taken me 10 years to realize this but teachers REALLY aren't interested in some homemade craft but they are really, really good at making you think that they love it.

This list barely skims the surface of amazing gifts that you can give from right here on the Outer Banks. Some of these would be so great for that hard to shop for person on your list!

Finally, I have to add, when your shopping for the person who seems to already have “everything,” a donation in their name to a local charity like the Outer Banks Relief Foundation is ALWAYS a fabulous idea!

Who wouldn’t love to give or receive one of these amazing local experiences? As an added bonus, we get to support one of our small Outer Banks businesses while we give this holiday season! Keep it local right here on the Outer Banks!

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