The No-Nonsense Holiday Gift Guide, Part 2

No-Nonsense Holiday GiftsHere is my special friends holiday  list. Maybe I’m over thinking   this list, but its important to me that  each gift  genuinely match each friend. In past years, I would brave crowds of shoppers then  search out boxes for shipping, then stand in post office lines and pay hefty fees for  shipping.  That was then, this is now.  I now click my  way to find the best of the best  and even better the sellers wrap and ship— often without cost. FYI  I am not affiliated with any of these companies and do not receive commission.


The Top Ten  No-Nonsense Holiday Gifts

1.   French Chic by Tish Jett ( Rizzoli, $30)

My neighbor just came back from her first trip to Paris and like most women, she  was mesmerized by   the seemingly inherent style of  French women.  She  was almost obsessed in deconstructing  their look–  was  it in the scarf? The hair?  The fit of the coat?   I’m giving her the  answers she wants with a copy of French Chic. Written by the founder of the uber popular blog, A  Femme of a Certain Age, French Chic ( Rizzoli, $ 30), it  drills down  into the secrets of french style to provide easy to follow rules and suggestions.  Even better, it is aimed  for  women  who as Tish puts it  “the last time   they saw 40  was on a speedometer”.  Its availability on Amazon  which means  it can  arrive in less than three days.

2. Do It Yourself Lotion Kit 

Despite my  passion for all things beauty, I rarely give skin care products. But I have two DIY friends  who are always trying out  new recipes for kitchen cosmetics.   For them I have ordered this kit from Made On ( $45).  It contains measured quantities  of ingredients  like shea butter and   beeswax  and  necessary equipment  like an eyedropper and containers for lip balm. Well-written  instructions plus an e-book to create more  DIY products make this  my favorite gift for  homegrown cosmetic chemists.

3.  Sun Protective Tee Shirt

Since a close friend died  from melanoma, I have become fairly  obsessed with  sun protection.  Both my daughters spend  their  winter vacation running after  small children with  tubes of  sunblock.  Since I can’t be there  to  make sure  they apply and reapply sunscreen to their own  limbs, these long sleeve shirts from( Coolibar, $45)  with a UPF of 50+ will do the job for me.  I got one in hot  pink for my extrovert and a white tee for  my quiet child.

4. Unique Travel Tags

I have several friends who were born with the travel gene.  Over the years, they have brought home tons of souvies and the last thing they need is  something else to   put away  For them, these unique travel tags ( Inventive Travel Ware, $5.00)  will be something they can  actually enjoy using. I usually send  a selection of four  different tags.  These bright colored plastic tags include:

*A blue tag that says”  Please don’t take my bag, I’m too old to chase you”

* A pink tag that says”  Take  my luggage, do my laundry”

* A purple tag that says” Keep looking, I think  yours is a different shade of black”

And MLF, have a fabulous trip to Russia.

5. Bark Box– gift box for pets

For friends with fur babies, a Bark Box  with  toys and treats is always   welcome.  They are assembled according to the size of the pet and  have equally  useful  gift boxes for cats.  While you can get a multi month subscription, a single box for a  small dog  is  less than $30.

6.  Blow-Out with  Blo

One of the best  things about blogging is that you make so  many great friends  across the country. One dear  online friend keeps telling me I have  great hair and I keep telling her I  just  have a great blow-out.  This year I saw that   Blo, a blow dry chain , opened  in her hometown of Tampa , and  I down loaded a gift certificate ( $45)  for her   just in time for New Year’s Eve.  Blo is  a nationwide chain backed by Gweneth Paltrow.  Her stick straight hair  has inspired an generation  and now  top quality styling is available just about everywhere in the US.

7. The Perfect Gift for Book Lovers That is Not a Book

My son in law is a big Ayn Rand fan. When I discovered  an Atlas Shrugged tee shirt from  The Out of Print Clothing Company, I knew I had  found a great  ‘ I get you”  gift. He loved it and often wears it when we get together. My husband  collects vintage science fiction and  was equally happy with  his  Farenheit 451 tee.   I find it very difficult to give presents to  men, and  these tees seem to   hit the sweet  spot of guy gifts– personal, but not too personal.

8.  Shark Tank  Book

I have  several   friends  who share  my  obsession with Shark Tank.  We watch and discuss it as if it  was a course at  Harvard Business School.  I wanted to send them a set of Shark Tank of DVD’s, but it was only available  in a streaming  download and I can’t figure out how to gift wrap that version.  Instead I  found a wonderful  book by Shark Tank superstar, Lori Grenier . Invent It, Sell It, Bank It:  Make Your Million Dollar Idea Into a Reality ( $18) is packed with the same type of   no-nonsense business advice that makes  Shark Tank so addicting.

9. DIY Cheesekit 

I have to admit  that my other foodie friends and I  sort of compete to see who  can find the  coolest  cooking/eating  gift. Sometimes its a tool  and other years  its a basket of unusual   ingredients.  This year I  think  I cranked it up a bit with  DIY  kits for homemade string cheese from William Sonoma ( $40).   I haven’t tried  it yet so it  will be an experiment  for all of us.  But they are true  foodies and  even failures are interesting.

10. Holiday Gift Box from Omaha Steaks

My webmaster is one of the most important  people in my life.  She  is always there to talk me down from the ceiling  when Google or WordPress  change the rules of the game.  She  has  a large, adorable  family and I love to  imagine     their enthusiasm when they open up a box of  holiday  foods from Omaha Steaks. More than just  delicious  meat, the  box also includes items like  stuffed potatoes and a chocolate cake.


2 thoughts on “The No-Nonsense Holiday Gift Guide, Part 2

  1. I got the notification today in my email that I was going to be receiving something from Omaha Steaks from you, Deb! Then I saw your post – what an amazingly thoughtful and creative gift — you are truly the best. 🙂 Love you, my friend!

    • You are my lifeline to sanity in the online universe. You are always there for me. Looking forward to showing you and katie my city.

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