The Best Holiday Thank You Cards

This is one of my most favorite quotes from the movie Elf. (There’s also, “You have such a pretty face. You should be on a Christmas card!”)

When it comes to spreading cheer, I couldn’t agree more. The best way IS singing loud for all to hear.

The second best way is to share your gratitude.

In this season of giving, it’s good to be ready at a moment’s notice to respond with a thoughtful “thank you.” And even if gifts aren’t exchanged, it’s nice to send a year-end thank you to all of your helper angels, like carpool mamas, hair dresser, vet, pediatrician, postman, etc.

So…I like to stock up on pretty thank you notes. I’ve pulled together some of my favorite holiday-themed cards in case you’d like to shop and stock up, too!

(PS. None of these are affiliate links. I just really like these cards.)

Best Holiday Thank You Cards

{ONE} Wonderful Wreath & Rose Gold

If you haven’t shopped at Minted, yet, you definitely need to check it out. It’s a marketplace of independent artists who sell their designs as art, stationery, invites, gifts, home decor and more.

I stumbled upon this pretty wreath design with rose gold foil stamping. You can even personalize these, which is always a nice touch. Depending on how many you order, they’re about $3 per card. The price goes down per card with higher quantities.

{TWO} Whimsical Greenery

This is another personalized card that has a simpler design compared to the first option (no foil stamping).

These sweet thank you notes are from tinyprints and are closer to $1.99 per card.

{THREE} Golden Garden

It wouldn’t be a proper card roundup without including Rifle Paper Co., of which I have a slight obsession. In fact, I can’t believe I didn’t lead with this one.

This gorgeous number has a rose gold design on soft white paper. You can buy individual cards, for those super special people in your life, for $4.50 each. There’s also a boxed set of 8 cards for $16.

Since they’re not overly Christmasy, you could use them any time. Maybe add a fun holiday stamp on the outside to make it more seasonal? Check out these joyful stamps from Minted. >

{FOUR} Lovely Chalkboard

Aren’t these so pretty? I actually ordered these earlier in the week.

Much like option #3, they don’t scream “Christmas.” So I’ll use them throughout the year. I bought a packet of 36 cards for $9.99. Super deal.

The cards came with brown Kraft paper envelopes, which are cool but not very festive. So I picked up some of these pretty A6 red envelopes from Office Max (below). They’re $5.99 for a pack of 26.

I’ll use a gold Sharpie to fancy-up the address a bit. Yay!

{FIVE} A Couple for the Kids

I like teaching my kids to write thank you notes, too. So I plan to get them some of their own cards.

I love these “Herbie and Friends” cards from Papyrus that are accented with a blue border and fun polka-dots. The envelope is built into the card, so once you write your note, you just fold it up and put a stamp on it.

As a bonus, these are currently on sale for $6 for a box of 10 cards!

Here’s a closeup of the illustrated woodland creatures. >

Now, a simpler route (maybe for younger kids) would be to download these free printables. The note has prompts, making it super easy to fill out and personalize. 🙂

That’s a wrap! I hope you have a holly, jolly weekend, my lovelies. Go spread plenty of Christmas cheer.

Thankfully yours,

Kate

PS. Be sure to check out all of these amazing bloggers!! >

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Top 5 Holiday Gifts for Tween Girls

As a mom of twin tween girls, I continue to learn what’s cool lit these days. It’s a never ending process, as things can turn from amazing to boring in a hot minute.

But, I have some good news for the upcoming holiday season!

According to my sources, the following items would make pretty much any girl between the ages of 9-12 happy campers come Christmas morning.

So…if you still have some shopping to do for the sweet little girls in your life (who are teetering on becoming full-fledged teens) you can start here!

(PS. I don’t have any affiliation with these products or stores, so it’s truly non-solicited.)

{ONE} Personalized PopSocket

A pop what?! PopSocket…it’s a phone grip, stand and mount – all in one. I didn’t realize how much I needed one of these until I recently bought one. It’s so much easier to hold your phone. Really, truly.

Here’s a good look at one. The bottom sticks right to your phone. And your fingers grip around the base. You can also get a mount for your car dashboard. But my girls aren’t driving, yet. We’ll hold on that – for as long as humanly possible!! >>
I know the girls will love having them for their silly selfies and Musical.ly videos. It makes a big difference for the reach-and-record. 🙂

Another cool thing about this brand is that they give to Parkinson’s research. Don’t you love supporting brands that give back?

PopSocket offers lots of fun designs, but I decided to go the custom route.

I uploaded a pic of Avery’s favorite bear (Mr. Fluffers) and made this for her. She’s going to freak smooth out. >>

Clara is more into monogrammed items…my Southern belle. So I hopped over to this darling store on Etsy to have one customized for her.

{TWO} Unicorn Fizzy Bath Dust

This gift is super girly and combines two favorite hits for tweens right now: unicorns and bath bombs! As a side note, anything with unicorns is “totally and utterly amazing.” And here’s a list to check out.

This fizzy dust is more like a deconstructed bath bomb. It comes loose in a plastic (non-breakable) jar that you can keep right on the ledge of the bathtub and scoop as desired.

Once this stuff hits the water, it releases a fruity fragrance. And more importantly, it FIZZLES in the water like some sort of magic potion!!

We bought a jar at a local boutique, but you can also get it here.

{THREE} Squishies

Clara has always had a funny obsession with squishing things. When she was a baby, I’d catch her squeezing packages of bread in the store as I wheeled her stroller through the aisle. Still cracks me up. So the invention of “squishies” is so up her alley.

Plus they’re adorable! >>

I don’t even know how the girls discovered these, but they wanted to give some to a friend for her birthday. I ordered online and when they arrived, we almost had to keep the gift.

It’s super calming and satisfying to squeeze these things – and to watch them slooooooowly go back to their original shape. My girls think it’s more fun than playing with slime (which is still a thing, too!)

PS. Slime ingredients make great stocking stuffers. (We don’t use the Borax recipe…we use use clear glue, baking soda, contact solution and food coloring / glitter for accents.)

{FOUR} Animal Onesies

This has been a longer-lasting trend than I had anticipated. The girls wanted bear onesies last year. We found some that were more like coats than jammies, though. They’re pretty thick. In fact, they wore them for Halloween with homemade TY-brand tags. Haha!!

Anyway, they wanted new ones to wear to bed, and the search was so much easier this year. (Trending, I guess!) I ended up finding these darling jams from Justice. >>

{FIVE} Board Games

While iPads and apps are still a source of entertainment for the girls and their friends, ol’ fashioned board games are making a huge comeback.

Here are a few on our gift list. >>

Spontuneous – No talent required, this song filled game capitalizes on the random lyrics that get stuck in your head. It’s a race to blurt out and play a crazy, updated version of Name That Tune but with lyrics as the challenge. It was the #2 Amazon bestseller last year, and is still wildly popular.

Not Parent Approved – Think Cards Against Humanity but in a clean, kid appropriate version. Crazy laughs and memories waiting to be made.

Hearing Things – Just new this year, this game is a lip reading challenge that involves wearing special headphones. Players take turns wearing noise cancelling headphones and have to guess what the other player is saying, as they read the phrases on the cards. Sounds sure to get lots of laughs – which is music to a mama’s ears.

That’s a wrap! What fun items would you add to this list?

XoXo with smiley emojis on top,

Kate

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Five Beautiful Wedding & Anniversary Gifts

Hey, friends! For my weekly list of fun things to share, I wanted to dive into some gift ideas for weddings and anniversaries. June is the month for weddings, so you might be looking for some creative ideas.

Here are a few for us to consider!

{ONE} Pretty Address Book

If someone very dear to you has just gotten engaged, an address book would be perfect for a shower or early wedding gift. Here are two of my favorite finds:

{This book @ erin condren is so pretty – and it can be personalized!)

{This one is via Rifle Paper Co. – one of my favorite brands and has a cloth book cover with gold foil detailing and a ribbon page marker.}

{This is the inside cover of the address book above. Such pretty details.}

Any bride-to-be would love receiving a beautiful book that has been pre-filled with names and addresses of their family and friends.

They’ll be sending save-the-dates, invitations to showers and the big day, and then following up with handwritten thank you notes. So having addresses organized and handy is such a thoughtful gift. You could even tuck in a few “love” stamps as an added bonus.

P.S. This would also make a great gift for a high school graduate. My sister-in-law, Lisa, plans to do this for my niece when she heads off to college in the fall. In fact, she’s the one who gave me this idea in the first place!!

{TWO} Memory Keeper

Not to be confused with a high school trapper keeper, this memory book is a gorgeous place to record details of each anniversary from the first year all the way through the 60th. Details include writing prompts such as: how we celebrated our anniversary, our favorite things at the moment, memorable moments from the year and what we’re looking forward to.

My parents are celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary next summer, and I was just thinking how cool it would be to read something like this…to see how their relationship grew and evolved over the years. They’re such an inspiration to me.

{THREE} Wedding Flowers

Fresh flowers are always a good idea when it comes to gifting. And if you can recreate the same wedding bouquet as an anniversary gift, that’s even better!!

Back to my parents for a sec…my dad loves giving yellow roses to my mom because that’s what she carried in their wedding. Isn’t that sweet?

{FOUR} Registry Leftovers

Many retailers keep wedding registries active for up to a year after a couple gets married, so you could shop for anything left on their list as an anniversary gift!

At the very least, you could double-check their china pattern or towel colors so you can coordinate a gift to match their home.

{FIVE} Save the Date

If you’re feelin’ up to a DIY project, you could tackle this super thoughtful idea. It’s a pillow that includes a copy of a marriage license. These instructions show you how to enlarge and transfer the image to the fabric. You could do this with a wedding invitation, too.

Another way to set the date in stone (or wood in this case) is to paint it on a rustic sign. This cute design includes the couple’s initials and wedding date. <3

That’s a wrap! I hope this gives you some fun ideas to think about this wedding season. Tomorrow I’m sharing a super easy recipe (and really cool jar) for homemade bug spray. Yes, it’s also that time of year. Sigh. We can manage, though, and smell good while we’re at it. See you back soon!

Blessings,

Kate

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5 Fast (and thoughtful) Father’s Day Gifts

I’d like to begin this post by raising this (incredibly awesome) mug in honor of all of the dads out there. It’s almost Father’s Day!!

It’s time to properly celebrate the dad’s in our lives with fun gifts, silly cards and big bear hugs. If you’re still looking for a few ideas you can pull off in time for Sunday brunch, here’s a list of five go-to gifts. >>

{ONE} Daddy Bear Toast

You know the saying, “The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach.” Well, this adorable daddy bear toast will win over both. My girls made mama bear toast for Mother’s Day, and I loved it. (Shown above.)

I think with a small adjustment to the bow, moving it from the ear down to the chin like a bow tie, you have the perfect breakfast to start Father’s day.

It’s as easy as it looks, too. There’s a peanut butter base with sliced bananas for ears and a nose, and blueberry accents for the eyes, and tip of nose.

{TWO} Sweets for the Sweetie

Sticking to the food theme for just a second…

My husband calls our girls little peanuts, so when I saw this idea on Pinterest, it totally caught my eye. Our twin girls made their own version…times two!

It’s so simple (just a small bag of M&Ms tied to a piece of card stock), yet it will definitely make our sweet daddy smile. This could also make any Papa smile, too.

If you’re not into candy, an apple would be a cute substitution. It could be from the “apple of his eye.” You could also say, “the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.” 😉

{THREE} Snazzy Shirt

I know, I know. Ties and shirts aren’t the most creative gift, buuuut if you pick out a super soft, stylish polo like this one from Banana Republic, your husband, dad or father-in-law will definitely thank you. These shirts are some of my hubs favorite. He can wear them on the weekend or even to work.

And according to BR, it’s a “smart, handsome gift that will remind him of you every time he puts it on!” Snap.

You can shop them here or swing by your local store so you have it in time for this weekend. It’s not an affiliate. My husband just happens to really like these shirts. Lol.

{THREE} Personalized Beer

I absolutely love this idea…dressed up beer! You could print your own labels and wrap them around your man’s favorite beer. The ones pictured above would be perfect for a first-time daddy. (I hope the one for “3:00 am feedings” also has a shot of espresso in it.)

My husband would need labels for things like “driving smelly boys home from soccer” and “pre-teen mood swings.” Haha. Cheers to whatever milestones you’re living through right now!!

{FOUR} Photo Card

How stinkin’ cute is this?! My girls are all about the sidewalk chalk, so we might have to whip up a special message for our daddy and try this photo trick.

You can even print it out and glue it to the front of a homemade card – for keeps!

{FIVE} Experiences vs. Things

Perhaps one of my most favorite Father’s Day gift we gave our sweet Brandon was our time. And for a busy mom, teenage boy and two pre-teen girls, time away from electronics is PRECIOUS. Last year we went camping, and it turned out to be the best experience for all of us.

So…think about what kind of experience you can share and give to the dads in your life. It doesn’t have to be a full-on camping excursion. An invitation to coffee or a walk around the block without any distractions could be just the gift they need.

However you choose to celebrate this weekend, I hope it’s fun & full of love!

Blessings,

Kate

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Decorating with Easter Bunnies

Last week I shared a list of Easter ideas using carrots – of all kinds. So I thought it would be fun and most appropriate to follow up with some ideas for using BUNNIES among your holiday decor, gifts, and menu.

First of all, I’m dying over the cuteness in this photo. Just look at these bunny best friends…with beautiful floral headbands!! I wonder if my little Rosie would wear one of these?! {photo via}

Now here are five of my favorite finds. >>

{ONE} Bunny succulents

Can you believe how cute these are?! I didn’t know these succulents even existed until I saw a story on them in this article. Apparently they’re all the rage in Japan right now. And I can see why.

The official name is Monilaria Obconica, and I found an online seller through Etsy. I haven’t ordered any yet, so you’ll have to let me know if you find another good source.

{TWO} Bunny pops

What a smart (and darling) treat for little ones! Two safety pops have been wrapped together and made to look like a bunny with the help of a white pom pom glued on like a tail. Cutie-patooties!

{THREE} Bunny baked goods

Every year I’m on the lookout for something super easy and delicious to add to our Easter brunch menu. I loved these homemade cinnamon twists the moment I saw them – and thought you might, as well. Enjoy!

{FOUR} Bunny napkins

Love, love, love this idea. If you look closely, this is simply a white napkin and a pink napkin that have been layered and folded up into a set of bunny ears.

And how fun to wrap it around an Easter egg! I plan to do this – and add love notes and treats inside each egg for my family.

{FIVE} Bunny gift wrap

Aww. Wouldn’t these felt bunny bags make a precious addition to any Easter basket?

If you don’t have time (or the skills) to sew felt bunnies, not to fear. You could try DIYing some paper sack buns. I’ve seen several tutorials using brown paper sacks, but I love the white in this photo. Any supermarket should carry white bags, too.

That’s my list – for now. What kind of bunny goodness do you have up your sleeve for Easter? I’d love to know!

Blessings,

Kate

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Friday Wrap: Birthday Party Edition!!

Sorry I’ve been MIA lately. I’ve been down-for-the-count with a terrible cold – topped off with allergies. Lovely, I know. The good news is that I’m so much better now and finally able to share some pics from my twin girls’ 11th birthday!!

We had a little shindig at our house to celebrate, and the theme ended up being a mermaid-unicorn-fairy-rainbow-pizza party. (When in doubt, just mash it up.)

And did you see the shirts I found at Thug Life?! They couldn’t have been more perfect. As seen below.

{My sweet birthday girls. We made a photo frame out of black matte board and hot-glued tissue paper flowers to the corners to glam it up a bit. I can’t wait to get into more details…}

It’s safe to say all of the girls had a mythical, magical time. And I wanted to share a few of the highlights.

Maybe this will spark some ideas for your next birthday bash?

{ONE} Rainbow Flowers & Heart Droplets

We gotta start with the decorations. I had so much fun playing around with inexpensive craft stuff, such as paint chips and tissue paper, to create a darling party atmosphere.

I used rainbow colors, because what mermaid-fairy-unicorn doesn’t love rainbows?!

I made tissue paper flowers for the table and giant tissue “clouds” for the ceiling. Then I made it rain up in here with strands of ribbon and hearts dangling from the lights.

Here’s a closer look at the rainbow heart droplets.

Directions: I tied several strands of thin ribbon to the base of our chandelier. Then I glued rainbow-colored hearts (back-to-back) directly onto the ribbon. Super easy.

Want to see the secret to those perfectly shaped hearts? >>

Voila! I used my heart-shaped paper punch.

And all of those beautiful colors were compliments (literally) of Lowes. I got a large stack of paint chips in a variety of pastel colors.

Here’s a closeup of the pinks. I love the ombre look you get from using paint chips, too.

PS. Punching out all of these hearts was the perfect activity for my girls. They were definitely involved in all of this magic making.

We had so many hearts, we even sprinkled some on the table – like rainbow confetti!

{TWO} Rainbow Cupcakes & Candies

Of course we had some rainbow-themed goodies!

I was obsessed with these cupcakes. Avery found the idea on Pinterest, so we had some inspiration. Then she and her sister made these all. by. themselves. No joke. All of those hours watching Cupcake Wars is paying off.

Directions: After baking up some vanilla cupcakes, they added a few drops of blue food coloring to their buttercream frosting. We found some Airhead Xtremes Rainbow Belts at Walmart, so they cut them in small strips and formed them like rainbows over each cake. And the clouds, as you probably guessed, are mini marshmallows. <3

Here’s a view from above. The girls did such a lovely job plating these sweet treats, too.

Here’s a wide angle of the table, so you can see the confetti hearts, tissue paper flowers and cupcakes all hanging out just waiting for the mermaids, unicorns and fairies to arrive.

Oh, and we also made a candy station using rainbow suckers, fruity Twizzlers, and tropical Skittles so their friends could “taste the rainbow.”

The girls thought it was funny to call the Skittles “unicorn poop.” I totally agreed.

And just so everyone wasn’t completely bouncing off the walls, I offered a more natural rainbow selection of fruit when it was time for pizza. #momapproved

{THREE} Fun Photo Frame

Back to the photo frame for a hot minute. As soon as all of the girls arrived, we went to the backyard to take fun pics inside the frame – photo booth style.

I made sure to take a pic with each guest and the birthday girls. Here are a few snaps >>

After the party, we printed out each of the pictures and tucked them inside personalized thank yous!!

{FOUR} Mermaids in Action

We decided to officially kick off the party like mermaids – and went swimming at a nearby indoor pool.

They were the cutest, sweetest mermaids I had ever seen.

I loved this action shot. All of this splish-splashin’ fun was followed by snacks of goldfish and Roarin’ Waters – a mermaid’s favorite snack. They nibbled all the way back to the house where we had more fun activities planned.

{FIVE} Fairy Gardens

The girls put on their best fairy faces and painted mini bird houses for their gardens.

This was Clara’s creation. >>

I bought plastic liners from the garden store, filled them with soil, then offered up an assortment of rocks, seashells from previous vacations, gems, beads and anything else I had in my craft area that felt right for a fairy garden.

The girls had a blast decorating and chatting. This is what Avery pulled together. >>

Once they were finished, we sprinkled grass seed all over the soil. Grass is pretty inexpensive and germinates in less than a week, so the girls had something to look forward to when they left!

Here’s a pic of Avery’s garden today. She has already mowed several times with scissors! >>

That’s a wrap!

After a few planned activities, I just let the girls do their thing…create Music.lys, eat pizza, snack on candy and eventually watch a movie in sleeping bags upstairs. They woke up to pancakes and more rainbow fruit before heading off into the sunrise.

It was a total, successful, drama-free party – thanks to such sweet friends.

And the girls and I want to thank you for reading along and letting us share their birthday fun.

We’d also like to give a shout out to their big brother, Evan, who was incredibly cool about having a house full of girls on a Saturday night. I’m sure he was thinking, “Thank goodness for video games.” But really, he was such a good sport.

And so was our daddy bear. Brandon is always a super-trooper and helps me every step of the way. I love my people so much!

1 + 1 = 11 😉

I hope you have a wonderful weekend, and I’ll see you next week (pinkie promise) with some more fun ideas to share.

XoXoXo,

Kate

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The Art of Thank Yous

As a properly raised Southern girl, I grew to love writing and receiving thank you notes. Even with emails, texts, Facebook messages and snaps (actually, especially because of those things) I adore receiving a good ol’ fashioned paper note with ink and a stamp. I assume others do, too. So I send them!

As a small confession, though, I still have notes to write from the holidays. That’s why I’ve been doing some note shopping. There are so many beautiful options to choose from, I gathered a list of my faves.

Walmart: Polka Dots & Roses

{I actually picked up these darling cards from Walmart yesterday. They’re not specifically labeled as “thank you” cards, so the girls and I can use them for all kinds of note sending.}

Here are some more beautiful options. I might have to stock up on these for future gratitude. >

Zazzle: Black Stripe with Pink Flowers

{Don’t these remind you of the ones I bought at Walmart? They have a more direct message, though. And I love that pink flower. Such a pretty detail.}

Rifle Paper: Wildflower Postcard

{I like the idea of sending a simple postcard. And these are just downright gorgeous.}

Kate Spade: Paint Brush Stripes

{This one has it all…hand lettering, a designed envelope and plenty of shine. Thanks, Kate Spade.}

Minted: Personalized Citrus

{I found this in the bridal section of Minted, but there’s no reason you couldn’t order personalized notes like these for some everyday thanks.}

Papyrus: Merci

{This wins in the “playful” category. Love the bright polka dots and circus-style lettering. Oui?}

Rose Arbor @ Target

{Look at that pretty floral font…and matching envelope. Too stinkin’ cute. I can see my girls giving these out to friends. Oh, maybe for their upcoming birthday?}

Paper Source: Typewriter Notes

{Typewriters make me feel nostalgic. When I was little, I would visit my Gram’s house and pound away for hours on her Smith Corona. I’d write poetry and hang it on the walls of her apartment. Seeing this thank you note made me think of those happy moments – and gave me a double dose of gratitude.}

Davie Paper Co. @ Etsy

{Sometimes adding a pinch of humor to a thank you can be just what you – and your friend – needs. And this is a great one.}

Well, I guess I should scoot and write some notes already. If you want some tips on composing a great note, I have some for you here!

Have a great day and know that I’m always and forever thankful for you. I appreciate you reading and being my blog buddy.

XoXoXo,

Kate

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5 Fun Holiday Gifts to Make for Friends

Last year I made batches of simmering scents for my friends, neighbors and teachers. They were easy to pull together and made our house smell yummy. So if you’re looking for a sweet gift idea, definitely check out the DIY instrux.

I’m feeling a little more ambitious at the moment, though. So I plan to make a variety of gifts that are a bit more unique.

Check ’em out, and maybe you’ll be inspired to do the same?

{ONE} Star Wars Snowflakes

Avery’s teacher is obsessed with Star Wars. With Rogue One just hitting the theaters, we thought making a few of these snowflakes will brighten his classroom – and his sprits!

I saw the idea on my niece’s Facebook feed. {Thank you, Mallory!} We’ll tie them right onto Mr. Kelley’s gift bag filled with treats and a gift card to his favorite restaurant.

{TWO} Mason Jar Cocktails

Nooooow we’re talkin’. This is the perfect gift for my group of friends whom I lovingly call Twisted Sisters. Each person has a special go-to drink, so I can easily personalize the gift and wrap it with love.

If you want to make some, too, you don’t have to jump on an airplane or sneak into a hotel room to get those mini spirits. Any liquor store should stock a variety of options. Cheers!

{THREE} Felt Hand Warmers

I thought about making plates of cookies for our neighbor friends, but I’m leaning toward this darling idea. Many of our neighbors have little ones, and with freezing temperatures on the way, I think these felt hand warmers would be a welcomed gift.

I can recycle old sweaters and fill them with lavender and uncooked rice. Then I’ll include instructions to microwave for 30 seconds before slipping into a coat pocket or mittens. Yay for warm hannies!

{FOUR} Paper Flowers

A few of my friends live far away, and I thought this would be a fun way to ship them seasonal flowers – like a few long stems of amaryllis or a bundle of paperwhites for the long cold winter.

All it takes is finding some pretty flower prints online and then printing them on photo paper. Once I drop them in the mail, I’ll have my friends roll and tuck their flowers into a vase. It’s a bit kitchy, I know, but something about it totally makes me smile. I would love getting this in the mail. #becauseflowers

{FIVE} Peppermint Sugar Scrub

Okay, this might be the easiest indulgent gift to make for friends – and even myself. It only requires three-ingredients plus a jar:

  • ½ cup coconut oil
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 12-15 drops peppermint essential oil

Directions:

  1. Melt coconut oil in a medium bowl in the microwave for about 30 seconds and let cool for 5 minutes.
  2. Stir in sugar and essential oil until evenly combined.
  3. Package up into air-tight jars.

Isn’t that a cinch? I think this would do the trick for my tired and dry skin, too. Now that the heat is constantly blowing in our house, my lips and hands are so dry. Peppermint sugar scrub to the rescue.

That’s it for now, sweet bunnies. I hope holiday preparations are coming along smoothly and that you’re not too stressed out.

Remember, you can always tuck one of these babies in your pocket. I do. >>

XoXoXo,

Kate

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5 Ways to Jazz Up Kraft Paper Wrap

Well, hello!! It’s Friday and I finally popped my head up from the flurry of activity around here. Holiday parties, school plays, and shopping pandemonium are all in full swing. Signs of December!

Now that I’ve done a little shopping and shipping boxes are arriving at my doorstep, I have some gifts to wrap this weekend. And I looooove wrapping presents!

I’ve decided to simplify things a bit this year and just use Kraft paper. I bought a ginormous roll from Hob Lob that should cover all of my gifts, and then I’ll embellish with things already on hand – like ribbons, fabric scraps, papers and even fresh greens from the garden. I can’t wait to get all MacGyver with my craft supplies. 

Here are five ways I plan to jazz up my packages >>

{ONE} Layer on the scraps

I have a stash of wrapping paper scraps, and I plan to use them like wrappers to add a splash of color to my brown paper packages tied up with strings. Or in this case, tied up with pretty white ribbons.

{TWO} Lace it up

I had all intentions of embellishing a t-shirt with strips of lace…nearly six months ago. The sewing part proved more challenging than I thought, so now the lace is going to make its debut on a gift – and hopefully make someone smile.

I added a green ribbon to make it more Christmasy, but I think a white satin ribbon would be nice, too. I could add a red or green gift tag to bring in the holiday cheer. Hmm…I might have to do that.

{THREE} Personalize with pizazz

The southern girl in me loves monogramming everything – especially gifts! Instead of spending tons of money on stickers, I cut this letter out of scrap paper and glued it on to the package. I think adding a super fun bow, like this tulle pom pom, makes it even more festive. Party!

{FOUR} Glitter and glam

I saw an idea on Pinterest that used strips of double-sided tape that was sprinkled with glitter to decorate a gift. I thought it looked so pretty, and I headed to the craft store to pickup some supplies.

As I stood in the glitter aisle, I spotted rolls of glitter washi tape. Um…bingo! So much easier, and I didn’t have to deal with a glitter explosion. I just secured a few strips of tape to the gift, added a gold sparkly bow and called it gorgeous.

{FIVE} Simple chalk talk

This miiiiight be my favorite idea so far. I’m really digging the black and white bow that coordinates with the chalk label. I bought these from Hob Lob, btw. They just stick right to your paper and you can write on them with chalk or a chalk marker.

I decided to add some holly leaves to punch up the holiday flair. I have a holly tree on the side of our house, so I plan to use plenty of boughs of holly this season 😉

Hopefully this sparked some ideas for you. My girls said they want to use stamps on their packages, which is awesome. I can’t wait to see how they’ll add their personal touch to each of their gifts.

Have an awesome weekend, my friends. Here’s to t-minus 16 days and counting ’til Christmas!!!

XoXoXo,

Kate

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Easiest End of the Year Teacher Gift to Start Now

I’m usually scrambling at the end of each year to find a gift for our teachers. And when I think about all of the time, love, and effort these amazing people have put into my child’s life for nine months, it makes me wish I had thought ahead!

So here’s what I’m planning. I’m going to start now with a gift that’s meaningful, easy, affordable, and surely appreciated.

A memory keeper.

memory keeper

This is a jar that will hold special memories from the year. And at the end, it will be wrapped and given to each teacher as their gift.

Both of my girls are super excited about this whole project. Our goal is to drop in a note at least once a week. It can be anything from their favorite lesson, funny story, or piece of wisdom that was shared by their teacher.

And we’re being relaxed (and realistic) about how often we’ll remember to do this. I told the girls if they forget a week, or don’t have anything specific to share, that’s totally fine. There might even be weeks they want to share more than one note. (Like the first two weeks of school!) I’m sure it will all work out, and these jars will be filled to the brim with cherished memories come time for 5th grade graduation. Sniffle.

Want to make one yourself? Here’s all you need…

teacher gift1

  • Glass jar: Large enough to contain a year’s worth of notes. You can even recycle something, like a large (and clean) Mason jar.
  • Label: I’m using a chalkboard label, but you could also use individual letters to spell out your message.
  • Maker: I have a chalk marker to write on my special label. (Remember when I used this for my mantel project last Christmas?!)
  • Paper scraps: We’re using bright colored paper so the jar will look festive when it’s finished. I found a pad of 4-inch square card stock from Hobby Lobby, which fits nicely in our container. Any scrap paper that’s trimmed neatly will work great.

teacher gift2

That’s it! Super easy, right? Oh, and we keep one for each teacher on the counter in our laundry room – which is a fairly high-traffic spot for us. 😉 That way they don’t become “out of sight out of mind.”

Have a great school year with your sweet kids, and here’s to making happy memories!!

XoXoXo,

Kate

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