Monday, December 26, 2011

I don't usually do this, but what the heck?

Love this picture: Alex, Connor, Baylie, Masen, Rylee
Ok, this picture has nothing to do with this post (except that it's also Christmas-related), but I had to share it for 3 reasons...1. It's so stinkin' cute 2. because I always try my best to include pictures in my posts b/c it makes them more interesting...and finally 3. Baylie has had a crush on Connor (the boy she has in a choke hold) since the day they met and I just think it's so sweet how her face lights up every time he's around!

SO anyways...on to what I was originally writing about:

I'm trying my best to do a little after Christmas organizing and cleanup, so I decided to start with my email, is there a lot of crap in there! It's all those emails that I save just in case I ever have a chance to get back to them b/c I don't want to miss out on a great deal, but then those same deals keep piling up day after day and the next thing you know I have 200+ emails to delete.
So since I wouldn't be Debbie if I didn't get easily distracted during most things that I set out to happened again today.
I was deleting all those emails at warp speed when one caught my eye, so of course I opened it, sipped my coffee and started reading...
It's one of those "living social deals" we all get, but this one is for a cute little product called "Little Passports", so I thought I'd share it with you. I'm always trying to think of new ways to show my kids what a big world we live in and how there is so much more out there to learn and explore and this sounded like a really fun and age-appropriate way to do it. So check it out if you want, if not, no big deal, just delete this post and get on with your day! I just like to pass along fun things I find just in case you might be looking for something like this too!

NOW BACK TO CLEANING AND ORGANIZING...that is until the next thing catches my eye :)..

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Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Still looking for that perfect gift?

Here it is again, 3am and I can't sleep. No, surprisingly, my mind is not filled with visions of sugar-plums, instead it's filled with visions of all the shopping I still need to do in the next few days as the final countdown to Christmas marches on. It goes without saying (although I'm going to say it anyways) that getting the perfect for gift for everyone on your Christmas list can be a very daunting task. Especially now that the kids are out of school and it's nearly impossible to shop without losing your ever-loving mind. I've already lost my mind, so this is an especially tricky task. So in the hopes of helping even one sleep-deprived mom like myself out there cross something off her list I thought I would share a few fun and "out-of-the-ordinary" places I've managed to pick up some great gifts for my family that you won't find at TOYS 'R US OR TARGET (you know you just said it with a french accent).

Two of my favorite places to find creative gifts for the kids: Joann's and Michael's. They always have great arts & crafts gifts that kids just love. Plus, I love their selection of Crayola products, a lot of things you won't find in the "big box" stores.

The BOOK STORE...ah, I can smell it now...I LOVE BOOK STORES. I seriously could spend an entire day perusing the aisles reading all the book titles and convincing myself that one day I will visit every country, make every recipe and educate myself on every famous person on the covers of those books. The kids section is amazing, chock-full of unique gifts for kids of all ages, again, stuff you won't find at the big name stores. Plus, I love the section up front near the registers with all the fun stuff for stocking stuffers....FYI, try to find a mom-and-pop bookstore, they always have some of the coolest stuff. Since I live in Florida, I especially love finding historical books all about my state and hometown, just fascinating!

Cracker Barrel, yeppers you read it right, Cracker Barrel. Don't knock it til you try it. They have a great selection of gifts for young and old alike...from old fashioned candy, to unusual knick knacks for the home to a kid section that is out of this world. It's like a blast from the past and the best part, most of the toys DON'T require batteries and they aren't TWIST-TIED onto the cardboard packaging (ugh, I hate that!). I swore this Christmas I wasn't going to buy anything that took more than 2 minutes to remove from the box, any longer than that and if you're kids are anything like mine, they've lost interest. I picked up that big 'ol checkers game for the kids this afternoon. Hopefully they'll love playing it just as much at home as they do there...we'll see :)...Oh yeah, the bonus to shopping at Cracker Barrel is you can grab a yummy meal after you've worked up an appetite from all the shopping!

So that's least that's all I can think of right now. I hope this helps you with your holiday gift hunt. I know I'm always looking for new places to get the perfect gift for everyone on my list, so please, by all means, if you have any fun "out-of-the-way" shopping secrets you'd like to share I'd love to hear about them.

From one exhausted mom to another - Happy Holidays!!! And to me a goodnight, a goodnight sleep that is...or should I say a goodmorning sleep since it's now 4:30am...zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

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