Sunday, February 1, 2015

Five Favorites: My Christmas Presents!

Well, the holiday season has come and gone and I have finally gotten around to actually enjoying the wonderful gifts that were waiting under the tree! I know people usually post about gifts before the holidays  when the recommendations could actually help someone out. I personally am a great fan of Cup of Jo's Gift Guides, especially this bike bell with fun sound effects which I plan to get my sister Zelda for her birthday (to the eternal disservice of all pedestrians on the streets of Rotterdam). However, being more talented at the gift-receiving portion of the festivities, I thought I'd share my favorites now, in great gratitude to the givers and in the hope they may help you if you ever find yourself in need of present ideas for a twenty-two year old medical student who likes to cook, read, travel, and get gifts.

1. Cartoon-a-day, Medical Edition. Super funny and almost always right on the money. So many of these daily cartoons put a  hilarious spin on situations I experience with patients almost every day. Others are just cool in their random ridiculousness. These exist for lawyers, teachers, and several other professions as well, so whatever your loved one does from nine to five, this is a fun and easy way to brighten their workday.

 2. Citrus press. 
It seems Karl's Mom is attempting to increase our Vitamin C intake! No, in all seriousness, this was one of the sweetest presents we got. A couple months ago, we were having breakfast at my boyfriend's parents' house and I commented that their orange juice was just delicious. It turns out they fresh press oranges every morning with this easy machine.  I always thought juicers were complicated and messy and impossible to effectively clean so I was overjoyed with this thoughtful gift. It's easy to use (even for technologically challenged me) and rinses out in ten seconds flat. Plus you feel fancy having fresh juice for breakfast on a weekday.

Pilgrimage by Annie Leibovitz
3. Pilgrimage by Annie Leibovitz. This is a wonderful gift from my mother which I will treasure forever. It's a beautiful book, a pleasure to leaf through-- and its biographical essence adds profundity to its aesthetic character.  Leibovitz photographs places she visited on her own account, not on assignment, connected to people that interest or inspire her. She travels from Thoreau's Walden Pond to Old Faithful to Monticello, following the footsteps and stories of Emily Dickinson, Charles Darwin, Eleanor Roosevelt, Georgia O'Keeffe, Annie Oakley and Ansel Adams among many others. She captures Virgina Woolf's writing desk and Sigmund Freud's couch, seamlessly connecting the banal beauty of the physical object and the enormous significance attached to it.  Liebovitz herself said of the project, " was an exercise in renewal. It taught me to see again." Believe me, once you buy this book you'll also start to see in a whole new way.

4. Awesome Pencil Sharpener Carrot Peeler. Adorable. 'Nough said.

5. You Come Too, by Robert Frost. This was a gift from Papa, who shares my poetic soul. A great find for all Frost fans, this is a collection of his poems selected and curated by the poet himself.  My favorite has always been "Acquainted with the Night" but I've been reading a poem before bed every evening and loved yesterday's ("The Birthplace"), he so eloquently evokes a sense of cozy homes and carefree childhoods. It's great to explore and be exposed to more work by one of my favorite authors. 

What was the best gift you got this year?! I'd love to hear your favorites!

Look up at the Sky!


PS. Five Things No One Knows About Me

PPS. More "Five Favorites" here, here, and here


  1. My favorite gift I got for Christmas this year was a food processor. I have been wanting one for ages.

  2. All great gifts. I really love the Annie Leibovitz book. I didn't even know it exists but all of the sudden I need it! Lol!

  3. Pilgrimage looks amazing- I would absolutely love to read it- those are some great gifts- enjoy!