A Simple Green Gift Idea For Long Distance Relatives

Over the last several weeks my husband and I have been thinking a great deal about gifts for our grandparents. Their homes are full of things they love and adore, and we've already done the whole coupon thing (besides, we'd rake their yard even without a coupon!). And although crafts would be appreciated, they're the ones who taught us everything we know, so really, what's left to give? They all live several states away and for awhile we were stumped...

Although our grandparents say they need nothing (and that's probably quite true), giving nothing at Christmas is pretty lackluster. For the last several years work schedules and project time lines haven't allowed us to even travel home for the holidays, so we were looking for something that screamed, well, us. That made them miss us and love us and be proud of us. Does such a gift even exist?

It does actually and the idea is quite simple. Just make them a video! Even if you don't have a video camera, there's a good chance you have a friend or acquaintance who would be willing to help you out on your adventure and either be your videographer or allow you to borrow their camera.

We've been busy taking them all around the town where we live, showing them the cool views of the city and how we interact with it. We took them to work, out for a night on the town, and even showed them the best place to see a sunset in the entire city. We know they'll love it, because it's us. Not the us we are when you're home for the holidays, but the real us and how our life works.

We had to do several test runs of video, mainly because the first time around we forgot to put ourselves in the video as much as we should be. Grandparents aren't really going to care about seeing the sights, they want to see you smile as you tell them a story about how you go sledding on this hill when there's snow or where the best place is to get a hot dog and why!

There's several online video editing programs, one of the easiest being iMovie if you're a Mac person instead of PC (or know someone who is). Editing isn't as hard as you think it is and when you're making your own home videos there's no need to worry about licensing the songs you play along with it.

It's a great way to send yourself home for the holidays without spending a dime and giving those who already have everything, exactly what they want — you!

Related: Alternative Non-Stuff Gift Ideas For 'No Gifts Please' People

(Image: Flickr member Daniel E Bruce licensed for use by Creative Commons)

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Sarah Trover has lived all across the Midwest and currently calls the hot dog-laden city of Chicago home. She rides scooters and seeks out kitchens that make the best pie.

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