The Plan to Eat Podcast

#41: Holiday Gift Giving with MacKenzie Koppa + PTE Gift Guide

November 11, 2022 Plan to Eat Season 1 Episode 41
The Plan to Eat Podcast
#41: Holiday Gift Giving with MacKenzie Koppa + PTE Gift Guide
Show Notes Transcript

Join us for an interview with MacKenzie Koppa to talk about thoughtful gift giving followed by an overview of Plan to Eat's 2022 Holiday Gift Guide! We hope you enjoy the Holiday season!

Check out our Holiday Gift Guide: https://www.plantoeat.com/blog/2022/11/2022-holiday-gift-guide/

Connect with MacKenzie:
Website: https://mackenziekoppa.com/
IG: @mackenziekoppa
Podcast: https://mackenziekoppa.com/podcast
Join her Holiday Bootcamp!

Connect with the Podcast recipes here.
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Contact us: podcast@plantoeat.com

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[00:00:00] 

I'm Riley and I'm Roni. And this is the plan to eat podcast, where we have conversations about meal planning, food, and wellness. To help you answer the question what's for dinner.

Roni: Hello, and thank you for joining us. On another episode of the plan to Eat podcast. Today, we have a special interview with MacKenzie Koppa. We are talking about thoughtful gift giving. And we are also debuting our 2022. Holiday gift guide that Riley and I put together. 

This is also a special release episode. It is going out on Friday instead of Wednesday, we are doing that so that you have a little extra time to look at the gift guide and potentially think about adding some of these things to your holiday shopping list. 

Riley: This is our first ever Plan to Eat gift guide. We've never put together a gift guide before. So we're really excited and we are pretty intentional about the things that we put on it.

Um, we can't wait to tell you [00:01:00] more about. 

Roni: Hi Mackenzie. Thanks for joining us again on the podcast today.

MacKenzie: Thanks so much for having me back. I always love chatting with you girls.

Riley: We're really excited today because we're talking about gifting, um, and we just think that this will be a really fun episode to help people get inspired for the holidays.

MacKenzie: I agree, and I think that it can be intimidating sometimes, especially because we see. Instagram and all the fabulous ideas and things that people come up with and Pinterest, and so I don't know, my perspective might be a little bit more of a slice of reality for people.

Roni: Well that's good cuz as far as I know, Riley and I are normal people, so

MacKenzie: That's

Riley: Yeah. And I think our listeners are normal people and reality is really good for all of us.

MacKenzie: Yes, I agree. And I do have, I think, a different perspective because I have teenagers, which is also like a different world of gift giving,

Riley: this, I feel like this [00:02:00] is jumping right in, but like, do you feel like as your kids have gotten older that the gifts are more expensive because they're Oh, yeah. . Okay.

MacKenzie: Oh yes. It's more like the, okay, I can give you this much money towards that thing that you are saving for because I cannot buy you a thousand dollars camera. But here's a little bit towards it. But that's, I mean, definitely. I mean, especially my 16 year old, he's, his hobbies are all about film and you know, like he.

Built a computer this year. Like I, I don't know what to do for you, man. Like, here's a little bit, but I think that my tip with the teenagers is, okay, so for the younger kids, you pretty much ignore everything that they tell you they want on their list. And for the, Yeah, like, well, and like my daughter, my seven year old, she got the Target gift catalog and went through, you know, circled everything.

It was like, Mom, can I go on your Amazon and just like, look for gifts for [00:03:00] eight year olds. You know, it was like you can all you want as something to keep you busy, but I am not buying. Any of that. But then, so you kinda ignore them, like you have to pay attention with them. Like what? What do I actually know you would want?

Because you obviously don't know what you would want. But with the teenagers, there comes this point where it flips and you do have to listen to what they want. And it's much easier if you're just like, Okay. You really just want the gift card. You really don't want me to get creative and come up with something that I think is cool.

You really just want the money, or you want the gift card, or you know, whatever. Just listen to them because they're actually gonna like that thing and they're actually going to use it because they know more about who they are and what they like and what they're doing and what they fill their time with, and they typically have much more honed.

Interest at that point. Like my son, it, it, that is his all-encompassing world is doing all of the film [00:04:00] stuff. So he doesn't want some random gift that I buy him. He wants what he wants and he's going to use it. So it just makes more sense to listen to them at that point.

Riley: Over everyone with children under 10 or maybe maybe less than 10

MacKenzie: Yeah. I mean, 10 is like, yeah, that, right, right at that edge.

I've got a 10 year old and she's. The gifts have changed. She doesn't want toys anymore, which sometimes when it's toys, it can feel easier, although you're really kicking yourself after Christmas when you're like, Why are there all these toys around? But I find that she's like, she's starting to be interested in clothes.

She wants new decor for her room because she doesn't want the little kid decor anymore. Like she wants lip gloss and she wants, like, I got her a, um, flat iron. That I know she can use. That's this really great, easy to use flat iron that she's actually been learning how to use mine. So I got [00:05:00] her her own.

Like those things that make them a little bit more independent. And I think a lot of it's about paying attention to what they are actually going to use and like, and isn't going to just end up being more clutter. In your house because that's one of the most annoying things about Christmas . So yeah, I think that that, that 10 11 age is definitely starting to transition out of the like toy era.

But yeah, once they hit about 12, 13, go ahead and just listen to what they want. Because you're just gonna save yourself a lot of headache and heartache. And I think it's almost harder for the parents to be like, Oh, but I, I liked, like surprising you and you know, having, you be all shocked on Christmas morning or whatever, but it's not really what they want

So you have to make it about them and not about you.

Roni: What do you think that is, the motivation for the, for the younger kids, for the things that like they don't actually want? Is it [00:06:00] just that they like things that are like bright colored or shiny? Like what's, what's the things that they're drawn to that you think are like, No, no, no, no, no.

MacKenzie: Well, it's just the idea of stuff like they get that catalog and it's like, this all looks amazing. This is so much fun. It's all gonna be new. I promise I'm gonna use that fairy toy that flies wherever they're gonna use it. Maybe for two days and then no more. And I have found if I buy like, maybe like one, one or two of the really kitchy things that I know are gonna go in the back of the closet and then never be looked at again.

But then by them the like, everything else that I get is stuff that I know they'll actually use because I've paid attention to who they are. Then I save myself the headache of having all of this junk around that nobody's using and I end up going through their room and like pulling out anyway, and they don't even ever notice that it's gone.

But it, it. They end up appreciating it more, [00:07:00] but I, if you don't get any of that, then they do like have the, I thought, you know, my friend got whatever. And so it's like you have to strike that balance of like, okay, you got the one annoying thing, but here's all the stuff you're going to use. And then, and that's the stuff that has the longevity and they end up being appreciative for it.

Even if they're never gonna say it, they're never gonna let you know. They're appreciative of it, but they are.

Riley: I think the biggest thing that is coming out of everything you just said for me is just the intentionality of it. It's not just getting that Amazon or Target gift guide in the mail and being like, Oh, my kids are gonna love all these things and buying all of them. It's like that. Paying attention to who they are.

Paying attention to your things your friends say throughout the year, and I think maybe that's the planner in you and the planner and us that is just. I know Christmas and the holidays are coming eventually, and when this thing pops up in my Instagram feed that I think Roni's gonna love, I'm like, Well, it's August, but maybe I'll buy it.

Although I'm the worst, because if I buy something for somebody in August, I will [00:08:00] give that to give it to 'em. I cannot wait . So I do have to kind of temper myself and not buy it right When I see it. I have to kinda wait, but just kind of the paying attention and thinking, Oh, this person, this friend, or my kid, or my husband, or my spouse, whatever.

That they like this or they want this, and then just making a mental note. Because when December 15th rolls around, I will not remember. I have to write it down somewhere.

MacKenzie: Yeah, don't make a mental note.

Riley: no, yeah, 

MacKenzie: biggest mistake, . 

You gotta put it down somewhere.

Have it in a Trello board, in a planner, in your notes app. Have it somewhere, have a specified list. I just, right at the end, when this is pod, when this podcast is coming out, I'm just finishing up my holiday bootcamp where we are like, you know, making sure everybody's dialed in.

But that's one of the things we have a whole day all about gifting, where it's like, you gotta write the stuff down. You gotta figure it out. You gotta actually pay attention because I know my kids say things. All the time that they want. And that isn't just the, Oh, I've gone through this [00:09:00] catalog, but if I don't make note of it, it's gone.

It's Alonzo.

Riley: You're right. That is a good thing for me to, I, cuz I said mental note, but I didn't really mean it. I was, Oh, I was driving down the road saying write it down, and I said mental note. So

Roni: I mean, even selfishly I write, I have two separate lists. I have ones that's like gifts for other people. I also have a list for myself because inevitably, like my mother-in-law's gonna ask what I want for Christmas, and if I didn't make my own list, I'm be like, I don't remember those things that I thought were really cute all the way back in September.

You know? So also make a lift for yourself.

MacKenzie: that I just buy for myself, cuz there's not a whole lot of people buying for me. So like, this is your Christmas. This is my Christmas.

Riley: That's awesome.

MacKenzie: a lot of times they're boring, like health related things, so, you

Riley: But you like it.

MacKenzie: I do.

I want, That's what I want. Yeah. I'm not gonna go through the toy catalog, like I want what I want. And they have good sales on Black Friday for all the health stuff. So, [00:10:00] you know, you gotta do it. But that was one thing I was kicking myself last year.

Cause I was so ahead of the game. I bought everything in October. I was like, Look at me, Go. I've got everybody's gifts. And then Black Friday came and I, it really registered how much I could have saved that. And I was like, this was not worth it. I, I, yeah, I'm organized. Yeah, I have everything, but I just spent so much more money than was necessary.

If I just would've waited for the sales, then I would be so much better off. And so I think that has been a big thing going into this year. I am paying attention to the influencers who I know. We'll talk about sales on the things that I am interested in. I am using Honey way more this year where you like put in the stuff that you're interested in so that you actually get those alerts when they go on sale.

And then I'm just, I'm doing a good job of planning out the lists of what I wanna get for everybody and just [00:11:00] knowing, okay, that weekend is my time to get after it and do the buying cuz I don't wanna spend hundreds of dollars more than was necessary.

Riley: I think budget is a big part of this conversation, um, of just gifting. Because if you do all of your shopping at one time, it does add up, but you save a lot more than if you bought it throughout the year. For me, I, I have been trying to not spend all that money out at one time and trying to kind of buy it throughout the year, or not throughout the year, basically since like October.

Um, but so do you have, do you have a budget for every person that you buy for? Do you have just an overall budget? How do you navigate that piece of the puzzle?

MacKenzie: Well, I typically try to spend around the same amount on each 

Riley: Mm-hmm. 

MacKenzie: but I will, I hate the word influencer. I use some of my influencer powers to get some things for free, and so I have to decide like whether I'm going to count that in the total budget of what [00:12:00] they're getting or not, you know? So sometimes it's like maybe I won't count the whole thing towards the budget of what it would've really been, but it is like a legitimate, like expensive thing.

So I will have that be for my kids. But also something I've done as an Amazon associate is, I get gift cards. That's my payment from them all year because I don't really make a ton from them, but it's enough over the course of the year to add up, and I don't touch them all year long. And so I know that by the time I get to Black Friday, that's when I'm going to use all those gift cards to pay for my kids.

And I think you could almost do the same thing just out of. Buy Amazon gift cards all year long. Buy one each month that you just stash away and then you know that you've been putting the money away or set aside a separate account or whatever. But I think if you, if you have that long range plan for Christmas all year long, so you don't get hit with it all in December, I think that is, [00:13:00] Imperative, especially if you're somebody who has to watch your budget.

You know, I'm a single mom of four kids. I can't, I don't have an extra thousand dollars or whatever to just throw at Christmas every year. And some of it too, like some years are harder than others and. That sucks, but it's also part of life and just being really honest with my kids about like, it's gonna be a slimmer year this year, but that's okay.

We're still gonna have fun and we're gonna do all the traditions and you're going to get gifts. You're just not going to have, you know, the tree is not going to be hidden by the gifts. You know, it's, it's gonna be a realistic year. And that just, you know, that's sometimes the way it is.

Riley: Yeah, I like the honesty. I just, just being like, Hey, this is what's going on. I also love the tip to buy gift cards the whole year, and then you're kind of like stashing away that money for yourself. Uh, the whole, the whole year. That, that's a great idea.

MacKenzie: Well, and I think like when it's a gift card, it's so specific. It's not like you just have it in your bank [00:14:00] and like, Oh, maybe you're gonna draw from it, or whatever. You really kind of forget about it. It's just, you know, it's there. Even if you buy them, like digital gift cards, whatever, they're hidden in your email until you go to look for them and then you're like, Oh, look at this.

Roni: We just had, um, somebody on the podcast from YNAB from You need a budget, and she talked a little bit about this idea where she was like, Christmas happens on the same day every year. Like everybody should be planning ahead for the money you're gonna spend at Christmas time and like, because you should be able to anticipate it and expect it, like you can expect it in January because it happens on the same day,

So I like that. I think that's a good, good reminder. Maybe that's

a reminder for next year, because we're almost there. But you know

MacKenzie: Yeah. But even for, um, like Christmas decor, if there's stuff that you just, you're not able to get right now, or you know, you want for next year, the day after Christmas, it's all gonna be on clearance. You know, like it's a bummer for this year. But to set yourself up for next year, I like to think of [00:15:00] some of those things as like giving myself a future gift where I'm not gonna really benefit from it right now, but dang.

Next year, I'm gonna be so thrilled with myself when I open up all my Christmas boxes and I'm like, Look what we got. This is awesome. You know? So sometimes it's that delayed gratification, but it's so exciting when it works out.

Riley: Yeah, that's great. I, that is, you have made you think of two things. One is that when my husband and I got engaged, we got engaged a couple of days after Christmas and we went, we went to the store for something and I saw all these Christmas lights on sale for like 50 cents a box.

MacKenzie: Yeah,

Riley: And I at the time, really thought we were gonna use all these Christmas lights.

In our wedding decor. We bought 25 or 30 boxes of 50 cent Christmas lights. We did not use them for the wedding. Um, it's fine, but I have, like, I still have Christmas lights that I've either, I'm given 'em away every year or I'm pulling 'em out and I'm like, Oh, we can put these somewhere because I [00:16:00] have so many of them.

Um, so, but it's a great idea to stock up after Christmas, especially if, if budget is a big thing, man stuff after Christmas is like 75% off, if not more

So. 

MacKenzie: Total clearance, everything that was above and beyond what they planned for. You know, Just go in and. And make bank

Riley: Yeah, absolutely. The other thing I was thinking is that if you shop too early, you can maybe accumulate too many things. You know, if you're shopping the whole, if you're shopping the whole year and. I kind of did that this year for, I have a two and a half year old and I started shopping a little early cuz I saw something she would love, but she didn't need a gift on a random Thursday.

So I was like, I'm gonna stash this away. And then I told my husband, I think we're done. I think I've got all the things that, you know, like I wanted to get her. And then I showed it all to him and I was like, Oh, this is a little more than I was thinking because we tried it. It's fine. We're gonna, we're gonna make it work, but , and then also kids can come up with new ideas for things that they really, really want.

If you don't kind of wait until closer because kids are changing so [00:17:00] fast. Yeah.

MacKenzie: Yeah, I was gonna say that is, especially when they're younger, their interests can change so quickly. And so you may think that like you've got it all under control in Prime day in July, and then by November they've been to school and their friend has such and such and their interests have completely changed.

And so I'm, I, especially with the younger ones, I feel like I'm always a little like, Ooh, what are, what are you actually gonna want? But like with my seven year old, Something she doesn't even think about, I don't think she would necessarily ask me for, but I catch her. On a daily basis pretending to do YouTube like style and makeup videos in the bathroom.

Like when she's getting ready in the morning, she is literally like verbally narrating everything that she's doing as though she's on YouTube. So I'm gonna brush my teeth, guys, and this is the toothpaste that I use and like I. She, she's, she's [00:18:00] actually incredibly good at it. Like if I had the time to start her YouTube channel, we could probably be millionaires by now, but she's hilarious.

But she would, I like actually like, like a little, like, I'm not gonna go buy her like the. Poly pocket makeup kit or whatever, cuz I don't necessarily want her putting that on her face, but getting her like a couple of really good little lip gloss and, you know, stuff that she's not gonna wear outside the house.

But I know she's gonna have a blast with in the house, like pretending to do these makeup videos. She will eat that up and be all over it. Even if I could get her like some cheap little camera or you know, something like, That's gonna be her jam, but she just doesn't know it. , but she's not gonna ask for that.

But I see what she's doing. I hear her doing it, and I know that she would love it. So it's that, you know, paying attention, seeing how their interests are, seeing how their interests change and, and capitalizing on it.

Roni: Right. [00:19:00] So I feel like everybody has at least one person in their life that they're like, I have no idea what to get this person. How do you solve that? Assuming you have that problem, how do you solve that problem?

MacKenzie: Yeah. Well, again, it's the, the listening is part of it because even when you don't, like, even when they're per the person who seems like they have everything or you know, whatever. Usually if you're paying attention, they're gonna say something at some point. My boyfriend is really hard to buy for last year, months before Christmas, he mentioned like, Oh, I really love this cup I have, but I knew like he would love having another one, so I got another one.

You know, it's like just paying attention to stuff. But honestly, at that point, it's back to the gift guides, I think. Following influencers who have similar interests to you or have similar interests to your mother-in-law or whoever it is, and paying attention to those things, they, they're good at what they do.

They like living with. Landon [00:20:00] is amazing at gift giving and she puts out amazing gift guides where she's going to give you ideas for that person. Doesn't, you know, you don't know what to buy for them. She's got great ideas for guys who are notoriously hard to buy for and those, you know, peripheral people like in-laws and you know, babysitters and whatever.

She's always got amazing ideas. So I'm gonna follow, and I'm probably gonna buy that. Thing, and there's nothing wrong with that. I think that we get in the season and we think like, Oh, I need to, it needs to all come from me. I need to come up with the ideas. I need to reinvent the wheel and like have it be all personal and whatever.

It doesn't, that's like a very specific skillset, I think to be able to just like hop on the worldwide web with all of the millions of things that are out there and figure out what people like, like that's a daunting prospect. So it's helpful when you actually just listen to people who [00:21:00] have great ideas and are really good at figuring that out.

Okay. You say, Buy this, I'm gonna buy this. And if they don't like it, whatever I tried. But you know, like, I think not putting so much pressure on ourselves to have it be the most magical, amazing thing that they've ever received.

Riley: That's a really great idea. Uh, my family does, we all draw names. I have three siblings and then there's all sorts of nieces and nephews. Um, the kids, we kind of just leave and everybody can kind of get for the kids as they want to. But the adults, we all draw names. So you only have one adult, other adult to buy for.

And sometimes that can be really difficult, because I don't spend day to day with some of my siblings, uh, cuz they all, we all live all over. Um, and so a gift guide's a really great idea for that. My older brother said that if we ever resorted to just getting each other gift cards, we're gonna quit because it just

MacKenzie: like what's the point? We're just exchanging money at this point.

Riley: Exactly. Yeah. Here's $50 to Amazon. Get what you wanna [00:22:00] get. Um, yeah, so we, that's a really good idea for situations like that because I can really struggle sometimes to feel like I wanna get 'em the perfect thing. I should have had all year to think about it. And, but I'm not spending day to day with them, so I'm not getting so much of that listening experience of just like, they randomly said, Oh, I really need this thing.

Uh, and I, I don't get to hear that. So that's 

MacKenzie: Well, and you're probably not drawing the name until closer to Christmas anyway, so you don't even really know who you need to pay more attention to, to figure out what in the world to buy them. But I think that leave the personal gifts to their spouse or you know, somebody who is around them get something that's just like fun and useful.

Most guys will probably like, I mean, you probably have enough knowledge of him to not get something he's gonna completely hate, you know? But it doesn't have to be the most glorious, perfect gift. And I think that probably when you're receiving a gift from [00:23:00] one of the random people on the list, like you're probably not expecting it to be the most perfect thing that you've been, you know, wanting and looking for all year long either.

And so I think it's helpful to sometimes reverse that and keep that in mind too, like, what am I expect?

Riley: totally, Yeah, I, It's funny because I think. I, I do feel like my family is, they really try to be really intentional. Um, and so sometimes those gifts are really funny because you open 'em and you're like, This is what they thought that I would love. Like, it's, it's either, you know, and I, it's always appreciated.

It's always like, they really tried, they cared a lot to try to get me something that I would love. Um, but it is funny to sometimes think like, Oh, this is what they thought. Like they, this is what they landed on

MacKenzie: I think that it can be helpful to like know people's Enneagram numbers too, when you're gift giving because there are certain things that certain personalities are just going to be more prone to. I'm gonna admit something that could be very embarrassing, but I am a three. [00:24:00] I like my aesthetic to be a certain way, and so if a grandparent helps a child make a yearly calendar with their artwork, that is supposed to be prominently displayed in my. It will not be. It will not be. I will appreciate the sentiment. I love the idea it is going to be looked at and put away. I am not that person who wants that. I don't want whatever you are crocheting for me. I, you know, like, and if I'm just, if I'm being honest, if you want to know the honest truth and that is my personality.

Some people would see that and love that. You could give that to A two, and they are going to put it in their front entry way and wear the sweater that you knit them and you know, like love it to death. Know who you're buying for. . Don't like my mom, she just got this plant for her birthday from the people at her work.

She wears all neutral color. [00:25:00] All the time. Her house is completely neutral. They bought her a plant with like this big, bright pattern on the pot and like. I was like, But do, do they just like, if they just look at you , if they just look at you, they would probably know that's not your jam. And she was like, But it's their jam.

And so I think that's an important thing to remember is a lot of times we almost buy for ourselves and give it to another person, but. That's not necessarily their style, what they want. You have to take yourself out of yourself and think about them, and just if you just look at basic context clues, like the kinds of things they wear, you can probably start being steered in the right direction of what they're gonna like and what they're not going to like.

Roni: There's a big difference between, uh, what you think is a good gift and what something somebody's actually interested in. Right?

MacKenzie: Yes.

Riley: I try to save my, I really loved this and. That everyone should have it in their life to gifts.[00:26:00] 

MacKenzie: Yeah.

Riley: a hyphenated sentence. Um, , uh, for stocking stuffers. Um, this is so random, but I love the, um, Makeup eraser wipes. And so like, I got hooked on 'em last year, right before Christmas and I was like, I'm gonna buy these for everybody and just stick one in everyone's stock.

I was like, they may hate it, but it was a like a, it wasn't like the whole gift, you know, was like, Here's a gift basket of all my favorite essentials, like that I love, so therefore you should love them. So I just tried to like get one little thing that I was like, I love this thing and I'm kind of obsessed with it right now, so I'm gonna give it to everybody.

Just one rolled up and they're stocking

MacKenzie: Well, and I think if you even frame it that way, I mean, we have Oprah to thank for my favorite things. You know, like we can even tell people. I'm giving you these things that are my favorite things that I think that you might enjoy too, but really they're my favorite things. Like you can go ahead and say that, but like you're saying, not making it the whole gift.

Riley: [00:27:00] Yeah. Do you have any children or loved ones that have a birthday right around Christmas?

MacKenzie: I, Well, I have a daughter who has a January birthday and I grew up with my brother having a January birthday, and then two of the kids in my life have like fall or right before Christmas birthdays. So luckily all the other ones are far away from Christmas. But yeah, it's a tricky one, I think for sure.

And I think as much as. Hate it. I mean, maybe as they get older you can lump them together a little bit more if they want those bigger presents, you can kind of justify it that way. But I think as much as possible, separating out the dates is really important. Cause nobody wants their birthday just glossed over.

Riley: Yeah, I agree. That resonates with me because my birthday is about a week after Thanksgiving, so then about 20 ish days before Christmas, and my husband's birthday is 20 [00:28:00] ish days after Christmas. . And so it is just like festivity upon festivity upon festivity. And so my husband and I have decided that for Christmas, we just do stockings for each other and like we set a price point on them and you can't go over it.

Though we have had to increase the budget because inflation, um, um, when we were dating it was $50. And you could get so many things for $50. But you had to get really creative. You know, some of it had to be experiences that you kinda, um, but we've had to increase the budget a little bit, but we like to do bigger birthday to try to like celebrate the person individually and then just kind of try to keep Christmas, Christmas or, you know, whatever holiday other people are celebrating.

Like if you're trying to figure out what you should do. Focus on this at this time and the focus on that at that time, . But it can be really tricky, um, to, to juggle all that and all the spend too, because it does start to add up a lot. Cuz it's a lot of, lot of, a lot of gift buying, you know, a lot of things.

MacKenzie: Yeah, and it, you can [00:29:00] also feel like, what I just used up, all of my ideas, for you for Christmas or for your birthday. Like what in the world do I get you? So it's like you have to pay extra attention. So if that person's wanting, because my kids who have birthdays six months later. It's again, like their interests could have changed.

There's like a whole new variety of things that they could want, but when it's all in that one lump period of time, you really kind of have to get even more creative about what they might be interested in that's going to last and. You know, they're gonna like, and I think it has helped the years that we've done more of an experience, like I almost give my daughter in January more of a birthday party or like really kind of capitalizing on that because it's not like we don't have, I don't have more to give her, so let's have more of an experience for the party and you know, trying to kind of have those kinds of experiences.

Riley: And those are special memories that last, you know, like the things that you're into [00:30:00] when you're seven, uh, are not gonna be as impactful to you when you're 27, you know, and you're like thinking back on that awesome birthday party that your mom threw you, or that place she took you for your birthday. Like, so it, it's important to remember that, that that is like something that's a really special gift too.

Like it, even if it feels like this exchange of like, well, we can't. Can't spend more. I mean, dude, we're all trying to save money right now. Like I can't spend more, but we can do this. Like, that's a really special gift too. So it's not like, it's not like one is better than the other at.

MacKenzie: Yeah. And, and letting, even if you do get them like tickets to something, to go see a show or to go, you know, whatever, that it may not be on their birthday that they get the experience. I mean, I remember I was six when my mom got me new kids on the block tickets. For Christmas with my cousins and they like made these big tickets and they gave us the tickets on Christmas.

We were going to that concert for like six more months, you know, But it still, it was like the [00:31:00] anticipation and it's okay if it doesn't happen on that day. If you're giving them, you know, an experience that's going to happen later on. That's totally legit.

Riley: Yeah.

Roni: Well, I also think that making a little bit bigger deal of a winter birthday is nice anyways. There's not as many things to look forward to in the wintertime, right? Like there's like the, all the big holidays that everybody looks forward to are already done, and we're all just like waiting for winter to be over.

So you might as well throw a blowout so that everybody has something to have that's fun.

MacKenzie: For sure, and if you're lucky, this is the only time I will say this about snow. If you're lucky, there's snow and so you can like have a sledding party or whatever. It doesn't even necessarily like have to be in your house the whole time, which is

Roni: Mm-hmm.

Riley: Do you have any other tips around gift giving that you'd like to share with us?

MacKenzie: That probably covers my extensive knowledge of gift giving. Ignore the young ones. Pay attention to the older ones. Don't be [00:32:00] afraid to give them gift cards, but I totally support the not exchanging gift cards with other adult family members.

Roni: I do have one more question. What do you do with your, what do you do at your girlfriends? Do you, um, you know, cuz like some people actually get gifts, you know, for their friends. Other people are like, we're just all gonna go out to brunch together and it's gonna be like a celebration. What's, what's your take on that?

MacKenzie: I think that my girlfriends and I, we usually try to focus more on our birthdays and they are really sweet because there's been so many years where I haven. Had someone doing anything for my birthday. So they've really like, always made sure that I feel special with my birthday. But I think we focus more on the birthdays.

If we do anything for each other at Christmas time, it's like baked goods or you know, homemade candy or you know, popcorn balls or whatever. Like, stuff like that. But we, we all have a lot of children, and so the thought of like trying to have more people to buy for, we just, we don't. Do that, but we do definitely focus on all of our [00:33:00] birthdays and making sure we go out and do brunch or do whatever for each of us for that.

Riley: That's great. That's a great idea.

MacKenzie: Yeah. And plus we're we, because I think also we have so many kids, like we're so busy at the 

Roni: You're right. 

MacKenzie: we are lucky to be able to see each other at all. So

Riley: Yeah.

Roni: Yeah, you just hope y'all get invited to the same Christmas party or

MacKenzie: Yeah. That someone else is

Roni: Yeah. 

Yeah.

Riley: Usually with a, with a lot of my close friends, sometimes I'll just say like, Hey, what are we doing Are you getting me a gift? Am I getting you, Are we doing this? Could we do something else? Could we like, focus our efforts here? So that we're all on the same page about it? And nobody feels like, um, oh no.

Like they've overdone this. Think not overdone, but like, they have gone above and beyond to love me in this way, and I feel like I wanna reciprocate it. You know, like I, I feel like it's kind of like good to have a conversation and be like, Here's what we're gonna do. Let's focus on birthdays, or let's go to have a fun girls night dinner kind of thing.

Um, and kind of just, everybody kind of have the same like idea we're [00:34:00] on the same page about what we're doing.

Roni: Mm. I.

MacKenzie: the truth is, again, like if you start thinking from the opposite perspective, if you're having these thoughts, a lot of them are probably having the same thoughts too. So if you just go ahead and be the one to spearhead the conversation, there's probably gonna be relief across the board of everyone like, Oh, I'm so glad somebody spoke up and said something.

Roni: All right, Mackenzie, why don't you remind everybody where they can find you, remind them about your podcast and just like tell us of anything that you have going on right now that you want people to be aware.

MacKenzie: Okay, well if you haven't picked up by now, I'm Mackenzie Koppa and I am the podcaster behind LiveWell. Anyway, I'm also finally, I think I announced this on your podcast like forever ago. But I really am starting to do more on my YouTube channel, so you can find me at Mackenzie Koppa over there as well. And because I love planning and I love New Year, it's really my jam.

Throughout the month of December, I'm gonna be doing some webinars and stuff about planning for New Year and [00:35:00] getting on top of that. I'm gonna have a one week, um, bootcamp the first week of January that's going to be, Doing all the planning, getting ready, doing the goal setting, all that kind of thing.

And then that's gonna move into like a longer course. That's like if you really feel overwhelmed by your life and you need to get everything together, you need to hone in your calendar, figure out what's happening with your time, make sure you're taking care of yourself. Then we're gonna be doing all of that in the first couple of months, um, of the new year.

And so I would love to have people come over and join me and really get their planning on with me.

Riley: If that wasn't. Enough, me and Ronnie love MacKenzie 

Roni: we do 

Riley: and so she is a planning expert. Like go and take all of her classes, follow her, do everything she says, and you'll get more organized.

MacKenzie: and plan to eat is usually always involved in what we're doing because I can't help myself. So it's always like part of that overall like life planning stuff that I talk about. So

Riley: we love it.

Roni: Yeah. Thanks for joining us today, Mackenzie. We

MacKenzie: Thank you for [00:36:00] having me. It was so fun. I. 

Roni: Well, that was so great to talk to Mackenzie. She is just one of our favorite people. I, She has such great energy. I love her so much.

Riley: And she has great tips because they're just real. They're just real life, real mom. Um, real budget, like just real person gift tips. Um, yeah, I, I really enjoyed our conversation with her. She's just so. Wonderful.

Roni: So we wanted to spend the second half of this podcast talking a little bit about the gift guide that we put together. It's not a super long gift guide, but like Riley said in the beginning, we were really intentional with the things that we put on this list because, um, we wanted to put things that we love and that we hope, that you all will love as well.

Uh, before we get into that, I personally wanted talk a little bit about thoughtful gift giving, because I think it's really easy. We talked a little bit about this with Mackenzie. It's really easy to just give somebody a gift. You feel obligated to, Right? And like maybe you give somebody a gift that you think is a great gift, [00:37:00] but it's not necessarily like what that person would like.

And my opinion on the, on this is just that a small, inexpensive gift that's thoughtful is way better than something that you spent a lot of money on just because you felt obligated to give somebody a present. Right.

Riley: Oh yeah, absolutely. And I think that the holidays, they do put that pressure on us to, to, like, this is when I buy people gifts, period. One of the things that I really enjoyed about our conversation with McKenzie was her suggesting that with your girlfriends, you get on the same page about it. We had that little bit of a conversation towards the end, um, where like, you don't have to give a gift to them.

Like you could just be intentional to like, have dinner or brunch or go do something fun together, Shoot, go get a pedicure. You know, like, um, it doesn't have to be a purchasing a gift. It could just be time. And I know as a busy adult that like carving out time for my. It really intentionally is sometimes just as much of a gift, as a gift. And so that, that intentionality around just having that conversation of [00:38:00] like, Hey, what could we do to just like, enjoy each other this season, is a great idea.

Roni: Yeah. Well, she also mentioned it a little bit with her kids of talking about like experiences, you know, and talking about how she, in January, she does like a kind of a blowout birthday party for her daughter and. . I love that too, because I can't, I mean, I can maybe tell you like two gifts that I got as a kid.

Like I don't remember the things that I got, but there are so many birthday parties that were awesome that I totally remember, you know? And so I just feel there is that aspect of, you know, um, if you're stuck on what, to get somebody as a gift, like an experience, so sometimes even better because it creates a memory and if it's an experience you can do together, like that's a memory that somebody that you'll be able to have, you know, with your best friend for the rest of your.

Riley: Yeah. Well, and another, kinda along the same lines, she talked about knowing that person. They're an Enneagram number and what might resonate with them. Um, I think the love language is another one to lean into [00:39:00] because while giving gifts might be someone's love language, getting gifts might not be yours.

And so while you can super appreciate the thoughtfulness that someone went into because they were showing you love and the way that they show it, another person's is, could be quality time and kind of having that intentionality of like, okay, I love giving gifts, so I'm gonna give them this, this experience because their love language is.

Quality time, and that's what I'm giving them is the time. Um, so just kind of leaning into just that, knowing people and paying attention and thinking like, why can't come up with a gift for Roni? Well, that's because Roni would actually really like this. She doesn't want a gift. She wants this thing.

Um, just to use you as an example. So I really love that.

Roni: Yeah. Well, yeah, I mean it's just, it's those things of like, how does this person spend their free time? Like what's their sense of humor? There's this really great, there's this really great soap and sand, uh, soap, and. A candle company called Whiskey River, and they have soap and candles that all have [00:40:00] these like silly sayings that are like kind of irreverent and funny on them.

And it's just one of those things, like if you have a friend who has kind of an irreverent sense of humor, just buy them a bar of soap that like, has something funny on it, you know? Um, it doesn't have to be, like I said, it doesn't have to be like big or expensive or whatever. I think that just the fact of like a little bit of thought put into a gift like means a lot to anybody.

Riley: Totally. Yeah. Um, so that actually leads me to what are the things that you got as a kid that you still think about or the experiences that you got as a kid that you still think about?

Roni: Okay. Well, so I, I can't remember very many Christmas presents that I got, but I can remember some birthday presents. And the reason I remember these birthday presents is because my mom and dad were amazing, and every year from, I don't know, probably like three to five years, like part of our birthday was that they would set up a scavenger hunt throughout our house that we had to like, Go and find different clues before we finally got to the place where our [00:41:00] present was hidden.

And it was usually like if we had a bigger present, that like they didn't wanna wrap, you know, like you got a bike or something. Um, and they didn't wanna wrap. The presents were pretty much always hidden in the bathtub. Fyi.

Riley: So for all the kids listening, if your parents have sent you on a scavenger hunt, look in the bathroom.

Roni: Um, but it, but it was so much fun and I remem like, I remember one year getting a bike and I remember it being like the bike was in the bathtub and, but it was part, but it was because the experience of getting that bike was so fun. And I feel like that's the reason why I remember it. The only other thing I can think of is when I was.

Already like a preteen, like I think I was 11 or something. Um, we had a swimming pool birthday party, and one of my, like, my brothers were allowed to like invite one of their best friends to the party. And my brother's best friend bought me a Barbie doll because he didn't know like what a, a young girl would want.

And I was like, quite a bit past Barbie, [00:42:00] do age. And so I just remember that because I was like, Hmm, this is great.

Riley: He tried though.

Roni: He tried. It was so in, in hindsight, it's so sweet. But at the time I was like, Dude, I'm 11 years old. I don't play with dolls,

Riley: putting yourself in someone else's shoes is a lot easier when you're older. Like, like, Oh, he was so thoughtful. Like you hated it, but it was so thoughtful.

Roni: totally.

Riley: that's awesome.

Roni: Yeah. Do you have any gifts you remember?

Riley: Well, it, the, the thing that came to mind when you first said this a few minutes ago, um, I was probably six years old and my mom bought me a planner and it had this like, It had one of those like covers at like Snap and I think it had like pockets in it and I knew she had gotten it for me or, or maybe I had found it.

I don't remember the whole story with it. But I was so stinking excited about this planner. And if that tells you anything about my [00:43:00] personality, it should, um, because that was me when I was maybe five or six. And still me now. I mean, we were just talking the other day about shopping for planners and it was mid-October.

So or 2023. Too funny. Okay. I do remember though, that I had this awesome princess birthday party and my mom made me this castle cake. And I just remember thinking that that was like the coolest thing ever. Like she made it with like the upside down, uh, ice cream cones as like the peaks of the castle.

And it was all blue. It kinda looked like Cinderella's castle and I don't know, I remember just that being like the coolest experience, like this huge castle cake that my mom had made.

Roni: Oh wow. Your mom sounds like she went above and beyond. 

Riley: Planners and castle cakes.

Thanks mom.

Roni: cakes. 

Riley: But it goes to show you like what sticks with you versus, you know, like the stuff that doesn't.

Roni: I'm really glad that this castle cake sticks in your memory, cuz I'm sure that was a lot of work for your mom. [00:44:00] So,

Riley: if I made a castle cake for my daughter, it would look like a Pinterest fail. It would, it would. I couldn't do it. So, Thanks, Mom. If you're listening, that was a really cool cake. Thanks for working hard on it.

Roni: Okay. Let's talk about our gift guide. All right, so we, Yeah, we sectioned our gift guide out into different sections just so you could kind of. Have a guide of the guide. Right. Uh, so the first section is kid related items. First thing on the list is the Tovla Junior Kids Cooking and Baking Set. If you remember podcast, episode 34 was with Tova Levine, who is the creator of Tovla Junior. And we just think that she's awesome. Her baking and cooking sets for kids are ingenious, and I feel like there was no way we couldn't include this on our gift guide.

Riley: Yeah, her, all of her items are. Kids safe, kids [00:45:00] size and cute . And so if you have a child that's interested in getting in the kitchen or if you're trying to encourage your kids to get in the kitchen, this gift set is a great idea. and it's really makes baking and cooking for kids more accessible because the items are one, you can feel like safe giving your kid a little kid knife.

But also they're, they're sized for their hands so they're not having to deal with something that's for an adult, um, that doesn't really fit.

Roni: The other two things in our kids section are a kids in the kitchen cookbook. So if you have a kid who's interested in cooking, this has some great recipes that are kid friendly. And then the final thing is a kid's apron. Cause if you're gonna get the kid's baking set and you're gonna get the cookbook, well you gotta have a cute apron to go along with it, right?

Riley: And what kid doesn't get incredibly messy in the kitchen. So it's a really great, uh, for just saving some clothes, washing . But I do think a kid's apron is a really fun idea. Uh, I, we have friends who have aprons for their kids at their houses, [00:46:00] and my daughter always gets so excited to put it on. It's like this new, it's like dress up, you know?

It's kind of that same idea. Um, If your kids loving cooking or if you see them like enjoying this at someone else's house, it's a great idea for your kid.

Our next section is cookbooks. Oh, we love cookbooks.

Roni: we do love cookbook. 

Riley: So the first one is probably the one I'm, well, I'm excited about multiple on this list, but the first one, I'm really excited about because we know her. Debbie Brossman, the Effortless Kitchen Cookbook. It just released a few weeks ago. the, the cookbook looks awesome. I have one at my house already.

She worked so, so hard to make this Cook Cookbook accessible. The steps are easy and clear, um, and the recipes just, I can't wait to make everything. So many pasta, so many meatballs, so many things that look delicious.

Roni: We talked to Debbie on episode 37 of the podcast, all about this cookbook, and there's a section that called, that's called Meatballs from Around the World [00:47:00] that sold me on the cookbook the instant that she said that, you know, like, Man, I can't wait to try all the different flavors. So

Riley: we, we could talk about, Yeah. Yeah, we could talk about Debbie forever. Uh, one thing I will add about this cookbook that's really special, um, and it's actually special about the next one, is just this, uh, the options that she gives. So if you are cooking for someone who's gluten-free or dairy-free or vegetarian, she provides options in every recipe or a lot of the recipes so you can easily make those modifications and still make an amazing dish for all the people in your.

Roni: Yeah. Yeah. So the next one on the list is the New York Times Cooking, No Recipe Recipes. And once again, we talked about this on the podcast, episode 33, Riley gave us a review of this cookbook. So if you're curious about what this cookbook's all about, go listen to that episode. It's only about 30 minutes.

Riley gives you a little low down on how you can, how there can be a cookbook that's actually not a cookbook of recipes.

Riley: Yep. [00:48:00] Yeah, it's uh, it's an awesome cookbook. Everything in the rest of everything in there. Looks and is delicious. Everything I've made has been delightful. And it really is for, I would suggest it for somebody who really loves to cook and is trying to learn how to be a better no recipe cook. So how do you just take ingredients and make a meal?

It's a really great tool for like learning how to do it, but with some guidance.

Roni: Next up is the Kitchen Counter Cooking School. Erin from YNAB told us about this book a couple different times when we have talked to her. And the idea behind this book is that it's, it's teaching you to get a little bit more back to the basics of cooking. So, you know, like one of the things that she talked about was that.

There are lots of recipes nowadays that give you every little minute step of how to make that recipe, and this book is teaching you more like, what do you do for recipe? If you get like your grandma's recipe and it just says Cook the chicken, you know, it's giving you a little bit more of those applicable skills.

Really similar to this other [00:49:00] idea of the no recipe recipes. It's giving you, you know, some of these like foundational tools to become a better cook, a better home chef.

Riley: Mm-hmm. . Last but not least is the Siete Table Cookbook. Um, this is from, uh, Siete, the brand. Um, you may have stumbled upon upon their products. They have amazing almond flour tortillas, uh, dairy free queso, uh, so many products that I love. And they came out with a cookbook. I haven't, I haven't seen it yet. I haven't bought it yet, but I cannot wait for it to come out.

And we just love siete products. So we were really excited to put this cookbook on our gift.

Roni: If you read the little overview about the book, um, it says that it's all gluten free Mexican American dishes. So if you're somebody who needs gluten free recipe specifically, this will be a great recipe book for you.

Riley: Yep. Add to cart Next up we have the general section, and we have some exciting things in here. [00:50:00] One of them, including the Plan to Eat gift subscription for all the people in your life who are trying to. Uh, maybe they have a New Year's resolution of trying to become a better meal planner. Maybe they're trying to get on a budget with their groceries, um, or you just wanna share recipes with a friend and you wanna get 'em a gift subscription to like make it happen.

The Plan to Eat gift subscription is an awesome stocking stuffer or gift for a friend

Roni: We agree. I mean, I agree. 

Next on the list is Dar Chocolate Art Bars. Coming a little later this month, we have a podcast episode with Gila, who is one of the founders of Dar Chocolate. It is a local to Northern Colorado bean to Bar chocolate. We actually just got back from a tour that we did at their chocolate making facility in Northern Colorado.

Uh, we tasted some delicious chocolate and we would love for you to support them and buy some of their chocolate. You can order it online if you're not located in Northern Colorado.

Riley: [00:51:00] Delicious, delicious specialty chocolate bars. So for all those people in your life who love a good specialty chocolate bar, another. Stocking stuffer. Um, yeah, highly recommend. And their art bars are really, really neat cuz they're working with artists. If you love the packaging, you can actually buy the print with a QR code inside the packaging.

Really neat partnership. Um, so also chocolate for an artist or like somebody who really loves artwork. It's a really good crossover.

Next up, we have something just really fun, fancy sprinkles. This website, Sprinkle, pop. They have some really cute sprinkles. You can get custom sprinkles, custom like cupcake or cake toppers made, um, and just, uh, sprinkle colors and sprinkle, um, what do you call that? There's like the categories for whatever you might need sprinkles for.

Roni: Like sprinkles for a special occasion.

Riley: Yeah. Yes.

Roni: They have sprinkles that are like based off of your favorite football team.

Riley: Yeah. They have sprinkles that are like coffee cups,

Roni: Yeah. [00:52:00] So you could get fancy sprinkles for anything. I'm sure you've seen the cool, you know, cake decorating videos on Instagram and stuff. This is these, These are one of the places where they get all their cool fancy sprinkles from, and I just thought it was a really fun thing to add to the list, Particularly if you're somebody who likes to bake.

Riley: Yeah. Or this is a great gift for somebody you know, who likes to bake. Um, if you really don't know what to get them and you've bought 'em 80 spatulas in the past, like get 'em some fun sprinkles and then they can. Uh, elevate their baking game with some fancy things. This one was just a fun one and I was really excited about including that one on the list.

Roni: Yeah, I like it too. Okay, last on this list is the Plan to Eat Swag store. In the last few months, we've added a lot of really cool new designs. Um, we have a new designer that's on our team and she has been making some amazing t-shirt designs for us.

Put some on tee towels as well. Um, my favorite is my t-shirt. That's a beat that has some, that has the glasses, like Dwight from the office and we call it the Dwight. [00:53:00] It's amazing. If you guys don't know, we're really big office fans over here, and that's my favorite shirt of all time.

Riley: Yeah, everything, she's, everything we've added is awesome. Um, a great supplement to a gift subscription. If you bought one for a friend, grab him a tea towel or grab one for yourself 

Roni: all right. Next category is kitchen supplies. So the first thing on the list is a microplane grader. This is something that Des Debbie Brosnan mentioned in her very first interview on the podcast. Uh, it's one of her most favorite kitchen tools. She says it comes in handy all the time. I have one myself and I do use it quite a bit.

So go get, go get your people a microplane grader, another good stocking stuffer for somebody who likes kitchen.

Riley: Stacher bags are silicone storage bags. Um, that's the next item on our list. Personally. Love these. They are so wonderful. They're easy to clean. They are, they're perfect. You can freeze in them. You can actually microwave [00:54:00] in them. You can, put soup in them. You could put snacks in. Uh, I love stacher bags.

So they had to make it on the list because I'm a huge fan. They're fantastic. And if you're trying to get away from single use plastic sta bags is where it.

Roni: Yeah. The way, that's the way to go. Uh, my favorite is they have bags that have a little bit like flatter bottom, so you can like ladle soup into it much easier. Cuz it just will stand on top of your counter. And then, you know, you can freeze your soup and it has just a flat bottom that you can just put right in your freezer.

Very handy.

Riley: They seal really, really well too. Um, so you know, like it when you go to Dairy Queen, they flip over the blizzard and if it, if it drips out, then you get it for free or whatever. I've done that with when I put soup in a stature bag, I sealed it up and then flipped it over. Not a drop. You guys, it's they seal so, so well, they're incredible.

Great moms mom gift too, because. If you buy snacks for your kids, like in a bigger, like bulk kind of way, um, you [00:55:00] can portion out snacks into these bags and you don't get that weird plastic taste because these are made outta silicone. And then they're washable and reusable, so you're not going through a gazillion bags

Roni: Mm-hmm. All right. The next thing on the list is the USA Pan baking sheets. Now, Stacher bags is Riley's favorite thing on the list. This is my favorite thing on the list. Uh, this was, this was my addition because I bought these baking sheets last year and they're the best baking sheets I've ever used.

That's basically all I have to say about it is they're the best baking sheets I've ever used, and I think you should buy them.

Riley: Both of us, the SA fragment and this one, we both have big recommendations

on these 

Roni: Big recommendations on these ones.

Riley: Yeah. Uh, next up is nesting bowls. Um, personally I love nesting bowls because they go into your cabinet and store so well. They stack up all inside of each other. I'm sure that you guys know what a nesting bowl is.

We have linked to some really beautiful ones from Williams Sonoma. Um, so yeah, another great gift if you're looking for something for somebody. Also a great housewarming gift

Roni: [00:56:00] Absolutely. Yeah, I was, I was thinking it would be a great gift for, you know, similar to housewarming or you know, maybe have like a college kid or something that, you know, they're gonna have a small space in their kitchen, but they need to have mixing bowls still. So you should get the ones that are the nesting ones so that they can have other room in their cabinets that aren't just taken up by all of their mixing bowls.

Riley: And who doesn't always need a different size of mixing? Like you always need a little one for something and then a really big one for something else. And I mean, at our house I actually use 'em for serving too. So if you get some really beautiful ones, they're great for serving side dishes in also.

Roni: All right. The always pan from our place. This is a pan that I came across I think maybe last year. And it's amazing. So similar to, honestly, similar to nesting bowls where you have one thing that you know doesn't take up very much space. The always pan replaces eight different kitchen utensils. It can be a frying pan, a saute pan, a steamer, a skillet, a saucer, a sauce pan, a nonstick [00:57:00] pan, a spatula, and a spoon rest.

It has all of the. One pan does all of the things. Um, they're also really beautiful. They're kind of this, what you call it, like matte, the finish on it is matte. So instead of like an enamel pan that's like really bright and shiny, it's like the matte color instead. Very beautiful.

Comes in lots of different pretty colors and um, yeah, I'm just in love with it. I think it's really.

Riley: Another great gift for somebody who maybe lives in a small apartment or who is moving to college or something along those lines. It's a do it all kind of pan. Um, so it, it really is a great pan for small spaces. Um, and they're also just beautiful. So next up on our list is personalized spatula. This was my addition to the list.

I just think it's fun. I love spatulas, . Um, we found a cute shop on Etsy called Avadir and Co. Um, you can give them customized to whatever you would like them to say, uh, which, you know, anytime a gift is personalized, it just [00:58:00] makes it that much more special. So you could. You know, put inside jokes on them so every time somebody's using it, they're laughing or it's bringing them joy in some way.

Last year I got my niece a spatula that said Star baker, like from the great British bakeoff. And yeah, so I was thinking, that if I had known about the shop, I could have customized one that said something like that for her. Um, thankfully I was able to find it in a store, but this is another great way to just kind of speak to someone's, uh, preferences and things they.

Roni: All right. Last thing on our list is a ceramic olive oil dispenser. And this is kind of a random gift. I understand that. We honestly kind of got down the rabbit trail of what cool kitchen items are on Etsy, and I just think these. Olive oil dispensers are so beautiful. I currently just have olive oil that sits in the jars or in the bottle still in my kitchen, and I feel like I really need one of these pretty ones that it would just kinda like elevate the [00:59:00] way that my kitchen looks to not just have a generic bottle sitting in the kitchen.

I think they're so pretty. If you know somebody who has a really particular aesthetic, you could find something that matches what their current kitchen aesthetic is. I also think just in general, Etsy is a great place to go. If you know somebody who likes handmade ceramic items, Etsy is the best place for that.

They have such beautiful mugs and bowls and, you know, different flower bases. I could, I could spend way too much money buying those things.

Riley: Yes, me too. I am always drawn to ceramic anything hand. Anything. Handmade pots, handmade mugs, handmade olive oil dispensers. This is one that's actually on my Christmas list, cuz I think they're so beautiful. And they're really unique too. They're not just like your tall and skinny bottle. When you guys take a look at our gift card, you'll gift guide.

You'll see they're like these kind of squatty little short little pots. Oh, so cute. In someone's kitchen, hopefully in mine. Um, and yeah, like Roni said, Etsy's a great place to [01:00:00] find really specialty gifts. Um, if you're looking for really unique gift for somebody. Yeah, we hope that you love something on this list and support a cute little seller on Etsy.

Roni: So one of our goals with this gift guide was to have gifts that were unique, but also budget friendly. We personally like a lot of the items on this list. And as you heard earlier, a lot of the items were recommended to us from previous podcast episodes. So we're going to link to the gift guide. And the show notes. You can also find it over at the plan to Eat blog. 

You can also find links to Mackenzie, her website, her podcast, all of those things in the show notes. And she is going to be putting out her own gift guide in the next week or so. So make sure you go check that out. If you are still in need. I have some holiday gift inspiration

Riley: and a quick note about everything on our gift guide, other than the plant to eat items, these are not affiliate links, so we are not, we're not making any money from this. We just hope that you find some awesome [01:01:00] gifts for the people that you love.

Roni: Thanks for listening. Once again, check the show notes for all of the links to things that we mentioned today, and we will see you guys in an upcoming episode.