As if you didn’t have enough on your mind this holiday season – the decorating, the gifts, the travel, the weight gain – let me bring one more stress-causer to your attention: HOST GIFTS.
Host gifts are a thank you to the host or hostess of a house party (don’t bring a bottle of wine to a bar party – that’s weird). It’s a common courtesy that is not expected, but is remembered.
Between the ages of 18 and 25 host gifts are a nicety. Something you could bring to a party if you had the time and the cash to get it. Over 25? Unless you’re hitting up a holiday kegger, host gifts are a necessity!!! You are an adult, for God’s sake. Someone has graciously opened up their house to you. If you ever want to be invited back, fucking BRING SOMETHING.
Here are my dinner party go-to’s:
It’s obvious, it’s simple, it takes 30 seconds at a liquor store and is always appreciated. If you’re not sure what kind of wine to get, ask the dude behind the counter. Dudes behind counters usually have an opinion on this stuff. Or just wing it. Find something in the $15-$25 dollar range. Find something with a cool bottle. Find something you’d like to drink. And for ease, find something red. This way you don’t have to refrigerate it. During the holidays I like to dress up my bottles:
Available at Pottery Barn starting at $9.00.
If you’ve got the time and the motivation, a homemade dessert makes a lovely hostess gift. Grab a roll of Pillsbury cookie dough if the kitchen isn’t really your thing. Or, if you’re feeling a little adventurous, get theme-y. I made these pumpkin chocolate chip cookies for Thanksgiving. Aside from being delicious, they are seasonally appropriate. Anything with mint, nutmeg or cinnamon screams holidays. Google something easy. Voila. You’re a chef. You want extra credit? Display it on a nice holiday plate and at the end of the night when your hostess tries to return it, say, “oh no no – that’s for you!”
This lovely little gem from KMart is $3.49
A Personal Touch
If you have the time and forethought (god bless you, you overachiever), get something recipient-specific. Is your hostess traveling for the holidays? How about some nifty luggage tags or passport holders? Etsy’s practically cornered the market on cute shit like that. Do they have a dog (or a cat – don’t judge) that wear clothes? Hop over to Doggie Clothesline. Are you dreading this dinner party because your hostess is an awful cook? Maybe a cookbook is a good way to say, “hey – that thing you call lasagna that you serve every year – ever think about following a recipe?”.
Hostess gifts don’t require a card – just a small To:/From: tag. It’s just a small sentiment to ensure that your host knows you appreciate the invite and would like to come back some time in the future. Don’t forget it! And don over think it. Happy Holidays!