Things I love (to give, and to get)!

Wow. What a year it's been!  Just two weeks to go until we say goodbye to 2016 and kick off the New Year. I will be celebrating the holidays at home in NY, spending just about every day between Christmas and New Years with family and friends, filled with so many of our own long-time traditions. Of course, one tradition for many of our get-togethers is exchanging gifts! If you're like me, you've been spending the last few weeks (or days) virtually shopping, searching for that perfect something for everyone on your list. I thought it would be fun (and hopefully useful) to make a list of some of my go-to items, in case you're stuck on what to buy for that special someone!

If you're looking for kitchen gadgets, healthy skin care, books, or yummy food items, I've got you covered. Here are my top five (ok, six) favorite things that I think would make awesome gifts, in no particular order:

1)  The Paderno World Cuisine Spiral Slicer.  I received this as a gift from my step-sister a year or two ago, and I honestly don't know how I went so long without it! People often ask me if they "need" a spiral slicer (or spiralizer) when they start eating a healthy diet (how will I make my "zoodles"??).  I would argue that it's not an absolute essential, if you have the space to store it (it honestly doesn't take up as much room as you think but you do need a spot for it), then yes, you need it. For a long time I made my zucchini noodles with a julienne peeler, which also does the job, but this spiral slicer makes it so much easier. There are different blades for different types of slicing - and it's easy enough that kids can help too!

2) Natural Lotions, Soaps, and Essential Oils.  I was introduced to essential oils at the beginning of this year, and I have to admit, I've become a little obsessed. I use essential oils for everything: from cleaning and detoxifying to mood management and stress reduction, to skin care and dental health, and so much more.  These creams and soaps are among my favorite gifts for this year.  I honestly can't think of anyone who wouldn't love and appreciate the gift of self-care.  Don't forget to pick up a few for yourself too!

The moisturizing hand and body lotion makes a great pair with the moisturizing bath bar. It also blends perfectly with essential oils. Include a bottle of lavender essential oil for the gift of relaxation!

The moisturizing hand and body lotion makes a great pair with the moisturizing bath bar. It also blends perfectly with essential oils. Include a bottle of lavender essential oil for the gift of relaxation!

Click here to shop for the highest quality Essential Oils and skin care products - to find these great gift items, click on Shop, choose your language of choice, and then click on Personal Care. Then you'll see all the soaps and lotions you have to choose from!

Citrus Bliss Hand Lotion with Citrus Bliss Invigorating Bath Bar make a great gift! Add in a bottle of Wild Orange Essential Oil for the ultimate uplifting experience!

Citrus Bliss Hand Lotion with Citrus Bliss Invigorating Bath Bar make a great gift! Add in a bottle of Wild Orange Essential Oil for the ultimate uplifting experience!

3) Crock Pot Slow 6 Quart Slow Cooker.  I LOVE my slow cooker. I firmly believe that you don't need to spend a lot of money to get a high quality cooker, and I use mine at least twice a week. This is absolutely one of my top kitchen must-haves, so if there's someone on your list without one, now's your chance to give them the best gift ever!

4) Practical Paleo 2nd Edition by Diane Sanfilippo.  I have a LOT of Paleo Cookbooks, and I love them all. BUT, if it came down to choosing the one book that I thought was informative, easy to read, pretty to look at, and had the highest percentage of recipes that I actually make, Practical Paleo would be it.  The 2nd edition just came out this year and has a ton of new recipes, so don't worry about if they already have the 1st edition  - they will love this one even more.

5) Paleo Bakehouse. Who doesn't love something sweet every once in a while? You can feel good about giving a gift of sweet treats because these are PALEO BAKEHOUSE treats! Gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free, and no refined sugars. AND... they are delicious. Order online at paleobakehouse.com  and choose from their line of donuts, cookies, brownies, muffins, even HOT CHOCOLATE (makes an adorable gift with their new "This Mug Is Paleo" mug). Want to give a gift that keeps on giving? Forget the wine or cheese of the month clubs, the Paleo Bakehouse Subscription box is way more fun. I've been receiving these boxes since they launched the program and each box is better than the next. Want to buy a 3- or 6-month subscription? Use discount code cheer at checkout to save 20%! Your lucky friend will get an assortment of healthy paleo treats, and it's a surprise every time. If there are any leftovers, they freeze really well too so there's no need to worry about having too many cookies (is there such a thing?) Some of our favorites this season have been the cinnamon rolls, gingerbread cookies, and pumpkin donuts. Yes, this is another gift that you want to be sure to get for yourself too.

6) Kasandrinos Olive Oil.  Let's face it, EVERYONE can use a bottle or two of high quality Extra Virgin Olive Oil! Even for the non-chef, extra virgin olive oil remains at the top of the kitchen essential list, just after salt and pepper. Order a bottle of great-tasting, pure, Kasandrinos olive oil, wrap it up with a bottle of Kasandrinos fig balsamic vinegar and/or one of their all natural spice blends, and you've got the perfect gift!

kasandrinos organic extra virgin greek olive oil

Do you have and love any of the items on my list? What are your other favorite items to give or to get? Please share in the comments below!

I wish you a happy, safe, and healthy holiday, and a New Year filled with peace, joy and love. Julie

I wish you a happy, safe, and healthy holiday, and a New Year filled with peace, joy and love.

Julie

 

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