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What makes a good life? Lessons from the longest study on happiness

What keeps us happy and healthy as we go through life? If you think it’s fame and money, you’re not alone – but, according to psychiatrist Robert Waldinger, you’re mistaken.

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Valentine’s Day Gifts for HIM!

Reveal your romantic side this Valentine’s Day by presenting the man in your life with a gift that will steal his heart and make him fall in love with you all over again.

What you buy reflects how you see him and the relationship. You would want it to be something thoughtful, creative, and appropriate for the amount of time you’ve been together. Guys are notoriously tough to shop for, you’re choosing something for your boyfriend, husband, or long term partner that will ensure he feels significant in your life. Let him know how much you care  by giving him a Valentine’s Day gift that’s different.

Some great gift ideas include:

Gone Fishing! gift-basket

If he enjoys fishing, it is a gift which will show your sense of style, good taste and knowledge of your beloved’s secret passion. He is going to be ”HOOKED” when he sees this ‘Gone Fishing!’ Gourmet Gift Basket. This gift includes a great assortment of practical fishing gifts like Fishing Bobbers, Eagle Claw Snelled Fish Hooks and features a Fishing Themed Photo Frame and Ceramic Fishing Mug. Plus after a long day out on the lake he can come home to some delicious snacks fishing kit is for the perfect catch, just like your Valentine is for you!
Hole-in-One for Him

Finally, a Valentine’s gift designed just for him! The experts at Godiva have created the ideal gift for Valentine’s Day for the most important man in your life. He’ll be thinking about you with love and admiration while enjoying a great game of golf.

Home is Where he hangs his hammer 

Whether it’s a new house or a fixer-upper, send them this unique and practical gift basket to welcome them to their new home! We have included lots delicious gourmet foods to keep them energized for all those projects designed in a unique 16” double level Tool Box with a removable tray – perfect to keep all their household tools!
Celebrate this Valentine’s Day with

Valentine’s Day is the time for love and appreciation. Order romantic gift baskets from today and save  with the coupon LOVE50 or LOVE10 whichever works best for you. Enjoy this holiday with great deals! Hurry! This offer expires on February 10th.Watch our short video to learn more about our great gifts.

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What do you give a girlfriend on Chemo?

cf963-me1As you may be aware, I’m into gifts and gift-giving. It is my passion. I love to give and receive really great presents.

At Gift Basket Villas, we get questions on what are the best gifts for my boyfriend or husband, since it so much tougher to buy for a guy that a gal, isn’t it? Unless you get beer or golfing, or fishing gifts but you really need to know what they like. Most people who have a hobby already have everything they need, so you need to come up with gift ideas on how to take care of their wants. I love helping my family and friends who ask for ideas on homemade gift basket People love to give when they receive. Try it sometime and see what happens.
A much tougher question is this: what do you do about your girlfriend who received the dreaded breast cancer diagnosis?

breast cancer
She’s going through a tough time with her chemo treatments and needs to have a healthy meal plan. Do you know how to show her you care? When people ask if there’s something they can help with, they’re not quite sure what to do. A meal delivery in the early weeks would is helpful.

Courage, Hope & Strength are just a few things needed to fight breast cancer, why not let them know you are thinking of them by sending a beautiful gift basket. She will receive not only delicious comfort food gifts like candy, chocolate, cookies and Pink Ribbon Pasta, but some wonderful keepsakes as well including a Pink Teddy Bear wearing a Pink Ribbon T-shirt, ‘On the Wings of Hope’ Pink Ribbon Pin and a Courage, Hope, Strength Pink Ribbon Spiral Notebook and Pen Set. This is a perfect gift for a loved one or friend, or for use at any breast cancer fundraising event.

You can also just put together something yourself like a beautiful mug, pretty flowers or a new best seller she hasn’t read or movie that she hasn’t seen. She needs clean and healthy whole foods, nothing high in fat or sugar. Give her some honey or herbal tea.

There is something undeniably enchanting about honey coming from the flower nectar and transformed by bees into this beautiful, gooey, delicious liquid. It has long captivated us with it’s properties since ancient times. It may also have some scientific superpowers – do you know that honey can be kept indefinitely without spoiling? In an article on wound care by the National Institutes of Health, honey is shown to have antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and wound care properties. How cool is that?

Herbal Teas
There’s nothing nicer than sharing a soothing cup of herbal tea with your girl-friend. Herbal tea is a tasty, warming, caffeine-free pick-me-up, and has lots of has lots of wonderful health benefits. It can soothing a troubled tummy to easing insomnia and can be calming. Herbs have long been know for all types of healing powers. Drinking herbal tea can also be a great source of vitamins and minerals.

At Gift Basket Villas a great gift idea is our “Chemo care package” When you can’t be there in person you can still let them know you are thinking about them by sending our Chemo Champion Gift Basket. This basket is designed to help them ‘feel better’ during their treatment by including stomach soothing peppermint candy, ginger candy, gourmet water crackers and herbal tea. Also included is a crossword puzzle book to take their mind off things for a while.

“Cancer can take away all of my physical abilities. It cannot touch my mind, it cannot touch my heart, and it cannot touch my soul.” – Jim Valvano. How you can help is to just be there for her.

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Are you Pro-Valentine’s Day or an Anti-Valentine’s Day Rebel?

cbb60-me1 Are you crazy in love this Valentine’s Day or are you joining the Anti-Valentine Day rebellion?

Gift Basket Villas would like to explore this Valentine’s/Anti-Valentine’s concept. Those of you who enjoy Valentines Day may have had one of a kind experiences. It’s interesting that you can meet thousands of people and none of them really touch you. Then you meet this special someone and your life is changed forever.  You’ve may possibly met your soulmate but more often than not it’s potent, intoxicating crazy love.It upends your world.  You’re fascinated with this person that you may not even know, and may not even like if you can really see past the rose colored glasses.

Crazy love can make you incredibly reckless, though being in euphoria can be one of the most intense experiences of life. It is ruthless and yet when it is over, you have no qualms about doing it again.

“‘Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.” – Alfred Lord Tennyson

SPA_Valentines Day Gift Basket For Him


There are times though that you need to just let go and Steve Maraboli  gave some great advice “Let go… How would your life be different if you learned to let go of things that have already let go of you? From relationships long gone, to old grudges, to regrets, to all the ‘could’ve’ and ‘should’ve,’ to the dead friendships you still hang on to… Free yourself from the burden of a past you cannot change.” – Steve Maraboli 

The haters or Anti-Valentines Day Crusaders

A bad experience generally precedes the Anti-Valentine’s Day sentiment and to some extent we at Gift Basket Villas get this even though we love Valentines Day and enjoy creating beautiful gifts and gift baskets.

Spa Valentine Day Gift

We understand that Valentine’s Day may not be all it’s cracked up to be but neither is it inherently bad.  It can be driven by commercialism and drive unrealistic expectations especially for a lot of women who may have a different perspective on Valentine’s Day than do men. Is it really a time for the man to show how much he loves her? Does she measured him by what she gets. For many guys the question is more like… what on earth can I to get her?

Men may give a card and if she lives in Raleigh, you may send her a beautiful gift-basket from us at Gift Basket Villas or you  may get some chocolates because chocolate makes women feel love.

Lovers or Haters of Valentines Day – just enjoy the journey. Enjoy being single if you have – alone but not lonely. Those crazy in love, enjoy it while it lasts. Those in bad relationships – let go, you don’t know where life can take you. Everything happens for a reason.


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What’s The Worst Gift You Ever Received?


What’s the Worst Gift You Ever Received?

I was looking at Quora, a website that asks questions and folks from all over the world can answer the questions.  I saw this question, what’s the worst gift you ever got and I thought this was a great topic!

This one made me laugh out loud:

  • She got a cappuccino maker.

So what’s the problem? A cappuccino maker is such a great gift-idea. The problem was, she didn’t drink coffee or cappuccino. When she asked her husband about the thought behind the gift he said it’s because  “you love cappuccino”. She then reminded him that that was his ex-wife! Yikes, wonder if she’s now his new ex-wife?

Fish1.jpgAs you may be aware, I’m into gifts and gift-giving. It is my passion. I  love to give and receive really great presents. I get questions on what are the best gifts for my boyfriend or husband, since it so much
tougher to buy for a guy that a gal, isn’t it? Unless you get beer or golfing, or fishing gifts but you really need to know what they like. Most people in who have a hobby already have everything they need, so you need to come up with gift ideas on how to take care of their wants.

realtorI love  helping my family and friends who ask for ideas on homemade gift basket or for a guy who doesn’t want a gift-basket but could always could use a new toolbox with some great snacks while he’s tooling around the house and may even get him to do a project. People love to give when they receive. Try it sometime and see what happens.

How about  your next door neighbor going through a tough time with her chemo treatments. If you need ideas on a4938a-tea2bbasket “Chemo care package” get a beautiful mug, some great teas, honey and honey sticks, pretty flowers or a new best seller or movie that she hasn’t read or seen.






Here are some of the funniest (or saddest, however you look at it) comments on Quora.

  • A plastic rose from her husband.

Mind you she had mentioned that she didn’t like receiving flowers because of her love of nature so in his mind, this was something she’d appreciate. rose.jpgShe may be one of those folks who has a similar belief to one of my guru’s, Eckhardt Tolle. He says that If you see a flower that you love don’t pick it, because by picking it it dies and it ceases to be what you love. I think about that every time I want to pick a flower and put it in my hair. I know it’ll be dead in a matter of minutes, but I love having a flower in my hair. It feels so exotic.

So here are a few more.

  • A top she already owned because he was sure she’d like it since she’d bought it.
  • Another person received expired cosmetics from a male work colleague.

Turns out he asked his mother, who worked at Avon, for help  and what does his mother do? She gathers up whatever unsold cosmetics she’d find around the house, threw them in a gift bag, and gave it to her son as a gift for his co-worker. Some of these items were downright insulting as presents – shaving wax or wrinkle minimizing creams.

Now really, please put a little thought into your gifts. Coffee Gift-BasketGet some coffee they love, a pretty cup, some snacks. It really doesn’t take too much time to create a pretty package and no, it doesn’t need to look like a gift-designer made it. If you really want someone to know you care take that extra time to tie a pretty bow and make sure your gift doesn’t end up on the uglies gift website. Sometimes your loved ones may be happy with anything handmade, a poem, a drawing, an afternoon in the park, anything but a silk rose!