Thanks and Giving

Yup!  The holidays are here, and I can tell you that NYC FEELS like it.  This weather is for the birds, or should I say brrrrrrrrds?

Some of us (actually, scratch that) MOST of us do some sort of traveling over the holidays.  If you’re like me and travel a fair amount throughout the year, you likely feel it’s nice not stay at a hotel during the holidays, but instead shack up with your friends/family.

However, sometimes I DO feel like I’m invading their space.  On the flip side, I do love it when folks visit and stay with us… that way, we can gab in our jammies over coffee, in the morning.  On the final flip side, it’s awfully nice not to be beholden to anybody’s schedule, or feel as if you’re an inconvenience.  Hmm.  That was fairly contradictory, wasn’t it?  So, what’s the happy medium?

Put your friends/family up at a nearby hotel, and insist that they come over in the morning in their PJs!  Best of both worlds!   And, if you can swing it, it’s super classy to foot the bill.  Wyndam Hotel Group has a bazillion (*actual number!) of hotels around the globe, so they likely have one in your backyard.

Funny enough, I’m actually staying at one of their properties in NYC, having a lovely time (minus the cold) and enjoying the free warm chocolate chip cookies!  For that chocolatey GIVING, I’m pretty THANKFUL.

If you put your pals up in a hotel, it’s SO incredibly thoughtful to have a welcome bag when they arrive.  That way, they knew you were expecting and excited for their visit.  What do you fill the bag with?  A list of fun things to do in town, some snacks, hand lotion and lip balm for their winter-chapped lips!  You get the idea.  Also, don’t forget to include some water and fun drinks as traveling tends to dehydrate people.

Just today I tasted a new reduced calorie cola (8oz/60 calories) called Coca-Cola Life which is sweetened with cane sugar and Stevia leaf extract.  I can tell you it was super tasty, and comes in an adorable glass bottle (very iconic styling which, of course, is right up my alley).  GIVE some sweetness to your guests and they’ll be THANKFUL.

So you’re invited to somebody’s house for Thanksgiving dinner, and want to know what to bring?  You’re in one of three camps: food, wine or hostess gift.  Kinda simple, right?  But, how fun is it to make a family recipe and then share the actual recipe with your host?  Food and gift all in one!

If you go to Pompeian.com/labelmaker you can input a favorite family recipe (in my case, my Grandma Gerty’s challah stuffing), include a family photo, print it out and attach it to your very own bottle of Pompeian EVOO.  So basically, it’s a gift, a recipe and a piece of family history all in one.  Aw.  GIVING a family recipe is something for which anybody would be THANKFUL.

Now, if you’re in the vino camp, Frei Brothers Reserve from Sonoma has delish bottles of wine that are sure to go with anything you’re likely to put on your Thanksgiving dinner table.

They have a super drinkable Russian River Valley Chardonnay for your appetizer & cheese moment.  But, I bet you’re actually wondering what kind of wine you should drink with your turkey and sides?

Pinot is the answer!  They also have a tasty Russian River Valley Pinot Noir.  Since most of us are often confused about food/wine pairings throughout the year, here’s a great wine/food pairing resource for ANY time of the year.  I just GAVE some great vintner advice and your dinner table will assuredly be THANKFUL.

There’s much to be THANKFUL for and working with great companies who help me share these ideas with you is at the top of the list.  GIVE their products a try.

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