A Holly Jolly Holiday Gift Guide

A Chi Organic Girls Holiday Gift Guide

Is it just us or did the holiday season creep up on us like those giant spiders in the new Hobbit movie?  We’ve been feeling the adrenaline of the season, hitting the streets in our snow boots and clicking away with our mouses in a fury of gift giving.  OMGS Christmas is only 4 days a way!  The biggest dilemma we’ve been facing: How to find that one of a kind perfect gift for the foodie, fit fanatic or Chicago adventurer.  Holiday gift guide to the rescue!!

Do you have an artist in your life?  How about Grizzclay by Chuck Borchers, a Deaf artist who has been experimenting with clay for several years now at Lillstreet Art Center.  These one-of-a-kind bowls can make a great centerpiece for a new home or a fancy fruit bowl to liven up a blah kitchen.

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Grizzclay by Chuck Borchers

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Grizzclay by Chuck Borchers

Something for your highly caffeinated friends?  We recommend Bowtruss Coffee Roasters, located in River North and Lakeview.  One of Chicago’s bustling micro-roasters, their bean blends offer complex flavor profiles like cherry or apple undertones.  Read more about our experience at Bowtruss here.

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For foodies, check out recommendations of Chicago food experts (including ours) in the Chicago Food Bloggers Holiday Gift Guide.  For example, We love Vosges Haut-Chocolat, with boutiques located in downtown, Lincoln Park and of all places, O’Hare Airport.  Pick up a custom box of regional truffles (think Mexican coco dusted in chili) or an exotic chocolate bar, like the newly released Coconut Ash and Banana Dark chocolate bar.  For your veggie and vegan peeps, try Chicago Diner with a gift card for a tasty “I can’t believe it’s vegan” shake or have your friends rep their veg style with a Chicago Diner t-shirt.  Click here for more food gift ideas.

Fit Fanatics: For a yoga lover or to help someone get off their asana (haha) and get fit, gift them one week of unlimited classes at  Zen Yoga Garage (plus first-timers automatically get one week free pass with a coupon).  Learn more about this 2013 new hotspot here.

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Zen Yoga Garage

And for a more one-on-one fitness focus, how about some serious calorie crushing sessions with our fave certified personal trainer, Sabri Xhaferi, NASM CPT.  Sabri offers nutritional counseling, myofascial (muscular relaxation) techniques, and one-on-one highly individualized personal training with flexible payment arrangements.  Email sabriCPT@gmail.com and find more background info here.  You can also grab some healthy tips on his Facebook page.

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Sabri Xhaferi, CPT
Photo courtesy Ela Miszczyszyn

Oh and for fun fun fun person in your life: The Chicago donut scene has been rolling (like a rolling pin, get it?) this year.  For the fun chasing type, how about tickets to the first ever batter-y, deep-fried Donut Fest in Chicago on Jan 26th!  Tickets are on sale Monday, Dec 23rd at noon.  For more info  http://donutfest.com

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Glazed & Infused Donuts and Firecakes Donuts

Whew!  It’s time to break our the tape, scissors, and wrapping paper and get these gifts in the sleigh!

What are your recs for Chicago’s best gifts?  Where do you eat, sweat and play?

My Om My! Free Holiday Yoga with Lululemon Chicago

Admit it.  You deserve a break from the holidays already and those snowman cookies you’ve gorging on lately certainly aren’t relieving any stress.  Well, real holiday relief is on the way!  In the spirit of the season, Lululemon on Rush & Walton has wrapped up the gift of free yoga classes, ceremoniously titled “12 Days of OM”,  at a diverse set of Chicago based studios for all of us in need of a good Shavasana.  We did a test run last night for the 2nd day of OM at Yoga Fuzion.  Nestled in River North, Yoga Fuzion’s studio space has all the accouterments you would expect from the posh neighborhood.  It boasts infrared heating technology, free towel and mat rental, and a special cushy moisture reducing floor.  During our 1 hour yoga journey with Rachel, we delighted in some much needed detoxing twists (goodbye pumpkin pie!) and a toasty heated temp which was a surprise perk given the 20 degree freeze yesterday.

We sweated it up and still somehow looked glowy at the end.  Ok, so maybe we snuck a brush in our gym bags and tussled our hair a bit before the “op”.

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Yoga Fuzion in River North

Following practice, we chatted it up with Jonna from Lululemon and indulged in mango lemonade, cucumber mint water and fresh veggies.  She explained that class sign-ups are released each Friday and pointed us to the sign up link for “12 Days of OM” on Eventbrite.  Jonna presented us a special gift in the #nohumbug Lululemon tradition, a cute coral colored sweat wicking pink stripe tank for Monica!  ‘Tis the season for you to jump on the free yoga sleigh ride as well.  Check out the “12 Days of Om” schedule below, back away from the cookies and throw those capri and tank in your gym bag!  Next classes include Power Vinyasa Flow at Yoga Loft and Mat Pilates at Lateral Fitness.

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