Most of us don't need a single thing. We certainly don't want more cute knickknacks to add to whatever clutter we already have on the shelves. Yet this is the time of year when others think they need to give us presents. Sometimes they'll ask in advance what we'd like to have, and we can breathe a sigh of relief when they do.
So, what do we say when they ask? Here are some thoughts:
• Pay for our cable for a couple months. Or pay for our Netflix or newspaper for a whole year. Add a year to a subscription to our favorite magazine or maybe a new one for us to try out. Consider a subscription to a fruit of the month club, or one for coffee or tea.
• Spend the afternoon with us sorting a box of photos and scan them for us. Or make us a special photo album of family and grandchildren. Create a 2020 calendar or load a digital photo frame with family photos. Give us a copy of "The Book of Me," 2nd edition (Peter Pauper Press), an autobiographical journal we can fill out.
• Some things aren't fancy but can be very useful: a bathtub grab bar, a pill organizer, gift certificates to the places we go (such as movies and dinners out). Install some SnapPower Guidelights, which are wall outlets that double as nightlights — very handy — as well as a few of those closet lights.
• Load up our freezer with homemade single-meal dinners. Pay for a trip that the senior center will take, and if extra people are allowed, go with us.
The best gifts for seniors are those things that give us pleasure but are hard for us to afford, and those things that make our lives easier.