Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Holiday Gift Guide for Law Students

December is almost here, which means the law students in your life are preparing for the end of fall classes and their final exams. Since 2009, the Goodson Blogson has put together a small gift idea list for your favorite future lawyers.

Attorney/blogger Reid Trautz has already released his annual gift guide for lawyers, which include "the world’s first smart earplugs" by Hush Technology. These Bluetooth earplugs can reduce ambient noise by 30 decibels, and can also be set to play noise-masking sounds in order to reduce up to 40 additional decibels. Although the plugs are designed mainly to help with a better night's sleep (currently they cannot be set to play a user's own music), law students may appreciate the noise-masking features when studying for finals in the library, or trying to catch a mid-flight nap while traveling to callback interviews.

If your law student would prefer a more versatile set of noise-cancelling earbuds, check out the brand recommendations at, which also offers a round-up of best over-ear headphones under $100.

Although it's been featured every year in the Goodson Blogson holiday gift guide, we just can't ignore the unique law-related items at the Supreme Court Historical Society Gift Shop. Our top picks there this year for the law students you love are two attractive and budget-conscious travel mug options, each bearing the Court's seal. Top them off with a gift card to your student's local coffee joints (Cocoa Cinnamon is a Durham favorite), or a bag of gourmet coffee for home-brewing.

Beer mug patent poster from National ArchivesOther government agency gift shops, such as the National Archives & Records Administration, offer unique items as well, many of which have law themes. Law students with a home bar to decorate might welcome one of several NARA boozy poster prints, including a Prohibition-era closure notice, an 1876 beer mug patent illustration, or a 1934 "cocktail construction chart" authored by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Other items in the NARA shop include presidential Pez dispensers, an umbrella adorned with the text of the U.S. Constitution, and an assortment of military-style tote bags and backpacks.

Maybe your law student could use some pampering. A gift certificate to a nearby day spa, hair salon, or massage parlor could do wonders for a frazzled law student during finals. Meal delivery services like Blue Apron or HelloFresh can also relieve the stress of grocery shopping during difficult times of the semester.

Does your shopping list include someone with…unusual tastes? You might find the perfect off-kilter item at GovDeals, an auction site for government agencies who dispose of surplus equipment or confiscated items. While the average holiday shopper probably won't be in the market for a gently-used fire truck, there are categories for art, photography equipment, jewelry, and confiscated personal items which may fit the bill. Note that while GovDeals operates similarly to consumer auction sites like eBay, many of its sellers do not offer shipping or packing services; pickup may be required and can often be arranged with a local third-party service, but read the auction terms carefully.

Shipping may pose problems for gifts from GovDeals, but remember that hundreds of popular online retailers will participate in Free Shipping Day on December 17. With guaranteed Christmas Eve delivery, this is a good option for last-minute shoppers. Other shipping deals and coupon codes for your favorite gift sites can be found at RetailMeNot. And of course, don't forget your local merchants this holiday season, whether it’s on Small Business Saturday or any other time.

Happy holidays to all of our readers!

Previous Goodson Blogson gift guides: