Beyond the Kitchen

Eat Boutique + Joy the Baker


What do you want for the holidays?  No… I mean what do you rreeeaaalllyyy want?

I used to ask for the moon and the stars for Christmas when I was a kid.  Back then ‘the moon and the stars’ were also known as an Easy Bake Oven, a Barbie Dream House, an American Girl Doll, and a New Kids on the Block sleeping bag.  Just so you know… I got that New Kids on the Block sleeping bag and it was just about the most amazing thing ever.

These days I’ve cut down on my list so much that… my list doesn’t even exist anymore.

If my current desires were to manifest themselves into a list, that list would be, um… expensive and annoying.  So I just don’t make one.  I want cashmere, and fancy fancy shoes, and really expensive eye cream, and one of those handbags that are so expensive you’re afraid to use it.  The moon and the stars.  Totally annoying.  This is why I don’t make a list.

Reality list includes things like:  a nice Christmas Eve church service with my family, my Dad’s Sweet Potato Pie, and a nice bottle of pure maple syrup.  That’s really all I need.

Now let’s talk about YOU!  What’s on your list?  Cashmere?  Tell me it’s cashmere.  Ooohh, cashmere.

I should tell you now that I do know a little bit about your list.  It’s weird, but I do. See…. your boyfriend really likes you.  Your husband thinks you’re amazing.  Your girlfriend thinks you’re totally major.  I know.  I totally know because your boyfriends/husbands/girlfriends email me (all the time and it’s totally awesome) asking me to help them hook you up for the holidays.  I seriously do love those emails…  Where there is an issue, I’ve created a solution.

The answer:  an awesome gift box!!  Allow me to elaborate.


This holiday season I’ve partnered with Eat Boutique to create a special gift for giving!  Have you heard of Eat Boutique?  It’s a Boston-based company headed by Maggie Battista.  Maggie is an awesome and kind knower-of-people-who-make-things.  She curates and ships really special artisan gift boxes.  It’s a great way to celebrate artisan makers from around the country.

I’ve joined forces with Maggie to create a  Joy the Baker Holiday Gift Box. (This is a one-time gift box unlike my previous partnership with Lost Crates.)  The Eat Boutique gift is thoughtfully wrapped and the items inside are beautiful and dang delicious.  I think the contents are stellar!

  • A signed “The Joy the Baker Cookbook: 100 Simple and Comforting Recipes”. Yep!  I’ll write all up in it!
  • An 8-ounce jar of Sweet Brook Farm Maple Syrup from Williamstown, Massachusetts
  • A 14-ounce bag of Marge Granola from Seattle, Washington.  I totally adore this stuff!
  • A box of 3 rich handmade caramels from Sweet Revolution Caramels in San Francisco, California

Sweet, right!?

All orders will ship after December 10, 2012. If you’d like to guarantee arrival by Christmas, please place your order asap and no later than December 14, 2012.

Orders ship all over the US, and boxes are able to ship to Canada at an additional charge (Canada orders should be placed by December 7th, please).

Also!  I’ll be in Boston (BOSTON!!!) signing books at Eat Boutique’s Holiday Market on December 9th.  I’ll be the girl that looks like she’s from California and refuses to take off her coat and two scarves for fear of frostbite.  I hope I get to meet you and hug your face!


Photos by Heidi Murphy/White Loft Studio.

Oh!  Maybe you want this gift for yourself, but you don’t quite know how to tell the cute new person you’re with exactly what you’d like.  Maybe you don’t know how to tell your Dad that you don’t want any more gift cards to Bath and Body Works.  I understand you…

I’ve got your back…. try words like these:

Hi Darlin’,

I know it’s totally awkward that we stared dating four days before Thanksgiving.  Now here we are in this awkward season of gifting.  You want to get me a gift, but you just don’t know me quite well enough to pick out a scarf I’ll actually like.  A Target gift card would, admittedly be… TOTALLY AWESOME, but kind of a bummer because I’ll probably just spend it on a house cleaners, cat litter, and a random bottle of nail polish.  I wanted to share this little gem with you in the hopes that we could make this season of new dating and new gifting easier on both of us.  Also… mixed tapes and pancake breakfasts are always appreciated.

Love, Me (it’s too soon for me to sign a letter with this sort of familiarity.)

Or something like this:

Dear Mom,

If you get Dad to buy this for me for Christmas, I’ll totally share the granola with you.

Love, your awesome and worthy child.