I love this time of year. The smell of pine, holiday cheer, cozy gatherings around the fireplace and spending quality time with family and friends. The Christmas season is upon us. Last weekend…Santa Claus Parade. This weekend we went to our first Christmas party (‘ugly sweater’) of several that are upcoming. Next…the good ol’ tree chop. Weekends are filling up and the hustle n’ bustle is definitely in the air. December 25th is less than a month away folks!
I had so much fun putting this little (well actually kinda large(ish) gift guide together. Hopefully you will find it useful and you will snag a few ideas, as you check off buying for those who are on your ‘nice’ list this year. Sit back…get cozy with a blanket and a yummy warm bevy. Guaranteed to get you in the spirit of giving. Many of the suggestions in this guide are items that I own and LOVE or are currently on ‘my wish list’…hint, hint…wink, wink! Browse away at your leisure and have fun clicking away like mad on all the products links that I have provided throughout! (Note: I am not partial to all the specific brands…they are merely gift suggestions!!!)
For your bookshelf…
These are all must-haves for your bookshelf collection…to be read of course first! I highly recommended these reads to almost everyone I meet…those following a ‘paleo lifestyle’ or not. I have purchased several copies myself, for special people in my life…and I honestly can’t say enough wicked things about these incredible authors…and dear friends of mine. Inspire someone to take control of their health, learn more about the science behind nutrition and ultimately find their inner chef!
‘Do you want to lose fat and stay young, all while avoiding cancer, diabetes, heart disease, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and a host of other illnesses? The Paleo Solution incorporates the latest, cutting edge research from genetics, biochemistry and anthropology to help you look, feel and perform your best.’
‘Written by Robb Wolf, a research biochemist who traded in his lab coat and pocket protector for a whistle and a stopwatch to become one of the most sought after strength and conditioning coaches in the world. With Robb’s unique perspective as both scientist and coach you will learn how simple nutrition, exercise and lifestyle changes can radically change your appearance and health for the better.’
- Lose weight?
- Feel better?
- Have more energy?
- Reduce inflammation and pain?
- Reverse diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, ulcerative colitis, lupus, autism, diabetes, and obesity?
- Look, feel, and perform at your best ever?
If you answered yes…then Robb Wolf’s 30 Day Total Transformation is your answer. This is a 60-page, new, interactive multimedia guide is amazing! He includes sections on nutrition, exercise, your first 30-days, a month of paleo meals, shopping lists, recommended resources and more!
I have personally read Greg Everett’s Olympic Weightlifting book and was also fortunate enough to attend his weightlifting seminar when he came to Toronto last year. This man is a wealth of knowledge in this area. Take a minute to check out his Catalyst Athletics site, where you will find all kinds of goodies and products for sale in his online store.
You can purchase items separately…or buy them in nicely bundled packages. Such items include books, DVD’s, posters, Performance Menu subscriptions, tons of equipment and much more! Take advantage of their ‘Cyber Monday’ offers, which gives you 25 % of all DVD’s! This would make a super gift for that strong guy or gal in your life…get shopping!
In 3 words…totally wicked awesome!!! This Paleo cookbook is a total MUST HAVE for anyone! You are fully guaranteed to find all sorts of yummy dishes in this book that that will tickle your fancy! Since getting this cookbook, I basically cart it around with me everywhere. People at work are now so intrigued and many of my friends have ordered a copy of their own since!
This book is stuffed full of delicious recipes that will make your mouth water just by looking all their gorgeous full colour photos! DROOL…Cooking instructions are easy to follow, steps are concise and the end products are definitely something to write home about.
I have said it before, but I will say it again…THIS BOOK IS A MASTERPIECE of BEAUTIFULNESS!!! IT ROCKS! When you buy this, get it in your hands and find a recipe that you want to attempt…you will right away feel like you will be successful in doing so. They have truly set you up for success. Each recipe is paired with a stunning photo of the finished product on the right side.
I really appreciate that the recipes don’t call for a million and one ingredients and that the instructions are SUPER EASY to follow. Fully doable for first time chefs and pros alike.
Who doesn’t love magazines?!? I know I do!!! Our coffee table always home to various different ones. The gift of a magazine subscription is a beautiful thing. It is the gift that keeps on giving all year round.
When I was at the Ancestral Health Symposium back in August, I was fortunate enough to pick up a copy of this magazine…of which I thoroughly enjoyed reading! ’Paleo magazine is the first, and only, print magazine dedicated to the Paleo/Primal lifestyle. Each issue is packed with the latest research, exercise and nutrition. They also give you interviews, recipes, reviews and much more!’ This sweet read is def on my own wish list this year…
For your kitchen…
I am a huge fan of anything Le Creuset. A few years ago, I received a wonderful Le Creuset Dutch Oven for Christmas from my mother-in-law. It is a lifesaver…we use it ALL the time. TRIPLE LOVE!!!
They can be a bit of a pricier gift…however, I have to say…that they are fully worth every penny. Gorgeous and durable to last you an entire lifetime! Keep your eyes peeled for various Le Creuset products at discounted prices at their outlet stores and other house and home shops such as Winners. I hope to be adding to my Le Creuset collection soon…as there is an outlet that just opened across the border, in Niagara Falls, at the Fashion Outlet Mall.
If your household doesn’t already have one…get one! Crock-Pot…’the original slow cooker’, is key for making batches of stews, chillies, soups and other meat dishes. Super easy to use, but the benefits in producing delicious dishes and saving loads of time are definite factors for people with busy lives.
You can find these bad boys on sale at many stores for under $ 4o! We just started using ours fairly recently…and wonder why we didn’t start sooner. Crock pots are da bomb!!! A full-on essential kitchen item in my opinion.
This is a unique and fun gift for someone who maybe has all the standard kitchen essentials. It is a fantastic tool that turns a variety of vegetables into super curly ‘noodles.’ You can basically use anything from sweet potatoes, to zucchini…in order to create many yummy dishes. This handy device also serves as a neat way to make different meals that will appeal to your children. Fun and inventive…we use ours often. Note – not the easiest to find…so you may have to do a little bit of searching for this one – well worth it though!!! Read my full post on this cool kitchen gadget here.
8. b) Mandoline Slicer
Also, if the ‘chef’ or ‘foodie’ in your life doesn’t own a madoline slicer, I would highly recommend getting them one. It really does make slicing and dicing much easier! I have two. The basic one I have is the OXO Hand-Held Mandonline Slicer and the more complex (fancier) one I have is the Borner Germany V-Slicer Plus Mandoline . Both of them are fabulous! Feel free to print off my ‘beet chip’ and ‘sweet potato chip‘ recipes for them, to include with the gift!
For your body:
9. Mobility products
“Every human being should be able to perform basic maintenance on themselves. You know what to eat, how to train, and what to do if you have a cut; you should also know how to fix your tight hips, painful knees, and stiff shoulders, and how to make yourself faster and more powerful. It’s too much to mobilize everything, all the time, everyday. Start somewhere”
From bands to rumble rollers and all the way to ‘The Stick’…you will find what you need to take care of your muscles. These items are sold individually or in ‘packs’ that make fabulous gift for those you care about.
‘All Inzer Forever Belts ™ are one solid thickness of the finest, select, exclusive leather.’ This is an ideal gift for someone in your life, who is into lifting some heavy weight. Inzer offers high-quality products that will stand the test of time. Take a minute to head over to their site to check out other products from ‘The World Leader in Powerlifting Apparel.” They come is a rainbow of colours and various styles. I personally love the forest green!
My husband likes to say that the last thing I need is another hood…but come on…can one really ever have too many!?! I don’t think so! Anyways, check out some of these awesome T’s, hoodies and fancy duds from some amazing people. Thank me later…as the men and women (kids too) in your life will love being all decked out in these comfy clothes. Great for the gym or for lounging after a big holiday feast.
Why not head over to Catalyst Athletics to buy one of their fabulous tanks or one of their new ‘jerk hoodies’!?! You could also dress your entire family in Nom Nom Paleo’s adorable clothing. Check it out…as they have a little something for everyone over there. If you want to make a statement, saunter on over to The Food Lovers’ Primal Palate’s shop to purchase a t-shirt that tells it like it is! Choose from 4 different, cleverly crafted designs…or heck if you can’t decide, snag ‘em all!!! Finally…mosey on over to Balanced Bites, to pick up a t-shirt for that special bacon lover in your life. There are many different styles and colours to choose from in her shop as well!
For your loved ones who were ‘extra nice’ this year:
12. Big(ger) Ticket Items
Depending on your budget and how you celebrate, you may wish to spoil some of your special peeps with some more expensive, but wicked-awesome presses.
Imagine how happy ‘the weightlifter’ on your list would be if they woke up on Christmas morning to see some solid new weight plates or a barbell, with bows on them under the tree. These types of gifts are great to go in on as a larger group as well! Check out companies like: Pendlay, Muscle Driver, Westside Barbell, Catalyst Athletics and Rogue Fitness for a plethora of such products.
I do not own one myself, but everyone that I speak with, who does…absolutely loves theirs. These machines are a terrific gift, for that serious user…the one that you know will actual use it to it’s max, and not let it sit on the counter un-touched.
‘Whether you’re looking to add more fruits and vegetables into your menu, introduce your family and friends to culinary treats, or simplify everyday kitchen tasks, the Total Nutrition Center package is for you. Bring home the same power and performance, in a blender, experienced by chefs and restaurants around the globe and start making smoothies, soups, frozen desserts and more.’ Find the one that is right for you or yours…
Finally…why not give ‘an experience’ to someone special on your list this year!? It is something a little it different, often overlooked, but sure to be received with great appreciation.
Workshop/Seminar – sign ‘em up and register them for an upcoming nutrition or strength training seminar in your area. Check out OPT Nutrition Series, Catalyst Athletics Olympic Weightlifting Seminar, MovNat Workshops and Westside Barbell Events for more information on their upcoming gigs.
Nutrition Consultation – give the gift of health and help someone get on the right track by hooking them up with a nutrition consultation. Head over to Robb Wolf’s site to read about his qualified crew (registered dietitians) over there and the services they have to offer!
Cooking classes/demonstrations – another really neat idea, would be to give the gift of cooking classes or a kitchen skill session (eg: knife techniques). All you have to do is do a little ‘google search’ for offerings in your area to find something of interest. If you live in the Toronto area…enroll a loved one in the ‘GE Cafe Chefs Series.’
There they will “get intimate with Toronto’s hottest chefs. In these demonstration-style cooking classes, you’ll learn about cooking local food, learn tips and techniques while enjoying a delicious dinner and wine from Stratus Vineyards.” Click on the above link for a full description of classes that are still available.
Meat/Veggie CSA – give the gift of farm fresh food deliveries, from farms you can trust. Take a minute to check out Eat Wild site, and learn more about the different CSA farm shares and programs that they have going on in many locations. We started one this year…and look forward to our box of delicious meat every month. A useful ‘source for providing healthy, safe, natural and nutritious meats and other wild edibles’ to your family and friends. A gift that will last many months of the year!
Mini-vacation/Retreat – Don’t forget about the charm in planning a wee weekend getaway for you and your partner, as a way of surprising them over the holidays. This could be a mini-vacation to a resort, yoga centre, bed and breakfast or ski excursion. The options here are endless…and sure to knock their wool socks off!
Other nifty gift ideas include: a good quality knife set, cutting board, market produce buggy, nested bowl set, food dehydrator, fermentation pot, cast iron skillet, ‘black-out’ blinds…or even a basket filled with assorted ‘paleo’ items/products.
Stocking Stuffer Ideas:
- Dark chocolate
- Vitamin D drops
- Fish oil
- Wrist wraps
- Garlic press
- Pairing knife
- Measuring spoons
- Hand blender
- Vitamin E
- Sigg water bottle
- Athletic tape
- Oil of oregano
- Coconut butter/oil/flakes etc…
- Tea towels
- Meat thermometer
- Avocado slicer
- Poach pod
- ‘Paleo’ Christmas cards
Holiday Shopping Tips:
- Shop around – take some time to check out different online sites, as well as in-store deals
- Subscribe to ‘company’ newsletters when possible – they often send you promo codes for special offers
- Remember – the quality of your gifts over quantity matters! Make your gift giving meaningful!!!
- Don’t forget to check out sites like Groupon and Living Social for excellent deals!
- Try searching online for discounted shipping options and codes
- Get creative with your gift wrapping, to save on paper (I like to wrap gifts in tea towels!)
- Support independent companies and local shops in your neighbourhood – separate blog post about this COMING SOON…
HAPPY SHOPPING & ALL THE BEST FOR A MAGICAL HOLIDAY SEASON TO YOU & YOURS!!!