Tag Archives: food

A Gift for New Neighbors

We have two new neighbors, and nothing breaks the ice like a simple gift. My favorite welcome present is a 1.7-ounce jar of Fox Point Seasoning from Penzeys Spices. Moving to a new home often means purging — sometimes clearing out the spice rack — so fresh spices make a welcome gift. This Penzeys jar costs $8 so your neighbor won’t feel beholden.

A flavorful mix of salt, chives, peppercorns, scallions and shallots, Fox Point Seasoning adds zest to chicken, fish, salads and steamed vegetables. I can no longer imagine scrambled eggs without it.

Simply tie a ribbon just under the lid and attach a welcome card with your names signed legibly. Walk over to your new neighbor, introduce yourself and give a neighborly present.

Tap foursquare for Gift Ideas

Are you among the nine million users of foursquare, the leading check-into-places smartphone app? If yes, try using foursquare to find gift hints from your friends check-ins and tips. Launch foursquare, tap the friends icon, then the friend’s name. Notice that foursquare now shows the five most explored categories and top five check-in locations for your friends. These categories and locations can serve as hints for gift ideas.

Start by tapping Mayorships. See where your friend reigns as mayor — the places that she checked in more days than anyone else on foursquare. If your friend is the mayor of the local Trader Joe’s, consider building a Trader Joe’s gift bag.

Next, check out the Most Explored Categories over the last six months. Tap each category, like Coffee Shops, to see the locations. Does he check into five different Starbucks? Load up a Starbucks card as a gift. How about a gift certificate to the Stir Crazy Asian Grill she frequents every month?

Scroll down to see the Top Places your friend has checked in. Maybe she has shopped at Urban Outfitters five times since January. Now you know she’ll appreciate a UO gift card.

Finally, look through your friends’ foursquare Tips and To-Dos. From a tip, I see one of my friends loves yogurt-covered banana chips from the local natural food co-op. Another friend has a to-do item to visit Penzeys Spices.

Use foursquare to turn your friends’ whereabouts and tips into favorite gifts.

Related Post: Gifts for foursquare Fans

Oprah’s Favorite Things

Oprah Winfrey loves to give. She graciously signed off today after 25 years of daytime television and nearly a decade of her audience-swooning Favorite Things. The blog Jezebel estimates Oprah gave $23,809,050 worth of products since 2002. Not every gift stood the test of time — like Dell’s Pocket DJ MP3 player and J.Lo’s velour sweatsuit — but most have. Let Oprah be your guide for your next gift.


Beauty and Body Care


Books and Magazines

Charitable Gifts

Clothing and Accessories


Food Favorites


Home and Office Furnishings


Kitchen and Appliances

Movies and Television



A Last-minute Mother’s Day Gift

Looking for a last-minute Mother’s Day gift, and you can’t give it in person? Yeah, me too. I want either a Sunday home delivery or an email notification of a meaningful gift to Mom.

Last week, I tried ordering a pressed flower pendant necklace from Uncommon Goods. The flower jewelry I wanted was out of stock. I gave Edible Arrangements a shot, but the shops near me only have Monday delivery dates for their fruit bouquets. Flowers are a classic Mother’s Day gift, but I sent Mom a dozen irises in a vase for her birthday last month.

Amazon offers online gift cards with three Mother’s Day Designs: butterflies, crown and flowers. But I want something more specific and personal than a gift card to “The Earth’s Biggest Selection.”

Next, I found a fashion tee website with a conscience called Project Iris. A portion of each purchase supports World Food Program USA, providing meals to mothers and children in developing countries. Great tees and a great cause that my mom supports — it sounds perfect. The problem: Project Iris online gift certificates take one to two business days to deliver. Not soon enough. I’ll note this one for a future present in Mom’s gift dossier.

In the end, I chose to give to the Meals for Moms campaign, a part of the Meals on Wheels charity. My mom volunteers at a local food bank. So I know she will appreciate a gift to a hunger relief charity that provides meals for home-bound mothers and grandmothers. I sent a Meals on Wheels e-card letting her know the gift will feed a dozen moms for a week.

Happy Mother’s Day!

12 “Of the Month” Gifts

Clark Griswold expected a four-figure Christmas bonus. Instead, he got a membership in the Jelly of the Month Club [YouTube video].

While National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation pokes fun at “of the month” clubs, I think Cousin Eddie had it right: “That’s the gift that keeps on giving throughout the entire year.”

Consider giving from these 12 “of the month” clubs.

Omaha Steaks Gourmet Entree of the Month
Give 12 months of mouth-watering meat, from top sirloins in January to prime rib in December.
Jigsaw Java Puzzle of the Month
Choose how many puzzle pieces and how many months (six or 12 months) for a puzzle fan.
ProFlowers Flowers of the Month Club
Send fresh, seasonal flowers to your love every month with ProFlowers.
The Microbrewed Beer of the Month Club
Surprise the beer lover on your gift list with 12 months of 12-pack microbrews.
Stone Creek Coffee of the Month
My favorite coffee addiction, sent in two-pound monthly doses for a year.
12 Months of Netflix
Give a 12-month gift subscription to more than 100,000 movies and TV shows.
Threadless 12 Club
Cool in cotton form. Your giftee receives a dozen creative t-shirts, voted on by the online public.
Tie of the Month Club
The Tie Bar will deliver a dozen ties to your guy over the next year. Choose from traditional, trendy or “trenditional.”
Giftlit Monthly Books
Give 12 month’s worth of the best books for children, teens, men and women as selected by librarians, educators, authors and literary editors.
Popping Through the Months Club
Send a different flavor of popcorn — like chocolate drizzle caramel corn — each month.
Fishing Lure of the Month
Thrill your fishing enthusiast with 12 months of freshwater or saltwater lures.
Forbidden Foods Club
No one can handle a whole year of Zingerman’s forbidden foods. Select three months or six months of dangerous gluttony.