Fun Gifts to Send in the Mail – Kimball Corner

We’re moving into the holiday season, which means that gifting is on the mind. Not all our loved ones are close, however, which means that often gifting has to take place over many miles. This can be a wonderful opportunity to shine — send them “gift packs,” themed gift boxes and special sentiments that they’ll be delighted to receive.

It doesn’t really get a whole lot better than discovering an unexpected gift at the mail. With the plethora of bills, responsibilities and junk that often arrives via post, isn’t it lovely to receive something fun? This is especially true in recent times, when everyday life has seemed, well, a bit gloomy. Go ahead — make somebody’s day. Send a small gift and spread some joy.

Looking to surprise that someone you love with a “just because” gift? Searching for ideas for fun gifts to send in the mail for the holidays? We’ve gathered some of our favorite ideas here that will make anyone’s day.

Themed Boxes

For friends, family and loved ones who love their baths, consider putting together a “Spa Day” basket or gift box and include items that they can use to relax and unwind. Include a bottle of deliciously scented bubble bath, a bath pouf or loofah, a box of relaxing chamomile tea, some cookies and a personalized mug in which they can enjoy their beverage while soaking. Consider our popular bath pouf belt with handles, which allows you to clean those hard-to-reach places (like the back) with ease. Add a special bar of gentle soap, such as our goat milk based manuka honey soap from Natures® CommonScents. Our Personalized Tea Bag Mug is perfect to send in a “Spa Day” gift basket — it is easy to personalize with your loved one’s name and provides a side “pocket” that holds a used tea bag after it has seeped for the preferred amount of time. We think they’ll thank you for the reminder that they should stop, take a moment to themselves and relax.

Gifts for Hobbyists

Everyone has a friend who has a special activity that they enjoy. Whether it is knitting, crocheting, coloring, painting or puzzles, this fact can be a great starting point for a gift to send in the mail. Take an activity or hobby that someone loves to do and create a thoughtful gift or gift box to send. For example: know someone who loves to color? Get a new coloring book along with a set of special gel pens, new colored pencils or crayons. There’s something wonderful, thrilling and inspiring about receiving brand-new coloring utensils. Miles Kimball has great options for coloring books in our Hobbies and Books department — check out our selection of coloring books available that will keep your friends and family busy. Puzzles are also a great gift to send in the mail. See a new, interesting puzzle that someone on your gift-giving list would love here in our Puzzles and Trivia nook? Choose a new puzzle to send and include some puzzle glue so that they can preserve the piece that they spent so many hours on. Have someone who is looking for a new way to create something beautiful? Don’t miss our Brain Games Sticker by Number books. These popular books can be something to send to a coloring book fanatic so they can try out something new and exciting.

Gardening Glory

For a friend or family member who just can’t wait for gardening season, consider gathering some unique gardening gifts to send. Add some seeds, wind chimes or other outdoor garden décor and garden accessories to your gift box. Check out our Gardening Tools and lawn tools to see if there is something that they could both love and incorporate into their gardening care routine, such as a new pair of gardening shoes or gloves. For a thoughtful gift, consider one of our garden flags — many which can be personalized. Create a seasonal gift box and add a garden flag to it that corresponds with the season. These quick and easy ways to incorporate movement and color into gardens are a tried-and-true favorite here and are highly recommended here at Kimball Corner. Consider seasonal gifts with some unique yard stakes and figurines — a delight to add to any garden. Decorative garden stakes are also a quick and easy way to brighten up a space and to make great gifts for the outdoor garden décor enthusiast on your gift list. Think seeds are not too interesting and not that exciting to send as gifts in the mail? Think again. Check out our Plants and Garden Rolls, available at Miles Kimball. Developed by a horticulturist, they can be tailored to interests, such as wildflowers or butterflies. They can also be bought for some specific microclimate needs, such as shady areas, sunny areas or ground cover. Of course, everyone loves hanging flowerpots — especially when they’re low maintenance. Check out our realistic artificial flower hanging baskets that come perfectly assembled and ready to hang. These gems are ideal for spaces that are notoriously inhospitable to plants and flowers.

Just Because

Enter into your shopping trips, even to the grocery store, keeping your eyes open for specials and sales. See something that “reminds” you of someone? Buy it. There doesn’t need to be a reason; sometimes the most unexpected surprises are the best. Add a note with a personalized note card or stationery that explains why the item you bought made you think of him or her. These little “just because” gifts don’t have to be much: decorative napkins and pretty paper plates, cute notepads, coffee mugs, pretty journals, interesting-looking books or home décor. Sometimes the best places to find fun gifts are in the checkout lanes. See a magazine you think a friend will love? A decorative lip balm? A travel-sized lotion or cute hand sanitizer keychain? Sometimes these little gifts will cost a bit more to mail than they were to purchase; however, the happiness that these little gifts will inspire will mean so much. We guarantee it. Check out the Special Offers or Sale sections of our departments at Miles Kimball to see if anything here “reminds” you of someone you love. It’s easy to spread love and happiness when you get creative with gifts you send in the mail. Have you received a spectacular in the mail? Share a memorable gift you received in the mail below.

Ideas for Gorgeous & Electricity-Free Outdoor Lighting

During the warmer months of the year, your yard naturally becomes more of a focal point for activity and entertaining. Gardening and watching your flowers bloom is an enjoyable hobby, of course, as you proudly behold your efforts lead to a gorgeous, colorful yard display. If you have young children, chances are they’re playing in the back yard, so you find yourself out there with them much more frequently. It can be so satisfying and pleasurable spending time in an attractive, well-tended yard.

When the sunsets and all is dark, however, we may not be quite as struck by the beauty of our landscape. Fortunately, thanks to today’s advanced solar technology, there are many exciting options and ideas for lighting the front of your house, deck, patio, stairs and back yard. Not only can you be creative, but you can add illumination without having to worry about electricity costs and hazards.

Outdoor Solar LED Lighting Basics

With the development of LED (Light Emitting Diode) bulbs, especially ones that run on solar power, outdoor lighting possibilities have expanded enormously. LED’s produce light through the use of a semiconductor material filled with electrons. When an electric current hits this semiconductor, the electrons move to fill electron “holes” in the material, and energy is released in photons of light. Basically, LED technology has made it possible to produce light using much less energy than standard incandescent bulbs.

Outdoor lighting using solar-powered LED bulbs is comprised of a solar panel, battery, control electronics and a light fixture. During the day, the battery collects energy from the sun’s rays, which is stored in the battery. After the sun goes down, the electronics trigger charging to stop and the light to go on. The fixture will radiate light until either there’s no charge left in the battery, or the sun comes up.

With these lights, which don’t rely on electricity and therefore need no plugs or outlets, you can basically place them wherever you want that’s accessible to sunlight. Areas that receive several hours of direct daytime sun are ideal. Outdoor lighting ideas include using them to light the walkway to your front door, illuminate special features of your yard, or add of touch of art to your garden and patio, as discussed below.

Outdoor Lighting Ideas

1. Sparkling StringsSolar LED String Lights are an excellent way to bring more light to your yard and patio after nightfall. They come in an assortment of hues — many are designed to automatically rotate among a menu of colors — and are made with a weather-resistant battery and solar panel, thereby affording electricity-free outdoor illumination. When used as pathway lights along the walkway to your doorstep, they not only look elegant, but help make it safer for anyone visiting in the evening. They can also be used at the base of the riser or under the nose of any steps outside your door, making for a safer stairway climb.

Another way to add accents to your yard with solar string lights is to place them along the top railing of a deck, raised patio or enclosed hot tub. It’s surprising how much ambience is added by these softly lit strings when you’re enjoying a warm summer evening relaxing in your back yard.

2. Sophisticated Stakes – Another type of outdoor solar LED fixture that comes in a variety of designs — traditional, modern and everything-in-between — are stake-mount path and accent lights. With the versatility of these electricity-free fixtures, you can highlight just about anything you like in your outdoor landscape, including walkways, plant-bed borders, koi ponds, unique plants, outdoor sculptures or other artwork. Have some fun being creative and experimenting with lighting effects.

For those who like a more dramatic look, try installing solar-powered spotlights aimed at higher-profile features of your property, such as unusual trees, boulders, and large fountains or sculptures. Spotlights can be strategically placed in front of these structures to provide artistic silhouettes against an exterior wall, like the front of a residence. Other types of fixtures provide all the art themselves in the form of eye-catching, multicolored light displays.

3. Dazzling Drops – Try using strings of droplet-shaped LED bulbs to add a delightful, whimsical appearance to trees, trellises or pergolas. Most solar LED strings, including this type, automatically switch on at night and return to charging mode during the day. However, there are some that include remote controls to adjust brightness and timing.

4. White Light Warning – Besides being decorative and preventing slip-and-fall accidents, outdoor lighting can serve a very important security function. Illuminating areas of darkness deters thieves or vandals, who depend on shadows and low visibility to mask their criminal activities. With solar-powered LED convenience, fixtures triggered by motion detectors shine bright light on outdoor areas — which unlit, would leave you and your valuables vulnerable to theft.

Other ways to combine outdoor illumination with added protection against unwanted visitors are solar-powered fixtures made to deter nighttime animals or insects. Equipped with motion detectors and ultra-sonic frequency dischargers, animal-repelling fixtures discourage foxes, cats, pigeons, rodents and other animal trespassers using light and high-frequency sound. Solar-powered LED insect zappers concurrently emit white light to enhance visibility for people, and purple UV light to kill pests.

By exploring today’s outdoor lighting options, you can affordably highlight the most attractive features of your garden or patio. So, when blazing hot summer days cool down to more pleasant evenings, you can unwind on your patio surrounded by enchanting illumination. Better yet, share the de-“light” by inviting family or friends over for an evening get-together.

Your Guide to Decorative Garden Stakes

Decorative yard stakes are a fantastic way to add a little something extra to your lawn or garden. You can use them to celebrate holidays, welcome the seasons or let your neighbors know some of your interests. Take a look at these fun and cute garden stakes ideas.

Holiday Stakes

Decorative garden stakes are perfect for celebrating holidays, especially the less prominent ones. Christmas and Halloween involve a lot of decorating to begin with, but what about all the other holidays that pop up throughout the year?

Easter is a holiday that usually isn’t decorated for, but Easter yard stakes can bring some more color to your garden or lawn. With pastel colors and cute characters, they’re sure to catch the eye of anyone passing by. Check out these Easter bunny garden stakes that can be used to greet your guests. 

During July, you can show your patriotic side with some red, white and blue. Garden stakes are a great way to show your pride and celebrate America. You can go a more lively route with something like these patriotic dog stakes or you can choose something on the sophisticated side like these banner star stakes (to the right).

For St. Patrick’s Day, you can bring the luck of the Irish to your house with a personalized leprechaun stake with your last name on it. No matter the holiday, you can find the right garden stake to celebrate with.

Seasonal Decorative Plant Stakes

You can decorate your front yard with garden stakes that fit the season. Spring yard stakes are the perfect addition to your garden because they let you have flowers on display while waiting for your own to grow. Some good choices are tulip stakes or daisy stakes. They will bring some life to your garden and be a preview of what’s to come. If you don’t want flowers, some hummingbird stakes (to the left) will look beautiful in front of your house.

In the summer months, dress up your lawn or garden with beachy garden stakes like these summer boy and girl stakes. They’re a fun way to welcome the warmer months and kick off beach season. If you’re into a summer sport like golf, you can get this golf cart stake featuring solar power headlights that automatically turn on when it gets dark.

For autumn, this harvest truck stake will bring some fall flavor to your yard with the bright pumpkin a red truck bed. Plus, the wheels on the truck spin in the breeze for extra fun. You can swap this yard stake out with an adorable witch stake around Halloween. 

Garden Stakes That Light Up

If you want to add some extra light outside your home, solar-powered decorative plant stakes have you covered. These stakes soak up energy from the sun during the day to power their bulbs once night begins to fall. 

A set of solar balloon stakes can make your yard more festive. Place them along a walkway to light up a path for visitors and guests. You could also go with a color-changing butterfly stake (to the right). It comes with four butterflies that you can adjust with its flexible wires. Best of all, the butterflies put on a show by changing colors. For something more rustic, this metal tractor stake will provide a soft glow with its solar headlights.

Yard Stakes with a Car Theme

Garden stakes can also be terrific decorations for car enthusiasts. There’s no better way to show off your love for classic cars than through some lawn and garden decor.

This antique car stake not only features the font view of an antique car, but it also comes with solar-powered headlights and a welcome sign on the stake. It’s a fantastic way to greet anyone who might stop by your home.

For a sleeker design, a classic car stake is a good choice that will bring some nostalgia to your yard. This stake comes in a beautiful light blue color and the solar headlights turn on automatically at dusk.

The vintage car stake has an iconic yellow design that everyone will recognize. It’s a sturdy decoration that will help you remember the good old days every time you see it. 

CHAPTER 1. Loomings

Call me Ishmael. Some years ago—never mind how long precisely—having little or no money in my purse, and nothing particular to interest me on shore, I thought I would sail about a little and see the watery part of the world. It is a way I have of driving off the spleen and regulating the circulation.

Whenever I find myself growing grim about the mouth; whenever it is a damp, drizzly November in my soul; whenever I find myself involuntarily pausing before coffin warehouses, and bringing up the rear of every funeral I meet; and especially whenever my hypos get such an upper hand of me, that it requires a strong moral principle to prevent me from deliberately stepping into the street, and methodically knocking people’s hats off—then, I account it high time tozz get to sea as soon as I can.

Animal Garden Stakes

Some of the most popular garden stake designs include animals. With choices from farm animals to pets, there’s something for everyone. 

You can stick to the classics with options like a cow yard stake. This stake will look right at home on your lawn. It also comes with a back hook so you can display it on a wall or fence. Another option is a set of duck family stakes. The momma duck comes with three little ducklings, making this decoration perfect for your human family. 

You can go more fantastical with this raincoat cat stake. The whimsical design features a cat standing on two legs in a yellow raincoat and holding an umbrella over its head. As a bonus, this yard stake doubles as a rain gauge because the cat holds a little glass jar to collect water. 

For those with a flair for the dramatic, a gorgeous peacock stake will take center stage in your lawn or garden. This brightly colored stake will draw the attention of all your neighbors and have your yard looking great. 

Other Yard and Garden Decorations

Don’t stop at just garden stakes when it comes to decorating your yard. At Miles Kimball, we have a wide selection of outdoor decor to help you make your home look its best. From birdbaths to garden flags, we have what you’re looking for.