Amazon Prime Membership
If they don’t already have a subscription to Amazon prime, it’s your duty to bring them out of the dark ages. It’s a gift that keeps on giving, and you can get it for them right now. They’ll get free shipping on tons of great stuff from Amazon as well as access to a bizillion movies for free.
Need an idea that you can actually do later instead? Set up a day to be their personal butler and take care of them the way that they think they deserve. Buttle them good, go all out on this one. For one day, your name is Jeeves and you’re willing to perform any task they desire with the greatest candor and professionalism.
Imagine their surprise when you tell them you're on the way to pick them up, and then roll up in a stretch limo. Rent it for a few hours so they have enough time to make several stops. Do some normal stuff, but in a limo - maybe take them to the drug store or to get groceries. Then go out on the town for dinner and drinks (or just drink in the limo). Take a limo to the mall for a shopping spree and score double points. On any given day there are plenty of limos available to rent immediately in most cities. It'll be fun for you too, and they'll tell stories about it for years.
If you want a last minute gift that doesn’t seem like one, you can get an instant subscription to the Adobe Creative Suite in their name. It will give them access to the most powerful creative applications on Earth, well, in the cloud actually. They’ll be able to make professional videos, animations, music, websites, graphic artwork and more, and of course, they’ll always have the latest version of Photoshop.
For a parent juggling a million things at once, sometimes the very best gift is simply a chance to get away from it all. Make a coupon for a night or two of free babysitting. It will only take you a few minutes to put together, and it will definitely be appreciated. Show me a parent who doesn’t want a night away from the kids, and I’ll show you a parent that has forgotten that they need to take care of themselves too.
A Costco membership can save someone a lot of money, eventually, after they actually use up those 200 rolls of toilet paper, that 20 pound block of cheese, and pallet of Raisin Bran. You can visit the Costco website and set up a membership for someone as a gift and they can get the actual membership card later.
Truly a gift that will make them scream, and if it doesn't the corkscrew roller coaster will. Buy tickets for the two of you online and print them out at home. At the birthday celebration you can put the tickets in a card and figure out a time when you can make the trip. They'll remember the experience forever, which is much more valuable than any doodad, whosie-whatsit or thingamajig.
Help someone get away and recharge in a faraway place where nobody knows them and they can act however they want with virtually no longstanding social repercussions. Because when things get tough, evacuation is usually the only solution.
Leaving gift shopping till the last minute is part of human nature it seems. Everyone does it, so don’t feel bad. The trick is finding something that doesn’t look like a last minute attempt. Luckily there are a ton of great subscription services you can order online right now, like a weekly delivery of fresh, locally grown produce. You’ll be doing them a favor in more ways than one, and each time a new delivery arrives they’ll think of you, and how you always give the most amazing gifts. You’re welcome.