Tag Archives: christmas

Holiday Gifts That Always Win

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Holiday Gifts That Always Win

Howdy! The holiday season is here, and there is no doubt about it. And, with this festive season, comes family gatherings, lots of food, and holiday shopping. I, personally, love holiday shopping. But, then again, I love any kind of shopping! And, if you’re like me, then you will want to complete your purchases nice and early this month. Or, perhaps, you like to wait until the last minute and hit the stores on Christmas Eve! No matter how you do it, the present ideas below are always sure to please:

Comfort Items:

Male or female, every person loves comfort gifts. Whether it’s a huge cozy blanket, slippers, or new flannel pajamas, you really can’t go wrong with this option. If you’re shopping for a man’s man, grab a fleece throw with his favorite sports team on it. Or get your best girlfriends a pajama set and a bottle of wine for your next movie night in. These types of gifts are also a great choice, because they are something that your giftee will actually use and they will be sure to think about you every time!

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Ingredient Jars:

A gift idea that I love but, have actually never made, are ingredient jars. You know, the mason or cookie jars that are filled with the fixings to make a delicious pot of soup or tray of sugar cookies. These are fun gifts, because they are activity based but, the giftee really doesn’t have to do anything other than follow the instructions on how to make the recipe. You can go all out and decorate the jar into a reusable masterpiece, too! Or, you can get a set of holiday mugs filled with the goods to make a perfect cup of hot chocolate – a definite hit around the office.

Hobby Based Gifts:

The bread and butter of my holiday shopping are hobby based gifts. When you are preparing your shopping list, think long and hard about the interests of your giftees and plan accordingly. Is she an amateur photographer? Sweet, because Polaroid cameras are making a total comeback. Does he love to garden? Some packets of seeds and some new gear for around the yard will do just fine. Gifts that tend to the person’s hobbies are a great way to go, because you know that they will be well used and they will help to take the giftee’s passions further, which is a gift all in itself.

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Smell Goods:

Alright, let’s be honest here. Lotion, candles, body wash and all of that jazz are the most basic but effective gifts that you can give to someone. Girls love it and, hey, guys love to be pampered, too! But, just because this gift is given constantly, doesn’t mean that it has to be the same old same old. Create a gift basket for a bath time delight with bath bombs from Lush, bath salts, body butter, and bubble bath for the ultimate package for relaxation. Or, gift your guy with a fancy shmancy shaving kit to spruce his self care routine up. And, if you are unsure if which scents to go for, always go with something neutral like Shea or Cocoa butter, which is sure to be well liked by anyone.

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Home Decor:

The option of home decor is a really nice one to go with, because it’s going to be used year round or every year during the holiday season. Pick up some beautiful picture frames with some of your favorite photos of you and the giftee. Or, you could even craft a holiday wreath to hang on the door. Ornaments for the tree are also a hit, too! From centerpieces and vases to knick knacks and outdoor decor (Solar lanterns or wind chimes, perhaps?), decorative gifts are a crowd pleaser, because it’s something that the giftee might not necessarily buy for themselves. I love those types of presents!

Hopefully these gift ideas will put you on the right path to some successful holiday shopping. And, if you’re still having trouble, always remember that homemade gifts are an excellent and well received way to go, too!

What is your favorite type of gift to give? Who is the most difficult person on your list to shop for? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

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Early Holiday Shopping Tips & Tricks

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Early Holiday Shopping Tips & Tricks

Hiiii everyone! If you’re like me, then you like to get your holiday shopping done nice and early. I’ll tell you what, there is nothing better than clearing off your Christmas shopping list in November so that you can relax and be merry all December long. I recently began my shopping for my friends and family and even buying for just a few people has let me breathe a huge sigh of relief.

But, sometimes, holiday shopping can seem like a bit much – especially if you have a large family or group of friends to buy for. And, believe me, I get it. I have a pretty substantial list of people to shop for and that’s why I ball on a budget more than ever during the holiday season with the following tips:

Make A List/Budget:

The very first thing that I do when I prep for holiday shopping is the obvious starter of making a list. I go through everyone in my head that I need to buy for from family to significant others of the family to my boyfriend, BFFs, and colleagues and then write them down accordingly. Then, I include some basic ideas of what to get for each person by their names.

Once I have a good idea of who I need to shop for and what I would like to purchase for them, I set a budget. Normally, I have a pretty set in stone price range that I would like to stay in that applies for everyone. But, there could be certain people that you might want to shell out more or less from depending on the situation. Are you surprising your parents with a holiday gift basket? Awesome, ball out. Do you have a white elephant gift to buy for the office party? Spend a little less. That way your budget will still end up balancing out in the end.

Shopping lists and budgets provide a great guideline for completing your present purchasing in a (Somewhat!) stress-free manner. But, don’t let the price points that you set make you go too crazy! Going over budget is fine if the item is worth splurging on and you know that the giftee will love it. Like I said, there are always deals and hacks to utilize to bring yourself back within your spending limit. Like the following:

Steals, Deals, & Freebies:

My number one rule of shopping is to always get something extra out of your purchases. Whether that be points on a credit card, a free gift, or a BOGO style deal in store, always always shop smart. Do your research on the promotions that your favorite stores are running in store or online. Is a huge Black Friday sale happening? Maybe wait on that big screen TV, then. Is the deal that you can get online even better than what you could get in store? Then you better grab it before it goes out of stock.

Being aware of what promotions that the stores are running is just half of the trick. A good way to go about whether to wait for Black Friday deals or to purchase now is to think about what sales the store ran last year. I worked four Black Fridays in a row and the stores that I worked at ran the same promotions every year and they still do now. So, if those deals are worth waiting for, hold off until Black Friday or Cyber Monday. If not, and a good sale is running already, buying it now is just fine.

The next thing that you should be concerned with, are the deals that you can get with your credit or store rewards cards. Sometimes, it’s worth applying for a credit card just to do your holiday shopping on it. For example, if you apply for an Amazon credit card and get approved, you get a free fifty dollar gift card to spend on the site. Other credit cards will reward you with points or store credit when you use them. Can your cash do that?

And, finally, always compare in store and online prices before you purchase! Some stores will price match if it is cheaper online. And, other stores, like Sephora offer deals that you could never get in store. I spent fifty dollars on their website and got free shipping, two free samples, and two free really nice gifts for spending a certain amount of money. You should try to get the most bang for your buck whenever you’re shopping and free gifts for yourself never hurts!

Ready, Set, Gift Sets:

Gift sets are the bread and butter of my holiday shopping. They are a crowd and wallet pleaser and they are so fun to assemble. Some stores offer stellar pre-made sets that have a lot of product for not as big of a price tag, and those are great, too. If a family member or friend has a more eclectic taste, gift sets are an excellent way to go, because you can give them an assortment of odds and ends that will speak more to their uniqueness than a gift card. Or, if you’re shopping for nieces or nephews, hit up a Five Below and create a goody bag on a dime. And, always remember, that a nice basket or container is part of the gift so pick something nice that can be used again. 🙂

What are your tips and tricks for holiday shopping? Who has their holiday shopping finished already? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Dollar Tree Deals

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Dollar Tree Deals

Hi! We all know that Lil Red loves to shop but, the trick is, is that I am all about the discount stores to save copious amounts of cash while I partake in my favorite hobby. In today’s post, it’s all about the Washingtons, because I began my Christmas shopping early at the Dollar Tree and got six fairly decent sized candles for a dollar apiece. Check it out:

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The beauty of discount stores, aside from the immense amount of savings from shopping there, is that no one is the wiser when they receive their presents. I plan on attaching sets of three of the above candles with a festive bow as part of gifts for friends and family and, for all they know, I could have gotten them at Target. Not only is the size of the candles relatively big for a dollar deal but, they smell amazing, too! The Pineapple Upside Down Cake is my favorite and I know that it will be a hit for my giftees. 🙂

What is your favorite discount store? Who has started their holiday shopping already? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Featured Image By: Gephardt Daily

Appropriate Gifts For All Occasions

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Appropriate Gifts For All Occasions

There are many gifts to give for holidays, birthdays, and the like that are simple for you to buy and appreciated by the recipient. Unfortunately, some of these items leave you feeling like you didn’t buy an actual gift or you are left wondering how to present it to the person. Use the following tips to ensure that you are going to please everyone on your gift list this year:

Gift Cards:

Nothing makes a better gift than gift cards. You don’t have to worry about getting the right size or color, and the recipient can shop for exactly what they want. However, it doesn’t look like much of a gift. Be creative and tuck gift cards into coffee mugs along with candy or chocolates. Purchase a decorative box and slip it inside, or give it inside of a wallet to add some panache to the presentation.

Sweet Treats:

If you love to bake, cookies and cakes are always a welcomed gift. Presentation is everything in these situations. Purchase decorative plates to put them on and wrap the treat in cellophane tied with a ribbon bow. You can also place them in a basket along with a Christmas ornament or one of the Jim Shore figurines from Coppin’s gifts during the holidays.

Food:

Food makes an ideal get well gift, new home gift, or holiday present. If you are giving an entire meal, put it in a picnic basket or carrier that they can keep. You could also present it on a dish or platter that you purchase just for them. Take advantage of aluminum covered, disposable bakeware too. Put all of the containers in an insulated bag tied shut with a big bow.

By taking a simple gift and going one step further with it, you elevate items like gift cards, baked goods, and food to a new level. Anyone would be pleased to receive these gifts, and no one will accuse you of taking the easy way out when it comes to gift giving.

Last Minute Gifts When You’re In A Bind

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Last Minute Gifts When You’re In A Bind

When life gets ahead of us thanks to a whirlwind schedule, gift purchasing can seem like the last thing on your mind. But, alas, birthdays and holidays still come and go, and gift buying is a necessary part of it. Whether you’re picking something up from a store or online shopping, last minute gift shopping isn’t always a bad thing – as long as you don’t make it glaringly obvious that you did, that is. Check out these tips for when you need to do the last minute gift hustle for your next get together:

Something Fast:

The first option to consider is one which is in place entirely for its speed. Amazon Prime Same Day delivery has started to cover a very wide range of products recently, opening the doors for those with phobias of the outside world to buy things without venturing out. And the best part of these services, is that you will often get your hands on the goods within hours of ordering them. This is perfect for when you have a bit of time at home before you need to present your gift. Of course, when it comes to Amazon, you can often choose to have items gift wrapped, too.

Something Personal:

There are plenty of personal gifts out there which you can give to someone and they will cherish it for a long time. That piece of jewelry or furniture they keep glancing at, for example, could be a great gift, and you don’t have to go and buy it. The odds are that you will own a good range of different items which could inherit heirloom status. Being passed down or across generations, items like these could stay with people you love for hundreds of years, and could even find themselves in the hands of great people down the line.

Avoiding The Physical:

When you’re in a rush, giving something physical may be a mistake. If they live too far away for you to visit, you will have to use the postal service to get their gift to them, and this could be a problem if you’re not careful. Avoiding this is simple, leaving you with loads of great options. For example, subscription services like Spotify, are becoming extremely popular. Giving you access to hundreds of gifts, looking down the digital route can be a great way to avoid missing the big day.

Professional Services:

Companies that are willing to bend over backwards to make you happy can be found everywhere. Professional services, like chocolate making and flower arrangement, are great when you’re looking for gifts for people you love. Companies like Camelback Flowershop have the skills and resources to be able to take and prepare custom orders to be delivered on the same day. Of course, this is based on location, and you will have to find a business close to you. Once you do, though, you will be able to start turning birthdays you miss or forget about into something very special. This sort of gift can be touching when you have it arrive for you.

Something Homemade:

Basing a gift on your hobbies is often a simple matter of putting yourself to work, and will only take a bit of effort once you get into it. Drawing, cooking, singing, and crafts are but a few examples of the choices you have here, giving you a huge range of different gift ideas to choose from. This is something that you will have to dedicate a lot of time to in the short window you have between remembering a birthday and seeing the person who is having it if you want to get it done in time. This will be hard to manage if you have a busy schedule to contend with, but the reaction of your loved one will be so worth it!

Printable Gifts:

If you own a printer, you have the makings for tons of easy gifts which most people will never try. Buying tickets to a musical performance, for example, will often give you the ability to print off the documents from home, rather than having to wait for them to come in the post. Using this sort of gift will give you the chance to choose something personal and well thought out, without having to have the time to spend on making it happen.

Last minute gift shopping can be totally stressful, so use this guide and breeze through your next occasion with ease!

Featured Image By: Unsplash

Smart Buy For Pet Owners

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Smart Buy For Pet Owners

Hi hi hi! For Christmas, my mom got all of the dogs in our family a glowing collar light for late night or early morning walks. During the winter, it is pitch black when nightfall hits and any extra visibility for cars on the road to see our furry friends is a good thing. I had meant to put this purchase from Foster And Smith on the blog many moons ago. I all but forgot about it until my dog, Ollie, managed to turn it on by himself and was walking around our home like a tiny, hairy lantern.

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Ollie: Collar light model extraordinaire

Not only is the collar light a great buy for dogs, but it is also smart for outdoor cats, as well. Keeping your furry friends safe from harm is one of the most important things that we can do as pet owners and these lights are an amazing and easy way to help do just that. 🙂

What kind of pet do you have? What precautions do you take to keep your pets safe? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Holiday Haul Finale: The Room Edition

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Holiday Haul Finale: The Room Edition

Helloooo everyone and welcome to the conclusion of my Holiday Haul, once again compliments of my sister. Kristen was truly the Christmas MVP this year so cue the applause for that wonderful woman! The Room is easily my favorite bad movie ever and it brings me so much joy introducing it to other people. It took Kristen a long time to accept The Room for the hilarity that it is, but her life changed for the better when she finally did.

We recently enjoyed a sister date night to see The Disaster Artist and were in stitches the entire time. Our next “The Room” related festivities include going to the midnight showing of it in Cleveland that happens monthly at an indie theater. I CAN’T WAIT! For Christmas, Kristen gifted me with two of the following prezzies that Tommy Wiseau would be proud of:

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Seen above is a shirt featuring the infamous tagline of “You’re tearing me apart, Lisa” with Tommy Wiseau in a moment of frustrated passion. There is also a homemade card that she ordered from the flower shop “Hi, doggy” scene. If that isn’t prezzie perfect, then I genuinely don’t know what is. Kristen and I were absolutely dying when I opened this gift and I am so excited to finally own some merchandise from The Room!

This Holiday Haul was incredibly successful and I had an amazing time celebrating Christmas with my family. The company, food, and tom foolery was all as good as it can get, and it was definitely one of my favorite Christmases yet.

So there you have it, my Holiday Haul Finale: The Room Edition! Who else is a fan of the infamously bad flick, The Room? What is your favorite cult film? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah