— Essentials —


Graphic design by Rosanna Kuruppu.
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Selecting holiday gifts can be frustrating, time-consuming, and expensive, so this year, think of me as your Holiday Gift Elf. I’ve put together a list of things under $50 for everyone on your list, including you. I’ve always thought it’s a sign you’ve chosen a great gift if you want one for yourself. I’ve also included a few pricier items because if nothing else, it’s fun to window-shop.


Everything I’ve selected is something I’d love to receive or buy for myself. I love and use both of the eyeshadow palettes plus I’ve included THE BEST hand cream in the world. Seriously. It heals and gets rid of cuticle problems and rough hands overnight. Are you familiar with the Gua Sha facial massage stone? I’ve seen positive benefits from using one on a regular basis and will do a post about them after the first of the year.

These great gifts are under $50.

Here are some gift ideas that are over $50. One is an LED Light Therapy Mask. Victoria Beckham swears by the Boost mask below. I’ve started going to a new facialist and had my second treatment yesterday. LED light therapy is included as part of the facial. I’ll let you know what I think about it. There are also gifts that will interest the man in your life whether that’s your sweetheart, your father, or brother.

What’s on your Most Wanted List this year? I have one item: artificial grass for my yard. Annie chases squirrels. I’ve quit trying to grow real grass, and when it rains it’s solid mud. What a mess!

Sometimes the best gifts don’t come in boxes. Maybe you’re hoping someone special will come into your life, or perhaps you’re wishing for good health for yourself or a loved one, or strength as you grieve the loss of a job or someone you love. Or maybe you need some insight and guidance before you move forward with something you’ve been thinking about. 

What if you get quiet and go within and talk to God about the things that are on your heart? It costs nothing and it’s priceless.

Love, Brenda


  • Irene Hall December 10, 2022 at 5:37 am

    So fun! I bought a bunch of crystal sun catchers for gifts. They make rainbows around the room, cheerful for those short winter days.

    This year my husband and my gift to eachother is a weekend getaway in the New England mountains. Snow, snowing shoeing, xcountry skiing, pancakes, dinner at an inn, a sauna and fireplace in our cottage. Heaven!

    Making memories is a priceless gift. I mailed my daughter and her family, who live in Texas, a box full of gingerbread house supplies and a bunch of my our cookie cutters. Tonight is gingerbread night over Google meetings. I made some dinosaur cookies for our grandson. Can’t wait to spend time with them in our kitchens.

    • 1010ParkPlace December 10, 2022 at 12:57 pm

      What lovely ideas, Joan! The sun catchers, the New England getaway, and the gingerbread house fixings. I know you’ll have a wonderful holiday! I’ve always wanted to try cross-country skiing. I imagine it requires strong legs and lots of stamina. xoxox, Brenda

  • Tara December 10, 2022 at 5:45 am

    Grand ending, GOD.

    Merry Christmas !

    • 1010ParkPlace December 10, 2022 at 12:57 pm

      Always and forever! Merry Christmas, Tara. Love, Brenda

  • Meredith December 10, 2022 at 7:32 am

    The true meaning of the holidays. “It costs nothing and it’s priceless.” Thank you Brenda!

    • 1010ParkPlace December 10, 2022 at 12:59 pm

      And thank you, Meredith, for reading and leaving me a note. I appreciate you and hope you have a joyous holiday season. xoxox, Brenda

  • Colleen December 10, 2022 at 7:55 am

    Happy Holidays Brenda. The Lenox Travel Mug is inexpensive and lovely. It comes in a pretty box, too. Thank you for including God.

    • 1010ParkPlace December 10, 2022 at 1:01 pm

      Colleen, Isn’t that the most beautiful mug? I flipped when I saw it and it’s so inexpensive. God is with me every day, so I’m thankful He’s with you as well. xoxox, Brenda

  • Arlo December 10, 2022 at 9:12 am

    So many pretty things! You always have such great taste. I see five things I’m going to buy as gifts and yes, perhaps one or two for me. Thank you for including Hanukkah. Happy Holidays Brenda!

    • 1010ParkPlace December 10, 2022 at 1:06 pm

      Thank you, Arlo. I love seeing you here. You sound like me, buying something as a gift and then not being able to resist one for me as well. I’ve always been grateful for my Jewish friends who often invite me to celebrate with them. xoxox, Brenda

  • Yvonne December 10, 2022 at 9:16 am

    The love of my live passed away a few days ago and I am devastated. I am exhausted and my wish for Christmas would be to see his face and hear his voice. Things are replaceable but what matters at the end is people. Brenda, thank you for your wonderful blog!

    • Betty December 10, 2022 at 10:47 am

      Yvonne, I’m sorry for your loss. This holiday season and for a long time to come will be difficult for you. The love of my life died two years ago. I know how you feel. Blessings to you dear lady.

    • 1010ParkPlace December 10, 2022 at 1:13 pm

      Oh, Yvonne! I’m brokenhearted for you. I know what it feels like to lose the love of your life. I waited all of my life for my second husband, James, and he died unexpectedly on Christmas. He changed my life in such profound ways. Some holidays are easier than others, but I can tell you, the raw grief does get better. A friend who’d lost her husband told me “it takes about a year before the worst of the pain goes away. Then you learn to walk alongside it.” She was right. I hope you have close friends and family to support you. I will keep you close, in my prayers. If you feel like it, please let me know how you’re doing. Love, Brenda

  • Barbara December 10, 2022 at 10:27 am

    I was going to tell you I clicked on the black Dixon charging block for my husband, but after reading Yvonne’s comment, it suddenly pales in comparison to what she’s going through. I’m sorry for your loss Yvonne. I pray you draw strength from those around you.

    • 1010ParkPlace December 10, 2022 at 1:20 pm

      You have a lot of compassion, Barbara. Thank you for leaving Yvonne this message. She’s going to need all of the love and support she can get. Loss happens every day, but it can be particularly hard when it happens during the holidays. The black, Dixon charging block is a fabulous gift. If “clicking on” means you bought it, I imagine your husband will love it. Blessings & much love, Brenda

  • Darlene December 10, 2022 at 10:30 am

    It costs nothing, and it’s priceless, and Yvonne lost the love of her life. It’s all mixed together in the same space and yet we’re all thankful and grateful for you, dear Brenda, and for what we have. I’m crying here in Cincinnati.

    • 1010ParkPlace December 10, 2022 at 1:24 pm

      Awe… Darlene… You’re right: Loss and love exist in the same space and through it all, we’re grateful for those who support us, no matter how small of a gesture it is. We all, especially Yvonne, need simple acts of kindness. Thank you. I appreciate your emotion and your beautiful thoughts. xoxox, Brenda

  • Josephine Floyd December 10, 2022 at 1:20 pm

    Thankyou, I always enjoy your posts. Have a wonderful happy Christmas xxxx

    • 1010ParkPlae December 10, 2022 at 1:27 pm

      Hi Jo, I love seeing you here and appreciate that you stop by, from halfway around the world, to leave me a message. I hope you and your family and friends have a wonderful Christmas. I want to meet you, special lady. Perhaps on your next trip to France. Are you going in the summer? Love, Brenda

  • Katherine December 10, 2022 at 4:53 pm

    Hi Brenda,
    I really like your best gifts do not come in a box. Brenda, this is so TRUE. We have not given one another presents that we wrap up. We say what we need and purchase it. I’m sure that does not work for everyone. The element of surprise is taken away perhaps, but I’m okay with that.
    I hope you treat yourself to artificial grass that should help you resolve your issues. I’ve heard you can select the type of AG that dogs and cats can do their business on.

  • Katherine December 10, 2022 at 4:56 pm

    Oops, I forgot to mention I love your graphic design. It’s excellent. Thanks for sharing it.

    • 1010ParkPlace December 10, 2022 at 5:37 pm

      Thank you, Katherine! I’d rather know what I’m getting and the giver knows it’s a great gift, so that sounds good to me. Happy holidays!! XOXOX, Brenda

  • LA CONTESSA December 11, 2022 at 5:37 am


    • Brenda Coffee December 23, 2022 at 1:22 pm

      Sending you lots of love Elizabeth. Brenda

  • elizabeth December 16, 2022 at 7:10 pm

    I don’t want anything for Christmas, except for my family and friends to be healthy and happy. I Leo all of your gift ideas but the best gift of all is the message to talk to God. A wonderful reminder to give it to God. Merry Christmas!

    • Brenda Coffee December 23, 2022 at 1:24 pm

      Merry Christmas, Elizabeth! xoxox, Brenda

  • Alan Baker February 1, 2023 at 9:28 am

    What’s on my Most Wanted List this year?
    This is a good question! Ever since I was a child, I always don’t know what to put on this list!

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