by Shannon (Gierl) Wintheiser
So if you're anything like me, the past few weeks filled with the sounds of 100 different versions of "Santa Baby", Facebook news feeds hijacked by friends' perfectly appointed festive living rooms, and 50,000 Kay Jewelers TV ads (I've actually started to believe that every kiss does begin with Kay), have all been like a small ringing in your ear getting louder and louder. You know, like the alarm you hit snooze on every morning until it reaches a certain frequency and urgency and you just HAVE to pay attention.
Well, we have reached that time folks. There are 8 days until Christmas, and I can no longer ignore those sleigh bells jingling...it's time to nail down those gifts, and get them wrapped and headed on their merry way to their appropriate destinations.
Luckily, I have a little theory and theme to my gift giving this year, and it is foolproof! Give a Radiant Gift this year. What's that you ask? Simple! Give the gift of good health. Everyone wants to get a leg up on their New Years resolutions, and almost everyone I know wants to be at least a tad bit healthier. So why not give them something they want and something you can feel good about giving (plus you get extra points for being "thoughtful"!)? It's a win win. And Santa (Baby) could stand to lose a few pounds himself. Listen up, big guy. Here are my top 5 healthy, radiant gifts from around Cincinnati, and who they are perfect for:
This place is seriously always hopping and it's definitely my favorite food spot in my homebase of Oakley. If you haven't been yet, they are big into local and fresh food. They source meat, dairy, and produce from farms nearby and they don't skimp on taste or flavor. Best for: a gift card from here would be a total hit with just about anyone on your list, but especially your friends who are into eating clean, or your mom who loves going to lunch with her girlfriends.
Another one of my go-to clean eating joints. It doesn't get anymore healthy and happy here in Cincy than at Happy Belly, where they are passionate about tasty vegan and gluten free breakfast and lunch. AND to make it easy they have vegan homemade granola and gorgeous "Dark Bark" chocolate ready-to-go in cute Christmas packaging. No wrapping required! Best for: anyone who loves food (so pretty much a safe bet for your besties at the office) and anyone who appreciates gluten free sweet treats. (Being a gluten free hungry gal myself, I am always thrilled when someone goes out of their way to offer me gluten free goodies, especially dessert!).
Full disclosure, I am a hot yoga and hot barre (come try it out!) instructor at Modo. But I am not biased. Their hot yoga classes are exactly what everyone's body will need and crave in January when the cold sets in for the long haul and everyone is plumped from the holiday feeding frenzy. And they're having a new sale everyday for the next eight days! Follow them on Facebook to make sure you don't miss the savings! They have snuggly sweatshirts (I live in my Modo camo sweatshirt) and cute new long sleeve shirts with so sweet yoga musings, like the one above. Or, give the gift of a 5, 10, or 20 class pass. Perfect for: the college-aged ladies (and men!) on your list who are totally into yoga/hippies/being green but maybe can't afford to pay for their own classes; your yogi/yogini friend (duh); your hubby you've been trying to drag into the studio with you for years now. Now he won't have an excuse. Note: you can order class cards online!
This line of organic, raw, and healing body, face, and hair products was started by a local lady who is into holistic healing and organic farming. And it shows. The products are beautiful, smell delightful, and everyone raves about them (i.e. they are perfect Christmas gifts and stocking stuffers). She even has a line for the men in your lives (hello, whipped beard butter!?!). Perfect for: the people you don't know that well or don't know what to get for; your grandma, mother, and favorite aunt; your male friends who are into supporting local businesses or whom have joined the growing populous of Cincinnatians with beards. Note: you can order online!
We gave out little jars of Bee Haven honey as favors at our wedding this Fall, and they were just too cute. And too yummy. Bee Haven has set up shop down at Findlay Market in Over-the-Rhine, and they don't just sell honey. Lately I've been on a beeswax candle kick (they burn cleaner than regular candles and actually help restore negative ions to the air which is great for your health). Oh, and they also sell little chapsticks and hand salve! Who to gift: Any foodie friends or friends who enjoy tea; almost any female who enjoys candles (tell them why you're giving them a beeswax candle and where it's from!); chapsticks and salves are perfect stocking stuffers for little angels. Note: you can order online!
Ok so that's it! My favorite local products all with a healthy/organic spin. I hope you enjoy making your list and checking it twice...and don't forget to treat yourself!!
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