Board Update: Holiday Shopping at Your Co-op

Laurene Sorensen, Board Member

Laurene Sorensen, Board Member

The Moscow Food Co-op has gifts for everyone on your list! 

A Co-op membership is lovely for someone who’s just moved here.

Gift cards, wine, and beer are the defaults: fine presents, but not especially intimate ones unless you employ some creativity.

Context is important. Although I’d love to receive a jar of Schmidt’s deodorant, you might see it as a judgment on your hygiene. Soap is innocuous—a cousin to scented candles—but shampoo might cause a rift. (Hint: Orchard Farm’s coal soap smells delicious, and is only available at the holidays.)

And presentation is, well, everything when you’re talking about presents. When I lived in Boston, I had to work late one December 24th, and by the time I was free, most of the stores were closed. Only the local grocery was open, so I bought a bunch of stinky cheese, (not stinky) chocolate, fancy teas, and a couple of kitchen implements that I wrapped up nicely. Christmas alchemy transformed them into elegant gifts. So even if it’s the last minute, remember: You can do this. Don’t turn up empty-handed.


So why not wrap up--

  • A mixed case of wine, with a different bottle to suit each month’s harvest and tradition.

  • Something to roast (duck, beef, chicken) and “all the fixings”: veggies, dessert, and a perfectly paired beverage.

  • A special mug for a young person. The MIIR Co-op logo mugs have a cover, which prevents many spills. Teach a kid about insulation by serving hot cocoa in their mug today and ice water tomorrow.

  • A colorful calendar or planner. Even if you keep your appointments on your smartphone, a paper calendar can help you track accomplishments, log time, or keep your work and personal lives separate. (The cat just asked me for nine calendars. I said no.)

  • Reusable drinking straws and lunch containers make great gifts for both kids and adults alike.

  • A 7-year ballpoint pen and a Decomposition Book—perfect for notetaking or doodling.

  • A piece each of Emmenthaler and Gruyere cheeses and a baguette (for fondue).

  • A ChicoBags water bag sling.

  • Cocktail fixings: Fevertree tonic water and fresh lime for G&Ts, or coconut cream and pineapple juice for piña coladas, a Christmas morning tradition of mine.

  • A kit for making cheese or sauerkraut.

  • A case of organic canned tomatoes or pasta sauce and another case of imported pasta. The Co-op has lots of beautiful varieties to choose from.

  • An entire spectrum of chocolate bars, arranged in order of cacao content.

  • Liberty Lotion. (It really works.)

  • Bulk goods in beautiful repurposed containers.

  • Homemade vinaigrette (extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard) in beautiful repurposed containers.

I’d like to hear about your creative Co-op presents. Write to me at And have a holly jolly December!