I love shopping at museum stores and the gift shops of other nonprofit organizations. It makes me feel like I'm giving twice by not only purchasing a gift for someone on my holiday shopping list, but by supporting the museum or nonprofit organization where I make my purchase.
One such organization is the Effie Yeaw Nature Center, a 77-acre preserve in Carmichael where generations of local children have experienced the wonders of nature. The Discovery Shop at Effie Yeaw sells books, cards, games, and toys to help enhance the appreciation of nature by the children on your shopping list, as well as local field guides, books, and gift items for the adults on your list. And walking the Effie Yeaw nature trails while you're there will help you neutralize some of the extra pounds that you may have picked up at all of the holiday parties!
Another fun place to look for unique holiday items is the gift shop at the California Museum, where you can buy interesting stocking stuffers, holiday decorations, and hostess gifts.
While you're there, check out the California Museum's Health Happens Here exhibit. They have lots of interactive displays about the various factors that contribute to a healthy community.