What an unprecedented year 2020 has been so far. For me, personally, the state of the world has produced a volatile set of emotions, as I anxiously adjust to a new way of life and process my genuine fear for the health and safety of loved ones. At the same time, there have been beautiful moments among the madness. Over these past few months, for instance, my nearly three-year-old son has literally grown up before my eyes. His sweetness, innocence and unconditional love have helped me find the strength to show up every day and make the most of this time. I’m not saying it’s always rainbows and lollipops in our household. Far from it. But I have found a renewed appreciation for the small, meaningful things we can do to celebrate one another.
And celebrate we should. Despite the pandemic, the world hasn’t stopped, and neither have birthdays, holidays or other milestones. We keep growing older. Associates are still making partner. And our colleagues continue to argue important cases at the Court of Appeal, albeit with judges and counsel tuning in on CourtCall. Though it may be some time before we can party in-person, these occasions should still be a cause for joy. Below, I’ve prepared a roundup of local Toronto businesses that can help bring us together, and make life a little bit brighter, even if just for a day.
Gift Hampers, Meal Kits and Goodie Bundles
1. La Bottega Di Terroni. From full Italian dinners to pasta-making kits and Italian grocery essentials, my favourite restaurant in the city is providing great options that will elevate any special occasion (or your regular Friday night dinner). My top pick is the Sud Forno weekly meal kit.
2. Coco Market. Thoughtfully packaged in a canvas tote, the Coco Market Snack Pack makes a perfect gift for a friend or colleague. Each one includes a selection of unique healthy snacks, such as coconut chips, protein truffles and mushroom jerky. With many of the products locally made in Toronto and a portion of the proceeds going to The Stop Community Food Centre, this is a guilt-free purchase for your stomach and your city.
3. General Assembly. Sharing a meal allows us to take a pause in an otherwise hectic world. General Assembly’s DIY pizza kits are a fun excuse for the whole family to gather around the kitchen table.
Flowers, Party Planning and Decorations
1. Rent Host Repeat. Delivering luxury tablespaces right to your door, Rent Host Repeat will provide all the materials you need to throw a small party and collect them the next day. With stunning curated collections like “Chinoiserie Chic” (my personal favourite), “Tropic Like it’s Hot” and “Next Year in Amalfi,” those special lunches and dinners at home will be unforgettable.
2. Ashley Lindzon Party Kits. These home party kits (which are designed for two to six people) will help you celebrate birthdays and other events like a pro. Each kit includes items like napkins, cups and plates. Many include fancy bubbles and colourful straws for that little extra pop.
3. Stemz Flower Drop. Combine the beauty of nature with the positive effects of creating something yourself. Assemble beautiful arrangements at home with a step-by-step guide and seasonal flowers delivered from local farms to your door.
Emma Gregg is an in-house counsel at Travelers Canada. She writes about interior design and culture for Precedent. Follow her on Instagram at @emmaintoronto.