wrapped gift with a bow ribbon around it.

Stacy Gittleman
Contributing Writer

Whether the loved ones on your gift list just have too much stuff, or they have a favorite hobby you’d love to help them indulge, try this: Offer them an experience or a service they would not think of getting for themselves. There are so many experiences to give — from culinary sessions and art classes to photography portraits and more. Or, give them a gift certificate to try out the newest Pilates or yoga studios in town. Here, a few of our favorites:

LINDSAY JAYE PHOTOGRAPHY of a mother and her baby. The mom is looking at the baby and the baby is looking at the camera.

LINDSAY JAYE PHOTOGRAPHY Lindsay Cox has always loved taking pictures, but after she became mom to Sydney in 2013, she turned her passion into a profession. “I am self-taught and constantly learning and reinventing myself,” she says. “I live for capturing unforgettable moments on camera that will be forever cherished.” A $575 gift certificate includes a 1-2-hour premier photography session, 35 edited and retouched images in an online gallery, a 4×6 printed photo of each chosen photo and lots more. Lindsayjayephotography.com.

a table with lots of food on it and drinks and a bunch of hands seen from above.

CULINARY ART THERAPY uses cooking as a means of communication and expression. The benefits of Culinary Art Therapy include gaining insight into one’s behavior, learning about social skills/cues, increased awareness about health and nutrition, stress and time management and increased self-esteem, plus the recipient of this gift gets the satisfaction of sitting down to a delicious, nutritious meal prepared by herself, with friends or family. Culinary Art Therapy is offering gift certificates starting at $150 for individual, family, small or large group experiences. Owner Julie Ohana will work with the recipient of the certificate on menu, program specifics and price per session. Culinaryarttherapy.com.

a bunch of women and men doing pilates in a gym
Jackie Headapohl | Detroit Jewish News

With studios all over the Metro Detroit Area, CLUB PILATES has opened its newest location in the Crosswinds Plaza in West Bloomfield. Pilates offers more than just low-impact, full-body workouts. With a range of class offerings that challenge your mind as well as your body, Club Pilates provides a path to a richer, more fulfilling life. The studio is offering free introductory classes as well as gift certificates. Clubpilates.com.

a woman doing yoga on a yoga mat. She is laying with her head down and her arms outstretched.

STACY BISHOP, certified yoga and personal trainer, will travel to your home, business, school or studio to offer group or family yoga and meditation sessions. She’s taught yoga/meditation to clients of all ages, from preschoolers to senior citizens. According to Stacy, it’s what many successful business leaders, doctors, fitness experts and health coaches are encouraging their patients, clients and students to do on a regular basis. For gift certificates, visit stacybishopbalance.com.

beautycounter makeup with some foundations and lotions, lip gloss, and an open mascara.

BEAUTYCOUNTER Lindsey Barnett offers gift certificates for personalized skincare regimens or cosmetics color matching from a line of alternative products that are free from many chemicals found in conventional products. A full list of products and gift certificate options can be found at beautycounter.com.

six little girls in stand in a row facing the camera wearing leotards with dance skirts and ballet slippers.

Shanon Stibor of SHANON’S DANCE ACADEMY in Keego Harbor offers gift certificates for dance classes and dancewear. New classes are forming in December offering the opportunity for dancers ages 2½ and up to learn ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical and pointe. Shanonsdance.com.

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Stacy Gittleman is an award-winning journalist and has been a contributing writer for the Detroit Jewish News for the last five years. Prior to moving to Metro Detroit in 2013, she was a columnist and feature writer for Gannett's Democrat & Chronicle in Rochester, NY. She also manages social media pages for other local non-profit organizations including the Interfaith Leadership Council of Metropolitan Detroit. Contact her with breaking news and feature story ideas that impact Detroit's Jewish community at stacy.gittleman@yahoo.com