Tag Archives: holidays

Mini Halloween Haul

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Mini Halloween Haul

Hello! It is spooky season all year long in mine and Johnny’s world and the decor in our apartment reflects this. We love all things horror and true crime and Halloween is the happiest time of the year for us. Now that we are settled comfortably in our new apartment, we really wanted to upgrade our spooky decor since we have so much more additional space.

After a wildly successful haul at Marc’s, a discount store in my neck of the woods, I was itching to go back. I got all kinds of cool Halloween goodies and the best part was seeing the same items I purchased at Walgreen’s for triple the cost. The haul below costed me a whole ten bucks at Marc’s and from the Akron Zoo when I went with my nieces and sister. You can peep the OOTD from our outing tomorrow! Now, let’s take a look-see at my new Halloween treats – no tricks necessary!

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^^^ The little ghost and pumpkin are from the zoo, the rest is from Marc’s.

My Johnny has a huge collection of Halloween themed socks and he actually just bought a ton more from TJMaxx when we went last week. I was so proud! I’d be a liar if I said that I wasn’t a tad jealous so I was so happy to find some socks of my own at Marc’s. They are also the same brand of the Frankenstein socks that Johnny surprised me with last year and that I’m currently wearing right now! While my collection will never achieve Johnny level, it’s a pretty good start. 😀

The skull candles were a whopping two for a dollar and I am obsessed with them. 1) Talk about a STEAL and 2) they will be perfect for our scary movie marathons every weekend! The piece de resistance of my haul, however, is the skeleton hand candle holder. This costed me two dollars and I couldn’t believe my good luck. It reminded me so much of this year’s Bath & Body Works Halloween line and probably would have been selling for twenty or more bucks from there. Talk about an amazing find!

And, finally, who knew you could find some Halloween cuteness at the zoo?! At the Akron Zoo, you have to exit through the gift shop and it’s a total money trap lol. I love spoiling my nieces with a new stuffed animal every time we go, though, so what can ya do except buy a treat for yourself too! Every year, Johnny and I work on instilling a love of Halloween in our oldest niece, Val. It’s definitely working and she picked out the pumpkin for herself. She also plays with the decorations on our spooky shelf whenever she comes over. Proud aunt and uncle alert!! ❤

Not bad for a ten dollar haul, right? Mine and Johnny’s apartment is filling up nicely with Halloween decor and it is what we have always wanted. A local discount store with the coolest spooky treats is really helping the cause!

What is your favorite discount store? Do you have your Halloween decorations out yet? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Happy Eight Year Blogiversary, lifewithlilred!

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Happy Eight Year Blogiversary, lifewithlilred!

Hello everyone!! On September 13th, lifewithlilred celebrated its Eight Year Blogiversary!! As I mentioned before, I had totally forgot about it so you could imagine my surprise when I got that notification lol. For almost an entire decade now, I have carved out a little niche of the internet for lifestyle, fashion, and fun and I am so proud of that. For the past several years, I have also been posting daily content and that is such a huge personal accomplishment too.

For eight years, my wonderful readers have been with me for so many milestones. Graduating college, new jobs, nieces and nephews being born, and getting married just to name a few. All of these moments were special but they were even better because I got to celebrate them with each and every one of you. Even the not so great stuff seems easier to bear when I can go to my page and vent about it!

Every single morning, I am excited to sit down and write before going to work and I couldn’t imagine a day without checking in. I have made so many dear friends through the blogosphere, which was a main goal of starting my page in the first place. Everything else just seems like an amazing cherry on top and I feel very lucky.

I am so thankful to all of you who have been tuning in with me for years or who have just discovered lifewithlilred today. This blog is just as much for you as it is for me. So, keep sticking around and I can’t wait to see what kind of fun we can get into – especially with my decade Blogiversary just two years away! I love you all so much and thank you for being a part of what makes lifewithlilred so special. ❤

Happy Eight Year Blogiversary, lifewithlilred!! ❤

Marc’s Halloween Haul

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Marc’s Halloween Haul

Hello! In my neck of the woods, there is a discount store called Marc’s that offers everything from food and clothing to toys and home goods. This past week, they also had a ton of Halloween goodies that I just had to snag for the apartment. Everything was SO cute and also way cheaper than anything you would find at TJMaxx and Walmart. Take a look:

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It is Halloween year round in mine and Johnny’s home and our decor includes skeletons, pumpkins, ghosts, ghouls, and a Jason Voorhees cardboard cutout lol. Our neighbor gave us this life size likeness and it still freaks me out sometimes! I have taken it upon myself to freshen up our Halloween stock pile this year and just couldn’t say no to the above purchases – especially considering I got all of them for under twenty-five dollars. 😀

I am particularly partial to the glittery hanging skeleton with the bow tie and Johnny loves the skeleton and scepter statue. Our niece, Valerie, always wants to play with our ghost figurines when she comes over so I think she will be a huge fan of the “BOO” ghost statue! As soon as I brought this haul home, it was like a kid in a candy store and Johnny added them to our spooky shelves throughout the apartment. SO. Precious!

While chain stores might have a bigger selection of Halloween goodies, don’t write off the discount stores. I have never seen anything like my purchases at Marc’s elsewhere so you are sure to find some very unique pieces if you know where to look. Now, is it Halloween yet?!

Where is your favorite place to shop for seasonal decor? How do you decorate for Halloween? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

 

Perfect Gifts For The Writer In Your Life

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Perfect Gifts For The Writer In Your Life

If you are trying to think of a gift to buy a writer, there are a few options that might spring to mind. But you probably want to buy them something a little different, especially if they already ‘have it all’ in terms of writing gifts. In this post, we are going to take a look at some of the best gift options you might want to consider when you are looking for something for the writer in your life:

Special Pen:

This is the kind of gift that is always going to go down well with any writer in the world. Most people will appreciate a special pen that they can call their own, but nobody quite as much as a writer. If they haven’t already got a special pen, then this is definitely something you should consider buying them. Make sure that it is a proper fountain pen, one which is going to last a long time and which they can refill with ink as necessary. This will help encourage them to actually use it.

Unique Notebook:

Chances are, your writer already has a lot of notebooks and you are going to need to make sure that you are keeping things a little different. They probably don’t want another Moleskine, and you would be surprised to discover how many they already have that you don’t know about! However, going down a slightly different route might prove useful – such as getting them a notebook which has been personalized just for them, perhaps with a monogram or something similar.

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^^^ Pexels Image

Tickets To A Reading Or Book Launch:

If your writer has a preferred author, then you might want to look out for some event or reading that they have coming up, especially if that author has a book coming out. This is the kind of event that writers tend to love! If nothing else, it can be a kind of date, so that is definitely something to think about if your writer is also your partner. Either way, it’s a gift they will be sure to remember.

Online Writing Course:

Finally, writers are always looking to improve their skills, so they might appreciate being given the chance to do so. It’s a good idea to get them booked into a writing course, but you will need to make sure that you choose one that they are likely to enjoy and get a lot out of. If you can do that right, you will find that they really appreciate it, so it’s definitely something that you can think about. It’s a gift they’ll use every time they write!

The writer on your shopping list will love any of the above – take it from me!

Featured Image By: Pexels

Early Holiday Shopping Pro Tips

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Early Holiday Shopping Pro Tips

Hello! While Halloween is always at the forefront of my mind, it is never too early to think about Christmas! In fact, I have already began crossing a few people off of my shopping list and it is a necessary feat – I have a lot of giftees. Beginning the process of holiday shopping early prevents you from having a huge bill come December. These money saving tips and other clever hints will also help the cause:

Make the most of seasonal sales:

If you are looking for seasonal deals, then right now is the perfect time to do some shopping – especially if your giftee is a fan of summer. To ring in the changing season, summer clothing, outdoor activities, pool floats, and gardening/grilling gear will all be discounted. Why pay more later when you can just pay less right now? Similarly, if you have a lover of fall in the family, November is a great time to shop for them as fall items will be discounted to welcome the winter.

Stockpile points:

I buy everything exclusively with my Amazon credit card and each purchase gives me money to spend online. Rather than use my points for every random Amazon order, I have began stockpiling points and I can’t believe I haven’t done this sooner. I got a gift for my husband and best friend completely free of charge. There is nothing better than checking an item off of your list and getting it for free to boot!

Sales are your friend:

This should go without saying but it needs repeating. If you see something on sale that a giftee would love, then go for it. If you hold off, then chances are that the item will be sold out or you will have to buy it at full price later. I saved over one hundred dollars by shopping a sale at Old Navy to get some Halloween themed pajamas for Johnny. If you are concerned that the sale price will drop lower, talk to a store employee. Many stores offer a grace period after your purchase to do an adjustment if the price drops again.

Shop local:

If you have grown bored of shopping at local chain stores, then try your hand at shopping locally or through Etsy. You will walk away with a one of a kind piece and you will be sure that your giftee doesn’t have it already. For example, my best friend and I have been celebrating fourteen years of birthdays and Christmases. We have gone through every common gift option possible and I decided to break that cycle by buying her some art from Falcon Grove Studios for her birthday. The paintings were beautiful, supported a local artist, and she absolutely loved them.

Become a rewards member:

While the constant emails from stores that you have a rewards membership through are annoying, they can be very helpful. Lots of stores offer perks for their rewards customers including additional discounts, free shipping, double point days, and free product. As already stated, sales are your friend and if you can get even more of a discount, then why not? I have a stockpile of free Bath & Body Works products that I use as add on gifts simply because I’m a rewards member!

Store your gifts safely:

Getting a head start on holiday shopping means that you are going to have to hang on to your purchases for a while. To avoid clutter, clear out a designated space at home to store your gifts. The place you choose should be safe from prying eyes, pets, and areas that could be prone to water damage or pests. It would be a shame for your gift to get ruined before you even have a chance to give it!

It might be September, but I have already been bit by the Christmas bug and that is fine by me. Come December, I will be sipping hot chocolate and watching Elf with zero pressure of last minute gifts!

Are you an early or last minute gift buyer? When do you usually start your holiday shopping? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

The Benefits Of Family Togetherness During The Holidays

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The Benefits Of Family Togetherness During The Holidays

The holidays are a time for family, friends, and loved ones to come together and celebrate. It’s a time for happiness, joy, and good cheer. But it’s also a time for reflection. A time to look back on the year that has passed and think about all that has happened. It’s a time to think about the future and what lies ahead. And what better way to reflect on the past year and plan for the future than by spending time with those you love most?

There are many benefits to spending time with family during the holidays. Although we’re nowhere near Christmastime yet, we are very close to Christmas In July so you can experience them early! This article will explore just a few of them and how you can make the most of this special time with your loved ones:

Strengthens relationships:

The holiday season is a special time when families come together to celebrate their traditions and strengthen their relationships. Spending time together fosters communication and bonding, two essential ingredients for any strong relationship. The holidays are also a time when families can relax and enjoy each other’s company, free from the demands of work and school.

In today’s busy world, finding quality time to spend with our loved ones can be difficult. But the holidays offer a perfect opportunity to slow down, relax, and focus on what truly matters – family. By making the most of our time together, we can create cherished memories that will last a lifetime.

Increases morale:

For some, the holidays can be a stressful time. There’s the pressure to buy the perfect gifts, cook the perfect meal, and create the perfect holiday experience. This stress can take a toll on our physical and mental health. But spending time with our families during the holidays can reduce stress and increase our morale.

Family togetherness helps us to relax and enjoy. We can laugh and have fun together. We can reminisce about past holidays and create new traditions. And we can show our loved ones how much we care about them. So if you’re feeling stressed this holiday season, take some time to spend with your family. It will do wonders for your morale.

Allows for reflection on the past year:

The holidays are a wonderful time to reconnect with family and friends. They offer a chance to reflect on the past year and set goals for the coming year. For many people, the holidays are also a time to express their gratitude for what they have.

One of the best ways to show your loved ones how much you care is to spend quality time together. This doesn’t mean that you have to be together every minute of the day; simply being in each other’s company can be a great way to show your love and appreciation.

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Many activities can help promote family togetherness during the holidays. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

Watching Christmas movies together:

Christmas movies are a staple of the holiday season. They offer a chance to escape the world’s reality and enjoy some good old fashioned family fun. So why not gather the family around the television and enjoy a few of your favorites? You can even make it a tradition to watch the same movies yearly.

Baking holiday cookies:

One of the best things about the holidays is the delicious food. Baking holiday cookies is an awesome activity for the whole family. You teach your children how to bake and they get to eat the cookies when they’re done. It’s a chance to spend time together and create yummy treats that everyone will enjoy.

Get professional pictures together:

Getting photographs together is a fantastic method to preserve the Christmas holidays memories. Hiring professional photographers can be expensive but might be nice to do every few years. Hiring a professional photo editor to edit pictures of your kids and family members might also be a good idea. This will ensure that the pictures are high quality and capture the spirit of the holidays.

The holidays are a time for family, friends, and fun. Make the most of your time together and enjoy all of the benefits of it!

Final Birthday Hurrah

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Final Birthday Hurrah

Hello! Unfortunately, I didn’t get to celebrate my birthday on the day of with my sister and her family due to a bout with COVID. Once they were ten days out, however, we had a wonderful late birthday outing together. I was treated by Kristen, Ramon, and my darling niece Valerie to a delicious dinner at my favorite restaurant, the Saffron Patch. It is the most divine Indian food that I have ever had and I savored every bite. I was also gifted with a TJMaxx gift card (Bless!), a sticker adorned card compliments of Val, and this gorgeous Betsey Johnson necklace:

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Betsey Johnson has always been one of my favorite brands and I love her quirky, bright designs. There is nothing like a Betsey accessory to add a fun pop to any OOTD and I have several of her purses, shoes, and jewelry. When I opened up the box containing my new necklace, I couldn’t believe my eyes… I had actually just been drooling over it during my last shopping trip at TJMaxx. Talk about sister telepathy, right? 😀

I am obsessed with this necklace and it is so different from all of my other Betsey accessories – most of them have skulls and snakes as the focal point lol! The sweet gem stoned hearts are SO. Freaking. Cute. and remind me of the plastic star and heart jewelry of my youth (In the best way possible!). Another amazing thing about this necklace is that you can put it on over your head without undoing the clasp. We all know that that is a difficult task for me with my claws!

My new necklace is perfect for adding candy dream colors to a neutral base and I can’t wait to see it shine against white, black, and grey. I had a great time celebrating my birthday with three of my favorite people in the whole world and my festivities ended on the best note possible. ❤

What is your favorite accessory brand? How would you style this necklace? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Best Friend Birthday Gift

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Best Friend Birthday Gift

Hello! I had a blast celebrating my birthday last week and had plans to hang out with people almost every night. Needless to say, I am exhausted and am done socializing for the next couple of weeks lol! On Friday, my best friend and her husband came over for a game night and I was gifted with this super thoughtful prezzie from Lea:

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Lea and I have been best friends since freshman year of high school, which is fourteen years of celebrating birthdays and holidays together. We absolutely love to spoil each other for special occasions and it has been that way for as long as I can remember. For my birthday, Lea outdid herself with a paint by numbers kit and a delicious looking bottle of blueberry moscato. Yum!

I have heard of paint by numbers projects before but have never tried one and I can’t wait. It looks like such fun and is a delightful nod to the many craft nights that Lea and I have shared together. In fact, several of the canvases on my apartment’s art wall are from said best friend craft nights and I can’t wait to complete and hang up my new painting… If it turns out good lol. And, of course, the bottle of wine is the perfect compliment to make it a wine and paint night – which we have also participated in together! 😀

Lea is one of the most incredible people and we have been there for each other through thick and thin. Boyfriends, college, new jobs, and marriage are all things that we have tackled together and I wouldn’t want anyone else by my side. Fourteen birthdays are almost officially in the books after her special day in late August and I can’t wait for fourteen more. I love you!!!

How long have you and your best friend been friends for? Have you ever tried a paint by numbers kit before? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

 

Birthday Bouquet

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Birthday Bouquet

Hello! After a glorious month and a half or so with a lighter work schedule, I am back into the swing of things and have taken on two new families in the past month. The down time was much needed so I could pack up the old apartment and unpack in our new one because Johnny was working SO much overtime. Not to mention that a break was just what I needed for my own mental health.

For the first time in years last week, I worked on my birthday. Of course, I could have taken the day off but I was so eager to start with one of my new families that I couldn’t stand to wait one more day! This was a really cool change of pace for me and it felt good to be excited for work days. On Tuesday, I was surprised by receiving a gorgeous bouquet and birthday donuts from my new family. It was the nicest thing!!

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^^^ Lol, I didn’t have a vase so I had to resort to using a water bottle SMH!

I don’t know about you, but I love to get flowers. They are such a lovely way to let someone know that you were thinking of them. I can’t help but to smile every time that I look at my birthday bouquet and the flowers still look as beautiful as the day I brought them home. The “vase” might not do the bouquet justice but, hey, you work with what you’ve got!

I learned the merit of receiving flowers from an early age. My dad always makes my mom the prettiest wildflower bouquets from his garden and will expertly arrange store bought flowers during the cold months. Seeing his arrangements on the kitchen table never failed to make me happy and it added the perfect touch of sunshine to the day.

I was so touched by this kind gesture from my new family and will have that reminder every day now. Because you all know that I love me some dried flowers too! ❤

What is your favorite flower? How do you show a loved one that you care? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Happy Birthday, Best Friend!!

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Happy Birthday, Best Friend!!

Hello everyone!! Today is a special, wonderful day because it is my best friend, Kate’s, birthday! Kate is the fabulous author behind Live In The Nautical and I am thankful every day for how we were connected through the magical blogosphere. Kate and I have been besties since lifewithlilred was created almost eight years ago and a friendship like this is why I started my page in the first place.

The crazy thing about mine and Kate’s best friend status is that we have only met each other in person once several years ago. However, when we are having our five hour long FaceTime dates and textathons, it is like she is right there hanging out in my new apartment. Blogging is so special because it gives you the opportunity to form friendships like this and that novelty has yet to wear off close to a decade later.

Kate is one of the most kind, thoughtful, hilarious, fashion savvy gals that I have ever met. While we both agree that birthdays should be celebrated all month long, she truly deserves to be celebrated every day. Her work ethic inspires me and, despite both of our crazy schedules, we are never too busy for each other and I know that I can go to her for anything. Although my Gemini twin spoiled me for my birthday, she is the best gift in the whole world.

I love you darling best friend and I just know that this will be the best year yet!!

Happy Birthday!!!!! ❤