Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas from my family to yours! I’ll be taking Christmas Eve and Christmas day off of posting to spend time with my kids, but I’ll be back on Wednesday with my regularly scheduled Publix trip. Have a blessed holiday!

How to Cut Back On Holiday Spending

How to Cut Back On Holiday Spending

Year after year, we find ourselves experiencing the usual holiday dilemma. December has the same number of paychecks as every other month on the calendar, and yet, we’re expected to buy gifts for everyone we know, tip every person who helps us throughout the year, purchase extra food, decorations and special attire for holiday parties, and finance travel plans! Unless you’re the rare person who sets aside money throughout the year specifically meant to handle holiday expenses, you probably need to reign in spending in order to prevent credit card debt. Here are a few ideas on how to cut back on your holiday spending this year.

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Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas from my family to yours! I’ll be taking Christmas Eve and Christmas day off of posting to spend time with my kids, but I’ll be back on Wednesday with my regularly scheduled Publix trip. Have a blessed holiday!

Shopping for Christmas Ornaments at Hallmark

Shopping for Christmas Ornaments at Hallmark

Every year since the kids were babies we’ve made it a tradition to pick out one special Christmas ornament or decoration each year. When the holiday season rolls around we get together as a family and decorate the tree and the house and we enjoy bringing out each of the previous years’ picks and the memories that they bring back. This year I took my two girls with me to our favorite Hallmark Gold Crown store at the mall and had a girls day out.

The girls and I found lots of beautiful ornaments and Christmas decorations at Hallmark but they were especially drawn to these Peanuts Gang Christmas Light Show figures. I didn’t realize until this super helpful salesperson explained to us that the five figures connect wirelessly to perform a synchronized light show. The girls both agreed that we should start with the Woodstock Christmas tree figure and come back for Snoopy when he’s available on November 27th.

Shopping for Christmas Ornaments at Hallmark

Both girls also insisted that we get something for each of the three brothers while we were there and they just fell in love with the Itty Bittys so they picked out Lucy, R2D2, Batman and Darth Vader.  Although I had to get my girls out the store before they decided that we needed one of everything, I’m planning to head back to Hallmark soon to pick up some Christmas cards. From November 21st through 29th they’re having the Thanksgiving Tote Event where you can get 20% off everything you can fit inside a specially priced $9.95 tote so that’s when I’ll be making my next trip.

Merry Christmas!

Hoyle Kids Christmas 2012

Merry Christmas from my family to yours! I’ll be taking Christmas Eve and Christmas day off of posting to spend time with my kids, but I’ll be back on Wednesday with my regularly scheduled Publix trip. Have a blessed holiday!

Personalized Gifts Are Timeless

giftsforyounow

As wonderful as the holiday season is, it can also be a stressful time. One source of stress could be the uncertainty of what gifts to buy for those on your holiday gift list. A few other trying moments might arise as you strive to create a holiday home decor that is as exquisite as those you see on display or one that is unique to your design style. One way to ease some of your holiday stress comes from a tradition that started many years ago. It’s origin is explained in numerous ways, but regardless of how the tradition of hanging stockings at Christmas began, it’s a tradition that continues to delight children and adults today.

Your family on display

Each person in your family has a unique personality. The display of stockings you hang during the holidays can be a visual example of those personalities. Not only can you hang stockings that have been personalized with each person’s name, you can hang stocking that directly relate to each person’s personality. From whimsical to elegant and from camo to purple velvet, there’s a stocking that complements all personalities. Your holiday stocking display can be somewhat like a family portrait when you hang individualized stockings. You’ll want to be sure to include pet theme stockings for the furry ones in your household.

Great gifts

Personalized gifts tend to become treasured keepsakes. You can eliminate a lot of your gift selection stress when you browse through the stocking designs at a site such as http://www.giftsforyounow.com/personalized-christmas-stockings 559.aspx. Matching a stocking design to a someone’s personality and having their name put on it is a thoughtful gift that is sure to reappear each year when the holiday decorations are unpacked. Long after the surprises that are placed in the stocking have been eaten or used, the stocking itself will continue to be a treasured part of each holiday season.

Decor

You can select stockings that are traditional or ones that are far beyond traditional in design to add to your holiday decor. Adding your personal touch to them makes them a more treasured part of your holiday decorations.

Decorating your home with stockings that are a display of each person’s individuality can make everyone feel special. The holidays are all about family, friends and special moments. A personalized gift can be a tangible memento that preserves those special moments.

Great Home Theater Gifts from Best Buy

Disclosure – This is a sponsored post and I have been compensated in the form of a Best Buy Gift Card, however all thoughts and opinions are my own.

Home Theater at Best Buy

I’m already in full Christmas gift shopping mode – with five kids and a large extended family on a not so large budget I have to do lots of planning and I can’t wait until the last minute to do my shopping or I’ll inadvertently leave someone out or end up breaking the budget. One of the things that makes my gift list a little easier to handle is knowing in advance where I can get the best deals on the best products, narrowing the shopping down to just a few places takes a lot of stress out of the season for me. Another great strategy is to have a plan in place for how much I can spend on each person and when it comes to the kids, who expect to get more than a gift or two, how to divide up their portion of the gift budget.

Santa Claus still brings the kids gifts and he brings me gifts too because I wouldn’t want the kids to think I’d been bad during the year, but I always make sure the best gifts come from mommy. I also like to get at least one “household” gift, something big for the whole family to share. A few months ago a lightning strike took out our living room television so I’m thinking this year’s “big” family gift is going to be a new TV and boy do they have some great choices at Best Buy!

Home Theater at Best Buy

I am really impressed with LG’s  new technology, the LG OLED TV, featuring picture quality including  Infinite contrast ratio. Check out this stunning color that gives a greater sense of realism and depth. Plus the TV has a super thin design at only 0.21″ thick at its thinnest point and the intuitive webOS™Smart TV interface that lets you find content faster. The LG OLED TV retails for $3,999.99 but you can save $500 with Best Buy’s everyday low price of $3,499.99 so I’m definitely thinking “Santa” will be bringing us one this year!

 

Get Your Holiday Card on the #TopoftheMantel with Cardstore!

Disclosure – I participated in an Ambassador Program on behalf of Mom Central Consulting (#MC) for Cardstore. I received complimentary cards and a promotional item as a thank you for participating.”

Christmas Card 2013

A couple weeks ago I told you guys how I always like to be one of the first to get my Christmas cards sent out and how I really dropped the ball this year. Well Cardstore.com helped me get these holiday cards out at the last minute with no muss and no fuss and I’m thrilled to be hearing how much people have liked receiving them!

It seems like there is always some sort of friendly rivalry around the holiday season, for example there is lots of whispering and secret planning going on at the office right now surrounding everyone’s Dirty Santa gifts for our office party next week. For me, I have greatly enjoyed hearing about how much people near and far love watching my kids grow up through our annual family Christmas card. This year I’m proud to have turned to Cardstore to help our cards get to the top of the mantel!

You still have time to get to the top of the mantel too and Cardstore can help you do it without the hassle. Their wonderful service helps you to easily create your own custom cards for any occasion with personalized pictures, messages and even your own signature. Plus they even print, stamp and mail them for you so you can mark this big project off your to do list in just a few minutes.

There are so many designs to choose from and you can personalize them any way you’d like. I had a lot of fun browsing through the designs and getting ideas for my cards and I’m sure you’ll find something that you love there too.

Smart Holiday Shopping For Tech & Toys at Best Buy!

Disclosure – The reviewer has been compensated in the form of a Best Buy Gift Card and/or received the product/service at a reduced price or for free.

Merry Christmas from Best Buy

I absolutely love to shop at Best Buy because I know that if I have questions their knowledgeable staff will be able to help me, they have great protection plans, and a wonderful return policy not to mention a huge variety of products. Their low price guarantee means that you’ll get the most competitive price possible too. I’ve already started my holiday shopping at Best Buy, I ordered a new 3-D Blu-Ray player on Monday and it arrived today (don’t tell the kids!), now I just need a 3-D TV to go with it although it will work just fine with our regular old DVDs. Technology is changing so quickly, I’m super excited that this new player will allow us to download movies and music from the Internet and the kids are going to be thrilled.

In addition to the wide variety of technology and appliance products, you can find movies, music, games, cameras, cell phones, accessories, fitness products and tech toys for the kids plus over 100 products that are only available at Best Buy this holiday season.

My girls would go crazy for this Barbie Digital Makeover Kit and I sure with they had this Fisher Price Little People Apptivity Barnyard when my kids were a little smaller. My mom would love to have a FitBit tracker, I have one that I’ve worn daily for a year and I greatly enjoy being able to track my steps, sleep and other activities. Of course the new Misfit Shine tracks all that stuff too and is beautifully designed.

Some other hot gift ideas this year include wireless headphones, the Jawbone Up, and portable speakers. I’m thinking about getting these Logitech speakers for the kids. If you’ve got your eye on any of these things then you’ll want to take advantage of the super promotions going on at Best Buy from December 1st through January 18th like their 15% off health and fitness, Fisher Price and Mattel deal (use promo code bloggers15off at checkout), or take 10% off headphones and portable speakers (use promo code bloggers10off at checkout). There is something for everyone on your gift list!

 

Holiday Cards Made Easy with Help from Cardstore!

Disclosure – I participated in an Ambassador Program on behalf of Mom Central Consulting (#MC) for Cardstore. I received complimentary cards and a promotional item as a thank you for participating.”

Christmas Card 2013

I’ve always been one of those people that has my Christmas cards ordered in advance, addressed and all ready to mail out the day after Thanksgiving. Unfortunately this year the time has really slipped away from me. We moved to a new town this summer and I started a new job in September and only this week thought about getting some pictures of the kids for the cards.

I just went to Cardstore.com and picked this “homemade” style from the many templates they have available, uploaded my favorite holiday picture of the kids and designed some beautiful cards in just a couple of minutes. You can personalize the cards with your own pictures, message and even add your own signature. I’m so proud that I was able to get it done quickly and the best part is that they’re actually mailing them out for me and I can pick the mailing date. That means I don’t have to worry about getting them ready and in the mailbox and they’ll even be sent out the day after Thanksgiving just like I wanted. Whew – crisis averted!

This year I’m only getting Thanksgiving day off of work and I have tons of cooking to do. I’m already shopping for all the necessary ingredients and trying to plan how to get everything done in the little bit of time I’ll have off. While I’m super excited about our first Thanksgiving in the new house, I’m really going to be pressed for time and I’m SO grateful to have been able to cross the Christmas cards off my list in just a few minutes.

From now through November 20th Cardstore is offering $20 off your $50 order, and from 11/21-11/26 Cardstore is offering 30% off holiday cards! There are so many designs to choose from and you can personalize them any way you’d like. I had a lot of fun browsing through the designs and getting ideas for my cards and I’m sure you’ll find something that you love there too.