Kiss the Barbecue Chef: Host & Hostess Gifts

Because Memorial Day kicks off the summer barbecue season….

Barbecue season is awesome.  It’s warm and everyone is able to enjoy a season of really great food.  So when someone opens up their home, try to remember to thank them.

Here are some thoughts:

Photo from Etsy Seller: Embroidered Stitches


A case of water or a couple of bottles of soda will do.  You can also go a little upscale and bring a bottle of wine or a case of beer (points for the hosts’ favorites).

If you want to be their favorite guest, bring two bottles or cases – one to enjoy at the cookout and one for the host/hostess to enjoy later.


I don’t know why I love this idea so much, but I do.  There’s nothing like seeing someone at the grill with a great apron on.  It’s handy and fun.  My favorite type of gift.

A couple of sites to consider:

  1. The Apron Place.  Has it ALL including a section just for men.
  2. Chef’s Closet.  Has the cheapest aprons that I found.  You can also embroider them.  If aprons are going to be your go-to gift for summer events, I suggest you buy in bulk.  If you’re crafty and handy with clothing paint, purchasing from this site also allows you to do your own thing with minimal investment.
  3. Etsy.  Etsy never fails.  


Because the hosts are typically running around – sometimes weeks before the event – all other activities often get put on the back burner.  So I suggest a gift card for dinner at their favorite restaurant or a movie gift card.  Something that can be enjoyed after everyone has gone home.

Be Inspired.



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Cheap, Fast and Good – You CAN have all three….

In my past life of planning conferences one of the biggest stressors was finding the perfect speaker gift.  In my personal life, this comes up again and again as I look for gifts for church and sorority event speakers.

This past weekend one of the ministries I serve on had an event with multiple panelists.  So on the hunt I went for nice (and inexpensive) thank you gifts.  Between Hobby Lobby and Walmart I was able to come through with cheap and easy speaker gifts (that only took me about an hour to put together – I promise).

Here’s what you need:

  1. A Small Glass Container ( Hobby Lobby had them for IMG_027050 percent off – about $1.25 per jar)
  2. Gift Tags (the hanging ones, not the sticky type)
  3. Candy (M&Ms or mints – but if you go the chocolate route keep the candy cool)
  4. Colored Markers or Pencils


All you have to do is clean the jars and drop in some candy.  The special touch comes in the gift tag.  Using your colored markers or pencils write a nice message on the gift tag.  Tie it around the jar and voila, a fun speaker gift.

Be Inspired.

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Because gifts should include a little kid sweat equity…

I’m a big fan of gifts.  But when it comes to Mother’s Day I get immediate throwback feelings to my childhood and the fun and creative exercise of making cards for your mom.  In school all we were given was construction paper, glue, and markers but somehow as children we all managed to make Mother’s Day magic.

So when it comes to this holiday I like to go a little old school and back to my kiddie roots with the adult benefit of letting someone else buy the materials and do the clean up.

I grab my nephew (the resident kid in my life) and head out for an afternoon of ceramics painting and lunch.  We usually visit Color Me Mine or All Fired Up.  But the good news is that there are craft centers in every state.

He picks out a gift for his mom, I pick out a gift for my mom (his nana) and we go to work.  I also do a little grown up magic and add in a gift card or two (from me).

If you’re looking for a great Mother’s Day gift idea and a way to occupy kids for an hour or two it’s a great option.  Just don’t wait too long – firing the ceramics usually takes about a week.

Be Inspired.


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