Today's post was supposed to be a big photo-filled post showing you all my outdoor Christmas decorations. But it's not, mostly because on Sunday the dogs decided to go on an expedition down a bluff by my parents' house. They made it down OK, but the old one got stuck down there and couldn't get back up and the young one did make it back up but through a mud pit filled with burrs. If you have never experienced the hell that is a huge hairy dog covered in what must have been at least 1,000 burrs caked on with mud, you don't really know what a pain in the butt that is. Suffice to say, Sunday ended up being filled with rescuing the stranded dog (Mr. Much More Patient had to rappel down with a rope and walk to town on the beach with her) and then hour upon hour of bathing them and trying to get the burrs out. And nothing happened outside.

That's probably OK though, because I've been meaning to share some gift guides with you. I didn't do my own gift guide this year because they are a ton of work and I have to do one for work so I thought I'd take a year off (or maybe it's two years now) and just share some of the great gift guides that other people have done.

Michael Ruhlman, professional chef and author, offered up two gift guides: One for small items and one for bigger, serious chef kind of stuff. One note on his list: He says he favors Wustoff knives and I used to too, but then I tried the knife recommended by Cook's Illustrated, which has quickly become my favorite. And at less than $30, I can't imagine why you'd look elsewhere. PBS also has a good guide for every kind of cook.

Some gifts for gardeners. My addition to the list: A Sneeboer gardening tool from Garden Tool Co. Few people will treat themselves to these amazing tools (they should, but it's definitely a treat), but I can't think of a better gift for a hands-on gardener.

The New York Times has a gift guide for just about any kind of person on your list. And so does Apartment Therapy. I'm particularly fond of their White Elephant gift guide, but since the kids in our family are now old enough to join in, some of these are not appropriate for the Impatient Gardener family Christmas. Although something tells me my nephew would miss the joke in the "Sponge Worthy" sponge holder.

The Verge has some interesting things on its home essentials gift guide.

I love giving books for Christmas, especially these days when I think people are less likely to buy themselves a nice book. My niece and nephews get books from us every year (whether they like it or not) and I enjoy picking them out more than almost any other present we give. Here's Publisher's Weekly's best books list for 2015, which is always a good place to start.

So, now the big question: How are you doing on your holiday shopping? I'm feeling pretty good about it. Between scaling back a little bit and just having fewer people to shop for these days (which is sad because if we're not buying for them anymore it's because they have passed away), I'm in OK shape. I have one very difficult person on my list who I have no ideas for, but if all else fails, he's getting a Sponge Worthy sponge holder.

1 comment :

  1. I'm almost done shopping, now comes wrapping and mailing out of state to siblings and their kids and now our great nephews. But this year is almost a complete book year. Did not plan it but I am like you, books make great gifts and I try to be creative. Some are new, somesecomdhand and one niece is getting a mini library and cool bookends.


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