Gift Buying: Thinking Outside the Box
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Gift Buying: Thinking Outside the Box

I know the frustration of trying to find a gift for somebody who seems to have everything. What finally helped me take the angst out of gift buying was starting to think outside the box. Since then, it seems to be easier to find something that my loved one will like, whatever the occasion. These days, I look in unusual places for gift ideas. Instead of retail shops, I see what is happening at local auction houses. I may look into getting my loved one something they've expressed an interest in recently, like taking guitar lessons. I may even surprise my friend with a visit from a chef who prepares a special meal just for him or her. If you have the gift buying blues, let me help. I'll provide some tips on how to get clues for wonderful presents that will delight and amaze your loved ones.


Gift Buying: Thinking Outside the Box

Seven Over-The-Top Birthday Gifts For The Adventure-Seeking Man

Peggy Lee

Does the special man in your life seek excitement at every turn? If so, you've probably racked your brain trying to think of the perfect birthday gift that will quench his thirst for adventure. If you've got the means to indulge, the following gift ideas won't come cheap, but they are sure to please the adventurer in your life.

1. Flying Lesson Gift Certificate

How about a gift certificate for an introductory lesson in flying? This might seem over-indulgent, but for the adventure-loving man, it could be the thrill of a lifetime. Consider a full-hour lesson with a certified instructor, or a shorter lesson that completes in 30 minutes. Some instructions may vary anywhere from 20-90 minutes, so your options are flexible.

Guided by his instructor, your "student pilot" will actually fly the plane with his own set of controls. He'll learn procedures for take-off and landing as well. You may have the option for a plane lesson or a helicopter lesson gift certificate.

2. Introductory Tandem Skydiving Lesson

Definitely not for the faint of heart, tandem skydiving will get his adrenaline pumping. Your adventure-seeker will skydive harnessed to a trained instructor, with all equipment provided for. Consider the option of videotaping the jump via a skydiving photography package. Choose DVD, Blu-ray or still photo options to capture the experience forever.

3. Stock Car Ride-Along

If your guy enjoys racing, here's an exciting gift of a lifetime. Imagine his excitement as he rides along with a stock car driver on a three or six lap course. If he lives his life in the fast lane, riding along at 150 miles per hour should be a thrill. This gift may provide a complementary racing suit and helmet for the ride.

4. Whitewater Rafting/Kayaking Lesson

Consider a one-time lesson or a full year membership. Beginner programs with certified instructors will teach the fundamentals of whitewater rafting. For memberships, the necessary equipment should be provided, including kayak rental.

A private lesson may include several hours of instruction. Instruction may include paddling and equipment fitting techniques, as well as lessons on rolling and strokes. If you choose a membership, your recipient may receive discounts on future equipment.

5. Hot Air Balloon Ride

Many companies offer rides nationwide, so the opportunity is available. Imagine your man's thrill as he soars the skies up to 2,000 feet high. The balloon ride may cover several miles and last for approximately 60 minutes. Be adventurous and choose a two-person balloon tour, so you may join your man for the ride.

6. Scuba Diving Discovery Course

Give the gift of underwater discovery. Here he'll learn the fundamentals of scuba diving, from breathing techniques to proper use of equipment. Upon completion, your man will receive a certificate proclaiming his accomplishment. The introductory course is great for those with no prior experience and may last anywhere from 2-5 hours. In most cases, it is not a private lesson, and a small group of students may participate in the lesson.

7. Sailing Cruise

This is a bit more mellow than the above mentioned ideas, although still exciting and indulgent. The chartered yacht cruise may be for him alone, or you can enjoy a romantic couples cruise together. Either way, a scenic sail is sure to please.

A birthday cruise may include a special champagne toast. If you're close to the city, a city harbor cruise may be preferable, especially at night when the city skylights are visible. Some sailing cruises are narrated as well.

Before Deciding On a Gift

Remember that in some cases, adventure-type gift certificates are non-refundable. You'll want to inquire about refunds and rescheduling dates before you make your purchase. Happy birthday to that special man in your life, and here's to a memorable adventure.

For other gift ideas, check out some local gift companies, like This-N-That Gifts.