Tag Archives: christmas gift

Experience Gifts For The Holiday Season

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Experience Gifts For The Holiday Season

Hello! Are you bored with giving the standard holiday gifts? You know, lotions, candles, fleece blankets – all of the usual. Or, perhaps, you are shopping for the person who has everything? Regardless, maybe it’s time to switch gears and think about presents that you can’t wrap up and stick under the tree. We’re talking the gifts of experience! Shake things up this holiday season with these ideas and create lasting memories for your giftee in the new year:

Cooking Class:

Is your giftee gifted in the kitchen? Or can your giftee not cook at all lol? Either way, a cooking class would be such fun and something different. Whether it’s a class dedicated to delicious desserts or learning to cook Indian food, it will be a rewarding experience as well as a filling one because you can dig in afterwards! This is also a great gift to give to a couple for a unique date night.

Wine & Craft Class:

Wine or beer craft nights became wildly popular a few years ago and there’s a reason for that – they are a blast! Even if your giftee isn’t the crafty type, that’s okay! There will be a teacher to walk you through the entire process step by step and offer input to improve your project. Lots of different bars and restaurants host these events and I have seen everything from painting nights to woodworking and everything in between. You will also get the bonus of being able to display your creation in your home… Or tucked away in a closet depending on how it turns out. πŸ˜‰

Girls Night In:

Do you and your bestie have some serious catching up to do? How about booking a hotel room for a night? You can gab, watch all of the HBO, and enjoy the indoor pool and hot tub. I don’t know about you guys, but I always want to go swimming in the winter! DoorDash some grub or order room service and indulge yourselves with the ultimate girls night in.

Event Tickets:

Does your giftee have a love for the theater? Or maybe they are an adrenaline junkie and frequents amusement parks in the summer? Sports fan? Easy. All you need to do is buy a couple of tickets! It can be as big as tickets to a concert or simply treating them to a movie night for the latest flick they have been dying to see. Whatever you choose for your giftee, it is sure to be a much appreciated present.

Take A Hike:

Do you have an outdoorsy giftee on your list? How about planning an excursion on a hiking trail or a camping trip? Take a drive, pack a picnic lunch, and enjoy each other’s company in the great outdoors. Of course, you might have to hold off until warmer weather but that’s totally fine! One of the points of experience gifts is to give the person something to look forward to. If your giftee has a green thumb, there are also lots of classes available to create your own succulent terrarium or potted plant display.

Animal Lovers:

Did you know that some zoos offer “Get Closer” experiences? This allows you to have one on one time with certain animals at the zoo. I actually did a Get Closer experience with my brother at the Akron Zoo to see the Galapagos Tortoises and it was amazing! We got to love on them, feed them treats, and learn about them from one of the employees. If you have an animal lover to shop for, this is a fantastic way to go!

The gift of experience is sure to please everyone on your list and it gives you the opportunity to get creative too. Use some of the ideas above or put your thinking cap on to come up with the perfect gift for everyone on your list!

Have you ever received an experience gift before? What kind of gifts do you like to give? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Homemade Gifts For Everyone On Your Shopping List

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Homemade Gifts For Everyone On Your Shopping List

Hello!! While store bought presents are always nice, I think we can all agree that there’s something about a homemade gift that just hits different. Homemade gifts are special because someone took the time to craft, cook, or create something just for you. It’s a one of a kind gift that can’t be replicated on any website and that means a lot. Today, we’re going to discuss some homemade gift options as the countdown to the holiday season draws closer so you can wow everyone on your shopping list:

Sweet Treats:

The holiday season is the perfect time to indulge in your sweet tooth before New Year’s resolutions for a healthier lifestyle begins. Chocolate, caramel, or candy apples, trays of cookies, cakes, or homemade chocolate truffles are all an easy and delicious way to go. This will also help your giftee with their holiday feast because dessert will already be taken care of!

Scrapbooks/Photo Albums:

Does your giftee have a million vacation or family photos on their phone that never got printed? Then, a scrapbook or photo album will be a much appreciated gift! Let your crafty side take over with fun backgrounds, cute stickers, and your own happy memories of your giftee to share. Your present will make a lovely addition to any shelf or coffee table and will be able to be enjoyed whenever your giftee feels like taking a stroll down memory lane.

Tech Savvy:

Are you fairly tech savvy and have a business owner as a giftee? How about using your skills to create a social media page or business website for them? Your handiwork will assist in helping their business grow throughout the new year. If your giftee already has a site or social media page, you could offer to manage or update it to keep things fresh and relevant.

Pet Parents:

Do you have some pet parents to shop for? You are in luck because there are so many great homemade options to create. Customized pet bowls, snuffle mats, and homemade treats are all excellent places to start. Or, perhaps your giftee owns a small animal who needs fresh veggies in their diet? You could make a small indoor garden with pots containing herbs and leafy greens. Your favorite Lil Red rabbit owner would definitely love something like that!

Game/Movie Night Bundle:

Does your giftee enjoy hosting movie or game nights? If so, a bundle to assist in their next event could be very easily arranged. In a small gift basket, you could provide all of the fixings for a fun night in. A DVD or board game, snacks, or a homemade throw blanket to snuggle up in will further enhance the festivities. You also just might secure an invite to their next get together. Score! PS: This option can also be modified for a date night if you are shopping for a couple.

No matter what you choose to create for a homemade gift, you are already winning the holidays. I just know that your giftee will appreciate your thoughtfulness and generosity!

What is the best homemade gift that you have received? What kind of gifts have you made before? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

If The Shoe Fits: Marc Fisher Platforms Edition

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If The Shoe Fits: Marc Fisher Platforms Edition

Hello everyone and welcome to the last post from my TJMaxx Winter Haul! Today is another new edition of If The Shoe Fits where we will be talking about the most adorable pair of Barbie pink platforms by Marc Fisher. I love them so much and can’t wait to step out in them all spring and summer long! Let’s get to it:

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When online shopping with TJMaxx, I fell head over heels for these platforms and added them into my cart immediately. I was so charmed by the color and the shape is, easily, one of my favorite styles which made them a must have. While waiting for my order to arrive, I was already making grand OOTD plans with dresses and skirts come warm weather.

I couldn’t wait to try my new platforms on but that actually proved to be a huge challenge and they almost didn’t make it onto my feet. The way that they were carefully wrapped and stuffed with tissue made it really hard to get them unbuckled. I sat on my bedroom floor for a good five minutes trying to make it work but my efforts were ineffective because I was so worried that I would break a nail!

When I had given up, I brought the shoes downstairs to Johnny to assist and he had a tough go of it too! I had pretty much made up my mind that they would go in my return pile no matter how much I wanted them. A two person job to unbuckle them seemed excessive and I figured I would have issues getting them on. However, once Johnny triumphed in the shoe struggle and I got them on with no further issues, they became an instant keeper.

I seriously can’t get over how cute these shoes are. I wouldn’t say that I’m the most girly girl when it comes to my personal style and my new Marc Fisher numbers make a welcome addition to my shoe collection because of how different they are from anything that I own. They will add a feminine touch to an All Black Everything outfit but I am most looking forward to pairing them with floral dresses and a sun hat for a totally sweet OOTD.

I am so pleased with all of my purchases from my haul and am ready for winter to be over so I can wear everything without freezing my nads off! πŸ˜€

Have you updated your wardrobe recently? Do you have anything that you are looking forward to wearing when the weather permits? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

If The Shoe Fits: Olivia Miller Chained Platform Boots Edition

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If The Shoe Fits: Olivia Miller Chained Platform Boots Edition

Hello everyone and welcome to a brand new edition of If The Shoe Fits compliments of my TJMaxx Winter Haul. I am proud and, somewhat disappointed, to say that I haven’t purchased a pair of shoes since my wedding so it has been a long time coming for some new ones! Today, we will be discussing a pair of platform boots by Olivia Miller that I scored for twenty bucks on clearance. And, tomorrow, you can tune in for the grand finale from my haul with a darling pair of Barbie pink platforms. Now, let’s get to it:

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When I first saw these shoes while scouring TJMaxx’s website, I wasn’t initially sold on them. However, I figured that for twenty dollars it wouldn’t hurt to at least try them out and return them if need be. As you can all assume, I absolutely loved the bold chain accent popping against the matte black boot but they didn’t necessarily fall into the “must have” category.

Upon receiving my order and checking out the Olivia Miller platform boots in real life, I was much more impressed because they looked way better in person. Online, they looked somewhat cheap but holding them in my hands made all of the difference. Everything about these boots spoke to me and I was enamored with the taupe stitching that I didn’t even notice during my online shopping.

Although I ended up keeping this pair, I actually did almost put them in my return pile before I got them on my feet. The back zipper was incredibly tough to coax down and I thought to myself that it was probably why they got marked down in the first place. I just had to try them on, though, and once I got the zipper down the first time, I had no further issues.

As soon as my boots were finally on, all of the styling possibilities started swimming in my head and I knew that they were a keeper. I would never wear these in the winter to avoid salt and water stains but come summer and fall it is ON! These little babies will be so fabulous with short shorts, fun socks, and a flowy top and I can’t wait to trudge through the leaves with them in the fall. πŸ˜€

When it comes to shopping, normally, my first impression will make or break whether I bother with something or not. In the case of these Olivia Miller platform boots, my first impression was not everything and I am so glad that I took a chance on them!

What is your favorite season to dress for? What is your favorite pair of shoes like? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

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TJMaxx Winter Haul: Marled Reunited Clothing Cardigan

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TJMaxx Winter Haul: Marled Reunited Clothing Cardigan

Hello everyone and welcome to the last piece of clothing from my TJMaxx Winter Haul! Today, we will be discussing a darling heart adorned cardigan by Marled Reunited Clothing – so perfect for Valentine’s Day. Then, we will dive into some brand new editions of If The Shoe Fits so keep it posted here on lifewithlilred! Now, let’s get to it:

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My mom loves anything and everything with hearts on it, which makes me especially partial to the same sentiments too. When I saw this cardigan in store when I was making my online returns, I knew that it was going to be coming home with me just in time for Valentine’s Day. I didn’t really plan on making any clothing purchases and was trying to limit my shopping to skin care and birthday prezzies. Well, that’s not entirely true – you know your girl always kind of plans on that and it was just this one cardigan, I swear!

This Marled Reunited Clothing cardi was just too cute to pass up. The oatmeal base paired with the bright pops of red hearts is oh so sweet and is certainly not limited to being only worn on V-Day. My new cardi is nice and soft but it isn’t super warm which opens it up to being a four seasons piece. It will be great for a brisk spring day or a chilly summer night having drinks on the patio of mine and Johnny’s favorite bar.

My cardi will, of course, be so charming paired with a skater skirt and tights but is also ideal for throwing on with my go to black skinny jeans with front pockets. I have already done this several times already and it really helped to spruce up a basic work outfit. Pair with some adorable red booties and everyone will feel love in the air!

What is your favorite pattern? How are you celebrating Valentine’s Day? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

TJMaxx Winter Haul: Japna Tie Back Top

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TJMaxx Winter Haul: Japna Tie Back Top

Hello everyone and welcome back to my TJMaxx Winter Haul! Today, we are going to be discussing a top by Japna that is, admittedly, not appropriate for winter at all but I can’t wait to rock it come warm weather. This new top is identical in shape to one of my favorite purchases from Altar’d State so I knew that it would be a winner when I saw it. And, if it wasn’t, it would have been no harm no foul because it was only seven bucks on clearance! Check it out:

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When first trying on a top like my new Japna one during my Altar’d State haul, I wasn’t so sure about it:

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My main fear about this kerchief style top was that it would be too much skin, too much bra strap, and that it wouldn’t be flattering in the slightest. So, imagine my surprise when I was in the Altar’d State fitting room and it worked perfectly. The tie back covered up the back of my bra completely, it wasn’t too revealing in the midriff, and best of all – it showcased all of the tattoos on my back that never get seen.

This top was one of my absolute faves to wear last summer and I have been on the hunt for more like it ever since. I never had any luck finding a similar top until my past TJMaxx haul and I was So. Freaking. Excited. about it. Not only was it the same shape but it was black and snakeskin patterned which made it EVEN BETTER! πŸ˜€

As you all know, I love snakeskin anything and everything so I felt like I won the lottery when I found this little Japna number for under ten bucks. As soon as warm weather hits, it is so on and I might just alternate between it and my Altar’d State top all summer long. Not really, but I am pretty stoked about it lol.

Pairing my Japna top with my black shorts from American Eagle Outfitters and my new Barbie pink platforms (Which you will see soon!) will definitely be the move. To accessorize, multiple bracelets, huge sunglasses, and a big tote bag are a must. Can it be summer now or?

What is your favorite animal print? What is your ideal summertime outfit? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

TJMaxx Winter Haul: Fringe Shawl By Laundry

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TJMaxx Winter Haul: Fringe Shawl By Laundry

Hello! I had a wonderful winter haul from TJMaxx and I am so excited to begin incorporating all of my new goodies into my wardrobe. One item that I am particularly thrilled about is a shawl by Laundry By Shelli Segal. This little number was originally forty-eight dollars and I got it for seven bucks on clearance! I have never seen anything like it before and have a feeling that I will be wearing it all of the time to spice up my OOTDs. Check it out:

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When it comes to accessorizing my looks, I am always on the prowl for unique pieces to take things to the next level. I love bold, chunky jewelry, platform boots, scarves, and anything faux fur. I’m not sure what to call my new Laundry shawl because it isn’t, really. But, whatever it is, I’m obsessed and know that it will make amazing appearances in my OOTDs.

If this shawl were just the lace part, I probably would have passed on it. However, the fringe and hanging tassels take this piece over the top into something cool and edgy rather than, dare I say it, a bit old lady. The details on my new shawl are divine and it doesn’t feel flimsy in the slightest, which is something that I was worried about.

I cannot wait to wear this over top of my silk camis and other sleeveless tops and dresses come warm weather. It will also be a clever way to conceal visible bra straps because wearing one is a necessity for me. I am envisioning pairing my new wrap with short shorts, a cami top, gold jewelry, and some funky wedges for a summer date day with my husband!

What is your favorite accessory? What is your favorite store to shop at? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

TJMaxx Winter Haul: Go Away Doormat

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TJMaxx Winter Haul: Go Away Doormat

Hello! Thanks to generous Christmas gift cards to TJMaxx, I had an online haul with some darling clothes and shoes which will be discussed later. I did have some returns to make, however, so ended up spending some time shopping in store for the first time in what felt like ages. It was great! I was able to make an exchange for some new skin care, birthday gifts for my niece and mom, a new sweater, and this amazing doormat that I couldn’t pass up on:

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I never go into TJMaxx with set ideas of what I would like to buy, rather, the store tells me what I need. When making my rounds through the home goods section, I wasn’t expecting to find this Fiesta doormat for a whole eight dollars and I just had to have it. I have been looking for something like this since I moved into my apartment and have never seen one in store before. I also didn’t feel like spending twenty plus bucks to order one online.

Not only did I really want this mat, but it was also a necessary purchase. Mine and Johnny’s “Come back with a warrant” doormat has seen better days and basically does nothing to help remove snow from our shoes upon entering the apartment. The nasty slush always ends up making its way into our entryway, which results in a ton of additional cleaning so this was eight dollars well spent. The course bristles and sweet sentiment will go a long way for the rest of winter! πŸ˜€

I am so excited about all of my new goodies from TJMaxx so keep it posted for more from my winter haul. Tomorrow, we will be discussing skin care and then all of the fashion afterwards. See you then!

What is one of your favorite TJMaxx purchases? What is your least favorite chore around the house? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Happy Haulidays: Parents Edition

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Happy Haulidays: Parents Edition

Hello everyone and welcome to the last edition of my holiday haul compliments of my parents! The one thing that I asked for for Christmas was a new set of pots and pans and they definitely delivered. I can’t wait to use the beautiful set that they got me and it will be nice to not have to do dishes immediately after cooking dinner as I originally only had a handful of pots and pans before! Check it out:

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Thanks to my husband’s family graciously giving us a new air fryer for Christmas and the new cookware from mine, we have everything that we need in our kitchen now. I am so happy! I try to cook an “actual” dinner instead of air fried foods several times per week so these pots and pans will certainly come in handy. My old cookware is also, admittedly, not the best so using quality cookware for the first time is something that I’m really looking forward to.

While some might consider cooking to be a chore, it is one of my favorite things to do. Serving food for someone is an act of love, and I always enjoy whipping up mine and Johnny’s favorite meals. Our middle class fancy conversation after dinner usually is something along these lines…

Me: I love cooking you dinner.

Johnny: And I love eating it!

Lol, there is nothing more satisfying than that to me!

After a much needed curbside grocery order, I have a feeling that I will be cooking up a storm. Thanks to my parents, I have all of the tools I need to make my time spent cooking an even more joyful experience. ❀

What are some of your favorite vegetarian recipes? How do you show love to someone? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Nars Blush Swatches In Behave & Dolce Vita

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Nars Blush Swatches In Behave & Dolce Vita

Hi! Today, we are going to take a look at swatches from the last two blushes in my Nars Basic Instincts 1 palette. These colors are called Behave and Dolce Vita. While they might not be my favorite colors at first glance, I do intend on at least giving them a shot as an attempt to break out of my makeup comfort zone – we’ll see what happens! Now, let’s get to it:

^^^ The fourth picture is the swatch in Behave and the fifth picture is Dolce Vita.

When first looking at Behave, I thought that it might be too dark for my liking so I was pleased to see that it applied as a dusty rose. I think I could work with this blush but it’s not one that I would pick out for myself as I prefer brighter colors on my cheeks. Behave might be a nice shade for fall and winter but it wouldn’t be my go to choice for spring or summer. It is still pretty, though, and I will use it to dip my toes in the water of something other than my favorite shade of bubblegum pink.

On the other hand, we have Dolce Vita and it actually reminds me of the blush that my mom would put on me for skating competitions. Which is probably why I am tentative on it because we all know that competition makeup can be over the top! While the shade is almost identical, I admit that it’s much more subtle lol. I can’t picture myself using Dolce Vita too often but it could be a good look for a date night. In the end, I do think it would be more flattering on someone who isn’t me!

Although I am not head over heels about all of the blushes in the Nars Basic Instincts 1 palette, I am looking forward to using it. I do love the first blush in Orgasm and the other three hues will be ones that I can experiment with. I’m thinking that if I mix them with other preferred shades, I might have a better outcome. Many thanks again to my sister for this gift! ❀

What is your favorite blush? Which colors of makeup push you out of your comfort zone? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah