Books

Your favorite readers need gifts, but with thousands of 2018 releases to choose from, narrowing things down is no small task. We’re here for you with recommendations for bookworms of all stripes.

Food

Food and drinks are the perfect gift for the person who has it all — they are thoughtful but come with an expiration date. (But we’ve tacked on a few long-lasting items, for good measure.)

Home

For the holidays or a housewarming, these gifts are functional, fun and lovely to look at, too.

Self-care

Take care of your loved ones with these thoughtful stress relievers. Or, just treat yourself.

Tech

What’s a better gift than the future? These are the innovative gadgets and services we’ve tried and loved over the past year.

Toys

Toy expert Stephanie Oppenheim gives a sampling of the best toys of 2018 from the Oppenheim Toy Portfolio, celebrating its 20th anniversary this year.

Travel

Being there is great. Getting there? Not so much. Make life a little easier — or comfier or drier — for the traveler in your life with these gift ideas.

Video games

The Post’s Gene Park and KidsPost video game reviewer Tom Ham reveal their picks for the holidays. 2018 has one of the most stacked release schedules in years.

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Oculus: Go Virtual Reality Headset

$199 | The Oculus Go is the first virtual reality gadget you might actually gift. It has no cables and requires no additional hardware. And it’s good for more than just games. It’s a self-contained portal to 360-degree experiences, from concerts to meditation experiences. Curl up and watch TV virtually with a faraway friend. Or on a long flight, you can use one as your private movie theater.

Buy
from Amazon.com

TCL: 6-Series Roku TV

$649.97 | You might not be familiar with the TCL brand, but don’t let that turn you away from this amazing value. The 6-series TV boasts picture tech that rivals what you can get from bestseller Samsung — and costs half as much. It’s not only 4K, it supports high dynamic range (HDR) content.

Buy
from Amazon.com

Hulu: No-ads Subscription

$11.99 per month | For the TV lover, what’s better than the gift of no commercials? Hulu streams the current season of shows from NBC, CBS, ABC and other cable networks, as well as beloved back-catalog hits. For a bit more money, the often overlooked commercial-free subscription lets you squeeze even more TV into your life. (You can give a $50 Hulu gift card on BestBuy.com.)

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from Hulu.com

Sony: Aibo

$2,899.99 | Sure, nobody needs a robot dog. But you’ll want one after meeting Aibo, the rebirth of Sony’s iconic robot companion from 1999. Aibo’s new litter comes with remarkably lifelike mechanical movement, its own cellular connection and artificial intelligence that learns faces and grows with you. Also: You’ll never have to take it for a walk — though it can still simulate taking a tinkle.

Buy
from Sony.com

iRobot: Roomba i7

$949.99 | The next-generation robot vacuum cleaner from iRobot has gained remarkable skills. Like a self-driving car, it creates its own map of your house to clean more efficiently — and so it can take commands to vacuum just one particular room. Even better: The i7 has a docking station that empties its own dustbin. Watch out, Rosie from “The Jetsons.”

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from BestBuy.com

Moment: Wide Lens for Smartphones

$117.99 | Help your favorite Instagrammers take their photo game to the next level with this detachable lens for the iPhone, Samsung and Google Pixel phones. This wide lens provides the most dramatic new view, but there are also telephoto, macro and fisheye lenses available. Cases that make it easy to twist on and off the lenses sold separately.

Buy
from Amazon.com

Microsoft: Surface Go with Type Cover

$626.95 | Want the full capabilities of a PC in a package you can stick in a purse or knapsack? The Surface Go is a 10-inch tablet that weighs 1.15 pounds but comes with a keyboard cover and stand that transform it into a Windows 10 laptop. The smaller keys take a little getting used to, but this tablet is serious about business.

Buy
from Amazon.com

Sphero: Bolt App-Enabled Robot

$149.99 | What’s more fun than a ball? A waterproof robot ball you drive from an app with a rainbow LED screen inside. Even better, the Bolt teaches kids the basics of coding through its Sphero Edu app with drawing, using Scratch blocks or writing JavaScript.

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from Amazon.com

Byrd & Belle: Laptop, Tablet and Phone Felt Cases

$19 and up | This is really a gift for laptops, tablets and cellphones. They'll get to spend downtime encased in a luxurious, thick, protective felt — in one of 10 beautiful colors. Makers Byrd & Belle believe in simple, yet functional designs with quality construction.

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from ByrdAndBelle.com

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Amazon: Fire HD 8 Kids Edition Tablet

$99.99 | Kids love tablets. But for parents, providing safe, age-appropriate experiences — that aren’t just rotting Junior’s brain — can be a lot of work. Amazon’s kids edition tablet goes further than iPads to give parents tools to reward learning time. It comes with a year’s subscription to FreeTime Unlimited, which provides access to over 20,000 popular apps and games, videos and books.

Buy
from Amazon.com

Apple: Watch Series 4

From $399 | If you’ve been on the fence about a smartwatch, this one is finally worth considering. The series 4 has a larger screen, faster processor and — for $100 extra — comes with its own independent cellular connection to take calls and receive messages while you’re away from your iPhone. This model also acts more like a medical device, with abilities to measure your heart and call for help after a hard fall.

Buy
from Apple.com

Sonos: Beam Smart TV Soundbar

$399 | The best upgrade you can make to your TV is better sound. This compact soundbar attaches to a TV and packs in a lot of great sound — but also has a few other tricks. With Amazon’s Alexa built in, it can take voice commands to play music or even control the TV. And it can wirelessly sync up with other Sonos speakers to give you music all over the house.

Buy
from Amazon.com

Apple: AirPods

$159 | Sure, these totally wireless ear buds looked goofy when they first came out. But now they’re everywhere and with good reason: The AirPods work and sound great. An included case keeps them charged and from getting lost. The biggest downside is Apple’s one-size-fits-all design, so you should try on a pair and give your head a good shake before buying.

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from Apple.com

Bibliophile: An Illustrated Miscellany

Jane Mount (Chronicle)

$18.31 | This whimsically illustrated guide to all things even tangentially book-related — from the most architecturally singular libraries to writer-owned bookstores and famous writers’ pets — should delight fans of literary minutiae, who will no doubt excel at the Five-Word Synopsis Quiz. (Sample question: “Teen battle thanks to despot.” Come on, you know this one.)

Buy
from Amazon.com

The Atlas Obscura Explorer’s Guide for the World’s Most Adventurous Kid

Dylan Thuras and Rosemary Mosco, illustrations by Joy Ang (Workman)

$13.49 | Hey kids: Geography can be fun! At least when it involves an illustrated guide to 100 magical destinations, including the Waitomo Glowworm Caves of New Zealand and South Africa’s Boulders Penguin Colony. Just don’t blame us if next year the little ones ask for a round-trip ticket to Ethiopia’s Lava Lakes.

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from Amazon.com

The Big Fella: Babe Ruth and the World He Created

Jane Leavy (Harper)

$20.99 | After writing biographies of Mickey Mantle and Sandy Koufax, the former Washington Post writer turns her detail-oriented attention to renowned slugger Babe Ruth. She delivers a warts-and-all account of a legendary life, from the highs of his 1927 victory lap around the country to the darker days that followed.

Buy
from Amazon.com

The New Yorker Encyclopedia of Cartoons

Bob Mankoff (Black Dog & Leventhal)

$61.33 | The former cartoon editor of the New Yorker curates and analyzes the best of the best with a mammoth two-volume tome that covers nearly 100 years of artistry (not to mention incisive commentary). Yes, the whole thing might weigh you down, but it’s also guaranteed to lift your spirits.

Buy
from Amazon.com

Ninety-Nine Glimpses of Princess Margaret

Craig Brown (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)

$17.38 | Our collective interest in the British royal family knows no bounds. (You can thank “The Crown.” Or Meghan Markle. Or those adorable tots Will and Kate keep producing.) In any event, here’s another little peek behind the castle door: A sardonic look at the ever-colorful — and yes, that’s a euphemism — sister of Queen Elizabeth.

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from Amazon.com

There There

Tommy Orange (Knopf)

$17.64 | The events in “There There” don’t exactly scream holiday cheer: The novel follows a cast of Native Americans who are heading to a powwow in Oakland, Calif., where tragedy awaits. But Orange’s debut continues to be one of the buzziest releases of the year, which means it belongs on your favorite book-lover’s shelf.

Buy
from Amazon.com

In the Hurricane’s Eye: The Genius of George Washington and the Victory at Yorktown

Nathaniel Philbrick (Viking)

$19.49 | This entry falls under the category of “books to buy your dad” — for when socks just won’t do. That being said, this is an exceptionally worthy contender for any history lover. Written by a National Book Award Winner and Pulitzer Prize finalist, the book chronicles the tumultuous final year of the Revolutionary War.

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from Amazon.com

Gmorning, Gnight!: Little Pep Talks for Me & You

Lin-Manuel Miranda, illustrations by Jonny Sun (Random House)

$13.20 | When he’s not busy writing Pulitzer-winning musicals and Disney movie tunes, “Hamilton” mastermind Miranda likes to pen motivational missives on Twitter, which may be one of the few good things about social media. Now his mood boosters are in book form — alongside Sun’s adorable illustrations — so you don’t need a handle to enjoy them.

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from Amazon.com

An American Marriage

Tayari Jones (Algonquin)

$16.17 | Oprah is a fan: After selecting this novel for her book club, she announced she’d be turning it into a movie. No word on that version, but adaptations are never as good anyway, so let’s just stick to the original — a love story with heart-wrenching complications after a black man is wrongly sent to prison.

Buy
from Amazon.com

How to Be a Good Creature: A Memoir in Thirteen Animals

Sy Montgomery, illustrations by Rebecca Green (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)

$14 | The naturalist and National Book Award finalist has made a career of writing charming stories about animals, including “The Good Good Pig.” Her new memoir revisits her interactions with a collection of creatures that helped her find her humanity, from a tiny weasel who killed one of her chickens to her counter-surfing border collie.

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from Amazon.com

Uncommon Goods: 100 Books Scratch Off Poster

$15 | Here’s some incentive to put down the remote and pick up your library card: This poster lists 100 classic books (“Lord of the Flies,” “Anna Karenina”). After reading each one, it’s time to move on to the satisfying act of scratching off a square to reveal a charming illustration. No cheating!

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from UncommonGoods.com

Mark-My-Time: Digital Bookmark and Reading Timer

$9.91 | This bookmark is ostensibly for kids who have a reading quota for school, but who are we kidding? It’s just as helpful for adults who get so caught up in a book that they lose track of time because they keep telling themselves, “just one more page.” You know who you are.

Buy
from Amazon.com

Peanut Butter Co.: Nut Butters

Butter Scotch and Choc Choc, $8.49; Natural Peanut, $6.99 | The New Jersey-based shop sells candy, jams, coffee and even dog treats, along with nut butters such as butterscotch, chocolate and plain ol’ natural. Spread them on toast, cake or cookies. Or add them to smoothies for a protein boost.

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from PeanutButterCo.

Diaspora Co.: Turmeric Powder

$15 | The golden, organic spice is sustainably grown from heirloom seeds in Andhra Pradesh, a state in southeast India. Potent, vibrant and full of flavor, it is unlike any turmeric we’ve had before. The fact that it’s ethically sourced — and that the people growing it earn a living wage — is icing on the cake.

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from Diasporaco.com

Z&Z: Za’atar

$9.99 | The Middle Eastern spice blend of wild thyme, toasted sesame seeds and sumac comes from a family-owned, D.C.-based company. (The ingredients are grown in the Palestinian city of Jenin.) Scatter it on yogurt, pizza, roasted vegetables, burgers, kebabs or anywhere you want a tangy, herbal, savory boost.

Buy
from Amazon.com

Peg’s Salt

Three-ounce bottle, $4.75 | This versatile seasoning salt was first made by a woman named Peg in the 1970s. Her daughter finally got her to write down the recipe — it involves more than 20 common spices such as parsley, garlic and pepper. Thanks to Peg's daughter, those of us who aren't Peg's family and friends can enjoy how the salt enhances food.

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from PegsSalt.com

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Lindera Farms: Vinegars

$20 | The Delaplane, Va., company ferments a variety of vinegars from locally, sustainably sourced goods including cherry blossoms, paw-paws, raspberries and sorghum. Each is incredibly complex and so smooth you can sip it straight. If sipping vinegar isn’t your recipient’s thing, be sure to mention the trove of recipes available on Lindera’s website.

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from LinderaFarms.com

Floor 9: Flask with Drawstring Bag

$18 | This is not a flask to drink furtively from — it’s one to show off, with its striking dual tones and cute rounded shape. The stainless steel flask holds five ounces and is available in six color pairings.

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from Amazon.com

Menus: A Book for Your Meals and Memories, by Jacques Pépin

Jacques Pépin (Rux Martin/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)

$14.90 | Part art book, part scrapbook, this is a different kind of cook’s book featuring cheerful illustrations by celebrated chef Jacques Pépin. The book of blank pages is meant for you to fill in with your own dinner menus, chronicling memories of an evening spent in good company, just as Pépin started doing in the 1960s.

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from Amazon.com

Germack Pistachio Co.: Gift Basket

$24.99-$110 | For the times only a gift basket will do, make it one from the oldest pistachio roaster in America, based in Detroit. Featuring an assortment of Michigan-made products, such as popcorn, toffee, chocolate and of course, nuts.

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from Germack.com

Rough Linen: Apron

$50 | With a sleek and simple profile, deep front pockets and long string that ties in the front. Ideal for your friend who entertains, your sibling who constantly spills when cooking or you in need of a new linen.

Buy
from Amazon.com

Finger Lakes Cider House: Cider Club Subscription

Around $45 per quarter | Send three bottles of cider, four times a year, right to your lucky recipient’s door. Ciders include seasonal releases and varieties with limited availability. Club members also receive two free cider tastings when visiting the cider house in Interlaken, N.Y. (Shipping limited to certain states.)

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from FingerLakesCiderHouse.com

Washington State University Creamery: Cougar Gold Cheese

30-ounce can, $22 | Yes: This is cheese in a can. No: This is not processed cheese product. It’s an award-winning aged white cheddar from the creamery at Washington State University. A trip to the Evergreen State is no longer required to obtain it. Gift it for the novelty and then invite yourself over for the cheese and crackers.

Buy
from CougarCheese.WSU.edu

The Kombucha Shop: Kombucha Brewing Kit

$49 | The Kombucha Shop was founded by Kate Field because she couldn't find a quality home brewing kit. With her background in the culinary arts and nutrition, Field knew she could create a kit focused on high-quality ingredients. It comes with all the brewing essentials including the hard-to-acquire scoby.

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from TheKombuchaShop.com

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Maui Fruit Jewels: Hawaii Fruit Paste

$7.50 each | Each paste, from fruit grown in Hawaii, makes a delightful accompaniment to cheese and crackers. (We also recommend slipping a thin slice into a grilled cheese sandwich, preferably made with gouda and good sourdough.) In passion fruit, guava, pineapple and pineapple with chile flakes.

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from MauiFruitJewels.com

Young America Creative: Seafood and Shellfish Poster

From $30 | From California, a poster both beautiful and useful, made to create awareness about the seasonal availability of seafood from the Pacific Ocean. If your recipient isn’t interested in geoduck clams or spiny scallops, they may appreciate the equally charming works on seasonal wildflowers or fruit and vegetables.

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from ThisIsYa.com

Sajen Inc.: Sambals

$8.50 each; three for $24 | Expand your spicy-food-loving friend’s repertoire with a Javanese-inspired sambal (hot sauce) made in San Francisco. Add to fried rice, eggs, soup, sandwiches or wherever you need a little heat. Choose from individual varieties or go all in with a trio of sambals.

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from TheSajenStore.com

CB2: Clarity Bowls

$5.06-$10.16 | We can think of so many uses for these modern porcelain bowls. The three options in the smaller size — white, black and gold — will fit any color scheme (the large option is available in white only). And at these prices, you could mix and match a few.

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from CB2.com

Cookut: Easy Cocktail Set

$14.49 | For any cocktail-loving friend who’s tired of novelty shot glasses and shakers, we like these colorful stirrers. They aim to make mixology easy with portioned amounts of each ingredient shown right on the stick — no Googling necessary. Recipes include White Russian, Sex on the Beach, Piña Colada, Margarita, Tequila Sunrise and Cuba Libre.

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from Amazon.com

Blue Q: Most Likely to Microwave Oven Mitt

$12.97 | Even the worst cooks still need an oven mitt. (Also helpful: a sense of humor.) This gift lets you tease them and help them at the same time. For those more skilled in the kitchen, Blue Q has mitts with other cheeky sayings, such as “Hot Hot Vegetarian Action” and “I’m not bossy. I’m the boss.”

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from Amazon.com

Serax: Juice Straws

$19 | As consumers and companies have rejected plastic straws, reusable versions have been popping up all over. We love this elegant glass set, with a luxurious feel perfect for using and even displaying at home. The set of four comes with a cleaning brush. (For thicker drinks, go for the larger “smoothie” size for $23.)

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from Amara.com

Koeppel Design: Now Spinning Tabletop Record Display

$76 | Tired of "plastic, ugly, poorly made" systems for organizing records, graphic designer Kate Koeppel decided to create her own. This "Now Spinning" display is perfect for the record collector who also appreciates tidiness, minimal design and products made in the United States.

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from KoeppelDesign.com

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Ikea: Förädla Serving Stand

$24.99 | Serving accessories can get pretty pricey, but this porcelain stand, with three tiers for pastries, cheese or fruit, feels like a steal. And as Ikea products go, this one should be easy to assemble even for the least handy among us.

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from Ikea.com

Haws: 10-Ounce Plant Mister

$21.95 | Houseplants are trending, and we think any new plant parent will appreciate this brass mister, which can keep plants healthy and even look good sitting next to them. Britain-based Haws has been known for its watering cans since the 19th century.

Buy
from HawsWateringCans.com

Mokie See Mokie Do: Personalized Doorstop

From $15 | Incorporating at least one 3D-printed object into our lives seems necessary in 2018. Keeping doors ajar is also, at times, necessary. We present you this 3D-printed, customizable door stop for a gift that is both modern and practical.

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from Etsy.com

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Host: Freeze Cooling Pint Glasses

$18.50 | After a couple hours in the freezer, a cooling gel in the walls of these acrylic cups will keep drinks cold, and the built-in silicone sleeves will keep hands comfortable. Pair them with a six-pack of your favorite beer or a bottle of fancy lemonade. Also available: wine, martini, whiskey and margarita cups.

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from Amazon.com

Good Company Wares: Small Natural Canvas Hanging Planter

$34 | We like this warm, updated take on a hanging planter. The colorful canvas planter hangs from an oiled leather strap secured with brass rivets (an optional wooden peg is an extra $8). Also included: a plastic planter and saucer inside to keep the canvas dry. Other planters are available in different sizes and prints, many with a Southwestern feel.

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from BeInGoodCompany.com

Z Gallerie: Cheers Champagne Flutes

$22.99 | These fun but elegant flutes, made of hand-blown glass, offer a toast in six languages: English, French, German, Gaelic, Italian and Swedish. Pair them with a bottle of your favorite champagne so they can be appreciated rapidamente. Note: They must be hand-washed.

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from ZGallerie.com

Magic Markings Art: Personalized House Portrait Christmas Ornament

$50 | Virginia Beach artist Cathie Carlson specializes in custom keepsake gifts for weddings, housewarmings, births and holidays. These custom ornaments are hand-painted from a photo, with the back left blank for text. Note: Carlson needs two to three weeks to work on a custom ornament, so leave as much time as possible.

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from Etsy.com

PB Teen: Harry Potter Deathly Hallows Bluetooth Speaker

$79 | Anyone can appreciate a stylish, gilded Bluetooth speaker. But fans of the Harry Potter books and movies will especially appreciate this subtle nod to the series. The 4-by-4.5-inch smartphone-compatible speaker can play music and answer calls wirelessly and has a rechargeable battery.

Buy
from PBTeen.com

Sagaform: Hold Adjustable Vase

$44.99 | This simple, elegant vase, designed by Pascal Charmolu, has a genius feature: The gilded steel frame can be adjusted higher to make room for taller flowers or lowered over the glass base. We think it could become any household’s go-to vase.

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from Zola.com

Hape: Busy City Rail Set

Ages 3 and older

$69.88 | All aboard! This 51-piece wooden train set is perfect for busy toddlers. Snap together the 20 pieces of track in one of several options, and let the passenger and freight trains roll. Set includes figures, cargo crane, truck, railway bridge, safety signs — it’s all here for instant fun.

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from Amazon.com

Educational Insights: Design & Drill See-Through Creative Workshop

Ages 3 to 6

$39.99 | A new version of a classic toy: Pull out the battery-powered drill, grab the screwdriver or wrench and get to work. With 120 colorful plastic bolts and 10 activity cards, your little mechanic will have enough inspiration for hours of play. Multilingual instruction card for parents included.

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from Educationalinsights.com

Hasbro: Star Wars Sound & Motion Ultimate Co-Pilot Chewie

Ages 4 and older

$109.99 | He grunts, roars, laughs and snores — like an older brother but without the pushing and shoving. This 17-inch-tall Wookiee warrior stands ready to be your co-pilot and new best friend. Chewie is loaded with 100-plus sounds and movements. And as far as we know, he doesn’t shed.

Buy
from Target.com

Crayola: Mini Neon Marker Maker

Ages 6 to 9

$19.99 | Create 36 custom mini markers in neon colors. Use the scented ink provided — lemon taffy, blue raspberry and red fruit punch — or mix your own colors. Special caps turn your markers into backpack clip-ons. Younger users may need adult help getting the ink into the markers.

Buy
from Amazon.com

Creativity for Kids: Sweater Ornaments

Ages 6 and older

$13 | Dress up the winter holidays with these cute little sweaters, each about 5-by-4 inches. Kit includes felt, rhinestones, bells and other trim sufficient to decorate three sweaters. No sewing involved. When done, display the sweaters on three tiny hangers (included). Tweens will love these.

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from Amazon.com

Lego: Friends Friendship House

Ages 6 to 12

$55.99 | This 722-piece building set answers the question: What would three girls do if they lived in a dream house? This multicultural Friends trio barbecue, ride bikes, use the computer, soak in the hot tub and care for their dog, bunny and hamster. Who wouldn’t want to move in?

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from Amazon.com

Thames & Kosmos: I Dig It! Dinos

Ages 7 and older

$12.03 | Future paleontologists will be thrilled with the 11 kits in this new series. And parents will be thrilled that the kits’ dust-free material protects young eyes. Excavations include replicas of a Tyrannosaurus rex tooth and egg, two glow-in-the-dark dinos, real minerals and (don’t tell the kids) educational material.

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from Amazon.com

Gamewright: Long Cow – An Udderly Ridiculous Card Game

Ages 8 and older

$14.99 | Holy cow! This moo-ving card game has players trying to build the biggest herd and longest cow by using heads, rumps and middle sections from the deck. Watch out for opponents attempting a raid. It’s good family fun, unless Grandpa was a cattle rustler in another era.

Buy
from Amazon.com

ThinkFun: Shadows in the Forest

Ages 8 and older

$19.99 | This creepy-fun game is played in the dark. One player has a small, battery-powered lantern, and the others are forest creatures called Shadowlings, who must hide from the light or be frozen. The Shadowlings help one another get from one shadow to the next until they all reach safety.

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from Amazon.com

Hasbro: Connect 4 Shots

Ages 8 and older

$17.77 | The popular Connect 4 game has a new twist in 2018. It has become an action game. Players stand and simultaneously bounce colorful balls off a table and into the grid. Whoever is first to get four in a row — up, down or diagonally — wins.

Buy
from Amazon.com

Gamewright: Tiki Topple

Ages 10 and older

$16.99 | “One of the best games of the year!” boasts Oppenheim Toy Portfolio. Nine colorful carvings compete to be top tiki. Players use a combination of cards to maneuver their secret tikis to the head of the line, toppling their opponents’ pieces. Win and you’re the Tiki Master.

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from Amazon.com

Samsonite: Eco-Glide Wheeled Underseater Carry-On

$102.91 | There’s no travel stressor like jockeying for carry-on space in an overhead compartment on a crowded flight. The solution? Go low. Store this compact, earth-friendly suitcase — the fabric is made from recycled plastic bottles — under your seat and avoid the melee altogether.

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from Amazon.com

Flight 001: Seat Pak

$28 | Kangaroos know best: You need a pouch to carry your essentials. The three zippered pockets on the front and the deeper well in the back will keep you organized on flights and day trips. You’ll only need to single dip to locate your electronics, documents and other crucial items.

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from Amazon.com

Comrad: Companion Compression Socks

$21 | Style bulletin for travelers: Compression socks don’t have to be ugly anymore. The practical socks, which boost circulation and reduce the risk of swelling during long stretches of in-flight inactivity, now come in splashy colors, preppy stripes and more. The only shade they don’t come in? Medical-supply white.

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from ComradSocks.com

YOGO: Ultralight Travel Yoga Mat

$64.99 | Be prepared wherever the “Om” strikes you. Folded up, this slim, two-pound mat resembles a flattened jelly roll and comes with straps for easy toting — or slip it inside a backpack or carry-on. Flat on its back, its sticky grip will keep your downward dog from slipping.

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from Amazon.com

Bucky: 40 Blinks Sleep Mask

$12.91 | Even in the brightest environments, travelers can switch off the lights in this for-your-eyes-only sleep mask. The accessory’s molded shape and airy foam material allow for maximum comfort and won’t smudge your awake face. Choose one of the many available colors or patterns to look your best while conked out.

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from Bucky.com

Chronicle Books: Travel Stub Diary

$13.46 | As anyone who’s ever cleaned out their bag at the end of a trip can tell you, travel generates memorabilia. But how to store it? That’s where this diary comes in: Its transparent pouches are perfect for ticket stubs, postcards and all the miscellany that tells the story of your trip in two dimensions.

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from Amazon.com

ProudGuy: TUFFTAAG Luggage Tag

$10.49-$50.49 | Can’t pick your own suitcase out of a lineup? You won’t have to with these indestructible IDs made of reinforced aluminum and attached via steel cable. In addition to being tamper-proof, they come in splashy colors that will pop on baggage carousels filled with lookalike luggage.

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from Amazon.com

Kate Spade: Raindrop Travel Umbrella

$33.60 | This whimsical raindrop-patterned umbrella will keep you fashionably dry on your travels. Its petite dimensions are ideal for anyone in transit, and its auto-open button will come in handy in destinations where the weather changes every 10 minutes.

Buy
from Amazon.com

Mark & Graham: Mini Travel Poker Set

$59.99 | Take your card game on the road with this compact poker set — currency, cigars and opponents not included. Gamble that flight delay away with a deck of playing cards, a variety of dice and 40 blue and red chips. Now boarding? Close the faux leather box, and walk away a winner.

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from MarkAndGraham.com

Humangear: GoToob

Three pack, $13.69 | Who needs “travel size” toiletries? This trio of squeezable silicone containers allows space- and waste-conscious travelers to pack their favorite beauty and bath products in carry-on approved, three-ounce bottles that can be reused indefinitely. Travel. Rinse. Repeat.

Buy
from Amazon.com

Sony: Noise Canceling Headphones

$348 | The aural backdrop of modern travel isn’t known for its soothing qualities. Fight back! With these wireless, noise canceling headphones, you can substitute Rachmaninoff for gate announcements, revving engines and the hacking cough of the passenger in the next seat.

Buy
from Amazon.com

Rockstar: Red Dead Redemption 2

Mature | PlayStation 4, Xbox One

From $59.88 | Easily the most anticipated release of the year, the prequel to an eight-year-old game not only inspired “Westworld,” but is sometimes heralded as the greatest game of all time. It’s an open-world western, a rich time period barely covered in games. And why bother? Rockstar owns the genre. — Gene Park

Buy
from Amazon.com

Bethesda: Fallout 76

Rating pending | PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Windows

$59.99 | For years, gamers demanded a Bethesda game like “Skyrim” or “Fallout” to be playable with friends. This is exactly that game. It takes place just over two decades after the nuclear apocalypse, and you and other friends team up to “rebuild America.” It’s a new way to experience the classic Bethesda formula. (Releasing Nov. 14.) — Gene Park

Buy
from Amazon.com

Ubisoft: Assassin’s Creed Odyssey

Mature | PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Windows

$57.79 | Set in Greece during the Peloponnesian War, this is the first game in the long-running series to enable story choice, starting with choosing a man or woman as the lead role. The game’s historical details also make it educational. It’s virtual tourism of ancient human history. — Gene Park

Buy
from Amazon.com

Activision: Call of Duty Black Ops 4

Mature | PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Windows

From $58.89 | If there’s any franchise that could threaten Fortnite’s stronghold on popular culture it is Call of Duty. It features its own “battle royale” mode that turned Fortnite into a cultural phenomenon. But where Fortnite’s feels rickety and loose, COD promises to be a juggernaut with airtight mechanics. — Gene Park

Buy
from Amazon.com

Sony: Marvel’s Spider-Man

Teen | PlayStation 4

$59.68 | The finest Spider-Man game since 2004 is also the finest Spider-Man tale spun for mainstream consumption. It portrays a far more accurate and complex portrayal of Peter Parker than the films. It’s perfect for any superhero fan because it could be the greatest superhero game ever. — Gene Park

Buy
from Amazon.com

Capcom: Monster Hunter World

Teen | PlayStation 4, Xbox One and Windows

$29.99 | One of the most popular franchises finally got an update with a practically endless gameplay loop of, well, hunting monsters. It uses the spoils to get stronger weapons and armor to hunt even stronger monsters. For anyone interested in the series, this is the perfect entry point. — Gene Park

Buy
from Amazon.com

Sold Out: Overcooked! 2

Everyone | Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, Windows

$29.99 | As many as four players collaborate to prepare and cook orders in several restaurant settings. This version adds new themes, interactive levels, costumes and recipes, offers online multiplayer and the ability to toss raw ingredients to other players. Chefs, get ready, because this game gets cooking fast. — Tom Ham

Buy
from Amazon.com

Nintendo: Pokémon: Let’s Go, Pikachu!

Everyone | Nintendo Switch

$59.99 | The gameplay is similar to previous Pokémon games — you explore the world, capture Pokémon and fight other trainers in turn-based combat. But this time you can capture Pokémon by throwing a new peripheral called the Poke Ball Plus, which has a built-in joystick and thankfully a strap. You might also like Let’s Go, Eevee! (Releasing Nov. 16.) — Tom Ham

Buy
from Amazon.com

Activision: Spyro Reignited Trilogy

Everyone 10+ | Xbox One, PlayStation 4

$39.99 | Spyro came out 20 years ago, and this HD-remastered collection of Spyro’s first three games features all of the colorful worlds, zany characters and challenging bosses of the originals. The platform game requires players to perfectly time their jumps and glides to get the cute fire-breathing dragon through levels. — Tom Ham

Buy
from Amazon.com

Nintendo: Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

Everyone 10+ | Nintendo Switch

$59.99 | This fifth installment in this series sports the biggest roster of fighters in a Super Smash Bros. game. In addition to fighters’ usual moves and special attacks, Ultimate has new attacks and faster combat. Up to eight players can fight one another online or on the same console. — Tom Ham

Buy
from Amazon.com

Capcom: Mega Man 11

Everyone 10+ | Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch

$29.99 | Players take control of the cute android as he attempts to stop Dr. Wily from causing chaos with his collection of Robot Masters. Just as in previous Mega Man games, the difficulty is high and the platforming is solid. Players will be jumping, sliding and shooting enemies from every angle. — Tom Ham

Buy
from Amazon.com

Poketo: Circle Comb

$18 | A pretty, yet functional stocking stuffer you might want to cop for yourself. This slim comb in a blue acetate has wide teeth to better handle a variety of textures (though not everyone’s) and lengths.

Buy
from Poketo.com

Fenty Beauty: Fairy Bomb

$42 | A little sparkle never hurt anyone. The soft, oversized poof is packed with 3D glitter to dust over your skin — or anything else that could use a pick me up. The superfine sparkle carries a gentle vanilla coconut scent, and the rose color glows on a variety of skin tones.

Buy
from FentyBeauty.com

VicTsing: Cool Mist Humidifier and Essential Oil Diffuser

$27.99 | Everything about this simple humidifier is soothing: the look and shape, and the undulating light show. With a few drops of oil — sold separately — this becomes a nice diffuser. The waterless auto-off function means you can leave it on as you fall asleep without worrying it’ll be on all night.

Buy
from Amazon.com

Rocabi: Adult Weighted Blanket

$169 | Give the gift of a nice night of sleep with a weighted blanket. Engineered to simulate the feeling of being held, this blanket is said to help reduce anxiety and ease restless sleep. The Rocabi comes in a variety of weights depending on the size of the gift recipient.

Buy
from Rocabi.com

Garmin: Vivomove HR Watch

From $196.24 | A stylish smartwatch that keeps you connected and can help you monitor your stress. This Garmin watch tracks your heart rate, stress levels, REM sleep and includes a relaxation timer. Plus, it comes in a trendy rose gold. Styles and prices vary.

Buy
from Amazon.com

Society Nine: Women’s Bia Boxing Gloves

$79 | The company says its mission is "celebrating the fight in every woman" and, of course, to provide quality gear. The Bia gloves support women’s hands with more a shallow and narrow design than traditional boxing gloves. Fun fact: Society Nine’s name is a nod to Title IX.

Buy
from SocietyNine.com

Selected by

Trigger Point Performance: AcuCurve Massage Cane

$16.99 | It’s a massage on a stick, and at nine ounces, it’s lightweight and designed to get at those hard to reach places. Use it after a hard workout or to work out stiff muscles after a day at your desk job.

Buy
from Amazon.com

Pinch Me: Therapy Dough

$25 | A fun way to get some stress-relief at your desk or wherever you need to unwind. The Pinch Me dough is infused with a scent of your choosing that lingers after you put it away. The texture and soothing colors can help refresh the day and refocus your attention.

Buy
from TheGrommet.com

Uncommon Goods: Drink More Water Bottle

$19.99 | A cute reminder to stay hydrated. Dehydration can cause a fuzzy memory, fatigue and trouble reading small print. This Uncommon Goods water bottle holds 16 ounces of water and cheers you on with messages to remind you how much to drink and when to refill during the day.

Buy
from UncommonGoods.com

The Face Shop: Real Nature Full Face Masks (15 pack)

$14.95 | A day of pampering can be as simple as a feel-good face mask. The Face Shop, a South Korean-based staple, offers packs of masks made of cotton leaves containing serums produced from natural ingredients such as cucumber, green tea or kelp to address whatever needs your skin might have.

Buy
from Amazon.com

Lush: Fresh & Fancy Gift Box

$29.95 | Lush does the hard work for you and packages three of its cult products into one affordable package. This gift box includes a pretty handmade soap, a mineral-rich scrub and a salt and seaweed bath bomb.

Buy
from LushUSA.com

Paper Source: Bamboo Bathtub Caddy

$39.95 | Face mask? Check. Bath bomb? Check. Oil diffuser? Uh huh. Add this bamboo bathtub caddy and you’re most of the way to a home day spa. The caddy has extendable metal arms to better customize to your tub with plenty of room for a book and glass of wine.

Buy
from PaperSource.com

Lite + Cycle: Organic Lip Save

$5 | A lip balm is a low maintenance way to freshen up. The organic balm is made with natural oils, including sunflower oil, beeswax and extra virgin olive oil. It’s also dye and sulfate free and biodegradable, so you won’t experience any buyer’s (environmental) remorse. Plus the peppermint oil gives it a little kick.

Buy
from LiteandCycleShop.com

The RunnerBox: The RunnerBox subscription

$20 every two months | The curated box is dedicated to sharing the best endurance nutrition and gear. Items you might find in a box include electrolyte mixes, hydration gels and running gum. What makes it even cooler? The company was founded by Staci Dietzel, who just completed a marathon on all seven continents. It also offers a TriBox and a CycleBox.

Buy
from TheRunnerBox.com

Selected by

(Amazon.com founder and CEO Jeffrey P. Bezos owns The Washington Post. We review all products with the same critical eye.)

Books

Your favorite readers need gifts, but with thousands of 2018 releases to choose from, narrowing things down is no small task. We’re here for you with recommendations for bookworms of all stripes.

Food

Food and drinks are the perfect gift for the person who has it all — they are thoughtful but come with an expiration date. (But we’ve tacked on a few long-lasting items, for good measure.)

Home

For the holidays or a housewarming, these gifts are functional, fun and lovely to look at, too.

Self-care

Take care of your loved ones with these thoughtful stress relievers. Or, just treat yourself.

Tech

What’s a better gift than the future? These are the innovative gadgets and services we’ve tried and loved over the past year.

Toys

Toy expert Stephanie Oppenheim gives a sampling of the best toys of 2018 from the Oppenheim Toy Portfolio, celebrating its 20th anniversary this year.

Travel

Being there is great. Getting there? Not so much. Make life a little easier — or comfier or drier — for the traveler in your life with these gift ideas.

Video games

The Post’s Gene Park and KidsPost video game reviewer Tom Ham reveal their picks for the holidays. 2018 has one of the most stacked release schedules in years.

About this project

Projects editor: Alexa McMahon; Designer: Jake Crump; Photo editor: May-Ying Lam; Photographer: Katherine Frey; Copy editor: Sue Doyle; Editors and reporters: Nicole Arthur, Christina Barron, Geoffrey Fowler, Kara Elder, Tom Ham, Kendra Nichols, Everdeen Mason, Stephanie Merry, Gene Park, Andrea Sachs, Marylou Tousignant, Joe Yonan; Editorial aides: Hau Chu, Nicole Chung, Dara Elasfar, Megan McDonough, Savannah Stephens. Hulu photo provided by Hulu. Apple Watch photo provided by Apple.

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