Great “Gifts” to Have As You Approach Adulthood


Lisa Alioto

16 March 2021 32 comments

As I started to approach adulthood, I noticed that the gifts that my parents bought me started to change.  They went from clothes and gift cards to much more practical gifts.  Which got me thinking, maybe I too should start preparing myself for my upcoming independence.

Here are some items that I found particularly helpful, including ones that I was glad I didn’t have to spend my meagre funds on.


If you weren’t lucky enough to get your own luggage as a child, luggage makes for great graduation or late teen birthday or graduation gift.  Usually a big expense for a young adult but a great gift item!   As we head off to college, we don’t want to be the ones lugging in our items in a half-torn bag or grandma’s old-fashioned luggage.

Having my own luggage seemed like such a cool luxury to me.  I got it in a fashionable style and with all the latest features.   I felt so “adult” toting my bags to University and on my first real “parent-free” vacation.

Shoe Bags

This one may sound ridiculously simply and silly but it’s something that I’ve used throughout University and use to this day as I go to work.  What am I talking about?   Well, when I was graduating from secondary school my mother sewed together (in purple cloth – my favourite colour) a small bag to put a pair of shoes in, with a rope tie at the top to cinch it closed.

The purpose of the bag was to be able to wear my boots on winter days and then transition to my nice shoes once I got to my destination.  All in a very fashionable way!  Mom was really thinking when she came up with this one!   To this day, as I go to court or work (I’m an attorney now), I still bring my shoe bags with me.  It’s been a priceless, thoughtful gift.

The Value in Saving

While this isn’t an item per se, it sure has been the gift that keeps giving since my parents instilled the value in saving in me.  I no longer fret when my car breaks down (Okay – I do fret a little).  I no longer worry when an unexpected expense comes my way.  Because I know that I will be able to cover it with my savings.

From my first allowance, my parents shared with me this value.  They had me put part of my allowance in the bank and part was a free for all for me!  And free for all it was as a young child.  Later in life, my spending became a bit more calculated but I always maintained the savings habit that they instilled in me.  It doesn’t take a lot; even a dollar here or there can add up over the weeks.

Another good “trick of the trade” with savings is to keep a coin jar.  Then, throw all your coins for the day in there.  One year, I found I had saved over $300 in it!  Not a bad haul!

Your turn!

What gifts have you received as you approached adulthood that you were grateful for?  What helped you transition to adulthood, whether gifts, values, or pieces of advice?

Share your experiences and #TellYourStory with MyNeedToLive


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32 thoughts on “Great “Gifts” to Have As You Approach Adulthood

  1. Lovely post! I definitely think my best gift was learning how to save money! Thanks for sharing ☺️

    1. Lisa Alioto

      Saving money was a great “savior” for me as well Maddie. 🙂

  2. Such a good post, it’s funny how things change as you get older. Last Christmas my other half and I asked for a nice dinner set, and this year we got a new duvet and bedding. But they’re so good and I’d much prefer them than the kind of things I used to get as a kid (although I did also get lego this year!)

    1. Lisa Alioto

      It is funny how our wants and needs change over time, isn’t it Phillippa! It sure keeps things interesting!

  3. Great post! The best gift I received was definitely the value of budgeting.

    1. Lisa Alioto

      Budgeting was a priceless gift for me too Natasha! 🙂

  4. New kitchen stuff is among my favourite adult gifts! My nan bought me my first good blender and food processor, both of which were very much appreciated. I think luggage is a great one if you don’t have any already too x


    1. Lisa Alioto

      Kitchen appliances and key utensils is a great addition to the list Sophie! Thanks for sharing!

  5. I love these gifts you got Lisa. Such valuable life lessons and so much love!

    1. Lisa Alioto

      Thank you Jenni – I hope your life was filled with just as many or more! 🙂

  6. Lovely gifts. I think the best give I received as I approached adulthood is a lesson that the real gifts are not those which are bought with money

    1. Lisa Alioto

      That is so true Jais – they are often in the advice and insights we are given.

  7. Great post! When I graduated high school my parents gave me a car and then handed over a savings account they had started for me when I was born. Both were great help with starting my adult life.

    1. Lisa Alioto

      How wonderful Sharon – that must have given you a great jump start on life as an adult!

  8. Knowing how to save money is so important! When you can develop that habit early on it will serve you well in adulthood.

    1. Lisa Alioto

      I completely agree Rebecca – it’s the gift that keeps giving! 🙂

  9. Dan "Jay" Reyes says:

    Material gifts are good but giving love to others and getting love from others are still the best in my humble opinion.

    1. Lisa Alioto

      I agree – the love and support you get from others can be so priceless in so many ways.

  10. Nice article. I have always received practical gifts which are really very useful to me in my daily life. Luggage bags were one of those gifts i received which I use them in travel!

    1. Lisa Alioto

      Nice!! I’m glad too that you enjoyed the gift of luggage. I was ever so grateful when I got it and also down the line when I needed it.

  11. Kimberlie says:

    It’s interesting the way our perspective changes as we become adults. My mother in law gifted me a luggage set early on in my marriage and I have been extremely thankful. You make a valid point on the show bag.

    1. Lisa Alioto

      It is – what we find valuable now isn’t always what we found valuable then. Sometimes our parents really do know best 😉

  12. Great post! I love teaching the value of savings, where saving money is instilled in you at a young age to help you be better with your finances in adulthood. I always preferred gifts with a personal touch, something that comes from the heart.

    1. Lisa Alioto

      I do too Denise – those are the gifts that will be with you life-long! 🙂

  13. I wish that saving was a gift to me! I’ve certainly gravitated more to that as I get older. My parents often gave me great household gifts when I reached adulthood which I loved because getting your first place on your own can be expensive. So, they were things that I needed like bath towels, kitchen towels, etc.

    1. Lisa Alioto

      Those are wonderful thoughtful gifts – great starter items for someone in their first home!

  14. The best gift I recieved was learning the true meaning if working hard for the things that I want in life as well as the value of a dollar. I’m nowhere near where I want to be in life but I’m trying lol.

    1. Lisa Alioto

      I completely agree with both of those – my parents instilled those skills in my as a child and I’ve carried them through much more seamlessly then if they hadn’t

  15. Wow, great thoughts! My dad bought me an instapot when I moved into my first apartment and it’s still one of my favorite gifts!

  16. Lisa Alioto

    Oh! An instapot is a great first apartment gift! Great thinking dad!! 🙂

  17. I love these adulting gifts! These are some great ideas and I love that they are useful. Shoe bags are super useful! I am a big fan of money too as gifts hehe. Saving up is great. I prefer gift cards if anything haha. Thanks for sharing!

    Nancy ♥

  18. Lisa Alioto

    You’re welcome Nancy – thank you for stopping by!

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