Dec. 3, 2020

The Presence of Presents + a Heartfelt Gift Guide

It's our time of year — the end of it! We really mean the time when what we strive for in our lives is truly celebrated:  grace, ease & joy. In planning this month's premiere, we reflected on last year's episode "The Presents of Presence," where we focused less on presents and a lot more ...

It's our time of year — the end of it! We really mean the time when what we strive for in our lives is truly celebrated:  grace, ease & joy. In planning this month's premiere, we reflected on last year's episode "The Presents of Presence," where we focused less on presents and a lot more about presence, because being present is in short supply at this busy time of year. Gennifer and Noreen share a meaningful conversation where we revisit the gifts that we had received that touched us deeply and raised our spirits. Our most cherished items ranged from "found items" given to us by a surprise someone to an incredibly thoughtful invitation for a once-in-a-lifetime experience.We reflect on the flow of generosity and gratitude and how difficult it can be, for women especially, to receive, resulting in blocking — even hoarding — that magical exchange of giving and receivingThen you're invited! We reveal items that have brought us either grace, ease or joy and are providing you with links on our site so you can purchase them for yourself, a friend, family member or maybe even a stranger.  Our authentically curated list of gift ideas is from both of our hearts as is our deepest blessing that your December is warm and bright.


Disclaimer: Everything we share here is for educational purposes. We are not providing medical, psychiatric, or psychological advice or treatment. Please seek out professional help immediately if you're experiencing any serious psychological or psychiatric conditions.


The Presence of Presents

Gennifer: We are your holiday helpers. We're excited to bring you a new episode today, which we're calling the presence of presents. Now, last year, we did the presents of presence.

[00:00:16] Noreen: You can see the difference. 

Gennifer: but we want to explain it further, which is that last year it was the gift that presents of presence with the CE.

[00:00:24] But this year we're talking about the presence of giving a gift, a present, the reason we started talking about this, Noreen and I, was because  we've had a lot of conversations about meaningful gifts we've received. and a lot of times these meaningful gifts really ended up being a tool of nonverbal communication to show someone that, you know, show you that you're being thought of, or someone really just knows you or just something very thoughtful.

[00:00:49]And, a lot of the times these aren't even gifts that someone spent a lot of money on or any at all.

[00:00:53] Noreen:  Or any at all, right, exactly…yeah.

[00:00:56] Gennifer:  When Noreen  and I were talking about this, we, we just started, um, sharing some really amazing gifts that we've received and I'm going to start actually with a gift that I received from Noreen, which to this day is…

Noreen You tricked me.

I tricked you, but, um, it's, uh, it was really one of the most surprising gestures of love. Um, I've ever received as a, as a gift from somebody and someone who didn't even know me that well, uh, yeah.

[00:01:21] You know, in terms of time, but clearly knew me very well.

[00:01:26] Noreen What is time?

[00:01:28] Gennifer:  Yeah. Noreen gifted me and experience, which was to go to the Omega Institute, which I had never been to. She gave me a gift certificate to go there. And the number was this lucky number or this number that I've carried with me for a while, which is an unusual number.

[00:01:45] It was just very thoughtful. And so when I received this  gift from Noreen, I honestly didn't even, I felt like I didn't even know what to spend it on at the omegas. Did I remember pouring through the

[00:01:56] Noreen: She was a kid in a candy shop.

[00:01:58] Gennifer: I was, and I was like, so precious with what I was selecting. I went through the catalog so many damn times, and then when I finally picked something, it couldn't have been more perfect, including the timing.

[00:02:09] So, um, I never honestly would have been to the Omega Institute. I can guarantee that at this point in my life, I still would not have been.

[00:02:15] Noreen: At that point, yeah. Oh, you think even at this  point?

[00:02:17] Gennifer:  Yeah, I think, you know, you opened a whole door for me going there, um, having that experience and finding new ways to get back there to have more experiences. So gifting me that experience and again, in a, in an amount that was so, um, particularly important to me… sacred.

[00:02:36] That was one of my most meaningful gifts. So I just had to start off with that one. You were so sweet. I'm still don't remember how or why…

[00:02:44] Noreen: Well, we were working together. I don't even, I I'm the worst, like I just move through things, so I don't remember details about a lot of things.

[00:02:53] Gennifer: It wasn't my birthday. It was for no reason.

[00:02:56] Noreen: Those are the best, even if it's holiday time, those are the

[00:02:59] Gennifer: They really, really are. They really are.

[00:03:02] Noreen: I wanted you to have that experience.

[00:03:05]oYou turned around and gifted me with two spruce trees, which I love in. I mean, I've just, I watched them grow and I take lovely care of them and they're beautiful in my backyard.

[00:03:18] Gennifer: And that was for your special garden.

[00:03:20] Noreen: That's true. And that's another thing that's on my list, but…

[00:03:23]  I don't know if should this be on my list? Well, it is right because we're talking about meaningful objects or meaningful experiences, I didn't and still don't come from much money, but when my mom passed, there was a little bit for everybody.

[00:03:37] And what I did was plant this garden that you just referred to it was a chance to redo my, my backyard and, you know, make it kind of a perpetual garden for my mom in her honor. And Gen graced, to me, quite literally with those two spruce trees that are there still. So that’s a double gift.

[00:03:57] Gennifer: And you were just working on those this morning, weren't you?

[00:03:59] Noreen: I was, yeah. So we'll have to share some photos. I put little darling Darby in the middle for a potential holiday card, once I realized I was trimming evergreens…

[00:04:09] Gennifer: Yay — she needs to be in everything. Segue from trees to other pieces of nature, that one receives if I may.

[00:04:16] Noreen: Please. That's a good transition.

[00:04:18] Gennifer: That's a good transition. I actually have two nature things. I'll spit them both out.

One is my daughter brought me back a rock that was very heavy from a beach trip that she went on with some friends. She gave me a rock that she found on the beach and her friends thought she was crazy. Like what?

[00:04:34] You know? And she was like, ‘You don't understand, she'll like this.’ And sure enough, I was like, you know, tears, joy. Like, ‘I love this rock’ you know?

[00:04:43] Noreen: A rock!

[00:04:44] Gennifer: Yes, exactly. I'm like, ‘I can't wait to put it with my other rocks!’

[00:04:46] She also brought me back this piece of terra cotta or something from Italy, which, I don't even know how that, how she dragged that thing around in her suitcase.

[00:04:54] Oh yeah, with a sunshine and a G that she put on it. Those are beautiful. But I mean, it really was, I was like, I can't believe you lugged this through, you know, up and down airplane stairs or whatever.

[00:05:06] and then the other gift I got once was… I was at a job I didn't love; I was very unhappy and I got this box of flowers delivered to me that were just beautiful fiery roses.

[00:05:19] They were orange with like red tips. And there was a note in it that just said, ‘Don’t forget. You're the baddest bitch in there. Signed, God.’ And by accident, 1-800 flowers damaged the vase, so these flowers with thorns and everything came in broken glass, and it was such a screaming message of —wake-up snap out of it!

[00:05:40] I know like the whole thing was like, wake up snap out of it. And it was anonymous. I actually did call one 800.

[00:05:45] Noreen: God is not necessarily anonymous.

[00:05:47] Gennifer: No, but I did, I did try to get to the bottom of it. And 1-800-FLOWERS got permission from the person who delivered it to me. And it was a special friend of mine who just was thinking of me.

[00:05:58] And, and again, it wasn't someone who's known me all my life or anything. It just, it was just an incredible gift. And to this day, that was really one of the top meaningful expressions to me, of someone thinking of me.

[00:06:12] Noreen: So lovely.

[00:06:13] Gennifer: Another one was, um, I just had my 20th wedding anniversary with my husband and because of COVID and various other things, we just were pretty low key about it, even though it's 20 years. And, you know, it was just very simple, which, you know, isn't totally out of character for us to be honest, but I went to Noreen's house to sleep over to record a great episode. Hopefully you heard the one with Ken Dashow…

[00:06:35] Noreen: Yep. Magic of the Beatles.

[00:06:38] Gennifer: When I came home, um, at some point I checked the DVR for something, and I noticed that the ‘Muppets take Manhattan’ was recorded.

[00:06:45] And I walked out to the living room and I said to my husband, ‘Did you record the Muppets Take Manhattan for me?’ And he said, ‘Yeah, I thought we could watch it together.’ And I just thought that was very cool. Like that was beyond…

Noreen: There’s definitely another 20 years in the cards.

Gennifer:  Exactly. I was like, okay, this guy gets me, he recorded for me and he's offering to watch it by the way.

[00:07:07] We did watch it. And after a few minutes, I remembered that I actually hate that movie, that it. Yeah, it was like this. I was like, ah, this is why I can't get through it. You know, it's not the first one. It's just not, we agreed on that, but we had a good, yeah. I mean, there's, there's later Muppet movies that I liked, but that one is, I don't know why just terrible to me.

[00:07:28] So that was funny. I've never seen any of The Godfathers. We could have a whole episode…

[00:07:34] Noreen: just, well, there's a whole thing about the second episode of movies not being the best. And you have to get to the third and beyond.

[00:07:42] Gennifer: I don’t know, Grease 2 is pretty damn good.

[00:07:45] Noreen: Oh, come on now. That's a different episode.

[00:07:48] Gennifer: [sings] ‘Cool Rider.’ Exactly.

[00:07:52] One more gift that I wanted to share that was meaningful for me You know, someone expressing something that was unexpected. And, and I, I just really loved was, um, my mom and dad took my son and his friend away for the weekend up in Vermont.

[00:08:07] And they came home and my son had gotten me a gift, which was very, not like him to get me something.  It was a little music box that played when you wish upon a star, which is not something I talk about a lot that song, but that song has always been like, uh, like in my heart, like it just, I could cry from it to me.

[00:08:25] It it's so emotional to me. And the fact that he, you know, thought of me got me this and this particular song was just mind blowing. So that's, that's also by my bed with my rock from Remi and my remote control, reminder of Muppets take Manhattan.

[00:08:41] Noreen: Remote control. That's really funny.  Her nuclear unit of gifts.

[00:08:47] Gennifer:  Yes. I know. Those are all very meaningful. How about you Noreen? Do you have some, special gifts?

[00:08:53] Noreen: I there's one thing that comes to mind… if you're a regular listener, you know I'm pretty close with my siblings. And I did go on this little road trip with a friend of mine up to Woodstock to this, um, really special crystal store. We were getting someone a gift and we talked, you know, in our Crystals 101 episode about how certain stones and minerals, et cetera, will call to you…

[00:09:20] And this was, a boutique. I mean, she had an enormous amount of crystals  as you already know, if you listened to that episode, I'd like to do a sweep of a crystal store, you know, so I did my sweep. Yes. And this corner just kept pulling me over and pulling me over.

[00:09:35] And I was, uh, discerning which of the stones in the corner. And it turned out to be this extraordinary stone, which is about, um, four or five inches long. And it's almost like, you know, a naturally made diorama. It's called a shaman stone and it looks like, you know, a regular, you know, honed stone on the bottom, but it's polished quartz on the top and inside it's like another world is in there.

[00:10:03] It's really beautiful. Um, but it was expensive. It was in the $200 to $300 range… I don't even remember specifically any longer, but my budget just, wasn't going to absorb that at the time. And I, you know, deliberated and I considered, and the stone kept calling me over and I was like, I'm sorry, not today.

[00:10:22] I'm here for this other purpose and I don't have it. So I left and I came home, told my sister about the stone. Within a week, a package showed up and it was the stone and she had bought it for me.

[00:10:34] Gennifer: Oh my God. That's so sweet!

[00:10:36] Noreen: I know, it’s so sweet.

[00:10:38] Gennifer: But I’m not surprised. You guys are amazing with each other.

[00:10:41] Noreen: She’s very generous. She's incredible.

[00:10:42] Noreen: So yeah, and I still have that stone and I just, I just love it. I mean, it's really a powerful stone, so

[00:10:49] Gennifer:  That’s so sweet. As soon as you opened it, what did you do?

[00:10:52] Noreen: Called my sister. ‘You’re crazy!’  Yeah, I mean, it's such a beautiful, generous thing. It's in my bedroom, on my altar where a lot of my most potent favorite stones are. And I just, yeah, I love it. I'm always a little, little careful. Well, and the kids pick that one up, you know, like I let them do it, let them explore, but have one eye like, or one hand, like, ready, ready to go, ‘cause it's really special. You know, not only was it a stone that really wanted me to adopt it,

[00:11:22] you know, then my sister facilitated that. So I love that stone and I love my sister — and my brothers, but.

[00:11:29] Gennifer: I was just thinking about what a gift that must have been for her first in ordering it, right? Like just secretly ordering it. That must've been like a gift of joy for her, just knowing she was doing this special surprise for you. And then as a bonus gift, getting the phone call, hearing your voice I would imagine that those two were also gifts, you know, from you back to her really.

[00:11:47] Noreen: Well that's, I mean, that's an interesting point, right? So much of this is about generosity and gratitude and that circle, right? Of giving and receiving. I used to do a women's group, um, in person. And I think we're going to move that to online next year. But one of the things that I used to talk to them a lot about was.

[00:12:08] There's a lot of people, particularly women in our community that are givers and they love to give, but they really aren't receivers. They don't know how to be gracious in receiving a gift. And we used to teach and talk about how they were arresting the flow. Yeah. And in some ways it's, it's unintentional obviously, but it's a selfish act to want to hoard all the giving for yourself. In yin yang and in flow in general, you receive and you give, right?  As you just pointed out, so, you know, poetically when you have given somebody something and you've realized that it's hit the mark, it has created that meaning and resonance that we're talking about today, you receive that heart swell in return.

[00:13:04] And so, again, it's not ever about the dollar amount. It's about, you know, that swell really.

[00:13:11] Gennifer: Yeah, the, the, energetic love or [Noreen: Exchange…] that you're giving somebody. It’s a great point about the receiving part, especially for women. I know so many of us, self included, really struggle with that. And I know this year, I, I finally made some breakthrough last month around my birthday.

[00:13:29] As you know, um, where I was finally allowing that to happen and it ended up being the greatest birthday that I can ever remember, because I wasn't blocking that from happening.

[00:13:40] Noreen: You know, and it's interesting. I think this transitions too into… again, we're really specifying that this isn't always, object and purchase-oriented, but when you know somebody's intention with, with a gift, you know? Even if it's not a full bulls-eye target, you can still have that receptivity and that openness and that generosity and, um, gratitude.

[00:14:05] So I'm thinking of another gift. My mother's best friend gifted me with a gold bracelet after my mom passed. And I'm actually not much of a jewelry wearer, but that was not the point at all. I mean, I still treasure this; it's also on my altar. And she wanted me to have it because, in her words and in her experience, I hadn't been recognized enough in my

[00:14:34] life with my mom, I guess, you know, I'm the oldest. And there was some dynamics involved in that situation. So she just wanted me to have this gift of value, you know, that this gold link bracelet.  And it was so beautiful. I mean, it was just such a… such a… I'm trying to obviously trying to find the word…

[00:14:58] Um, but it was um, ‘cause it's way beyond generous. It was like this, um, in a way, acknowledgement, but it was almost like a rite of passage in a way, you know, that there was this and, you know, we talked about, there are times when we get gifts for rites of passage. So maybe that's exactly what I'm talking about.

[00:15:19] yeah, but she just wanted to acknowledge that. And she never said anything about it again.

[00:15:28] Gennifer: That's so transformative. And, and as you were saying, even just a rite of passage. Yes, there’s many times where you get like a gift because you graduated high school or you get, you

[00:15:36] Noreen: Yeah.

[00:15:37] Gennifer: a wedding  gift or something like that. And a lot of times…

[00:15:39] Noreen: It's funny. Those are supposed to have meaning and they don't always have meaning…

[00:15:42] Gennifer: That's exactly what I was going to say.

Noreen: Oh, so sorry!

Gennifer: No, no, no, no. I mean, that's, I agree with you.

[00:15:47] When we were preparing for this episode, even, and I was trying to think of gifts I got that I loved. One of them, which was gift given to us for our wedding was a Scrabble game on a lazy Susan, like that's perfect. That's so perfect!

[00:16:00] Noreen: For watching while the Muppets Take Manhattan.

[00:16:02] Gennifer: Exactly I know. Going back to what you were saying about, um, this rite of passage it's it was like this, um, it sounds almost like it was also this, I don't want to say permission… I don't know what the word would be… I guess you did say it. It's an acknowledgement of who you are and what you've done, what you've accomplished and who you are because of it.

[00:16:23] I mean, as you said, it was like a small gesture, but wow was that huge! I mean, that's just really. I don't, I don't know that many people that can say they've had that kind of, uh, exchange really.

[00:16:33] Noreen: Hmm. I mean, my mom passed away about eight years ago. And she still checks in every so often and actually in a, not reciprocal, ‘cause it wasn't quid pro quo, but I recently found an image that my mom. Well, it was like a little poem in a, in a sketch that my mom had done in her journals and I scanned it made some prints and sent it to my siblings and to my aunts.

[00:16:59] And she called me so excited, this aunt; all my aunts did. But this one was like, she, she had recently expressed how much she was missing my mom. I'll decide, to be honest listeners, if we'll post this or not, but it's this beautiful, almost childish, primitive drawing of an angel with a little prayer about how, you know, angels watch us and bless us, and that kind of thing.

[00:17:21] And it's just cute. And if you know, you knew my mom, you knew that this was signature of her, pun intended. It's just a little memory, you know, it's an infusion of her. So again, that costs me, what, 79 cents to make probably 10 prints, you know? And, and I sent them out in little frames and, and, you know, it was just a little touch point for everybody to not only, remember how important our mom, my mom was to all of us, but in this time where people haven't been able to see each other and connect and touch and all of that, it was just a little link.

[00:17:52] Gennifer: Hmm. That's really sweet. I love that. And, and again like that exchange of, of giving people this treasure and it is treasure that you, have that piece, I know it's something so small and simple, it seems, but you being able to deliver that to people who missed her or just needed that

[00:18:12] reminder or boost is such a beautiful exchange.

[00:18:16] Noreen: Yeah, it's just a little boost. That's a nice word for what a gift ought to be, you know? It's a little boost, because I think sometimes, I know I've had earlier periods in my life where I've assigned waaay too much meaning, or too much heft I should say, to gifts, right? Like people didn't get me ‘cause they gave me this thing, you know.

[00:18:37] and that's what we're wanting to share with you guys today is like, hopefully move past that and see the intention behind the gift.

[00:18:45] Gennifer: Yeah. Think you're a hundred percent right.

Noreen: I have to share with you my Christmas gift from my youngest nephew last year. Which just made me just like, you know, warm heart feels all over the place, and also like, one in receiving this gift, but two, in remembering, like, do you remember when there was a holiday festival at your school and whether they had candles or whatever, the, like when you first got that taste of having a dollar or 50 cents, 75 cents, whatever.

[00:19:17] Gennifer: You're talking about your first taste of gift-giving.

[00:19:20] Noreen: Right? Your first taste of gift to giving. Yeah. It goes back into that — you are entering that cycle of giving and receiving. You've been receiving as a child all that time. But anyway, getting back to my nephew, his school had a little holiday fair. And it seems like what they did was parents donated a few objects that, you know, a little bit of our forthcoming decluttering episode… What is it? One man's trash is another man's treasure, right?

[00:19:48] So literally that, and anyway, he gave me this gift and he said, do you like it? Her name is Lenox. And I opened up this little bag and it was wrapped a little figurine in tissue paper and it was a little, I guess, a golden retriever in a tub of water as if it was taking a bath with a rubber ducky. And it was adorable.

[00:20:12] And there was a post-it on it that said Lennox, somebody had handwritten Lenox on it. And then I looked at the bottom and it was a piece of Lenox. If you people are familiar, it was bone china. And he was adorable because someone had tagged it as Lenox. And he said, ‘that's the dog's name!’

[00:20:30] Lenox. Oh my God. It was so cute. It's on my kitchen counter. It's one of my greatest treasures. And right next to it is this little polymer clay figurine that he made of my previous dog Baxter. My little nephew is very creative and very talented. He's 11, but he had the detail down so well, like Baxter had a white tip tail.

[00:20:56] You know, it's there. He was, he was a fawn-colored dog. So the dog is, you know, appropriate color and he had like three of his four paws had white socks. So those are there. And he, my nephew, started to talk to me about how much effort he put into getting the eyes.

[00:21:12] Right. It’s just adorable. Nothing could be better.

[00:21:16] That's so sweet. I mean, well, we have to show, if you're okay with it, we have to show these pictures on Instagram.

[00:21:21] Noreen: Yeah, there are visual tableaux.

[00:21:24] Gennifer: Yeah. That's just a beautiful gesture, you know, that he wanted to be a part of remembering Baxter.

[00:21:30] Noreen: I love the Lenox story. I mean, it's just so cute again, it's like the first time you're able to, join the giving as well as the receiving cycle, and the fact that he thought, you know, he doesn't know when Lenox china is.

[00:21:41] Gennifer: Hmm. That's so cute.

[00:21:43] Noreen: So the dog is named Lenox. What about you, Gen? Any other meaningful gifts you want to share?

[00:21:50] Gennifer: Some gifts that I had a lot of joy putting together for others, were both actually around my parents' respective 60th birthdays. For my mom's 60th birthday, Facebook was really just beginning to become a big thing. So what I did was put together a scrapbook of notes from people from her whole life.

[00:22:09] And my dad helped me. He even helped track down the art teacher that they both had when they met, they met in her art class. You know, just giving her this giant birthday card, if you will, from people throughout her life, it was no easy feat. And it was just like, it was just so much fun putting it together.

[00:22:27] You know, again, I imagine I had like a similar experience like your sister did in getting that crystal where it's like this secret thing happening. And I'm just having so much fun knowing that I'm going to just surprise, someone in a way like this. So that was cool. And then for my dad's 60th birthday, again, this is a while back.

[00:22:43] So this, before we had Spotify and everything, but purchased 60 songs from iTunes that reminded me of him. And then I created 60 liner notes to go with it, to explain why I chose these songs. And some of them were songs that I, you know, either I knew he loved. Some of them were just the most random song, not most random, but like one of the songs that's my favorite that's in there It was a memory.

[00:23:03] It was him driving me to this girl Tina's slumber party. I know literally which house we were driving past and on Z-100 Duran Duran's "Hungry like the Wolf" came on and he turned it up and he's like, you have to hear this. This is awesome. And he introduced me to Duran Duran, which became one of my favorite bands of all time.

[00:23:19] So it was just like this really fun gift I put together and you know, what did that cost me? 60 bucks? A dollar a song, but just so much thought went into it. And I really feel like I almost got more of a gift out of putting it together maybe than even he did in receiving it, but it, you know, it just meant a lot to me.

[00:23:35] Noreen: That’s so cool.

[00:23:36] So, as Noreen and I have been talking about gifts and gift giving. We thought it'd be fun to break down some gift ideas or, items under three categories, which tie back to Your Practical Magic.

[00:23:47] As you know, our, goal is to help you lead a life of grace, ease and joy. And in this case, we're providing some favorites you could, gift yourself or gift to others, that also fall in these categories.

[00:23:58] And we're going to share this out in our newsletter and,  if you haven't subscribed to our newsletter, please go to  right now, and subscribe so that you don't miss out on a lot of things that you're not hearing about.

[00:24:11] Noreen: We're transitioning into our annual now — our first annual gift guide.

[00:24:18] Gennifer: Sure. When I was thinking about grace and, and thinking about things that helped me get centered or helped me, you know, not, not involve ego, what kind of gifts could do that? And how could I not start this off with the books from Eckhart Tolle, “A New Earth” and “The Power of Now,” especially “The Power of Now.” In both those cases, he really talks a lot about being present, how much you can recognize when you're bringing ego into something. The advice that he shares in that, in those books are truly one of the greatest gifts I've received in the last couple of years.

[00:24:57] So I put that under Grace. I personally got the audio book, ‘cause I'd like to listen to it while I was hiking. So again, a gift for myself of, you know, having my own time.

[00:25:07] Noreen: 00:25:07] Hey, there's nothing wrong with that, right? These are gifts you can share, and these are gifts you can self-care.

[00:25:12] Gennifer: Exactly. So I liked the audio books, Eckhart Tolle is just really very helpful. If you're trying to find a way to add more grace into your life.

[00:25:21] Noreen: So my grace picks are starting with Palo Santo. We mentioned this in our crystals 101 episode, but you can get a little box of Palo Santo for like $10, maybe less, and you could get pieces for less, for sure. And it literally translates into holy wood and it has the sweet scent and has the same effects as sage does for clearing a room, but it burns slower.

[00:25:50] I just love the smell because it just transports me right back to the Southwest. And it's just, it's really beautiful. And if it was a gift that you wanted to give, certainly just a little box of Palo Santo is a beautiful gift, but if you wanted to pair that with a beautiful bowl or an abalone shell, which is often used with sage.

[00:26:08] It's a great thing because it becomes sort of an incense holder.   A piece of Palo Santo wood is probably about three inches by maybe a one-inch diameter. So an incense holder

[00:26:27] Gennifer: That sounds so nice. Actually, after that Crystals episode, I did get a little bit ‘cause you guys were talking so much about how great it was

[00:26:35] Noreen: Did you smell it yet?

[00:26:36] Gennifer: My God. Yes. It was like I was back in Santa Fe, which is one of my favorite.

[00:26:37] Noreen: It's so great.

[00:26:42] Noreen: Totally. And it's so grounding it just like, I can smell it right now and it's already working to bring me like back in my body. I love it. And then the other thing I was going to share is, a favorite of mine.

[00:26:53] We haven't actually had an Oracle cards episode and we probably should. Yeah. ‘Cause, you know, we have decks galore combined, but one of my absolute go-to's is by Alana Fairchild.

[00:27:09] So you guys might be familiar with her. She's got many decks and they're all beautiful and they're very, very potent. But one of my absolute favorites is the Mother Mary Oracle deck. I love the artwork and the meaning of the cards is just again, so powerful.

[00:27:24] So prescient, another favorite of mine is the Kuan Yin deck from Alana Fairchild. And there's a Rumi deck. There's a Sacred Rebels deck, which is great. If anyone wants to get ahead of things, you can actually, pre-order the Kali deck, which is coming out in January. So that's going to be kind of powerful and exciting. I'm in on that.

[00:27:45] Gennifer: What is that exactly?

[00:27:47] Noreen: Kali is a Hindu goddess.

[00:27:48] Gennifer: Oh!

[00:27:50] Noreen: So it's again, harnessing divine feminine energy. But she's the badass Hindu goddess and she is the destroyer. Some people actually are, frightened by her visage. But the whole idea is to just get the things that have been hanging you up and keeping you stuck; she blows the doors off and it's to make room for liberation.

[00:28:11] She represents an extraordinarily powerful form of shakti, to make energy move.

[00:28:17] Gennifer: I love that. Okay. That's a great gift for and moving into the new year. I love that.

[00:28:24] Noreen: Yeah. So those are my Grace gifts.

[00:28:27] Gennifer: It's funny, you mentioned Oracle cards because the decks of cards I have were both given to me by as gifts. I forgot that.

[00:28:33] Noreen: It's a beautiful gift. Yeah. Yeah. It's a fun one for that resonance and meaningfulness that we're talking about, because there are so many options you can really tune in, to what's appropriate for the person you're giving.

[00:28:45] Gennifer: I'm excited now. Noreen is giving me so many ideas personally. I already spent my money. Okay. So now we're moving into ease and I'm going to start off with, I really. Really take great pleasure in smelling soaps, okay?!

[00:29:02] Especially shower gels, bath gels, because you know, for me being in the shower is probably the only, five minutes I get to myself period. It's always guaranteed. No one's going to be in there but me! And I get to smell these beautiful soaps. And it's just, I don’t know, it's like this little retreat for myself, so I really probably go above and beyond excitement about bath gels.

[00:29:21] One of my favorite brands is Molton Brown. It's a little bit on the higher end of, bath gels, but

[00:29:30] the scents are just to me, beautiful. They don't, smell, fake or chemically or anything like that. One of my favorite ones, eucalyptus has been discontinued, but for winter. I love that eucalyptus one because it was like a warming eucalyptus.

[00:29:45] It just made me feel really nice. But the ones that I do love, especially for winter, because they are also warming, but because these 2 cents in particular are supposedly for aromatherapy, um, uplifting. So if you get kind of bummed out by the cold and the dark, these are some nice things you can even do at night.

[00:30:03] So one of them is orange bergamot. And the other one is a geranium scent. And both of those just make me at ease with the world, at least for the few minutes that I'm showering. Yeah.

[00:30:16] Noreen: That’s awesome. I know the black peppercorn is fan favorite.

[00:30:20] Gennifer: That's a good one. I don't think they have a scent that I wouldn't love.

[00:30:23] They're just all they really are nice. Another ease… I don't know but I'm going to say Amazon Prime. And the reason I'm going to say Amazon Prime is because a couple of things,  on most basic bitch level, um, you know, you get stuff delivered quickly to your house and that makes my life easy, ease easier.

[00:30:43] But the other thing that I love about it is there's all these perks that come with it, at least that I enjoy, like Audible, for example. I get all these, you know, credits I can just download books or meditations. They have just so much stuff. And because of it almost feels like free gifts, even though I know I'm paying an annual fee for Amazon Prime, but

[00:31:02] it just offers these, you know, additional tools, additional ways to, kind of tune out and tune into something that does bring me ease. And a lot of times I do use those credits for things like the Eckhart Tolle book I just mentioned, or something that's going to make me laugh, something that just makes me feel good. So those are my, those were my two "Ease."

[00:31:24] Noreen: That's awesome. So, I do want to ask you, what does ease mean to you? Like easy, right?

[00:31:29] Gennifer: I mean, I think when, when I think of something that brings me, is  it's either easy…

[00:31:32] Noreen: Not a lot of effort.

[00:31:33] Gennifer: not a lot of effort and, at ease.

[00:31:34] Noreen: Yeah. Effortless.

[00:31:36] it makes me feel AT ease right? Okay, cool. It's at ease or effortless. Okay,

[00:31:43] Gennifer: Yes. So, so both those things put me at ease.

[00:31:46] Noreen: Good for us to know what our tagline means.

[00:31:49] Gennifer: How about you? What makes you feel at ease?

[00:31:51] Noreen: Well, yeah, I was thinking about, you know, ease as what, makes things effortless, right? So… This might seem like a strange gift. And I guess it depends on the people in your life, or once again, absolutely, you can either share or use for self-care. But the first thing I'm going to say is this product called 8Greens.

[00:32:13] I discovered this earlier in the year and I had started taking it because I wanted to kind of up my nutritional game. And then of course COVID happened, and I was like, let me buy more right now before they run out. So it’s this kind of Alka-Seltzer type of tablet and you take one a day, you put it in about eight ounces of water.

[00:32:34] I use filtered water from my fridge, and it's just a great way to start the day. It's great for your immune system. It's a really researched conglomeration of eight greens: spinach, wheat, grass, kale, blue-green algae spirulina… I don't know how to say this properly… Is it chlorella, cho- cholera… not the disease, so… Hm,

[00:33:00] Chlorella… is that a thing you know of? Okay, so chlorella, barley grass and aloe vera, and it just makes doing something daily for my immune system. It’s so easy. Like it just worked itself into a routine. So simply for me, and you can, buy a sample pack because the original flavor is lemon lime, which I really like.

[00:33:22] They also have blood orange and they have a third flavor that's come out now, so you could buy a variety and you could just sample it. But I feel the difference and I get it knocking wood, but haven't gotten ill — that I'm aware of. So, so that's my first one. My second one… I started to think again about effortlessness and what makes things easy.

[00:33:45] And I think having a certain degree of organization has made my life easy. Like I've put a few things into place so that I don't stress. Like I always know where my keys are… I always know… like I do certain things so that you can kind of streamline things. So I wanted to recommend this rolling. Three- or four-tiered metal cart you can get.

[00:34:09] And I just love it because they're multi-purpose and they come in really fun colors. I have a bright red one, and I also have a charcoal gray one, and you can buy a top for them as well. So the top shelf can also be a surface. So I love them. I think once again, maybe it sounds like a strange gift, but if you were to put a plant in there or, or nothing…

[00:34:29] I mean, you know, you don't have to do anything, but it's a nice gift if, you know, if it's appropriate for somebody, they are multipurpose and you can get one for $35

[00:34:40] Gennifer: Yeah,

[00:34:42] Noreen: So, those are my “Ease“ gifts. Those are my recommendations.

[00:34:46] Gennifer: I love those. I love this variety that we're putting out there all these things are things you can gift to other people or yourself,

[00:34:52] Noreen: You know, the other thing I'm going to throw in a third, I'm sorry. The other thing that I was thinking about that I wanted to share with you was a laptop desk because we're all home and we're all everywhere. And, you know, figuring out the whole house has become an office. And so, you know, just a place to make that surface is that you need and things aren't sliding or falling off, but you can repurpose almost anywhere in the house. There's a really cool one on Amazon called LapDesk, because it has like the little bar for your laptop to not slide off, but it also has compartments for your phone and for a beverage. So just keeps everything kind of, everything grounded.

[00:35:31] Gennifer: I’m laughing because every single thing you've said I now want.

[00:35:35] Noreen: That's the purpose of a good gift guide! Links are going to be on our webpage for everything we're recommending, so please, please shop us. And we should just mention, like full disclosure, we have joined affiliate programs, so the links will make us a couple of pennies and not cost you anything, so if you’re a YPMer and willing to support us, we’d love for you to visit our site and click on our links. Thank you.

[00:36:01] Gennifer: Yes, and that's a gift for us for our ease, because that money will be able to go towards getting someone else to help edit these and take some other things off our, our plates, so we can use our brains to build our community.

[00:36:12] Noreen: And just pay for all the software we use.

[00:36:13] Gennifer: I know exactly; all our office expenditures. Let's talk about Joy.

Noreen: Bring it!

Gennifer: Joy, joy. Okay. So this does tie back a little bit to some gifts that were thoughtful.

[00:36:25] The first thing I'm going to talk about are socks. Okay. I have a certain brand of socks that I've received from people and they have messages on them, again, at times when I needed these messages. And the brand is called Blue Q, I have a pair that says, Nah I’m gonna stay you guys.

[00:36:42] I have a pair that says this meeting is bullsh*t. I used to wear those on Mondays. I have a pair that has pictures of people, like all these girls dancing, and it just says, ‘Me when my song comes on.’ So it's just these socks that just make me happy.

[00:36:57] Noreen: Those are radiant circuit socks!

[00:36:59] Gennifer: Yes, exactly. And I also have a couple other pair of socks, not from blue Q,  and I can put them in our links too. Actually, I don't even know where they came from because they were gifted to me. One from Noreen that say ‘Home, tweet home’ with birds on them and you know how I feel about that!

[00:37:18] I kept a pair of them, I can tell you who made those.

[00:37:19] Oh right? You'll have to let me know. We'll, we'll put that link up. And then another, company that,  products from this company make me so happy. And again, it started as a gift that I received from some friends that had a ring made up for me that said manifest cool  know I curse a lot and we might have to bleep this out, but it's from a company called Snash Jewelry, S N A S H.

[00:37:40] And they have all kinds of, um, like brass rings and, nameplate necklaces. They have a lot of really cool things to choose from, but you can also have them custom made as my friends did with this ring.

[00:37:51] Noreen:  Yay. So one of the first things I wanted to share with you guys might not be, I'm sure it's a gift. I mean, I've given this gift to my nephews before. It's not the cheapest thing on our list, but man, does it bring joy! It's a mini trampoline. I have one in my in my bedroom. I definitely got the one with the brace.

[00:38:18] I haven't used it, but I wasn't sure, so I got that. It ups my heart rate so much that I haven't gotten even to doing like a full half hour or 40 minutes on it yet. But there are YouTube workouts that you could just pick and go along with, or you just jam out and throw a song or two or three, like grow your playlist.

[00:38:38] bouncy list and just get in there and just jump. From an energy medicine standpoint, you're draining your neural lymphatic system, which by the way, as we've said, it doesn't have a pump and so needs manipulation to drain. So that bouncing helps drain that thereby keeping you younger.

[00:38:56] And again, that's not a, a laboratory research-oriented quote, but there has been studies done. And there are anecdotal reports that all of that lymphatic drainage helps keep you young. And obviously another one for radiant circuits, they bring joy. So that makes sense. And, great for just lubricating your joints and keeping arthritis and creakiness at bay.

[00:39:19] Gennifer: That sounds nice too. And fun.

[00:39:22] Noreen: Yeah,  you're doing this great fun thing, even for honestly, even if you get started with one song for three minutes, you're making headway and you're making a difference and you just add on as you can. So that's the first one I wanted to share with you. The other one, I wanted to share this thing that makes me laugh every time I use it.

[00:39:40] And I'd love to use it with friends, They're Korean sheet masks for your face. They are available on, Amazon in a set of six, but, there's multiple ways you can pick these up. So don't feel like you have to go to Amazon, so they have different purposes, but when you, if you guys are familiar with these Korean sheet masks, you know, you take it out of a pack, you place it on your face and there's, holes for your eyes and nose, mouth.

[00:40:04] But these are different, treatments have different

[00:40:07] animals, right? So one's an otter, a tiger, a llama. Um, what else? Panda, of course, cheetah. There's a bunch of them. I saw one that was a mermaid. I haven't tried the mermaid myself. Maybe I'll have to get it to go with my socks. I don't know. But anyway, these are just so funny.

[00:40:26] Sheet masks are already hilarious. You walk around feeling like you're Jason. So to put a big old, funny animal face on it is just fun. And then if you have a couple of friends over or, you know, your kids or whatever, and you're all sitting there for the 10, 15 minutes in these, you know,

[00:40:43] Gennifer: in your animal mask

[00:40:44] Noreen: Otter face

[00:40:45] Gennifer: That's funny.

[00:40:46] Noreen: they're just fun It's an affordable, fun thing. Like I said, the one I noticed, Is 10 bucks for six of them, so great stocking stuffers and that kind of thing. And you know what, once again, I'm stacking the deck and throwing in a third, I wanted to share, homesick candles as a way to bring joy in this year that has been.

[00:41:06] A little low, the joy quotient has been hit this year So these homesick candles, available online, Amazon, et cetera, I think they existed before March, like BC has a new meaning, but yeah, B.C.

[00:41:22]There's different sense that are, you know, ranged from like beach cottage to New Orleans, to New York City, to Northern California, Hawaii. There's a whole collection. If you haven't been able to be at the place that brings you joy, you can get a little part of it and just spark it with a sense of smell.

[00:41:45] Gennifer: I can't imagine what the smell of New York City would be, but that sounds great. What are

[00:41:56] Noreen: I thought you might ask, it is a combination of jasmine, sandalwood and grapefruit  and someone said that absolutely has an accurate hit about the smell of New York City.

[00:42:00] Gennifer: It's funny, ‘cause when you mentioned that I was thinking of something that's always struck me since I was a kid is, in the morning how much it smells like bacon, coffee and newspaper.

[00:42:09] Noreen: That actually would smell pretty good.

[00:42:12] Gennifer: I wouldn't mind a candle that smells like that. That's true. Yeah.

[00:42:15] That's funny. Oh, those are nice gifts. I like that.

[00:42:18] Noreen: Yeah. those are my Joy-full recommendations. I was going to throw gardening in there too. Like a cool set of gardening tools because…you know…

[00:42:25] Gennifer: No, I mean, absolutely. I agree with you. I mean, that's, you know, even just giving someone a plant that they’re hopefully going to be able to nourish and take care of. No pressure!

[00:42:35] Noreen: Exactly. Silk ones are great too. Even if they're not ideal feng shui.

[00:42:38] Gennifer: Yeah. True. I love it. That's our collection. And that's our collection for this, but again, we're going to go into even more detail in our newsletter gift guide and online,

[00:42:48] Just keeping in the holiday spirit, I wanted to add in,

[00:42:54] One of the greatest gifts that we receive at Your Practical Magic is feedback from our listeners, which we do get, in various places, we get personal emails from people. We get, people go into and recording a message for us. Yup. But what's really one of the greatest gifts is when someone takes a moment to leave us a review on Apple Podcasts.

[00:43:17] And I have to tell you that every time someone leaves us a review on Apple Podcasts and the bell rings, an angel gets its wings. So I just wanted to throw in, that incentive that if you guys really wanted to give back,  if you feel like we give you a lot and you want to give something back, that would be one of the greatest gifts you can give us.

[00:43:35] Ding, ding.

[00:43:36] Noreen: We will be deeply, deeply grateful. Thank you.

[00:43:39] Gennifer: Yeah,

[00:43:40] Before we go, we just wanted to remind you that, previous guest, Majestic Hudson, they have given us a code, YPM 2020, which you can still use till the end of the year, if you wanted to get any gifts from their shop.

[00:43:52] And then I wanted to talk about next week, we have a really great interview with a woman who has an organization company where she helps you declutter and organize. Which is really going to give you some great tips of things you can do in between Christmas and New Year’s; that down week where people don't know what to do with themselves and have tissue paper everywhere…

[00:44:12] Well, she's going to give us some really nice things that you can do physically and how that really impacts you inside too.

[00:44:18] Noreen: All right? Our friends…

[00:44:19] Gennifer: Thanks everybody. We hope you enjoy this. We'd love to hear if you guys have gifts that you love too, please chime in. We want to hear,

[00:44:25] Noreen: Yeah. Please share!

[00:44:26] Gennifer: Instagram, Facebook we're on Twitter, definitely go to your practical and you'll find out everything we're doing.

[00:44:33] Noreen: Thank you so much. Have a wonderful beginning of December we will meet you again here soon.

[00:44:40] Gennifer: yay.