It’s a COVID Christmas & I’ve Got 18 Thoughtful Gift Basket Ideas for You

This post is full of baskets on boxes on baskets. I am sharing my best gift basket/box ideas in an effort to mend personalization with connection during this very strange holiday season. #GivingOverGathering

[It’s been some time since I last wrote here, so please excuse the lengthy intro I devised as I took to my keyboard with rusty yet eager blogging hands. I’m very happy to share this with you.]

I remember writing one of my first blog posts 99 Unique Things To Do in Quarantine and wondering how long the post would remain relevant.

It was April when I began writing it so I expected that it would nestle deep into the blog archive around the fall. As of 2 days ago, that post still remains my most successful pin on Pinterest with thousands of impressions monthly.

It seems like quarantine is getting longer and the creative pursuit to overcome it is becoming stale. Virtual happy hours are dwindling and aggressive binge-watchers have watched it all. The reality is that the cause, the pandemic, has remained, so what do we do?

A grim Holiday season awaits, can it be resurrected?

I’m not going to have the perfect answer to that nor one that applies to everyone who reads this, but here’s how I'm looking at it this year.

You know how hokey Christmas movies have these fantastical plot lines that somehow circle back to the ultimate importance of love, friendship, and family? I think we need some of that this Holiday season.

The quarantine woes have brought the unique, wacky plot – a definite Hallmark Christmas movie in the making – so our job is to fill in the proper cinematic ending no matter what the circumstances may be with socially-distant cue card confessions, a friendly drive-by to support your struggling pal George, or a humble celebration as your heart grows 3 sizes.

I think we need to embrace the wonder and love that comes with the season; to step out of our own desires and ask “what can I do for someone else to make them feel loved?

I haven’t been sharing my gift brainstorming ideas on social because a lot of the people receiving the gifts… are probably reading this. However, in this post, I want to share some gift ideas to get you excited and, frankly, thinking about what you can do for someone else.

All month long I will be sharing holiday ideas on AOAT social media accounts, but here is my most substantial idea thread with just enough time for you to prepare. And by prepare, I mean purchase items before the shipping delays rock this unprecedented holiday season.

Without further a rant, please enjoy my 18 Holiday Gift Basket Ideas.


I think the perfect gift idea for this holiday season is a themed-gift basket (or box!).

Creating this for someone special marries gift giving with personal connection, something that will definitely be lacking this year without the traditional gatherings.

To make life easier for you, I perused the depths of the mommy-blogger internet and devoted precious shower thoughts to create this unique list. I think it’s pretty ballin’... but I’ll let you decide.

**As you read through this list, think of the personal touches you can make to up your gift-giving game. If the basket idea suggests you include a mug, make it one with the recipients face on it – or, even better, your beautifully horrifying face.

1. Breakfast in a Basket

Think: Pancake mix, a whisk, fancy syrup, good coffee

Ace’s Take: I did this for my sister’s wedding gift but with a twist. I knew that my soon-to-be brother-in-law had quite the Star Wars obsession, so I included a Millennium Falcon waffle iron. It was pretty great.

My sister ironically sent this picture to me last night. How awesome is this?!

2. Cozy Fix

Think: (what you’d want when listening to Taylor Swift’s Folklore album) A warm drink, mug, cozy blanket, fresh candle, string lights, maybe even Taylor Swift’s Folklore album

3. Guilty Pleasures

Think: Chocolate-covered anything, Netflix gift card, Chick Fil A gift card (ooh!) along with an in-car sauce holder for the Chick Fil A sauce - *mic drop*

4. Gift Cards Galore

The idea is to create a basket of sorts filled with gift cards to all of the recipient’s favorite places. It does not need to be extreme.

Think: Dunkin’, Wawa, Marshall's, any small businesses in the recipient’s local area

My sister made this gift card basket look like a flower bouquet!

5. Treat Yo’ Self

Think: A face mask, bath bubbles, slippers, a Good Patch, champagne

6. Movie Night in a Box

Think: chocolate bars, a movie classics scratch-off poster, that good ol’ tri-flavored popcorn tin

7. Wine.

Think: WINE, a personalized wine glass, a bottle opener, wine glass charms like these Friends-themed ones (this seller also makes the Office and Harry Potter charms!)

8. Quarantine University

Send your lovingly washed-up college pals some school memorabilia this holiday season to remember the good ol' days.

Think: the recipient’s college logo on a t-shirt, pajama pants, etc. as well as nods to the university’s traditions (I went to PSU, so I would include Herlocher’s Dipping Mustard and Ye Olde College Diner Grilled Stickies.)

9. Charcuterie To Go

Think: cheese, meat, toppings, wine, a board – pretty straight forward but the customization of ingredients is what makes it special!

Check out my Charcuterie Board post: Welcoming the Ace Community with Fancy Cheese for tips and inspiration!

10. Date Night in a Basket

Think: A Hello Fresh gift card with a dinner for 2 credit so the couple can make dinner together, snazzy wine, brownies, funny gag gifts

11. A Day in Quarantine Survival Kit

It would be easy enough to just repeat #2 quite honestly, but here are some different ideas.

Think: Hand sanitizer, TP, personalized masks, a puzzle, a funny tee like this

12. Promote a Hobby: Candle Making

This is specific but you can make any kind of hobby basket. Here's some ideas for candle making, specifically.

Think: scented oils, wicks, jars, wax, a metal pitcher, a cooking thermometer

I had a wonderful experience purchasing my candle making supplies through Candle Science.

13. S'mores-gasbord

Think: S’mores ingredients including Reese’s, steel skewers, and a portable tabletop fire pit like this

14. Work from Home Aid

Think: blue light blocking glasses, a headset, a dinner subscription gift card like Hello Fresh, a WFH Bingo board (you can make this – get creative!)

15. It's Cocktail Time!

Think: the proper cup for the recipient’s favorite cocktail, a fun ice cube tray like this, cocktail recipe book

16. Tea, Please.

Think: a high-quality tea assortment, a personalized mug, a teapot, good honey, a mug warmer (because if they’re like me, my tea always goes cold before I can finish)

17. Girls Night In...a Basket

*Cue OG Miley Cyrus "GNO"*

This is a cute idea for a roommate. You’re both quarantined together, so give them something you both can do together.

Think: wine, PJs, a funny game like F*** Marry Kill, ripple potato chips and cream cheese for snacking like queens

18. There's No Place Like Home for the Holidays

This is perfect for a loved one that moved away or can't come home for the holidays. Send a little home to them!

Think: memorabilia from your home town/city, classic snacks from the area (or pantry staples from your childhood for family), a framed picture together

There are A LOT more Ace ideas where that came from! Check out my 22 Heartfelt Gift Ideas from the Ace Sisters on the blog now.

Given more time, I could keep coming up with these basket ideas. The possibilities are truly endless, especially as you think of ways to customize a theme to your recipient(s).

These baskets/boxes will certainly make the person on the receiving end feel loved, and, at the very least, it will make someone feel like they exist during this tough, lonely time.

I hope this inspires you to bring some cheer to your family, friends, co-workers, and neighbors this year. AND I hope that giving you the little push to get creative with your gift giving will bring you some holiday cheer, too.

I know these days have begun to really drag, but you’ve got to keep pushing forward. What better time of year is there to find some peace, encouragement, and promise?

It was said by poet Alexander Smith that “Christmas is the day that holds all time together.” With the year we’ve had, this holiday season quite possibly could be what holds our society together.

Make it fresh, fun, considerate, and thoughtful. Happy Holidays, Aces.

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