I know, I know. You have so many people to buy gifts for, so many websites offering to SHIP THIS TO YOUR DOOR RIGHT NOW, so little time to actually figure out gifts that will inspire, entertain, and delight your family.

Here are gifts that middle school and high school girls will love….

(Come back tomorrow for the Teen Boy list.)




Put on your favorite Depeche Mode album, open a bottle of Clearly Canadian, and pull your hair back in a scruchi because all of these best ‘90s trends are hot again. The good news is you probably have a couple of your old scrunchies in the back of a random bathroom drawer.

The even better news is that this is a cheap gift your Middle/High Schooler. According to my girls, if you gift a dozen of the velvet ones, your teen will love you all winter long.

Make-up brushes


Catie has been asking for make-up brushes for weeks now. This is thanks to YouTube and the tutorials that teach girls how to contour and highlight like they’re doing runway make-up.

Never mind that I used my finger to apply all my make-up until I was 40. The future is here and it looks like 16 different brushes to create smoky eyes and complicated lip-outlingin.

The good news is that make-up brush sets are literally everywhere so you can spend anywhere from a few bucks to a few hundred. Here’s a good set I found at Sam’s and really like.

James Avery Charm Bracelet

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In our family, Grandma buys the girls this James Avery bracelet at 13 and right then asks them to pick out several of their favorite charms.

It’s genius because she has gifts for the next several holidays. Of course you could get a charm bracelet from anywhere (James Avery is a bit more pricey and it NEVER goes on sale) but you can’t beat the quality and detail in each of the charms James Avery makes. Plus, it’s a Christian company–and Texan too.

Owl Crate Jr.…

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2019 has become the year of the subscription box and it’s a beautiful thing. This is one of the only gifts that really will keep on giving–all year long.

There’s a subscription service for everything from bath bombs to fitness goodies to books. And kids love to get mail so these thoughtfully-curated, hand-chosen goodies are always a hit.

Our 11-year-old loves to read and really want to get Owl Crates. Every month they send themed boxes (including at least one YA book). The packages are super cute with lots of little freebies for the book-lover. There’s also an Owl Crate Jr. for younger kids.

You can watch unboxing videos of other kids receiving their Owl Crates to get an idea of what’s in them. (It’s probably these videos that have made the subscription box the gift of the year because America does love a good unboxing).

Apple Airpods


We should make a whole separate category of gifts for listening to music on your phone: Bluetooth speakers, over-your-ears headphones, corded speakers/headphones, and plain, old earbuds.

In our family, we’re all over with our preferences. I’m an over-the-ears lover because of the fantastic sound quality. Mike uses his for the hundreds of conference calls he seems to do in a day, so the AirPods work best because of their seamless connectivity with the iPhone. Our Middle School kids don’t use earbuds much, but when they do, they prefer the old school corded & in-ear variety.

For most teens, Apple AirPods > The Rest. They are low-profile, connect so easily to all Apple products, and the sound quality is really good.

These are pricey, but if you have a teen or college student on your list who needs music to plow through homework, you could help them out with a pair of AirPods.

And hey! Share this Gift Guide on Facebook or Instagram and I’ll send your favorite teen girl a FREE Copy of Last Summer at Eden, my YA novel.


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