Category Archives: BasketWorks

What Are The Best Ways To Age Wine?

The expression, “Aged like a fine wine,” needs to come with a caveat: not all wines are destined for the long slumber in the cellar. 

Some are more like “live fast, die young” kind of stars. However, for those precious bottles that are meant to age gracefully, knowing the best ways to help them reach their potential can be the difference between a good wine and a really good wine. 

Let’s dip into some of the best practices for aging wine, so that when you do decide to pop that cork, it was worth the wait. 

1. Understanding Wine Aging Potential

Not all wines are cut out for aging—no offense to those wines…if they’re listening.

Time for some sommelier-speak. Generally, wines with a higher acidity, tannin level (in red wines), and residual sugar are the ones that age well.

These components act as preservatives, allowing the wine to develop complexity over time. 

So, before you consider aging a wine, research its aging potential or ask for advice from a trusted wine expert.

2. Optimal Storage Conditions

Creating the perfect environment for your wine to age is non-negotiable. 

The ideal conditions include a stable temperature around 55°F, humidity levels between 60% and 70% (I know, this sounds like a weather report) to prevent corks from drying out, minimal light exposure, and a vibration-free space. 

These conditions help slow down the aging process, allowing the wine to develop its flavors and aroma gradually.

3. Horizontal is the Way to Go

When storing wine, position is key. 

Bottles should be stored horizontally to keep the liquid up against the cork, which helps prevent it from drying out. A dry cork can lead to the end of the world. Actually, it can cause oxidation, which is the arch-nemesis of wine aging, turning your precious bottle into vinegar.

4. Patience is a Virtue

Aging wine is not for the impatient. 

It requires time and, well, more time. The aging process allows the wine to go through chemical reactions that enhance its bouquet and flavors, making it smoother and more enjoyable to drink. 

This could take years, or even decades, so it’s all about the long game. 

5. Regular Check-ins

While it’s important to let your wine rest, occasional check-ins are essential. 

This doesn’t mean opening the bottle, but rather monitoring the storage conditions for the sake of consistency. 

A quick visual inspection to check for leaks or any signs of cork damage can save your wine from premature aging.

Remember, no drinking it yet! 

Aging wine is an art and a science, requiring knowledge, the right conditions, and a good deal of patience. Remember, you can still drink wine you’re not aging while you’re waiting. 

🍷 SHAMELESS PLUG ALERT 🍷 

If you couldn’t tell, we love wine, and we’ll prove it with our Mi Amore Wine Gift Basket. This gem is great for many occasions and includes TiAmo Prosecco, Tasso fig preserve, water crackers, wine cheese spread, Grisbi Italian lemon cookies, and two wine glasses. 

Enjoy!

About BasketWorks

BasketWorks is a woman-owned gift basket company located in the north suburbs of Chicago (specifically Northbrook, IL) since 1997. We are proud to offer a variety of gifts and gift baskets appropriate for all occasions. Each of our packages is built to order, allowing for customization at no additional cost to our clients. Contact us today!

Please subscribe to our blog post and follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Threads and LinkedIn.

Keep It Simple: How to Plan a Graduation Party Without Going Overboard

Not to speed up the clock or anything, but graduation season is right around the corner.

Yep, that sweet culmination of years of hard work, late-night cram sessions, and an ungodly amount of coffee. But enough about us parents.

Whether it’s high school, college, or a master’s program, crossing that finish line deserves a celebration. But let’s be real for a second: planning a graduation party doesn’t need to be the next Herculean task you undertake. The last thing you want is the added stress of party planning pandemonium. 

So, how do you keep it simple without skimping on the fun? Read on, party planners. 

Start with the Who, Not the How Many

First off, this isn’t a gala with a fish boil (has there ever been a gala with a fish boil?) 

A cozy gathering of close friends and family isn’t just easier on your wallet, but it’s also more meaningful. Imagine being able to actually chat with each guest rather than performing a frantic meet-and-greet. 

Plus, a smaller guest list means you don’t need shushers assigned to every room to quiet the crowd when it’s time for speeches or any other type of announcements. 

Location, Location, Location…or Just Your Backyard

While renting out the last castle on the left sounds epic, why not consider your backyard or living room? 

It’s personal, it’s free, and hey, the commute is unbeatable. A few strings of fairy lights, some comfy seating, and you’ve got yourself a venue with a vibe.

But…even in May and early June, we’re not out of the cold weather woods, so be prepared to bring things inside if the winds and freezing rain sweep in. 

Potluck it Up

Now, let’s talk food. Catering can quickly turn your budget from “yay” to “nay.” 

So, how about a potluck? It adds variety to your spread and lets everyone showcase their signature dish. Maybe that fish boil makes sense after all. 

DIY Décor and Digital Invites

Forget forking out a fortune for fancy decorations. 

Those Pinterest DIYs are not just for show. Balloons, photos from school, and hand-made banners add a personal touch that no store-bought décor can match. And while we’re keeping it digital, send out evites. They’re eco-friendly, easy, and instantly delivered. 

No carrier pigeons required.

Focus on the Fun

Lastly, remember this party is all about celebrating an incredible achievement. 

Whether it’s backyard games, a nostalgic slideshow, or an impromptu karaoke session, the goal is laughter, memories, and perhaps a happy tear or two.

And if this graduation signals your empty nester phase, try to contain your excitement. 

🎓 SHAMELESS PLUG ALERT🎓 

Graduates are on the run, and we’ve got the perfect gift as they stay in stride: Our Fun on the Run Snack Pack! We start with an insulated six-can cooler that’s stocked with ready-to-eat finger foods, including Woeber’s honey dipping mustard, cheese, cashews or almonds, cookies, dipping pretzels, and assorted chips. 

Enjoy and congrats! 

About BasketWorks

BasketWorks is a woman-owned gift basket company located in the north suburbs of Chicago (specifically Northbrook, IL) since 1997. We are proud to offer a variety of gifts and gift baskets appropriate for all occasions. Each of our packages is built to order, allowing for customization at no additional cost to our clients. Contact us today!

Please subscribe to our blog post and follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Threads and LinkedIn.

5 Ways Spring Cleaning Increases Productivity

Spring beckons. 

That time of year is approaching when we get to throw open the windows (at least part of the day before it plummets by 30 degrees), let in some fresh air, and get down to the nitty-gritty of decluttering our lives.

But did you know that this annual purge does more than just make your space look Instagram-worthy? Yep, it turns out, giving your home a good ol’ scrub can actually ramp up your productivity. 

Let’s dive into the five ways spring cleaning has us working smarter, not harder.

1. A Clear Space Means a Clear Mind

First thing’s first: clutter is the arch-nemesis of focus. Though there have been various attempts to broker peace between the two, the best they can do is agree to disagree. 

Ever tried to concentrate on a task with a pile of unsorted mail staring you down? It’s like each unopened envelope is whispering, “Hey, look at me instead! And keep me away from the paper shredder.” 

By clearing away the clutter, you’re not just tidying up your space; you’re giving your brain the go-ahead to concentrate on the tasks that matter. It’s pretty amazing how a clean desk can lead to a more focused mind and less self-shaming. 

2. Discovering Lost Treasures

You’re not going to happen upon the Lost City of El Dorado, but when you spring-clean, you can rediscover resources you forgot you had, like a pair of wireless headphones hibernating under a stack of papers in your desk drawer. 

That’s the universe giving you a productivity high-five. By organizing your stuff, everything you need is within easy reach, which means less time wasted searching for things and more time getting down to business.

3. Stress Less, Do More

Chaos amps up anxiety, which causes stress. 

A clean and organized space can feel like a sanctuary from the world’s chaos (maybe I should trademark that). 

This sense of calm can lower stress levels, making it easier to tackle your to-do list without feeling overwhelmed. Plus, when you’re less stressed, you’re more likely to approach tasks with a positive mindset, which is a productivity booster in itself.

4. Energize Your Space

Some days energy can be in short supply. 

Red Bull may give you wings, but you can get a lift without the weird chemicals by some basic cleaning. Cleaning can be a form of exercise which gets the blood pumping and increases your overall energy. Imagine how toned your fingers will become when you spray Windex and wipe down your windows.  

5. Routine as a Ramp-Up

Lastly, establishing a spring cleaning routine can spill over into other areas of your life. 

When you get into the habit of regularly decluttering and organizing, it’s easier to maintain a schedule and keep on top of tasks. Speaking of which, spring cleaning doesn’t have to be relegated to spring. It is not against the law of domesticity to apply the same commitment to the other seasons. 

And if it is, there’s no better way to become an outlaw.   

🚨SHAMELESS PLUG ALERT🚨

Keeping it real with the spring theme, be sure to check out our sidewalk sale. From baby sock sets and onesies to coffee mugs and martini glasses, you’ll find a lot of great deals on our inventory. Enjoy! 

About BasketWorks

BasketWorks is a woman-owned gift basket company located in the north suburbs of Chicago (specifically Northbrook, IL) since 1997. We are proud to offer a variety of gifts and gift baskets appropriate for all occasions. Each of our packages is built to order, allowing for customization at no additional cost to our clients. Contact us today!

Please subscribe to our blog post and follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Threads and LinkedIn.

Recharging: Health Benefits You Can’t Ignore

They say if you want to learn how to get things done, ask a busy person. 

There’s truth to that and to this: if you want to learn how to become a ball of stress, ask a busy person. Being busy is often worn as a badge of honor. It’s great to be productive, but it is also vital to practice the art of unwinding and rejuvenating.  

Let’s dive into the transformative health benefits of giving ourselves permission to hit the pause button and recharge.

Mental Clarity and Creativity

First up, mental rejuvenation. 

Ever notice how your best ideas come to you not when you’re hunched over your laptop at midnight but perhaps during a quiet walk or a leisurely shower? 

That’s no coincidence. 

Taking time to relax and do things we enjoy like reading a book, meditating, or simply daydreaming, can significantly boost our mental clarity and creativity. Take it from me and the science people who conduct sciency studies like the ones mentioned here

Stress Reduction

The bad: chronic stress can wreak havoc on our bodies, leading to problems like hypertension, heart disease, and a weakened immune system. 

The good: stepping back and engaging in non-stressful activities like yoga, painting, or baking, allows us to downshift from the high alert state and reduce the levels of stress hormones like cortisol. 

Speaking of baking, did you know that stressed spelled backward is desserts? 

And racecar spelled backward is racecar, but that’s neither here nor there. 

Improved Physical Health

Recharging has tangible physical health benefits, too.

Adequate rest and relaxation can help lower blood pressure, reduce the risk of stroke, and improve sleep quality. When we’re well-rested, our body’s systems are in better balance, from our heart to our digestive system, enhancing overall health and vitality. 

Also, when we’re well-rested, we’re the non-jerk versions of ourselves. 

Enhanced Emotional Well-being

If scheduling me-time sounds selfish, then cool. 

When we carve out moments just for us, it’s like giving our emotional health a big, strong shield, keeping those tough anxiety and depression gremlins at bay. Diving into activities that fill our batteries—be it painting, dancing in our living room, or sipping a cup of tea—can really crank up the happiness volume. 

It’s all about lighting up our mood and seeing life with those rose-tinted glasses firmly on.

Strengthened Relationships

I’m going to let you in on a little secret: when we feel better, it helps our relationships. 

Just blew your mind, didn’t I? 

When we’re all juiced up and feeling top-notch, the people around us get to enjoy the best version of us, too. Suddenly, we’re there in the moment, way more chill and ready to really listen. By giving ourselves this dose of TLC, we’ve got so much more love and patience to spread around. 

Your mission, should you choose to accept it—and you should—is to carve out time in your calendar to take it easy. 

🚨SHAMELESS PLUG ALERT🚨

With all this talk about chillaxing, we just have to tell you about our Inner Zen Relaxation Gift Basket. Built in a faux leather storage box, this gift oozes calm with a mini Buddha Board drawing easel, color in ceramic mug, black raspberry vanilla soap, black raspberry vanilla hand cream, and more. 

Enjoy the Zen.

About BasketWorks

BasketWorks is a woman-owned gift basket company located in the north suburbs of Chicago (specifically Northbrook, IL) since 1997. We are proud to offer a variety of gifts and gift baskets appropriate for all occasions. Each of our packages is built to order, allowing for customization at no additional cost to our clients. Contact us today!

Please subscribe to our blog post and follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Threads and LinkedIn

5 Valentine’s Day Traditions Around The World

Valentine’s Day, a celebration of love, affection, and 10pm dinner reservations due to last minute planning is observed not just in the US of A, but across the globe. 

Indeed, some countries stick to the traditional chocolates and flowers, but others have unique customs that make February 14th a day to remember. I invite you to surf Cupid’s arrow for a 

love-filled journey around the world to explore five distinct Valentine’s Day traditions.

1. Wales: Love Spoons

I know, I had to do a double take, too, but I’m not here to judge. 

Yes, Welsh tradition holds a unique craft at its romantic core: the carving of love spoons. These wooden spoons are intricately carved and presented as symbols of love and affection. 

With designs featuring hearts, keys, and locks, they are meant to showcase a suitor’s skills and commitment.

That’s a low bar. Doh, I’m being judgy again!

2. Japan: Chocolate with a Twist

Japan’s got the egalitarian spirit down pat. 

Over there, Valentine’s Day takes an interesting turn, with women presenting men with chocolates—but it doesn’t end there. The following month, on White Day, men return the favor, often with more elaborate gifts. 

This unique exchange highlights the reciprocal nature of love and relationships in Japanese culture…and demonstrates how they’re much better at Valentine’s Day than we are. 

3. South Korea: A Love Marathon

South Korea takes home the gold medal in terms of Valentine’s Day thoughtfulness. 

Those who find themselves without romantic gifts on February 14th can look forward to Black Day on April 14th, where singles gather to enjoy Jajangmyeon (black bean noodles) and celebrate or commiserate their single status.

4. Denmark: Snowdrops and Joke Letters

Those Danes are some funny rascals. 

Valentine’s Day in Denmark is characterized by the exchange of lover’s cards and humorous joke letters known as “gaekkebrev.” 

I don’t know about you, but saying “gaekkebrev” out loud is funny enough that I wouldn’t need to read the actual letter. Also, I don’t know Danish. 

This playful tradition adds a lighthearted touch to the Danish expression of love, while the gifting of snowdrops (delicate white flowers) adds a layer of sappiness…I mean,  traditional beauty.

5. Philippines: Mass Weddings

The Philippines celebrates Valentine’s Day with grandeur and a sense of community through mass wedding ceremonies. These events, often sponsored by the government, allow couples to tie the knot in a shared, festive atmosphere, making the day truly memorable.

That sounds wonderful! Except for the part where you just want to celebrate Valentine’s Day without committing yourself to marriage. 

The global celebration of Valentine’s Day reminds us that, while the language of love may vary, its message is universal and that saying “gaekkebrev” five times will cause you to belly laugh. 

💘SHAMELESS PLUG ALERT💘

Want to give a Valentine’s Day gift to remember? 

Duh, of course you do. Check out our heart-shaped Eat Your Drink! gift box, featuring—hold on to your hat—alcoholic gummies from Smith & Sinclair. You heard that correctly. They are blended with the craftsmanship of a classic cocktail, boasting an array of premium flavors, including Amaretto Sour, Bourbon Old Fashioned, Cinnamon Whisky, Elderflower Gin Spritz, Gin & Tonic, Mandarin Spritz, Mocha Espresso Martini, Moscow mule, Passion Fruit Martini, and more! 

Bottoms up, Bon Appétit, and Happy Valentine’s Day!

About BasketWorks

BasketWorks is a woman-owned gift basket company located in the north suburbs of Chicago (specifically Northbrook, IL) since 1997. We are proud to offer a variety of gifts and gift baskets appropriate for all occasions. Each of our packages is built to order, allowing for customization at no additional cost to our clients. Contact us today!

Please subscribe to our blog post and follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Threads and LinkedIn.

Yum: 5 Attributes of Comfort Food

In the realm of culinary delights, there’s a special category that goes beyond mere sustenance: comfort food. 

It’s the kind of food that wraps its arms around you after a long day—a food hug, if you will. Hey, that’s got a nice ring to it. 

But what exactly makes a dish comfort food? Let’s dive taste buds first into the five quintessential attributes that give comfort food its soul-satisfying essence.

1. Rich and Fulfilling Flavors

First and foremost, comfort food is all about rich, fulfilling flavors. 

These are the dishes that are generously seasoned and full of heartwarming tastes. Nothing bland! Bland = blasphemy. 

Whether it’s the deep, savory flavors of a slow-cooked stew or the sweet, velvety taste of a chocolate pudding, hot cocoa or the satisfying crunch of your favorite cookie, comfort food tantalizes the taste buds and leaves you feeling content.

I don’t know about you, but I feel comforted just reading this. 

2. Simplicity and Accessibility

One of the hallmarks of comfort food is its simplicity. 

These are not dishes that require exotic ingredients or utilizing your oven, stovetop, microwave, air fryer, toaster, blender, immersion blender, and food processor all at the same time (though, we’re darn close to an all-in-one appliance). 

Comfort food is accessible; it’s made from common ingredients that many people have in their kitchens. Think of a classic grilled cheese sandwich or a bowl of buttery mashed potatoes. 

These meals are straightforward to prepare, and they get the job done. 

3. Nostalgia and Sentimentality

Perhaps the most defining attribute of comfort food is its ability to evoke nostalgia. 

For many, comfort food is inextricably linked to childhood memories, family traditions, or specific moments in time. It could be your grandmother’s apple pie recipe, the tomato soup your mother made when you were sick, or that bowl of porridge from Goldilocks and the Three Bears.

These foods transport you back to moments of happiness and security, providing an emotional connection that transcends the mere act of eating.

4. Serotonin Producers

The science people say that eating sweet, starchy foods coaxes serotonin, the chemical that the brain releases when it’s being nice that makes us feel calmer, and decreases the stress hormone cortisol. 

Studies from said science people show that folks feel less depressed, anxious and irritable after consuming carbohydrate-rich foods. 

But remember, everything in moderation. 

5. Indulgence and Treat

Lastly, comfort food often represents indulgence, or as the seven deadly sins go, gluttony. I, for one, think they need to add an eighth sin: judgment of indulgence and gluttony. 

Where was I? Oh yes, it’s the food you turn to for a treat, to pamper yourself after a stressful day, or to celebrate a special occasion. Kick your usual fare to the curb and replace it with decadent cheesecake, a plate of crispy fried chicken, or a serving of creamy pasta.

You deserve it. 

🚨SHAMELESS PLUG ALERT🚨

Nothing says comfort food like our Cookies & Cocoa Gift Basket. Talk about warm and cozy. This winner features J&M Cookies, Cocoa Lover’s gift box, Dolcetto wafer cookie packs, 

Tate’s Tiny chocolate chip cookies, Magnolia Bakery banana pudding cookies, and more!

Time to get comfy. 

About BasketWorks

BasketWorks is a woman-owned gift basket company located in the north suburbs of Chicago (specifically Northbrook, IL) since 1997. We are proud to offer a variety of gifts and gift baskets appropriate for all occasions. Each of our packages is built to order, allowing for customization at no additional cost to our clients. Contact us today!

Please subscribe to our blog post and follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Threads and LinkedIn.

Teeing Up Wellness: 5 Surprising Health Perks of Golf

Why are we writing about golf on a day like this when it’s half-snowing, gray, and drab out? 

To give you something to look forward to! 

Golf often conjures images of leisurely days spent on manicured greens under the sun. However, this beloved sport offers more than just a chance to show off your latest clubs and golf cart-handling abilities. 

It’s also a surprisingly effective way to enhance your physical and mental well-being. Here’s a look at five health benefits of playing golf.

1. Heart Health Booster

Golf is a fantastic cardiovascular workout. For real. 

Walking the course, carrying your bag, swinging, and even retrieving your ball can get your heart rate up, promoting better blood circulation (I’m out of breath just writing this). 

In addition, this physical activity can strengthen your heart muscle, reducing the risk of heart-related diseases and lowering harmful cholesterol levels. 

2. Brain Stimulator

Golf is good for the brain

Golfers often use strategic thinking, problem-solving, and concentration during their game. It’s like AP Calculus but fun and with a snack cart. 

This mental engagement stimulates brain function, which can help improve neural connections and delay cognitive decline. The concentration required on the course also increases mental alertness and can improve hand-eye coordination. 

Hello 36 holes! 

3. Stress Reliever

Spending time outside in nature (very man-made nature, but still…) can reduce stress levels, and the tranquil setting of a golf course can provide a serene escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. 

The game also encourages social interaction, which is always healthy. Playing a round with friends can offer much-needed relaxation and a break from daily stressors—as long as you’re with the friends who don’t annoy you. 

4. Improved Sleep Quality

The physical activity involved in golfing tires you out, allowing for more restful sleep

I can make a joke here about how non-golfers can easily fall asleep by watching golf…and it looks like I did make a joke. Ha. Ha. 

Back to the health benefits. Walking in the fresh air and sunshine also helps regulate the body’s natural sleep-wake cycle, which can improve overall sleep patterns.

5. Low-Risk for Injury

Listen, you can get injured doing anything, like sneezing. But as sports go, golf is a low-impact activity, which means it’s gentle on the joints and muscles. 

This makes it an ideal sport for people of all ages, particularly older adults who might be unable to engage in high-impact sports. The risk of injury in golf is much lower compared to other sports, making it a safe option for regular physical activity.

Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a beginner, the health benefits of golf are compelling reasons to hit the greens. 

🏌️‍♀️ SHAMELESS PLUG ALERT 🏌️‍♀️

Guess what? We have a gift basket for golfers! What a coincidence!!

Our 19th Hole is built in a wire golf range basket with these goodies: golf ball and tee set; pretzels; dipping mustard; nuts; cookies; and wasabi peas. 

Start the countdown now until golf season!

About BasketWorks

BasketWorks is a woman-owned gift basket company located in the north suburbs of Chicago (specifically Northbrook, IL) since 1997. We are proud to offer a variety of gifts and gift baskets appropriate for all occasions. Each of our packages is built to order, allowing for customization at no additional cost to our clients. Contact us today!

Please subscribe to our blog post and follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Threads and LinkedIn.

Why It’s Important to Set Realistic New Year’s Resolutions

Ah, January—a time of fresh starts and ambitious goals. 

We get to flip or swipe to that new calendar page with hope and the promise of a new beginning. 

But let’s chat about New Year’s resolutions, shall we? We all make them with the best of intentions, yet somehow, by February, they often seem as forgotten as last year’s holiday decorations.

So, what’s the deal with setting realistic resolutions? Why is it important, and how can it change our approach to the new year?

Read on, friends. Read on. 

1. Setting the Stage for Success

Let’s talk about success. 

When we set achievable goals, we’re more likely to meet them. It’s not rocket science, but it is human nature. But wait, it’s also kind of sciencey, because there’s the chemistry of confidence that comes with success. There’s a dopamine release when we achieve things, and it feels good. 

But temper expectations. 

Setting a goal like “I’ll run a marathon by February” when you haven’t jogged around the block since high school might be stretching it a bit thin. Instead, how about “I’ll start with brisk walks, then gradually jog”? Sounds doable, right? 

These small victories create momentum, and before you know it, you’re actually running that marathon, more likely by the following February. 

2. The Motivation Factor

Nothing saps motivation like unattainable goals (and the TV remote). 

If you’re constantly facing uphill battles, it’s natural to feel defeated. But when your resolutions are within reach, each step forward is a little victory, keeping that motivational fire burning. 

Remember, motivation loves company, and achievable goals are its best friends.

3. Avoiding the Burnout

Ever jumped into a resolution full force, only to burn out quicker than a cheap candle? 

Burnout happens when we start with intense enthusiasm for ambitious goals, but this intensity is often unsustainable, leading to exhaustion and a loss of motivation. 

Maybe your goal is to be more active on social media for your business. You go gangbusters in January, rattling off 15 posts per week and then…you crash and get totally sick of Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, TikTok, SnapChat, what have you. 

Instad, go slow and steady, cliche and all, but it will be a more manageable journey, allowing you to pursue your resolutions without running out of steam.

4. Flexibility is Key

Life is unpredictable, said everyone ever. 

That’s why flexible, realistic goals are crucial. They allow for life’s curveballs without making you feel like you’ve derailed your entire year. Miss a week at the gym because the flu hit you like a freight train? No problem, you’ve set a realistic schedule that allows for hiccups. 

Maybe you want to learn a new language but find a particular interest in its culture instead. With realistic and adaptable goals, you can shift focus without feeling guilty. This flexibility makes your resolutions more attainable and enjoyable.

No one said they have to be punishing, right? 

5. Building Confidence, Not Regret

When you prove yourself to yourself, you build self-confidence and an excuse to use “self” four times in a relatively short sentence. 

For real, and not to sound too trite, but when you actually carry out one resolution, it makes the others easier. 

If you don’t believe me, then I guess I’ll have to get more sciencey on you. Self-confidence is deeply rooted in our psychology and neuroscience. Neurologically, it’s associated with a network of brain areas, including the prefrontal cortex, which influences decision-making and social interactions. Psychologically, confidence is bolstered by positive experiences and reinforcement, which stimulate the release of neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine, enhancing our mood and our belief in our own abilities. 

Hey, you made me go there, but see what I mean? This biochemical response not only lifts up our sense of well-being, but also reinforces our capacity to tackle challenges and succeed in various tasks, further nurturing our self-confidence.

It’s like a hamster wheel that’s actually beneficial. 

One of my resolutions is to establish more work/life balance and focus on self-care. To that end, we’re taking a break until January 2. We’ll be checking and replying to email, but not shipping anything out. 

🎉 SHAMELESS PLUG ALERT 🎉

Over here at BasketWorks, we believe in rewards for fulfilling New Year’s resolutions. Enter our Martini Gift Basket, built in an oh so elegant bento tray, serving up two Martini glasses, cocktail shaker, Grey Goose Vodka, Patron XO Cafe coffee liqueur, and organic simple syrup.

Happy New Year!

About BasketWorks

BasketWorks is a woman-owned gift basket company located in the north suburbs of Chicago (specifically Northbrook, IL) since 1997. We are proud to offer a variety of gifts and gift baskets appropriate for all occasions. Each of our packages is built to order, allowing for customization at no additional cost to our clients. Contact us today!

Please subscribe to our blog post and follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Threads and LinkedIn.

5 Reasons Why Gift Baskets Rule, Especially During the Holidays

I know, shocking that we’d sing the praises of gift baskets, but hey, it’s our blog. 

There’s a reason why gift baskets are ubiquitous during the holiday season: they bundle a variety of treats and treasures in one beautifully presented package. Also, it’s really fun to pick one up and place it on the kitchen table or counter and see how it doubles as a display (kind of like flowers) and a tower of yummy stuff to tear into. 

Here are five reasons why gift baskets are an unbeatable choice, especially during the holidays.

1. V for Variety

Gift baskets are the epitome of variety (nice rhyme). 

Whether it’s a mix of sweet and savory snacks, a selection of gourmet chocolates, or an assortment of beauty products, a single basket can cater to different tastes and preferences. This variety isn’t just practical; it also adds an element of surprise and discovery as the recipient delves into the basket’s depths, uncovering the goodies layer by layer.

What’s there not to like?

2. Personalization with a Touch of Class

Off-the-shelf gifts are just so…Off-the-shelf

Good gift basketeers (we know some) understand the nice touch of personalization. Tailored to the recipient’s likes, hobbies, or dietary preferences, each basket can be a reflection of thoughtfulness and care. From gluten-free products to wine connoisseur assortments, the ability to customize makes gift baskets a personal and considerate choice. 

Additionally, the elegant presentation of these baskets, adorned with ribbons and festive decorations, adds a touch of class and sophistication to your gift.

3. Convenience at Your Fingertips

In the hustle and bustle of holiday preparations, convenience is key. 

Enter gift baskets. They save you the time and hassle of assembling multiple individual items. They come beautifully packaged and ready to gift, eliminating the need for wrapping or boxing. 

There’s a saying: “Convenience is a lifesaver during the busy holiday season.” Is that a saying, or did I just make up something brilliant? I’ll have to get back to you on that. Anyway, convenience is good and it allows you to focus on enjoying the festivities rather than worrying about gift preparation.

4. The Joy of Unboxing

If you’ve seen my unboxing videos on the socials, then you understand that this is one of my favorite things to do. If you haven’t then start watching! 

There’s something inherently exciting about unboxing a gift, especially gift baskets. The act of exploring a gift basket, with its layers of surprises, creates a memorable and interactive experience for the recipient. It’s not just about the items inside; it’s about the joy of discovery and the anticipation of uncovering each product hidden within.

And remember, you look like a holiday hero when the gift comes from you. 

5. Perfect for Any Occasion

We may be focusing on the holidays, but there’s always an occasion to give someone the gift of gift baskets. 

Anniversaries, birthdays, weddings, new home, new baby, new mortgage…you name it. 

Plus, who needs an excuse? Brighten a mundane Monday or celebrate surviving a dentist appointment with a gift basket! After all, life’s too short not to seize every chance to enjoy some good cheese, chocolate, or whatever tickles your fancy in wicker form.

🎅⛄SHAMELESS PLUG ALERT 🎅⛄

And speaking of baskets during the holiday season, nothing says Season’s Greetings like our Season’s Greetings Holiday Gift Basket, built in a round wood basket with a gold accented green edge and replete with dipping pretzels, honey mustard, sausage, cheese spread, crackers, peanut brittle, Joolies dates, and more! 

Happy Holidays! 

About BasketWorks

BasketWorks is a woman-owned gift basket company located in the north suburbs of Chicago (specifically Northbrook, IL) since 1997. We are proud to offer a variety of gifts and gift baskets appropriate for all occasions. Each of our packages is built to order, allowing for customization at no additional cost to our clients. Contact us today!

Please subscribe to our blog post and follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Threads and LinkedIn.

Cranberries: The Holiday Superfruit with 5 Surprising Health Benefits

We may be done with Thanksgiving, but cranberries are not done with us. 

Sure, we had our fill of turkey and cranberry sauce, but lest you think cranberries are a one and done holiday accoutrement, oh you’ve got another think coming. We’re about to enter the thick of the holiday season, and cranberries are taking center stage in the form of sauces, decorations, and festive drinks. 

These tiny, tart berries are more than just a colorful addition to your holiday table. Packed with nutrients, they offer a sleigh-load of health benefits. 

Let’s unwrap the top five health benefits of cranberries and see how they can be a merry and bright part of your holiday diet.

1. Powerhouse of Antioxidants

Cranberries are the little elves of the fruit world, working hard to protect your body. 

They’re loaded with antioxidants, which combat free radicals, those pesky molecules that can lead to a variety of chronic diseases. During the holidays, when indulgence peaks, adding a handful of cranberries to your diet could be a simple way to keep your body’s defenses up.

2. Urinary Tract Health

A little TMI, but it’s still important to know that cranberries can maintain urinary tract health

They contain compounds that prevent bacteria from adhering to the bladder walls. Including cranberry sauce or juice in your holiday meals isn’t just a tasty tradition; it’s also a boon for your urinary system.

3. Digestive Health

The holidays are notorious for delicious but sometimes heavy meals. 

Cranberries can be your tummy’s best friend during this season. They contain dietary fiber which aids digestion and can help prevent constipation, keeping your digestive system merry and light.

4. Heart Health

Cranberries are full of heart-healthy compounds, including flavonoids, which have been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease and, in general, are a funny word to read and say out loud. 

Their anti-inflammatory properties are like a holiday gift to your arteries, helping to reduce blood pressure and cholesterol levels. A sprinkle of dried cranberries over a salad or a glass of cranberry juice could be a simple way to keep your heart beating with holiday joy.

5. Immune Support

Winter brings with it the gift nobody wants, colds and the flu. 

Cranberries, with their high vitamin C content, are great for bolstering your immune system. Integrating cranberries into your holiday diet might help keep you off Santa’s sick list.

But the magic of cranberries doesn’t stop at vitamin C. They also boast a suite of other immune-boosting nutrients like vitamin E and K, and antioxidants. These components work together to enhance your body’s ability to fight off infections, making them a natural and tasty way to boost your immunity.

🎄 🕎  🕯️ SHAMELESS PLUG ALERT 🎄 🕎  🕯️

In addition to cranberries, you know what else we love? Gnomes. 

As such, we present our Gnome for the Holidays Gift Basket, built in a hyacinth basket, featuring a plush gnome ornament, gnome cookie jar, gnome nog mix, gnome cocoa mix,

Walker’s shortbread, Magnolia Bakery banana pudding cookie, Dolcetto wafer cookie pack, and more!

About BasketWorks

BasketWorks is a woman-owned gift basket company located in the north suburbs of Chicago (specifically Northbrook, IL) since 1997. We are proud to offer a variety of gifts and gift baskets appropriate for all occasions. Each of our packages is built to order, allowing for customization at no additional cost to our clients. Contact us today!

Please subscribe to our blog post and follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Threads and LinkedIn.