December Staff Picks

Which things we'd love to receive as gifts this holiday season!

 

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Alex Recommends:

Vermont Wood Birch Candle by Farmhouse Pottery

Love the way this candle looks and smells! This hand-poured Vermont made candle comes in a vintage glass and smells like a magical forest! I love using candles in the winter months, since it gets so cold and dark out candles keep things warm and cozy, and this particular candle will make you feel like you are in the woods but still can enjoy the comfort of your home!


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Alyssa Recommends:

Peppermint Spice CBD Balm by The Healing Rose

All I want in my stocking this year is a jar of the Peppermint Spice Extra Strength CBD salve by The Healing Rose. After two wrist surgeries, this is now an essential to have with me for those times when I feel achey. The clove, ginger and arnica oils are the perfect warming combination and it smells so nice! Bonus - the company is Massachusetts based and women owned!


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Bex Recommends:

Wellness Tonics Sampler by Moondeli

During the winter months there's nothing I like more than pretending I'm on the British Baking Show as I concoct adaptogenic delicacies for those near and dear to me. A perfect gift that would allow me to "double double toil and [happily] trouble" would be Moondeli's wonder-box of wellness tonics. If you're also interested in boosting your body, mind and spirit, you'll consider adding spoonfulls to your daily teas and brews, and you might also scoop them into baked goods and savory treats galore. From Bliss Booster to Energy Tonic, these versatile powders are beautifully formulated, crafted and packaged--and you get to try 6 of them! Crikey!!!


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Caitlin Recommends:

AER Next Level Deodorant by Vapour Beauty

AER Next-Level deodorant has quickly found its space in my everyday. My first time applying this deodorant was pre-flight to California with freshly-shaved pits and stress sweat coming on hard before leaving my apartment - “am I missing anything? wallet? ID? keys? essential non-toxics?” After 6+ hours flying across country, I am happy to share delightful news - not a single bump or burn on these pits, no smell other than the intoxicating aroma of Palo Santo, and no sweat marks on my clothes! I’d say Vapour passes the pit test with flying colors! This deodorant is truly next-level! AER is alcohol-free and made thoughtfully with organic and non-gmo ingredients. Available in Lavender Myrrh, Ginger Grapefruit and Palo Santo Blood Orange (my personal favorite)! Gift your pits with Vapour!


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Caleb Recommends:

The Spice Trekkers by Epices de Cru

This book and spice collection is a wonderful gift. Emily and I walked into a brightly colored and aroma filled hole-in-the-wall spice shop in Montreal last month and walked out with new friends and a new line of well sourced spices from around the world. Epices de Cru is a decades old spice importer in Montreal now its second generation of ownership. The sensation of flipping through the pages of this book and cooking with the collection of spices hidden within the box embodies the feeling of walking into that shop in the Jean Talon Market. Enjoy!


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Debanjali Recommends:

Tarot Deck & Guidebook by The Wild Unknown

I have been eyeing this beautiful magical tarot deck for months, now! Tarot is an essential intuitive tool for me, and the Wild Unknown is, without a doubt, the one I'd like to add to my collection next. This deck is a full of nature-oriented whimsy, which makes it a great meditative and centering tool. Featuring dreamy archetypes such the lion-centered Strength and tree-based Emperor cards, the images immediately flood me with feelings of peace and strength. The deck comes with a guidebook, which is a great resource if you are new to pulling Tarot or unsure how to interpret a non-traditional deck. What a lovely gift this would be, especially during the stressful holiday season!


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Elizabeth Recommends:

Coffees from Tandem Coffee Roasters

Great Coffee from Portland, Maine! Think Dark Chocolate, Burnt Honey, Cherry, and Misty Mountain Hops for their "STOKER: Kinda Darker" ...and... think Lemon-Lime, Pomegranate Hard Candy for their "LA FOLIE: Antigua, Guatemala.


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Emily Recommends:

Tea Cup in Chalk Speckle by Myrth Ceramics

Drinking a pot of tea with my husband Caleb is one of my favorite daily rituals. Two years ago he bought a beautiful little Japanese mug that he drinks from every morning - and I've been on the hunt for my perfect mug ever since. These gorgeous hand-thrown 4oz ceramic tea cups were made locally by Abby and Eric of Myrth Ceramics, and I'd absolutely LOVE to be gifted one this holiday season.


Helen Recommends:

Hand beaded Earrings by Torry Khakali

These earrings are handmade by Massai women in Kenya and come to us via a local Somerville importer. The beautiful and bold designs inspire me to remember their source and the hands that made them, might they also inspire you?


Jessica Recommends:

Homemade Potato Poaca by Magic Bites Bakery

All I want for Christmas is a platter of these little puffy potato pastries to share with my family, friends, and most importantly myself. Magic Bites is a small, family-run kitchen out of Arlington bringing delicious, grab-n'-go Turkish snacks to the hungry people of Boston. I'd recommend heating up the poaca for a few seconds in the microwave so it gets warm inside. Who can resist potatoes and bread? Nobody, that's who.


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John Recommends:

Endangered Collection Bowls by Acacia Creations

Give a gift that fosters biodiversity, while also being cute as heck! These gorgeous carved and painted bowls featuring zebras, elephants, and (my personal favorite) sea turtles are the perfect gift for the animal lover in your life, and 10% of the proceeds go to help preserve wildlife!


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Michael Recommends:

Soil 2017 by Slow Money Institute

If someone, anyone (!) close to me said they wanted to buy me a gift for the holidays, this extraordinary book would be my top choice. The subtitle is: "Notes Towards the Theory and Practice of Nurture Capital", and it is first of all a beautiful book in both style and photos. More to the point it is a very thoughtful and hopeful book and we sure could use hope now. It goes deep into how important soil is to every aspect of our health and lives and, in fact, to all life on earth. Also, how soil health in agriculture can be improved to mitigate the damaging affects of global warming. The first two lines of this beautiful book by Woody Tasch are: "I'm sad as hell and I'm not going to fake it anymore. Our democracy is ebbing and carbon is flowing--into the atmosphere, that is instead of back into the soil, where it belongs". An outstanding approach to creating the society and planet we all wish to live on.


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Mike Recommends:

Tote Bag by Cambridge Naturals Brand

My gift pick for this holiday season is the Cambridge Naturals canvas tote bag. I love things that have utility, durability and simplicity - and this bag has all three! This would make the perfect gift for someone that aims to live a more sustainable, waste free lifestyle, all while looking super cool and representing Cambridge Naturals as well. It's an item that will last for decades if you treat it right. By gifting this bag to someone you love, it will allow them to show their support everyday for their favorite independent, community focused, family-owned health and wellness local small business!


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Miles Recommends:

Sol Good Caramel Protein Bars by Sun Warrior

Sol Good protein snack bars are low sugar, high fiber and protein and really delicious! I've been a fan of these since they came out earlier this year. One can't go wrong with salted caramel, and I'll be snacking on these all throughout December. Give me a whole case, please!


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Nancy Recommends:

WPD Matcha Book by W & P Design

If you’re a matcha lover, THIS IS THE BOOK YOU NEED! The book starts with a detailed description of what matcha is and how it is traditionally prepared in the Japanese tea ceremony. It also gives you an in-depth description of matcha’s natural health benefits, particularly its enormous antioxidant power (10x higher than green tea!). But what I really love about this book is that it shows you that matcha isn’t just tea: It contains so many delicious but also surprising recipes that are based on matcha - from sweet deserts (think: ice cream and pancakes) and savory dishes (pasta, curry!) to cocktails and non-alcoholic drinks - I would never have thought that it can all be done with matcha! If you’re serious about matcha and find tea a bit too boring, this is the book for you!


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Nick Recommends:

Iridescent by Counter Culture Coffee

Counter Culture roasts some of the best coffee around, and their Iridescent Winter Blend is pretty darn good. Coffee in general is pretty much the best beverage that there is, but Counter Culture's Iridescent Winter Blend takes the cake. A limited edition blend created every year of their "best, most interesting coffes" it is a smooth, wonderful cup of coffee.


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Rachel Recommends:

All wraps! by Sweet Dreams Heat Wraps

As winter approaches, I notice the cold weather tends to make my muscles a little stiffer. If one of these were gifted to me, my winter would be so much cozier, and would make the coldest days a little more bearable! These heat wraps of all different sizes are the perfect gift to those in your life who are looking to relieve aches and pains, and serve as a wonderful way to get warm and unwind after a long day. The versatile patterns are simply adorable and you can even take your pick of natural scents, indicated on the front of the box. Just put it in the microwave for the amount of time recommended on the package and let the relaxation begin!


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Sally Recommends:

Alpaca Fingerless Gloves by Andes Gifts

I love to go birding all year round, and winter weather doesnt keep me from going out to look for the few brave ones that linger and the Owls that lurk. But, my fingers always suffer. Its hard to hold the binoculars with gloves on, or thumb quickly through my field guide to identify a rare transient before it takes flight. And, without gloves my frozen fingers make matters worse. Ive found the perfect holiday gift for me ! A warm, cozy pair of Alpaca fingerless gloves from Andes Gifts. These beautiful handmade gloves come in many colors, are super soft, and allow me to enjoy my birding adventures.


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Sam Recommends:

Nail Lacquer in Carmine by tenoverten

This lusciously crimson nail laquer starts neon with the first coat, but deepens to a true blood red with a second layer. The formula is clean of major chemicals of concern found in conventional polish - no formaldehyde, dibutyl pthalate, tuolene, or triphenyl phosphate to be found. The staying power and finish are fantastic. If I were gifted this vampy varnish this holiday season, I'd be thrilled!


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Sarah Recommends:

Turkish Towel by Derin

I am completely in love with Turkish Towels from Derin.They are high absorbency and super duper soft. The small towel makes a perfect hair wrap... it wraps and tucks easily and stays in place while while wicking moisture away. I use the large towel as my bath towel (so much less space in the laundry!). It also makes a great towel for hot yoga, travel, etc. My pups also each have their own as they are wonderful for drying dogs after a bath. Can we say spoiled?! Almost any one can find a use for one of these and they come in a variety of colors to choose from.


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Vicki Recommends:

Mademoiselle Swell by Prim Botanicals

Smelling good isn't the most important thing, but it sure does feel great when other's comment on your sweet smell. I once had a friend tell me that he would do anything I told him to do just because I smelled great, and it was all thanks to this roll on. Prepare to rule the world, all because of your smell!


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Zach Recommends:

Natural Patches of Vermont

With blends for everything from aching muscles to migraines to allergies, these wonderful patches are great stocking stuffers. Handmade in Vermont using only pure essential oils, they deliver the powerful oils in a conveneint and skin safe patch format.