Hanukkah Gift Guideby Compiled by Natalie Jacobs October 31, 2013
Ah, gift giving. It’s fun when there is no pressure, but filling eight days with thoughtful and unique gifts for loved ones can quickly become a daunting task. Here at the Jewish Journal, we’ve sifted through piles of products to showcase some of our favorites for all the personalities on your list this year, with many locally-made items!
If you still need ideas, check out the sidebars throughout this section for details on local and digital shops that carry a plethora of interesting products all year round. Happy hunting.
Spread holiday cheer with these funny Hanukkah cards from Etsy shop owner Silly Reggie. These handmade cards smartly play up a variety of puns, with greetings like Dr. Dreidel, Happy Challah Day and I Love You a Latke. Cards ship within three days. Order online at sillyreggie.etsy.com.
Matzah Ball Books
$6.95 each/$34.75 for a 5-book set with free “Hanukkah with Noshy Boy and Friends”
You might be hard-pressed to find someone fluent in Yiddish, but sometimes pulling out a phrase like schvitz or chutzpah just makes sense. Give kids the ability to kvetch with the best of them with this series from Matzah Ball Books. In each of the five stories, a character is named with a Yiddish word that describes a central attribute of his or her personality. Order all five and get the Hanukkah book free. Order online, no shlep required: Matzahballbooks.com/order.
Craft and Create Activity Books
Infuse arts and crafts time with a bit more creativity with these value-packed craft sets from Melissa and Doug. This year, sets are available for fashion design, mixed metal jewelry, clay, foil art, and friendship bracelets. Sets include highly visual instructions and extra tips for kids aged pre-school to tweens. View and order at melissaanddoug.com.
Hand-painted by San Diego-native Mashell Ewing, these earrings are available in a multitude of vibrant colors and patterns, with two Hanukkah styles in stock this season. Stop by the Etsy shop and browse the collection for jewelry lovers of all ages at brookery.etsy.com.
These vintage-inspired pieces by San Diego designer Crista Miller come in a variety of trendy yet timeless styles. Our favorite necklace this season is a saddle-wood bead with jet-black nylon tassel and chalcedony black and turquoise triangles and blush-glass bead accents. Browse the whole collection, including earrings and hair pieces, at gildedlilygoods.com.
Lacey Haegen Naturally Luxurious Skin Care
$30 (shower soufflé)
This decadent body wash melts into warm skin to hydrate the body’s largest organ with nourishing natural ingredients. Fragrances are vanilla-based with accent combinations available in mint, orange, lavender or coconut. Browse this San Diego makeup artist’s full bath and body collection at laceyhaegen.com.
It’s always good to have a stock of chocolate gelt on hand during the holidays, but Sees Candies also has a whole spread of sweet treats with Hanukkah packaging, from peanut brittle to lollypops to a gift box with a little bit of everything. Shops are scattered around malls throughout the county for convenient last-minute stops.
You may have seen Praline Patisserie with their mouthwatering spread of caramel sauces at farmer’s markets around town but they also sell their decadent creations online. Available in six varieties, these make perfect hostess gifts or additions to personally assembled gift baskets. To find out if they will be in your neighborhood soon, or to place an order, visit pralinepatisserie.com.
New York’s Jew-ciest beer brewers, Shmaltz Brewing, are offering a He’Brew Holiday Gift Pack made up of seasonal favorites and new 2013 collaborations. The 8-pack includes two seasonal exclusives and six of the brewmaster’s favorites, with pun-y names like Funky Jewbelation and Death of a Contract Brewer. Guaranteed to at least get a laugh out of your beer lover. Available at BevMo, Cost Plus, Whole Foods, and Total Wine.
Tired of video lovers complaining about watching online content from tiny screens? Give your super fans the ability to stream videos from the Internet to an HDTV with Google’s Chromecast. Much cheaper than a larger computer or a new television with Internet capabilities, Chromecast lets you access videos from your smart devices just by plugging the USB-sized adapter into your TV. Some tech knowledge required. Purchase from the Google Play store, Amazon or at Best Buy.
Hipsters and DIY-ers will appreciate this recycled take on the classic menorah. Handmade with a bike handlebar and chain ring, this is a one-of-a-kind piece by Etsy shop owner Johnnie Olivan. Order at rejuicedbikespdx.etsy.com.
GeltFiend is back this year with new Hanukkah sweaters and old favorites from last year. This year’s additions are the Gimmelman, Spinmaster 2.0, Chanukitty and Catskills styles. Also new to the inventory this time around are bow ties and kids sweaters. Browse the entire collection and place your orders at geltfiend.com.