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Chilled Soups for the Dog Days of Summer

Here in the Pacific Northwest this summer, we broke the record for the most consecutive days above 90 degrees. It was hot. Sure, the PNW doesn’t have the humidity of say, Chicago, but here’s the clincher: because it never (ever) gets hot in Portland, virtually no one has AC. So a lot of the things we normally do here suddenly become impossible – and there is NO WAY any of us are going to be turning on the stove or oven to make dinner. Now that it’s late August, what do we do when the mercury is still rising? You gotta think cool to be cool, people! From the GiftTree kitchen, are four perfectly palate-pleasing chilled soups for the dog days of summer. GAZPACHO Just like a great salsa or pasta sauce, the right recipe for gazpacho is a thing of beauty. There are hundreds of variations of gazpacho, but the general rule is that perfect gazpacho should have the right ratio of tomato flavor and a little bit of heat. I’ve aways been obsessed with Le Pain Quotidien’s version – the red wine vinegar, sourdough breadcrumbs and cilantro pesto drizzle make it truly special. If you get the chance to try Le Pain’s gazpacho, make sure they dress it with a garnish of radish, cucumber and mango for you. Trust me. If you want to make it yourself for dinner and avoid a hot kitchen, this Malibu Kitchen recipe is pretty great (especially if you can do the red-pepper-roasting on the grill outside!).   VICHYSSOISE Yesterday was a particularly hot (and smoky, from all the nearby wildfires) one....

International Business Gifting

At GiftTree, international business gifting – sending professional gifts overseas – is easier than ever. Call our Gift Advisors today at 800.379.4064. Let us help you create a gifting experience that’s above and beyond. Internationally Inspired Gifts If you’re currently out of the country and looking for a business gift to send to the United States, look no further than our Business Gift Collection. Our gourmands and designers are constantly spanning the globe, seeking out delicious fare and wine to put into our keepsake baskets. Shipping Gifts to Europe At GiftTree, shipping gift baskets to Europe is as easy as 123. We offer fast shipping, a simple checkout process and a great selection. From champagne to chocolate and caviar, the only  decision you’ll have to make is which perfect gift to send. If there’s an executive, partner or client in Europe that you want to impress, trust GiftTree. We’ll send a gorgeous gourmet gift to Europe without a hitch.   Shipping Gifts to Canada When it comes to sending gourmet gift baskets to Canada, GiftTree’s selection of Canadian gifts can’t be beat. The collection of fare is enough to impress any professional. Our Canadian business gift program is full of impressive offerings. Be remembered for your generosity!  ...

Meet the Founders of GiftTree

Meet the Founders of GiftTree and enjoy this insightful interview.  Justin Bayless the President & CEO of Bayless Healthcare, is the host of a YouTube Channel and Podcast called Relentless Mentality. What is the meaning of Relentless Mentality? Justin Bayless explains: “Relentless is commonly defined as oppressively constant, determined, showing no abatement of severity, intensity, strength, or pace. I believe that relentless is an ethos. You’re not stopping until you get what you want. You’re not taking no for an answer. No obstacle will deter you from your goal. Relentless Mentality is where we get to tap into the mindset of change agents, leaders, and icons. My hope is that their stories inspire and motivate others to transform their mentality in their profession, their personal life, and ultimately their communities.”  On his YouTube channel and podcast, Justin recently sat down with GiftTree’s founders, Craig and Esther Bowen, to talk about the company’s storied beginnings, the successes and struggles of working together as a couple, and building GiftTree into a global brand.   Relentless Mentality: An Interview with the Founders of GiftTree   When much ado matters, leaving a lasting impression is the cornerstone of the GiftTree mission. When you send an exclusive gift from GiftTree, you’re sending so much more than simply a basket or a box – you’re sending a gift with...

Why We Gift Wednesday (Relaxation Day Edition)

Welcome to Why We Gift Wednesday! Each week, we celebrate one of the thousands of reasons that we truly love giving. Whether it’s honoring the relationships that we have, feeling grateful for an occasion or a special time of year, or relishing life’s simple joys, Why We Gift Wednesday is all about giving and generosity – the expression of appreciation for life’s many happy moments. Since today is National Relaxation Day, this Why We Gift Wednesday is all about chilling out! Looking for New Ways to Relax? We asked some of the GiftTree staff for their favorite relaxing activities! Here’s what they said: Getting a Massage or Doing a Spa Day at Home Watching a Baseball Game Going to a Yoga Class Taking a Walk Around the Neighborhood Having a Bonfire with Friends and Family Enjoying the Patio at a Local Brewery Getting a Manicure & Pedicure Opening a Bottle of Wine with Friends Gardening Reading a Good Book with a Blanket by the Fireplace Cooking Dinner or Baking Something Sweet Watching the Grandkids Play in the Backyard Stand-Up Paddleboarding at Local Lakes and Rivers When do you truly feel relaxed, and what are the steps you take to get there? Do you take a cool drink and a good book out to the patio, or do you head to the spa? Before all the back-to-school madness starts, this might be a great day to do something that’s just for you. No matter what you do to relax, we hope it’s surrounded by the things or people you love the most.     Looking for Gifts that Pamper? Feast Your...

Unbox Unique with GiftTree

A big part of what drives us here at GiftTree is that extraordinary moment when a gift is first opened by the recipient – the presentation. As our founder Craig Bowen puts it, “It’s that first experience when you’re opening up the box. We really want to deliver that wow. When they open up the gift, they should really feel something like, ‘somebody went to a very special effort to make sure that we received something very memorable.‘” Presentation matters. From the satin ribbons that we hand-tie to virtually every gift, to the note card with your personal message,  to the exclusively designed gift boxes, to the complimentary scissors to help open your gift – these are the considered details that truly make a GiftTree gift basket really memorable. If you’ve never received a GiftTree gift basket or you’re sending one and wondering what that grand reveal will be like, take a look at our new unboxing video – Unbox Unique with GiftTree!  Unboxing Your GiftTree Gift Basket   Explore our collection of gourmet gift baskets, fine wine, personalized offerings and so much more at GiftTree.com. We’re certain that you’ll find a gift that celebrates the special occasion in style, and leaves a truly lasting...

How To Determine Your Business Gifting Budget

While it seems relatively simple, giving business gifts is actually a pretty complicated process. How much is too much? You want to make a great impression, and stay on your client’s mind. But gifts that are too lavish and over-the-top? Big no-no. Gifts that are understated? You run the risk of looking cheap or being unmemorable. Finding the balance of a remarkable gift at a great price point can be tricky, but not with GiftTree! Our Shop by Price and Business Collections offer perfect gifts at many different price points. But first thing’s first: here are three helpful tips on how to determine your business gifting budget. Know the company’s gift-giving policies. Don’t risk the embarrassment of having to take back a gift because it violates a company’s policies. Before you give, familiarize yourself with these business gifting ground rules!   Consider the value of your relationship with your recipient. This helps figure out who should be on your list and how much to spend. If the net on a client is a  small amount per year, a gift with a high price point isn’t a financially wise move. But those clients who give you annual business of six figures? They deserve gifts that communicate the appropriate level of appreciation.   Give what you can realistically afford to give. Look at your overall budget and how many people you’re buying for, and make a conscious decision to give strategically. Which employees, partners and clients are most important to your company? One rule-of-thumb for always impressing executives is to spend from $100 to $1,000 per gift. And a great idea for leaving...

Summer Spa Day at Home

Next Wednesday, August 15 is National Relaxation Day. Pretty good timing, we’d say – it’s one of the last days of the year before the back-to-school chaos begins. One of our favorite ways to relax is a summer spa day at home. And here at GiftTree, our collection of spa gifts makes it easy to do just that! Here are some of our favorite spa offerings. Whether you choose to treat  yourself to a little pampering or send a gift to someone who deserves a break, our spa gifts are sure to take the stresses of the day away. Especially when it’s so hot and sticky outside, feeling fresh and clean is a must this time of year. Onward! Beautiful Bestsellers Bath & Body Invigoration – This refreshing spa kit contains an award-winning set of travel products from Burt’s Bees, along with a complete spa bucket with all the tools you need to pamper the body from head to toe.   Hydro® Luxury Spa Experience – An aromatic, nourishing experience inspired by Scandinavian tradition of long therapeutic soaks in an outdoor spa. This set contains herbal face and body essentials and exfoliating deep-cleansing soaps. The Man Can – Men deserve a little pampering too, don’t they? With spicy shave gel, a bay rum aftershave, heavy duty hand butter and more, he’ll be feeling so fresh and so clean in no time. It all comes in this quirky paint can, too!   Nourishing Newcomers Luxe Bubbling Bath Crate – This celebration calls for a little bubbly – a bubble bath, that is! The floral perfume of rice flower is paired with southern...

August Birth Flower: Gladiolus

Did you know every birth month has its own flower, and each of those flowers has its own dedicated meaning? It’s believed that the Romans began this tradition, and the Victorian era also brought floriography, the language of flowers. Gladiolus is the birth flower for August, and for good reason – the vibrant and tall gladiolus flower reaches peak bloom in high summer. August Birth Flower: Gladiolus Did you know that gladiolus gets its name from Roman gladiators? Standing tall, gladiolus mimics a gladiator’s sword, which is why it’s called sword lily, as well. Much like the gladiators and those born in August – those confident Leos and hardworking Virgos – gladiolus symbolize strength and integrity. Most importantly, gladiolus sends the message that they’ve pierced the giver’s heart with passion. In a range of color from orange to white, you can give gladiolus to someone special with a birthday this August.      GiftTree’s fresh flower bouquets are never delivered in the box, leaving the recipient to find a vase, trim and arrange the bouquet themselves. Our expert florists are located all over the country, arranging bouquets in glass vases and delivering them in perfect condition. Want to know the other months’ birth flowers and their symbolism? Here’s a quick guide to glance at! Check back on GiftTree’s blog every first Monday of the month over the next year. We’ll be featuring that month’s birth flower as well as showing you our beautiful bouquets that feature the blossom. Month Flower Symbolism January Carnation Devoted Love, True Friendship February Violet Faithfulness, Virtue March Daffodil Affection, Regards April Daisy Innocence, Purity May Lily of...

Professional Retirement Gifts

When a partner, colleague or employee approaches the season of retirement, the milestone calls for a most perfect gift. They’ve had many successes over the years, but now is the time to relax and enjoy! So celebrating the conclusion of a career with a gift that makes the moment matter is extremely important. That’s where GiftTree comes in.  The perfect retirement gift sends the message: “we sincerely thank you for your dedication and loyalty. Now’s the time to spoil you!” Our collection of retirement gifts leaves the retiring colleague with a dramatic impression. Here are a few of our favorite professional retirement gifts.   Celebrations for the Whole Team The Royal Champagne Basket is one of our most popular Champagne gifts and definitely makes a grand entrance. Your selection of fine Champagne pairs with gourmet fare and sweet confections. It’s ideal gift to treat a partner like royalty on their retirement.   Go above and beyond with one of our most abundant gift baskets, the Fit For Royalty. A curated collection of gourmet fare arrives in this stately serving tray. Inside they’ll discover smoked salmon, salami, nuts and so much more! It’s a generous gift that’s perfect for a retirement.   Something Just for The Retiree Our lacquered keepsake box holds complex and lingering G.H. Mumm Champagne. Add a message engraved onto the surface, thereby elevating your gift to an even greater celebration. It’s one of our most thoughtful gestures to congratulate a retiring colleague. Retirement plans involve things they love most, like spending time on the golf course! If that’s the case, our Leather Bound Golf Log is the perfect gift. Small...

Why We Gift Wednesday (Patio Edition)

Welcome to Why We Gift Wednesday! Each week, we celebrate one of the thousands of reasons that we truly love giving. Whether it’s honoring the relationships that we have, feeling grateful for an occasion or a special time of year, or relishing life’s simple joys, Why We Gift Wednesday is all about giving and generosity – the expression of appreciation for life’s many happy moments. Hasn’t this summer been absolutely gorgeous? Here in the Pacific Northwest we really lucked out with not-too-hot temperatures, not too many bugs and enough rain to keep everything nice and green. It’s the perfect time of year to spend most of our time outdoors. As you drive through the streets of Portland and Seattle in the evenings, don’t be surprised if you see lots and lots of people hanging out on their front lawns and porches, and even more so on their back patios and in backyards. Grilling season is here and the deck furniture is primed for seating. It’s time to invite your friends and family to come over for dinner on the back patio! We think one of the most important things to remember when entertaining is to keep it simple. Preventing everything  (the menu, the decor, the guest list, etc) from getting too over-complicated is what’s going to make for a really successful patio dinner party! Check out our blog about party hosting and this one about summer entertaining – both of the blogs are chock full of great tips to make your dinner parties easy and breezy. Looking for the perfect gift to bring to a dinner party host? Find wine crates, flowers,...

Perfect Red and White Sangria Recipes

As we enter the dog days of summer, one of the most refreshing ways to beat this heat and humidity is with the icy, spicy, festive wine punch known as sangria. This deliciously fruity cocktail infuses wine with brandy and summer fruits. Spaniards and the Portuguese have been enjoying sangria for centuries, but sangria didn’t come to the US until its official appearance at the 1964 World’s Fair in New York City. Traditionally, red wine is used as the base along with citrus fruits like lemons, limes, and oranges. But over the years, sangria has evolved to a more experimental cocktail including white wines, riesling and rosé, along with different types of liquor like vodka and even hard cider, summer fruits like berries and peaches and herbs like rosemary or Thai basil. There are tons of fantastic sangria recipes out there, but here are two of our favorite recipes for red and white wine sangria. Give these a try at your next summer barbecue – we hope you enjoy this cool, invigorating and delightful wine punch! To make sangria the traditional way, combine all the ingredients in the recipes below in a large pitcher, and refrigerate until the drink is chilled and the flavors have had time to mingle. We recommend refrigerating at least 2 hours, but more than 4 and your fruit might get a little soggy. To serve, pour over ice into chilled glasses. Wine glasses are traditional, but think outside the box – a set of canning jars, glass goblets or stemless wine glasses might add a charming touch, too! And remember, you’ll definitely need some snacks to go along with all this sipping!  ...

Why We Gift Wednesday (Wine & Cheese Edition)

Welcome to Why We Gift Wednesday! Each week, we celebrate one of the thousands of reasons that we truly love giving. Whether it’s honoring the relationships that we have, feeling grateful for an occasion or a special time of year, or relishing life’s simple joys, Why We Gift Wednesday is all about giving and generosity – the expression of appreciation for life’s many happy moments. July 25 – that’s right, TODAY, is National Wine & Cheese Day! Today’s the day that we celebrate the definitive duo – wine and cheese. The pairing of wines and cheese has a long tradition. Across wine-producing cultures, many have approaches to pairing wine with local cheese, contrasting the complexities in sweetness and acidity.   Wine and cheese pairing makes the perfect gift and an even better party. So what will it be tonight – warmed Brie with cool and tangy Sauvignon Blanc? Maybe you’re in the mood for a sharp English farmstead cheddar and a glass of Cabernet. (Hint, hint: our Gourmand’s Cheese Selection has Brie and English Cheddar.) Looking for helpful advice to pairing wine with the right hunk of cheese? Match the flavors in your glass to the cheese on your plate! Check out The GiftTree Guide to Wine and Cheese Pairing.   Comment Below What’s your favorite wine and cheese...

Cold Beer on a Hot Day

Honestly, what’s better than an ice cold brew after a day spent mowing the lawn on the hottest day of August? Of course being in the Pacific Northwest, the GiftTree team members know a thing or two about great beer. They’re the ones who inspire us to keep our collection of beer gifts looking absolutely amazing. Before we get into the real dog days of summer, send a beer gift to your favorite beer lover, and treat them to a cold beer on a hot day! Here are some of GiftTree’s favorite beer gifts. Personalized Pint Glasses Bring the warm sentiments of a family-style tavern into the home! Your favorite craft brew lover can enjoy this set of four pint glasses personalized with the family name. Thoughtful and impressive, these personalized tavern-style pint glasses are the perfect way to enjoy their favorite ale. The personalization is free, too!   Innovative Beer Gifts Check out these unique beer gifts! The Personalized Beer Glass Set has a special-shaped glass for every type of beer, and we’ll sandblast your recipient’s initial on the set for free. And the Hopside Down Glass is shaped to keep the beer inside icy cold while the glass is condensation-free. Or maybe they’d like to try their hand at home-brewing! This Home Brew Box Gift contains everything they’ll need to get started.   Even More Gift Ideas for Beer Lovers     Comment Below What’s your favorite beer to drink on a hot summer...

The Ultimate Camping Checklist

Ahh, how we love the summer camping trip! Honestly, can you think of anything more delightful than sleeping under the stars? What’s better than days filled with swimming holes and hiking trails? It’s probably the most fun to help the kids toast marshmallows and roast hot dogs over an open fire? And even more enjoyable, imagine being in a place where you wake up and sip coffee on a cool morning in the middle of nowhere. If you love camping like we do here in the Pacific Northwest, you know that a successful camping trip takes a whole heap of planning and prep work. Therefore, we decided to write the ultimate camping checklist – a helpful guide to enable you to camp smarter, not harder. Above all, a successful camping trip is a well-planned camping trip. Feel free to print this out and tailor it to your own family’s needs. Onward!   Information and Safety are the key to camping success! Let’s start with the most important ESSENTIALS. Printed Campground Reservations and Phone Numbers Paper Maps of the Area Field Guides, Guidebooks to the Area Fishing Licenses Emergency Phone Numbers Written Down Emergency Roadside / Outdoor  Survival Kit First Aid Kit Magnetic Compass Sunblock & SPF Lip Balm Insect Repellent   Shelter is the first and foremost order of business, so let’s go over the CAMPING GEAR. Tent Tent Poles & Stakes Tarp (for Ground Cover) +1 Extra Tarp Mallet or Hammer (for Driving the Stakes) Sleeping Bag for Every Camper Sleeping Pad or Air Mattress for Every Camper Patch Kit & Air Pump for Mattress Pillows Extra Blankets...

Why We Gift Wednesday (Best Parents Ever Edition)

Welcome to Why We Gift Wednesday! Each week, we celebrate one of the thousands of reasons that we truly love giving. Whether it’s honoring the relationships that we have, feeling grateful for an occasion or a special time of year, or relishing life’s simple joys, Why We Gift Wednesday is all about giving and generosity – the expression of appreciation for life’s many happy moments. This Sunday, July 22 is National Parents’ Day. Now that Mother’s Day and Father’s Day have come and gone, it’s time to celebrate the team. This date in July is all about bringing both together and showing appreciation for being the best parents ever!  On National Parents’ Day, we honor all that parents do every day to raise their children in a world that is full of changes and challenges. Send Mom & Dad (or any loved one who has been a parent-figure to you!) something special to celebration National Parent’s Day! From gift baskets to lush bouquets of fresh flowers, GiftTree has the perfect offering.     Comment Below How have your parents been there for you?...

Keep It Simple: 5 Tips to Simplify Business Gifting

Here at GiftTree we are all too familiar with how time-consuming (and painstaking) business gifting is. There are all the ground rules to consider, plus the search for the most appropriate gift for each recipient, all while you ensure the maximum return on investment and stay on budget. To help make things a little easier, GiftTree has a few features in place that will help you keep it simple! Here are 5 tips to simplify business gifting at your company, from GiftTree’s own Business Advantage. 1. Gift History – Did you know that all of your gift-giving history is stored on your GiftTree profile? That’s right – we keep track of your gift selections, recipient address book and so much more. This helps you remember important dates such as birthdays and anniversaries. It’s also a great tool to make the checkout process so much faster! 2. Occasion Reminders – Never miss a special day with GiftTree’s Occasions Club! Simply log in to your account and start adding holidays, special personal dates or professional milestone dates. We’ll set reminders and notify you before the important date arrives, so you can make sure you have the perfect gift in the mail. 3. The Birthday Club – Set yourself up for successful gifting all year by enrolling in GiftTree’s Birthday Club. Our automated process never lets you miss the birthday of any employee, client or colleague. You are kept up to date as gifts are shipped out to each recipient! 4. Your Store – Discover new gifts for past recipients, view your gifting history here and more. Your Store allows you to access...

Business Gifting Success: 3 Strategies to Maximize ROI

Bottom line: business gifts are good business. They improve the loyalty of customers, service level of suppliers and productivity of employees. No matter how big or small your company is, it’s wise to have a realistic plan for business gifting. Executed properly, corporate gift-giving as part of your business strategy has surprising results.  Now that you’ve mastered the ground rules of business gifting, here are three strategies to maximize your ROI through gifts.    1. Segment Gifts to Reflect Relationships.  Create tiers for the value of your business gifts. Not every partner, employee, client, supplier or referral is equal. When you place a higher emphasis on your most valuable relationships, you leave the biggest impression where it matters the most. Use the 80/20 rule. This says that 20% of gifts produce 80% of your ROI. Understand which of your relationships produce the greatest results. This determines how you can drop costs associated with less valuable relationships. Shop by price with GiftTree’s business gift collection and find the perfect gift for every business relationship.   2. Know This: Impression And Timing Are Everything.  Give the perfect gift, on budget, at the right time and your company looks like a million bucks. Give the impression that you spent a high amount when you really came in under budget. Giving at a thoughtful time will always keep your company’s reputation in check. GiftTree has many ways of helping you achieve these goals, starting with presentation. Satin ribbons, personalized plaques, logo branding and keepsake baskets make a grand entrance. Next is quality: our gourmet food and wine goes through lots of taste testing to...

Why We Gift Wednesday (Ice Cream Truck Edition)

Welcome to Why We Gift Wednesday! Each week, we celebrate one of the thousands of reasons that we truly love giving. Whether it’s honoring the relationships that we have, feeling grateful for an occasion or a special time of year, or relishing life’s simple joys, Why We Gift Wednesday is all about giving and generosity – the expression of appreciation for life’s many happy moments. Remember the good old days of the ice cream man? You’d hear that tinny, music-box version of “The Entertainer” coming from the truck’s speakers, and suddenly every kid on the block is making a mad dash for their piggy bank. The ice cream man always seemed to remember which treat I liked the best, too – orange sherbet Push-Ups, with the Flintstones printed on the tube! Now that we’re older, the days of rocket pops and fudge bars are behind us. Our palates have evolved – we’ll pass on a grape popsicle, but we’d love a scoop of madagascar vanilla ice cream with a little drizzle of Bourbon Maple Syrup. But this doesn’t mean we can’t expose the young ones to the joys of the ice cream truck. The next time you hear that music blasting around the neighborhood, grab a couple bucks and take the kids! You’ll instill the nostalgia of one of America’s greatest summer pastimes. Send a Unique Ice Cream Treat Gift...
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