Holiday gift guide: the comforts of home

Holiday Gift Guide: Susan B's gift ideas for home. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

Aaaand….here we are, November already. 👀 Blink twice, and the holidays will be upon us. If you’re already thinking about your holiday gift list, you’re not alone. That’s smart, as demand for delivery services will be high this year, and shipping times may be longer.

With many of us spending more time at home, I thought I’d focus first on those gifts that will be useful à la maison. More than ever, I look for gifts that are functional and practical, as well as fun.

Wine o’clock

1 – Oh Coravin, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways….Enjoy just a glass of your best wines (or even just an ounce or two for tastings) while preserving the rest of the bottle. It’s easy to use and small enough to tuck away in a drawer.

2. I purchased these iitala wine glasses earlier this year, and really like them! The shape allows full expression of the wine, and they’re not too delicate for everyday use. (The white wine glass works for both white and sparkling wines.)

Keep it fresh

3 – I’ve been making a concerted effort to eliminate our use of single-use plastics. Beeswax food wraps like these work brilliantly! They keep food from drying out, have natural anti-bacterial properties, and can be used over and over. (Just wash in cool soapy water). You could also include in a gift basket with some of these reusable silicone food storage containers.

4 – I often tuck in a set or two of fresh, colorful dishtowels when I’m putting together a kitchen-themed gift basket. They’ve always been appreciated!

Brew it up

5 – An electric kettle boils water in a jiffy. This one is so retro-cool!

6 – Be an at-home Barista. I ❤️❤️❤️ my Nespresso machine. It makes a perfect espresso every time. And with the Aeroccino milk frother, you can have hot, foamy milk for a cappuccino or latte with just the push of a button.

Family game night

7 – Backgammon anyone? Or maybe some dominos?

8 – Game night should include some hot chocolate, don’t you think? (Adults can add a little Peppermint Schnapps…😉 )

Home grown

9 – Enjoy fresh herbs, even in the winter with this self-watering indoor garden. This could be a fun gift for kids, too!

Don’t forget Fido

10 – Keep pets smelling fresh with this mild wash that’s gentle enough for sensitive skin.

11 – I love a cute dog bowl. This one’s dishwasher safe.

12 – Our dogs have all loved this dog bed. And I love it because it’s so easy to keep clean. The cover is easy to remove, and both cover and filler can be washed and dried in the machine.

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12 Comments

  1. NCRJ
    November 2, 2020 / 4:05 am

    Would also consider Swedish dishcloths which replace paper towels. tenandco.ca is a small Canadian company that does beeswax and dish towels too. Cloth napkins, reusable vegetable bags so that you use less plastic bags at the grocery store….

  2. Barbara Thompson
    November 2, 2020 / 5:59 am

    It’s great that you are advocating for and using less single use plastic bags. But what about the plastic cap Nespresso capsules?

    • Susan Blakey
      Author
      November 2, 2020 / 6:04 am

      Hi Barbara, they aren’t plastic; they’re aluminum. And Nespresso has a robust recycling program. They provide free recycling bags with a UPS shipping label. You can read more about it here: https://www.nespresso.com/us/en/sustainability#recycled

      • Marta
        November 2, 2020 / 7:50 am

        I love everything about my Nespresso system! Easy to use, delicious coffee and foamed milk, and especially their recycling program. WIN WIN!

      • Barbara
        November 2, 2020 / 9:31 pm

        I stand corrected!

  3. Jill Ann
    November 2, 2020 / 7:25 am

    I’ve been using those beeswax wraps and am very pleased with them. Even my skeptical husband concedes that they work well. I also got a similar indoor herb garden for my daughter last Christmas. She grew quite a lot of herbs with it. The downside was that you had to reorder seed pods from the company. She told me there was info on the internet explaining a do-it-yourself method. Don’t know if she’s tried that yet

  4. Eva Gayle Cox
    November 2, 2020 / 10:30 am

    Those are wonderful ideas for gifts. I suggested to our friends & family instead of getting gifts for each other, we’ll give to our favorite charity. I’m giving to “All About Cats” my local veterinarian that not only takes care of his patients but also the kittens that are left on their door step. They find them homes after making sure the kittens are in tip top shape (they are are a no kill veterinarian).

  5. Pat
    November 2, 2020 / 11:37 am

    This is definitely the year for useful and practical gifts! I like these choices and would like to suggest a few things I might give (and would love to receive) for the holidays:

    Luxurious, gentle high-end liquid soap–I can’t believe how much liquid soap we go through in a month these days. If the soap had a matching hand cream and came in a pretty sink caddy, I’d consider that an excellent gift and maybe even throw in a hand sanitizer and a couple of hand towels. (We have a local distillery now producing hand sanitizer and it comes in fun liquor themed bottles.)

    Easily washable winter gloves, because we now have to wash them frequently.

    Gift cards for stay-at-home activities–bookstore cards, Netflix, food delivery services.

    Heated throw

  6. Alice
    November 2, 2020 / 12:44 pm

    Susan,
    I’d love to get a coffee maker like your but are the pods recyclable?
    Thanks.

    • Susan Blakey
      Author
      November 2, 2020 / 12:55 pm

      Yes, they are! And it’s really easy too with the free recycling bags with pre-paid UPS labels.

  7. Diana
    November 2, 2020 / 1:24 pm

    The dog soap link isn’t working; will you try again to link it please? Thanks.

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