All I Want for the Holidays… (What’s on your list?)

As we approach the end of 2020 — the year of coronavirus — all we really want for the holidays is for our lives to go back to normal (or that “new normal”), so we can safely be with our friends and family members, and can freely travel the world again. Thankfully, several vaccines are coming soon, the first step toward ending this worldwide pandemic. In the meantime, we must strive to find ways to bring joy to each day, as we dream about and plan for future travels.

Intangible things that money can’t buy are paramount to us now, as a couple of our members have expressed below. Others chose to share one thing – food, wine, or travel-related – that is on their list to give or receive this holiday season. So here they are… Feel free to add to the conversation in the Comments section. What’s on your list?

Debbra Dunning Brouillette
Tropical Travel Girl

Photo Blanket
My photo blanket, ordered from Great gift idea! ©Debbra Dunning Brouillette

While I am waiting to safely return to a tropical location, I enjoy reliving my travels through my photographs. I have created photo gifts, blankets, pillows, and mugs for others through; photobooks through, and canvas prints of favorite photos for myself through and If you’re looking for a unique, personalized gift, check out these companies!

Judi Cohen
Traveling Judi

New York Judi Cohen
New York City is where my family is! ©Judi Cohen

All I want for the holidays is to be able to travel to New York City to see my son and his new wife. We were not able to cross the border to walk our son down the aisle. Hugging them would truly be turning a dream into a memory!

Chris Cutler
Cold Pasta and Red Wine

Briggs-Riley Luggage
Briggs-Riley Luggage

I have bought five suitcases—different brands and styles—in six years. They were all name brands, and not one lasted more than one or two trips. Please, Santa, bring me Briggs & Riley’s Expandable Spinner. Expensive? Yes, but the quality is tops. You get what you pay for.

Mary Farah
Along Comes Mary

Portovino wine
©PortoVino wine

As a wine lover, one of my favorite gifts I’ve received is from PortoVino. This line of bags ranges from backpacks to chic totes and doesn’t just hold your belongings. Each PortoVino is capable of holding up to a full bottle of wine! Discreetly take your drink on the go and pour from the attached spout.

Scott Kendall

Scott Kendall at Love statue
Scott Kendall at LOVE statue ©Scott Kendall

At a time when we are such a polarized nation, I would like to see all of us pull together and be more thoughtful, tolerant, and kind. Let’s listen to other people, even if we don’t agree, and do our best to at least understand points of view that may differ from our own. We don’t always have to agree, but we should always give thoughtful consideration to all points of view.

Noreen Kompanik

Norway Fjords excursion
Heading out from Stavanger on our boat adventure to the Norway Fjords ©Noreen Kompanik

Our family gifts each Christmas are adventure experiences in lieu of wrapped presents. We believe that vacations provide the best of memories. This year, our favorite holiday present will be planning a family trip for 2021 to the Virgin Islands, the Mediterranean, or some other amazing destination we decide on.

Robyn Nowell

©Robyn Nowell

All I want for the holidays is to travel to visit friends and family, with my car packed with baskets of fresh local produce and a jar or two of my own preserves. Let’s not forget to throw in the wine and champagne. It’s a time to count our blessings.

Sharon Rigney

Flygirl Subscription Boxes
Flygirl Subscription Boxes ©FlyGirlBox

I’ve recently become a fan of subscription boxes. It’s like a wonderful surprise every month, filled with things I may not pick out for myself or even think I’d need. I’m eyeing up this adorable box from FlygirlBox on Instagram filled with terrific items catered to the traveling woman. Receive 10% off your first box through this Referral Link.

Paula Schuck
Thrifty Mommas Tips

Maple Pearls food tour
Quebec City Food Tour ©Paula Schuck

In May 2018, I did a food tour in Quebec City. One notable stop on the tour was Délices Érable at Cie Boutique and Bistro, which included a wide range of maple items. l left with a bottle of salad dressing that had just the right hint of sweet maple and fruity cranberry flavours. I’d be thrilled to find a bottle of that under the tree this year!

Elizabeth Smith

Herbs blend
Herbs blend ©Elizabeth Smith

While we cannot travel to Europe’s Christmas markets this year, bring the market home with Sonoma-based Pentacle Herbs’ Hippocras Mulling Spices ($16). Its proprietary blend of clove, cinnamon, star anise, orange peel, and allspice is ideal for mulled wine and cider, as well as cake, cookie, and pie recipes.

Cori Solomon
The Written Pallette

Virtual wine tasting
Enjoying a virtual wine tasting ©Cori Solomon

This challenging year brought us webinars including virtual wine tastings. I would love a new MacBook Pro and/or a new Coravin with the latest bells and whistles to make viewing and writing my articles easier as well as opening both screw top and cork wine bottles simpler for single seatings.

Renate Strub
My Corners of the World

All I want for the Holidays is that we all stay safe and healthy. For 2021 I want COVID-19 to climb on a rocket and disappear in a far galaxy. And I want, want, want to hug our family and friends in Switzerland and Germany.

Shelly Wilfong
This Is Texas Wine Podcast and Toast Wine Talk

The Wines of South Africa book
The Wines of South Africa book by Jim Clarke

All I want for the holidays is … a case of South African wine and the new book The Wines of South Africa by Jim Clarke. Since this year’s South Africa trip was postponed, I’ve got more time to read, taste, and learn about this fascinating wine region.

Stacey Wittig
Unstoppable Stacey

Corning Southern Finger Lakes wines
Wines from Corning and the Southern Finger Lakes  ©Stacey Wittig

Wines from Corning and the Southern Finger Lakes make elegant holidays gifts, and to be honest, I’d be overjoyed to receive them myself.  Choose Dr. Konstantin Frank Winery Rkatsiteli, Domaine LeSeurre Chardonnay Unoaked, and Weis Vineyards Dry Riesling to enhance holiday turkeys or hams. Each exhibits the distinctive minerality of the south Finger Lakes terroir.


Debbra Dunning Brouillette

Debbra Dunning Brouillette has always been a tropical girl. Like a fish out of water, she was born and raised in the Midwest, but from the age of seven, Florida vacations opened up her world to sun, sand and turquoise water. On her first Caribbean trip to Jamaica, a snorkeling excursion introduced her to an incredible new world that exists below the surface of the sea. The fish out of water was hooked. A scuba diver and avid photographer, she enjoys exploring the reefs and natural wonders, meeting the natives, and finding what makes each island unique. She also is a self-described “foodie” and enjoys savoring the food and wine wherever her travels take her. Her articles and photos have appeared in the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram, Indulge, AAA Home & Away and Evansville Living magazines; online digital outlets, including, TravelWorld, Travelscope and; as well as her own site, She is Managing Editor for Food, Wine, Travel magazine ( and serves on the Board of Directors for International Food, Wine, Travel Writers Association (IFWTWA).