Holiday Gift Ideas

Home & Family
on December 1, 2002

Most everyone loves to open a package. The anticipation alone is a gift of sorts. With that in mind, we scoured our incoming mail for gift ideas unusual enough to spark the imagination—and perhaps help you get creative for those you care for the most. We haven’t tried these firsthand, but they seemed both fun and practical.

Lincoln Logs (K’NEX Industries)
Suggested retail: $19.99-$39.99
For nearly 90 years, Lincoln Logs construction sets have been an enduring holiday gift—a classic building toy with which grandparents and parents of today’s children played. Three new construction sets have been added this year: Fort Abraham Lincoln, once home base for Lt. Col. George Custer; Big Valley Barn, a farm-themed set which includes colorful figures and animals; and Conestoga Ranch, a homestead with a covered wagon. Available where toys are sold.

ZipSaw (Black & Decker)
Suggested retail: $54.99
The new ZipSaw, an easy, versatile cutting tool that slices through plywood, paneling, linoleum, netting, fabric, PVC and copper piping, carpet, and more, is perfect for home projects. Not only does it perform as a jigsaw, but its 14 accessories allow you to sand, contour, brush, and scrape. “The ZipSaw was designed to be easy to use and non-intimidating,” says Jessica Wolma, products manager. Available at home center, mass merchants, and hardware stores.

Earbags of Sweden
Suggested retail: $12-$16
Earbags of Sweden, one of the fastest-selling souvenirs of the 2002 Winter Olympics, are double-layered earmuffs that stay in place without a band. Earbags gently but firmly snap on the ears and are designed for runners, cyclists, skiers, hikers, and other outdoor enthusiasts who don’t let cold temperatures keep them inside. Sold in sporting goods stores, department stores, and by mail order.

Rescue Heroes figures and vehicles (Fisher-Price)
Suggested retail: $12.99 each
These action figures for young children perform daring rescues on land, sea, and air. Characters include a flying firefighter (pictured), motorcycle police officer, air rescue specialist, and an arctic tracker. Available where Fisher-Price toys are sold.

KidzMouse (KidzMouse Inc.)
Suggested retail: $23.95
Make computers more kid-friendly with KidzMouse, which allows children to create and re-create their own fun characters. KidzMouse, a half-sized version of a traditional computer mouse that easily fits smaller hands, begins as a plain white mouse with big eyes. Children apply stickers like polka dots, stripes, jungle animals, and bugs to decorate their mouse. Available at www.kidzmouse.com, children’s and technology museums, computer stores, and toy stores.

George Foreman Extra Large Family Size Grill with Bun Warmer
Suggested retail: $59.99
Use this popular family-sized grill to cook up five extra-large burgers, five chicken breasts, or four steaks in just minutes. Features a thermostat-controlled light that indicates when the grill is ready, slanted grooves that channel grease into a tray, a specially shaped spatula for easy flipping, and a nonstick cooking plate. Available exclusively at Sears.

Premium Foot Spa with Water Jets (Dr. Scholl)
Suggested retail: $29.99
Revive and soothe the tired feet of someone you love with a foot spa that uses rollers to massage and jets of water that directly shoot onto the feet. Dr. Scholl’s foot spa features multiple settings to control heat and massage, infrared heat, acupressure, and vibration. Available through mass merchandisers, drug chains, and warehouse stores.

i-Zone Color Changing Instant Camera (Polaroid)
Suggested retail: $19.99
Teenagers will love this camera that allows them to take instant stamp-sized (1 by 1 1/2 inches), stick-on pictures. The camera’s heat sensitivity allows the exterior to change from dark blue to light blue based on body temperature (like mood rings). The fun photos can be placed in lockers, notebooks, journals, or practically anywhere else. Sold at leading mass market, photo specialty, and select toy stores.

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