My favorite hostess gift is to bring breakfast for the hostess for the following morning. This weekend I gave homemade coconut granola and strawberry rhubarb compote for yogurt. Amy was a bit of a show-off and knit a basket for the jars. Muffins, fresh breads for toast, European butter, fruit, coffee and tea are other tasty goodies for the basket.
Summer road trips are a great time to stock up on hostess gifts. A and D recently brought me yummy wine, olive oil and honey from a trip to Napa.
Planted flowers and herbs are a great alternative to cut flowers. The hostess doesn't have to run around looking for a vase and the pots themselves are awesome reusable gifts.
So, Annie Segal gave me my favorite hostess gift of the year. A friend of Greg's, I had only met Annie once before my dinner party. She presented me with a Valentine decal (well past February) stating, 'you never know when you'll need one,' a mini-bar bottle of Patron, a half burned pillar candle and a junky cellphone case. At first, I was a bit lost for words stammering a sorry 'thank you' thinking Greg had invited a real nut. When I realized it was a gag gift, I knew Annie was a cool lady. She said if we didn't think it was funny she would've known we weren't her types. She then gave us her 'real' gift: charming scarves from her own line. Each scarf features a word--love, courage, faith--so you can 'wrap yourself in a feeling.' Check them out at her website.