Cyber Monday! Get the deals before they are gone!

This post contains affiliate links. I am also a consultant for Usborne Books & More.

I am mostly done with all my Christmas shopping! I took advantage of all the sales that were available today and this weekend. Here are a few sales to help you get gifts for any person – kids, grandparents, boyfriends and husbands, wives and mothers, friends and all the relatives in between 😉

Monday Usborne
cyber monday sale promotion


Craftsy

24 Hour Cyber Monday Sale! 30% off everything with code CYBERSAV
Gifts Under $25

Tiny Prints Cyber Monday

Wedding Paper Divas 30% Off Sitewide Cyber Week 300x250

FREE shipping with promo code YIPPEE
My Night Before Christmas from ISeeMe

 

30% off print book orders $150+ with code: CYBER30
20% off print book orders $75+ with code: SMALLGIFTS

 

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Decluttering Christmas presents – Kids edition

I have a few stocking stuff posts (like 50 Stocking stuffers for women,  and 100+ Stocking stuffer and small gift ideas for men, and Non-candy Easter basket and stocking stuffer ideas for children) that get a bit of traffic. If you’ve read them, you know that I am a huge fan of Christmas stockings full of goodies (and present-giving in general). This year, I really want to focus on fun, family, and the meaning of Christmas, rather than all the focus be on PRESENTS! This is becoming more important as my first born gets older (he will be 2.5 years old during Christmas) and with another one on the way. Also, if you have kids, you know how quick they accumulate stuff. I don’t even know how this happens, but it seems like magically, overnight, toys have multiplied. We rarely even buy toys, encourage family to gift other things, and yet still, there is a house full of toys!

I am taking a step back from filling stockings with toys and trinkets and little things that will get lost inside the couch or thrown away in a month. Well, there may still be things that get lost inside the couch, but the point is, I am trying to avoid the junk and clutter.

Have you noticed that some of the greatest toys your little ones have played with are actually not “toys?” Stacks of cups, a cardboard box, a pen and a back of an envelope, a table cloth fort, small pumpkins from the local pumpkin patch (I kid you not, my toddler is in love with his little pumpkins) – all of these things, and more, have entertained your child and didn’t come wrapped in plastic, secured with zip ties, and then sealed in a box. They allowed the children to use their imagination. That’s why this year I am focusing my gift-giving for my child on things that will allow him to play in different ways and offer creative freedom. I am also focusing my stocking stuffers on “needs.”

It may be early to start planning Christmas gifts (and I may have gotten my cousin’s kids’ gifts already, at Target, for 70% off during their toy clearance), but my little girl is set to make her arrival in January and I just love making lists, planning a budget, and all that fun stuff. So here are a few tips I am following to decrease the amount of “stuff” we don’t need (but still have fun giving gifts), and a what I am giving my son for Christmas.

decluttering christmas

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100’s of free printable gift tags and labels

Who loves free printables?! I have searched for and scanned through, hundreds of free holiday gift tags and label printables. Although this list is HUGE, I didn’t even include all of them!

No matter what you use as gift wrapping, there is a gift tag here that will go great. I love the little woodland creatures and vintage-inspired tags. Which ones are your favorite? Oh, and did I mention they are all FREE? Plus, they are super easy to download and print!

Have you found any great Christmas gift tags this year?

Free Printable Labels

Now the hardest part is deciding which gift tags to use!

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7 Different ways to create your own photo canvas

DIY canvas photos are quite popular right now. There are lots of tutorials online ranging from really easy, to a bit more difficult. I’ve compiled a list of the most common tutorials so that you can give it a try! Whether you are trying to save money, make memorable gifts, do something heartfelt, or fill your empty walls, this is a great project!

Canvas packs at Michaels are $19.99 for TEN 8×10’s! They also go on sale for 40-50% off. Thats $1-2 for each canvas. Printing at Costco is also very inexpensive. Below is a price list, but 8×10’s are only $1.49.

Below are several different tutorials on how to make your own canvas pictures. I’m sure you can find one that suits your needs!

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100+ Stocking Stuffer, Easter Basket, and Gift Bag Ideas for Men

Welcome! Hopefully after reading this post and all the comments you will have a better idea as to what to get that guy in your life, whether it be your son, brother, husband, or dad! And honestly, this list can be great for any hard-to-shop for person! Many of these ideas are gender-neutral and will work just as well for the mother, sister, cousin, or wife in your life ;

This is a revamp of my previous post, 50+ Stocking Stuffers for Men. So many people left such great comments and ideas that I thought I would condense them all here so they are easier to read through. There are still some great traditions in the comments if you want to have more ideas.

These small gift ideas are perfect for stocking stuffers, but also for Easter baskets and gift bags too. Most of the ideas on here range from $1-$10.

Looking for Ideas for the Kids? Click HERE!

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Christmas in Review: Gift Giving

I love Christmas. I love getting together with all my crazy family, baking too many sweets, and getting presents for all my loved ones. Every year, however, I think about how much stuff we buy for each other that has no sentimental value and will probably be forgotten before next Christmas has come around and that makes me kind of sad. Why waste so much money on things we don’t need and may only temporarily enjoy? Is the materialistic part of Christmas that important?

I had a wonderful Christmas this year, but next year I plan on doing things a little differently. With plans to buy a house and a baby on the way, we will probably be pinching more pennies than we are right now. Plus, it gets tiring buying gifts for those family members that have everything and can buy themselves whatever their heart may desire. I find it so much more enjoyable to buy gifts for those who don’t get to indulge, those who may not be able to afford those new shoes, and those who enjoy homemade gifts because the know it’s from the heart.

I have a whole year to plan for Christmas 2012 (in baby steps!) and I think I have an idea of what to give to those family members that have everything (and incidentally, tend not to be crafty and don’t appreciate handmade gifts as much).

Instead of spending money on fancy wine or other gifts for those with a bit more expensive tastes, I want to focus on family.

The plan: My goal is to take more pictures of family gatherings and turn it into gifts, whether it be in the form of photo books, agendas, calenders, or some other personalized item. It also makes it easier that we are expecting the first grandbaby on both sides and grandparents love baby pictures! Hello baby picture ornaments.

Anyone else thinking about more personalized gift giving?

 

I’m Dreaming of a Green Christmas – WINNER ANNOUNCED!

And the winner goes to Jess! Thanks for all who participated – new contest coming up tomorrow!

Jess- email me (theliefoflulubelle(at)gmail.com) your address and email so Elk River Naturals can send you the prize!

Today’s post comes from Jamie Quin, the owner of Elk River Naturals. I am pleased to have her stop by my blog AND offer a great giveaway!

If you are anything like me, the holiday season brings a confusing mix of feelings somewhere between pure joy and self loathing guilt. This is surely a time when one should reflect on family, life and love and whatever this season means to you personally, but is it wrong that I can’t help but feel a little bit guilty about the waste that comes along with this season? During the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas, 25% more waste is produced than at any other time of the year. Millions of pounds of wrapping paper, bows, cards, boxes, junk mail and other items ultimately end up in landfills. Christmas can not only take a toll on a person – with gift buying pressure, money worries, navigating through traffic and crowding looking for that perfect gift – but it also takes a toll on the environment. In order to make yourself and those on your Christmas list happy this season, look over these creative examples of how to gift, decorate and dispose green!

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10 Days Until Christmas: Festive Centerpieces

TEN DAYS UNTIL CHRISTMAS. Holy Moly. My list of things to do seems longer now than it did a week ago!

Our Christmas decorations have been up for a couple of weeks now, but I’m still missing a centerpiece for the table (I’m also hosting Christmas Breakfast at my house). Here are some easy centerpieces that still look elegant and festive.

Supplies you may need:

  • Jars
  • Vases of varying sizes
  • Candles
  • Ornaments
  • Cranberries
  • Flowers
  • Pine cones
  • Pine branches/sprigs
  • Ribbon (anyone else LOVE ribbon?)

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15 Day Until Christmas: Wrap Those Gifts!

I love wrapping paper. I bought two rolls of it on clearance last year after Christmas, but there is just so much pretty paper I bought more this year as well. Whoops.

Here are some cute ways to wrap your gifts – other than the typical colored wrapping paper, shiny curling ribbon, and those bows that never stay stuck on.

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