Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Quick Holiday Give-away


You guys! The gift guide below is generating a bunch of commissions income. We will add the bulk of it to our Partners in Health donation, but let's spend some of it together now! Do you, or does someone you know, need something (sold on Amazon) to make the holidays special? Write it in the comments below. I don't have a game plan yet, exactly, but check back Thursday, and I'll post the winners. I want to do this quickly, in case timing is of the essence! Also, on Thursday, I'll trade this post for one about making magical gravlax for the holidays. xo


p.s. One of our people here, Rebecca Weld, aka The Cookie Architect, sent us this fabulous puzzle that she designed, and we loved it so, so much. In case you, you know, needed one last puzzle. . . 

90 comments:

  1. Hi Catherine, This isn't a request for something from amazon (though thanks for the offer!), but for information. I *love* your blog and especially your gift ideas. So, here is my question. I have a memory of you writing about Ben doing some molecular gastronomy type stuff in the kitchen out of a book. I wanted to get my son the book, but I have had no luck finding this entry in the blog. As you can imagine, searching for "Ben" and "cooking" isn't getting me anywhere. Did I make this up? Thanks so much and happy holidays!

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    1. sew! it's here: http://benandbirdy.blogspot.com/2013/01/dr-pepper-caviar.html

      xo

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    2. Thank you so much! Ordered this, plus a scale and a 500g calibration weight. Let the spherification begin!

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  2. I'm very excited to get my hands on a copy of Lucky Peach Presents 101 Easy Asian Recipes... and I guess I'm not alone considering my place on the waitlist at our library. Yum food.

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    1. Hang in there, Anna! I'm on the list at my library too! : )

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  3. I would want to send that puzzle to my mother, who loves (1) Springbok puzzles, (2) Christmas puzzles, and (3) 500-piece puzzles!

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    1. Email me your (or your mom's) address, Swistle.

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    2. BEST CHRISTMAS ELF EVER

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    3. It arrived before Christmas, and she was so thrilled and surprised, and so completely amazed that you would send it to her! P.S. She worked on it over Christmas, and says it's a really good puzzle!

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    4. This makes me sooo Happy!! It's the best part of having made a puzzle image that people enjoy putting it together!!

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  4. I am looking for a walking stick for my 80 year old Mom. She doesn't want anything that looks like a walker or something an old person would use.....gotta love her spunk! thanks for sharing your Christmas card with us, your kids are gorgeous! I love Birdy's pixie haircut<3
    xoxoxoxo

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  5. I don't know if this is what you have in mind, but Carry The Future/Operation Refugee Child is doing great work to help Syrian refugee families and they have two Amazon wish lists:

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/registry/wishlist/3ECXME2QN38XW/ref=cm_wl_rlist_go_v?

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/registry/wishlist/14A7E3FQEKEJ/ref=cm_wl_rlist_go_v?

    I have no affiliation with the group except that I support the work they are doing.

    Wishing you and your family a very happy holiday. I am always so happy when I see a new blog post from you. Thank you! :)

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    1. Thank you for posting these links. A child carrier seems like such a small thing, but it can help so much.

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    2. Thank you, Nina!

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    3. We sent a baby carrier. What a brilliant idea.

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    4. Just sent a couple small items from their list. Thanks for sharing.

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  6. Beautiful greetings. Happy holidays to you and your beautiful family, Catherine. xo

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  7. dale in denver5:24 PM

    That pic of your "babies!!!" It looks like an indie band album cover.

    I second the Syrian refugee wish list!

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  8. There is an awesome game called Stinky Pig!! I want to add it to our inappropriate games collection!! But please choose someone more worthy and less fascinated with 12 year old boy humor!!

    Robin

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  9. Danielle H5:45 PM

    A few years ago you gifted me a non-nursing bra through one of these giveaways. That baby I was nursing is now turning 5 tomorrow!!

    We love your game suggestions. Slamwich is quite popular in our house!

    I love the idea of the Operation Refugee wish list. Also, our state libraries lost a LOT of funding this year. I know they would love donations of children's books. It is Pope County Library of Russellville, Arkansas.
    Thank you for being YOU!

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  10. A fancy shmancy blender that really works for smoothies, soups and adutish margaritas!

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    1. I hope you get one, Lori! I want one too.

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  11. All I want for Christmas is this picture of Birdy doing my puzzle. I grew up doing Springbok puzzles, and it's just cool to see. Luckily, I can afford my Amazon habit sort of, but after having my heart strings played like a piano by HONY for the Syrian Refugees, I could get behind that suggestion!

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  12. A nifty gadget called Tile to help us keep track of those items that keep getting lost -- keys, wallet, sunglasses. Thanks & happy holidays! I'm a long-time fan from the BabyCenter days. :) -Angela

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    Replies
    1. Ooh, my sister-in-law wants this too. Report back, if you get it!

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  13. A Roomba! I feel like my life is now dedicated to vacuuming and Swiffering now that my one year old eats anything she finds off the floors.

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  14. I would love for both of my kids to acquire ukuleles or a djimbe. Thanks for sharing the love.

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    1. Rhonda, I hope you end up getting these instruments for your kids! (We don't have enough credit to make this happen.)

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    3. Thank you Catherine! This blog is truly my favorite and what I consider to be your gift to us. I look forward to each entry and love your recipes so much. The caramel corn is a staple around here and one of my favorites was the concord grape focaccia.
      I hope you and yours have a **beautiful** holiday season!

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  15. Do we need anything? That's an exellent question.
    Once my list was huge:
    *a roof that didn't leak buckets every time it rained,
    *a vehicle large enough for our whole family,
    *working appliances (Why does one break as soon as the last one was repaired?),
    *just one more bedroom or at least some masterful way to fit another bed & bureau into our already crowded nest
    ...the list went on and on.

    I've recently discovered that though we may want those things we truly don't need them.
    We need peace & contentment to accept our lives the way they are instead of longing for Pinterest perfect.
    We need strength to be the best people we can be, because making the right choices isn't always easy.
    We need hope to choose to live one more day.
    We need to love & be loved. When it's all been said and done, it's not our presents that really matter its our presence.

    None of that can be found on Amazon;
    I hope you will find it's already in your heart.
    ~blessings, Faith

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  17. I just love that Birdy looks like Joan Jett and/or Leather Tuscedero in that picture!

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  18. Anonymous11:47 PM

    Catherine, I am an English teacher at a very diverse Michigan high school. In what way diverse? Our community boasts the second-to-largest Muslim population in the state, and we are [I've been told] the soon-to-be home of a number of Syrian refugees. One of my classes is a Humanities course to which our department has recently added a unit on Islamic culture (in addition to Judaism and Christianity). Reactions to the syllabus are mixed, even from administration. In light of recent events - ISIS activity, the Paris attacks, the crisis in Syria, Trump's campaign - the fear and confusion, even the racism I see in some parents and students is heightened. In class discussion, I work hard to humanize survivors of religious hatred, to make my kids see that Muslims are also victims of ISIS. I am sure you are familiar with Brandon Stanton's Humans of New York project. Lately, I've been reading a HONY story per day at the beginning of the hour, but I would really love a copy of Brandon's books for my classroom library. Students need his message of empathy and acceptance; they also need to be inspired by adults, like Brandon, who dedicate themselves to making our world a more genuine, gentle place to live.

    Wishing you all a peaceful holiday season!
    Amy

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    1. Love this. (And absolutely love HONY.)

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    2. Amy, email me your address.

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    3. Anonymous2:13 PM

      Done. Thanks, Catherine!

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  19. Betsy Hamilton8:20 AM

    I loved that when I put "Unbored Adventures" on my Amazon wish list, the "People who bought this also bought these..." books were also all your suggestions.

    As my son says, "We have everything we need and most things we want," but thank you so much for giving us good gift-giving ideas and for sharing the Amazon dividends.

    xo

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  20. Not a want/wish comment, just a thank you for your posts throughout the year. I hold tight to my (signed!) copy of Waiting for Birdy and I come here to be enlightened, entertained and always made to feel like we're Mamas who walk this path together. Happiest of holidays to you and your absolutely beautiful children.

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  21. I also love the idea of the refugees wish list. Living in one of the states whose leaders have bragged about their refusal to accommodate breaks my heart.

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  22. Just sent some stuff on the refugee wish list -- thanks for the heads-up about that.

    Has everyone heard about UNICEF's Art in a Box, Clowns without Borders, and Herbalists without Borders? Just some cool programs that might have gone under your radar.

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  23. Someone above mentioned it but seriously, a bra! I have been pregnant or nursing back to back for 47 of the last 48 months and just weaned my bebe. Disappointingly all the bras I painstakingly kept through five moves in four states don't even come close to fitting. Love what you do and the community you have created and am off to check out the Syrian refugee list :)

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    1. Katharine, email me, okay?

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  24. annette10:05 AM

    Catherine, your 2015 gift list was fantastic, and I purchased several items. Thank you! I’d like to send thanks to Anonymous, the Michigan HS teacher - providing our children knowledge, a global perspective, and the opportunity to develop empathy is important work and can make a difference in our fracturing country. I'm also fortunate to live in a refugee resettlement area (most recently from African and Middle Eastern conflicts) and my children have the benefit of a multicultural public school setting. My sons study comparative world religions in HS, a relevant learning opportunity that has impact. I hope Anonymous continues! I’d add a request for the HONY book for my daughter’s 5th grade teacher, who has already purchased and read RAD Women in her class. Given the over 50% english language learner statistic in the school, with some 22 languages spoken in the homes, the more opportunity to highlight connections, the better. I know she’d treasure and use the book in her teaching.

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    1. Annette, email me, okay?

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  25. I'd love another puzzle. Never can get enough.

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  27. I love all the gift / donation ideas -- but I'm really posting to say that I love the two different but same holiday pics of B&B!

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    1. Kelly, we've done them that way EVERY YEAR! It is crazy for me to look at them. xo

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    2. So cool! We have pics of our three with Santa for every year from the time the oldest was 8 months until he was 21. (Mine are now 20, 23, and 24 and out and about in the world). The early teen years were a little challenging, but the awkwardness faded and became fun again. I love seeing them all every Christmas!

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  28. Wow, after all those thoughtful and generous posts I feel like a selfish creep asking for the small Haba Animal Upon Animal game. :/ I think my girls would enjoy it -- we all still love playing Dwarves & Dice, another long-ago Catherine Newman Recommendation! Thanks for this giveaway and all the heartwarming suggestions, from you and your readers.

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    1. Anne, email me!

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    2. Verity1:20 PM

      Oo we ordered that game this year for my little boy but really more excited for it than he will be yet! Thanks for all the great suggestions and cheering my year up all the time! Xx

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    3. I ordered two sets of this game, and when they arrived, I handed them to my husband, with instruction to put them in my Christmas Stocking. I'm looking forward to eating out soon, and pulling it out of my purse (in an Altoids tin, of course), and having non-electronic fun as we wait for our food to arrive. Thank you for the excellent recommendation!

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  29. Puzzles...ah, all I want for Christmas is the patience and perseverance to do a puzzle with my children. They'd love it.

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  30. This is so thoughtful and awesome of you!! Makes me a bit teary. I might be too late to the game, but I would love to donate some books to my kids' school library. Budget cuts, title 1 school, NC legislative ridiculousness, etc etc means there's not much to go around and my son (5th grade, avid, voracious reader) says there aren't many higher level books that interest him in the school library. I can come up with specifics if this is a wish that can be granted :) Happy happy everything to you and your family!! xoxo

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  31. I don't want/need anything. I just want to thank you for this post, and for your generosity of spirit and that of all your readers, too. I have had a rough couple of days for various reasons, and reading through these requests and seeing those that you have granted makes me cry with gratitude for the reminder that there is still so much good in this world. Also, thank you for sharing yourself and your family with all of us for so many years. Even though we have never met, and likely never will, it sort of feels like I can call you my friend. Creepy? I hope not!

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  32. So many Amy's on here - yeah! Love this post and the amazing comments (teared up a little myself). I'm going to order the HONY book for my son and ask him to pick something from the wish list above that we can donate as a family.

    Can't wait for the new book. I still have copies of Waiting for Birdy that I mail to friends who are having their second child. Hope you come to St. Louis on a book tour. Happy holidays to you and yours.

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  33. This is really for *next* year but... I want a menorah for my kids. We are using the $2 tin one my dad bought in 1970-something and it is tippy and drippy and scares the bejeezus out of me. My little ones are 3 and 21 months: I want a menorah that won't tip or light them (or the cat) on fire. We've had a fuck of a year (I just finished 6 months of chemo and now am bed-ridden with shingles) so I couldn't get it together (where it= both my act and enough money) to buy a nice one for this year, but for NEXT year...

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    1. Hanna, I'm sorry that you've had such a shitty year. Email me, okay?

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    2. Done (sorry it took so long)! And thank you!

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  34. What a wonderful card. Those children are beauties. Thanks for sharing and warmth and goodness to you!

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  35. Don't want anything (already have your book on pre-order as my Christmas present from my husband)...just wanted to check in as another Amy fan!

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  36. Kelly9:52 AM

    Something I would love to find on Amazon is a collection of all your old Baby Center posts from way back when. I always meant to print them all up to save for my children. Now they are gone. Can we find them anywhere? My vote is for a reprint we can buy. I am so looking forward to your spring release. Will there be any book signings anywhere in New England?

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    1. Anonymous5:43 PM

      OMG yes this would be fanTASTic! Can it be done? Can I please buy THAT edited collection? Can you self-publish it, Catherine? We'll buy it from you in spades. PLEASE!!!! - kelda

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    2. Christy3:27 AM

      Yes! I went to look for those when my new baby was born this summer and was devastated to find that they were no longer available. I'd totally buy a print/kindle copy.

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    3. Verity1:23 PM

      Oh me too times 1000!! They were my go to comfort read after a tough parenting day and I was so upset when they vanished! Holding hard to the hope they're all coming in the new book! Wish I'd printed them all when I was reading them!

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  37. Anonymous5:42 PM

    Thank you, Catherine, for being your fabulous generous awesomest self. Thank you, benandbirdyians, for being equally fabulous and generous and awesome. I just sent the link to the refugee wishlist to my FB circle, and will go buy some undies and storage bins and let it be okay that my heart is breaking while I do so. From gratitude and grief and guilt and helplessness. I am so grateful for this community, such as it is.

    And the gift ideas have saved me, again and again, and again.

    ~kelda

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  38. Elliesee11:21 AM

    My 12 year old girl never wants anything, but she finally decided on magnetic silly putty for Christmas. It's 3$ so I find her request very sweet. I can definitely afford that, but at restaurants I try to keep her 3 younger sisters occupied and I do have my eye on the Haba Animal upon animal games, even if we're not very good at loosing yet.

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  39. OMG, how are your kids so grown-up (and grown-up looking)? Wow. Just wow. And happy all the holidays, too.

    xoxox, Loren

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  40. Anonymous1:58 PM

    You bought me the Nose Frida snot sucker two years ago for my not-yet-born baby. My now almost two-year-old has her first real cold (we are lucky to have such a healthy girl), and I just used it today! We appreciate your kindness and generosity!

    Sarah

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