Holiday gifts: Lauren Hittinger Hodgson

LHittinger personal photo.jpg

Lauren's answer about her favorite gift from when she was a kid includes a photo and some powerful cuteness.

Gifts and giving are on most everyone's mind this month. So we thought we'd ask a few people to share some thoughts on presents, past and present.

Next up in the series is Lauren Hittinger Hodgson, a local freelance writer and regular contributor to All Over Albany. She also maintains her own blog, The Thrifty Ginger.

What gifts would you like to get this year?

It always takes me a while to think about what I'd like for Christmas, but after I start making a list it can be really hard to stop. This year I asked for a couple items to get photos off devices and into my hands: a nice home photo printer, and an instant camera. I also requested a passport cover, but I'm still not sure if an awesome vacation comes with it. Keep your fingers crossed for me!

What gifts would you like to give this year?

Thankfully, I did my holiday shopping early this year. I try really hard to shop locally, and spent most of my holiday money in downtown Troy, Stuyvesant Plaza, and at a few other boutiques. The gift that I'm most proud of is an apron that I sewed myself. It came out way better than expected, and I feel like a superstar.

What charity or cause do you want to support?

My husband George and I semi-regularly volunteer at the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York, which is an amazing place. Spending time there always makes me feel more centered and humble, even if I just spent two hours sorting frozen foods. The past couple of years, we have also donated a little bit of money to Unity House's Adopt-a-Family program. I like the idea that I'm helping, even if just a little bit, to make someone else's December a wonderful time of year.

What is your most memorable holiday gift from childhood?

Thinking about it logically, this probably isn't the case, but I remember receiving both an American Girl doll (Samantha), and a My Twinn doll on the same year. Regardless of the timing, I really loved to get dolls, and have fond memories of a Cabbage Patch dentist set, a doll that pooped out the mush you fed it, and another that read stories along with you (that's Pamela, pictured here).

LHittinger on Christmas morning with Pamela doll.jpg


More holiday gifts:
+Sean Desiree from South End Pallet Works
+ Rachel Person from Northshire Bookstore
+ Musical theater teacher and performer Brandon Jones
+ Katie O'Malley Maloney from Katie O' Weddings & Events
+ Illustrator Elizabeth Zunon
+ Musician Sean Rowe
+ Heather LaVine from The Confectionery
+ Lecco Morris from the Chefs Consortium


I was thinking about how being on the west coast makes me want things from home for Christmas.

This Christmas I'm getting one of the best Albany gifts ever --a visit from my mother, stepfather and one of my brothers. The only thing that would make it better is if the rest of my family, my friends and the AOA community were coming with them:)

In more tangible things - last year I wanted a bottle of applejack from Harvest Spirits; this year I'm hoping someone will smuggle me a bottle of Ironweed whiskey. I definitely wouldn't be opposed to some Saratoga Garlic aioli either - who doesn't love the gift of garlic?

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All Over Albany is for interested and interesting people in New York's Capital Region. In other words, it's for you. It's kind of like having a smart, savvy friend who can help you find out what's up. Oh, and our friends call us AOA.


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