Gift Guide for Developers – 2021 edition

How is it December already?

As always, I want to note that a good gift doesn’t necessarily have to be a(n expensive) physical item. Sometimes an offer of service, helping out with the kids, going on walks together, making a meal for them – these can be more valuable. What you gift someone should take into account what their life is like currently.

Wonderful items they didn’t know they needed


I’ve been loving candles lately. Clean candles with wood wicks, for that soothing crackling sound. Milk Jar candles have been some of my favourites, particularly the Aurora and Dandy.

Electric Heated Blanket

A friend of mine was raving about this gift she got, and I was thinking, hey I get cold too sometimes. A heated blanket sounds heavenly for this winter season.

Temperature Controlled Mug

My brother got me one last year. You’ll laugh at the idea (and the cost), but once you’ve experience coffee/tea that stays the perfect temperature for the entire time you’re drinking it, you’ll never go back (and your loved one will love it too).

Optimizing the WFH experience

Standing Desk Base

Standing desks are obnoxiously expensive. But this standing desk base is very affordable, and you can pair with a table top of your choice! I paired mine with an affordable $25 table top, and it was perfect. I have the benefit of programmable heights for a reasonable price with customizability.

Desk mount for your monitor

Once you have this, you realize just how much space the monitor stand used to take. Not only does this free up space it also looks way sleeker.

Cleaning service

Work is tiring and when you work from home, sometimes it’s hard to motivate yourself to also work at keeping your home clean. A couple cleaning service vouchers from a local company can be an amazing gift people can use in a pinch or when they are really worn out. If you’re in Calgary, I can recommend Mopify (they are available in most major cities in Canada, and a bunch in the US as well)!


Here are some recommendations from yours truly:

While I have your attention, I’d also like to suggest taking a moment to donate to a charity this season – perhaps a homeless shelter or an organization that supports BIPOC artists, or protects women escaping domestic abuse, or fights discrimination. Doesn’t have to be a large donation, but as we head into the holidays, let’s give some thoughts and a little help to those in need.

Always include a note that explains your gift (why you picked it). A small (handwritten) note can elevate a small candle to a treasured item that makes a person smile every time they light it.

Happy gifting, y’all.