How to Survive Christmas: 101

Good morning!  How strange to be posting on a Wednesday! We haven’t posted on Wednesdays for a while now but here we go! Remember to head over to the original 12 Days of Christmas post here to look at all the other hosts and their ideas, to print out calendars and to enter the giveaway! Also, there is an inlinkz at the bottom of the post where you can add your ideas of how to survive the holidays!

Welcome to the 5th annual 12 Days of Holiday Ideas event, hosted by Shirley of Intelligent Domestications  and  Erlene of My Pinterventures Between Nov. 11th and December 6th there will be hundreds of new ideas shared by over 55 Co-host bloggers! 

Go here to see our kick-off collection of Holiday ideas as well as all of this years talented participating DIY and Foodie Blogs. Download this years November and December calendars with all of the topics and dates so you can make plans to watch for ideas!

We are hosting a BIG GIVEAWAY from our Sponsors this year! Be sure to scroll all the way down for more information and to enter to win!

We are continuing on with our 12 Days of Christmas Blog Hop.  This is day 2 of 12 and we are talking about the best tips on Surviving Christmas!  Christmas is one of the busiest and most stressful times of the year and this year will be no different.  While everyone is trying to complete their Christmas list (for themselves and shopping for others), here is a short list of things you can do to make your Christmas go smoothly.

Order All of Your Gifts Early and Keep a Checklist

checklist

I think this is probably the biggest thing to help keep you sanity during Christmas.  I like to write down everything that I want to get for people and mark it off when I have received the item.  So for my checklist this year, I wrote down my sister, my mom, my dad, my Secret Santa for work, and my cats (you can’t forget them).  Under each person I put what I am planning on getting them and put a check mark next to it when I have purchased the item.  If you have a price limit for the gift, I like to write the price next to their name so I don’t overspend.  And don’t forget to order way ahead of time!  If you are planning on getting gifts from websites like Amazon, make sure you order them early so they have time to arrive.  You would hate to order a very important Christmas gift a week before Christmas and it not arrive on time!

Set Up a Time to Wrap All of the Presents

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This is something that my mom does every year.  Once she has collected all of the gifts, she finds a day where she isn’t doing too much and wraps ALL of them.  When my sister and I lived at home, mom would lock herself in her bedroom to wrap all of the presents.  But make sure you have all of the things you would need to wrap.  Paper, tape, ribbon, scissors, tags, boxes, bags, and tissue paper.  Make sure you have all of your stuff so you don’t have to keep leaving the room.   Make sure you have some water and a possible snack and some good music to listen to!

Make a Checklist of Christmas Activities You Want to Do

More checklists!  Personally, I love making checklists or to do lists so this is definitely something I do.  Your checklist can be as big or small as you would like.  You can add things like visit a nativity, bake cookies, watch a Christmas movie, go caroling, and many many more.  You can add as many or as few things as you would like to your list.  This year, my Christmas list actually looks like a Christmas tree coloring page.  All of the things I want to are ornaments on the tree and I get to color one in when I’ve completed it.  And guess what?  You can use it too!  I placed it below so you can print out your own Christmas Tree Checklist!

Christmas To Do Coloring Page (1)

Christmas To Do Coloring Page

Pick One or Two Days to Stay Home

With all of the craziness of the Christmas season, it is easy to get stressed out from going places and doing things.  Take some time for yourself and stay home.  Plan a day to stay home and bake Christmas cookies, watch Christmas movies, read Christmas stories, stay in Christmas pajamas all day, drink hot cocoa, among other things.  You don’t always have to be crazy busy.  Make sure you take time for yourself and relax for a day.

If You are Hosting, Enlist Help

help wanted

During the crazy Christmas season we are always attending parties.  If it’s just hosting Christmas at your house or hosting a Christmas Cookie Exchange, it can still take a lot of work.  And it’s tiring to do it all yourself.  Don’t forget to enlist the help of others to prepare for your party.  Have your family help you clean (even if that means getting the kids to just tidy up their toys), ask some friends or family who are attending if they would be willing to help you prep, and asking others to help supply food.  For our families Christmas, we separate the food duties out between all of the families attending.  It makes life just a little easier when it comes to the actual day of the party.  That it one less thing you have to worry about the day of the party.  It makes the day less stressful and the party easier to enjoy!

Buy Wrapping Paper WAY Ahead of Time

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Something my mom and I do is we actually buy wrapping paper AFTER Christmas.  This is the perfect time get huge discounts on wrapping paper and other supplies for your Christmas presents.  Ribbon, bows, paper, boxes, bags, you name it you can get it discounted.  Now, I know it’s too late now, but I highly recommend buying your wrapping paper sooner rather than later.  The sooner that you have your wrapping paper, the sooner you will feel less stressed.

And that’s it!  These are just a couple ideas on how you survive the Christmas holiday season.  There are more things you can do to help make the season less stressful.  But these are my top things to help keep my sanity.  So I hope you enjoy and let me know if you are going to try any of these this season!

Here’s the inlinkz! See what the other ideas there are for surviving the holidays!

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Sparkle

MEET OUR SPONSORS who have generously donated fabulous prizes for the Big Christmas Giveaway!

DecoArt  winner will receive a prize package valued at $100!

Dixie Crystals/Imperial Sugar winner will receive a Keurig Coffee Maker valued at $100!

Oriental Trading winner will receive an OrientalTrading.com gift card valued at $200!

Cabot Cheese winner will receive a gift basket of Cabot products valued at $75!

Burlap Fabric winner will receive a prize pack of products valued at $50!

Zulay Kitchens winner will receive one Milk Frother and a Lemon Squeezer valued at $21

It’s Home To You winner will receive one wooden Santa sign valued at $65

12 Days of Holiday Ideas Event Sponsors 2019

Giveaway begins Nov. 8, 2019 and ends Dec. 6, 2019. Winners will be notified by December 13, 2019. Sponsors will ship each prize to the winner. There will be a total of seven winners, one for each prize. Drawing is by random selection using the Rafflecopter widget. 

Must be 18 to win. Open to U.S. residents only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Christmas Gift Guide Round Up

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Good morning!  Welcome to the beginning of a 4 week blog journey that we are embarking on!  We are a part of the 12 Days of Holiday Blog Hop where 50 bloggers are coming together to give you amazing Christmas ideas and some beautiful inspiration for your 2019 Christmas season.  If you want to visit the other blog posts, click here and it will take you to the main blog post where you can visit everyone else’s blog posts!

This is the 5th annual 12 Days of Holiday Ideas event, hosted by Shirley of Intelligent Domestications  and  Erlene of My Pinterventures.  Between Nov. 11th and December 6th there will be hundreds of new ideas shared by over 55 Co-host bloggers! 

Go here  to see our kick-off collection of Holiday ideas as well as all of this years talented participating DIY and Foodie Blogs. Download this years November and December calendars with all of the topics and dates so you can make plans to watch for ideas!

The other fun thing is that there is a link-up at the end of each of the posts where you can link-up your own great ideas! I can’t wait to see what everyone comes up with! I still need a few ideas for gifts for some hard to buy for people!

So to start off the 12 days, we start with a Gift Guide Round-up.  Now, I know there are a lot of different kinds of people you have to give gifts to so I will have a couple different gifts for each of the following groups of people: Gardener, Techie, Animal Lover, Baker, and Decorator.  So read along, take some notes, and see what you think!

Also, all of these will be linked to Amazon.  If you click on the link, it will take you to the product where you can purchase it.  And for each purchase, we will get a small portion of it back to us with no extra cost to you.  So enjoy!

The Gardener

The first thing I want to share is the awesome gardening set.  This set come with 20 different pieces including tools, gloves, identification tags, a spray bottle, and a tool organizer.  All of these are super nifty for if you have either a large vegetable garden or a small succulent garden.  All in all, this would be awesome for anyone who has a garden!


AOKIWO 11 Garden Tools Set Heavy Duty Aluminum Manual Garden kit, 20 Pieces, Green

The second item is this super cool 4 Tier Mini Green House.  I would love to have this for my apartment because it would add so much space for my succulents.  This is the perfect gift for someone who enjoys gardening but doesn’t have that much space.  The racks are removable which means you can put larger plants on the shelves as well.



4 Tier Mini Greenhouse with PE Cover and Roll-Up Zipper Door, Waterproof Cloche Portable Greenhouse Tent-27.25″ L X 19″ W x 63″ H, Grow Seeds & Seedlings, Tend Potted Plants (1pcs)

Techie

I have decided that this first item is on my Christmas list.  This backpack not only features a ton of pockets (because who doesn’t like pockets), but it also features a lock, a headphone jack, and a phone charging cable port.  This backpack can fit a laptop and a ton of other items.  And, it even has a strap that can attach to your suitcase handle so everything is easy to carry around.  How cool is this single backpack?!


Bertasche Business Laptop Backpack 17-17.3 Inch w/USB Charging Port Water-Resistant Canvas Backpack for Work College School Travel

The second thing I have included is a Ring Doorbell.  Now, I know that the Ring isn’t a new item but it is something that every techie would love to have.  I know my parents love having their Ring so they can see who is at their door.  But these are amazing to have at your door to make sure that nothing bad is happening at your door.  Safety is always important, don’t you think!

Ring Video Doorbell with HD Video, Motion Activated Alerts, Easy Installation – Satin Nickel

Animal Lover

We are animal lovers around here and I can confirm that it can be difficult to find something cute to give for Christmas.  So I am here to rescue you!  The first item I found are these adorable kitchen towels.  Now, they come in multiple different designs so you can pick towels for cat or dog lovers.  Some are black and white while others have color on them.  They are the perfect for someone who loves their pet!

                         

DII 100% Cotton, Everyday Basic Home Kitchen, Ultra-Absorbent, Drying, Cleaning, Pet Lover, Printed Dish Towels, 18 x 28, Set of 3-Dog, Dishtowel, (3)

The second item I wanted to show off was this adorable rose gold heart necklace.  The necklace features two small pendants, one rose gold heart and one silver paw print.  This is such a small dainty piece of jewelry that anyone would love.  It would be such a sweet gift for someone who loves their pets!

Heart Paw Print Necklace – Rose Gold Plated Silver – Dog Lover Gift, Dog Paw Jewelry

Baker

I really enjoy baking and I have gotten a lot of baking things from friends and family, but there can never be enough baking items.  So here is a group of 214 (!) baking items that would be perfect for any baker!  You get pans, spatulas, piping tips, decorating tools, and much much more.  This is not only perfect for a seasoned baker, but it’s also great for someone who is just starting off and needs a lot of supplies.  And, it’s not crazy expensive either!  How fun would this be to wrap and watch someone open?!

Cake Decorating Supplies,214 PCS Baking Set with Springform Cake Pans Set, Cake Rotating Turntable, Cake Decorating Kits, Muffin Cup Molds, Perfect Cake Baking Supplies for Beginners and Cake Lovers

What baker doesn’t need a cute apron to bake in?  Now, I’m not saying this is the only apron you should buy, but this one is adorable with the little cupcakes all over it.  HOW CUTE IS THAT!!  You don’t have to pick the cupcake apron, you can pick others that are cute, but this one is just an idea.  Who knows what you could find!

KAF Home Adult’s Hostess Extra Long Ties – Adjustable Bib Cupcake Apron-Machine Wash-Used in Kitchen, Gardening

Decorator

The first item I want to show off is this soft and fuzzy pompom edged throw blanket.  This blanket comes in multiple different colors and is super cute.  I LOVE the mustard yellow color, but it does come in some neutral colors which is great for any kind of decorator.  This is something that I would buy for myself and for my mom (yes there is a pink and a blue version of the blanket).

LOMAO Flannel Blanket with Pompom Fringe Lightweight Cozy Bed Blanket Soft Throw Blanket fit Couch Sofa Suitable for All Season (51×63) (Mustard Yellow)

Who doesn’t like a nice fuzzy pillow?  Though it can be inconvenient to store 100 regular pillows, it isn’t as inconvenient to store 100 pillow covers!  And these soft and fuzzy pillow covers would be perfect to add to your pillow cover collection.  They come in a couple different colors, but there are hundreds of options of pillow covers on Amazon.  The possibilities are endless!

Uhomy 2 Packs Home Decorative Luxury Series Super Soft Faux Fur Throw Pillow Cover Cushion Case for Sofa or Bed Gray Ombre 18×18 Inch 45×45 cm

There are so many ideas for gifts for everyone in your family!  I hope this is helpful for you and your Christmas list.  I hope that this blog post has helped you decide what to get for friends and family for Christmas!  Thanks for stopping by and be sure to come back in a couple days to see what else we have to share! Remember you can print out the calendars here so you know what’s coming up!

Here is also the link-up so you can share your own ideas too! I am excited to see what great gift ideas you have!

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

We have a BIG GIVEAWAY from our Sponsors this year! Fill out the rafflecopter for some great prizes! 

No photo description available.

Giveaway begins Nov. 8, 2019 and ends Dec. 6, 2019. Winners will be notified by December 13, 2019. Sponsors will ship each prize to the winner. There will be a total of six winners, one for each prize. Drawing is by random selection using the Rafflecopter widget. 

Must be 18 to win. Open to U.S. residents only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

amazon affiliate

Sparkle

50 DIY Holiday Ideas For You!

Good morning! Lauren and I are so excited to join the 12 Days of Holiday Ideas Blog Hop! This is our first year joining in and we have been very busy! Do you need some holiday ideas? There are ideas for decorating, crafting, cooking, games, baking and the grand finale will be our Christmas Trees! We are hosting a BIG GIVEAWAY from our Sponsors this year! Be sure to scroll all the way down for more information and to enter to win!

It’s the fifth year of the Holiday Ideas Blog Hop! If you aren’t familiar with this annual blog hop, it’s a 4 week event where 50+ bloggers share Christmas ideas 3x a week. Scroll down to meet this year’s Holiday Ideas Team and grab the free printable event calendars! The official Holiday Ideas Blog Hop starts Monday, November 11, with all sorts of Gift Guides! In the mean time, enjoy this round-up of the Best DIY Holiday Ideas from this year’s hosts and get started on your DIY holiday projects!

Holiday Ideas Blog Hop Kickoff

Intelligent Domestications  ~  My Pinterventures  ~  Chicken Scratch That Fit Fam
An Alli Event Domestically Creative  ~  Rosewood and Grace  ~
From House To Home  ~  Happily Ever After, Etc Across the Blvd  ~  Farm Girl Reformed
Creative Cynchronicity  ~  Country Hill Cottage  ~  My Humble Home and Garden
 PolkaDot Poplars  ~  Family Around the Table  ~  Domestic Deadline
Purple Hues and Me  ~  Glitter On A Dime  ~  Sparkle Living ~ Crafting Is My Therapy

As For Me and My Homestead  ~  Cookies, Coffee and Crafts  ~  The Aspiring Home
Practically Homemade  ~  The Fresh Cooky  ~  Simply Inspired Meals 
Love My Little Cottage  ~  Mom Home Guide   ~  Blogghetti
Nourish and Nestle  ~  My Family Thyme  ~  Simple Nature Decor
Interior Frugalista  ~  Elle Marie Home  ~  DIY Adulation  ~  Through My Front Porch
Weekend Craft Our Crafty Mom  ~  For the Love of Food  ~  Tikkido
Home on the Corner  ~  Adventures of a DIY Mom  ~  My Hubbard Home  ~  Hello Central Avenue
Harbour Breeze Home This Autoimmune Life  ~  Creative Ramblings
Radiant Pearl Living  ~  Super Mom – No Cape  ~  Little Vintage Cottage  ~  Christmas Tree Lane

Get the FREE November and December Holiday Ideas Blog Hop Calendar at the end of the post.

50+ Best DIY Holiday Ideas

Holiday Decor Projects

Holiday Signs

Best DIY Holiday Ideas - Rustic signs 1

Best DIY Holiday Ideas Signs 2

Misc. Holiday Decor

Best DIY Holiday Ideas Decor 1

Best DIY Holiday Ideas Decor 2

Holiday Wreaths & A Tree

Best DIY Holiday Ideas Wreaths

Best DIY Holiday Ideas - Wreaths 2

Best DIY Holiday Ideas Wreath 3

Crafts

Best DIY Holiday Ideas Crafts 1

Best DIY Holiday Ideas Crafts - Wood Christmas Tree Signs and rustic luminaries

Ornaments & Tree

Best DIY Holiday Ideas Ornaments 1

Best DIY Holiday Ideas Ornaments 2

Best DIY Holiday Ideas Ornaments 3

Best DIY Holiday Ideas Ornaments 4

Games

Best DIY Holiday Ideas Games

Gift Ideas

Best DIY Holiday Ideas Gifts 1

Best DIY Holiday Ideas Gifts 2

Recipes

Best DIY Holiday Ideas Recipes 1

Best DIY Holiday Ideas Cookies

Best DIY Holiday Ideas Recipes 3

Hope you enjoyed these holiday ideas. Remember to check back on November 11 for Gift Guides!

Printable Holiday Ideas Blog Hop Events Calendar

Print these Holiday Ideas Blog Hop Calendars and stick them on your fridge! It’s a great way to have all the holiday topics and post dates!

Just click on the image to view and print out the November and December Holiday Ideas Blog Hop Event Calendars.

November Holiday Ideas Blog Hop Calendar

December Holiday Ideas Blog Hop Calendar

 MEET OUR SPONSORS who have generously donated fabulous prizes for the Big Christmas Giveaway!

DecoArt  winner will receive a prize package valued at $100!

Dixie Crystals/Imperial Sugar winner will receive a Keurig Coffee Maker valued at $100!

Oriental Trading winner will receive an OrientalTrading.com gift card valued at $200!

Cabot Cheese winner will receive a gift basket of Cabot products valued at $75!

Burlap Fabric winner will receive a prize pack of products valued at $50!

Zulay Kitchens winner will receive one Milk Frother and a Lemon Squeezer valued at $21

It’s Home To You winner will receive one wooden Santa sign valued at $65

12 Days of Holiday Ideas Event Sponsors 2019

 

Giveaway begins Nov. 8, 2019 and ends Dec. 6, 2019. Winners will be notified by December 13, 2019. Sponsors will ship each prize to the winner. There will be a total of seven winners, one for each prize. Drawing is by random selection using the Rafflecopter widget. 

Must be 18 to win. Open to U.S. residents only. Terms and Conditions.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I hope you are all as excited as we are! I can’t wait to see all the different ideas these talented ladies come up with! See you on Monday!

sunshine-and-blessings-picmonkey  sparkle

Day of the Dead Ofrenda

Good morning! Can you believe we are already in November? Some of the days kind of drag by, but the month is gone before I know it! I have some exciting news for you! Lauren and I have joined in with 50 other bloggers with some great Christmas ideas and the series will start this Friday!! I can’t wait to see what ideas everyone has come up with. There is sure to be something for everyone! So come back on Friday for the kick-off!

Did you decorate or go trick-or-treating for Halloween? I don’t usually do too much decorating, just a few pumpkins, but this year Lauren helped me set up an Ofrenda, similar to the one from the Disney movie Coco.

We have a 99 Cent Store in our town and we found so much Day of the Dead stuff there! Now, ours is not as elaborate as Disney’s (!), but I think it turned out pretty good!

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I don’t know much about this celebration, but the little bit I have learned is so interesting. I think the whole idea behind it is so cool. Remembering our relatives and our past is so important to who we are. I hope to learn more each year.

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I found pictures of the Coco characters online and printed them out to place on our Ofrenda.

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I love the little spirit animal! A dog, of course!

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Lots of candles and flowers fill it all in.

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I love the designs on the jar candles! So perfect!

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Do you recognize any of the characters! Mama Coco is at the bottom of the picture.

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Does your family set up an Ofrenda? I would love to know about it! Thank you so much for stopping by today! Remember, on Friday, starts Christmas!!

sunshine-and-blessings-picmonkey

Home on the Corner Halloween!

Good morning!  I hope everyone had a wonderful and safe Halloween yesterday.  Even though I had to work all day, I was still able to have a little bit of fun and dress up.  I wore a pair of Minnie Mouse ears to work but that was it.  Nothing too exciting.

But I did have an actual costume that I wore just because.  I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to do for Halloween and then I had the random (yes it was completely random) thought of dressing up like Molly McIntire from the American Girl series.  Molly was the only doll that looked like me (except for the glasses) and I had the doll and a lot of her things when I was growing up.

So here is my outfit with my Molly doll.

Molly dress up

I am very happy with how my outfit turned out!  I was able to find everything relatively easy with the exception of my skirt, which I ended up sewing myself.  And thanks to my friend Elise who went out on a random photoshoot adventure with me to get this adorable photo.

Mom dressed up as well.  For her job, all of the teachers dressed up as different story book characters.  And she dressed up as Bo Peep from Toy Story!

Bo Peep Dress Up

She even has a little lamb and everything!  I have to say that my mom got very creative with her outfit.  She used a candy cane for her staff and fashioned her own ruffles for the bloomers.  She also made her cute bow headband!  I think it looks so cute and perfect for a story book character.

And of course the dogs had to dress up!  Do you remember their costume from two years ago?  If not, you should click here because it was cute!  So of course, the dogs have to outdo their costumes from before and my mom and I were on the hunt for their outfits!

Sea Creature Dress Up

In this photo we have Rozy Blu the turtle, Ezzy the shark, Zoella aka Munch the lobster, and Maggie the mermaid.  Aren’t they the cutest?!  They even have their own background and props for the photo.  This took a lot of treats, sweat, and convincing everyone to look at the camera to get this photo.  But some of the outtakes are even cuter!

And that’s it!  This is how we all celebrated Halloween at our house.  I hope you enjoyed our little update post and enjoy the rest of your day!

Sparkle