Unique, personal gifts 2020

It’s that time of year again! Shopping for some people can be very easy. Others not so much! Or maybe you want to do a little something extra – like commemorate a trip, support a hobby or more. Here is a list of KCPL staff members favorites to give and get:

Cecilia/Collection Development Dept.:


From the website: Since 2010, Out of Print’s mission has been to spread the joy of reading by transforming literary classics into bookish apparel and accessories. With every purchase, you help us to donate books and support literacy programs around the world.

Book companions that would go great with this site:
The Color Purple by Alice Walker

The Stand by Stephen King
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
Matilda by Roald Dahl

Robin/PR Department:

My friend and I went to San Diego last year. I found this online and plan on giving it to her to remind her of all the fun we had, https://etsy.me/36tEX2i

I also like to give (and get) personalized gifts. Yeti has an option to personalize some of their items. I also like to support small businesses like Bunches of Bows in Ft. Mitchell and MK’s Totebags & Monogramming in Covington’s Mainstrasse Village.


Check out these magazines:
Food and Travel
Taste of Home
American Craft
HGTV Magazine


Chrisy/Collection Services Department:

I love buying t-shirts for family members with fun themes or messages they will enjoy. I often find shirts that are perfect for them on https://shirt.woot.com/  They sell all kinds of t-shirts, totes, etc. People have ideas and submit them and some of them get made into shirts that anyone can buy. There are lots of timely topics with fun shirts.

Checkout ebooks:
Inspired by Alice in Wonderland
Cats in the Stacks Mystery Series
On writing and thinking

Dave Schroeder/Executive Director:


I like to support local. This studio in Ludlow, Kentucky creates pillows and prints featuring the Suspension Bridge and Music Hall in addition to other things.

Now checkout views of Ludlow on Faces and Places

Tim/IT Department:

I am given a Cincinnati Zoo membership every year for Christmas by a family member.  It is a great gift that keeps on giving all year round.  There is so much to do at the zoo for all ages and is also a great place to relax and unwind. http://cincinnatizoo.org/


Now check out ebooks:
National Geographic Kids: More True Stories of Animal Friendships
eBooks about FIONA! (video too)

Maria/Children’s Librarian

I like shopping at That Special Gift on 18/Burlington Pike in the little shopping center with the UDF. They have so many beautiful ornaments and figurines and art that is perfect for gift giving.  That Special Gift (facebook.com)

Now get in the spirit with some holiday music from Hoopla


Faith/Durr Branch Manager

Local honey makes a great teacher/coach/babysitter gift. It supports local farmers and is something everyone can use! There are lots of places to choose from, but one of my favorites is Crigger Honey https://www.criggerfarm.com



Now check out these ebooks:
Bringing It to the Table: On Farming and Food by Wendell Berry
Love the bees.  ( kids too!)
Imagine next year’s garden 
Magazines too: Organic Gardening and Mother Earth News

Joel/Program Coordinator/Singing Librarian

Don’t forget St. Vincent de Paul!  The Estes Avenue location is really good.  https://www.svdpcincinnati.org/

Get ideas for giving that are green and creative!
Wise Craft: Turning Thrift Store Finds, Fabric Scraps, and Natural Objects Into Stuff
Stitch ‘n Swap
Upcycling Celebrations: A Use-What-You-Have Guide to Decorating & Gift-Giving
The Craft-a-Day Book: 30 Projects to Make with Recycled Materials


I find this to be cool https://lordofmaps.com/products/kentucky

Now check out Lord of the RingsKentucky and ebooks about maps.

Deborah Wesley/Library Associate, Local History & Genealogy Dept.:

Making memorable traditional memories…when I lived out of town and would come in for the holidays, I would always take my young niece and nephews to the Cincinnati Museum Center and Krohn Conservatory.  We’d make a day of it and I have lots of pictures to look back on.  They’d look forward to it, besides it gave their parents time to shop and help Santa out.

Also, I like to give kids subscriptions to magazines like National Wildlife Federation’s Ranger Rick with 3 versions appropriate for ages 0-12 years.  As I kid I loved getting mail, and the magazine not only encourages reading, but also, teaches them about animals and environmental current issues.
Now checkout ebooks on butterflies for kids and science/history for adults!

April/Erlanger Branch Programming Coordinator:

A couple of years ago, my brother said he would like a photo book with pictures of the houses our parents and grandparents had lived in over the years.  It was a labor of love tracking down old photos from different family members, especially since several of the houses are no longer standing.  I completed it in time for Christmas this year.  I uploaded the photos to the Walgreen’s web site and used this photo book.   I also used the Canva web site to create an image for my photo book’s front cover.

Dig deeper on Ancestry then research the past in newspapers and more. 

Lisa/Human Resources:

I got a jar opener a few years ago.  I used it this morning!  It’s wonderful for anyone but especially for folks or seniors who have difficulty opening jars! Other things I’ve been finding useful are an iPad holder, grabber, and a long-handled lotion applicator for your back.

Now check out these magazines for around the house:
Reader’s Digest
Family Handyman
This Old House
Country Style

Lauren/ Programming: I like to make shower steamers and sugar scrub. Not only are they super easy to make, they use soothing essential oils that are good for sinus issues and headache troubles. They’re easy to put together, smell great, and make wonderful holiday gifts! https://fb.watch/28Yp47njeU/


Sugar Scrub-

4 parts white sugar

2 parts green tea

1 part coconut oil (melted)


2 parts brown sugar

1 part coconut oil (melted)

1 squeeze honey

1/2 tsp of essential oils per cup of mixture


Blend all ingredients until scrub looks whipped and all ingredients are incorporated, but the sugar is still gritty. Will thicken as it cools all the way down. Load into an airtight jar for storage.

Shower Steamers-

2 parts baking soda

1 part citric acid

2-3 sprays of witch hazel

1/2 tsp of essential oils per cup of mixture (max)

Blend baking soda, citric acid and essential oils, then spray the witch hazel onto the mixture one spritz at a time until the consistency is similar to wet sand. Pack into a muffin tin or silocone mold and allow to dry for 10-12 hours (depending on the humidity of your home). Pop out of molds and use immediately in the corner of the shower (away from the constant spray from the tap) or wrap in a small gift bag and tie with a ribbon to brighten someone’s holiday!

Need more gift ideas? Check out the library’s Facebook page for recorded programs and YouTube for the library’s craft ideas. If you have a Kenton County Public Library card check out the Creativebug site for thousands of craft and art how-to lessons. The Library’s Foundation is also offering Book Gift Baskets. These one of a kind baskets are wrapped and ready to go. For details visit, Book Basket Fundraiser 2020 – Kenton County Public Library (kentonlibrary.org)

Now find more great homemade recipes of all sorts.

Compiled by Robin Klaene, Public Relations Director. Book suggestions compiled by Ann Schoenenberger, MLIS, Digital Librarian. 

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