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Archive for the ‘holiday’ Category

The other day when we arrived at my daughter’s dance class I told her we were early.

“Early?” She said with a confused voice “What does that mean?”

I laughed at the realization that she may have never heard this word come out of my mouth in her lifetime… Or at least not often since her brother was born. As much as I hate to admit it, it’s so true… I am late to almost everything.

My youngest sister jumped in to answer for me, “Early means you’re on time.” Wow! Our mom rubbed off on her. Too bad I didn’t inherit her punctuality.

This whole year our church has started at 8:30am. Guess how many times I’ve been on time? … Once. One higher than you thought right? Yea, and I was only on time then because I was giving the talk that day.

I plan to do better next year when church starts at 12:30. It’s not ideal for nap times, but it’s a great potential arrival time for me.

So now that Christmas cards are trickling in my mail box faster by the day, I’m constantly reminded that I still haven’t ordered mine, and faced with the annual question “Should I even do them this year?”

We’ve done family photos the last two years and last year I totally failed at making cards. The year before I at least ordered them, then failed at mailing most. This year I all but gave up on the idea, but then I remembered I had a Snapfish gift certificate for them so I’d better just do it dangit! Worst case scenario I can always hand them out at church and to friends at work. I definitely don’t have 50 people to mail them to.

Of course, any and every time I attempt to do Christmas cards I always order them designed for the holidays AND New Year because there’s about a 95% chance I won’t be getting them to their destination before Christmas.

Here’s what I’m deciding between this year:
holiday cards by snapfish

holiday cards by snapfish

Design Your Own Snapfish Premium Holiday Cards Here!

Of course I need to decide quickly. Luckily they have 2 day and overnight shipping options for procrastinators like myself.

I’m always torn between a classic look and a fun and colorful one. Same goes when it comes to decorating our home for the holidays. Our tree is always colorful, and full of memorable ornaments we either made, or picked out together. We usually put it up the day after Thanksgiving (never before). And I haven’t been able to persuade my husband to get a real one just yet… Maybe next year. Then outside I love the look of classic white icicle lights and white yard decor.

This year I bought a bunch of icicle lights and paid a neighbor to hang them for us. They were gorgeous for two day but then… THEY WENT OUT! I’m so sad. I had hoped maybe it was the breaker or something, but that wasn’t it. I don’t know what happened. Of course after the fact I read that Sears has Diehard LED lights that won’t go out if one goes out, and also come with a 5 year warranty. Shoulda gone there. Now I need to figure out how I can get all these down and returned or whatever. GAH!

But I’m not letting it ruin my christmas. Since we’re less than two weeks out I’m looking for sales and hoping to score some inflatable lawn ornaments and maybe go more fun and colorful outside anyway. Maybe get some giant bulbs to post around the yard–No ladder needed. Of course this may take me until Christmas to get it all up, but hey, better late than never.

When do you decorate for the holidays? According to a survey, 1 in 4 Americans begin to deck the halls a month before Christmas. Whether you go all out, or just want to share what you’ve done and win some money here’s a contest you might want to enter. The winners are random so don’t have to feel bad if you aren’t a candidate for The Great Christmas Light fight.

Let me know in the comments how you decorate for or celebrate the holidays (or if you want, you can give a suggestion for my icicle problem). Everyone who comments will be entered to win a $50 gift certificate to order your (better late than never) holiday cards, or any other smSnapfish product. Join the Snapfish Superfans Program for an extra entry to win. Just let me know in your comment that you joined.

This post was created in partnership with Snapfish and Sears as I’m apart of their #snapfishblogger and #SearsBloggerSquad programs. As always, all opinions (and typos) are my own.

bam-bam-baby-costumeThere’s something about my son’s shaggy fro that always brings a smile to my face. Several months ago it struck me that he reminds me of a tiny cave man. His grunts, destructive nature, and, you guessed it… His wild head of curls all reminded me of Bam Bam from the Flintstones. Sure, the little cartoon character had bleach blond hair, but it didn’t stop me from somehow seeing a resemblance.

After deciding that would be his Halloween costume I realized it would be fun for all of us to be characters from the show and I set out to do some Flintstones DIY costumes. My daughter would be Pebbles, my husband Fred, and I Wilma. If I can find a purple dog shirt I’d love to paint dots on it so Snoop can be Dino.

flinstones-family-costumes-sewingI didn’t want to spend a ton of money on costumes, and I’m happy to say I spent a total of less than $30 on all of these costumes. I bought a thrifted orange t-shirt for my husband, small pieces of fleece for my son’s costume, a quarter yard of cotton fabric for my daughter’s pillowcase top (luckily the ragged tattered look is in for cavegirls cause I didn’t hem it or anything), and some thrifted blue shorts.

wilma-and-bam-bam-costumeswilma-and-pebbles-costumes

I pulled together my costume from a skirt and swimsuit cover-up I had in my closet, and made my necklace using thread and some styrofoam balls.

The “big spending” came from ordering a felt club for Big T and a plastic bone headband for Lil’ J off Etsy.

loving-girlsAside from costumes I haven’t done much else in regards to Halloween prep. I took my sister and Lil’ J to a neighborhood pumpkin patch to pick out some pumpkins to decorate… Right, decorate, not carve, cause frankly I just didn’t have the energy for that this year. Lil’ J painted one at preschool, and the rest we did up with this Hallmark Jack-o-lantern sticker set.Halloween-Pumpkins_0010-copy

Halloween-Pumpkins_0001-copyFun and easy ways to have a festive halloweenMy son even got in on the action, but I’ll admit, I helped him with his Halloween sticker jack-o-lantern because Lil’ J wouldn’t let me help her with hers, which turned out like this:

Halloween-Pumpkins-HallmarkYou have no idea how much willpower it took not to get in there and put the eyeball stickers where they belong, and take off a few of the extra mouth and mustache stickers she stuck on there.

“Don’t you think one beard is enough?” I asked her.

“NO! I like all the beards!”

… And eye-patches and other accessories, all in one clump.

Despite my frustration with her lack of anatomically-correct pumpkin faces, it was still 100% fun and 0% messy.

Halloween pumpkin decoration.I’m planning to paint our last pumpkin teal this year and give out glow sticks and bubbles in lieu of candy. It’s keeping kids with food allergies in mind. Hopefully the neighborhood kids won’t TP my house later. I mean really, who needs one more piece of candy at the end of all this?

We’ve also done just a little bit of yard decorating. I bought this cool Halloween sign from a neighbor who hand made it for $10!

Halloween-Pumpkins_0012-copyHalloween-Pumpkins_0009-copyMy family got all dressed up for Trunk or Treat at our church and surprisingly we won the costume contest (we didn’t even know we were entered!). It was a pleasant surprise. My husband is actually off for Halloween this year so I’m excited to go through the neighborhood all dressed up in my handy creations.

flinstones-family-costumesAfter Christmas, Halloween is probably my next favorite holiday. It’s the beginning of the end of the year, and I get to dress up my kids like adorable little characters (for a limited time).

Are you dressing up for Halloween this year? What are your costumes?

PS: I let my daughter pick out another costume because she wanted one to go with her Aunt’s and we have enough Halloween events to dress up for that I’m ok with her having two costumes. Bonus points to anyone who can name who she is:

Sailor Scout CostumesSailor chibi moon costume

***

I didn’t even get around to sharing all my other fun Halloween stuff, like our trick-or-treat greeter, drop and greet spider (which we actually had to put away because it gives me nightmares) and check out my Instagram for a video of Big T dancing with our dancing treat bag. If you’re still setting up for the holiday, or getting ready for the next, pop in your local Hallmark to get inspired for other ways you can get festive.

I’m passionate about making and saving memories, I’m partnering with Hallmark to share some of my life’s special moments and occasions including getting ready for Halloween! All opinions (and typos) are my own.

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Apr
20
2014

Easter 2014


Mother and children enjoying Easter Joyful preschooler found an egg Easter egg baby Dapper boy with Easter egg Easter egg hunt with baby Lovely siblings dressed for Easter Sunday best
I gave up trying to get a good picture of them both together. And I requested my husband take a quick pic of my and the kids, which turned into a hilarious ordeal including 10 shots out of focus, 5 out of frame, and 0 with all of us looking at the camera. It’s ok though. I really appreciate the effort.

Enjoy this special day with those you love most.

Happy Resurrection Day !

I totally dropped the ball on Valentines Day this year. It’s absolutely one of my favorite holidays. Probably second only to Christmas. But I just wasn’t ready this year. I was just living in the past, pretending it was January, and wondering why it wasn’t 70 degrees yet.

Yes, here in Austin we had our fair share of winter weather (fair share for Texas, not fair compared to the rest of the country). We had a few snow days, canceled school, and temperatures in the 30s. Way too cold for my taste. I can barely function when it’s that cold. So there I was, not functioning or thinking about Valentines Day. Then BAM! It hit me, the party was tomorrow and I didn’t have any creatively awesome treats to pass out.    same-school-valentines I totally copied a friends idea which she saw on Pinterest and made a completely less than adequate version for my daughter’s class, but really, these kids are three. They’re gonna dump out the candy and throw away the rest. I was not fretting about that this year. (Plus her class right now has a ridiculous amount of kids, 14 her age, 28 total, and I was not about to slave over 28 valentines).

So the cute little saying is “So glad we’re in the same school” featuring Sweetish fish in the fish bowl… Get it?

My ink ran out after printing out the first page so I shrank the fish bowls and pushed that little color ink cartridge to its limit. For some reason the first part of the page would be in full color then the back 3/4ths were all jacked up. No idea why, but I’m guessing it has to do with the low ink warning.

same-school-valentines-2I helped Lil’ J write her name 14 times, and she sorted the fish in the baggies.

Valentines Day was nice and warm, luckily I had a cute dress for her that still fit from the year before. Did I take a picture? NO! I suck! Did I make my son a totally adorable Valentines vest with a matching bowtie? NO! I SUCK!

Totally dropped the ball.

father-son

But I did have a date night in with my husband, featuring take out and Top Gun (can you believe I’d never seen it?!) Tom Cruise was smokin’ hot.

valentines-pancakes

The next morning I made heart-shaped pancakes with Lil’ J, which were also nothing like they were on Pinterest. To my defense, I used a 10-grain mix from Thrive. Super healthy, but not super easy to cook in the shape of a heart. It really didn’t matter to Lil’ J though, she thought they were way awesome and made me feel like the coolest mom ever.

mother-daughter

Anyway, I refused to let Valentines Day go by undocumented for my little one. It’s his first one after all! So Sunday I dressed him up, and kissed him up and took pics for his “First Valentines.”

kissy-baby-face

I may make some felt heart garland, a kiddie craft, and a little outfit then do it again this week. I just can’t let it go. I didn’t even Next year I’ll do better. Rain, shine or snow.

kissy-face-baby-2

A few photos from our would-have-been Christmas cards, Christmas Eve and our fun Christmas morning.

So blessed for the chance to celebrate the birth of Christ with the people I love most.

Merry Christmas!

family photo 2013

Christmas-day-2013_0039-copy Christmas-day-2013_0029-copy Christmas-day-2013_0027-copy Christmas-day-2013_0026-copy Christmas-day-2013_0022-copy Christmas-day-2013_0020-copy Christmas-day-2013_0017-copy Christmas-day-2013_0012-copy Christmas-day-2013_0007-copy

Adorable photo props courtesy of Hallmark. Hope you had as much fun with your family as we did!

Christmas time has been my favorite time of year as long as I can remember. Now seeing the holiday through my children’s eyes brings all the fun I remember as a child back to life. We do Santa in our house.  I’m hoping to take my kids to see him today. I know Miss J will be over the moon excited to chat with him but I’m also just as sure Big T will probably cry the moment he settles on his lap. It’s not personal Santa, Big T is just a big Mama’s boy.

The jolly old fellow is a very loved man with the rest of us though. … And while of course we teach the true meaning of Christmas and celebrate Christ’s birthday, we also enjoy the magic of the season.

I haven’t done a ton of decorating this year, but I hope to score big after Christmas and get a nice stockpile going for next year. I wanted to buy a new tree after Christmas but when we unpacked this one I could only find half of the tree stand, so I bought another. I bought a bunch of extra lights for when I found the other half of the tree stand, so I could make a “white light tree” but turns out I just just re-found the half I already had. *sigh*

At least the lights made for cute photos.

Christmas-Lights_0072-copyIn case you wanted to know the settings of this photo: I used my Canon 5D Mark ii, 100mm 2.8L Lens at f/2.8, ISO 3200, shutter 1/250.

It’s Big T’s first Christmas and Lil’ J is totally into it. All she’s asked for is a play kitchen (with pretend cookies), and a sail boat (what the heck?!). She says she doesn’t want a bike, which I was excited to surprise her with, but I guess we’ll hold off til’ her birthday.

Santa is bringing Big T an awesome walker toy for Christmas.

The gift I’m getting is the chance to spend Christmas with my little family, with all of us off of work for the entire day.

Here’s a peek at the magic and memories we’re making at our house. Promise you’ll love it.

Notice the nativity rearranged? No matter how many times I set it up in order, Lil’ J puts everyone in the manger, and sets Jesus’ little hay bed up where the sheep is suppose to go. Also, Baby Jesus has gone missing after she decided to carry him around for a while. Hopefully he’ll turn up before Christmas.

Do you mix magic and real meaning at your house?

siblings in christmas lightsAs I celebrate the Christmas, I’ll be sharing some of our experiences in a holiday series sponsored by Hallmark. This video features a North Pole Communicator and North Pole Magic Mail, as well as keepsake ornaments I purchased and others I received as gifts.

hallmark life is a special occasion

Nov
02
2013

1: My Children


I love the gratitude lists during this month leading up to Thanksgiving. I’m going to chime in this year too.

I’m thinking a photo and a sentence. And since all I ever photograph is my children, is should be a fun project for me to take photos of other things now that I’ve gotten them out of the way.

So Day 1: My children, who have transformed me into a new woman capable of love and compassion deeper than I ever knew. So thankful for them.

I'm thankful for my children

As you may remember my daughter had a very specific request for a Halloween costume this year. She wanted to be a “girl lion” the kind “without a mane.” But when hunting for her costume, she didn’t want one that appeared as though it was eating her head, or one that was more tutu-frill-frill than an actual lion should be.

103113_0033-copyI ordered her brother’s coordinating costume online, then took her to a costume store so she could try some on. Of course that’s when the whole lion idea went out the window because the first thing she saw hanging on the way was a Rapunzel dress. So much for my pride (pun intended).

My husband was working so we went trick-or-treating with some of our friends. After a street or two miss thang got tired of the whole trick-or-treating thing.

biracial kids halloween“Umm, I think I have enough candy now,” she told me.

“Ok, well just keep showing off your pretty costume and say ‘Happy Halloween!'”

She thought about that for a moment. “Ok, cause I don’t want too much candy.”

Don’t worry kid, I’ll be taking care of that. Ever heard of a candy tax?

I captured Big T’s day with candy of course. I’m still chugging along on his 365 project though I’ve neglected to share them for a while. I’ll try to get on that next week.

205

My favorite part of the evening was scrolling through everyone’s adorable Halloween photos on Instagram and my Facebook feed. Halloween has transitioned from a candy hunt, to a fun social tween event, to a semi-horror celebration with haunted house tours, and back to a candy pursuit.

I wish you could post photos in blog comments, I want to see what all of your kids dressed up as. Share a link if you have photos!

Hi! I’m Jennifer Borget

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I'm a part-time journalist, full-time wife and mother striving to make the world a better place and inspiring others to do the same. This is the space where I share my journey in making the most of every day.

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