The winter season is a time to come together and reconnect with friends and family. Quite often bringing a little gift for the host or hostess of the festivity is part of this process. Rather than re-gifting something that you've already got at home or just grabbing a bottle of wine, why not put a little extra thought into your holiday hostess gifts this season? Maximize the impact by giving healthy gifts this holiday season.
There is a circle of energy to giving and receiving. On a recent visit to a monastery in Kauai, I was fortunate to meet with one of the swamis and he explained to me his philosophy of giving: he always chooses either something he has made or grown himself or something he would want to receive. This is a great filter through which to view host/hostess gifting.
Here are 10 novel ideas that will be a hit with the hostess or host.
1. Homemade Jam, Preserves, or Chutney
Sharing the fruits of your labor (literally) is a wonder gift for any host/hostess. Homemade preserves can contain local healthy ingredients and less sugar and additives than the store-bought options.
2. Scent Diffuser or Essential Oils
The spicy and sweet aromas often connected to the holiday season can spark joyful memories and strong emotions. They can also offer health benefits. Pure essential oil scents like cinnamon, pine, peppermint, or frankincense—all classic holiday scents—can help you weather seasonal stress. What better gift to help your host/hostess relax after the festivities?
3. The Gift of Words
A good friend of mine shared a birthday tradition with me that I have adopted for many celebrations in life, and it makes a unique host/hostess gift too. It’s called the gift of words. Usually, each guest briefly describes what they like or admire about the recipient of the gift. For a host/hostess, you can take a blank card and ask guests to each add a single sentence. It’s a powerful gift for all who participate.
4. A Photo Ornament or Framed Photo
Memory is a powerful happiness booster. By using technology, you can capture an image at the event and leave it framed for your hosts. Using either a Polaroid or an instant photo printer, you can have an actual photo in seconds or make a digital album on the day of the event. Follow it up by having a hard copy printed for the hosts and deliver it at a later date.
5. Breakfast of Champions
A lovely surprise can be bringing a healthy breakfast for the morning after. Some fresh orange juice and muffins or even a basket with free-range eggs and fresh bread. The healthier the better!
6. A Pay-It-Forward Gift
If your host/hostess has included a no-gift request, and you still want to honor them with a little something, making a charitable donation or planting a tree on their behalf is a wonderful option.
7. A Potted Plant
Potted plants are similar in price to cut flowers but the last. Bringing a little outdoor greenery inside during the winter is a fabulous mood boost too!
8. A Book You Love
When I find a book that is powerfully moving or inspiring, I want to share it with all my friends. What better way than to leave one at the end of the party, perhaps with a note explaining what you think they’ll like about it or why it spoke to you.
9. A Pineapple
Pineapples are symbols of welcoming. Since pineapples are exotic and on the expensive side too, a whole pineapple is definitely a unique and memorable host/hostess gift. Especially if accompanied by a note explaining the symbolism and how welcome you felt.
10. Spa at Home
Treat your hosts to a luxury in-home spa with some bath salts, massage oils, or a sleep mask. Everyone loves to be pampered!
Remember to make sure that your gifts align with who you are and how you want to define yourself. Gifts from the heart impact both the giver and the receiver so be really intentional in spreading happiness and health this holiday season.