Bookstore: Ben Franklin & Mindfair Books
Oberlin screams books, learning and enrichment. But it also fits in beauty, arts, community and a little bit of quirk. Ben Franklin & Mindfair Books embraces all of that. You can pop in quickly to grab a new novel — at 10 to 25 percent off the publisher list price. But it’s better to take your time and explore the surprising offers from yarn and frames to art supplies and houseplants. There’s stuff for the kids, too. Little knowledge seekers will love “Cheer Up Ben Franklin” ($9.99), which is, fittingly, part of a series of Young Historians books that spotlight key people in our history in one-line pages geared toward young children. They’ll be head of the class before it starts. 
13 W. College St., Oberlin, 440-774-5711

Boutique: The Mermaid’s Tale 
If you can’t find a gift for that special lady in your life — or a just-because treat for yourself — here then you might not be looking hard enough. It’s a dazzling display of jewelry and trinkets and fashions — oh my! Trend setters can add a pop of elegance to a classic ensemble with this breezy scarf from Spartina 449 ($42) that’s stitched with minimal yet impactful gold designs. Finish the look with a handmade bauble by Dune Jewelry, which uses sand from popular beaches. Show your love of Lorain County with this gold bangle ($51), which incorporates sand from Lakeview Park Beach in Lorain. 
201 Church St., Amherst, 440-988-7826,

Florist: Puffers Floral Shoppe 
If you want to send someone a beautiful bouquet of fragrant flowers this is the place to stop. Its staff members can expertly craft just the right one at the price point you want. But you’d be remiss if you didn’t also explore its several rooms full of accessories, home décor items and a wealth of gift ideas with a fun twist. Grab a Stony Creek vase to showcase some of those colorful blooms. The clear crackle glass is already decorated with a sophisticated floral motif and lit from within by a string light (small vase $29.99, large vase $39.99). It would make for a memorable hostess or housewarming gift — if you can bear to give it away. 
821 River St., Elyria, 440-323-5421,