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12 Days of Christmas Gift Ideas

Category Christmas
hands holding a wrapped gift
Planning a special Christmas gift giving event based on the old Christmas song can be lots of fun. This is a guide about 12 days of Christmas gift ideas.


Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

By 2 found this helpful
November 1, 2004

Several friends and I are planning on doing the 12 Days of Christmas for a lady who really needs some pampering right now. She is sole care-giver to her husband, who is a double amputee, has diabetes and is on dialysis everyday. We are wondering what are some things we could give her to correspond to each of the 12 days. Doesn't have to be fancy or expensive, can be cute or funny. Just something to let her know we are thinking about her. Any suggestions? We will be starting on the 14th of December, so time is of the essence.


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December 8, 20101 found this helpful
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Our Sunday School class has done this for the past 3 years. Some ideas are: day 1, pears and a bird ornament; day 5, gold napkin rings and some pretty napkins; day 8, carton of milk and cleaning supplies; day 7, gift certificates to a local swimming club; day 3, 3 cornish hens decorated with little tiny paper french berets; day 6, carton of eggs and maybe cooking ingredients. This gives you something to go from. We always do it secretly. On the last day (Christmas Eve) we always have made a larger gift basket filled with like movies, snacks, maybe some gift/gas cards, etc.

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December 8, 20102 found this helpful
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I have done this for my mother-in-law for years:

Start on December 14th

Day 1 - Pin

Day 2 - Pair of gloves

Day 3 - Picture of the grandkids (three)


Day 4 - Food pack of four items (like jelly)

Day 5 - Family picture

Day 6 - Reese's christmas trees (six pack)

Day 7 - Lucky 7 lottery tickets

Day 8 - 8 oz soap bath & body works

Day 9 - Cafe vienna cooffee (9 oz)

Day 10 - ten of anything

Day 11 - Eleven of anything

Day 12 - Calendar

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December 15, 20100 found this helpful
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On December 13th, there are officially 12 days left until Christmas! A fun and creative Christmas tradition I remember from my childhood is called "The Twelve Days of Christmas. It all starts on December 13th and continues up until Christmas Eve, December 24th. My favorite "12 Days of Christmas" is to leave one nativity piece each night and at the end of the 12 days the family will have a complete nativity scene.

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November 13, 20160 found this helpful
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12 Days of Christmas doesn't end on Christmas, Christmas IS the FIRST day of Christmas ... Christmas Eve is the last day of Advent :/

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By 0 found this helpful
November 5, 2011

I have a family of 2 moms and 2 daughters. I would like to surprise them with 12 Days of Christmas gifts left at their door step, without them knowing who it is. I am the worst gift buyer ever. Any thoughts?

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November 9, 20110 found this helpful
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You don't say what the ages are of the mom's or daughters but you could get gloves, candles, postage stamps car wash gift card, finger nail polish kit, a picture frame, a journel to write in, socks, lotions, kitchen towels, CD of music or a movie video, wind chimes, lip balms, etc. I think you get the idea, just you would know what each person might like or use! Good luck and hope this helps.

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November 15, 20110 found this helpful
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Great idea & how nice of you!

tea bags & mugs

cocoa, marshmallows & mugs

a bag of microwave popcorn for each & a bottle of popcorn seasoning

sugar cookies (store bought is ok) & frosting/sprinkles to decorate

a family video/dvd

board game

little stockings with candy

bubble bath

cute socks

gift certificates for small treats (McDonalds for a box of cookies or happy meal,krispy kreme,etc)

gas card

Just take a leisurely stroll through the store & see what you can come up with, you never know what you'll find.

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December 3, 20100 found this helpful

Several friends and I are planning on doing the 12 Days of

Christmas for a lady who really needs some pampering right now.

She is sole care-giver to her husband, who is a double amputee,


has diabetes and is on dialysis everyday. We are wondering what

are some things we could give her to correspond to each of the

12 days. It doesn't have to be fancy or expensive, can be cute

or funny. Just something to let her know we are thinking about

her. Any suggestions? We will be starting on the 14th of

December, so time is of the essence.

Connie from TX


12 Days of Christmas Ideas

Clean the house, yard, basement, garage, etc., give her a break

(time off), take her shopping, do her shopping, do some errands,

take her to church, buy her favorite candy-snack, fix some meals

and freeze them for later, or spend time with her. It would be

very Christian if you did this every week, not just for 12 days.

I am sure if you put her in touch with a local church it could

be worked out. (11/01/2004)

By Jeff

12 Days of Christmas Ideas

Since she has been his sole caregiver, give her things that she

can use to pamper herself. Like bath items, gift certificates

to get her nails done, coupons for free gourmet coffee, etc. I'm

sure she will appreciate them! (11/02/2004)

By Teresa

12 Days of Christmas Ideas

If her husband needs 24/7 care, offer to stay with him. Other

ideas, prepare a meal that she can freeze for those nights when

she is too tired to cook. How about homemade quick bread,

flavored cream cheese, cut fruit and gourmet coffee for

Christmas morning. Movie GC (either rental or theatre). How about

a set of homemade coupons she can use throughout the year for

homemade meals, chores, fix-its, etc. (11/02/2004)

By profile=thr540911">lindal

12 Days of Christmas Ideas

I think one big thing would be to arrange for her to have a

whole day off to herself, to do whatever she wanted to do. You

could hire a nurse for the day, or have one or two of you offer

to stay the day with her husband. Can you imagine how she would

enjoy just getting out for the day with no worries? (11/02/2004)

By Diana

12 Days of Christmas Ideas

I think trying to match the song lyrics would be lots of fun!

The eight maids a milking could be a milk bubble bath or milk

soap, or "maid service" (friends pitch in to do housework).

Four calling birds - how about some phone cards? Three french

hens could be a homemade chicken dinner, with french bread,

delivered (or prepared in her home) by friends.

Your friend is very lucky to have you all in her life. You are

doing a wonderful thing! (11/12/2004)

By Becki in IN

thrifty 12 days

We do this idea every year and we are a family of 8 so money is

tight, but it brings cheer to those we sponsor at Christmas here

are some of our suggestions with prices:

By Sara from MT

12 Days of Christmas Ideas

I got these ideas from various places. Sorry about the length.

I would love some new ideas too, so please post if you come up

with something else. We do this every year and love it!

Here are a few ideas.

Be on the lookout for little trinkets. You'll be amazed at

how many things you can make work!

Another idea for any of the days is photo albums for their

photos. Maybe a generic album with some scrap book paper or

stickers with the subject of that 12 day.

By profile=thr591467">annecolorgreen

12 Days of Christmas Ideas

I did this a few years ago for a friend. Her husband had broken

his leg and couldn't work (salesman), her sister had passed away

and she became guardian of 4 children on top of her own 3, and

her refrigerator had gone on the fritz while they were visiting

relatives over Thanksgiving. Luckily, her husband was willing

to get involved and I would drop off gifts for 3 or 4 days and

he would hide them until the appropriate day. Of course he

never saw who was leaving the gifts 'by the time I got to the

door whoever it was had gone'.

  1. one box of chocolates
  2. two bottles of bubble bath
  3. three dozen cookies
  4. four bags of snacks
  5. five types of fudge (homemade of course)
  6. six pack of her favorite soda pop
  7. activity pads for the kids
  8. eight little note pads
  9. nine pens, pencils, markers/highlighters
  10. ten bags of tea (relax and refresh type)
  11. eleven baking mixes (Jiffy or similar)
  12. twelve Christmas ornaments

She said afterward 'It was the only thing I looked forward to

that year. I just didn't know how I was going to cope with

everything, especially for the kids. They also couldn't wait

until I got home to see what had come that day, it helped keep

their mind off of missing their parents so much. They really

had something to look forward to.'

It also made Christmas really special for me. Just knowing I

had helped her through a rough time. (11/22/2004)

By Dawn

12 Days of Christmas Ideas

I do the 12 days of Christmas every year for someone. It is fun

to get gifts for the person that correspond with the number day.

The twelfth day could be a Christmas tree made out of 12

Hershey's kisses taped to a paper in the shape of a tree. Party

poppers are inexpensive and usually come in a pack of eight. A

six pack of her favorite soda. A $5 gift certificate to

Starbucks. A mesh bag filled with 10 tealight candles in holiday

colors. Just some ideas! (11/27/2004)

By Kelly

12 Days of Christmas Ideas

Last year I did the twelve days of Christmas for these two girls

whose parents had just recently been divorced. One good idea I

thought of is to buy some fleece, cut the edges and tie them, to

make a really cute blanket. You could also do a Christmas movie

or CD. Make donut snowmen (where you get the powdered donuts and

stack them together with toothpicks, and then get colored

frosting to decorate), hot chocolate mugs with hot cocoa mixture

in there is always fun. Those are just a few ideas, maybe

they'll help. (10/20/2006)

By Katelan

12 Days of Christmas Ideas

I used this poem and taped each night to the gift. I altered

some of the poem verses to my liking on certain nights. It was

so much fun and my kids had a blast. This is a tradition for


Night 1 (pear bread)
Twas the first day of Christmas and all through your house,
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.
'Cept suddenly one little soul did appear,
It is your Christmas friend bringing you holiday cheer.

Tonight calls for a partridge for your pear tree,
But partridges are tough catches, you see.
Now, how 'bout some pear bread, instead of the bird.
Indeed it tastes good, or so we have heard.

Tonight the first night, this sign you have been given,
One ring of your doorbell, not six and not seven,
But from every night hence, one ring of your phone
Will signal a gift from your own secret gnome.

Now beware of this warning - your friend will be here,
But you better not look, or he'll disappear,
And then all your gifts that were carefully planned
On some other front porch they will surprisingly land.

Night 2 (turtles and Dove's chocolates)
Tonight we have turtles and doves coming your way.
Eat all the chocolate you may.
Because in your family you have quite a few,
We've left on your doorstep more than just two.

This glad Christmas season is so full of fun.
We're happy to share with your family, then run.
How grateful we are that you're playing our game.
You'll now find that Christmas won't be the same.

Night 3 (French horn ornaments from $1 store)
Night 3 arrives, but we are not in France,
And three French hens don't come by chance.
So for your family we have given to thee,
3 French horns to put on your tree.

Night 4 (gold coins)
Four calling birds, we can't pay the fare,
For all we have is a purse full of air.
As Christmas approaches, and calls you must make,
Don't use these gold coins or the phone you may break.

Night 5 (ring pops)
On the fifth day of Christmas with things rather tight,
It's important to us that we all travel light.
Gold rings are too heavy (and so are gold buckles),
So please be content with sweet rings on your knuckles.

Night 6 (Cadbury chocolate eggs)
Six geese a-laying -- an interesting sight.
One of them squawked and they all took flight.
What they left in their nest,
you'll just have to look,
But with these you won't want to cook.

Night 7 (goldfish)
The 7th day of Christmas and we are half way done,
Remember no peeking or you'll spoil the fun.
On this day of Christmas, how nice it would be,
If seven swans a swimming your family could see.
The pond was quite empty since the swans have gone south,
We only found goldfish to put in your mouth

Night 8 (Milk Maid caramels)
On the eighth day of Christmas, we're busy as a bee.
Eight maids-a-milking, no where do we see.
But there in the barn we spy a tasty sweet,
Milk Maid caramels, what a treat.

Night 9 (Christmas CD)
Nine ladies dancing would be too big a crowd,
Besides their music is way too loud.
We have for you Christmas songs,
That you can listen to all season long.

Night 10 (caramel corn)
Ten lords a leaping would be an awesome gift,
But they got stuck while jumping through a white snowdrift.
We had to be content, you see,
to watch the popcorn fly.
So we've added a sweet topping to it for you to try.

Night 11 (hot cocoa mix)
Those eleven pipers piping reminds us of our plumber,
To leave him on the doorstep would be a real bummer.
Now make your water piping hot, and fill your cups with

We're giving you some hot chocolate we know you'll love to


We simply can't believe this game is almost through.
We've had a jolly time bringing these gifts to you.
With only one more night, don't you wish you knew,
Just exactly who we are and why we're doing this for you?

Night 12 (I found a drum candle at the $1 store)
Christmas Eve has arrived, and on this our last night,
One dozen drummers would be a grand sight.
But the noise of their drums would hurt your head,
So eat all these cookies we bring you instead.

And so we wish you a joyous Noel,
We know that you're hoping our name we will tell.
But our name stays a secret, we just cannot share.
It wouldn't be right, no it wouldn't, so there!
Merry Christmas!


By Tracy

12 Days of Christmas Ideas

Have you considered looking for a collection of tree ornaments

symbolising the twelve days of Christmas? I would think that

they shouldn't be too hard to find. (11/21/2006)

By Heather

12 Days of Christmas Ideas

A friend was a recipient of the twelve days of Christmas. She

received a piece of the Nativity each day with baby Jesus on the

last day. She was so touched when she found out it was her mom

who delivered the gifts. (11/27/2006)

By Nancy

12 Days of Christmas Ideas

A good idea for the fifth day is using 5 canning jars and

filling them with different kinds of treats (we used five

different kinds of popcorn) and then covering the tops with

Christmas material and screwing the regular golden rings over

it. (12/19/2006)

By hi there

12 Days of Christmas Ideas

I did this for my boyfriend this year:

By Kayla

12 Days of Christmas Ideas

These are terrific ideas, but has anyone ever thought about the

fact that the 12 days of Christmas begins on December 25 and

ENDS on January 5. Those are the 12 days of the Christmas

Season. January 6 begins Epiphany when the Christ child is

revealed to the world. (11/19/2007)


12 Days of Christmas Ideas

We do something similar at work called the "12 working days of

Christmas." With inexpensive ideas for the 12 working days

leading up to our Christmas party on the 21st. Ideas such as:

"Let it snow!" and bring a snowglobe to sit on your desk, or

"Don't be a Grinch" but wear your green day, "Share the warmth"

with hot apple cider day, etc. We don't really go by the song,

but just a way to spread a little holiday cheer at work!


By Becky

12 Days of Christmas Ideas

My guy is very much into music, so lot of my choices are CD or

event based including:
4 calling birds (4 CDs of jazz divas)
5 golden rings (olympic reference since he cycles)
6 geese (The Oscar Peterson Big 6 at Montreux CD)
9 ladies and 10 lords (the Nutcracker performance)
11 pipers piping (brass ensemble performance)
12 drummers drumming (steel drum and percussion ensemble

performance) (11/28/2008)

By Angela

12 Days of Christmas Ideas

The 12 days of the Christmas festival really begins on Christmas

day and goes until Jan. 6. Focusing on the spiritual rebirth and

hope that is Christmas could probably really help your friend.

It would be good to include inspiring quotes about Christmas and

the deep meaning for the soul at this time of year going from

Winter solstice to a gradual returning of the light. Crystals,

essential oils, tea, gift certificates, etc., put into little

pouches, one for each day, ending on the 6th with perhaps a

party and a 3 King's cake! (12/12/2008)

By Heather

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