How To Get All Your Holiday Shopping Done in a Single Day

Saturday, December 1, 2018

Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by Pinecrest, with whom I am partnering for a holiday series. 
I have been compensated for my writing, but as always, all opinions are my own. 

One of my November goals was to finish all my holiday shopping before December even started. I'm happy to say I accomplished that goal by employing a two-pronged tactic: snapping up some handmade items over the course of the summer & fall, as I spotted them, then doing a final gift push at Pinecrest, a new mixed-use district in Orange, OH - about 20 minutes from me.

I am not one of those people who loves shopping & wants to do a ton of it, so I love places like Pinecrest, where I can do it all at once. This year, Hanukkah starts December 2nd - hey, that's tomorrow! - so I really needed to get things done early.

What stops were on my list? Some of the best! Here's how to make a perfect shopping day of your time at Pinecrest.

Fuel Up for the Day
Start at First Watch, an Ohio-based breakfast & lunch chain that opens bright & early at 7am. I've been trying to be healthier these days, but let's be real: I am particularly enamored of their Million Dollar Bacon, hardwood smoked bacon with brown sugar, black pepper, cayenne, & maple syrup.

Look at a Little Bit of Everything: 
I wrote about Laura of Pembroke a few months ago, after I attended their grand opening, & I've been back a few times since to pick up wedding gifts for friends. It's the perfect spot for hostess gifts & the like, so it was definitely at the top of my list of places to stop this holiday.

Laura of Pembroke has a gorgeous holiday display up - both Christmas and Hanukkah are represented! - & as always, they've curated a beautiful array of gift items.This is the perfect mother-in-law spot... or the perfect buy-something-for-yourself-while-you're-at-it spot.

Grab Gifts for Your BFFs
Pinecrest is full of independently owned women's boutiques, the kind that are perfect for grabbing gifts for your friends or your mom or your cousins or your sisters. I won't tell you what I got for my sister-in-law, Maggie, or for Mike's cousin, Clare, but suffice it to say I did plenty of wandering & left with more than a few goodies.

The Pinecrest store marks Thread's third location. Their grand opening is this weekend! 

Vernacular has five Ohio locations, plus one apiece in Texas & Georgia. 

Blackbird Fly recently relocated from its original Ohio City location.

Gracy Lane also has a location in one of my favorite NEO small towns: Kent, my alma mater! 
Do the Corporate ThingPinecrest is home to a Pottery Barn, a West Elm, & a Williams-Sonoma, which I just learned are all owned by the same company - which means they all use the same rewards system! I stopped into all three, picking up a couple of ornaments for Mike's & my Christmas tree (including a small, beaded menorah) & a couple small gifts for both him & my mom.

I signed up for their rewards program to earn 3% back in rewards - & with sales factored in, a $100 purchase went down to less than $80. Deals, y'all! (P.S.: How is everything in those stores so darn Instagrammable? That is some skill.)

Taco 'Bout it Over Lunch
The new Condado Tacos is now open at Pinecrest, & I can't believe I'm telling you to go there instead of Shake Shack, which is down the road, but... y'all, Condado is freaking delicious, & if pressed, I've gotta go with a locally owned chain rather than a national one.

Yes, Condado has feels similar to another particular local taco joint - but if I'm being honest, I like it a little better. It's bigger, so I feel less claustrophobic, & everyone who works there is so nice - & ohhh, the food. Their elote queso is the best I've ever had, & I love how many vegetarian proteins they offer, including Thai chili tofu & BBQ pulled jackfruit.

P.S.: Take a selfie in the bathroom, obviously.

Stock Up on Stuffers: Sweeties Big Fun
This spot is a hybrid of two beloved local brands: toy store Big Fun, whose Coventry shop closed earlier this year, & b.a. Sweetie's, a massive candy emporium in Old Brooklyn. Together, their new location features all things quirky, jokey, & sweets-based, like old-fashioned & unusual candies (Strawberry Whoppers, anyone?), pop culture-themed card decks, a myriad Mad Libs options...

Mike & I keep our stockings chill, but I did grab a few goodies to include in his on Christmas Day. And the week before Thanksgiving, I popped in here & bought a pack of drinking cups featuring different noses - so when you take a sip, it looks like you're wearing some weird nose on your face. Hilarious, right? OK, I thought so!

Get to the Love Shack, Baby
I'm betting my husband won't read this blog post, which is good, because I'm about to tell you about one of his other stocking stuffers: a gift card to Shake Shack

The Pinecrest location is the only one in Ohio, so the lines are always long - & even though I was still stuffed from Condado, it was a struggle not to want to eat a second meal at Shack Shack, one of my all-time faves. They even have a Christmas cookie-flavored milkshake! 

Pay Tribute to Our Great State
My father-in-law did both his undergrad & his dental degree at Ohio State - sorry, sorry, The Ohio State University - so I headed to Homage to grab a gift for him. 

All I can say is that it's scarlet & grey, as is the custom of our state, even for those of us who have never set foot on the OSU campus. Homage has everything you need to, well, pay homage to the Buckeye State. 

Donut Worry about Calories
OK, so I didn't get a milkshake at Shake Shack, but I did end my trip with a visit to Duck Donuts' first & only Northeast Ohio location juuuust to see what it was like. 

I asked an employee for her recommendation & went with it - vanilla coconut - but then added Christmas sprinkles. You guys, have you ever had a warm donut? No? Well, you've gotta have a warm donut.

There are plenty of other places at Pinecrest I haven't yet checked out, including gyms, a movie theater, a gorgeous spa, a spankin' new Whole Foods, & a restaurant with a bowling alley. Do I need to go back? Big yes. Anyone wanna go make candles with me soon at The Candle Studio

OK, OK, that was a really long post, I know. If you made it this far (did you make it this far?), hugs & kisses & an A+ thumbs-up to you. At the end of the day, I was proud of myself for knocking out all my holiday shopping before the holidays started - & before December even began.

Now, all my goodies are hiding in a big box in my office, waiting for the next big feat: wrapping them all. Dun, dun, dunnnnnn.

Where do you do your holiday shopping? What's your favorite stop at Pinecrest? How much do you love Shake Shack? 

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