Before my sister-in-law had kids, she pointed out that because we had kids, it made gift giving much easier (specifically to the hard-to-buy for grandparents). Yes, between my husband and me, we still have three grandparents living, and it's hard to always come up for options for them.
So, what has worked for me is to plaster my children's faces on something, and call it a gift. One that I particularly like is a one page laminated calendar that you can order very cheaply at any Kinkos. I like to add magnet strips to the back, and it's perfect for the refrigerator. This has been a hit with our parents and grandparents alike.
Another stroke of genius which was very well received is these coasters. Remember that they take time, so you should think of what you might want to order now if you don't want to pay for quick rush service, which I ended up doing this particular year. I liked these, because I could select six different pictures, and they come in a neat little stand (which I do not see listed, so you might call and ask or search for another company), which is perfect for display. Would you not have loved to receive coasters with these cute pictures as my family did in 2004?
I just saw that dotPhoto is offering free shipping all October, and they make all the mugs, T-shirts, etc (even a chocolate photo card!).
Framed portraits are always well-received as well. Generally, you are going to be passing our portraits at your own personal expense anyway, so why not give them as a Christmas, Mother's Day or Father's Day gift instead? Something requiring much more coordination, especially if your family is spread across the miles, is a "cousin picture." Try to get all the cousins of one particular side together for a picture. This picture was a delight to everyone who received it for Mother's Day. Hmmm, we might need to try to make another appointment at Thanksgiving. . . . This idea is of course not new or original. This picture was taken in 1973: me, sister in the middle, cousin on the right.
What about you? What sweet memoirs of childhood have you given or received as a priceless gift? What unique, original or fun photo gifts do you enjoy?
What is the Gift Idea Exchange? See the post here for the info and other gift ideas.