Tag Archives: surprise

Hagrid’s Hut Harry Potter LEGO Set

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Hagrid’s Hut Harry Potter LEGO Set

Hi! Johnny and I love to build with LEGO and we were so generously gifted with the Hagrid’s Hut set from Harry Potter for Christmas. Although it was a much smaller set than what we’re used to, it took us a good three and a half hours plus to finish it and it was such fun to be doing something other than watching TV! Just because it was a small set doesn’t mean that it was any less challenging to assemble and there were lots of exciting surprises incorporated throughout the build. I think it turned out awesome! Take a look at the finished product and let’s discuss:

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Johnny and I have wanted to begin expanding our Hogwarts grounds for a while now and Hagrid’s Hut is the perfect set to start with. It has been sitting on our coffee table since its completion and I can’t help but smile every time I look at it because it is so freaking cool! It really is a to the T replica of Chez Hagrid’s in LEGO form and I almost forgot the sense of achievement and the downright fun that comes with building with LEGOs because it has been so long since we got a new set.

I am particularly fond of the pumpkin patch with Buckbeak and his passenger, the Minister of Magic. He is definitely not supposed to be on top of the hippogriff but, hey, whatever works! I am also completely charmed by all of Hagrid’s tools and utensils hanging from the rafters in his sitting room. The piece de resistance of this set, however, has to be the light up brick used to mimic the fire heating up Hagrid’s dragon egg. All you need to do is press on the rooftop above from the fire place and it lights up. It is such an awesome, simple idea and it still delights me every time I light the fire!

I would highly recommend the LEGO Hagrid’s Hut set if you have a Harry Potter LEGO collection, too. It is also a really nice beginner’s set if you have never built with LEGO before. Johnny and I are very eager to keep expanding Hogwarts and this just lit that fire even more… See what I did there?!

Who else enjoys building with LEGO? Did anyone watch the competition show LEGO Masters? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Holiday Haul: Boyfriend Edition

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Holiday Haul: Boyfriend Edition

Hello! I am so happy that I got to celebrate another Christmas with my boyfriend, Johnny. He means the absolute world to me and I love him so much. After months of asking him if I could tell him what I got him for Christmas, we finally made a deal to open our presents to each other on the afternoon of the 24th. So, you could imagine my surprise when he came home from work on the 22nd and said we should open our gifts now!

Not only is he getting me a new game for the Nintendo Switch as well as a year’s subscription to Duolingo Plus, he also treated me to the following:

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As soon as I opened my guillotine earrings, I gasped because I have had my eye on them for forever. In fact, I have at least five screenshots saved to remind myself to purchase them whenever they show up on my Facebook newsfeed. The first thing that came out of my mouth was “how did you know?!” because I can’t remember ever telling Johnny how much I liked them. He told me when he saw it on his Facebook he knew that I would love them and that made this gift as well as the matching necklace even more special. He knows me like the back of his hand. ❤

I am so excited to pick out a new game to play on the Switch because I have already beaten the Paper Mario game that Johnny got me for our one year anniversary. I will have to do some browsing before I make my choice but I am definitely thinking more Mario! And, finally, the subscription to Duolingo Plus really takes the cake because for one full year I won’t have to worry about running out of hearts while I practice French, Italian, Spanish, German, and Czech. It will be so handy and SO freaking appreciated and I plan on starting a new language to learn since I’ll have the extra cushion of unlimited hearts. I am currently debating between Swedish, Latin, or Greek!

My Johnny knows how to spoil me and I feel like the luckiest girl ever. Duolingo Plus is exactly what I wanted and a new game and jewelry are exactly what I needed even though I didn’t know it yet! Is he the best boyfriend ever or what? ❤

How do you and your SO celebrate the holidays? What is your favorite game for the Switch? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Holiday Haul: Surprise Gift Edition

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Holiday Haul: Surprise Gift Edition

Hello!! For those of you who don’t know, my “big girl” job is as an Independent Provider for people with special needs. I am proud to say that I have worked throughout the entirety of this pandemic and I am even prouder of my county’s board of Developmental Disabilities for taking such good care of all of their employees. From care packages filled with PPE as well as wonderful donations of games and crafting supplies to help keep our clients entertained, we have not been without during the pandemic and it is SO, so, so appreciated.

As if all of the supplies and encouraging emails weren’t enough, my county’s DD board provided us providers with a special gift for the holidays. I was so surprised by this generosity and I am in love with my prezzies picked out just for us. Check it out:

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For my surprise gift, I received a beautiful travel mug filled with caramel and chocolate covered popcorn. I also got the most comfortable pair of socks I have ever owned with “Making A Difference” on one foot and “It’s What I Do!” on the other. How awesome is that?! This gift absolutely touched me and not only did I feel appreciated for the work that I do but it put me in the best mood all day. I was so eager for Johnny to come home from work to show off my spoils and the discovery that my new socks are perfect for sliding around on our hard wood floors!

I love my job so much and would never expect anything in return and I think that’s why these presents mean so much to me. I can’t wait to fill up my travel mug with hot coffee in the morning because I already know it will put a smile on my face. How can the sweet messages printed on the front and back not?!

What makes you feel appreciated? How has your job changed throughout the pandemic? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Sweet Surprises: Starbucks Drive Thru Edition

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Sweet Surprises: Starbucks Drive Thru Edition

Hellooooo! Once Starbucks busts out their seasonal drinks during the holidays, I have to stop by at least once or twice (or ten times) to get a Peppermint Mocha. It is my absolute favorite drink from there that isn’t iced coffee and I can feel myself getting more into the holiday spirit with each sip of essentially caffeinated hot chocolate.

About five years ago, a Starbucks opened up right down the street from me and it was pretty much the best thing that ever happened in my neck of the woods. The convenience is, obviously, amazing. But, what I love most of all are the delightful employees that work there. I have made many friends via the neighborhood Starbucks and I think it’s safe to say that I just made a new one during my last stop at the drive thru. Check it out:

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When I was younger and to this day, I love running errands with my mom. One of the big things that I can remember in my youth is how my mom made an effort to talk to the employees that were helping us. Whether it be chatting about their day or offering a compliment, I could always tell that the workers felt happy after talking to my mom and that inspired me to follow in her footsteps. Why not make someone’s day with a few encouraging words? When I worked retail, I was so appreciative of the customers who would go out of their way to talk to me so I know first hand how good it feels to have someone be kind while I was on the clock.

The past few times I went to the Starbucks drive thru, the same guy took my order and he was so nice – not just to me but to all of the customers. When he asked about my day, I could tell he was genuinely interested and it was like a breath of fresh air. I couldn’t not say anything and I let him know that he has made my day every time I stop by and that I really appreciate it. When I received my drink at the window, I was informed that there was a little note on my cup:

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How sweet is that?!

Whenever you want to say something nice to someone, just say it. You have no idea what that person could be going through and it might help turn their entire day around. I was in a great mood all day from just one kind gesture and I think my new friend had a better day for it, too. The world needs more positivity right now so spread it in any way you can. As you can see, even the smallest things are super effective! ❤

What was the last Random Act Of Kindness you made? How do you like to make someone’s day? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Sweet Surprises: A Thanksgiving Stowaway Edition

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Sweet Surprises: A Thanksgiving Stowaway Edition

Hello!! Sadly, Johnny and I were not able to attend Thanksgiving with my family and it really, really sucked. It was so hard to visit my loved ones outside and not be able to hug them and enjoy the day together. It was especially difficult to not be able to hold my niece, Valerie, because she is my lil BFF and I have never not held her whenever I see her since she has been born.

My parents were nice enough to drop Thanksgiving dinner off on mine and Johnny’s doorstep and it wasn’t until the following day that I noticed a little stowaway on the bag they sent over:

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Valerie loves playing with stickers and her and my sister stuck this little guy from Trolls onto our to go bag. I didn’t notice it right away because it was on the backside of it and it made me so happy when I finally saw this “hi auntie” message from my niece.

The little things really do make the best sweet surprises. I wish I could have been there to hear Val say “uh oh” when one of her stickers ripped and I am so ready for Christmas so I can be there when her and her parents open all of her prezzies.

This Thanksgiving was straight up not a good time for me or Johnny and I am sharing these stories to help remind and encourage people to continue wearing their masks and social distance. The food, my sticker stowaway, and being with Johnny made the day not the worst but our Thanksgiving would have been so much better had we been able to celebrate traditionally.

Regardless, my sweet surprise from my niece and sister definitely helped perk me up. It is also a nice reminder that even the smallest gestures can have such a great impact. Be kind to everyone because you have no idea what they’re going through. Who knows, you might be helping make their bad day just that little bit better. 🙂

How did you safely celebrate Thanksgiving? What are you looking forward to as the year comes to a close? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Sweet Surprises: Silly Stuff Edition

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Sweet Surprises: Silly Stuff Edition

Hello! One of the most fun parts about dating Johnny is that I feel like we are constantly surprising each other with gifts that are either totally sweet or really silly. From cute coffee mugs and LEGO sets to random Honey Nut Cheerios found throughout my kitchen, where ever I turn in my apartment there seems to be a reminder of our relationship.

This past week, I arrived home with the DVD seen below and the following morning I woke up to a goofy surprise on my laptop:

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Throughout our days of being in lock down from COVID, Johnny and I talk about literally anything and everything. From world affairs to desert island favorites and the merits of Danny Trejo showing up in the most random movies, it’s never all that boring!

In fact, we’ve talked about Danny Trejo a lot so when I saw the TREJO TRIO DVD at the Dollar Tree I wasn’t not going to buy it. Lol, I was so excited to show Johnny my “can’t believe it’s only a dollar” find and we were completely cracking up after the grand reveal.

Obviously, Johnny and I both love to laugh so it was still surprising but no surprise that the following morning, I woke up to a Waffully Good Joke on my laptop. It was such a little, silly thing but it put me in the best mood when I woke up because I knew Johnny was thinking about me while he made his breakfast in the morning.

I love our relationship and our surprises to each other from the romantic and sentimental to the downright hysterical makes me so happy. A dollar DVD and a joke from the LEGGO waffles packaging kept me smiling all day and, sometimes, the simplest things can cause the biggest impact! ❤

What are some silly things that you and your friends or SO talk about? How do you surprise your loved ones? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

The Best Ways To Surprise Yourself

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The Best Ways To Surprise Yourself

Life can get pretty stale sometimes. Most of the time, if we want to be surprised, we have to wait for someone else to do it by arranging a spontaneous trip or giving us a gift. But what if we didn’t wait? What if, when we wanted to be surprised, we did it ourselves? It might not sound possible since being surprised is all about not knowing what’s coming, but we think it can be done, and we think it should be done. Here are some of our ideas:

Join A Subscription Box:

A subscription box is definitely something you can surprise yourself with. You’ll be sent a new box each month, and you’ll never know what’s going to be inside it. So, although you organized the box to be delivered, and although you’re paying for it, it’s still going to be a surprise. At the same time, it’s something you can look forward to, and this is a scarce combination indeed.

The key to enjoying your subscription box is to pick something you know you’re going to love, whatever the box’s actual contents might be. You could choose a Me Time Box or something that delivers food or cooking ingredients. There are boxes of clothes, bath salts, perfumes, and books. There are subscription boxes for pretty much everything, so search around and you’re sure to find one you like.

Write Yourself Notes:

We might think we’ve got good memories, but the human brain doesn’t remember everything. It only keeps the most important things where they can easily be reached through memory, and everything else is stored away much deeper. These things can usually only be triggered by a certain smell, photographs, or perhaps stories from friends and relatives.

This is why writing notes to yourself can be a great surprise. Write some positive notes and leave them in places where you know you’ll find them later on – maybe months down the line. When you find them, it will be a pleasant surprise and something to make you feel good. Some examples of what you can write include:

  • Stay positive
  • You are beautiful
  • You are loved
  • I’m proud of you
  • Keep going

Place the notes into drawers, under cushions, in coat pockets, in books, or even in outside places that you’re going to return to time and again.

Say Yes:

When we are asked to do something or given any kind of opportunity, there are two responses. You’ll either say yes or no. It’s easier to say no. Saying no means that nothing has to change, and we don’t have to try anything new. So most of the time, that’s what we’ll say.

Why not surprise yourself and say yes, instead? This will give you the chance to try all kinds of new things. Some you will dislike, some you will enjoy, and others you might fall in love with, and your life might change (for the better) because of it. Unless you say yes and give yourself a surprise, you’ll never know. Staying in your comfort zone is not surprising and will only cause stress and anxiety over time. At the very least, you’ll be bored!

Say yes to the ideas above and give yourself a surprise today!

Featured Image By: Pixabay

Sweet Surprises: Best Boyfriend Ever Edition

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Sweet Surprises: Best Boyfriend Ever Edition

Hello! So, last Thursday, I had quite possibly one of the worst work days of my life. I can’t go into more detail than that but it was emotionally charged and very sad for me. Despite being so upset, I knew Johnny had kind of a bum week too so I decided to pick him up some fast food from one of his favorite places in the area I was in. I texted him that I had his dinner and not to make anything for himself and he replied back that he actually had a surprise for me, as well.

Naturally, the word “surprise” put a tiny pep back in my step and I was eager to get home to see what Johnny was talking about. When I walked into our apartment, I laughed out loud because I saw this hanging from our rafter:

Originally, I thought the ghostie was the surprise but Johnny told me that it was for him to take to work to decorate his space with. Then, he handed me this adorable sugar skull coffee mug:

I absolutely love being gifted with coffee mugs because it makes me think of whoever gave it to me whenever I use it. I have so many cute mugs from my best friend and the ones that aren’t in my kitchen cabinet house little knick knacks and baubles throughout my apartment. Johnny hit the nail on the head with this pick me up and, somehow, we both knew that each of us would need one that day.

My new coffee mug is deliciously Day Of The Dead and I plan on keeping it out all of the time because it always makes me smile when I see it. My Johnny really is the best boyfriend ever and my day got a whole lot brighter as soon as I got home.

For the rest of the night, we watched The Haunting Of Bly Manor and Seinfeld and laughed every time the ghost decoration spooked me when I saw it in my peripheral. I am so thankful to have him because he turned my awful day into a wonderful evening and all I had to do was open the door to our place. ❤

Has anyone given you a Sweet Surprise recently? How do you unwind after a bad day? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Sweet Surprises: Sister Edition

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Sweet Surprises: Sister Edition

Hello all and welcome to the first post of September 2020 here on lifewithlilred! Today, we are going to discuss a sweet surprise from my big sister, Kristen. My sis is my ultimate BFF and I am proud to be the permanent fourth wheel to her, her boyfriend, and daughter. If I could I would be with them all of the time!

This past week, Kristen told me she had a gift waiting for me at my mom and dad’s and I could hardly wait to get over there for work to see what it was. I had no idea what it could have been and no hints were given to me so I went into the surprise blind… And discovered the following:

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As a “just because” prezzie, Kristen surprised me with this super cool skull and butterfly art by Marmont Hill that she found at TJMaxx. Kristen told me she thought it looked “very me” when she saw it and couldn’t pass it up… She was right! It is very me and if I weren’t almost out of blank space on my body I’d get it tattooed, lol.

Unfortunately, I see Kristen and her family nowhere near as much as I would like and we both want to make an effort to change that. However, we text each other pretty much every day. I am so excited to hang my new art up in my apartment and I am going to get the warm fuzzies every time I see it.

After returning home with my treasured new decor, I was in such a giving spirit that I decided to start my Christmas shopping way early. I have a ton of people to shop for, sue me for it! I just had to spoil my sister’s daughter rotten this year and I can’t wait to do the same for Kristen and her partner. Both are such hard working, loving, dedicated parents and friends and if anyone deserves gifts galore, it is most definitely them. ❤

How do you surprise your loved ones? When do you like to start your holiday shopping? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Sweet Surprises: BFF Edition

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Sweet Surprises: BFF Edition

Hello! My best friend of over twelve years, Lea, is going to be getting married at the end of October and I am one of her bridesmaids! Unfortunately, a pandemic isn’t the best time for a wedding celebration and because of having several high risk clients, I have had to opt out of a lot of the fun. It makes me sad that I can’t participate in good conscious in the different activities but Lea knows where I’m coming from and that’s the only important thing to me.

During our most recent hang out to have an early 26th birthday celebration for Lea (AKA drinks on my parent’s deck), I was expecting for her to be the only one receiving prezzies. But my darling bestie surprised me with the following:

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Lea is honestly one of the sweetest people I have ever met in my life and it is so like her to bring something for me on a day that should be celebrating her. I am so in love with the comfy cozy “Bridesmaid” tee by Bella + Canvas (I’m wearing it right now!) and the customized glass is adorable enough that I don’t even want to drink out of it!

It has been hard being out of the metaphorical wedding loop right now for Lea because safety is my primary concern. So, these gifts were very special to me because it showed that Lea still thinks of me as one of her bridesmaids no matter what.

2020 has been such a crazy year and I am so sad that Lea’s wedding isn’t going to be everything that she dreamed of and then some. But, as her best friend and STILL her bridesmaid even though I hardly deserve a participation trophy, I will be doing everything I can in the meantime to keep her spirits way up high. I know she would do the exact same for me. ❤

Did you have an event that got cancelled this year? How do you stay safe during the pandemic? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah