First Christmas in NY! If that weren’t exciting enough, my family decided I should host. No pressure that I only moved into my new place a week ago and my sofa arrived like 20 minutes ago AND I still don’t have a dining table. Sure, come one come all.
Aw, who am I kidding? I love that everyone is coming and it just makes me that much more determined to get everything looking good and to be my regular hostess of the mostess. With the menus planned, the meat ordered from the local butcher, the grocery list made, the tree decorated (rather trailer trashy this year thanks to my exuberance for tinsel) and the family itinerary made, I was only lacking – PRESENTS!
I have decided that ALL my gifts this year are going to be LOCAL and not just NY local, but Brooklyn Local. So, every time Sula and I head out the door for a walk, we are checking out the independent local stores for great gift ideas. I encourage you to do the same this year. Of course you are probably good and already have your shopping done but if not…buy local!
Here are a few of the great finds I have made this week ! (Don’t read any further if you are an Antonelli!)
1. CHOCOLATE – Always a favorite stocking stuffer! I love the pin-up chocolate bars! What a great guy gift.
2. COFFEE – Finding a local coffee bean company is pretty easy these days. Bypass the Starbucks gift card this year and support your local coffee shop. Brooklyn has quite a few actually, but so far I am into Stumptown!
3. Gourmet Goodies! Epicurean shops are popping up everywhere these days and most pride themselves on stocking fresh local products. The Brooklyn Larder is no exception. The shop has their own cheese room with a big picture window that made me drool and they had interesting product, like the cheese boards made by the Brooklyn Slate Co. Clever use of local slate.
4. Winter Bulbs – Sending fresh flowers is great but I think it is such an extra treat to get winter bulbs as a Christmas gift. The gift that keeps on giving. Paperwhites are my favorite but find your local garden store and see what bulbs they have already “sprouting”. Buy a simple but elegant garden pot and what a wonderful gift for your green thumb friends. GRDN, on Hoyt St, has a great selection of bulbs and beautiful pots!
5. COOKIES! Yes, we all bake our own every year and some of us diehards are even in cookie groups. I do plan to make a batch of chocolate gingerbread tomorrow, but I am also going to order a pound of assorted Italian cookies from the bakery at the end of my street. How can I not? The smell from that door puts 5 lbs on my bootie every time I walk by! At $10 a lb., it’s a real deal! Shhh…don’t tell the fam I didn’t bake them myself!
Check out these gorgeous cannoli! Maybe I will have to buy some of these too 🙂