Christmas | life | shopping

Christmas Shopping (almost) Done!

By on December 4, 2016

We are slowly but surely getting ready for Christmas. We bought our tree last week and decorated it on Friday. It was so sweet watching the kids get excited and put the ornaments up. There is nothing better than seeing Christmas from your child’s eyes. 
This post contains affiliate links which means I may make a small % off the sale of an item. This in no way affects you. 

 Of course with Christmas comes Christmas shopping. I really hate putting things off to the last minute when it comes to holidays so I did a lot of my shopping online. I knew I wanted to just get it done as simple as possible.

This year I feel like Christmas shopping was a lot easier than years past. I didn’t want to buy a bunch of stuff just to have a bunch of things for my kids to unwrap. I don’t want that to be the main focus of Christmas for them. I wanted to get them items they were going to really love and use. I have noticed that some toys they love for a hot minute and after that they are over it and they just collect in a basket and come out randomly but aren’t really played with. Super fun when we need to clean up. 
With each child there was something we knew they specifically needed or wanted. With Ace we knew he needed a bike. He is too tall for his Thomas bike he got when he was 3 so that was going to be his main “big” present. Branden actually found a bike someone was getting rid of and painted it, got new grips and put his old seat on it so that ended up being close to free. Score! Everly has now taken over Ace’s old bike so it was just in time. He also is very into LEGO Dimensions. Branden got him a bunch of those since I know nothing about them. Although I did find an ET one I had to get him. I mean how cute is he?
For Ashlyn I found this KidKraft Savannah Dollhouse with Furniture on Offer Up for $50 originally $150. Again a total score for us, if you are interested it is on sale right now for only $89. She has been into Barbies so I knew that was going to be my focus for her. We also got her and Everly the Holiday barbies. I loved that they had a blonde and brunette one. Last year Branden found the Disney Princess pack for super cheap on like a 50% off day at Target so we have that but will probably only take 2 dolls from it and save the rest for birthdays. 
Everly is still obsessed with baby dolls so I wanted to get her a doll diaper bag and crib. Last year we had gotten them the Step2 Love and Care Deluxe Nursery but it didn’t really have a crib area more of a changing table, so I wanted one for her to have for bedtime. She is such a little mommy. She is always putting her baby dolls on pillows and covering them up to go to sleep. She also carries them around on her hip. It’s so sweet. I felt like I was a grandma buying for my grandbabies because I wanted to find a nice doll diaper bag so it would last. This one was seriously so precious to me so I snatch it up. It also has a matching highchair set that I might get her for her birthday. 
We got them some little extras like these Strawberry Shortcake dolls (I just had to!). They actually smell like the ones from when I was a kid. They each got a small lego set since they like to play legos before bed and a lot of outdoor art stuff. These cute LEGO Friends Party Cakes ones were only $3.99. I love these sidewalk chalk paint. I had some for the longest time and we finally used them a couple weeks ago and it kept them busy for the longest time. I also got regular sidewalk chalk as well. We go through them like crazy.  
I did go to Target’s “dollar” section and get some cute things for their stalkings so overall I think we are pretty much finished with them. I still need to get a couple things for my nieces and nephews but they are pretty easy. 
Are you done with your shopping yet? 

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Christmas | life

5 Easy Christmas Traditions

By on December 14, 2015

We are vastly approaching Christmas and I thought it would fun to share some Christmas traditions my family has done in the past and ones my husband and I do with our children. 

1. Yearly pictures. This is a tradition that is easy to do even with a cell phone camera. Taking the same picture every year is such a fun way to see how your children have changed from the previous years. One cute idea is to have them hold something (toy, book, movie, sport item) that was a big part of their life that year. If your child was in a certain sport they could wear their uniform or hold a trophy. If they loved Mickey Mouse include him in the picture too. It is a cute way to remember what they were in love with.

2. Bake off. When I was little my sister and I would go to my Grandma’s before Christmas and spend the day baking and decorating sugar cookies. We would make them from scratch and be covered in flour by the end of the day. I think this might be one of my favorite memories of my Grandma. To this day I still wish I had the huge wood board she used to roll the dough on. Now I am not the best from scratch kind of baker but it is still fun to get in the kitchen with my kids and have them help me bake cookies and decorate them.
3. Yearly Ornaments. Every year Branden and I like to get the kids a new ornament. I like to pick out something that has some kind of significance for that year. When I was pregnant with Ace I got a snowman couple and the girl one was pregnant. We also will get ones when we go on vacation. I love having ornaments that have meaning behind them. I remember as a little girl looking at all the ornaments on our tree and the ones that were my favorites were hand made, from a special trip or I was with my Mom when she bought it. It’s a nice way to look back on past memories.

4. Christmas morning breakfast. Since I work Monday through Friday I rarely get to eat breakfast with the kids. On weekends they all get up at different times and that means not eating together as a family. I think having a special Christmas morning breakfast is another way to add a nice memory to your children’s lives. You can also have a special Christmas breakfast that you don’t normally have any other time of the year. For us it can be as simple as cinnamon rolls.
5. Looking at Lights. This one is probably so obvious but with all the chaos of getting things done for Christmas it can take a back seat. I like to pick a night to get all dressed in PJs and take the kids to look at lights. We have a church that does smokes, lights and “snow”. It is so much fun for us and the kids. I also love going through the Chick-fil-A drive through and getting them peppermint milkshakes. It’s Florida so milkshakes are totally appropriate for winter here! 


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Christmas | holidays | life

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…

By on December 19, 2014

We have been so behind on decorating this year. I mean we have 3 littles and in November and December it’s been pure craziness. We have gone out of town, had continue sickies, Bran went out of town and my bestie came into town and we both have been working like crazy. To say this has been the busiest couple of months is an understatement. 

We didn’t even get our Elf on the Shelf out till the other night when Ace found him in our Christmas boxes. I mean serious parenting fail on our part. Thankfully he thought Santa brought it for him. It was probably the cutest thing ever. 
I got creative one night and left a gingerbread house kit out with his Elf conveniently named Elf and sometimes Shelf. I think I am going to do some kind of cute breakfast thing for him this weekend or Monday to celebrate Christmas Break. We shall see. 
Tomorrow night I am working at an event in Ft. Lauderdale (N. Federal Hwy & NE 31st St., Ft. Lauderdale) called Holiday Films on the Green so come on out and visit our table! They will be showing Frozen so you know it’s going to be a fun night. 

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Ace | Christmas | Disney

Christmas in Disney!

By on December 29, 2011

It has been quite a busy month for us. I actually have had issues with my internet as well so I haven’t been able to really update.

Ash, me and Branden in Magic Kingdom

We went to Orlando for Christmas and it was great. My cousin and her family came over from Dubai and it was so awesome seeing her. She has two beautiful boys and I do mean beautiful. These kids are insanely good looking. The 2 year old Max has these insane blue eyes and gorgeous tan skin. Both boys have long eye lashes and just sweet faces. I can’t believe she is a Mom. She never wanted children but now she has two.

Ashley with all her niece and nephews

We went to Magic Kingdom on the 23rd and it was a lot of fun. Ace was such a good boy. I got so many compliments on what a great baby he is which made me very proud. My brother’s family also met up with us and their baby Gavin who is about 2 months younger then Ace is almost the same size as him. He is such a peanut. Both the babies were great and all the kids had fun. That night we went to Celebration because it “snows” every hour at night and by snow they mean foam. It was really cute. We got out there with Ace and he kept looking around like what is this!? We got some cute pictures of that night.

Tree in Celebratio

The next day we went to Epcot and it was so hot. I couldn’t believe it. We got through the park pretty fast because we got there when it opened and then left early. We later went to my Aunt and cousin’s hotel pool and hung out with a lot of my other cousins from my Mom’s side and Aunts and Uncles. Unfortunately my sweet angel baby turned into a pissed off little guy. He started really teething that night and he was miserable. He had a hard time going to sleep and kept screaming in pain. I felt so awful for him. We had to leave early but it was probably for the best. I wish we could have spent more time with my cousins but thats life. Then when we got to our hotel we had Ace open two presents, he got a silver FAO rattle from my parents which he LOVED! I really wanted it for him because babies just love those old fashion ones.

Christmas Eve 2011
The next morning we opened presents and Ace made out really well. I didn’t want to get him too much but my Mom got him a ton of clothes and my brother got him two outfits and a toy. My sister also got him clothes and some toys. It was a great first Christmas overall. Branden had to go to work so he had to drive back at 11am. We ended up going to The Gaylord Palms’ ICE. It was really neat and it was Shrek themed. Ace freaked out and screamed then passed out. Poor guy. He was so miserable that day. His teeth are really bothering him. After we left we walked around the hotel which has different city themes inside, one is Key West. We then went to dinner at Shulas which was nice. After that Mr. Cranky Pants returned so my Dad and I went back to the hotel and my Mom and sister went to my aunts and cousins hotel and hung out with them. I was bummed to miss my last opportunity to see my cousin Tara but Ace needed to go to bed, he was so miserable.
Overall the trip was great with some minor teething issues in between.

“Snow” in Celebration

Christmas Eve 

This was at a Christmas party the week before we left 
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