Happy belated New Year, SKC readers! I don’t know about you, but I had a rather big life change occur over break. I’ve moved from my cozy college cottage in the small town of Kirksville back home to Saint Louis, where I am currently student teaching, the last step in my process of getting my Master’s degree. New job, new roommates (…my parents), and a whole new slew of friends to keep in touch with. Keeping in touch certainly isn’t easy, and when you get busy, sometimes it’s the first thing that gets pushed to the wayside. Luckily, however, there are lots of easy and creative ways you can show your far-off friends you’re thinking of them. Whether you’re a freshman trying to keep in touch with your high school comrades and family members, a senior with such a wide group that you’re constantly trying to keep up, or someone like me, who has recently switched locations, these tips will help you maintain tight relationships with everyone on your list.
**Tips and Tricks**
1. The Pre-made Route: Short on time? No worries. More than a few awesome companies are out there waiting to serve your food-gift needs. Zingerman’s, for example, even has a Midnight Feeding Care Box that any college night owl is sure to love. Or, for a lighter option, The Healthy Basket’s products look fantastic.
2. Homemade from the Heart:Wanting to try your hand with something a little fancier? Your options are endless. I tried the Homemade Pumpkin and Apple Butter from Baked Bree’s Food Gift section not too long ago, and the reviews from the lucky recipients were incredible. Martha Stewart’s selections are great as well. Many of these items, or some that you may come up with on your own, would make great hand-delivered gifts, especially if they come in fragile glass packaging. However, if you’re not close enough for hand-delivery, there’s always…
3. Snail Mail: I’m a strong believer in the joys of snail mail, which of course, isn’t to say that technology hasn’t made keeping in touch much easier, but, who doesn’t love receiving something hand-written and stamped? This is why I’m happy to have discovered GiversLog. I had no idea that there were so many things that could be posted in the mail sans box or envelope. From tinsel, to bouncy balls, to flip flops, to candy, as long as it’s under 13 ounces, you can slap some samps on them, as is!
4. Invite: Let’s face it, there’s no substitute for some quality face-to-face conversation, so clear a spot in your schedule, and plan a reunion for a crowd that may not get to see each other enough. BGSK’s guide for making a meal into a gift is the perfect solution to throwing together a last minute dinner party.
5. Plan Ahead: So maybe you’re not close enough to invite your friend of choice over for dinner, and maybe a postmarked plate of treats just isn’t enough…plan ahead. Know you’re both going to be home for Easter break? Start planning now. Once you both have the rendezvous on your schedule, it’s harder to find an excuse to cancel, and you’ll find yourself looking forward to it as break nears! Need some ideas? Check out these 7 Best Giftable Food Activities.
Shannon Kelley is currently finishing her Master’s degree by student teaching in Saint Louis, Missouri. She will be using all of the techniques above to keep her favorite far away friends feel more nearby.