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8 holiday hostess gifts for under $20

Invited out for the Thanksgiving meal? Lucky you. But just because you’re not trussing doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be fussing. Do the very minimum and get something as not to walk in empty-handed — or worse, with a thoughtless gift. For this celebration of American gratitude, we rounded up 8 ways to show your thanks:

Today

This carafe is perfect for the klutzy caterer. Spare your host the broom and dustpan song and dance, and break the mold with this shatterproof jug. With its clear, sparkly plastic, clumsy guests will only know it's not crystal once they've already dropped it on the floor. (Shatterproof Carafe, $12.95, uncommongoods.com)

Today

Some people burn candles to ward off evil spirits, while others just want that turkey smell out of their kitchen before the apple pie hits the table. For the latter, they'll make sure this citrus candle soon finds a permanent home next to the kitchen sink along with the soap and counter spray.  (Williams-Sonoma Essential Oils Boxed Candle, Meyer Lemon, $19.95, williams-sonoma.com)

Today

This shiny new luggage tag will make that dreaded upcoming holiday travel a little more bearable. And if you feel compelled to be themed, its metallic finish can pass as a pilgrim-inspired buckle. (Kate Spade Keychain in Metallic Leather, $15, Saturday.com)

Today

The way to your host’s heart is through single-serving treats she simply cannot serve; there is not enough, and therefore she has no choice but to save it for herself. (Le Creuset Stoneware 5-inch Mini Heritage Pie Dish $11.95, Cutleryandmore.com)

Today

Step 1: Order cake balls. Step 2: E-mail your host saying you’re handling dessert and will not accept an argument. Step 3: Prepare yourself for praise, and do not expect there to be leftovers. (Thanksgiving Cake Balls, $16, etsy.com/shop/BittyBlissBakeshop)

Today

If you’re unsure what to gift, this salve is sure to universally please. Perfect for the nature lover, organic devotee, compulsive cleaner, DIYer, or luxury product hoarder, this beautiful tin of wood and leather polish will shine up their home and/or dusty leather boots with all-natural yummy ingredients, handmade in Brooklyn. (Wood & Leather Polish, $13.95, homeintohaven.com)

Today

This clever design allows you to scoop or slice your butter depending on its temperature, and the modern silhouette closely resembles its much pricier cousins. (Universal Expert Butter Dish, $20, WestElm.com)

Today

For the expat turkey-baster, cooking conversions can be a hassle. Simplify their recipes and save their iPads from sticky fingers with this handy kitchen helper in a design so smart it’s been around almost a century. (Tala Cook's Measure, $16, Momastore.org)

  • Slideshow Photos

    Awkward Thanksgiving

    Let's face it: Family can get awkward. On the year's biggest family holiday, celebrate the good, the bad and the weird with these awesome images.

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    The heating unit -

    Two childhood friends, Mike Bender and Doug Chernack, started collecting awkward family photos for their blog after seeing an awkward picture hanging in Mike's family's house. Soon, Awkward Family Photos became an internet sensation.

    See more Awkward Family Photos

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    Hair and makeup -

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    Dinner conversation -

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    Stuffing -

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    Around the horn -

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    The pilgrim pout -

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    Paper boy -

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    Turkey boy -

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    What's cooking -

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    Giving thanks -

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    Elephant in the room -

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    Drumroll please -

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    A slice of life -

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    Roasted -

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    The good life -

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    Pilgrim boy -

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    The bird -

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    The natives -

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    Amaizing grace -

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    Face-off -

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    Face paint -

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    Fowl play -

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    Inner Turkey -

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    Maize -

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    Say uncle -

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    Seasonal expression -

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    She's got leg -

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    Thanks for nothing -

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    The angler -

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    The baster -

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    The chug -

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    The colonials -

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    The Mayflowers -

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    The kids' table -

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    Happy Holidays, from our family to yours!

    Order the new Awkward Family Photo Holiday Book


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