FT&V's Top 5 Picks for Father's Day under $100

My husband likes to insist that Father's Day is a trumped-up holiday -- a creation of the greeting card-hospitality-industry-complex that pressures otherwise decent people into buying stuff and expressing obvious feelings. Appreciation is something that should be expressed every day, according to him -- not something to make a show of one day per year.

I counter that any holiday that encourages special recognition of the sacrifices and selflessness of others is not, intrinsically, bad and maybe even good. As in, don't forget my flowers and breakfast-in-bed on Mother's Day. Nah, actually I don't care about Mother's Day. Really. Ask my kids:

Seriously, any occasion when you have an opportunity to demonstrate appreciation to someone else -- especially to parents -- should be seized upon. I like that my children can take my love and care for granted: it's parenting 101 to want your children to feel safe, loved, and encouraged. You don't take offense at their self-absorption when it's connected to their need to discover who they are. And yet if there is a designated day that gives them the opportunity to be pulled out of themselves and their worlds, and to give back some of that attention they take for granted, I say: bring it on. 

I think gifts are entirely optional on these days -- efforts at thoughtfulness and expressions of love are what should count most. If it is your tradition to give Dad a token of your appreciation, it's nice to find something meaningful, i.e.  he's probably got enough barbecue tools and neckties. At FT&V, we've compiled a selection of our Top 5 gifts that will speak to his Jewish soul -- and not break your bank. All selections are under $100. Order soon to receive in time for Father's Day, on Sunday, June 19. 

1. For the shul-going Dad. Yemenite Oval Tallis Clips ($92.00). 


New product! Does Dad's tallis need help staying in place? These intricately patterned oval-shaped silver tallis clips with traditional Yemenite motif and chain link are handmade in Jaffa by eighth-generation silversmith Ben-Zion David. An international master in the creation of Jewish Yemenite art, David has inset these clips with lapis lazuli -- a semi-precious stone prized since antiquity for its deep, oceanic blue color. (Note: Ships from Israel. Please order by June 7 so they will be received in time.)

2. For the modern aesthetic Dad. Jerusalem Stone Mezuzah ($82.00) 

Simple, masculine, and spiritual. Sharon Sadan is a Moroccan-born artist based in South Jerusalem who works with natural stone and gemstones. We fell in love with Sharon's simple mezuzahs carved from native Jerusalem stone, which exude the spirit of their surroundings. The rough surface of this mezuzah is resonant of raw stone walls; it's like fastening a piece of the old Jewish Quarter to your doorway. As Sharon says of her creations, "I strive to make each and every piece echo the landscape that inspired it. My Judaica collection is rooted in my love foe the Jerusalem mountains, the color and natural texture of the stone." (Note: Ships from Israel. Please order by June 7 so they will be received in time.)

3. For the Dad with a man cave. Heroes of the Torah Glasses ($26.00)

These fun tumblers featuring Rabbinical superstars are just the right size for Scotch. What better way to honor Dad? Sold as a gift-boxed set of four: Rabbis Elizer Goldberg, A. Hildenseimer, Y. Rabinovitch, and Yitzchak Spector. Ships immediately.

4. For the grilling, gourmet Dad. Makura Extra Virgin Olive Oil from Israel ($48.00)

This is a man-size 2-litre tin of one of the finest olive oils in the world grown at one of the most ancient olive farms in Israel. The farmers and owners of Makura, Orna and Guy Rilov, claim their Carmel Mountain groves date back to Roman times. Their meticulous methods of making their award-winning olive oil may date that far back too. We offer two types of Makura's oil, Kalamata and Souri (the latter a species unique to Israel). Both are great for dips, salads or drizzled over freshly grilled steaks. Ships immediately.

5. For the Shabbat-loving Dad. Dripless 100% Makuna Beeswax Shabbat Candles ($38 for set of 10)

These handmade 100% Organic Manuka Beeswax candles by Orb are the creation of Lisa Borden, a Toronto-based Jewish mother of 3. Lisa was searching for a safe, dripless eco Shabbat and holiday candle. When she couldn’t find one, she developed it herself. Each 6"-high candle has a safe cotton wick and 4-6 hour burn time.They contain no paraffins, lead, artificial fragrance colorants or pesticides. We love that they won’t leave wax all over our candleholders (and love even more they won’t burn down our house!).

Happy Father's Day everyone!

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