Doing Good: Gifts that Give Back

If you’re anything like me, you’re still knee-deep in holiday shopping. I have a small pile of random items that haven’t been wrapped yet, but beyond that, I still have a lot of work to do. I just don’t feel like shopping this year- wait let me rephrase that- I don’t feel like going to the mall down here. The closest mall to me is HUGE and awesome, but also super crowded and not so much fun when you have a list to get through. It’s perfect for wandering around, but the idea of going there for Christmas shopping gives me hives.
So with that in mind, I turn to online shopping. And what better way to online shop than by working with companies with positive missions! It makes me feel a little bit better about the money I’m spending. Here are some of my favorite last minute (but still thoughtful) gift ideas:
fashionable- a company working to offer skills and jobs to women overcoming a life challenge

For your BFF through thick and thin
The last time we talked about FashionAble they only had scarves. Today they have beautiful, buttery leather goods and jewelry to match! They’ve also expanded the women they work with across the globe, offering skills to women overcoming particularly difficult life challenges including addiction, trafficking, and a lack of opportunity.  My favorite item is the bucket bag and I’m going to go out on a limb and say your best friend needs one.
*Order by 12/18 to receive before Christmas

serengetee- supporting artisans and causes around the world

For your sister (or brother) on the move
We all want to travel the world, Serengetee lets you keep that goal in mind at all times while supporting global artisans and causes. Pick a city or print that you think will resonate the most with your sibling and get them a great baseball tee, or makeup case, or headband, or v-neck, or sweatshirt, or backpack or a hat….

*Order today 12/15 for a Christmas delivery
**30% off your order using the code LASTCALL

bombas- a buy one give one company

For your brother (or sister) with stinky shoes
Listen- we’re not all perfect- but you can help your favorite sibling get a little closer with a new pair of socks from Bombas – a company that donates a pair of socks for every pair sold.
*Buy today 12/15 for standard shipping by Christmas Eve!

 

the good trade- portion of proceeds donated to child victims of sex slavery

For your mom that’s always on trend
My mom taught me the value in simple jewelry. It matches everything, can be dressed up or down, and never goes out of style. I love these options from The Good Trade and a portion of all proceeds is donated to child victims of sex slavery.

Three Blend Starter Kit

For your caffeine drinking, dog loving dad
Is my dad the only dad that mentions something once and then goes to buy it for himself? My mom is the queen at leaving hints for gifts, but my dad? No way. If he wants something, he buys it. So I’ll just supply a socially aware morning coffee instead. Grounds and Hounds Coffee Co. sells 100% fair trade coffee and donates 20% of all proceeds to dog rescue organizations around the states.

parker clay- made in Ethiopia

For your favorite weekend getaway partner
When Dean and I go away I have a few different bags to choose from and Dean has exactly two: his gym bag or an old backpack. Give your guy an upgrade with a beautiful leather weekend bag offering community support in Ethiopia from Parker Clay.

 

PS- Find other great options here

Building a Gift Closet

keep an eye out for good sales and keep extra gifts on hand for emergencies

Confession: I spend way too much money on gifts. Finding great gifts and making people feel good is one of my favorite things to do, but it’s just not always financially practical. So I started a gift closet! Okay, it’s not a full closet, but it is a space where I put all the cute stuff that I randomly find and buy when I’m  not supposed to be shopping for myself. It makes me feel better about my casual shopping habits and it’s made me a more productive human being– so it’s totally a win-win!

Basically when I’m rummaging through Marshalls/Homegoods/Target/Anywhere-I’m-Not-Supposed-To-Be, I use this as a great excuse to buy all of the cute things that I just can’t walk away from. I typically keep my purchases pretty general, but every so often I see things that I just have to buy for someone specific.  Sometimes you just need to give a little gift, you know? Bewteen holidays, birthdays, dinner parties, new homes, engagements, and “miss you’s” a good gift never goes to waste. Dean thinks it’s silly, but he never complains when we get invited somewhere and I have a gift ready in under 2 seconds.

Since I feel like I’m always looking for ideas like this, maybe  you are too. Here are a few of my favorite little gifts to have on hand:

  • Stationary
  • Frames
  • Tea Towels
  • Cards
  • Jewelry
  • Soaps/Lotions
  • Books
  • Candles
  • Ring Holders/Jewelry Bowls

 

The possibilities are endless! Does anyone else do this or am I the only one looking for extra ways to spend my money?

 

PS- Give a homemade body scrub!

PPS-The perfect gift basket for your friend who just bought a home.

 

 

Original photo via

2014 Gift Guide: Home Goods

gift guide 2014- home goods
So apparently it’s time for some gift guides. Well game on! I always have my eyes peeled for fun little gifts and gadgets, and places that carry home-goods are always my first stop. Books, throw pillows, stationary, they are all so great for anyone on your list! (Plus I selfishly love going through these things for myself.) In my mind, I can buy specialized home-goods for friends, but I can also hold onto some cute mugs and cards for neighbors or teachers, too! They’re the gifts I can’t get enough of, so I thought this might be a good place to start this year. What kind of gifts do you enjoy buying most?

 

Looking for something else? How about a free scarf?

Valentine’s Day Extras

valentine's day

pillow, bear print, plate, mug,
gold print (“my heart is yours”), ice tray

After last week’s post I happily continued on my valentine’s day gift search. I have to admit that I’m not a giant Valentine’s Day girl, but I am a huge candy lover.  So I think it’s safe to say I’m totally okay with the holiday. While I may not be looking to fill my whole house with pink and red, I love to add a few extra sentiments of love where I can. These little extras add just the right amount of “oomph”.  Now it’s your turn: Are you a Valentine’s Day type of person?

Valentine’s Day Gifts

I like the idea of getting & giving something small and cutesy for Valentine’s Day, but at the same time I don’t want to get something so cutesy that it will never get used. Dean, if you’re listening, something like this will do.

valentine's day gifts by handmade artisans

xo rings  /   love jewelry dish  /  rose body products 
custom stamp  /  heart measuring spoons

Each of these items is something I could see using year round. And bonus- they’re all created by handmade artisans! Once again, a gift with a social responsible kick!

What’s your idea of a good Valentine’s Day gift?