Tuesday, November 1, 2022

Holiday Gift Guide for Lawyers and Law Students 2022

Thirteen years after the very first Goodson Blogson holiday gift guide, one thing is certain: our readers seem to really enjoy looking at holiday gift inspiration from a law school library blog. Fortunately, we enjoy finding new recommendations each year! This list includes suggestions (at a variety of price points) for items that might be suitable for the law students and/or lawyers in your life.

Some gadget ideas that could be suitable for law students and lawyers alike include a stylish wireless charger (Wired breaks down 25 recommendations). Smartphone charger and UV sanitizer combos might also be welcomed. Noise-canceling headphones will likely be in use from law school final exams all the way to lawyer business travel (CNET recommends its top picks for 2022). While digital notebooks have been around for several years now, the brand recognition of Moleskine Smart might appeal to those who are just starting to make a transition toward paperless. (They also have some well-loved paper notebooks and planners for your more traditional friends.)

Maybe you can help your exhausted lawyerly loved ones by giving the gift of better sleep. The plush vegan blankets at UnHide are available in a variety of sizes, colors, and price points. For recipients with whom you have a close relationship (because this one could get pretty awkward otherwise), a nice set of cozy pajamas or a bathrobe might also be appreciated: The Cat's Pajamas offers a wide selection of styles and prints. If PJs would be a bit too intimate, a quality sleep mask may be appreciated by the jet-lagged practitioner. Nidra's Deep Rest Eye Mask is an affordable option that comes recommended by the New York Times Wirecutter blog, while Saatva offers a few higher-priced luxury options. Portable white noise machines can likewise improve sleep at home or on the road (see New York magazine's top 9 recommendations).

Alternatively, you could help your recipient stay awake with the gift of caffeine. Coffee subscriptions like Durham's own Little Waves, or the Atlas Coffee Club, can keep a variety of brews coming to your loved one for as long as you like. Or, you may want to share a specialty bag like Pappy & Co.'s Bourbon Barrel-Aged Coffee (aged in barrels that once held the elusive and coveted Pappy Van Winkle bourbon), or the unbelievably strong Death Wish Coffee. Does your loved one prefer tea? Atlas also offers a Tea of the Month Club, and tea box sets are available from vendors like Cup of Té and Ackroyd's Scottish Bakery.

Foodie friends and family members might also appreciate Maya-Camille Broussard's just-released cookbook Justice of the Pies: Sweet and Savory Pies, Quiches, and Tarts Plus Inspirational Stories from Exceptional People: A Baking Book. Broussard, known from Netflix's Bake Squad series, owns the Justice of the Pies bakery in Chicago, named in tribute to her late father, criminal defense attorney Stephen J. Broussard. (Other enduring law-themed cookbooks that we've previously recommended include the loving tribute Chef Supreme: Martin Ginsburg and Table for 9: Supreme Court Food Traditions and Recipes, both available from the Supreme Court Historical Society.) If your recipient would rather eat their holiday gift than read it, Chicago-area readers can pick up one of Broussard's pies at several partner locations, while others can have one shipped via Goldbelly.

Or, brighten up your law student’s nights and weekends with some fun and games. Jackbox Games offers a "Party Pack 5", featuring five of its popular online games which are played with smartphones and tablets as controllers. Guidance on purchasing other Jackbox games as gifts is available. For a little more nostalgic gaming experience, WS Game Company sells Vintage Bookshelf Games that fold into book-sized boxes, which could be tucked away discreetly on your favorite lawyer's shelves. Jigsaw puzzle fans might enjoy the 1000-piece Declaration of Independence or U.S. Constitution puzzles, available in the National Archives Store.

For the hobbyist lawyer whose office is in need of natural light, how about a LEGO Orchid, Succulents, or Bonsai Tree set? The artificial plants are fun to assemble, and could offer some cheerful decoration until that promotion to a window office comes through.

In pop culture news, AMC's Better Call Saul concluded its six-season run this summer, and a new Blu-Ray box set of the complete series is due out on December 6. Pre-orders of the masterful Breaking Bad prequel about shady lawyer Saul Goodman are available now on Amazon and Best Buy.

As much as we enjoy scouring the Internet for far-flung gift ideas, it's also important to support your local vendors and help keep your community thriving. For example, Durham's own Bright Black candle company offers a variety of scents, including a tobacco-forward one named for the company's hometown. Melina's Pasta offers cookbooks and pasta-making kits available for shipping, in addition to their fresh pastas and sauces available for local pickup. Julz's Creations features small-batch hot sauces and other condiments, including a Hot Sauce Gift Box whose spice level can be customized to your recipient’s tolerance for heat. To locate unique vendors in your own backyard, check out the listings for your local farmers' markets and/or flea markets.

Other sources to watch this November for law-themed gift ideas include Reid Trautz's Reid My Blog (whose gift guide returned in 2021 after a 5-year hiatus), Above the Law, and the ABA Gift Guide Galleries.

If you plan to do a lot of your own gift-scouting this year, please note that current members of the Duke University community can access the Consumer Reports Buying Guide from MasterFILE Premier (including recommendations and charts for air purifiers, headphones, fitness trackers, and computers). Consumer Reports magazine is also available through MasterFILE Premier as well as Nexis Uni, the campus-wide version of the Law School’s Lexis database (where Consumer Reports can also be found in full-text). For help with access to Consumer Reports or other e-journal sources, be sure to Ask a Librarian.

On behalf of all of us at Goodson Blogson HQ, have a safe and happy holiday season!