THE GREATEST HOSTESS GIFTS YOU CAN SCORE IN DC

If you’ve hosted anybody in your humble abode, you can probably share in reminiscing about the highs and lows of hosting. Not ringing any bells? Let me give you an example. High: Having guests praise your amazing ability to pick out high-brow snacks from Whole Foods AND making them believe that yeah, you totally eat like this all the time. Low: Having everyone turn to you after they devour your perfectly laid out charcuterie board, with that “what’s next?” look in their eyes. A cheese board is an event in and of itself, people! THE GREATEST HOSTESS GIFTS YOU CAN SCORE IN DC

DC STARTUP SPOTLIGHT: URBAN STEMS

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Flowers. If you’ve ever had them delivered unexpectedly, you’ll know that despite how many times you might have boldly proclaimed that you’re just “not a flower person” or scoffed at those who spend precious wine money on blooms that will soon go to pasture, you’ll (perhaps silently) agree with me: flowers are actually the best. There are few things that can beat living greenery right on your desk or smack dab in the middle of your kitchen counter or sitting perkily in an Anthropologie vase that you knew you had to have despite its outrageous price tag. DC STARTUP SPOTLIGHT: URBAN STEMS

DC STARTUP SPOTLIGHT: SHOP OR NOT & WELCOME AND WISHES

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These days, staying hip is a full-time job. Shopping local is cool but where, exactly, you’re spending your dollar bills is constantly changing. Gifting something unique is awesome, but damn if that’s not more effort than I have to give sometime. In enters two DC startups, looking to shake up the shopping scene in a few different ways. Between helping wannabe (or exhausted) hipsters find the best of the best in terms of local goodies and curating gifts so that you can keep your title as perfect friend/daughter-in-law/neighbor or whatever, these startups are coming to the rescue by way of quick, painless (and kind of fun) shopping. DC STARTUP SPOTLIGHT: SHOP OR NOT & WELCOME AND WISHES

DC SMALL BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT: ICE CREAM JUBILEE

If you aren’t aware, let me inform and assure you: Being a small business owner is daunting. No matter what dream you are chasing, there are bills to pay, questions to answer, and hurdles to overcome. Yet, people still walk boldly down the path of entrepreneurship – and they do it with flair and determination. DC is no exception to the rule. Hidden in back alleys, tucked in spots where you least expect it, and proudly flaunted in broad daylight next to the big guns, this is a town where dreams can and do come true (with a healthy dose of hard work, of course). For this post, I want to shine the small business spotlight on a DC staple…Ice Cream Jubilee. DC SMALL BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT: ICE CREAM JUBILEE

PERSONS OF INTEREST: JAKE, CHRIS, AND CONOR OF READ WALL

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(Left-to-right): Jake Shields, Christopher Treppi, and Conor Siegel

In a place like Washington D.C., having one or two nice suits in a man’s wardrobe is a necessity. Finding a suit–the right suit–however, can be quite the challenge. There are so many different components that go into selecting a suit. We are talking about things like color schemes, fit, durability, etc. which are not usually at the forefront of most guys’ minds when they start shopping. PERSONS OF INTEREST: JAKE, CHRIS, AND CONOR OF READ WALL

PERSON OF INTEREST: KATHLEEN DONAHUE, LABYRINTH GAMES & PUZZLES

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Kathleen Donahue, Owner of Labyrinth Games and Puzzles

In a world that seems constantly distracted by new technologies, gadgets, and gizmos, it is easy to forget how useful and enjoyable the simplicities of life can be, especially in the form of a game or puzzle. When I was younger, which is not too long ago, my siblings and I loved having board game nights because it was the one time of the week everybody could come together, face-to-face, and genuinely connect without a tweet, BuzzFeed video or Snapchat filter taking away from our attention.  Now, just because we were playing a “friendly game” of Battleship, Connect Four or Shout!, did not mean I was a brutal champion over my inferior sister and brothers, but it did help us foster stronger relationships. PERSON OF INTEREST: KATHLEEN DONAHUE, LABYRINTH GAMES & PUZZLES

PERSON OF INTEREST: PAUL TAYLOR, DRINK COMPANY

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Paul Taylor, Bar Manager and Partner of Drink Company

First, they gave us “Miracle on 7th” this past Winter, and then they introduced us to Spring with “Cherry Blossoms”. But who exactly is the mastermind behind these carefully designed and well executed pop-up bars that have sent social media users into a picture sharing frenzy? Well, we know… and they are called Drink Company. PERSON OF INTEREST: PAUL TAYLOR, DRINK COMPANY