The final countdown is on for holiday shopping, so I’ve put together a few suggestions for must-have stocking stuffers and extra little gifts to make that someone in your life smile this December.

And the best part? Most of these gifts can be picked up in stores, and they’re mostly under $50.


Bobble |
Price: $8.99 to $12.99
Available at: Chapters Indigo, GNC Canada, Loblaws, Zehrs

For the active person in your life who hates bottled water, there’s nothing quite like Bobble–the reusable water bottle that filters as you pour.

The smart-looking bottles come in multiple sizes–including a convenient small size that holds 385mL of water–and the carbon filters, which remove chlorine and organic contaminants, can be easily replaced.

For the cost conscious, it’s also good to know that the filters last up to 300 refills, and Bobble is free of BPAs, Phthalates and PVC.


Gillette Fusion Proglide StylerGillette Fusion Proglide Styler
Price: $25.99
Available: Shoppers Drug Mart, and in most stores where you can buy razors

If you’re looking for the perfect gift for the man in your life, the Gillette Fusion Proglide Styler is a great gift to help him look his best. The shaver, trimmer, and edger can replace all of his other grooming tools, and takes normal Gillette Fusion Proglide blades for shaving. The Styler is also fully waterproof, meaning he can use it in the shower, and it just takes a single A battery, so no need to worry about charging.

Since the Gillette Fusion Proglide Styler is also small, it travels well, making it the perfect holiday gift for that special guy with a beard or goatee.


Stanley AM/FM Digital EarmuffsStanley AM/FM Digital Earmuffs
Price: $69.99
Available: Canadian Tire

These earmuffs are perfect for anyone who works in a noisy environment, but wishes they could listen to music. With the built-in AM/FM tuner, or using the supplied cable to plug them into an MP3 player, these CSA safety rated earmuffs will protect the user from ear-damaging noise, while giving them options to listen to their favorite tunes.

Best of all, the earmuffs are actually comfortable, and they feature a bendable antennae, plus a detachable cable for plugging in any external players, like an iPod or phone.


Steam Whistle Holiday 6-PackSteam Whistle Holiday Packs
Price: 6-Pack – $13.25, 12-Pack – $24.65
Available: Liquor and beer stores (LCBO, The Beer Store)

As gifts go, it’s hard to top a pack of craft beer, and one of my favorites from Toronto is Steam Whistle, the Gold Medal Pilsner winner from the 2012 Canadian Brewing Awards.

This year, Steam Whistle has two Holiday Packs–their 6-Pack for $13.25 and their 12-Pack for $24.65–which are both well-priced and delicious for entertaining, or even for cooking.

The Holiday Packs are practically already packaged for gift-giving, with a festival design and gift-tag, and you can find recipe ideas on Steam Whistle’s website.


Price: $7.99/month
Available: Online

Netflix offers one of the best prices for what is effectively a fantastic service for people who love television and movies. While it is safe to say that Netflix rarely has everything people are looking for in terms of new movies and shows, they still offer a huge range of recent and retro television for a price that beats everything else.

Want to watch every single episode of X-Files? Netflix has it. They also have loads of great movies from every genre, and the service works right from your computer, tablet, Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3.


Blu-ray Movies
Price: Various
Available: Anywhere Blu-ray is sold

For three quick suggestions for gift-worthy Blu-ray titles, Fox Home Entertainment has you covered this year, with Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, American Horror Story: Season 1, and Ruby Sparks.

For fans of touching, funny dramas, Best Exotic Marigold Hotel features Judi Dench, Bill Nighy, Tom Wilkinson, and Maggie Smith in the tale of seven senior citizens who decide to make their retirement a bit cheaper by heading to a bargain, but poorly run, hotel resort in India. The film is filled with wonderful performances, and a touching story about starting over, and coming to terms with the past, and what the future might hold.

The first season of American Horror Story, on the other hand, is great horror at its best, and it’s one of the creepiest new shows to come to television in years. Starring Dylan McDermott and Connie Britton as a couple on the rocks, looking for a new start on the outskirts of Los Angeles, the show is trippy, and strange, and brilliantly acted, and it features Jessica Lange in her Golden Globe-winning performance for the scariest neighbour you will ever meet.

And finally, Ruby Sparks stars Paul Dano as Calvin, a young writer who is struggling with his latest novel when he inadvertently falls in love with his own creation: Ruby, played by Zoe Kazan. Somehow, Calvin’s new character from his new book is alive and living in his house, and he has no idea how it happened. The story is funny, quirky, and most of all, sweet, and it’s sure to please movie lovers who love a good romantic comedy.

About The Author

W. Andrew Powell

W. Andrew Powell lives, sleeps, eats, and breaths movies and entertainment. Since launching The GATE in 1999 Andrew has enjoyed being a pest to any publicist who would return his calls.

In his “spare time,” Andrew is also an avid photographer, and writes about leisure travel and hotels around the world.

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