Showing posts with label Gift Ideas. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Gift Ideas. Show all posts

If Sisters Were Flowers, I'd Pick You



Did you know that last Thursday was Random Acts Of Kindness Day?  I didn't know there was a such a day, but I think it's a fun idea.  It's nice to get something special on special days, but there's something different and maybe even better about getting something special on a day you didn't expect it at all.

Proflowers offered me a free bouquet to send someone a bouquet of flowers in honor of Random Acts Of Kindness Day, and when I thought about who I wanted to send them to, I decided on my sister!









I am so proud to call this sweet girl my sis!  She inspires me in many ways.  She is so thoughtful and loving toward her family, including me!  She is the kind of person you can always count on, and she always does what she says she will do.  There are not as many people like that as you might think, and I'm lucky to have someone so reliable as my sister.  She also is so good at standing up for herself and what she believes in - I've occasionally recruited her to make a phone call for me to a difficult company, and she knows how to get things done (a relic of her office manager days collecting payments when we used to work at the same dental office!).  I want to be more like her in all these ways!  I'm so lucky to have not just a sister, but a best friend.

I think sometimes we don't take the time to really tell those closest to us how much we appreciate them and what we love about them, and I'm guilty of this too.  That's why I wanted to send the flowers, because I don't tell her enough how glad I am that we're sisters!




I'd encourage you, in honor of the month which holds Random Acts Of Kindness Day, to do something special for someone in your life too - just for no reason!  And if you do, here are a couple ideas:

1. Send flowers.  You can do what I did here and have a bouquet sent!  Proflowers was so easy to order from, had a great variety of flowers, and even delivered to my sister's rural address, so I'd recommend checking them out if you want a swift and easy way to deliver some botanical happiness!

2. Mail a card.  People don't send enough snail mail anymore, and there's something so nice about getting a non-bill piece of mail - especially when you put some thought into telling your friend or family member what is special about them!  We all need some encouragement sometimes.

3. Stop by with coffee.  Especially if you are surprising a mom with young kids, but really, who would turn down coffee?  Except those crazy people who don't drink caffeine, by whom I am continually puzzled.

Have you ever done anything for Random Acts Of Kindness Day?





How My Parents Made Valentine's Day Special (Even When I Was Single)




I have many great Valentine's memories from when I was growing up...and the thing is, almost none of my memories have to do with actually having a Valentine.  I never had a boyfriend until I met Derek, and I met him when I was eighteen years old, so there are a lot of years in there that could have been lonely or depressing, especially when other girls my age started dating.

My parents are the biggest reason why Valentine's Day was never depressing.  There are three things we did as a family that made it fun:

1) We ate an excessive amount of candy hearts (a tradition I continue today).

2) We all broke out the construction paper and made paper valentines for each other every year.

3) My parents gave each other sweet Valentine's Day cards (it's good for a child's heart to see their parents loving each other).

4) My parents always got us a little gift that would be waiting on the table on Valentine's Day morning.

That was enough, even during those tumultuous teenage years.  I think we underestimate the impact of the love of a parent on Valentine's Day.  It doesn't have to be anything big and flashy, just something small to remind your kids that no matter their relationship status, they are seen and loved by you.

I plan to do these things with my kids, and I also am hoping to spread the valentine joy outside of our immediate family to our cousins and friends as well!  I think I have a subconscious goal to not let any children in my kids' circles to feel forgotten on Valentine's Day.

If you are of a mind to join me...I have a long list of Valentine's Day gift ideas for kids on Tommy Nelson this week! Ideas for classroom valentines, and Valentine's Day gift ideas for your own kids too!  Read all my ideas here, then come back and tell me if I missed anything, por favor!

And Happy (early) Valentine's Day to you!








Our Valentine Gifts For 2017 (And 10 More Card/Gift Pairings)



I never really considered myself a "people pleaser".  I fancy myself one of those people who wouldn't change my own opinions or convictions just to please someone else, and I always thought I had pretty good boundaries.

But I realized last year that no, I am kind of a people pleaser.  The way it manifests itself for me is a difficulty in saying "no".  This really became a problem this last fall.  All of a sudden I had several writing commitments and other commitments at church, and barely time to breathe!  

Unfortunately because of this busyness, I decided I needed to let some things go, and one of those things was co-hosting the With Grit & Grace Linkup.  However, I don't see any reason why I can't still share what I want to work on each month!  As far as goal-setting goes, you all already know that I'm not a resolution-making, goal-setting kind of girl.  When I pick a goal for the month, it's one thing, and usually a bit vague at that.  Another blogger wrote recently about how she accomplishes more when her goals are vague - and even though all goal-setting experts say that vagueness is a no-no, I find the same thing is true of me. 

So here is my one, not-super-specific goal for February.

I want to give Valentines!  

To whom?  I don't fully know yet.  However, this goal fits in with my larger focus for the year, and it's also something I just want to do.  I have a hard time with the love languages concept, because I feel like I could claim all of them as a personal love language, but I do enjoy giving gifts, even small gifts.  I like to make my own gifts occasionally too, especially when they are simple.  It makes my non-crafty self feel like I'm not a complete failure in the DIY area!







(Affiliate links below.)



Especially every year around Valentine's Day, I get the urge to make something, which is convenient because Valentine's Day is a great creative outlet! This is one of the things I came up with for the kids to give their friends this year.  Did anyone have some of these crayon melts growing up?  I wrote a whole post once about my first-grade crayon melt wishes.  We have a bunch of broken crayons around, so I bought a heart mold, melted the crayons in the oven, and let them cool completely before I removed them!  

They turned out pretty well, and I am planning on making enough for all the kids' little friends.  I'm still looking for the perfect valentines to include with the crayon melts though!  I've had the opportunity to work with Minted in the past, and this year they gave me a chance to pick out some classroom valentines.  Oh my goodness.  The choices are endless because every single one is so cute!

To help you out in your valentine-giving efforts, I put together a few ideas for little gifts to include with some of Minted's classroom valentines.  But do yourself a favor and check out the entire collection, because there were so many cute ones I didn't have room to share here!  (Also, I'll take feedback on which one you think goes best with the crayon melts.  As I type this, I'm still not sure which ones to pick.)




Firefly Love Valentine - This is a great Valentine for glow sticks, or glow-in-the-dark anything, really.


Banner Takeoff Valentine - I have given airplane gliders as valentine gifts in the past, and this one is the perfect valentine for that!


Sharp Student Valentine - Cool pencils would go with this one.  You could even include a sharpener if you wanted to add something extra.



Bee My Valentine - Minted has a few adorable bee-themed valentines, and if it were me, I'd include a honey stick!


Precious Gems Valentine - So many possibilities with this one.  Ring pops, gem-shaped erasers, plastic jewelry.


Sweet Bubbly Valentine - A bubble gum valentine! Tuck a stick of gum in with it, and there you go!


You Rule Valentine - Colorful plastic rulers, obviously.


School Of Fish Valentine - You could go with gold fish (the crackers), or any sort of fish toy with this one.


Color In My World Valentine - Crayons, and the valentine recipient can finish coloring this one themselves!  Minted has a few valentines that are also activities, like this one.  This one might be a contender for our crayon melts.



Bugs And Kisses Valentine - I would go with inexpensive plastic bug toys or magnifying glasses with this one.  This is also a great example of one of the activity valentines!



Smart Cookie Valentine - Bake some cookies!



The bottom line is that you could choose almost any valentine treat or theme, and Minted probably has a classroom valentine choice that will go with it!  I seriously had a horrible time narrowing down which valentines to show you in this post - it's going to be even harder to pick the ones I want for my kids to hand out.  I'm still debating on whether I'll stick with the "melted" theme, or not!

Do you hand out Valentine's (for your child's class maybe?).  
Am I having a little too much fun with this?  I have this sneaky feeling that putting together Valentine's gifts for other people's kids is supposed to be burdensome, but I think it's so fun!

(And just as a little bonus - check out these Valentine-inspired prints!  Perfect for a gallery wall or as a Valentine's gift for a grown up.)

(I love a beautiful vow print - I have one on our wall!)

(You can customize this print with your own photo.)



Stay tuned and I'll update in a week or two on which valentines I picked to go along with the crayon melts!








Note: I will be receiving Valentine classroom cards to review in exchange for this post.  This is my honest opinion.





One Way To Spoil The Man In Your Life This Christmas


(Note: This post is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group®  & Armor All but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #ArmorAllGiftPack  http://my-disclosur.es/OBsst)


I've been realizing lately that I need to show my gratitude for my husband a little bit more.

There are so many things that Derek does for our family.  He works hard to provide for us, which allows me to stay home with our kids.  He gets up with the kids every Saturday morning and feeds them breakfast while I sleep in.  He spends time reading a book to the kids every night.  He is a good man, a man who is committed to his family, and a man who stays.

That's not something that should be taken for granted in a world like ours, where those last three things are not easy to find.

I've been trying to think of little things I can do for Derek to let him know that I've been thinking about him.  It doesn't have to be anything big, but just small things to show him that I see him, that I see what he does for our family every day, and that I know that he's a catch.  I want to spoil him a bit more with everyday luxuries.

I know many of you are married to good men too - and even if you aren't married I would hope for you that you have a dad, brother, or other man in your life who is there when you need them.  Can I encourage you to expend a little effort to let them know that you see what they do every day and are thankful for them?  It's an especially fun time of year to think of fun surprises with Christmas right around the corner!

And that leads my to a little suggestion, if you aren't sure where to start spoiling the man in your life...start with his car!


I happen to be married to someone who is really into cars in general, but even if your guy is not, I think everyone appreciates riding around in a sparkling, beautifully detailed car.  Derek has actually asked me in the past for car cleaning supplies because he like the process of detailing his car and showing it off afterward.  I was excited to find the Armor All Car Care Gift Pack to give to him - I was sure he would love it!

You can find the Armor All Car Care Gift Pack in the automotive center at Walmart (that's where I got mine - and I've even got a coupon for you! Take advantage of the $3 off digital coupon offer for the Armor All Car Care Gift Pack from Walmart, while supplies last!



The kit is a complete car-cleaning kit, at a really great value.  When I gave the Armor All Gift Pack to Derek, he opened it up and was so impressed with all the products that come with it!  We were excited to try them out on his car - and he gave me a little run down on how to properly detail a car using the products in this gift pack.



So now, I pass the knowledge on to you, in case you want to take it up a notch and also surprise your man by cleaning his car for him (I didn't go that far, because Derek actually enjoys cleaning the car himself, and he is better at it than me!).  What better way to spoil the men in your life with an everyday treat like a sparkling clean car?




Step One: Remove any clutter or trash from the car.

This probably goes without saying, but I'm trying to be thorough.


Step Two:  Wipe down the interior glass with Armor All Glass Wipes.

These glass wipes are a no-streak, no-residue formula, which is fantastic.



Step Three: Wipe down the dashboard, upholstery, steering wheel, etc, with the Armor All Cleaning Wipes.

Can I just say how convenient these are too?  I'm pretty sure Derek is going to keep these in the car for touch-ups as things get dirty on the go!




Step Four: Apply Armor All Original Protectant to dashboard, steering wheel, etc.

This keeps vinyl, rubber, and plastic surfaces shiny and clean and helps prevent cracking, discoloration, or premature aging!  It's the finishing touch.



Step Five: Vacuum the floor and seats.

Derek does this after cleaning the dash so he can vacuum up any dust or crumbs that might fall on the floor.


Step Six: Wash the exterior of the car with the Armor All Wash and Wax.

This stuff washes and waxes in one step, and the Armor All Car Care Gift Pack even includes a sponge and microfiber cloth that are easy on the surface of your car, so you don't even have to worry about buying those seperately!  This product helps protect the surface of your car and keeps it shiny. Derek tells me the waxing helps dirt and water not stick as much too, which is especially useful for keeping the car shinier in the winter, with all the snow and mud.




Step Seven: Focus on the tires.

This Gift Pack comes with two tire products - the Quicksilver Wheel And Tire Cleaner, and Extreme Tire Shine Spray (which keeps your tires that rich black).  I was very impressed with these products.  I watched Derek clean the wheel with it, and it made it look practically brand new!


(I just noticed that Derek didn't use the microfiber cloth for the tires - I think he didn't want to ruin his brand-new cloth yet!  Our tires were pretty filthy.)


Tip: The bucket included with the Armor All Car Care Gift Pack is perfect to fill with warm water for washing the exterior, especially in the winter when hoses aren't an option! Then you can store the products back in the bucket when you are done!




Derek has tried a few different car detailing products over the years, and he is really impressed with the Armor All Car Care Gift Pack and how well all the products worked!  It was almost a little mini-date for us to clean his car together, but if you are trying to surprise your guy and clean his car yourself, the Armor All Car Care Gift Pack has everything you need in one bucket!  If your guy is like mine and likes to do the cleaning himself, this pack would make an excellent gift too!  I'm keeping it in mind for my dad and brother, because this would make a great gift for them too.

The bottom line is that our guys deserve to know that they are loved and appreciated, at Christmas and all through the year.  The Armor All Car Care Gift Pack is just one idea for something we could use to surprise them and let them know that they are better-than-ordinary and irreplaceable to us.




Have you ever cleaned your man's car for him? Do do other little things to show your husband (or father, brother, significant other) that you appreciate them?  

I'm trying to get better at doing something special for Derek on a more regular basis, so share your ideas below!







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