November 2006 - Here we are. Just a few weeks out from that time of year officially known as "the holiday season." I'm thinking that I need to start thinking about what gifts to get for the people who will get them.

I gave up shopping – you know, actually going to stores – a few years ago. Forget the crowded malls; forget being annoyed by annoying sales people. This Santa likes to shop alone! And, with so many catalogues arriving at my door, every holiday wish is just a click or a call away.

For all things practical yet stylish, we have Solutions. As billed, this catalogue is where you can find products that make life easier. For example, on p. 3 we have see-though chair protectors. These are basically sheets of plastic that can be put over the seats of your dining room chairs to save them from spill-prone holiday guests. The price? $11.95 each, but it goes down if you buy more than one. And, you know you're gonna need more than one, right?

Or, how about this. On p. 47, Solutions offers a cover to put over that rectangle box of tissues. The cover looks like a Polynesian tiki head. When the tiki head cover is put over the box of tissues, it looks like the tissues are coming out of the nose. Get it? Tissues? Coming out of the nose? At any rate, this gadget guarantees that tissues won't look out of place anywhere. Seriously. That's what it says on p. 47. At just $19.95, the price is nothing to sneeze at.

For the more upscale shopper, Eximious of London offers elegance with an English touch. Adults, babies, pets. There's something extravagant for everyone. For example, wouldn't your dog just love to dig into some Poochi Sushi, as seen on p. 43. It’s a takeout tray filled with nine all-natural treats rolled up to look like sushi. For $21.50, who can resist?

For him, there's the $95.00 golf shoe bag on p. 28. The bag is made of rich cognac suede and luxuriously lined with faux fur (matching, of course). On the side, there's a leather medallion with room for up to three initials. Keep those initials handy for her gift. Featured on p. 34, it's a box of monogrammed guest soaps shaped like ivory pillows and gently scented with citrus and florals. Just $42.50. So, go ahead. Get two.

Treat your trendy friends and relatives to something from Brookstone. As stated on the cover of the catalogue, give "the gift of innovation." You'll find hi-tech bedding, hi-tech clothing and hi-tech exercise equipment. You can even get a portable sauna (p. 23) for what may be a very reasonable price of $4,995.00. The $300.00 shipping fee is extra, of course. Can't afford that? How about an authentic game of Pac-Man, Ms. Pac-Man or Space Invaders (pp. 50-51)? Just $2,995.00 and no payments for 12 months!

Make sure to order early!