A few months after my first baby was born I thought I needed a change and proceeded to chop 15 inches off my hair length. FIFTEEN INCHES. That’s like mid-life crisis level action there, CODE RED! It took me close to three years to grow back out and I swore I’d never make a drastic chop like that again. So here I am, 6 years, two more babies, and a mess of hair later. There are many many days where I feel like chopping it off again for the simple purpose of making my life easier because this much hair takes a generous amount of time to style, and mama ain’t got a ton of that to spare. But then I remember the growing out process and that chop chop urge goes right out the window.
To compensate, I look for any way I can to simplify my hair routine. I rely heavily on dry shampoo to get me through the days I don’t wash my hair for the simple reason that it can take me close to a half an hour to dry my hair on the days I do wash it. 30 minutes with a blow dryer is … >> find out more...
When my husband and I were newlyweds, we started acquiring Christmas books, children’s books, mostly. We add a new one to the stash each year or so, and when the tree trimmings come out of storage, so do the books! I’ve read that some families wrap their Christmas books in festive paper and open one each night in December leading up to Christmas, but we prefer to put our collection out in a basket so all the books can be enjoyed all month long by the whole family. Less tape that way.
The classics are all there of course–the Grinch, the Polar Express and ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas–but I’d love to share some of our other favorites with you today, in no particular order, for kids from one to ninety-two.
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
We have 3 versions of this book, actually, because it’s that dear to my husband and my little boys. We’ve shared the original and the children’s version with them with equal success. It’s definitely worth an annual read. Note: my kids also love the old radio dramatization featuring Lionel Barrymore.
Christmas Day in the Morning by Pearl S. Buck
This story is simple … >> find out more...
Let’s be honest, binge watching all my favorite holiday movies is pretty much the best tradition ever. A tradition that requires zero effort other then plopping down on the couch, or my bed if I please, tuning up ye olde dvd player and settling in for the night. I am all about the minimal effort when it comes to the holidays and I’d be lying if I said I hadn’t participated in this tradition several times already. Some people hit the mall this time of year, some people hit the couch. I’m team couch, the mall is way too crowded.
‘Tis the season.
So, you know, because I love you I think it’s time we talk about my top 5 favorite holiday flicks. I’m hoping you’ve seen most, if not all, of these so that we have that much in common. If not, add them to your list and return so we can discuss. Movie time!
*image via Movie Gazette
White Christmas – Danny Kaye, Bing Crosby, Rosemary freakin’ Clooney, and of course… Vera-Ellen’s legs. It’s just my favorite. I sing all the songs and wish I could dance all the dances, and of course I cry when they … >> find out more...
This is a sponsored conversation on behalf of Olay. Photo credit: family selfie taken by me on a frozen lake in Spokane, Washington
Did you know that Photobucket isn’t just a resource for finding stock images anymore? It’s true, Photobucket is also a super easy hub for making any and all things photo product related. You want gorgeous holiday cards? They got holiday cards. You want a slideshow? Photobucket has super easy to build slideshows. Remember how I shared some tips for how to get beautiful for holiday photos? I used some of the photos from that post and easily pulled together a super rad slideshow featuring some of my favorite photos from 2014. Turns out, even though our year was less than amazing, there were still some pretty good moments. It took me less than 5 minutes to upload the photos and toss them all together in a slideshow to help me remember those good moments, and then with their handy sharing tools, I shared that slideshow on Facebook in a snap! Easy peasy lemon squeezy.
Such a fun feature, especially if you’re looking for a low-key alternative to traditional holiday cards or even if you just … >> find out more...
Who else doesn’t have all of their shopping done for the holidays? I hope I’m not the only one! Don’t despair! Last minute gifts aren’t that hard to come by.
Moms do a lot right? I think they deserve the best when it comes to Christmas presents. Let’s give the moms (and other important gals) in our lives the greatest Christmas ever with these awesome gifts under $50. I’m not going to lie, I would want any (or all!) of these! Word on the street is that most of our staff would, also. Kids- are you paying attention.
7. I think any mom would love to … >> find out more...
Christmas is one of my favorite holidays of the year. Isn’t it the greatest? The warm feeling of friends and family everywhere, plans of spending time in front of the fire with my favorite books or a 5,000 piece puzzle and even a cup or two of ridiculously rich eggnog. And I didn’t even get to the presents. Not that they count, or anything materialistic like that.
Not to be cliché, but it really is the most wonderful time of the year.
I’m lucky to live in a state where, more often than not, Christmas is a snowy wonderland. I might grumble about it for the rest of the Winter season, but around the holidays there just isn’t anything better than a snowy front yard on Christmas morning.
Like all good holidays, the smells are what trigger memories of Christmases past for me. The Christmases of my childhood and even the smells of new traditions created with my own little family. They all blend in a happy place in my mind, delicious smells and warm thoughts mixed simmering together. In fact, I have a handful of my favorite smells during the Christmas season, ones I count on as part of … >> find out more...
I finally gave into my urgings a few days ago and downloaded her new, 1989, album and it’s been looping on repeat since. Taylor Swift 1989. IT’S THAT GOOD, ear worm type stuff. So what, I’m a 30-something wife and mother with decidedly more mature tastes than that of an early (and I do mean early) 20’s country-to-pop-crossover star. But I love her, I do.
Taylor Swift, I couldn’t quit you if I tried.
Don’t judge me, it just feels right.
I’m guessing if you haven’t admitted it already, you probably love her too and that’s okay. This is a safe space. A safe, Taylor Swift friendly place.
Now back to our regularly scheduled programming.
… >> find out more...
If you are in need of a snappy mantra for holiday cheer to get you through the season, stick around. Friends, please meet Kalli Verbecky. She’s visited us before, is generally fabulous, and today has shared a refreshing perspective and gentle reality check, to which I say amen.
IT’S ALMOST FREAKING CHRISTMAS
I mean, duh, right?
You have your advent calendar out, your halls are decked to the max, and cookies and treats, and zoo lights, and making gingerbread houses, and trimming your tree, and an elf on a shelf and hot cocoa for all! Because that is what celebrating the holidays in 2014 means I guess. This level of festive commitment is what your kids are counting on because you ARE the source of friggin’ holiday magic! So get with the program and try not to ruin their childhoods with a lackluster December showing. You don’t want to spend the rest of the year in a shame cycle now do you?
Let’s dial that back for a minute with a short vignette: last December I had a bit of a wake-up call. Let me preface this by saying I love the holidays, I love Thanksgiving, I love Christmas, … >> find out more...