So, now that Hamilton County primaries have wrapped, maybe your mailbox will once again be a temporary repository for wayward junk mailers and charitable requests.

And for the time being, graduation and wedding invitations.

Looking for the best gifts to congratulate this season's brides and grooms, well, heeding the advice from assistant coach Larry Hockett from "Bull Durham" — "Candlesticks always make a nice gift. Maybe find out where they're registered and maybe a place-setting or maybe a silverware pattern. OK, let's get two." — is a fail-safe starting point.

But for graduations, well, that gets a little more tricky. Sure, cash stands the test of time, and one size fits all, you know?

Let's explore another half dozen or so ideas to honor soon-to-be grads, but let's do so with the following caveat: If your beloved Johnny or Janie is "graduating" from kindergarten, elementary school or middle school, well, modern terminology aside, that's not really a graduation. That's a grade promotion with the need to move on to a new building next year. That feels more like relocating than graduating to me, but hey, knock yourself out if the mood strikes you.

Good? Good.

For the other graduation mailers, we'll start with a pro tip, if it applies: Make sure to double-check (for me, that means ask the Mrs.) what your graduates in previous years received from the families you are now considering on the gift calendar. No one wants to be the family that hands out the $12 monthly cheese club membership to the family that sent your beloved Junior $250, you know?

As for actual options, one of the trendy internet suggestions is a gift card from, which allows the recipient to find wall art online that gets shipped by email and ready to be downloaded. Talk about modern art.

Stylish carrying cases for laptops could fill a need, and if you are flush with extra cash this time of year, a new set of luggage would be something a grad might need — and enjoy — more than they realize. (And if you have kids younger than the recipient, hey, you are really paying that forward.)

Saw this one too — a self-cleaning water bottle, which feels especially appropriate for high school graduates who will a) be challenged at their next learning endeavor when they have to handle their own dishes and messes and b) may or may not find new ways to be dehydrated on occasion.

Other ideas range from coffee subscriptions and new linens to college logo gear and gasoline gift cards.

Of course, if Democrats get their way and the government pays off everyone's student loans, well, we'll all be passing some dollars to college grads sooner rather than later.

Contact Jay Greeson at or 423-757-6273. Follow him on Twitter @jgreesontfp.

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Jay Greeson