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Christmas Gifts for Retired Dads - What to Buy Any Dad?

Updated on December 23, 2014

A Simple Gift for Dad

Most dads are grateful for just a simple gift.
Most dads are grateful for just a simple gift. | Source

Fathers are hard to buy for!

Do you find that your dad is hard to buy gifts for at Christmas? Or at any other time? Maybe your dad isn't, but I find that the older mine gets, the harder time I have in finding a gift for him. As fathers get older, they usually have what they need, it seems. At least my dad does.

My dad is retired, he has the things he wants, and he buys what he needs. I have become challenged as the years go by. I find it increasingly more difficult to buy things that I think he will need or like. I have brainstormed a lot, so here are some of the things I've found that my dad--and probably most dads--will like . . . at Christmas or any other time throughout the year.

Consumable Food Items for Gifts

When dads have all they need, what about buying practical gifts for them--things they can use that don't take up space. Many dads don't want or need stuff taking up room, but consumable items that they enjoy eating are always good gifts--for dads or anyone.

Does your dad like chocolates, nuts, or other snack items? My dad likes those chocolate covered cream drops. My step-dad likes any kind of nuts. Or what about coffee?

Different kinds of candies or specialty coffees are a nice gift for the man who has everything he needs. Other snacks such as beef jerky or summer sausage might be another idea that will please your dad. What about a basket of jerky, crackers, and specialty cheeses? All of these are great ideas for the dad who doesn't "need" anything.

Comfortable Slip-on Shoes for Dad

My dad has a small farm, mostly goats and chickens that he buys and sells as a hobby. The chickens lay eggs that he sells (and gives to us kids!) He is far from sedentary, as he tends to things around the house, in the barn, in the field. He is continually running in and out of the house. (My stepmother doesn't know where he is half the time.)

For many years, I would get my dad some comfortable slip-on shoes. Hmmm . . . he might be due for another pair! They're not expensive, and they are very useful. Perfect for a father always on the go!


Along with comfy shoes, socks are another practical gift for retired fathers. One year I gave my dad some diabetic-type socks that offer more support than the average sock. Although he isn't diabetic, he was pleased to try these socks.

I would think that these kind of socks would help most people as far as support goes. Heck, I might try them myself!

Warm Items: Hats and Gloves

Hats and gloves are another appropriate item for dads. My dad always throws on a hat when he goes outside. Like me, he can't stand to be cold. I'm sure he could use a few extra pairs of work gloves stashed here and there to be handy, too.

Don't count out practical items. Just some cheap jersey gloves and a knit cap will fit into any Christmas budget--and dad is sure to use them.

Mental Stimulation Activities

I never thought of my dad as one to do crossword puzzles--until he retired. Now, every time I visit, he is doing the crossword puzzle in the daily newspaper at some point. I have bought him books of crossword puzzles over the years. He started out with the easier crosswords, but, over the years, he has moved on to more difficult puzzles.

As an avid crossword puzzler, I know that the crosswords in the newspaper are more difficult than the crossword puzzle books marked as easy. The easy ones, however, are a great place to start. You might see if crosswords--or even Sudoku--are something your dad might like, even if he has shown no interest before. You might be surprised.

Crossword and other similar activities are fun and excellent ways to keep the brain stimulated.

Digital Photo Frame

How is your dad, especially if retired, with electronics? Mine can turn on the television or radio, but he couldn't do the same with a computer. Still, there are some electronics he might really get a kick out of--such as a digital photo frame.

These are great little gadgets! Dad is sure to enjoy seeing favorite pictures of his kids and grandchildren going across the screen. Make sure you set it up with all the pictures before you give it to him, however. Otherwise, this gift may stay in the box for a while.

Hobby Gifts

Does your retired father spend a lot of time out in the garden? If so, get him something to make things easier on him. A gardening kneeling pad can help make kneeling on the ground more comfortable for aging knees.

What other hobbies does your dad like? Hunting or fishing? Think of what his hobbies are. Look into what he doesn't have. Think about warm clothing for hunting. And what about a fun fishing hat for the fisherman?

Whatever your dad's hobbies are, he will appreciate getting a gift that he can use when enjoying his activities.

Final Ideas for Christmas Gifts for Dad

Tired of racking your brain for the perfect gift for your father? Try the above ideas. Or maybe there's something else your dad enjoys, such as movies or books.

Maybe a potpourri of all the above would be fun--a hat, some gloves, a crossword puzzle book, and some candies or other snacks. Stick all the items in a basket or bag, and voila! A grab bag gift is always fun, as dad will enjoy pulling out all the different things--items he can use.

Many of us become more practical in our gift-giving as we get older. We need less "stuff," preferring gifts we can really use. I know this is true with me and, of course, my parents. Get your dad something he can put to good use, and he is sure to appreciate it.

© 2013 Victoria Lynn


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    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 3 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      Me, too, Deb! I especially like the warm, fuzzy socks around Christmastime!

    • DeborahNeyens profile image

      Deborah Neyens 3 years ago from Iowa

      You can't go wrong with socks! I love to give and receive them.

    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 3 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      poetryman--You're funny! That's great!

    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 3 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      janetwrites--I hope your father likes these ideas. I think about any father would! :-)

    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 3 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      Thelma, I'm glad you got some ideas. These are the kinds of things I nearly always buy my dad now. :-)

    • poetryman6969 profile image

      poetryman6969 3 years ago

      Freshly baked cookies. Meat and sausage gift baskets. And a gag gift in a pear tree.

    • janetwrites profile image

      Janet Giessl 3 years ago from Georgia country

      Yes, it's really tough to find the right gift for your father when he gets older. I feel the same. Your gift ideas are well chosen. My father will retire in about 2 years so I might get back to your hub.

    • Thelma Alberts profile image

      Thelma Alberts 3 years ago from Germany

      Great tips. Thanks for sharing. I might have to buy one of those for my father.

    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 3 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      Thanks, Rose! I like practical and consumable gifts the older I get. I mean, how much stuff do we NEED? I have way too much stuff, but Icould use some practical things for sure. Thanks for commenting!

    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 3 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      younghopes--I hadn't really thought about it either until I started writing the hub and thinking about my own dad. I hope it's helpful for people. Thanks for reading, voting, and sharing!

    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 3 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      FlourishAnyway--I totally agree. Thanks!

    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 3 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      Vellur--That's what I'm doing this year. A bag of several different things--food and crossword puzzles included!!

    • randomcreative profile image

      Rose Clearfield 3 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      You have a great range of suggestions here! There is something for everyone. I like the idea of giving both practical and consumable gifts.

    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 3 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      I agree, Faith Reaper! Practical gifts are the best, I think. Thank for your comments!

    • younghopes profile image

      Shadaan Alam 3 years ago from India

      lovely, inever thought about gifts for retired dads,voted up. shared

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Good gift ideas. Dads are always so hard to buy for.

    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 3 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      Thanks, vocalcoach! I still need to follow my own advice and pick up a couple of things for my dad!

    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 3 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      teaches--Unfortunately my dad is not tech savvy. There are no apps for his TV. LOL. I'm sure many dads are, however! :-)

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 3 years ago from Dubai

      Great gift guide for buying gifts for dad. A potpourri of all of the above will be really great. Voted up.

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Great ideas here, Vicki! Men are hard to buy for indeed, especially as they get older and have everything they need.

      Up and more and sharing

      Blessings, Faith Reaper

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 3 years ago from Nashville Tn.

      What excellent ideas you have shared with us Victoria. I'll be using a couple of these. Thanks so much and Happy Holidays to you, my dear friend ~ Audrey

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 3 years ago

      You can't go wrong with these ideas. The puzzle idea is a great one, an app version if they are tech savvy.

    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 3 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      Kathryn--I, too, think these would work for many--even most--dads. Yes, by all means, I would love for you to add a link to your hub. Thanks so much! I need to check out your ideas for my boyfriend! Thanks!

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image

      Kathryn 3 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      These are great ideas! I enjoy trying to find things my father would like. He isn't retired, but these ideas work well for him, too.

      Thanks for sharing this with us, and have a wonderful idea!

      If you don't mind, I would like to add a link of this to my hub on ideas for gift ideas for boyfriends (under a category for gift ideas for men).

      Have a great day.

      ~ Kathryn

    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 3 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      LOL! That's funny,Bill. I know what you mean. :-)

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Great ideas, Vicki! I might be interested in some of them if I ever get to retire. :)