Gift Ideas for Crowded Nest Awareness Day

A quirky holiday celebrated on June 12th honors parents who long for empty nest syndrome. Some of these folks have given up their new sewing room or study to boomerang children who have lost a job or haven't yet found one and live at home. Other parents are finding space for their own beloved parents, their grandchildren or even both. Here are some gift ideas for Crowded Nest Awareness Day:

For parents

  • Help with home maintenance is a thoughtful gift. Hire a few hours of maid service, landscaping service or handyman time to help with the chores. And don't forget to pitch in yourself!
  • Gifts of home maintenance supplies like paper towels, laundry soap, shampoo, and dishwasher tablets show that you don't want to be a burden. Adult children might buy upscale soaps and shampoos for parents and more basic products for themselves.
  • A card or poem that expresses your gratitude would be lovely, too. Parents will be touched to know they have raised a child who knows how to say thank you gracefully.

For boomerang children

  • Basic, appropriate clothing for job interviews makes a fitting gift for someone who needs to lose the school-child or collegiate look. Similarly, a becoming haircut and a tidy manicure help make the right impression.
  • Cooking a favorite meal or dessert is another way to cheer up a grown child. Cooking with a grown child can be a way of bonding as well.

For grandchildren

  • Excursions to a nearby park are great gifts for grandchildren. At the playground, they can run, jump and make just about all the noise they like without giving anyone a headache.
  • A playhouse in the back yard gives any child a private place that belongs to him or her alone. Children treasure their hideaways.
  • Quiet playthings like picture books and handheld games are great gifts, too. Another idea is a class at the local craft store or museum. Self expression helps children find their place in a changing world.

For grandparents

  • Consulting grandparents about decisions shows respect and love. So does respecting their privacy and autonomy as much as possible.
  • Family pictures are gifts that make grandparents smile. Gorgeous frames are great, but it's the pictures that they'll love.

In the current economy, sometimes the family home is just too crowded. The best Crowded Nest Awareness Day gift people can give each other is personal space. Parents and adult children need the privacy to think to think their own thoughts and the freedom to look at the world from their own points of view, even while surrounded by all the people they love.

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