December Trend Teaser: Holiday Gifting Edition!

Season’s Greetings!

So…how was your year?? If it was anything like mine, there were highs, lows and some in-betweens. I learned and grew as a human, parent, and a professional—which is what I hope for each year. Check!

To end the year with a spirit of joy and a dose of capitalism (a marketer’s dream), this month I’ll feature my picks for Intriguing Holiday Gifts.

I want to keep it light, so will resists the temptation to try to find deep meaning in our obsession with gifting…but I do have to wonder why we humans feel the need to express ourselves with material goods year after year, when we all know we have too much stuff, and that stuff does not equal caring or happiness?

I’ve long thought those nutty Millennials that prefer “Experiences” are onto something. I’d personally rather receive great seats to a hot new musical, an afternoon at a super Zen spa with delicious tea, or a 36-hour weekend away pretty much anywhere that isn’t my house over another sweater, necklace, or winter hat & gloves set. But that’s a topic for a different edition…. look out, January!  No, I will not be Scroogie, I will instead succumb to the Present-palooza that is the month of December in the US of A.

As you’ll see, I’ve switched it up from my usual categories (I live on the edge) to reflect my finely tuned, proprietary Strategic Gifting Sensibilities.™ They are:

  1. Simple but Brilliant
  2. Shamelessly Superfluous
  3. Embarrassed to Admit it, but I Really Want One

OK. Here go the examples.

Simple but Brilliant

Vochill Stemless Wine Chiller – $44.95

For those that enjoy our vino, this Stemless Wine Chiller is self-explanatory and SO necessary. Call me high maintenance, but I can only enjoy white wine super cold. This removes the risk of social shaming I take every time I plop an ice cube into my glass. Pricey for what it is, but quite possibly worth it.


This clip on bedside tray –excuse me, this BedShelfie--was apparently designed for dorm rooms, bunkbeds, loft beds, etc. While I do not fit any of those specs, I’m all over this thing. My nightstand is perpetually cluttered, and as my favorite at home work location is sitting up in bed (see husband pillow – a solid gift), there’s always a decent chance of spilling a beverage, getting snacks in my bed, or dropping some small object under my bed never to be seen again. My life will never be the same.

Middle Finger Candles – $10-30 (various sites)

I hope we can all agree this requires no explanation. So many usage occasions, I don’t know where to start. I love that there’s a platinum version for all those times you want to flip someone off in a tastefully elegant way.

Shamelessly Superfluous

Teak and Twine Mindful Wellness Corporate Gift Set – $82

To be fair, I love a cute notebook or scented candle as much as the next gal, but this ‘Mindful Wellness Corporate Gift Set, composed of a journal, candle with snuffer (best not set fire to one’s office), tea sachets and air plant (what is that?!) immediately set off my “Really?” radar, and not just because it’s $80+ for bundling stuff that would cost half that amount if bought separately—a $40 curation fee?! The collection of “thoughtful touches to help anyone stay present and mindful throughout the day” seems tone deaf – wouldn’t your colleague be slightly offended by this clear hint that you need to chillax?

Orastone Rechargeable Hand Warmer – $25-35

This Rechargeable Hand Warmer is just silly. It’s no longer peak Covid, so nobody is forcing you to stay outside! If your hands are cold, it may be time to go inside. Or to get a warmer pair of gloves. And you’re supposed to be wearing it around your wrist—which could be very clunky under your gloves or jacket. And if you use up the battery skiing, snowshoeing or otherwise frolicking in the cold, where/when/how ya gonna recharge? Yes, a problem to solve, and I’ll give them credit for fun design options, but way gimmicky. Give me my compact $2 manual hand warmers that actually last a while.

This canine-crafted speaker by a brand called Pet Acoustics plays calming, frequency-modified music that’s “clinically proven and veterinarian-approved” to reduce stress and anxiety. It’s touted as ideal for situations like travel, grooming, or thunderstorms.

OK. I love my dog. Very, very much, as evidenced by an example in the next section. And loyal readers might recall my recent edition about Sleep Wellness—I know sleep is a fundamental need with which many humans are challenged (my dog has never told me he had trouble sleeping last night, not sure why.) But I have a hard time that the clinically proven magic frequencies this gadget emits is what calms the pup, rather than the music or soundscape itself. I recently heard about this crazy new thing called Spotify? You know, the green icon? I say try out some different genres or white noise to see what brings the doggie zen, then play it on repeat.

Don’t want to Admit it, but I Really Want One

Southlake Cereal Candles – $36.99

I must say, candlemakers are sure strutting their creativity this season! I am a sucker for everything about the cereals of my youth–the aromas, the deliciousness, the TV ads, and of course the memories. So, I ask you, why NOT turn a bowl of Lucky Charms, Fruity Pebbles or Fruit Loops into a centerpiece or colorful, fragrant bath accessory? The Southlake brand got the memo that Nostalgia Sells. Smart move.

Cat and Dog Custom Portrait Necklaces – $25-35 (various sites)

I will be honest that my first instinct with these pet pendants one was to include it in the Shamelessly Superfluous category. The manufacturers seem to agree, as the website actually said “this has grandma all over it.” But then, I paused, and dug deeper into my maternal soul. Was I turned off because I never had these pendants for my real children, but always admired when others wore them—latent jealousy perhaps? But quite self-aware and upfront about my pup Hudson’s role as my third child, that gives much better snuggles. So why not keep him with me all the time?

Potted Cactus Measuring Spoons Set – $40 – Amazon

I simply love this Potted Cactus Measuring Spoons set. First, because as my husband and hiking buddies know, I am obsessed with Cacti. I have more cactus pictures on my phone than some close family members. But, I also love this one because it actually solves a problem! When measuring spoons are all attached, they’re a pain to clean, right ?! When plowing through a recipe, I want easy access to each so I can do a quick rinse and reuse. Now they all stand up in their own little slots! Adorbs.

The Wrap Up (get it?)

I’ll conclude this list of quirky gifts with a true gem of a “What The…”

The All Seeing Lemon – $44.99

Apparently, this non-edible, more than slightly creepy squishy is a bestseller on etsy with no functional utility whatsoever. Except that it rolls. CAUTION: do not try to slice up this seeing-eye citrus for your G&T.

Available in 4 eye colors –but only 2 are deemed realistic– (?!?!$#@%) If this bizarre little guy entertains you more than it freaks you out, knock yourself out! Also available in lime, of course.

What Do You Think? Share an example of a wacky, unnecessary, or adorable gift you’ve seen this season!

Happy Everything, See you in 2024!

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