The most wonderful time of the year is upon us, but for many, the season of giving is a nightmare of wandering through box stores and malls trying to figure out what to buy for the one you love.

Giving gifts to loved ones should not be a source of stress. I am here to help.

The first bit of advice I can offer is to stay away from the box stores and malls. Keep your nose out of Amazon and the other online box stores. Those sites can be convenient, but gift-giving should involve more thought and personalization.

Some Uniquely Massachusetts Gift Ideas For The Holidays
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Almost anything you want to buy for almost everyone on your gift-giving list – including locally-made products – can be found online. That means it's deliverable, but make it something special.

Massachusetts has many unique products that are perfect for giving, and nothing personalizes a gift more than something from home. offers a "Holiday Gift Guide" with links to "local products for your holiday table or as a gift."

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The site lists Massachusetts wineries, cheesemakers, craft beverage-makers, chocolate and confectionary products, specialty "Flavors of Massachusetts" food gift baskets, flowers and plants, and more.

The site also lists winter farmer's markets near you, including those that deliver.

Some Uniquely Massachusetts Gift Ideas For The Holidays
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Most Massachusetts communities have business districts that offer unique products produced locally that make perfect gifts. As I age, I prefer gifts from the heart, such as framed photos of my favorite memories.

Scan your local or regional chamber of commerce website or visit some shops in places with special meaning to those on your shopping list.

Locally-made products or gift certificates for local restaurants, salons, shops or travel adventures are different and show you've put some thought into gifting. It's a lot less stressful than roaming the mall or surfing through Amazon.

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