These gifts sound lame … but are actually very useful


We’ve all done it – removed the wrapping paper, opened the bag or envelope, and died a little bit inside. Regardless of how old you are, disappointment with a lame gift is a universal feeling, and the art of that forced ‘thank you’ is something we never quite forget. “It’s just what I always wanted,” is the refrain that does the rounds on Christmas Day up and down the country.

The toilet night-light (really!) or the special timer that reminds you to feed the dog (you’ve actually already got one of those and it’s called – your dog) are pretty awful, but there are a few that sound desperately lame but are actually really quite useful. Read on to find out more.

#1 A Light Up Alarm Clock

The last thing you want in the middle of the holiday season is something that reminds you you’ve got to get up for work – but this is waking up with a twist. This particular light up alarm clock simulates a sunrise to make waking up a more pleasant experience than the continual beeping of a traditional alarm or the default ringtone on your phone.

If you don’t take to mornings that well, especially dark winter mornings, or you are fond of a big night out, the exact opposite of a rude awakening could be exactly what the doctor ordered.

#2. Gift Vouchers

Anyone who’s been alive since the middle of the last century will have had one of these in their stocking at some point. Seen by some as a bit of a lazy present they are actually a lot more thoughtful than you might think.

Young teens are notoriously difficult to buy for, which means they get a lot of gift vouchers for birthdays and at Christmas.

The recipient can use the voucher for a luxury, or something they’ve been wanting but can’t afford. The sense of independence and personal choice that vouchers provide is particularly welcomed by teens.

Gift cards aren’t a lame gift provided they are for something the recipient actually wants. Places like take the guesswork out of it.

#3 USB Mug Warmer

It sounds like something you’d get in the Secret Santa at the office, but before you chuck it in your desk draw and go and make friends with whomever got a tin of Quality Street – think about this: How many cups of tea, coffee, or hot chocolate have you let get cold on your desk due to meetings, distractions or actually having to do your job? If the answer is less than double figures, then count again. If it’s in the hundreds – you’ll see the value in this.

It’s powered by your computer, so it’s not even running up your electricity bills (unless you work at the home of course).

But you’ll likely agree that this, along with an alarm you won’t want to throw across the room or a voucher you can spend on what you want, aren’t such lame presents after all.

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