2013 Holiday Gift Guide: For Everyone.

 Since the holidays are all about giving, why not take the opportunity to really give back this year? Let's be honest, if you are reading this on any type of electric device, and you aren't hungry, and you have clothes and fresh water, and aren't in fear of your life, than really, you, like me, don't need anything. The perfect gift for anyone in your life is most definitely a donation in their name to a cause that will continue to give throughout 2014. That candle or scarf you were eyeing for your sister… probably won't last through January.

Here are 5 great ways to give to those who are really in need. No wrapping required.

Kiva is an incredible site that allows you make microloans to people in developing countries. You are able to chose a recipient, track their progress, and when they repay the loan, you can re-donate it to someone else. How cool is that? The concept is so incredibly simple, and I hope it catches on! This is perfect for those office or family gifts with a 25$ limit, or even as a hostess gift with a beautiful card. 

I was turned on to Skateistan though my son's skate network, and I have continued to follow this amazing school throughout the past year. It provides education and sports (the central theme is skateboarding) to young women in Afghanistan and Cambodia. Watch this video and you too will be blown away!!! 

This one is important to me for obvious reasons, and I am so impressed with the way that the country has come together to help all the victims after the April bombing in my beautiful city. My Dad was at an event in California, where some of those injured were receiving new limbs, and that story has stayed with me almost as intensely as my memories from the day of the explosion. So many people were affected that day, and many will need support for the rest of their lives. This central fund makes sure that no person is forgotten

I still think about those kids every day. For almost a year they have been one of the first things I think of when I wake up in the morning. I am so incredibly frustrated that the anniversary of this massacre is upon us, and we as a nation have done so little to make our kids any safer. Politics and anger aside, this fund is set up to directly help those in the Newtown community and I can't think of a better war to honor those beautiful children, then to continue to give services and aid to all of the families affected by that preventable tragedy. 

We all have seen the devastating aftermath from the Typhoon in the Philippines, and this beautiful country needs so much help right now. My kids and I talk a lot about how much need there is out there, and this is one place that needs the whole world's help right now.

If you have a cause or charity that is important to you, please feel free to leave a link in the comments section!