Saturday, December 6, 2014

Teresapalooza!! Holiday Gift Guide

AKA small businesses with great products I think you should buy this holiday season instead of shopping at stupid Walmart...

Everyday Love Art by Nidhi Chanani

My favorite artist! (And a friend!) Beautiful, uplifting prints on her Web site and mugs, phone cases, & other goodies at her Zazzle store.

Each piece captures the simple moments in life that live forever in our hearts. Spread her message of love and make someone happy.

Perfect For: Romantics, mixed race couple friends, San Francisco residents, and new parents decorating nurseries & kids' rooms.

Krista Bermeo Studio

Another talented friend who makes handcrafted glass jewelry. Simple, elegant, and full of hearts - a blast of color we all need.

My favorite is her Horizon Necklace, a bright twist on a bar necklace that will surely draw attention.

Perfect For: Ladies who love it when you compliment their jewelry.


Stanford engineer Debbie Sterling took a simple idea to Kickstarter - a toy for girls that encourages them to build and think like engineers.

Now GoldieBlox is a girl-empowerment toy empire inspiring a generation of future engineers through the power of fun. (Check out their float at the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade!)

Perfect For: Any girl age 4 and up who is more than just a princess. (Hint: That's all of them!)

Keyprop & Flipcase by Integral Design

These innovative products, designed by a sorority sister from MIT, are brilliantly self-explanatory.

This is a Keyprop:

And this is a Flipcase, the collapsible sunglasses case:

You want them both now, right? I have one of each and I use them all the time!

Perfect For: Anyone who owns a smartphone or a pair of sunglasses.

Storytime Toys

Gorgeously designed dollhouses that inspire imaginative story play beyond the outworn tea party scenario.

Created by another sorority sister from MIT, these toys are built to be treasured for a lifetime. (Plus they pack away in the box case - fun and efficient!)

Perfect For: A playful kid who enjoys a good story. (Again, that's all of them!)

Get a Financial Life: Personal Finance in Your Twenties and Thirties by Beth Kobliner

This isn't a small business - just a damn great book with practical, easy-to-understand straight talk about getting your money in order.

I've read dozens of personal finance books, and while I'm still a huge fan of Suze Orman and David Bach, this is hands-down the best starter book for anyone who wants to take control of their financial future.

Perfect For: Recent college grads, siblings you shake your head about behind their backs...and probably you.

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