My favorite part of this season is the idea of giving from the heart. Over the past couple of years, my family and I have opened our hearts and home to rescued farm animals, and these beautiful beings have inspired me to find gifts that give back and celebrate animals whose lives I hope more people will be encouraged to save.
For me, the holidays are also about reflection and remembering those in need. While it may not spread holiday cheer to remind people that nearly 10 billion factory-farmed animals are slaughtered for food each year, I can certainly present a gift that shows just how easy, fashionable, and — yes — even delicious a plant-based, do-no-harm lifestyle can be. You never know where and when inspiration will take root, and maybe, just maybe, they’ll make a few changes for the greater good, too. Then they’ll also receive the gift of a reduced risk of heart disease, hypertension, cancer, and type 2 diabetes (according to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics), and the environment will get a gift, as animal agriculture is responsible for up to 35% of greenhouse gas emissions, according to a report from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.
Here are just a few of my current favorite things that are guaranteed to make people squeal with happiness.
Kat Von D Lipsticks for Farm Sanctuary
I have to admit to having an Oprah complex. I live for those moments when I can say, “You get a car and you get a car…” Not being Oprah, however, means that for me it looks more like, “You get a lipstick and you get a lipstick…” I’m a bulk shopper, so when Kat Von D so generously named four gorgeous lipstick colors after four of my favorite animals at Farm Sanctuary and donated a portion of the proceeds — well, I was undone, and filled my cart. I wear the lipsticks, and then when someone compliments them, I grab one out of my bag for them. My favorites are Julia and Thumbelina! I love that they stay on my lips and never on my teeth. They also provide me an opportunity to tell the animals’ stories … muahaha.
Matt & Nat Bag (pictured is my favorite, favorite bag)
I am a sucker for a gorgeous big bag, and the more compartments a bag has, the fewer things I lose. Matt & Nat is one of my all-time favorite companies. I literally trick myself into thinking I need another bag or wallet or anything else of theirs. I’m not exaggerating when I say that I can find something for each and every one of family members on their site. So while there might be some philosophical or political differences at our holiday meals, everyone can agree that I am an awesome gift-giver.
Do Unto Animals Journals
I like to gift these journals with a note suggesting that the recipient keep all of their brilliant ideas in them.
Vegan Treats and/or Farm Sanctuary Rugelach
Jon and I love sending everyone cannoli from Vegan Treats at the holidays. This year, Farm Sanctuary has delicious rugelach that we’d be remiss not to include in the mix.
Farm Sanctuary’s Coziest Hoodie on the Planet
Truly, this is the coziest hoodie on the planet, and I know not a soul who doesn’t love getting one.
Anna and Maybelle Tote Bag
My girls Anna and Maybelle adorn this sturdy, spacious tote. This is another present I love to give, and if I really like you, I’ll usually put another treat in the bag.
Counting Sheep Relaxation Candle
I got to pick the scent of this candle, so of course I think it’s the best-smelling gift ever!
Do Unto Animals Mug Set
These animals are actual friends, and they were painted by one of my dearest friends, Lisel Ashlock, so it’s really fun to give them as gifts. They are so sweet!!!!!!!!