Tag Archives: happy holidays

Last Minute Holiday Gift Ideas

Standard
Last Minute Holiday Gift Ideas

Hiiii! There are less than ten days left until Christmas and that means that it is crunch time for all of the late holiday shoppers. If you haven’t finished your shopping yet, the anxiety definitely might be setting in, considering that most stores are well picked over by now and the shipping dates with online orders will be cutting it close. But, that doesn’t mean that you should throw in the towel just yet and hand over a card with cash to your giftee (Unless that’s what they really want!). So, here are some last minute gift ideas to help with your holiday shopping:

A Framed Photo:

Nothing is more sentimental and sweet than some of your favorite pictures of you and the giftee set in a beautiful frame. Purchase a photo collage frame or even make your own and give your loved one a reminder of your friendship and happy memories. This gift is well thought out, it’s easy to buy as most stores have frames to purchase and ways to print your photos, and it will surely be treasured by your giftee.

Add To Their Hobby:

So you’re in a bind to finish your shopping and your giftee has a hobby that they absolutely love. This is probably the best situation to be in, because that will make for a really simple purchase. Do they have a record player? Buy a few new records for them to jam to. How about a Polaroid camera? Get them some more film. Or maybe they love acting on stage? Grab them a few plays from the book store so they can discover a new monologue. Buying according to the hobby is a great way to go and it will always be well received because it’s so useful to the giftee.

The Basics:

We all know the standard Christmas gifts well. Booze, candles, fuzzy socks, knitwear, etc. But, they are staple prezzies for a reason, and are a fine way to go when you just need to finish up your shopping already. As an avid wine lover, there are some gorgeous bottles around this time of year with holiday sentiment on it, which will make for a lovely gift to enjoy during Christmas dinner. Throw in a few candles to light on the table and you’re done!

Family Fun:

Spending Christmas day with your family can seem like a daunting task for some, so maybe you can buy a gift that will spice things up a bit. Buy some fun classic or modern board games and have a tournament with your fam. Or maybe get some adult coloring books or art supplies and have a crafting contest. These gifts are wholesome and perfect for a day spent with your family – unless someone likes to cheat at Monopoly!

Sigh… Gift Cards:

Okay. You’ve been to every store and there is nothing left to purchase that’s even remotely close to what your giftee would want. You check all of the online sites and all of the shipping dates can only make it to your home in 2019. This is bleak, and it means that you might have to go for the gift card route. If you must use this option, make it a little adventure for the giftee. If you give them a card to their favorite clothing store, for example, tell them that you’ll come with and treat them to a coffee date beforehand for some pre-shopping fuel. Gift cards often lack any warm fuzzies behind them so add a little something something to make it a bit more special. πŸ™‚

Christmas will be here ASAFP, so use the ideas above and, for the love of god, get your shopping done!

When did you finish your holiday shopping? How early into the year do you start your purchasing? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Advertisements

Traditions It’s Okay To Break During Christmas

Standard
Traditions It’s Okay To Break During Christmas

Hi everyone! Today’s post is guest written by my sweet friend, Ester. Her blog is excellent and chock full of gorgeous photos, travel, and well written passages. So, do be sure to check out her page and give it some love! Please enjoy this lovely guest post and if you are interested in sharing your work on lifewithlilred, shoot me an email at: sarah.mush6794@gmail.com !

Dear World,

A week or so ago, I was talking to my boss about sales at Christmas time and how that’s having an impact on how we exchange presents now compared to previous years. This conversation then made me think about all of the little traditions I’ve been changing and adapting every year and how I now live the Christmas period today. It is very interesting how we all try to follow the traditions because that’s what makes us human (that is, culture) but we also want to adapt them to our modern world.

I’m personally very okay with breaking the rules, I’ve been doing that my whole life. I like traditions with a twist. On the one hand, I love how comfortable and homey it feels following a ritual, but I also want to change my lifestyle for the best. Moreover, spending the Christmas holidays in other countries and being exposed to other cultures had an impact on how I now spend my time in December. So without further ado, here are the traditions that I am okay breaking this Christmas:

Ordering your Christmas dinner online:

Last year I spent hours cooking what I really wanted to be an absolute wonder of a meal. I slow-cooked the lamb and I tried my best to make a chestnut puree. It took me a whole afternoon of grocery shopping and a whole morning spent in the kitchen to go through all of that. The result, though, was a disaster. I think I put so much pressure on myself because I really wanted to somehow cook this Masterchef dinner that I screwed it all up. The meat was not tender and the puree was just uneatable. Somehow, I managed to finish it out of compassion and pity.

This year. I’m not going to repeat that experience or decide that I’ll magically become a chef in no time. That’s why my Christmas dinner will be kindly and lovingly prepared by Waitrose and Partners. I’m sure it will be much better than what I could ever cook myself. We will eat it at our place, next to the Christmas tree while drinking a good bottle of Prosecco. I’ll have the morning to relax and call all of my family and friends in Italy and I won’t be panicking in the kitchen. I, too, deserve to enjoy my Christmas morning.

ester

Exchanging gifts after Christmas:

This is actually the topic that led me to write this post in the first place. Here in London families are now embracing a new tradition: instead of exchanging presents on Christmas day, they organise a shopping trip to the mall on Boxing Day (or the week after Christmas) to buy each other what they really want at a cheaper price. If you think about it, that’s a win-win situation: everyone will receive what they want and the cost will be heavily reduced by the sales.

I know, I agree that is very nice and special to open your presents on Christmas day but, hey, you could have one gift under the tree and the rest at the Boxing Day sales. I, myself, have decided to wait a bit longer to buy my own Christmas present this year (I always treat myself to something special) because, by waiting a week or two I can buy my gift at half price. So, why not?

ester6If you’re in London for Christmas, try and find Harry Potter’s magic wand!

Eating way too much:

My relationship with food used to be quite complicated. I’m now fine but, if I eat too much, my stomach hurts badly. To be fair, I suppose it’s quite normal. If we eat too much, we don’t feel great at all. That’s why I always need to make sure I don’t cross that line at Christmas. I really hate feeling nauseated with stomach pain and a heavy head during the holidays. Also, I don’t want to ruin all of the hard work that I’ve been doing for the past few weeks.

This means, that I’ll do my best to go running once a week. But, I will also make sure that I won’t have three slices of Panettone in one day. I’m sure you know your limits, as well.

ester3ester4

Wrapping paper:

I’m not very good at leading an environmentally-friendly lifestyle but, after living in London for almost two years, I understand the importance and urgency to do so. Here in the city, everything is wrapped in plastic or paper. Every single lunch has some plastic in it and we all abuse the use of plastic bottles. It was a friend of mine who made me notice it and it’s very true, so I’m now trying to be more sensitive to that matter.

For this reason, I’m also considering what to do with wrapping paper. Not all wrapping paper can be recycled. Foil or glitter-decorated paper cannot be recycled and the same goes if there’s sticky tape or decorations on it. My suggestion here would be to make sure you buy wrapping paper that can be recycled easily – even better if that’s made with recycled paper.

ester2ester5

Of course, I understand the huge importance of traditions in our life and I, myself, love gathering together with my family to spend a wonderful Christmas together. However, traditions can be adapted to lifestyle and personal preferences. At the end of the day, what really counts is that we all spend a memorable day surrounded by the people we love the most because that’s what will make us happy.

What do you think? Are there any traditions that you are going to break or bend this Christmas? Let me know what your plans are for the holidays!

Best,

Ester Piubeni

My website: esterpiubeni.com

My Instagram account: ester_piubeni

Thank you again to Ester for her guest post on lifewithlilred! Happy holidays! Much love. -Sarah

Oh, Christmas Tree

Standard
Oh, Christmas Tree

Hiiii! With the holidays right around the corner, I thought that I would share with all of you what my family Christmas tree looks like. Fortunately for me, I get to see it year round, because we never take our tree down. In fact, my family has gotten into the habit of putting other holiday themed decor on it like Easter eggs and Happy Harvest gear for fall. So, don’t be surprised if you see some ornaments that don’t quite belong! Haha, take a look:

oh2oh4oh7ohoh1oh6oh5oh3

As you can see, we have a very large collection of ornaments on the Mushenheim family tree! My dad loves travel themed ornaments and I always try and get him one on every vacation we go on or any trips that I take by myself. Most of my siblings have followed suit on that tradition, so my dad has ornaments from all of our travels. So fun!

Other than the vacation ornaments, many of the ones that are on our tree date back to decor from both sets of my grandparents and from when my siblings and I were little. I think that, despite it being a little quirky, all of us like having the tree up at home, because it’s just one of our “things”. And, it’s nice to feel some holiday cheer no matter what the season is. πŸ™‚

Do you have any travel themed ornaments on your tree? Do you have a favorite ornament in your collection? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

All Done Christmas Shopping!

Standard
All Done Christmas Shopping!

Woohoo! That’s right, I am All Done Christmas Shopping! I actually finished up about two weeks ago but I had so many posts pre-written that I’m just now getting to this announcement. It should come as no surprise that I jump at every opportunity that I can get to shop so, as soon as November first rolled around, I began my quest to cross off all of the people that I needed to shop for on my list.

For the past few years, I have strictly been doing online shopping. But, this year, I actually hit a few shops for some purchases and I enjoyed it! My theory behind online shopping was that I would beat the crowds entirely by just not going to stores altogether. However, doing some in store shopping in early November was completely pleasant, because no one was in the mad scramble to get their buying done like it is in December. It was also nice to shop at a few discount stores to save some money on little odds and ends that were needed to tie some gifts together.

Although in store shopping was a welcomed change of pace, Amazon pulled through for me, just as they always do year after year. All of the items that I ordered were shipped on time, arrived at my home in perfect condition, and were all reasonably priced. It also makes me happy to know that the gifts that I purchased online cannot be found in any stores nearby. That means that each present feels one of a kind and those are my favorite types of gifts to give!

Now, all that’s left to do is wrap all of the presents up, drink some spiked hot chocolate, and fantasize about my credit card bill getting lost in the mail! πŸ˜€

Who else is done holiday shopping? Are you an early or late holiday shopper? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Happy New Year!!

Standard
Happy New Year!!

Hellooooo everyone and welcome to 2018! Here’s to hoping that this is your best year yet, that you keep up with your resolutions, and that you accomplish great things in the new year. Enjoy your celebrations and thanks for sticking around with lifewithlilred! Much love. -Sarah

Seasons Greetings!

Standard
Seasons Greetings!

Hello everyone and Merry Christmas! I wanted to write a quick post to wish everyone the happiest of holidays. Whatever you celebrate and however you spend your day, I hope that you have the most amazing time doing it! Enjoy your day with your family or if it’s just a normal day for you, make it your best yet. Happy holidays!! Much love. -Sarah

The Christmas Tag

Standard
The Christmas Tag

Hi everyone! I recently got nominated for The Christmas Tag by my darling friend, Vera, over at Love Live Laugh. Being an avid lover of the holiday season, I just had to participate! The rules state to nominate other bloggers, but I say feel free to join in the tag if you choose to spread the fun! Take a look at the rules and let’s discuss:

The Rules:

  • Copy this post
  • Answer the questions
  • Nominate 5 bloggers or more

Q & A:

What’s your best Christmas memory? I love watching my loved ones open their presents. It seriously never gets old!

Your favorite sweet treat? Peppermint Mocha drinks from Starbucks and a well made White Russian.

White Christmas or on the beach? Christmas at my house with no snow!!

Family or out for a wild party? Family. A million times family!

Are you cooking or not? Oh yes, I love to cook – especially during the holidays.

Thank you so much again to Vera for nominating me for The Christmas Tag! If you would like to participate, no nomination is needed. Have fun and happy holidays! Much love. -Sarah