Gift

The dark side of gift cards |

These days, you can buy gift cards (the modern replacement for the gift certificate) from just about every store imaginable. They are convenient, and for many people, gift cards appear to be the perfect gift solution. They’re not. I am so opposed to gift cards I’m this close to declaring an all-out boycott. Why? Oh, please let me count the ways.

But first, let me define “gift card.” This is a card with the name of a retailer on it, such as Target, Walmart, Kohl’s or Honey Baked Ham. I am not referring to a prepaid debit or gift card

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Best Valentine’s Day Gifts from DC-Area Bars and Restaurants

A Valentine’s Day cookie tin from vegan bakery Sticky Fingers. Photograph by April Greer

Everyone knows that the way to your valentine’s heart is through their stomach—and if you can support your favorite small businesses? All the better. For those still searching for that perfect, unique Valentine’s Day gift, these local spots have great options—from cookie sets and floral subscriptions to cat sweatshirts and baking kits.

Buttercream Bakeshop

If your valentine’s love language is freshly baked brownies, consider ordering one of these fudgy brownie baking kits from Shaw’s Buttercream Bakeshop. An added bonus—a dollar from every kit is donated to

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Tampa Artist Chosen To Create Gift Of Peace, Unity For NFL Owners

TAMPA, FL — Lifelong artist Ya Levy La’ford believes she was given her creative gift to spread the universal message of hope, peace and unity, something that’s needed more than ever in a world ravaged by a pandemic and racial disparity.



a woman wearing glasses and smiling at the camera: Ya La'ford will create custom-designed artwork for the 75 owners of the NFL as a Super Bowl LV tribute.


© Ya Levy La’ford
Ya La’ford will create custom-designed artwork for the 75 owners of the NFL as a Super Bowl LV tribute.

She just didn’t realize how far her message would reach until, out of the blue, she received a call from the Tampa Bay Super Bowl LV Host Committee.

“They wanted to know if I was interested

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Neighborhood Honors Deputy Who Died From COVID-19 With a Special Gift for His Son

Patty Dryden lives in the Whitley Heights community of Hollywood, historically the first neighborhood in Hollywood Hills.



a man wearing glasses and smiling at the camera


© Provided by NBC Los Angeles


She says the park across from the Hollywood Bowl looks very different today than it did five years ago when transients, gangs and drugs took over and before Los Angeles Sheriff Parks Bureau Deputy Timothy Tellez, stepped in to enforce the law.

“He just was a wonderfully, gentle, kind man,” said Dryden.

Dryden says the deputy gave his word that they’d turn the park around.

“They really saw how bad it was, and they started coming

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You should gift yourself this Valentine’s Day, experts say

Our editors independently selected these items because we think you will enjoy them and might like them at these prices. If you purchase something through our links, we may earn a commission. Pricing and availability are accurate as of publish time. Learn more about Shop TODAY.

Valentine’s Day might be a good opportunity to consider a gift to yourself. It’s been nearly a year since life as we knew it completely changed thanks to the coronavirus pandemic. For many of us, hectic social schedules hit pause while we learned to practice social distancing and isolating from loved ones.

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Valentine’s Day Gift Ideas For Every Type Of Lover

Valentine’s Day Gift Ideas For Every Type Of Lover




Kimberly Wilson



After the year like 2020, we could all use a little extra love right about now.



a close up of a toy plane: Let your love fly with the DJI Mini 2, an ultra-compact drone that's so small and easy to use that you can slip it out of a jacket pocket and launch it within seconds. With long battery life, a robust wireless connection, and 4K video, the DJI Mini 2 is the best drone you'll find for less than $500.


© Provided by Essence
Let your love fly with the DJI Mini 2, an ultra-compact drone that’s so small and easy to use that you can slip it out of a jacket pocket and launch it within seconds. With long battery life, a robust wireless connection, and 4K video, the

Read More