In recent years, so many of us parents have learned with greater clarity and certainty how very hard our kids’ teachers work. As the end of this school year draws near, consider some of my favorite locally-made gifts to say a big, heartfelt ‘thank you’ to the teachers in your life:
- Sweet tooth. There’s nothing better than freshly-baked cookies, unless it’s sweet treats that also support a great cause. Catalyst Cookies is a program of ReMerge, a local diversion program for high-risk moms. The cookie company helps build job skills for ReMerge moms, many of whom have significant work gaps that prove a tremendous hindrance in their recovery and ability to care for their kids. This employment initiative not only helps moms’ future career success in earning a family-sustaining wage upon graduation from ReMerge, it also provides delicious products perfect for gifting. Choose from tasty flavors like salted caramel pecan, birthday cake and triple chocolate chip, plus gluten free monster. Orders are accepted daily with pick up of you freshly-baked cookies the following Monday. I hear the option to purchase their cookie dough is coming soon! $12/half dozen
- Summer sips. Owned by a local mom, The Velvet Bison specializes in sparkly, poured tumblers, perfect for your teacher to enjoy their favorite sips poolside this summer. Newly released tumblers come with motivational and mindful messages to remind your teacher to care for themselves over their break. Don’t miss their line of handmade masks and inspiring t-shirts, too. Use code metrofamily to score free shipping through April!
- Stress reliever. Is there a teacher out there who doesn’t need a bit of stress relief after all their hard work this year?! Local Lather Soap Shop is my favorite place to find locally-made bath and shower products, which are a huge hit with everyone in my household. Our top choices include bath fizz (think a deconstructed bath bomb — try lavender mint or McDreamy), bath & salt shakers (sprinkle on the shower floor when you don’t have time for a bath) and the moisture-rich milk bath (for silky soft skin), all in soothing and invigorating scents.
- Yummy honey. These cute little bears of yummy, locally-made raw honey are always a gift-giving hit! Sweet Stingers Honey & Apiary is owned and run by a metro family and in addition to multiple sizes and styles of honey, they offer darling gift packages as well as honey lollipops, pollen and beeswax. At just $3 per bottle, these honey bears are perfect if you’ve got a lot of teachers, support staff and admins to thank, or make a sweet addition to a gift card to your teacher’s favorite local restaurant.
- State scents. Experience Oklahoma … in a candle! With fresh scents representing incredibly creative odes to Oklahoma, locally-made candles from 46th State Candle Company are one of my favorite things to gift. Not only do they smell amazing, the beautifully made labels and wooden engraved lids are a gorgeous addition to any space. My personal favorites are Thunderstorms of Oklahoma (eucalyptus, sea salt and spearmint) and Lakes of Oklahoma (water lily, driftwood and green leaves). $17.99/each. Shop online or at local retailers.
- Book worm. We know teachers often spend their own hard-earned money on supplies for their classrooms. Help your teacher expand their classroom library with some of our favorite books by local authors (or if they have kids, these are perfect for them to enjoy as a family). Dr. Tamecca Rogers and son Keith Ross recently released A Promise Deferred: The Massacre of Black Wall Street about the vibrant Black business district and the Tulsa Race Massacre, plus the mother-son duo has multiple other books available, several dually printed in English and Spanish. Local author Mary Nhin of the Ninja Life Hacks series explores topics that help kids cultivate confidence and increase emotional intelligence and life skills. Nhin has also written a series with her son Kobe called Grow Grit about overcoming self-limiting beliefs. Or grab your teacher a gift card to a local bookstore like Nappy Roots, Commonplace, Best of Books or Full Circle for their own reading enjoyment over the summer.
- Fresh blooms. One of my favorite locally-made gifts to receive is a bouquet from Curbside Flowers. Now with their own flower shop, you can pop in to select a pre-made bouquet or plant to gift, pre-order a selection of your choice or order online to have flowers delivered. These long-lasting blooms always look incredibly fresh, plus purchases support a larger purpose as Curbside employs and provides job training to community members transitioning out of homelessness. In addition to a beautiful gift, you know you’re helping transform lives with every purchase.