But when you get right down to it, the holidays can be a well intentioned horror flick full of stress, shopping mall road rage, and terror induced by Seasonal Affected Disorder.
Rather than crunch the numbers and gnash your teeth over holiday gift giving, here's a great list of last minute items to pick up for girlfriends, sisters, spouses and "work wives."
$5 - A Boot of Beer and a Taco at Bakersfield
Sometimes the best gift you can give someone is the gift of your time. And a quality moment at Bakersfield is a perfect way to share that gift - especially when the gift involves beer and a delicious, freshly made taco. Bakersfield sells $2 glass boots of draft PBR and several of its tacos are $3 a piece. What better way to give a cost effective, quality gift? I dig it. 1200 block of Vine St. in Over-the-Rhine.
$10 - Keep Buzzin' Tangerine Hand Cream
Perhaps the best hand cream I've ever used, Keep Buzzin' is 100 percent natural and sustainable, and made in the good 'ol U. S. of A. You can get yours in a variety of scents including fresh lemon and lavender; I went crazy for the tangerine. I picked up mine for around $10 at Park + Vine at 1202 Main St.
$25 - ModelCo Fibre Lashxtend Lengthening Mascara
Some ladies forgo making an investment in their mascara, instead sticking with the much heralded, tried-and-true "Pink and Green" tube from the drug store. If your lady friend is one of those gals, surprise her with this phenomenal lash extender from ModelCo. The formula includes tiny fibers that attach themselves to the end of your lashes, giving you a longer, fuller look. I got a tube in my monthly Birchbox subscription a month ago and my eyes haven't been the same. Bonus: One length of the tube is covered with a mirror, giving you an easy vantage point for on-the-go touch ups. $24 at Birchbox.
$50 - Many Beautiful Things at Mannequin Boutique
Some of you may be lamenting a popular chorus this time of year: "She has everything! I just don't know what kind of gift to give the woman who has everything!" The answer is easy - vintage. Mannequin is a vintage resale shop that features a variety of gently used designer pieces and vintage goods. A quick perusal through the store and you'll see familiar labels like Chanel, Prada and Manolo Blahnik. But you'll also know many beautiful pieces that hearken back to another time when people enjoyed finer, well made things. In the $50 price range you can score a variety of items including darling, structured handbags from the 1940s or chunky, on-trend accessories straight from New York.
And the proceeds from every purchase go to seven local non-profits including Freestore Foodbank, Lighthouse Youth Services, Stop Aids, and UCAN Spay/Neuter Clinic. 1400 block of Vine St., OtR.
$100 - A Pair of Tickets to Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati
Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati is a vibrant, creative enterprise that draws thousands of theatre fans to Over-the-Rhine every year. From productions ranging to the deep and powerful Good People, to the silly and trippy Alice in Wonderland, this venue is a delightful little theatre amidst the restaurants at 12th and Vine. You can score a pair of tickets to any show for $84 or less.
$250 - A Bottle of Bond No. 9
My favorite fragrance line came out with a new scent this fall - Manhattan - and it would make a perfect winter fragrance. Its top notes include hints of nutmeg and coriander, supported by wafts of chocolate and gingerbread. A musky scent, it's bold enough for winter and is sure to stand out from everybody else's flowery perfumes. $190 for 50 ml; $270 for 100 ml.
$500 - Elsa Peretti Open Bottle Pendant at Tiffany & Co.
Let's be honest. Any girl will squeal with giddy delight upon receiving a Tiffany box in Pantone 1837 (yes, Tiffany has its own Pantone color. But I digress). I've envied this design ever since I was a tween. Its graceful curves and practical applications are limitless. You could pour a bit of your signature fragrance in it, allowing the scent to warm as the flask rests upon your decolletage. You could also turn it into a sneaky, tethered shot glass - perfect for stealing a nip during a mind numbing meeting.
The chain is 28 inches long and the bottle is 45 mm by 35 mm. $495 at the Tiffany & Co. at 5th and Vine.
Kate's Random Musings by Kate the Great is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.