Happy Joyful December! The holidays are officially in full swing, and of course I am still shopping for my friends and family, unlike some of you who were done in July (no, seriously, these people really do exist!). And can you believe it, I actually have stuck something out long enough to have a 2nd Annual of it, pop the sparkling cider, woopwoop! My tiny world celebration aside, gift giving is something I take very seriously. I absolutely adore showering friends and family with random present nuggets throughout the year, but really do try to step out of my gift card zone and give something extra-special at the holidays.
There is also a bit of different gifting etiquette for people in recovery, if you’ve attended any sort of family day/weekend you already know what I am talking about! But for those of you who missed last year’s gift guide with some tips for gifting your loved ones in recovery, you can take a peek here, and without further adieu I present the 2016 Recovery Gift Guide (it’s the 2nd Annual one, did I mention that?!). Please remember, gifting for yourself as you’re shopping for others is highly encouraged, and has been shown to decrease stress and improve overall happiness during the holidays. I absolutely made those stats up, enjoy!
* I follow all of these small businesses on Instagram because I think they have great products and personal stories, however I am NOT getting any sort of kick back from their being featured; the books are just some personal favorites that have shone some good light for me.
A Little of This, a Little of That
This category is made up of a few online stores that carry a variety of items from rhinestone medallions to tees and everything in between. You can really find anything for anyone on these sites, and probably a lot of stuff for yourself as well #guilty.
Mindful Gifts carries a lovely collection of items inspired by the beauty and tranquility of the Buddhist religion. Anyone who is heavily meditated will appreciate the simple designs, soft colors, and flow of the clothing, jewelry, and home decor. They also have some great bowls, meditation seats, and statues to complete any Zen Den. Their book selection is focused on the awesome, life-changing art of being present from some of the masters themselves.
Aster Market offers delightful pre-made gift boxes as well as the ability to “curate a custom box” of your own theme. I’d actually like to create a box for myself with all the ala carte items! They are way my style with vintage-inspired designs, lots of gold, beauty products, and a few sweet treats. It’s not all girly and flowery, however there are a handful of items that could make a more masculine or less pink creation. They make it look all pretty too, bonus, you don’t have to!
The Latest Thing you’ll be greeted on this page by brilliantly colored rhinestone encrusted medallions, yes I spent 20 minutes perusing the medallions alone, along with tons of categories filled with recovery-themed goodness. God boxes, and books, and mugs-oh my! Seriously, give yourself at least an hour to peruse this fun store. This one is definitely a one-stop recovery gift shop you can patron (legally) in only your underwear!
All That Glitters
Clearly, this needed to be a category on a gift guide created by your truly, but don’t fret, I do attend SA meetings regularly for my addiction. These shops offer pretty much anything for the sparkle lover in your life.
The Crystal Fairies is pure magic. I could scroll through their stones all day, I also love their manicures, but I digress! Many people believe in the powerful properties associated with stones and crystals and use them for protection, to attract desires, health, and so forth. I admit my attraction has always been for their sheer beauty (I even grew my own crystals once), but I have become more interested in using stones in my daily life more recently. On their Instagram account they post videos of the stones so you can really see their stunning colors and textures as well as post stones up for auction that are not on their website. Plus, if you need to reach out to customer service you email The Crystal Fairy. How fun is that?! These delights are a must for the crystal fairies in your life!
Bracelets by Linda is full of super-cool, hand-stamped copper and aluminum designs including much more than bracelets alone. She creates pendants, money clips, bookmarks and more. I think my favorite item is the stamped collar stays; such a unique way to keep something special close to you without wearing jewelry. You can choose one of her pre-made pieces from her shop, or message the artist to customize. This is just one of MANY fantastic small businesses offering recovery items on Etsy, there are tons of them to browse.
Exaltation is another awesome Etsy gem chock-full of spiritual goodies! The owner does all the work herself, love her description, “Designs to uplift, express, inspire, & empower.” When you look, you’ll feel all of those feels I am pretty certain! Her designs have a very water color feel, lots of vibrant hues on stark white canvas; I am a huge fan! She creates jewelry, yoga leggings, mugs, pillows, and more. The molecule necklaces are one of the most interesting, creative items I have seen in a long time!
Get Gifts, Give Back
Shopping and giving are fun, but donating to a worthy cause with your purchases is true win-win in my book. There are a multitude of these movement-based options out there, these three just caught my attention recently so wanted to share. Love how something so simple can help so many!
The Shine Project will more than likely bring tears of humanity joy to your lovely eyes. My eyes and heart most definitely swelled reading about this spectacular non-prof’s journey and success over the past few years. I won’t share the entire story here, it’s on the site, but it was basically a single human wanting more for her fellow humans and doing something about it. What started out as seeing a need, then putting a plan into action has snowballed into a huge mound of education and opportunity for many special young people; what a movement! A selection of simple, delicate jewelry pieces all made by hand by the students, along with a few super cute tees is what you can purchase to support; the kids work in all aspects of the business from customer service to design as well. Simply phenomenal.
Link of Hearts is on a mission to connect people and let everyone suffering from mental illness know they are loved and valued. There are only 35 products in total, but the idea behind this movement is very powerful; hope. You can choose from very simple word tag jewelry, a few gem bracelets, and non-toxic candles aptly named “jars of goodness”. Your purchase will then spark the giving of an inspirational word tag piece to someone who suffers letting them know they are not alone. The story behind this movement is fantastic as well; the creator suffered, fought the good fight, then decided to pass the message of hope onto others showing once again no act is too small and that there are many like-minded people out there who want to come together for a common cause.
Little Gems USA is the spot to go if you like a little more bling with your giving back. Their pieces feature gorgeous stones in an array of hues along with a few sterling and stone pieces. 50% of your purchase will go back to a charity focusing specifically on the safety and well-being of women and children; some are U.S. based and some are in other countries, and all are worthy causes (they break down the donations for you in their “How it Works” section). Total side note, shop now because they have a crazy killer sale on!
Recover Out Loud
“Terminally Unique Apparel is a graphic tee-shirt purveyor, dedicated to the idea that humor is essential in recovery! Based in Southern California, run by a handful of nuts, we invite you to join our less-than-glum lot!” I couldn’t have said it any better or with more wit, so why reinvent the wheel! I discovered this company via Instagram and have lost track of the amount of times I have tagged Chad on one of their new designs. These cheeky tees are for your recoveree who is not afraid to let his/her AA/NA flag fly, also who is more than likely a pretty fantastic smart ass. I appreciate the creativity and humor behind the designs, additionally that they keep their designs black/white without 500 options to confuse my brain.
New Lyfe Clothing Co. also offers tops for your favorite recoveree, some of these could also go for any type of recovery (Fear is a Liar had my attention) not exclusive to AA/NA. They have graphic design with pops of bright color, and some celebrity influence on a few (the plays on Bill W. cracked me up and pretty sure I needs that Jackie O. one!), also the more simple black/white statement tees. Also be sure to scoll down on the Home Page where they feature people in recovery making a difference in the world. Read their stories, get inspired, go forth and do good. #winning.
Colello Creations (Artist Jacqueline Colello) are brilliantly colored, super unique, and created on sheer, raw talent. Jacqueline Colello “smeared” and “bejeweled” her first piece a mere three years ago, without even realizing her buried artistic talent until she was gifted with sobriety. I love, love her story, even more the glorious works she creates. The exaggerated characters and images are just so damn cool, lol, I am clearly not an art critic so I can’t put into words what I am trying to express! Take a read of her blog as well, it’s cool to watch her story unfold. You can also wear the artwork via tees and hoodies, Andy totes needs that Biggie Smalls one! She offers a fantastic price point for her prints and clothing, I can’t wait until I get my own home office to adorn with the badassness of Jacqueline’s work and other like-minded artists.
A Few Good Readzzzzz
Reading is good for you, mmmkay. Seriously though, there is nothing quite like a mind-opening/enriching read to make life that much better.
The Conscious Parent by Dr.Shefali has been my only parenting book to have read thus far. Admittedly, it was also my first, but was so incredibly powerful and eye-opening that I haven’t felt the need to pick up another (yet). My super zen, practitioner-of-the-present dental hygienist actually recommended it to me when I was still pregnant, I had never heard anyone mention it before. Mind. Blown. I don’t want to go into much detail, but if you are a parent, about to become one, or are planning to ever raise a tiny human, I HIGHLY suggest reading this book. Dr. Shefali is overall a spiritual/psychological genius, so I plan to read more of her work. Oprah is also a fan and proponent of Dr. Shefali’s work. So there you go.
Watch My Rising: A Recovery Anthology is actually extra-special to me as it includes my first published work. I submitted a piece (scary), it was accepted (yay!), and then promptly had my ass handed to me in editing (totally a good thing). It turned out to be a pretty dang good piece I must say (thank you, Lynn!). This anthology incluces 37 stories and poems touching on all angles of recovery; we joined as one voice to end the sigma associated with addiction and recovery. I am proud to say proceeds of this project go directly back to Recover Wyoming, an outstanding Recovery Community Organization (RCO) in my home state. They are doing wonderful things for the recovery community in Cheyenne, WY.
The Complete Conversations with God by Neale Donald Walsch has been suggested to me multiple times (hmmmm) yet I haven’t ordered it. It is on my Gifts to Me list as soon as I finish a few (yes, I read more than one at a time, terrible!) that are currently on my night stand. The women who have told me this is a must-read absolutely praise it’s existence; one I know from Al-Anon, the other is an active member of AA. Grab it for yourself, then we can read it together in the New Year! This is not new at all, by the way, it is 10 years old and apparently has even been made into a movie.
Nutrition Sheila has been featured here many times as Sheila consistently produces extremely informative pieces on relevant topics all with her unique sense of humor and signature Stallone references. This link will take your to her 2016 Wellness Gift Guide Spectacular, which is freaking awesome! Told her I’ll take one of each item pleaseandthankyou. Also scroll down the page to find her 2016 Holiday Guide and fab eCourses to help you live healthy, as well all know the importance of nutrition’s part in overall wellness.
Hope you can find something to treat your near and dear ones (and yourself) this holiday season and throughout the year. I’d also be remiss not to mention taking care of your spiritual and physical health as a priceless gift to yourself and others; we like you and want you to stick around. Alright, friends, that’s all she wrote (literally, I am tired)!
Be Good, Do Good