Miss A Columnist

Lisa Beth Miller is the Entertaining & Weddings Editor for Miss A. She has been involved in the wedding industry for several years. Lisa is a bridal consultant and director of marketing and public relations for Blush Bridal Boutique and an event designer at Main Street Weddings, both local wedding businesses. In this capacity, Lisa writes the blog, website copy, and promotional materials for these businesses and assists with event planning. She was formerly a bridal consultant and did marketing and public relations work for A Formal Affair Bridal and Formalwear Boutique and was the creator of their Bridal University workshops. Additionally, Lisa teaches English, journalism, and photojournalism classes at Liberty High School in Bealeton, Virginia. She advises the school's award-winning publications, Talon yearbook and Patriot Press newspaper. As junior class sponsor, she also assists in planning Liberty's prom. Lisa has written several published articles. These include an article about advising student publications for Accents (Southern Interscholastic Press Association’s journal),an article about the royal wedding for Northern Virginia Magazine, an article about local proms for Warrenton Lifestyle magazine, and four stories about wedding planning and wedding fashion for the 2012 Northern Virginia Bridal Guide. Lisa holds an undergraduate degree in English and journalism education from Millersville University of Pennsylvania and a graduate degree in education and library science from Longwood University.

Charitable And Stylish Holiday Host And Hostess Gifts 2013

As we approach the holiday shopping season, the Miss A  Haute Hostess ladies wanted to share a few of our favorite holiday and gift ideas with our readers. These gifts and ideas are perfect for family, friends, or that occasion where you simply need a thoughtful gift for the hostess! We hope you are inspired! Enjoy.

We will start with some fabulous ideas from Brittany!

1. OneHope California Merlot Gift Box Duo -More than 34 million people are living with HIV/AIDS and 30 million people worldwide have already died from the disease. OneHope works with Keep A Child Alive to do their part to provide medicine, food, and shelter to the children and adults fighting this horrific disease. For every two cases of Merlot sold, a child with HIV/AIDS is provided with life-saving medicine for one month. $49.99

One Hope Wine

One Hope Wine

2. The Five Stripe Board (cutting board) – This handy cutting board is a must-have for every kitchen and proceeds benefit Would-Works, a charity that gives back to the impoverished and homeless. $81

Five Stripes Board

Five Stripes Board

3. Cuyana red ipad case – Before you get someone an iPad case from the Apple store, consider Cuyana’s Argentinian ostrich embossed leather iPad case. Giving this helps provide others access to clean water through charity:water, a non-profit dedicated to implementing clean water solutions in areas of greatest need. Cuyana works with local artisans to offer high quality products that are high on both form and function quotients. Cuyana “rejuvenates communities by supporting small business, micro-industries, craftsmanship, and local water projects.” $65

Cuyana red ipad case

Cuyana red ipad case

4. Tory Burch Foundation Double Wrap Bracelet – Great style, great cause: Wrap your wrists in this Foundation Double Wrap Bracelet. Made of glossy patent leather and dotted with our gold sunflower logos, it’s an accessory that adds a little tomboy chic to your look. All profits from the purchase of this item benefit the Tory Burch Foundation, committed to providing economic opportunities to women and their families in the United States. $95

Pink Patent Foundation Double Wrap Logo Stud Bracelet

Pink Patent Foundation Double Wrap Logo Stud Bracelet

5. LUSH Charity Pot – Inside every black pot of Charity Pot is a whole lot more than a creamy body lotion to hydrate parched, dry skin. Of course, it’s filled with the finest ingredients, including Fair Trade organic cocoa butter, and made by hand with love. Not to mention the gorgeous fresh, ylang ylang floral fragrance. What makes it so special? Every penny (yes, every single penny) that you pay for a pot, excluding the tax, goes to fund and support grassroots charities all around the world. You end up with softer, floral-scented skin AND you’re doing a world of good with every pot purchased. 5.95-$22.95

LUSH Charity Pot

LUSH Charity Pot

Next up, we have some grand ideas from Stephanie. Stephanie took a different approach and came up with some charitable holiday ideas. These could all be easily incorporated into your family’s holiday traditions, plus these ideas will demonstrate a spirit of kindness. Isn’t that really what the holidays are all about?

1. Holiday gifts that give back: Have the teens or children in your family research and select a charity. Ask everyone in the family to donate at least $1 to it.

2. Host a children’s craft for a cause party: Have children participate in a creative acts of kindness by having them make cards for soldiers overseas or make stuffed animals for a children’s hospital.

3. 25 days of paying it forward: Based on the 25 days of Christmas concept, challenge friends and family members to do small random acts of kindness during the holiday season. Have everyone record and share their acts of kindness to inspire one another!

4. Holiday gifts with a cause: Have everyone request one gift item that supports a specific charity. Discuss the charity and why it is important when gifts are exchanged.

5. 12 volunteer opportunities during the holidays: This idea is similar to a  “12 days of Christmas” countdown and involves creating a list of ways to get together with friends and have fun while volunteering with holiday spirit.  A few ideas include caroling at nursing homes, participating in an angel tree instead of gifts for each other, feeding the homeless.

OK, finally here are some ideas from Lisa, the Haute Hostess Editor (that’s me)!

1. Good Cards: Good Cards are the gift certificates of the philanthropy world. You set the price; recipients pick the charity. Perfect to have on hand for those bosses, co-workers and clients for whom you need a gift. Love these!

The Good Card

The Good Card

2. Pedra Coasters: This classic RabLabs design, named after the Portuguese word for “rock”, makes an ideal host or hostess gift. In ancient times, agate was thought to possess incredible virtues, protecting its guardians from all dangers. Each coaster is lovingly hand-polished in Brazil, and protected by rubber feet on the underside. This is a natural product; no two coasters are alike. $68

Pedra Coasters

Pedra Coasters

3. Greyston Bakery Do-Goodie Fudge Brownies: If you’ve had brownie-studded Ben and Jerry’s ice cream, you’ve tasted Greyston Bakery’s fudge treats. But did you know the bakery, which provides jobs to the disadvantaged, also sells its decadent Do-Goodie brownies at retail and gives the profits to charity?

Baking takes place in a state-of-the-art facility conceived by the renowned designer Maya Lin and completed in 2004 on the banks of the Hudson River. Here, the Bakery is a force for self-transformation and community renewal, offering on-site training and fair wages and benefits to more than 65 local residents, regardless of their work history.

Consistent with their social mission, profits from Greyston Bakery support the Greyston Foundation’s community development initiatives, including low-income housing, childcare, health services, and technology education. $25-$35

greyston bakery do goodie fudge brownies

Greyston Bakery Do-Goodie Fudge Brownies

4. Green Floral Silk Journal made by Artisans Association of Cambodia: This Green Floral Silk Journal is the perfect place to record your thoughts on fair trade and eco-friendly development—or just jot down your to-do list. The journals are bound in a luxurious silk floral print; silvery gray flowers against an olive backdrop give an understated yet elegant effect. This product was ethically sourced and fairly traded. A proud member of the Fair Trade Federation and Green America, Global Goods Partners works with women artisans who would not otherwise have access to export markets, offering economic opportunity for them, their families, and their communities. $25

Green Floral Silk Journal

Green Floral Silk Journal

5.   Laura Mercier Bonne Mine Compact Colour Palette: This fabulous “shop for a cause” item is a perfect make-up collection in a palette, designed by Laura Mercier. 100% of the profits are donated to the Laura Mercier Ovarian Cancer Fund. The scoop on this palette straight from Laura Mercier herself?  “I am so excited to introduce the Bonne Mine Healthy Glow for Face & Cheeks Crème Colour Palette. This ultra-sheer, blendable palette was inspired by my work with celebrity clients, who wanted a universal compact that would “wake-up” their skin and give them an immediate healthy glow. From bronzer, to cheek colour, to glow, it’s easy to customize your look. I love the finished effect – skin has a natural “no make-up” glow that looks soft and sun-kissed. I also love the portability and ease of this compact…and I know you will too!” $48

Laura Mercier Bonne Mine Compact Colour Palette

Laura Mercier Bonne Mine Compact Colour Palette

 

Happy Haute Hostess holiday shopping season, everyone! 

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