Food La La Favorite Things: Holiday Edition


I’ve always wanted to be Oprah (for many, obvious, more important reasons).  But how fun would it be to gift your tribe with ALL your favorite things?!  As much as I love you, it’s just not in the budget this year (stick with me though, people).  So in lieu, I’ll share my secret sources and favorite products—for gifts and stocking stuffers—that light me up on a daily basis. 

 (And if you missed Food La La’s Favorite Things last year, click here for some tips on how to make any present extra special).



For the Fashionista:  Subscription to The Stylist LA

A closet full of clothes but nothing to wear!?  I love these people and this subscription service.  For $129 you can rent up to three items as many times a month as you want.  This has been a lifesaver when events, showers, and celebrations pile up and putting together another outfit quickly transitions from fun to a to-do.



For the Purist:  Organic Skincare & Facials with Gunilla Skin Alchemy

Earlier this year, with the wedding six-months out, I decided to invest in my skin (my “routine” had been water and coconut oil and I hadn’t had a facial since I was 12).  Overstimulated, I tried to buy all the products and Gunilla gently steered me towards just the two she thought would make the biggest impact.   

I use her face oils—all handmade with 100% pure, natural, and organic ingredients—every morning and night (a small bottle lasts me about 5 months).  I also love to use the oils when I’m running out and don’t want to wear makeup (i.e. almost everyday) because they give me a rosy, “I’m alive!!” glow.  If you have any friends or family expecting babies, her baby + mama products would be a great pick.

Her facials are amazing, too (and include a little foot rub—my favorite part!). 

Use code “foodlala” for 15% off her products and services (and free shipping over $75).



For the Hustler:  Massage with Ellie Van Doren

Ellie is a gem and I’m afraid to share her with you.  But Christmas is about the spirit of giving, right!?  During my catering days I nearly destroyed my body schlepping bags of groceries, pots and pans, and crates of wine all over San Francisco.  Ellie does in-home massage in San Francisco and is the best I’ve ever had.  She knows immediately what your body needs, and how to fix it (for me, it’s always my hands, feet, and lower legs, but for Chris it’s back and shoulders).

She even treats you to a little aromatherapy!

$125 for 60 minutes, $180 for 90 minutes (she’ll come to your home and bring the table etc.) To book, email:


For Rapunzel:  Ficcare Hair Clip

Truth:  I’ve had this clip for 10+ years.  I’ve always had long and thick hair, and this is the only clip that will hold it all up.  It’s even secure enough to do a light workout in (yoga or pilates) and won’t crimp your hair. (You can also find them at Nordstrom!)



For the Working Woman:  Rothys

These!  Cute, comfy, and made from recycled plastic.  AND, Meghan Markle wears them.  AND AND they’re machine washable!


For Everybody:  BodyGuardz Screen Protector

Most of you would laugh if you saw my phone.  It’s probably a prehistoric model (without looking, I honestly couldn’t tell you which one I have) and usually has at least one crack and a thin veil of powdered sugar.  It comes with a lifetime warranty (make sure you register it through their advantage program!) so if the screen protector ever chips or breaks, they’ll send you a new one for free (I’m on my third, and my precious screen has yet to crack!).

Stocking Stuffers:


For the aesthetically inclined:  Copper Spoons

These are just too cute for words.  One of my best friends gave them to me for a bridal shower, and I can’t help but leave them out on the counter.  ($28)



For the novice chef:  Sea Salt

The missing ingredient, always.  Maybe even gift this sea salt with a cute pinch bowl to keep next to the stove.



For the stressed: Dr. Teal’s Soaking Salts

These are a favorite for soaking my tired feet and body. I love the eucalyptus and spearmint one! Decant the salt into some cute glass jars for an even prettier gift!


For the novice baker:  Vanilla Bean Paste

Have you ever tried it?  It’s a thick, syrupy, concentrated vanilla paste that I think is even more flavorful than whole vanilla beans.  Substitute it 1:1 in anything (even a drizzle in coffee!), and it will be markedly better. 



For the homebody:  Good Earth Organic Spice Tea

You know this—I’m a tea gal.  Organic tea is important.  This is a favorite because it tastes sweet but there’s no added sugar. (They make an organic and non-organic version of this tea, so be sure to grab the organic!)



For the sweet-toothed:  Granola from Healing Home Foods

My sister found this and it is the best indulgence.  It doesn’t look like anything special, but omg, just trust me on this one. You’ll need at least two bags (one as a gift and one for yourself, because it’s not nice to give something that’s half eaten).                                              



For the jet-setters:  Gaia Quick Defense Immune Support

I know, I know. Vitamins and supplements for Christmas!? Woof. But (thanks to my brilliant big sister) - we swear by this stuff. Who has time to get sick?!  Not these gals, and I’m sure not you either.  Anytime we feel a cold coming or are just a little feverish, we’ll grab a bottle from Whole Foods so we don’t skip a beat.  But, of course you’re more likely to actually take it if it’s already in the medicine cabinet! 


For the millennial:  Scrunchies

I still have some OG scrunchies my mom sewed for me in the early 90s (zebra print, anyone?!) and am so glad they’re back.  I mainly sleep in mine, but you do you.  These Anthro velvet ones with a bow are super fun ($14.40) but you can also find great ones at Forever21 for under $2 (score).