Holiday Gift Guide – Part 2
BY SUSAN HORNIK
With so many choices for gift giving during the holidays, Fiftyisthenewfifty.com’s Susan Hornik put together her annual “What I’m Grateful For” guide to thoughtful recommendations for anyone on your holiday list. Whether it’s for your husband, wife, mom or grandchild, we have something lovely for you! This is part 2 of our guide.
For the Home
DiaNoche Designs illuminates and decorates homes with stunning illuminated wall art, bedding, shower curtains and more! www.dianochedesigns.com Add an artistic touch to your kitchen with one of their sturdy and stylish tempered glass cutting boards. They make a great conversation piece and serving tray for those wine and cheese gatherings. Choose from dazzling images, a striking pattern, or customize it with your favorite photo or child’s drawing. They make great gifts for the holidays, weddings, anniversaries, or a house warming and won’t break the bank. Don’t forget to personalize this with their monogram and personalization options.
Create a special place for your inner romantic with the Under the Canopy Lover Duvet Cover Set, made with 100% GOTS-certified organic cotton. This bed cover has a soft, poetic, and flirty design perfect for the lover in you. Best of all, it’s reversible! Tori Spelling recently had her bedroom updated with beautiful Under the Canopy home products. The beautiful bedding features an enchanting dreamcatcher design in hues of blue and periwinkle.
Topanga Candle Company was inspired by business owners Dinah Englund’s incredible sense of aesthetic, love of design and all things beautiful, coupled with Tom Vogel’s more than twenty year journey of candle making, crafting and pouring, bringing the art of candles to a stunning, achingly beautiful and original design. They regularly search the world for one of a kind tins and hand pour them at their production office in Topanga Canyon. These candles are made of paraffin- the same as soy ~ and they don’t use whales to make it. It even has an organic cotton wick.
Warner Home Video:
THE PERFECT STALKING STUFFER FOR EVERYONE ON YOUR LIST!!
– “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation”
– “ Scrooged”
– “A Christmas Story”
– “Mad Max Fury Road”
– “San Andreas”
– “The Man From U.N.C.L.E.”
SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE
– “Almost Famous”
– “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off”
– “Forest Gump”
– “Mean Girls”
– “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”
– “Escape From Alcatraz”
BEST CHRISTMAS MOVIES NOT ABOUT CHRISTMAS
– “Trading Places”
– “Lethal Weapon”
– “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang”
COLLECTIONS FOR THE MOVIE BUFF
– “Horror Classics Collection, Vol. 1” From Hammer Films, the studio that reinvented Horror icons for the modern audience
– “Special Effects Collection” Classic films from 1930’s to 1950’s
– “The Hobbit Trilogy Extended Edition”
One of my favorite “stocking stuffers” is WHOOSH! Screen Shine, an all-natural, non-toxic screen cleaner for mobile and tablet devices. WHOOSH! Screen Shine is the safe way to clean, polish, and protect all your mobile devices from the “gunk” that accumulates through touching it with your fingers or puttting your phone up to your face to make calls. It’s made with non-toxic and biodegradable surfactants instead of with harsh chemicals that can damage mobile devices. WHOOSH! leaves an ultra-thin invisible coating that provides a resistance to dirt build-up, smudges, and fingerprints. It does not contain alcohol, acids, ammonia, chlorine, petroleum distillates, phosphates or volatile organic compounds. Additionally, each package of WHOOSH! comes with a special cloth that has been treated with antimicrobial product to protect the fabric and mobile device screens against scuffs and scratches while cleaning.
The Apple Watch is projected to be a huge gift this year. To complement the new gadget, Trident Case just released their all-new Apple Valet– an elegant Apple Watch and iPhone Charging station for the home. With a premium leather finish, plush interior lining, and a built-in 2600mAH lithium battery, the charger has an elegant style that blends well with interior decor- opposed to starkly standing out like the traditional charger.
Artisanal furniture designer Cimarron has a beautiful piece, a coffee pour-over stand. A simple yet elegant mix of hand-crafted materials, the stand features wood uprights that grab onto a cross piece which support handmade ceramic cones. Used for the filters and coffee, a cast concrete base rests on the bottom of the stand and supports coffee cups. The bases are cast with a drip reservoir to catch any extra coffee, to minimize mess and make clean up easy. Other pieces being sold: “Caulos” plant stand, “Chameleon” coffee table, “Skylight” coffee table, “Lydia” console table and “China” end table. Also on display will be a variety of cast concrete panels (interchangeable tops for Chameleon) and tiles (used to demonstrate cast concrete color potential). Cimarron-studio.com
Objects With Purpose, the wearable candle was created by Ianthe Mauro. The candle can do anything—perfume, massage oil, cleanest burning candle. Every scent tells a story—all you need to do is smooth the soft coconut butter wax on your skin as a soothing body butter. For fiftyisthenewfifty.com readers, Ianthe is offering a special sale:
Use code: unicorn
Get 20% off each item
For the Foodie
If ever there is a natural disaster, you need to have water on hand. Blue Can provides premium emergency drinking water for homes, businesses and vehicles. Using a high-tech filtration system including sterilization that, once placed in aluminum cans under pressure, allows the water to stay 100% pure and fresh for decades, Blue Can supports the Emergency Water Foundation. www.bluecanwater.com
The California Fruit Wine Company was founded by twin brothers Alan and Brian Haghighi. After discovering that wine could be fermented from any fruit, the brothers made it their mission to unveil fruit wine to the world, because they figured, why should grapes have all the fun? They scraped together $12,500, started making their first batches of wine and within a year were selling fruit wine at street fairs and farmers markets throughout San Diego County. Today, they’re in Whole Foods across the Southwest, in HEB in Texas and spreading fast. They’re in Whole Foods across the Southwest, in HEB in Texas and spreading fast.
Last year, The New York Distilling Company revitalized the tradition of enjoying rock candy infused rye with its release of the devilishly moreish Mister Katz’s Rock & Rye. Made popular in the late 1800’s this “age of old” spirit begins with a youthful rye, tempered with rock candy sugar, dried cherries, cinnamon and orange peel – lending itself as a great addition to cocktails as well as to be enjoyed solely on its own. With its historic American nostalgia, Rock & Rye is a firm favorite with whiskey enthusiasts and has proved a sensation with the new wave of female rye drinkers. With it’s ability to evoke heart-warming sentiment for many, Rock & Rye is the ideal generous gift, perfectly fitting for the ultimate indulgence holiday season allows. The rye retails at $32 and you can find out more here: http://www.nydistilling.com/, please also see the image attached.
My next suggestion is for the true whiskey lover; Knappogue Castle 16 Year Old single malt Irish whiskey, is a wonderful gift for those Christmas shoppers looking for something remarkable for their loved one. The distillery produces only 4,500 bottles per year and each one is individually numbered, labeled and signed. Made with malted barley and pure Irish spring water, Knappogue 16yo, is aged in two types of wood; it spends 14 years in bourbon barrels and 21 months in Oloroso sherry casks. The delicate distillation process, the moist and temperate Irish climate, and the special aging technique yield the distinct flavor of this collector’s item whiskey. Retailing at $100, Knappogue Castle 16yo is best enjoyed neat or on the rocks. More information and images can be found here: http://www.knappoguewhiskey.com/vintageroom/
NEW Limited Edition Holiday Bottles: Absolut Electrik
The striking metallic design is available in a silver and sapphire holiday color palette nationwide for a limited time starting October 1, 2015 ($19.99 for 750ml and $24.99 for 1L).
*NEW* VERTUOLINE EVOLUO
The VertuoLine™ Evoluo expands the VertuoLine™ machine range and features an updated style and added convenient features. It brews both large-cup coffee and authentic espresso using revolutionary Centrifusion™ technology. This unique and innovative technology guarantees each cup of coffee is brewed to perfection and finished with a silky and generous crema – a sign of world-class coffee.
• Brews 14 VertuoLine™ Grand Cru Coffees – 10 Coffee, 4 Espresso
• Available in 5 colors: Titan, Silver, Piano Black, Cherry Red, Grey
• Price: $199 – $249 (depending size)
AEROCCINO+ MILK FROTHER
For the milk lover – The Aeroccino Plus produces exceptional quality, light, creamy hot or cold milk froth in just a few seconds with a touch of a button.
• Price: $99
NutriBullet is the world’s first nutrient extractor; taking whole fruits and vegetables and transforming them into superfoods through cyclonic action with our specialized blades and powerful motor. The NutriBullet is an ideal tool for health-conscious individuals looking to fuel their busy lives while simultaneously taking charge of their health. The company has multiple extractors – their 600 unit (their original and useful one for those taking their first steps toward healthy eating), PRO series (meant for those with an active lifestyle) and their most powerful unit – the Rx.
If you are a fan of caviar and/or smoked salmon, immediately call Petrossian, a fantastic restaurant which has an amazing gift box department! Featuring an array of delicacies to please your foodie pallete, their variety of elegant wooden gift boxes come with your choice of caviar, smoked salmon, champagne, Beluga Vodka, mother of pearl spoons, and blinis. Five categories of caviar are sold at the West Hollywood location, which recently introduced a monthly five course menu with delicious seasonal ingredients. And if you are lucky enough to be in New York, LA and the original location, Paris, stop by the restaurant for a once in a lifetime experience.
Winestyr, a craft-wine marketplace, features small-batch wineries from the US. These are real wines made by genuine people, not the mass-produced brands that overwhelm store shelves. They’ve personally met all of the producers, and tasted hundreds of wines; the online marketplace is a collection of our favorites, available for sale to customers across the United States. There’s also a subscription box option that was just highly reviewed in Business Insider.
While many wine companies target women, Winestyr appeals to men with the straightforward descriptions and classy yet masculine packaging. Each gift purchase includes a personalized card. Gifts can be purchased and delivered in advance of the holidays for those who won’t be able to celebrate in person, a gift card can be purchased in any amount, or subscriptions can be gifted. The website’s gift finder makes picking the right wine easy–and affordable. Bottles start at $11, the monthly subscription ranges from $75-$179/ month. Subscriptions can be canceled at any time, and include free shipping on all other bottles throughout the month. The company also does a significant number of corporate gifts as well–which also include personalization.
ChocAmo is a specialty dessert company that has created the ultimate delectable experience: the cookie cup. The trade secret recipe allows the cups to hold any type of filling. They pair perfectly with milk, espresso, ice cream and liquor. ChocAmo’s product selection includes a variety of different flavored Cookie Cups, 14 to be exact. The most popular flavors are: the Chocolate Chipster, Peanut Butter Delight, Raspberry Oatmeal, Pumpkin Spice, Gingerbread House, Smoldering S’mores, Peppermint Bark, Thai Iced Tea and Red Velvet.
Anchor Toffee’s signature Almond Butter Toffee is hand crafted in small batches with the best ingredients. Almonds, sweet cream butter, pure sugar, salt and dark chocolate are skillfully piloted through heat and cold to create a classic treat you cant resist. We use no preservatives or emulsifiers which make the Toffee vulnerable to heat and humidity. The balance of sweet and salty is a true New England treasure, so devour your loot right away or store it int he fridge under an “X” to keep it safe from hungry pirates, or relatives.
Nielsen-Massey Vanillas Pure Peppermint Extract: $10.99
Peppermint extract, with its candy canes, ice creams and cookies, has long been a favorite of the holiday season, but its culinary uses don’t have to end with the return of spring. Crafted from the finest mint oils, Pure Peppermint Extract from Nielsen-Massey Vanillas is perfect for flavoring teas and complementing chocolate in cakes, icings and ice cream. Available in 2 and 4 ounce jars.
Indian As Apple Pie Simmering Sauces: $29.95 for 3 jars
Indian As Apple Pie’s new line of Simmering Sauces opens a world of “secret recipes” that many Indian families keep on hand for a variety of occasions. Punjabi Masala is an excellent starter for virtually any North Indian curry, and is used by most Punjabi families for quick and easy meals during the week. Tamarind Curry is inspired by the Malabar Coast and is comprised of black mustard seeds, tart tamarind and fragrant curry leaves for a flavorful sauce. Tikka Masala finds its roots in Punjabi cuisine, balancing the tartness of tomatoes with the subtlety of spices; this sauce is made heartier with almonds – not dairy – and is a perfect backdrop to any main ingredient, be it meat or vegetables.
Mrs. Prindable’s Noble Nutcracker Petite Caramel Apple Gift Set: $39
Who doesn’t love caramel and chocolate?! These Nutcracker characters come filled with two Milk Chocolate Walnut Petite Apples and two Triple Chocolate Petite Apples. Crisp, juicy apples are dipped in buttery caramel and then layered with White, Milk and Dark Chocolate or drenched in Milk Chocolate and rolled in walnuts.
PARTNERS Brownie Thins: $.99-$5.29
Filled with rich dark chocolate flavor, these delicious, gluten-free crisps are the perfect sweet accompaniment to a meal, snack, or coffee break. All of PARTNERS® Free for All Kitchen products are made with cassava flour and a blend of five ancient grains, and this GMO-Free product does not contain corn, soy or rice. Brownie Thins are available in 1 or 4-ounce packages.
The perfect gift for a food, wine and football lover is a seat at the table for The 2nd Annual Culinary Kickoff– billed as the biggest foodie Super Bowl ever! Three days prior to the 50th anniversary of the Super Bowl, celebrity chefs Michael Mina, Charlie Palmer, Todd English and David Burke will cook a four-course meal for 80 privileged people. Prior to dinner, guests will sample wine from athlete vintners and after dinner be treated by a surprise musical performance. Tickets are $10K/each and the proceeds benefit the Culinary Institute of the Arts Scholarship fund, allowing aspiring chefs without the means to attend the school and pursue their dreams.
Besides their savvy cocktail consulting business, Hudson Valley’s Red & Brown have created tasty products as well. For their cocktail nuts, R&B took their inspiration from classic 1960s bar mixes to create an interesting snacking combination of sweet and heat. The roasted walnuts are mixed with organic New York State maple syrup and spices, making them a addictive complement to your drink. Any occasion becomes a party when you put a bowl of these out. (4 ounce bag)
In addition, R&B’s Bloody Mary mixer is a blend of spices and umami for brunch with friends and lazy weekends. For best results, mix 2 oz of your spirit of choice with 4oz of the Mixer, adjust to taste, and garnish with wild abandon. (32 ounce jar) R&B’s maple syrup is made with organic Grade A Very Dark Maple Syrup from Northern New York and smoked slowly over a proprietary blend of woods, It’s a great as a substitute for the sugar cube in your Old Fashioned, an add-in for a smoky margarita, or plain ol’ pancakes.
With the holiday season just around the corner, Cozymeal is the perfect place to find unique experiences for the food lover on your list. Cozymeal personally connects foodies and cooking enthusiasts alike with local professional chefs, taking guests on a culinary adventure by offering high-end experiential dining ranging from cooking classes to farmers’ market tours and private dining events.
From chefs who’ve worked at Michelin starred restaurants to vegan, health conscious cooks and sushi masters alike, Cozymeal offers a wide variety of unique experiences that are ideal for a truly unique gift. Cozymeal is quickly expanding and is currently available in Los Angeles and San Francisco, heading to New York next.
If you’re searching for the perfect gift, Skinnygirl® Cocktails has everything you need to get in the holiday spirit. These delish, low-cal options make a great hostess gift or present for the foodie in your life!
• Skinnygirl Pinot Noir contains flavors of dark cherry, toasted oak and vanilla, and at less than 100 calories per serving, makes a guilt-free gift for any wine lover
• Skinnygirl Pinot Grigio offers rich aromas of tropical fruit balanced with a hint of natural grape sweetness, making it the perfect complement to holiday meals
• Skinnygirl Bare Naked Vodka is a great base spirit for mixing up tasty, guiltless cocktails
For the Pet
Don’t forget your best canine or feline friend in your holiday gift guide. Last year, over $50 BILLION was spent on gifts for pets.
Drool-worthy options ranging from $10 to $75 include:
– Antler Chews for Rein-dogs. All natural Elk Antlers hand collected from the wild. Great for teething pups or dogs that just love to chew. Sizes, shapes and cuts vary.
$7 – $70, www.Barkworthies.com
– Extrava-cat Scratchers Double as Holiday Decor. Seasonal designs like stand-up holiday trees, reindeer and more come with certified organic catnip to entice kitty.
$10 – $75, www.ImperialCat.com
– Holiday Fleeces for Cheerful Pups. Bright, on-trend plaid fleeces for dogs made with 7-way stretch fabric that range to fit Chihuahua puppies to Labradors.
$20 – $36, www.GoldPawSeries.com
– Interactive Feeders for Endless Festivities. Mentally and physically challenging feeders turn mealtime into game time — ideal for hyperactive or overweight pups. Styles, sizes and difficulty levels range. I love the GREEN Slow Dog Feeder, a highly dynamic way to turn a dog’s meal into a challenging time-consuming game. Slowing down a dog’s eating helps reduce the risk of bloat and the unpleasant after-effects of eating too fast.
$12 – $50, www.CompanyofAnimals.us.
Caru’s Natural Stews for Dogs
• Made from only FDA verified human grade ingredients that are processed and handled in accordance with FDA regulations for human food
• Real meat or poultry is the first ingredients (no ingredients from China)
• No artificial colors, flavors or preservatives
• Does not contain any grain, wheat, gluten, corn, soy, or animal by-products
• Looks, smells and tastes like it’s homemade
Style: The Croc Double Feeder
Blurb: This croc embossed feeder is a sturdy and stylish option for meal time that will keep your kitchen looking polished. Outfitted with sleek stainless steel, the dishwasher-safe bowls also feature rubber non-skid feet on the bottom to protect your floors, prevent clacking noises, and stop dogs from scooting them around. The innovative design will impress even the most pampered pets and their owners.
The History Project is a digital storytelling platform that allows users to compile memories into a virtual timeline using multiple mediums. Photo albums will no longer collect dust on shelves or in boxes, they are now able to be part of a digital time capsule that includes video and audio features that allow your memories truly come to life. With The History Project, you can gift a concierge service to offer personalized support to anyone who is too busy to create a project or unfamiliar with different technology tools.
This holiday season, give the Gift of Go so recipients can see cool sights, take a wild ride, or get up close and personal with the things that make them say “wow.” The Go City Card is a multi-attraction pass available for 11 of America’s most popular destinations. It is perfect for the person who has never taken the time to go sightseeing in their own city or for someone who is traveling to one of our 11 cities and wants to see and experience as much as possible.
The Gift of Go is available for Boston, Chicago, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Miami, New York City, Oahu, Orlando, San Diego, San Francisco, and Washington, DC.
iUDAME is a new mobile app available for iOS and Android devices that allows users to alert a selected group of contacts and local authorities when one is in an emergency situation.
Inspiration for the app came after published neuroscientist Michael Nelson lost his sister in 2010 to a severe heart attack when she was just 32 years old. This app is the first of its kind to notify local authorities and personal contacts, and is essential in today’s day and age where society is glued to their phones.
Kelli May Krenz has darling coloring books and they would be a super hip stocking stuffer or hostess gift with a set of colored pencils. Unlike the laser drawn books you see at Barnes & Noble, Kelli made every picture and they are delightful. She is a noted illustrator and card designer and this coloring book premiered at the NYC Stationary Show last spring where Kelli was up for Best Of. www.kellimaykrenz.com
Color Me Calm and Color Me Happy…Colorama is the new adult coloring book that helps you relax and unwind while on the road. It offers over 100 exquisite designs printed on one-sided acid-free paper. Price $12.95 https://www.coloramabooks.com
Mistletoe and Touch: Don’t stress about germs while traveling! Touch is the world’s first aerosol-based sanitizing germ blocker. Designed to be applied prior to leaving the house and throughout the day touch is an alcohol free, aerosol-based sanitizing germ blocker that provides up to six hours of germ protection per application, is safe for all ages and uses certified organic natural oils. Price $5.99
Let It Nano, Let It Nano, Let It NanoHold: with NanoHold your beautiful travel photos don’t have to stay immobile forever! NanoHold takes hands free to a new level with its adhesive that sticks to your phone and holds to any smooth flat surfaces. Which allows you to take selfies and capture videos for your travel diary. NanoHold is the only of its kind to come with a cover to protect against dirt and preserve the sticky. (www.nanohold.com) Price: $8.99
Author and filmmaker Leslie Zemeckis (wife of director Robert Zemeckis) recently launched her highly anticipated biography of Lili St. Cyr titled, Goddess of Love Incarnate: The Life of Stripteuse Lili St. Cyr, a mesmerizing biography of history’s most famous stripteaser (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XAuDz18gR64).
Zemeckis spent over five years extensively researching St. Cyr’s extraordinary life which included torrid romances and six marriages. St. Cyr brought elegance to the burlesque stage, mesmerizing audiences with her sensual dancing, role-playing and signature onstage bubble bath.
Goddess of Love Incarnate: The Life of Stripteuse Lili St. Cyr is packed with hundreds of stunning and original photographs, many from St. Cyr’s personal collection. Zemeckis brings St. Cyr back to life with her provocative and powerful prose, restoring the burlesque star to her rightful place in the spotlight, but more importantly, into the heart of American history.
For the GrandChild
Today’s new parents are seeking the best for their children and they are spending time researching products looking for natural and environmentally friendly toys, as well as toys that engage, and aid in child development. The Meiya & Alvin Collection was designed to promote infant development while combining natural, sustainable materials and recycled packaging. This toy for the first time in toy making history combines soft textile and natural rubber to meet the growing consumer market seeking natural and sustainable products. Celebrity moms such as Alicia Silverstone have expressed interest!
A great headwear brand to check out is called Elm Company, which have a lovely assortment of beanie hats. They are also launching a kids collection called Saplings shortly. If you and your grandchild love to ski, check out their Claw Hood, which can be worn alone or under your favorite jacket’s hood. The nylon outer shell and visor keep snow and wetness out, while the inner fleece lining and forehead/chin panels keep you warm. Other hats are all under $35!
This is luxury floor pillow that makes an awesome gift. New parents may not be aware that they even need a floor pillow when they have their first kids, but an experienced parent knows that these are life savers for fun, safe for playtime and tummy time experiences from infancy to childhood.
Kolibree Toothbrush’s flagship feature is the Go Pirate game that rewards children for brushing correctly and helps them learn to brush better. The game is on both the iOS and Android versions of the app. (only smart tootbrush with gaming for Android). the gentle brush heads is really good for removing plaque without harsh “scrubbing.” The Kolibree toothbrush weighs only 2.5 ounces so it’s the lightest electric toothbrush on the market, and the wide handle is easy to grip for people with arthritis as other types of “grip” problems.
Available at Target are beautifully illustrated story books featuring rhyming verse and augmented reality technology from Disney Imagicademy and Mercury Connects. The new books deliver a “connected storytelling” experience that maintain the familiar connection of physical books combined with the magic of augmented reality, appealing to today’s tech savvy child. SUGGESTED AGE: 3 years and up.
Titles include: Olaf Wants a Birthday, featuring Olaf, the lovable snowman from Disney’s Frozen movies and Mickey and Donald’s Rhyme Time, starring characters from Disney’s Mickey Mouse Clubhouse franchise.
Smartwatches are functional, fun and engaging, but the watchbands currently available are not fashion friendly – until now! XISTWEAR is launching its new exclusive watchbands that fuse tech and fashion brilliantly, for both men and women. The watchbands add fashion to your smartwatch, are very comfortable and available in a variety of colors and sizes. The company also offers coordinating XISTWEAR™ bracelets.
For the Musician
1. BeatBuddy Mini — For guitar players who love to jam, but don’t have a drummer handy, this little pedal gives them complete control over a live beat. ($149) Shipping for the holidays. More here: http://mybeatbuddy.com/product/beatbuddy-mini
2. SmarTVoke — For the family, this cool digital mixer and dual wireless microphone set turns any Smart TV into a karaoke machine using the latest karaoke apps out there. ($199) More here: http://www.investorideas.com/news/2015/technology/08101.asp
3. JamHub Tracker MT16 — For musicians who want to record on the go, the Tracker MT16 is a 16-track recording studio that fits in the palm of your hand. And now wirelessly uploads your music tracks to Dropbox for mixing down later. ($399) More here: http://jamhub.com/tracker-mt16/