Gift Ideas: Stocking Stuffer Snacks

If you need ideas for stocking stuffers for friends and family, something I like to do is look at Amazon for unusual foods that they wouldn’t otherwise try. My husband is obsessed with jalapeños, my mother really loves onions, I like anything that’s birthday cake–flavored — and at Amazon you can find everything from jalapeño KIND bars to glazed donut protein bars to caramelized-onion chips. If you have to go through Amazon Pantry to buy what you want, you can usually reach free shipping if you get a bunch of things at once. The pictured bars are $13 for a box of 12 at Amazon (but you can get them at a lot of other places). Roasted Jalapeño KIND Bars

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  1. Anonymous :

    What do you do when it feels like everyone in the world is pregnant or raising kids and you at age 38 are pretty much living the same life you did at 22 – single, no kids etc? I’m actually not too lonely or wishing for babies. But went out to lunch with work friends – all of whom are pregnant or had a child within the last year – so it turned into a detailed discussion of birth and related advice to the pregnant ladies while I sat and played with my phone. And this is not the first time it’s happened. Is the only answer to never hang out at work? Because my option is this group who I really like (had more in common with them 2-3 yrs ago before babies) or the group of 25-26 yr olds who are talking about flying “home” for Christmas – as in parents home. I have more in common with the 25 yr olds honestly but I don’t hang with them bc I’m sure they want to talk with their own peers without some old lady there. I’ve never had a job situation where I didn’t have work friends/didn’t fit in – I guess this is what it’s like . . . .

    • Anonymous :

      Welcome to my life. Luckily I have 2 good friends my age who haven’t succumbed yet to husbands/babies so I spend most of my time with them. My other friends are always like, “You spend so much time with [single friend]!” Yeah I do, because she’s fun and doesn’t want to talk about childbirth. JFC.

      • I also agree. FOOEY! Almost all of my freinds are MARRIED, and some have even divorced already! I feel that I am NOT abel to find a guy to marry me b/c I am either to smart, or to beautiful, or more likeley, both! If I were onley a slightly plainer lookeing woman with a menial job, I am sure I could have been married with Kid’s by now. However, I do NOT think I would be happy b/c my husband would in all likeleihood be something like an assistant to the assistant manager of a store at the Rosevelt Field. NOT that there is anything wrong with that, but I feel that a person with my knowledge and expereince needs a man who is more suitable–either a lawyer, or an investement banker, who I could communicate with at the same level!

        But I agree. I want a baby, so I need a man of means to first MARRY me. How can I get men past the fear they must have in trying to approach me? I really will NOT bite them, so why are they staying so far away? DOUBEL FOOEY! I can NOT get married until I get a guy interested in me. If I onley knew how! Help!!!

    • “I have more in common with the 25 yr olds honestly but I don’t hang with them bc I’m sure they want to talk with their own peers without some old lady there.”

      I’m 33 and my close friend range in age from 25 to 45. Not sure this statement is true. There’s a fair amount of age-related teasing (which I both get and give), but it’s all meant in good fun. If you like people spend time with them. I also suggest a social hobby. It gives you something to talk about with friends, even friends with children, other than their children. I find that with my friends that have children with whom I share a hobby we talk less exclusively about their children.

      • Anonymous :

        This. As a 24-year-old, one of my best friends is in her 60s, she’s divorced and has grown up kids, and frankly lives a really similar life to me. Most of my work friends are 10-20 years older than me, because I am by far the youngest person in the office. Honestly, age is just a number, and I am far more interested in being friends who someone who is interesting than someone who is my same age.

    • I think this is pretty normal. People like to hang out with people with similar interests facing similar things in life. That said, don’t discount everyone who doesn’t match your description. For example, I’m married but my life hasn’t changed a ton since I was single (besides not dating other people) We spend a ton of time apart and I still do things with friends/single people. I also have a close friend with a kid and I sometimes like to be included in kid things.

      I’m sure plenty of people hang out and do things across groups, but for the most part people just like hanging out with people like them. For you, there are plenty of people around your age who aren’t into childbirth or hanging out with parents. you might have to search a bit, but they’re there. It kind of sucks, though, I know.

    • Anonymous :

      From someone with kids, I just want to say I think it will get a little better as their kids get older. Having a baby is a terrible shock to the system that for me required a lot of commiserating with other people going through it to help me adjust. But a few years later I am more able to talk about non-kid things and enjoy doing so.

    • Anonymous :

      There are people even with young kids who don’t want to speak of birth ever, either bc it’s way too personal or bc they just want to forget. We do exist and are cringing at those conversations just as you are . . . look for us.

    • I’m married but no kids, and I feel like this constantly and it sucks. Honestly, I relate more to my male coworkers because even when they have little kids, it seems like the talk is less likely to revolve around babies/pregnancies. I also have had luck hanging out with women who are a bit older and whose kids are in high school or even out of the house. It’s not that I begrudge the mothers of little ones for wanting to talk about them – I just can’t relate, and that’s hard.

      The worst is when someone expressly mentions that non-parents just don’t understand, etc. I’m not doubting that it’s true, I just wish people understood how incredibly isolating it is to have someone say that when you’re the only non-parent in a group.

      • Anonymous :

        Op here – yes this exactly. The conversation turned into – until you have a baby you don’t get it. So in turn I checked out and was on my phone. I get that I probably don’t get it, yet I don’t think birthing a baby allows one to lose all manners either; if I’m out to lunch with 3 people and it turns out the other 2 are into college football as am I, I’ll talk about it; but if I notice person #3 checking out and playing with their phone I’ll bring the topic back to something everyone can chat about. Apparently with these ladies and birth and infants, that just isn’t an option.

        • Yes, exactly! I wish I had a reliable way of re-directing these kinds of conversations, or a snappy comeback to the “people without kids just don’t understand” comments. It’s so rude. I don’t go around offering birthing or parenting advice, so why do people feel the need to point out that I’m not qualified to comment on the topic everyone’s discussing? It’s maddening.

          I also agree that it’s a common courtesy not to exclude someone from a group conversation by talking exclusively about a topic they can’t relate to – especially if it’s obviously making them uncomfortable.

          I’ve started avoiding groups of moms (with young kids, anyway) because I’ve had so many bad experiences this way. One on one conversations are ok, as are mixed groups, for whatever reason.


        • Rainbow Hair :

          It doesn’t sound like you like these women any more. That’s ok! You don’t have to have a friend group at work, and you definitely shouldn’t waste your time going out with people whose interests bore you and who you think aren’t being polite to you.

          (If anyone would ever, ever, ever turn the topic away from football when they saw my eyes glazing over, I would be so eternally grateful. Sigh.)

    • Be my friend? I’m 25 and married but child free by choice (and will be forever) I don’t want to hear about the baby stuff either or really the wedding stuff (I eloped). My apartment is my home and I have my own celebrations with my husband and our dogs, as well as a variety of not child friendly interests.

      • Anonymous :

        I’m 50 – can I be your older friend? I eloped too, childfree, so I guess can’t relate to the markers of life that most women enjoy.

        • MidwestAnon :

          I just want to weigh in here and say that I want to be friends with all of you too. 37. Single and child free and I understand all of this. Big time. Just this weekend I saw (social media is cruel sometimes) that a group of long time girlfriends got together for a holiday party with their husbands and children. The single ladies weren’t invited.

          I’m now in a space of seriously – and for good reason – evaluating those friendships. But also? My 30s are hard. No good advice. Just empathy.

          • Anonymous :

            Ok that’s just rude. I understand not inviting singles to kid birthday parties – bc you don’t have a 2 yr old to bring who can be “friends” with their 2 yr old. But excluding from a holiday party?? Holidays aren’t a kid event so why does it even matter if you have a kid or not? I’m in your boat exactly (37 and single) and that would make me act much “colder” towards these friends going forward.

          • mid 30s, single, childfree now and forever… hating that I feel like I either never see my friends with kids or have to all but beg to see them and promise I don’t mind seeing their kids too (I even enjoy some of them). Even the online sites to meet friends are often meant for those who are moms/marrieds/looking for hookups/drinking-focused.

            what about the rest of us?!

          • lawsuited :

            If you had been invited to the party would you have gone and been angry that the conversations revolved around children? If it’s considered rude for parents to talk about their children around their friends without children, I suppose parents need parents-only events to have those sort of interactions.

          • No one said it’s rude to talk about your children, that would be ridiculous. The OP was talking about a situation where she was the only non-parent in the group at a workplace lunch where not only was she ignored and excluded from the conversation, she was explicitly told she couldn’t possibly understand what the others were talking about. That is rude.

            Of course it’s not rude to talk about your kids.

          • Ugh that’s terrible. I’m sorry. I understand – I am 30 and single and childfree and generally I like my life, but around the holidays it gets harder. I don’t have my own family and everyone around this time of year is doing family things, or Christmas things with their own kids and it just feels kind of isolating.

            lawsuited – I think that’s a ridiculous and unfair comment to make (and verging on the “smug married/parent” stereotype. Her friends didn’t invite her to a party – obviously it feels terrible and isolating.

    • Anonymous :

      Always thought it was bad manners to talk about medical stuff in depth in a group conversation esp medical stuff happening between one’s legs even if others have had the same things happen between their legs. I mean I wouldn’t sit there and commiserate about high blood pressure esp if I knew that some people I was chatting with didn’t have high blood pressure.

    • I understand how you feel – i’m slightly older than you (39) and unmarried and childless (though I desperately hope to have one and am TTC). For me the conversations are difficult for a different reason – I wonder if I will ever have this experience or if it is just something I missed the boat on, like the ghost ship story by Cheryl Strayed. I’ve learned to try and connect more with other childless/childfree women at work and then try to limit contact with the women you described. In fact I pretty much dropped out of my book club b/c it was all weddings/pregnancy/childbirth/breastfeeding all the time. I really liked the group of women but it just became too painful to withstand. Anyway, I agree with the suggestions above and also suggest trying to seek out others who are similarly situated. They are out there (maybe not at work, but somewhere).

  2. Reconcile with Mother :

    I have never had a good relationship with my mom. I feel like I have tried enough. About 50% of the time we can get along. The other half of the time she screams at me and I refuse to talk to her. I am not a screamer, and generally just shut down when someone makes me angry. I would really like half of our interactions to not be this way, but good grief she gets under my skin.

    My mom recently told me that my dad (who I am close with) has asked us to “reconcile before he dies.” I stayed calm and said I am willing to talk to her about things, and she insists we do this in person. We live far away from each other. I am suspicious that my dad even said that or anything like it, but setting that aside, and at the risk of seeming like a terrible person, I am not sure want to do on this. She has been borderline emotionally abusive to me throughout my life, and physically abusive a few times when I was in grade school.

    My husband knows her and thinks it is a trap and I shouldn’t do it, but I also don’t want to ignore a seemingly reasonable request. Both he and I are concerned this is not going to go well, and it will take me a long time toe “recover.” He said it perfectly – on the rationality scale, I am about a 98 and she is about a 2. It took me 3 months to fully emotionally recover from my last visit with her (i.e., no more nightmares).

    I am not sure what to do. I hate to go behind her back, but I am tempted to talk to my dad about this and see what he is wanting from this if anything. Or to just ignore the request and move on with my life. But I don’t want to hurt my dad. Gah.


    • Anonymous :

      You owe her nothing. Don’t do it. It’s totally a trap.

      Explain your feelings to your dad, tell him that you love him, but you won’t be subjecting yourself to more abuse.

    • I don’t think it would be unreasonable at all to talk to your father and I wouldn’t consider it going behind her back. It sounds like if he did ask for this, it may be an impossible task and it could be seriously emotionally damaging to you. Would he want to cause you this pain? Does he understand what a difficult thing this would be and would be understand if you told him you wanted to do this but just can’t?

      • Reconcile with Mother :

        No, he would not want to cause her pain. Now that I think more about it, I wonder if he said something to her more along the lines of “get along with your daughter for me please.”

        Antedote: There was a big drama a few years ago when he came up with a system to gently tap her on the shoulder when he sensed she was going to say/said something out of line towards me, my husband, or my kids. I guess they talked about presumably confidentially in advance of a family different, and she made a big announcement of the system and how she couldn’t believe her husband would treat her this way and stormed away. I know my dad probably shouldn’t treat a grown adult this way, but he was trying to keep the peace and it really is evidence of where he thinks the problem lies.

        Thanks for the comments everyone. I am going to talk to my dad, and likely not do this, unless he has a specific idea of what he is wanting.

    • Anonymous :

      Talk to your dad. Ask him what he means by “reconcile” and then think about what he is asking for, if anything, in good faith. After that, you can decide what you want to do, whether it is doable and whether it is in your best interest. I don’t think you have to do it, but if you are close with your dad, it may help him to understand what your limits are.

    • Killer Kitten Heels :

      My mother does this kind of triangulation a lot (“So-and-so wants such-and-such,” where “such-and-such” just happens to be the thing SHE wants) – 90% of the time, she is dramatically misrepresenting (if not outright lying about) what “so-and-so” said/wants. I’m with your husband – it’s a trap. You can still choose to go, if you want to, but know going in it’s a trap and prepare accordingly.

      Also, Call your dad! Not necessarily “just” to fact-check your mom, but because why wouldn’t you directly call your own dad? Directly calling your dad to talk to him is not “going behind your mom’s back” in any way, and it says a lot about how much she is still inside your head that you don’t seem to realize there’s nothing wrong with just calling your own father.

    • If it takes you months to recover from an interaction with her, your dad’s request to reconcile is actually not reasonable. Also, refusing a request is not ignoring it.You can consider a request, and decide that you can’t do it. That’s a valid response to a request. I would talk to him about it though. In my view a request comes from the requester, not a third party. If he’s not going to ask you directly, ignoring (as in not considering it or responding at all) is actually totally valid.

      My relationship with my mother is terrible. She’s a mean person. I keep in contact with her out of a sense of obligation but we have no emotional connection anymore. My siblings have cut her off and I support that decision as the best decision for them. What I’m saying is: if you don’t do this you’re not a terrible person.

      • Yes to your first paragraph! It may be what your dad wants, but that doesn’t mean that 1) it’s ever going to happen or 2) that you have to do it.

    • Anonymous :

      You don’t owe your mother, or for that matter, your father anything. My mother sounds a lot like your’s. She is nice until she isn’t, and she causes drama at every holiday, so I had to put up major boundaries. She also is emotionally manipulative and was physically abusive in the past. My therapist thinks she has undiagnosed borderline personality disorder. Whatever her issues, the boundaries include no holidays with her because that always results in a fight or her screaming.

      Other boundaries are short phone calls, otherwise she can easily spend an hour complaining about everything in a really hateful way, and I only see her in public. No going to hang out at her house, even though she’s 25 minutes away. I suggest we do lunch or dinner, that way she won’t start screaming at me. She is very pleasant in public.

      I’ve also accepted her for how she is. For instance, she doesn’t buy me presents because I’m either too fat, or my hair is too short, or she likes my dog more than me, or…etc. Typically I get lots of dog presents, and I’m ok with it because I’ve accepted nothing will ever please her.

      Bringing it back to your mom. You can’t “reconcile” with a fundamentally unhappy person. Someone who is miserable will always find something to fight about. Google adult daughters of narcissistic mothers for more tips.

      • “You can’t “reconcile” with a fundamentally unhappy person. Someone who is miserable will always find something to fight about.”

        So much this. For some people, when they’re unhappy they need a target. Sometimes, they choose one at random. If it’s you, there’s nothing you can do about it.

      • Reconcile with Mother :

        Not that I want other people to have problems with their moms, but it is comforting to hear others’ stories. We must be long lost sisters.

        We also have a “no holidays” rule. That was implemented by my husband. He was tired of having our holidays ruined, and now we have fun holidays with just us and our kids.

        My mom also doesn’t buy me anything because I asked her to stop buying me things. She buys in appropriate gifts, and used to consistently buy me a size 8 when I am a size 2. “You are chubby, so you can’t be a size 2.” It is a wonder I don’t have an eating disorder, psychological issues, etc. She is also banned from buying my kids gifts after a few really inappropriate, borderline offensive gifts.

        • OMG the size thing. My sister wears a 2 and I wear a 4/6. My mother _insists_ that this is not true and I am thinner than my sister, my sister is chubby, and there’s no way she wears a size 2. The tags in _all of her clothes_ are no evidence.

          • Just to confirm that your mother’s perception is not realistic:
            – A quick & dirty Google search confirms that the average woman in the U.S. wears at least a size 12, if not 14, 16, 0r 18.
            – from the Database of One: I was a size 6 about 40 years ago. These days I’m working to shrink from size 14 to size 12.
            – Most women in post-industrial societies who are not impoverished will gain weight over the years.

            On your behalf, grrrrrr.

          • Ya I’m a size 6/8 and made to feel like the fattest person alive in my family. My mom will either buy me gifts far too large, or buy me clothes in sizes that are too small (because apparently I get offended by clothes in larger sizes). Is it too much to ask to buy me something that may fit and not make comments about it?

      • Reconcile with Mother :

        “Google adult daughters of narcissistic mothers for more tips.”

        OMG that google search. I read an article in Forbes that had a list of nine behaviors narcissistic parents exhibit toward their children, and my mother fits each to a T.

    • Maybe this will help? :

      Keep in mind that the writer isn’t a professional and is often based on personal experience, not professional guidance. <3

    • This is not my mom, but my sister. She’s emotionally manipulative, makes absolutely everything about her, and is the ultimate victim. She says absolutely awful stuff, example, “you’re going to turn your daughter into a l3sbian by letting her play sports”, and you can’t call her on it because then it turns into the kitchen sink of complaints about things I said that offended her when we were in elementary school.

      That said, as long as we keep the relationship superficial, we are fine. I know she talks sh1t about me behind my back to our mutual friends and relatives. It used to bug me a lot, but as I’ve gotten older I think her crazy is more obvious, and I think people know who I am by how I live my life and treat others, so I just try to rise above. I do not talk about her with any of these people. Just my own friends and spouse, and now, I guess, this community.

      I’ve put some rigid boundaries around my relationship with her without ever speaking the boundaries. Sure, we can be friends on facebook. Sure, we can have a text string going with our cousin (and she can be hilarious when she’s not being awful), but I’m fully aware she as a side string going on with the cousin snarking on me. Sure, I’ll see her at that family wedding that’s coming up. But I will never bring up anything serious or controversial with her. And if she gets in a mood and starts in on one of her long complaints, I will excuse myself, or not answer the text, or unfollow her on facebook (I did the unfollow a long time ago.) I have never been to her house. I have not hung out 1:1 with her since 2010.

      The thing that makes me feel in control of this is that I have established the boundaries, and I get to maintain them. She doesn’t have to do anything. It’s up to me.

      So I write all of this to say, you don’t have to have either a zero or one hundred relationship with your mom. You can have a relationship with your mom that is twenty or fifteen. You get to choose. Your dad does not get to choose. Your mom does not get to choose. This is your choice, and you can own this.

    • Anonymous :

      Say no; also talk to your dad.

  3. Happiness prereq :

    Hive, I need your advice. My partner confided in me last night that:

    She got so blackout drunk at her business Christmas party on Friday night that she doesn’t even remember it. She only knows how and when she got home because she found an Uber receipt on her phone.


    That she has not been generally happy or satisfied with her life in over a year.

    The excessive alcohol consumption is not news to me, but the happiness problem is. Her and I have been together for six months, so I naturally feel like I must be doing something wrong. But I also feel that it’s a person’s own job to make themself happy, and that it can’t be a partner’s responsibility. Sure, a partner can contribute to, and share in, that happiness, but I feel a baseline level of happiness and life satisfaction is required before a person can be in a relationship. This puts a lot of pressure on me and I think it might be a dealbreaker. What do you think? Do people need to be happy before they date?

    • Rainbow Hair :

      You say you feel like you’re doing something wrong. I would say, don’t take this as a referendum on you. She was sad for six months longer than she was dating you. Someone can be dating a great person and still be in a bad place in their life.

      If she’s putting pressure on you — like you need to fix this for her — that’s a worrisome thing, I think, because you can’t fix her life and feelings, and anyway, that’s not your job. If, though, she’s reaching out, like, “hey, i know this is not good. i’m gonna do these things to get better. can you help me with ABC?” then… eh, I’d consider it.

    • Anonymous :

      You need to trust your gut here. Your spidey senses are telling you that this relationship is no good. You’re coming here looking for confirmation of what you already know.

      Yes, this is a dealbreaker. No, she is not healthy enough to be in a relationship. And, no, this is not your fault, you are not doing anything wrong, and her happiness is not your responsibility. Pat yourself on the back for having good instincts here and move on.

    • How Long? :

      I agree with Rainbow Hair above.

      My husband and I are in the process of divorcing. One of his complaints about our relationship is that he derives his primary happiness from our relationship, and I do not. Our relationship brought me so much joy, but I was/am happy in the other aspects of my life, and the relationship of course added to that. We were married 13 years, and only now am I realizing how difficult it is to be with someone who does not have a baseline of happiness outside the relationship. My entire mood and all my actions were aimed at trying to make him happy a lot the time when we were together. It was the situation Rainbow Hair articulated that he was putting pressure on me and expecting me to fix his feelings. In the end, I couldn’t fix it, and our marriage disintegrated.

      So, having gone through all that, I would not want to be with someone again who expected me to “make” them happy through the relationship. It’s a different thing altogether if you have an established relationship and the person is working on it and just needs your help getting over the hump.

    • Not an Expert :

      That is a tough one, and I’m sorry you are having to navigate it.

      I agree that it can’t be your responsibility to make your partner happy. That is just not possible, and it’s not fair to you. The alcohol misuse is also a big red flag. For me, these two issues are deal breakers, but that would be a difficult decision that I would mull over for a very long time. Years later, after finally ending things for the same reasons I had identified early on, I would look back and see with fresh eyes what a load I had been carrying, and I would feel relief.

      Some people can date before resolving their unhappiness (for some, this cannot be resolved). But maybe they would not make the best partners for you, since you sound like someone who is (1) generally happy and (2) quite affected by the emotions of those close to you.

      I wish you the best of luck in what has to be a hard decision, and I support you regardless of how you choose to proceed.

    • “Do people need to be happy before they date?”

      No, but they should have some idea what happiness means for them and what’s going to help them get there.

    • I think her behavior does raise a red flag, but it depends on how she talks about it with you. Is she sad and embarrassed about what happened and wants to ensure she makes healthier/safer choices in the future? Is she doing any soul searching? Is she blaming you, or are you just interpreting it that way? I think we all make mistakes and go through down times, whether or not we are in a solid relationship. If she was massively hung over, she might have had an overly negative impression of the last six months, that was colored by her own disappointment in herself. How many of us have woken up hating life when our entire bodies are pumping in pain? But she could bounce back and be okay. I’d wait a bit and not take one bad mistake as a sign of how the relationships is going, but stay tune in for other signs.

  4. Can’t share in real like yet other than a couple of friends, but I want to shout from the rooftops! I just got a job that seems amazing, for a company that actually takes good care of its people. I’ll start in the new year.

    I’ve been running my own tax practice for years, but due to the nature of the kind of work I feel comfortable doing on my own, it got pretty boring (not to mention this extrovert needs more social interaction). I’d started doing more contract work for one of my clients, which was nice because I had part time coworkers and some new challenges. But the environment is toxic, and the physical space awful (poor/no A/C, among other things). So I’m thrilled for this opportunity. I’ll probably transition a few clients to other firms, but I won’t even have to give up my entire practice.

  5. Shopping help! My wool coat has seen better days and I need to replace it with something warm and work-appropriate. To be honest, I’ve never loved wool coats because they aren’t that warm and attract all sorts of lint and nastiness, but the black coat seems to be a staple in my environment. Maybe getting something longer would help with the warmth factor? In my area, it’s not the temperature that’s terrible — it’s the stupid wind! I’d prefer to spend under $200.

    • Anonymous :

      Can you layer a thin down puffer under it? Or look for a wool coat with a primaloft liner. I think LL Bean used to have them?

    • Get a wool coat that is a cashmere blend or at least 100% wool; a lot of people buy “wool” coats that are only partly wool.
      Also, I think a warm hat and scarf make a huge difference. My mom gifted me a very warm cashmere wrap 5 or 6 years ago and it makes any coat I wear so much toastier.

    • It’s perfectly sensible to have a sleek puffy instead of a wool coat nowadays. I love the Sun Valley parka from Eddie Bauer. It’s 50% off now and comes in petites, plus and talls and it’s got a GREAT outer shell that really keeps wind out (I wear mine in Boston all the time. Highly recommend.

      They even have a fancy version that they just unveiled but it only comes in straight sizes so is not for me (I’m Tall).

  6. Does anyone have any good suggestions for a savory breakfast item to bring to a potluck this weekend? Most people seem to be bringing homemade masterpieces, and I’ve never had to bring a dish to a breakfast potluck before. What travels well and isn’t all that hard to make? Thanks!

    • If it was me, I’d bring a store-bought quiche because I’m lazy. But you could do something like mini quiches or a breakfast casserole? My new favorite breakfast dish (yes, I have one) is chilaquiles, but I don’t make them!!

    • Store bought quiche? Or home made quiche with store bought crust. I used to love making the bisquick quiche-like recipes.

    • I like to make a fancy fruit platter or fruit salad for breakfast events. There’s only so many variations of bacon, eggs, and croissants you can eat!
      But if savory is the way you’re going to go, I’d do this english muffin casserole. Add finely chopped green onion/chives and switch the cheddar for swiss if you’re so inclined.

    • Julia Child has a wonderful recipe for an egg, potato, and mushroom dish that is very easy to make (or adapt for simplicity) and will travel fine for a short distance.

    • These scones are great and you can make them in advance, freeze them, and bake day of. I get tons of compliments on them.

      Also love to make these little egg muffins but they probably would not be good unless hot/warm:

      Have not tried this recipe but it looks good and pretty simple to make:

    • Anonymous :

      Egg salad or avocado-egg salad sandwiches + bread + arugula or sprouts.

    • AnonInfinity :


      Something like this would be easy:

      I made a similar frittata a couple of weeks ago, but added bacon. I just cooked the bacon before crumbling it into the mixture. Then cooked the whole thing. It was great.

    • Sausage balls- bisquick, sausage, grated cheese. You can make a few dipping sauces if you are feeling fancy.
      Also, a platter of Chick-fil-a chicken minis is never turned down.

      • +1 to sausage balls from the recipe on the box (although I usually add some parmesan to fancy them up). If you do not want to make dipping sauces, grape jelly, pepper jelly, and either honey or jalapeno mustard all are good with them,

    • Wow, so many great suggestions! Thanks, everyone!

    • Anonymous :

      I make a lower calorie version of this:

      I use almond milk instead of whole milk, turkey sausage instead of pork (or a mix of turkey and pork), like 3-4 slices of bread instead of 6 (no need to cover the pan), and less cheese (you don’t need 8 oz).

      I find it’s better if you make it the night before. The recipe says it takes 40 mins to cook but it generally takes closer to an hour ime.

      • PSA this is the kind of thing I make for xmas morning. Put it together the night before. Stick it in the oven in the morning when everyone comes downstairs to open presents. My kids (and husband, my third kid) all attack their stocking candy first thing, so it’s nice to have a savory dish in about an hour to not have that sweets hangover all morning.

  7. I posted this on the mom’s page and a couple of people seemed to think it was helpful, so I am reposting here!

    PSA for anyone like me who did now know this – you can buy holiday photo cards on Amaz o n, delivered via prime. There is a 60% off coupon code today – my holiday cards were total under $40. No comment as to the quality, but the design looked great and I am just happy to not spend so much money on cards – I always thought it was a ridiculous amount of money (especially since I am normally paying for expedited shipping because life).

  8. This box is over C$36 on
    It would have made a great stocking stuffer for my husband, but not at over $4/bar after tax. Sigh.

    • I don’t know your Target situation in Canada, but I saw them in my local store today. Sorry if I’m adding insult to injury…

  9. May I get a chorus of “you only have to stay for 15 minutes,” please? My firm is one of many co-sponsors for a networking holiday party tonight and I’ve become the only person who can go. I just don’t want to, but I know I need to so that we have a rep, so “it’s almost over” words of encouragement are appreciated.

    • AnonInfinity :

      Yes! Pop in. Say hi and be seen for 15 m ins, then quietly exit.

    • Fingers crossed there will be yummy snacks and wine :)

    • anon a mouse :

      Go! Sometimes in these situations I set silly goals for myself. Like, you are staying until you talk to 6 people. Or you are staying until you talk to someone who tells a story about their dog. Or you are staying until you meet someone whose first and last names start with the same letter. Think of it as an anthropological exercise.

    • Not an Expert :

      It’s almost over! Seriously, the day is like almost over, and I’m speaking from the west coast. Getting there is the worst part. You can do it! You go, lady.

    • Give yourself permission to leave after 15 minutes and have your excuse planned and ready to execute, but if you end up having a nice time and good conversation, give yourself permission to stay!

    • Yes you can definitely just stay for 15 minutes. I did that this Friday in a very similar situation.

  10. Baconpancakes :

    The review earlier reminded me: I need to get a new moisturizer that plays well with other products. Something light but moisturizing enough for winter. SPF not necessary. Use for morning and night. I’m tired of my current moisturizer oxidizing in its huge tub before I can get through it, so ideally not in tub form. Recommendations?

  11. silly shoe question :

    I just bought some nude slingback heels that I’m excited about wearing for work. They seem impractical for winter, but were sold this time of year and I always change my shoes when I get to the office, so it kind of seems fine? Will I seem like I’m wearing spring/summer shoes inappropriately or are they okay for winter?

    • I wouldn’t wear slingbacks with hose. So this time of year, I’d probably wear them with pants, as I’m not bare-legging it right now. If you’re in LA, though, you’re probably bare-legging it all year so go for it.

      In terms of the color, they’re fine to wear in the winter.

    • Anonymous :

      They sound great and should be just fine to wear. Enjoy them–you will most likely get lots of compliments.

  12. Don't like Turkey :


    I made my first ever thanksgiving meal this year and I can proudly say it was a smashing success! However, I realized that once the turkey isn’t covered in gravy and cranberry sauce, I am not a fan of the way it tastes. I like turkey sandwiches and the processed stuff but I need ideas for the cubed, frozen leftovers hanging out in my freezer that will “mask” the turkey taste.


    • Anonymous :

      Turkey pot pie? It’s in a thick creamy sauce with veggies and a crust to serve as distractions.

    • Soup?

    • Turkey enchiladas, cold for sandwiches (I don’t think the flavor is as strong when it’s cold),

      I have this problem too, but luckily my mom loves leftover turkey so now she always has Thanksgiving at her house so she gets the turkey leftovers and the rest of us bring the other dishes.

    • Turkey tetrazzinni was the classic in my parent’s house growing up. These days The Hubs makes the mole and green olive enchiladas from Epicurious with leftover turkey and they are delish!

    • Plumerias :

      Being frugal by choice has a great turkey leftover casserole that turns it into a casserole version of a burrito bowl!

      I’ve made it twice and it was great!

    • Make chicken salad except with turkey. The basic is Mayonnaise, cubed turkey, chopped celery, salt and pepper and some thyme leaves if you have them, maybe some lemon juice to taste.

      A fancier chicken/turkey salad is curry chicken salad. I use the joy of cooking recipe and it’s freaking delicious but there are versions all over the internet.

    • Baconpancakes :

      I made a turkey pot pie soup with my leftovers that was great.

      Also, if you do decide to make turkey again, I strongly recommend this recipe – so incredibly flavorful. I agree most turkey is boring, but I think poached chicken is pretty bland too. I had to start the turkey frozen (mea culpa) in an oven bag, but after three hours I took it out of the bag and rubbed it all over with the butter mixture, and stuffed it with the apple, fennel, and onion, and poured the cider and chicken stock all over it, basting it with the liquid occasionally.

    • Baconpancakes :

      Posted a couple links, but got put into moderation.

  13. 80s prom party :

    I’ve been invited to a holiday party with an 80s prom theme (no, I don’t know why “holiday party” wasn’t enough of a theme). The host clarified with less than a week to go that guests are supposed to wear 80s-inspired attire.

    I’m going to wear a black cocktail dress for this. What can I do with accessories to look more 80s-inspired?

    • Rainbow Hair :

      Stick with me here… DIY puffy sleeves. I would take a tube of black fabric as long as my upper arm and basically make a scrunchie at each end, add black and another color (bright pink? teal?) ruffles at the bottom of each sleeve, and slip ’em on with your dress. Boom, Big 80s! Otherwise (or in addition), fingerless gloves in bright colors? A headband and leggings in the same color? BIG HAIR?

      Or go to the thrift store and see if you can get a poofy sleeved bolero?

    • Choker, hair gel, glitter, lots of blush, black hose

      • Black sheer hose with the seam up the back of the leg. Bonus points if you can find hose with the rosette at the back of the ankle. Big earrings and bigger hair. Bright blue eyeliner.

      • Anything by Gunne Saxe.

  14. Rainbow Hair :

    In a moment of (???) I signed up to bring Green Bean Casserole to a potluck on Thursday. And OMG I don’t wanna. One Green Bean Casserole/year is plenty for me.

    Is there any green bean -based alternative you can think of, so I’m not totally throwing off the veggie thing, but that isn’t the classic casserole I had initially intended to make?

    • If you want to stick with green beans, I made Tyler Florence’s green beans with caramelized onions and almonds for Thanksgiving and it was a hit. I’ll post a link.

    • Smitten kitchen’s green bean casserole is an out of this world experience. I did not fry my own onions though. I just bought the thingy of French’s (formerly Durkees)

  15. Anonymous :

    Totally annoying pop up ads. I stopped checking another site because it’s too loaded with these. Don’t make me leave you too.

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