Category Archives: Christmas

Starbucks Buy One, Get One Holiday Drinks are HERE!

starbucks BOGOIt’s like Christmas is here already!

Starbucks is offering Buy One, Get One Free Holiday Beverages from November 14th – 17th between the hours of 2-5pm.

I can’t think of a better early Christmas present, can you??

This momma needs COFFEE!


Live Reindeer Cam!

santa sleigh and reindeer

How awesome is this?!

Yes, I am 31 years old and I still use the word awesome, especially when it comes to all things Christmas.

Check out this Reindeer Cam and let the kids (and probably your own) excited squeals take over!

My middle daughter is SUPER excited to “see it poop”…

So there you go. We are waiting anxiously on bated breath in this house!

Super Simple Elf on the Shelf Ideas

elf on the shelfSo who’s ready to break out their Elf on the Shelf already?

For me, it signifies the start of a beautiful little threat game I like to call: “You better get your shit together, the Elf is WATCHING!”

And besides, the little guy is sorta cute – with maybe a touch of creepy.

There are so many different types of Elves you can choose from nowadays, including precious girly ones! Either way you swing it, the Elf on the Shelf has quickly become a tradition for thousands of families.

Of course, putting your Elf on an actual shelf is easy peasy. Joining in this new found craze of setting up your Elf in certain “situations” to surprise the kids each morning? Plain ol’ exhausting.

But who am I to deny my children at least a few mornings of that crazy Elf’s shenanigans? So here’s a list of simple Elf on the Shelf ideas that you can do or set up in no time and still feel like you’re letting your Elf buddy live up to his full expectations. No mess or complicated shiz = Happy Mom!

The Pooping Elf

Nothing says kid-approved like POOP. Take a bakers cooling rack, lay a sheet of white paper over it and shove the Elf’s feet through the paper and holes of the cooling rack. This will allow the Elf to be put in the squatting position. Put an unwrapped Hershey kiss under his bum. Congratulations, you have a pooping elf!

elf on the shelf pooping

Photo courtesy of The Fancy Stanton

The Toilet Paper Elf

It truly doesn’t get any easier than this. Put your Elf through the middle of a roll of toilet paper and roll him down the stairs. Or if you want to be kind, roll it down the steps first, and then put the Elf in. Who knows, he might enjoy the ride!

elf in toilet paper

Photo courtesy of A Thrifty

The Drunken Syrup Elf

All Elves love sugar. Everyone knows that. All kids love sugar. Everyone knows that too. This syrup slurping elf is pretty self explanatory but is still way up there on the cuteness factor.

elf syrup

Photo courtesy of

The Cereal Overdose Elf

Another super simple idea. Take any box of cereal, open it up and shove your Elf face first into the bag. Make sure his legs are sticking up though! A few pieces of cereal around the box gives a nice effect.

elf in cereal

Toilet Paper TREE Elf

An alternate version of the Toilet Paper Elf. If you aren’t too much of a tree freak, like me, you won’t mind winding some toilet paper through the branches to make your Elf appear mischievous. Just make sure your small humans don’t yank the paper down and bring several ornaments along with it!

elf toilet paper tree

Photo courtesy of

Held For Ransom Elf

Grab a bunch of band-aids, “tape” your Elf to a wall, fridge, cabinet – whatever floats your boat. Find a super hero toy or Nutcracker statue or anything else that is a bit menacing, and have them stand “guard” around the Elf. Your kiddos can come to the rescue!

bandaid elf

Marshmallow Bath Elf

A bowl. Some mini-marshmallows. An Elf. Done.

marshmallow bath elf

Photo courtesy of

These are just a few of many, many Elf on the Shelf ideas you can set up this holiday season. Don’t be afraid to use your imagination! The kids will love anything you do, so long as they think that sneaky Elf did it all on his own. Happy Elfing!

5 Easy Ways to Put Peppermint in Your Holiday

There are so many things to look forward to when the holiday season rolls around. Decorated trees, twinkling lights, snow. Hot cocoa, warm-hearted movies, family.

And peppermint.

In general, my life motto throughout the year is


but when it comes to Christmas, peppermint takes on a whole new meaning. And I try to shove it, stir it or bake it into everything.

That being said, let’s get right to the 5 easy ways to put peppermint in your holiday!

Peppermint Brownies with Buttercream Icing


These peppermint brownies by i heart nap time can whipped up in a shake. Probably eaten in a shake too – but it’s Christmas, calories don’t count. So get whipping!

White Chocolate Peppermint Dipped Oreos

peppermint oreos

Peppermint. Oreos. Chocolate. A perfect trifecta? Absolutely. Pink Cake Plate put together these super simple treats that would be great for a holiday gathering or friendly gifts for neighbors. Want to make your own? Pink Cake Plate says you will need:

Peppermint Oreos

White Candy Melts

Andes Peppermint Crunch Baking chips

\Melt the candy, dip the oreos, shake off excess candy, sprinkle with peppermint baking chips. Let harden.  EAT!!!

Peppermint Marshmallow Stirrers

peppermint marshmallows 2

What is hot cocoa without marshmallows? Especially peppermint marshmallows! Bargain Blessings puts together a version that is not only easy to assemble but also perfect for stirring a cup of hot chocolate. All you need are marshmallows, peppermint sticks, white chocolate and red sprinkles.

Melt the white chocolate in a glass bowl in the microwave just until melted. Stir until smooth. Dip the end of each peppermint stick into the chocolate to act as a “glue” and put a marshmallow on the end of each stick over the chocolate end. Dip the marshmallow halfway into the chocolate and then put a small bit of sprinkles evenly over the chocolate. Let cool and store in an airtight container.

Peppermint Snickerdoodles


Yeah, yeah. So quick peppermint desserts might be slightly dangerous for our waistlines. To that, I say: Eh, who cares? Especially when you see how easily you can throw together these peppermint snickerdoodles from Pillsbury.

Peppermint White Trash Candy

peppermint white trash

Not exactly sure how I feel about the name, but certainly sure how I feel about eating it. All of it. In my stomach. NOW. This peppermint white trash candy by The Domestic Rebel may just be a new yearly tradition for me. One I may or may not share with others. YUM-O.

I hope that everyone has a very peppermint-y holiday season – and okay, I guess you should probably share some of this goodness with others too. Just be sure to keep plenty of these 5 easy peppermint treats in stock for yourself as well for those long cold winter days!

Creating a Polar Express Adventure Night

polar express 1

The holidays are such a great time of year to create memories and participate in family traditions. In our home, one of our favorite things to do is “Polar Express” night, based off of the movie The Polar Express. The kids go absolutely crazy for it, squealing and jumping up and down at the mere mention of it’s name.

Of course, with 3 kids my motto is always to have fun but to keep it simple. So with that in mind, I came up with a few steps to make the evening of our Polar Express adventure memorable.

Print a train “ticket” and bell tags

You can find these free Polar Express tickets and bell tag printables HERE on the The Crafting Chicks website. It may seem like a cumbersome step, but trust me, these DO matter!


Make some silver “sleigh” bells

I purchased a fairly decent bag at the Dollar Store, but you can also purchase them from any local craft place. Be sure to have one per child to avoid a big fight! Print and cut out a bell tag from your free printable sheet (link above) for each bell and attach it with a piece of string or ribbon. Hang the bells with tags on your Christmas tree or have them somewhere handy for later in the evening. If you can manage this without the kids knowing they exist, even better!

silver bellsleigh bell

Snacks for the “train” ride

Prepare a snack and hot cocoa for the “train” ride. Our kiddos are big time popcorn eaters so I usually pop a bag, mix in some red and green m&m’s and any other goodies I’ve got handy, and then brew up a batch of hot chocolate. After all, it’s not the Polar Express without the famous hot choc-o-late!

Photo courtesy of Pams Party & Practical Tips


Photo courtesy of Pams Party & Practical Tips

Take a ride on the Polar Express!

After the snacks and cocoa are ready, have the kids line up at the car with their tickets so that they can board the train (whatever make and model yours might be!). If you own a hole puncher, pull it out to punch each ticket. No need to spell out any crazy words like the conductor in the movie. That’s just crazy-pinterest-mama type stuff!! A punch or three will do ya and keep your tiny tots from freezing before they load in. Collect their tickets and hand out the refreshments.

believe ticket

Tour the local Christmas light displays

Your Polar Express ride can be through your neighborhood, a local Christmas light display event or anywhere that you may find decorated homes, yards or buildings. Turn the holiday music up, sip your cocoa and mosey through town while taking in the sights.

christmas lights house 2 christmas lights house

A movie viewing and special bell surprise

When you return home from your “train” ride, head into the house and snuggle down to watch The Polar Express movie. Once it ends (or earlier, if you think you might have a few sleepyheads on your hands), pass out the sleigh bells you’ve made and encourage them to ring the bell. Important: You MUST NOT let on that you can hear it ringing. If you are a Polar Express newbie, make sure you Google the Polar Express sleigh bell so you know what you’re up against!

santa PE scene PE boy with bell

So there you have it, a wonderful evening full of fun, yummy treats and a truly terrific Christmas movie – and most importantly, a night that your children will look forward to each and every holiday season!

Kids Hand & Foot Print Art

Taking a print of your child’s hand or foot, whether it be at birth, in school or for an at-home craft, has always been a popular way of documenting how much they’ve grown. These prints are not only great for a rainy day afternoon project, you could also frame them to hang in your home as artwork or even give them away as gifts. What grandparent wouldn’t want a tiny set of painted hands from their nearest and dearest?

Of course, simple hand and foot prints will always be perfect just the way they are. But if you’re looking to spice them up a bit or even make them holiday related, check out these cute and easy examples that can be done in a cinch.

Footprint Robin

bird footprint

Hand Print Tree

handprint tree

Hand Print Owls

handprint owls

Penguin Footprint

penguin footprint

Hand Print Wreath

wreath hand print

Snowman Footprint

snowman footpritn

Christmas Tree Footprints

christmas tree feetprint

Christmas Light Finger Prints

(not exactly a foot or hand print, but too cute not to share!)

fingerprint lights

Turkey Hand & Foot Print

turkey foot and hand pritn

Tutu Hand Print

tutu handprint

Dinosaur Hand Print

(check out the link for the whole alphabet!)

dinosaur handprint

There are hundreds of ways that you can capture your little one’s hand and foot prints. Let these serve as inspiration to create your own versions as well!

Happy Printing!

Top 20 Christmas Toys List for 2013

‘Tis the season for the bearded guy in the red suit to soon make an appearance… Oh my goodness, it’s almost Christmas!

Of course, glad tidings and good cheer should always be of the utmost importance on all the “Top” lists this time of year. But if you ask the kids, the only things racing through their brains right now, as you’ve probably already guessed, are TOYS!

Need a little help in getting your holiday shopping started?

Here is a Top 20 List of Toys that your little ones just might be asking Santa for this year:

1. Barbie Dream House

The new 2013 version of the Barbie Dream House is here and it’s better than ever!

 barbie dreamhouse

2. Playstation 4 Console System

It’s here! The long awaited Playstation 4 is sure to be a showstopper!

playstation 4

3. Disney’s Frozen Anna Doll & Dress Combo

From Disney’s newest princess movie “Frozen”. Every little girl will love the main character, Anna!

frozen anna

4. Zoomer Robot Dog

Not up for having a live pooch under the tree? Try Zoomer instead. He can even learn new tricks and commands!


5. Sofia the First Talking Doll

This sweet gal says all sorts of fun things and comes with her woodland friends.

sofia the 1st

6. Hasbro Bugs in the Kitchen game

Taking the Hexbug Nano critters to a whole new level! Family game night will never be the same.

bugs in the kitchen

7. Lego Friends Downtown Bakery

The newest addition to the Lego Friends series. Hours of building fun for everyone.

lego friends downtown bakery

8. Trikke Electric Scooter

Scooters worldwide may never get any cooler than this! The 3 wheel feature gives extra stability for beginners.

electric scooter

9. Furreal Friends Cuddles My Giggly Monkey

Says more than 100 responses and has a seriously cute giggle.

furreal monkey

10. Anniversary Barbie Collector Doll 2013

This year’s collector Barbie and she is absolutely stunning! For kids and adults alike!

barbie collector doll

11. Easy-Bake Ultimate Oven

Let your little ones bake their very own sweet perfections.

easy bake oven

12. Nabi 2 Kids Android Tablet

The latest version of this learning tablet has over 150 new features!

nabi 2

13. Step 2 Create & Play Kitchen

Every little girl likes to help in the kitchen, why not give them their very own?

play kitchen

14. Remote Control Dusty Cropchopper

From Disney’s movie “Planes”, this remote control plane is awesomely cool and even talks!

dusty cropper

15. Razor Berry Scooter

A fun way to promote outdoor activity and it comes in several fun colors too.

razor scooter

16. Hexbug Nano V2 Helix playset

Use your imagination to design your very own obstacle course for those creepy crawly Hexbugs. Eek!

nano v2

17. Lincoln Logs

An oldie, but always a goodie. These building logs will make anyone want to create a log cabin village.

lincoln logs

18. iPad mini

For those who have been REALLY good this year, perhaps an iPad mini is in their holiday future? No explanation needed, this thing rocks.

ipad mini

19. Nook HD+

For those looking to spend a little less but still give a terrific piece of technology, check out this newest version of the Nook reader.

nook hd

20. Nerf N-Strike Elite Centurion Blaster

Just like it’s serious name, this new Nerf gun has some serious shooting power. Look out!

mega centurion

These are just a few of the many new, and very cool, toys that are out this 2013 holiday season. Good luck in your shopping adventures and Happy Holidays to all!

Redesigned By M

DIY-er who loves to redesign, repurpose, and reorganize just about everything.

Nicole Chamberlin

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