Old 06-09-2019, 09:37 AM
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HS graduation gift ideas

I need a HS graduation gift for a soon-to-be-graduate; she will be attending an out-of-state college in the fall. It should be fun & practical*.

So far, options include:
  • 3lb bag of mini, pastel-colored, dehydrated (aka cereal) marshmallows.
  • Ping pong balls & red Solo cups.
  • A case of freezer pops.
  • A good book.

* for certain definitions of practical.
Old 06-09-2019, 11:35 AM
Esprise Me is offline
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Gift card to a restaurant she'd like in the city where she'll be attending college (dining hall gets old fast) or Bed, Bath & Beyond (for all their dorm furnishing needs.) Or just cash. Everyone loves cash.
Old 06-09-2019, 12:22 PM
Wesley Clark is online now
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Morning after pills?
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Old 06-09-2019, 01:02 PM
pool is offline
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Cold, hard, cash, it's just the right size, color, and shape. Just put it in a card or fold it into an airplane.
"You can do anything you set your mind to...But money helps"

Last edited by pool; 06-09-2019 at 01:03 PM.
Old 06-09-2019, 01:44 PM
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I always think of a trunk.

Y’know, for the adventure that lies ahead!

It’ll be a coffee table in his first shared digs, a tv stand in his first apt, it will always be great storage wherever he goes afterward! And maybe, one day, he’ll send his kid off to college with the same trunk!
Old 06-10-2019, 08:07 PM
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C'mon, any more fun but (marginally) useful gifts?
Old 06-10-2019, 08:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Wesley Clark View Post
Morning after pills?

Originally Posted by pool View Post
Cold, hard, cash, it's just the right size, color, and shape. Just put it in a card or fold it into an airplane.
I vote this.

"fun" gifts suck. "Useful" gifts are great.
Old 06-10-2019, 08:14 PM
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What's your budget? Are you willing to spring for a Blue Apron subscription? It's fun, practical and maybe educational.
I am your father's brother's nephew's cousin's former roommate.
Old 06-10-2019, 08:22 PM
Dewey Finn is offline
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The student in question is going to college in a different state, so she will probably be living in a dorm. Now some have communal kitchens, but you can't count on it. So a Blue Apron subscription may not work.

There are various practical things one might want to bring to college (dorm-sized refrigerator, microwave oven, clothes hamper, book bag, area rug, comforter, bed sheet set, etc.) but who knows what the parents have already gotten? So I agree that cash is probably best.
Old 06-10-2019, 08:39 PM
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Coffee maker
Old 06-10-2019, 09:42 PM
carnut is offline
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I love the idea of gift certificates to restaurants around campus. Or BB&B or Target. The problem with dorms, is that they don't know what they really have until they arrive. Some dorms come with small fridges now, most don't. I expect that all of them have microwaves in the common room on each level. Some may have horrible, aluminum blinds, instead of warmer curtains. Dining hall food does indeed get stale. Or like my alma mater, they may have swapped to catered food from chain joints (yuck).
Old 06-11-2019, 04:03 PM
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Don't buy an appliance like a fridge or coffeemaker. Most dorms have restrictions on what you can have, and even if you've confirmed that your purchase satisfies those requirements, there may be an issue if both roommates have fridges they want to bring. One of my friends in college had to make arrangements, in a city far from home where many people don't own cars, to have someone pick up the fridge that her father sent because it was too big.

Bed risers are handy--if they're allowed. If not, they're easy to get rid of and not that expensive, but even easier is for the student to buy what she needs with cash or gift cards given to her.

Another option, if you want to give something more personal than money, is to take her shopping and buy her something you pick out together (could be clothes/jewelry, video games or other gadgets/entertainment, gear or supplies for a hobby she enjoys, etc., not just college stuff). Or offer to take her and some friends out to dinner to celebrate. Or to something else she would enjoy--a baseball game? A spa day?

A small game might be nice, if you're thinking more along the lines of ping pong balls and solo cups. I don't know if the kids are still playing Cards Against Humanity (probably not) or Exploding Kittens (less unlikely?) but something along those lines. I once had a book of "would you rather..." prompts that were fun to break the ice with a group of people, especially people who had been drinking. It's hard to guess what she might be into without knowing more about her.


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