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Another Christmas gift thread - ideas for 22-year-old son

HoggirlHoggirl 1796 replies201 threads Senior Member
I want to implement the four gifts rule - something you want, something you need, something to wear, and something to read - now that ds is launched and living on his own. He has shared his “want” - a day pack of some sort for hiking and will send me some links. Just trying to come up with the others - particularly something to read. Not sure about whether to get fiction, bio, financial advice (he’s pretty financially savvy). Just not sure. I could get him piano sheet music, since that is also read.

He has always been rather difficult to buy for as he never seems to want much of anything - which isn’t a bad quality.

What are you all getting for your young adult sons?
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Replies to: Another Christmas gift thread - ideas for 22-year-old son

  • happy1happy1 23222 replies2296 threads Senior Member
    edited December 2019
    Not sure it fits in your categories but the main gifts I got my son included workout clothes, a bottle of bourbon (to go in his stocking), a gift card for a massage, and a check. We also said we'd buy him a tux (which he will need for his sister's upcoming wedding).
    edited December 2019
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  • 1214mom1214mom 4710 replies188 threads Senior Member
    I have 23 and 25 YO sons, and they are very hard to buy for.
    I like your idea, and may use it for next year. What a great way to “limit” and categorize gifts. My 23 yo son asked for a book called Everybody Lies (attempted to link below)
    He also suggested Malcolm Gladwell, Talking With Strangers.
    I got same son some “all elements” joggers from the gap. Hiking pants could be good. Or a fleece or some sort. Hiking poles, if he would use them, could be a “need” (maybe that’s a stretch). Fun socks, whether for work or for hiking are a great idea.
    Need could be help with a ROTH IRA or something similar.
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  • anomanderanomander 1723 replies4 threads Senior Member
    How about a kindle unlimited subscription for a year? I go through 2-3 “free” books per week under the program.
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  • Youdon'tsayYoudon'tsay 19364 replies460 threads Senior Member
    This may not help OP, but ds1 just told me what he's put on the list for the gift exchange for gf's family ... a Chromecast. They don't have cable but do have Apple TV, but it's super old. Anyway, throwing this out there for anyone else trying to come up with ideas. I think it's a good one.
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  • momofsenior1momofsenior1 8288 replies70 threads Senior Member
    There is a great series of books "best hikes near...." almost all major cities. You can get him the book closest to where he lives.
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  • HoggirlHoggirl 1796 replies201 threads Senior Member
    Love that @momofsenior1 - found on Amazon (I hope it’s the right series). Even if it isn’t, it was highly rated and contains 125 hikes! Thanks!

    Who can suggest a good brand of hiking socks? Or any other fun hiking gear - just for day hikes. Poles seem too hard to me.
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  • ChoatieMomChoatieMom 5406 replies258 threads Senior Member
    Our 22-year-old son says he has everything he wants and needs (mostly provided by the army, including clothes) and all his reading is done on a screen. We are really stumped this year. I crocheted two large Christmas “starter” stockings for his mantle (he loves when I make him things) which I know eventually will be replaced by the traditions he creates with his future mate. We got him some whiskey stones, a camo hunting hat with a built-in headlight, a Revell model car kit of the old Mustang he is restoring which he’ll enjoy putting together and keeping on a bookshelf, a towel-wrap to wear while shaving, and a very fine bottle of bourbon. All of these can be enjoyed while he’s home with us for a couple of weeks and are easy to take back with him. Mostly, we just enjoy time together. I’m thinking we’re pretty much at the end our “item” gift-giving and will probably just write him a nice Christmas check in upcoming years to use as he sees fit.
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  • momamhmomamh 13 replies1 threads New Member
    "On Trails: An Exploration" by Robert Moor is an excellent book and an interesting read. I loved it and so did my son! He loves to hike as well.

    Summary from Amazon:

    "New York Times Bestseller • Winner of the National Outdoor Book Award • Winner of the Saroyan International Prize for Writing • Winner of the Pacific Northwest Book Award • “The best outdoors book of the year.” —Sierra Club

    From a talent who’s been compared to Annie Dillard, Edward Abbey, David Quammen, and Jared Diamond, On Trails is a wondrous exploration of how trails help us understand the world—from invisible ant trails to hiking paths that span continents, from interstate highways to the Internet.

    While thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail, Robert Moor began to wonder about the paths that lie beneath our feet: How do they form? Why do some improve over time while others fade? What makes us follow or strike off on our own? Over the course of seven years, Moor traveled the globe, exploring trails of all kinds, from the miniscule to the massive. He learned the tricks of master trail-builders, hunted down long-lost Cherokee trails, and traced the origins of our road networks and the Internet. In each chapter, Moor interweaves his adventures with findings from science, history, philosophy, and nature writing.

    Throughout, Moor reveals how this single topic—the oft-overlooked trail—sheds new light on a wealth of age-old questions: How does order emerge out of chaos? How did animals first crawl forth from the seas and spread across continents? How has humanity’s relationship with nature and technology shaped world around us? And, ultimately, how does each of us pick a path through life?

    Moor has the essayist’s gift for making new connections, the adventurer’s love for paths untaken, and the philosopher’s knack for asking big questions. With a breathtaking arc that spans from the dawn of animal life to the digital era, On Trails is a book that makes us see our world, our history, our species, and our ways of life anew."
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  • momo2x2018momo2x2018 936 replies52 threads Member
    Feetures merino wool socks with arc support, are excellent
    Allbirds have a similar sock
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  • Midwest67Midwest67 3250 replies13 threads Senior Member

    I am a regular hiker and I hike with a large local hiking club.

    In my experience, hikers tend to be picky about their gear & set-up, and not everyone agrees on what is "best".

    A good day pack is usually quite spendy! If he has given you the link of the exact pack on his wish list, then I say go for it.

    I am a diehard Darn Tough Socks person. It's all I use for hiking. But, some people like a tall sock and some people like a short sock. I'm on Team Short Sock.

    If he is a winter hiker and doesn't have Trail Crampons, those are essential. https://www.rei.com/product/875696/hillsound-trail-crampons

    ^ I have the Hillsound crampons and the Hillsound gaiters and love them both.

    A lot of people I know use AllTrails for maps on their phone. The maps can be pre-downloaded before you get to your location that has no cell service. It's not perfect, but I use it a lot. You can gift an annual subscription to All Trails Pro. Less expensive than a Garmin. (The free version is not very useful at all.)

    REI offers a variety of classes in partnership with NOLS. I took the Wilderness First Aid weekend class and it was fabulous. I learned so much.

    Also, another very mom-like gift is a SPOT with a subscription. If out in the boonies and needing evacuation help, it's a life saver (literally). See REI.

    I also LOVE my phone leash. I cannot seem to find the link to the exact one I have, but it is something like this: https://www.roguefishing.co/products/the-protector-phone-tether-2

    I attach it to my day pack and put the phone in the backpack strap pocket in front. If I drop my phone, it's not going to break on a rock or go flying off a cliff. It's great for going to outdoor events or things where it would be easy to part with your phone.

    If he doesn't have a hydration bladder yet, that is another good gift. Within our hiking club, there are people who stick to their water bottles, but many who once they get a hydration bladder would never think of going back to bottles. I am a Platypus fan.


    Good luck and happy shopping!
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  • HoggirlHoggirl 1796 replies201 threads Senior Member
    @Midwest67 - so helpful! Thank you! Another friend recommended the Darn Tough sock brand.

    He is not a winter hiker, but aren’t those cool!

    He has a hydration bladder.

    I will check out the two subscriptions and the phone leash! Thanks!
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  • deb922deb922 5810 replies195 threads Senior Member
    edited December 2019
    We buy this for us every year. It’s our contribution to our national parks


    An annual pass, gets you into every national park in the nation. $80

    Can buy it at any national park, but ask for the all parks pass, I don’t think it’s bought that much. Or you can order on line.

    @ChoatieMom its free for service members
    edited December 2019
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  • Midwest67Midwest67 3250 replies13 threads Senior Member

    I have more ideas...

    Nite Ize gear ties. A variety pack (sizes). So useful!


    This is the phone pocket I use. Attaches to front strap of backpack.


    People might make fun, but a hiking umbrella is the best. A lot of thru-hikers use them. Great for keeping the sun off of you in unforgiving heat, great for keeping the rain off of you in hot weather when the last thing you want to do is put on your rain gear and sweat. Also, if above the tree line or in wide open area, you can do your bathroom biz by hiding behind your umbrella.


    The Gossamer accessories page has some cool small things. Although their target market is ultralight backpackers, day hikers would find a lot of good, useful things.

    Another "mom" gift and something he might not be too keen to spend $$ on is a good quality first aid kit. I got my basic kit from NOLS and have added this and that to it over time. https://store.nols.edu

    If he has not yet discovered Leukotape for blister and hot spot prevention, I highly recommend it. If it's going to be a long hot hike, I tape my feet before getting started, and I carry a roll in my pack as part of my first aid kit. It is very sticky and has some stretch to it.


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  • CheeringsectionCheeringsection 2595 replies81 threads Senior Member
    I prefer the Wrightsock from REI. I have both summer and winter ones. I have given them as gifts and gotten others hooked on them as well.
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  • kiddiekiddie 3568 replies221 threads Senior Member
    another book idea - A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail by Bill Bryson
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  • HoggirlHoggirl 1796 replies201 threads Senior Member
    Thanks for all the great ideas.

    He has now (today) said he might want “a couple of sweaters.” No idea what is in for young men. He lives in SoCal but sometimes travels to cooler places.

    It was so much easier to buy puzzles and games!
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  • HoggirlHoggirl 1796 replies201 threads Senior Member
    @Midwest67 - that phone thingie will make a great stocking stuffer!
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