The holidays are here and all you see is hurry and hassle. It's not too late to rejoice in this season of love and celebration. I am here to help! Below is a list of really great gift ideas for the people on your list, be they naughty or nice.

  • Deliver one solid compliment to every person in your company and in your family. Do not follow the compliment with the word “but” or “however.”

  • Share one thing you wish you had known when you were 21 years old with someone 21 years old. Keep the advice under 15 words.

  • Take your employees to the mall and give each $50 to spend on themselves. Give them a time limit and require that they meet back at the food court to show off their purchases. (Thanks to Bill Raymond for this good idea!)

  • Scratch your dog behind the ears.

  • Ditto for your husband, wife or significant other.

  • Tell someone whom you admire that you admire them and why.

  • Decorate the office with poinsettias and Christmas cacti.

  • Write a passionate letter to the editor. The world is well served when folks share their opinions.

  • Edit the letter before you send it. Shorten every sentence. Eliminate all swear words. Delete the generalities.

  • Re-gift without guilt.

  • Mend a broken relationship. Send a note taking responsibility for the rift. Say you are sorry and expect nothing in return.

  • Treat yourself to a new book, then pass it on. Suggestions - for business philosophy, anything by Jim Rohn; for self awareness, check out Anthony DiMello; for humor, anything by Dave Barry; for inspiration, pick up “Endurance” by Alfred Lansing; and for writing, try “The Piano Tuner” by Daniel Mason.

  • Tell your momma you love her.

  • Tell your daddy “Thanks.”

  • Turn someone on to a perfect piece of music.

  • Play a video game with someone 13 years or younger.

  • Give blood. Have you been meaning to do it? You and me both. Let's contribute before the year is over.

  • Survey your collection of antique plumbing parts and tools and give some of it to a fellow collector or a newcomer to the industry.

  • Put Dean Martin Christmas carols on the office CD player.

  • When you go on service calls, leave an extra pair of shoe covers as a gift.

  • Tip heavy. Usually a dollar or two more is all it takes to be a big tipper. That's a nice reputation to have.

  • Be the designated driver.

  • Gift anonymously. Be inspired by the 12 Days of Christmas. Each day, for 12 days, give a gift that corresponds to the classic Christmas song. For example, on the first day, a basket of pears. And on the second day, two Turtle Wax car care products. You get the idea. The fun part is delivering the gifts. Don't reveal your identity. Let your secret friend believe in Santa. (Thanks to Lynn Walters for this really fun idea.)

  • Give a scrapbook. One year for Christmas, my mom gave each of her five kids a personalized scrapbook of pictures, school artwork and sports accomplishments. What a lovely gift of time and thought and love.

  • Baby-sit for an overwhelmed new parent. Three hours of kid-free time is a priceless gift.

  • Give an appreciative thank you to folks who give you a gift. Even if you didn't get them anything.

  • Take an on-call shift for the plumber with the most tenure at your shop.

  • Answer the phone, “Happy Holidays!”

  • Offer to take an older friend shopping. Hold on to them on icy steps and sidewalks.

  • Rent the video “Scrooged” starring Bill Murray and make your kids watch it with you.

  • Dig through your closet and create a costume box for a kid who would appreciate that kind of thing.

  • Who doesn't like a pair of thick wool socks?

  • Put a dollar in the Salvation Army pot every time you pass.

  • Write down five reasons you love your husband, wife or significant other, and put the list under his or her pillow.

  • Give five under $5. Find and wrap five gifts totaling no more than $5. It makes for a big pile under the tree and encourages creativity by the gift-giver. (Thanks to Gail Gudell for this favorite idea!)

  • Open presents one at a time on Christmas morning and oooh and ahhh over each one.

  • Set up a jigsaw puzzle and spend time together assembling it.

  • Does each plumber at your company have their own subscription to PM? Make sure they do!

  • You can't go wrong with a mixed tape or CD.

  • Offer education reimbursement for training classes - recipient's choice.

  • Identify a chip that you have been shouldering and choose to let it go.

  • Leave candy canes behind on every service call.

  • Make it a point to buy something from every kid selling something for a fundraiser. Then, give the candles, candy, wrapping paper, caramel corn, etc. to the supply house counter guys.

  • Buy two tickets to an event that your spouse or significant other would enjoy (think Monster Truck rally or Josh Groban concert) and go with them willingly.

  • Do you have a particularly flattering picture of someone? Frame it and give it to them.

  • Put a new, nice, just-right quality hand tool in each of your plumber's trucks as a surprise.

  • Buy an extra toy and deliver to the Toys for Tots program. Wrap it, label it and drop it off at Wal-Mart.

  • Scan your closet for extra coats and take them to the Salvation Army.

  • Go shopping at the high-end stores with your kids. Think Versace, Armani, Tiffany's and BMW. Don't buy anything. Just create an appreciation of nice things. Assure them that they can buy those things themselves someday if they want and work.

  • Have you ever adopted a family for Christmas? I bet someone at your church knows someone in need this season. Find out names, sizes, hobbies and wish lists for all family members. As a family, or as a company, commit to creating a memorable Christmas for a family who isn't going to pull it off this year without some help.

  • Give the gift of laughter. If you can't remember jokes, here's one for you.

    A new young monk arrives at the monastery. He is assigned to help the other monks copy the old canons and laws of the church by hand.

    He notices, however, that all of the monks are copying from copies, not from the original manuscript. So, the new monk goes to the head abbot to question this, pointing out that if someone made even a small error in the first copy, it would never be picked up. In fact, that error would be continued in all of the subsequent copies.

    The head monk said, “We have been copying from the copies for centuries, but you make a good point, my son.”

    So, he goes down into the dark caves underneath the monastery where the original manuscript is held in a locked vault that hasn't been opened for hundreds of years.

    Hours go by and nobody sees the old abbot. So, the young monk gets worried and goes downstairs to look for him. He sees him banging his head against the wall. His forehead is all bloody and bruised and he is crying uncontrollably.

    The young man asks the old abbot, “What's wrong Father?”

    With a choking voice, the old abbot replies, “The word is 'celebrate.'” Scrap the Scrooge act. Celebrate the holiday season in the spirit of peace, love and laughter! I am grateful for you. Happy Holidays!