My First ButcherBox Unboxing Event

My First ButcherBox Unboxing Event

This page contains affiliate links. ButcherBox Unboxing

This time of year it seems like it’s almost impossible to eat healthily. At the office, you have a Christmas goodie day with fudge, English toffee, cookies, and donuts. In addition, kids get more and more candy as bribes at school, parties are happening, and you keep getting cookies and chocolate pumpkin bread for gifts. Does that sound familiar? And who can say no!? It’s truly a test of determination to pass on all that addictive sugar and yumminess.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for celebrating and having my own share of traditional recipes. I LOVE all these things, BUT I am trying to limit the unnecessary sugar for myself and the kids this year. Also, it’s gotten me thinking how I can encourage healthier choices for my family once all the holiday cheer and craziness passes.

One of my first steps on this path to healthier eating was to take a look at the meat the family eats. Granted, we don’t eat a lot of meat, but with so many reports and scares out there about meat quality, it’s something I’ve worried about. Also, I’ve been exploring ketogenic recipes (more on that later) that include a lot more meat than I’d been used to eating. Where can I get quality grass-fed beef and other quality meats without completely breaking the bank?

So as an experiment I succumbed to the Black Friday sale and ordered from an online mail order meat company called ButcherBox.

ButcherBox unboxing pin

ButcherBox Unboxing

First of all, you choose your box. You can choose from grass-fed beef, free-range organic chicken, heritage breed pork or customize your own box. It’s sent directly to your front doorstep, insulated and packed in dry ice to ensure frozen solid meat. Then thaw your meat as you need it, and enjoy!

Sounds super-convenient, right? Well, take a look at my ButcherBox unboxing video to see what you get.

Explorer Momma’s ButcherBox Unboxing

In the video I say you’ll get $10 off and free ribeyes if you buy your box through my link; however, ButcherBox has already updated the offer. Sorry for the change! It’s now $20 off your first box and includes free bacon. Click here to check that out.

ButcherBox unboxing bacon

What’s in a regular ButcherBox?

  • 8-11 lbs of meat per box
  • Free from antibiotics and hormones
  • Sourced from farms committed to sustainable practices
  • Delivered to your doorstep on your schedule

ButcherBox unboxing chicken

What was in my ButcherBox Unboxing?

  • Free-range organic chicken breasts
  • Heritage breed pork chops
  • Smoked uncured, sugar-free bacon
  • Ground beef
  • Sirloin steaks
  • Ribeye steaks
  • Strip loin steaks

ButcherBox unboxing ground chicken, beef, ribeyes

This is the list of items in my regular ButcherBox. I did not include the extra items I received as a result of the Black Friday sale.

Pros

On-line to your doorstep convenience

High-quality meat without any antibiotics or hormones

Great flavor. So far I’ve thawed and tried the ground beef, bacon, and strip loin steak, and I’m pleased with everything. I’m obviously not a meat expert, but the meat is juicy and flavorful.

On-line support with recipes and cooking tips

Comparable price to high-quality local store meat

ButcherBox unboxing pork

Cons

Is the box enough to last an entire month for your family?

If your family eats a lot of meat then probably not. However, for my family of four, it is plenty to last the month because we don’t eat a lot of meat in general.

I haven’t had this problem, but some folks online have reported the bags leaking as they thawed them in their fridges. I’ve thawed three items so far and have not run into this problem at all so can’t really consider it a con. If you’re worried, and I do this anyway, always thaw your meat on a plate in your fridge.

ButcherBox unboxing ground beef

How do I get my Butcherbox?

If you want to try out your own ButcherBox, click on the link below. If you use my link you’ll get $20 off your first ButcherBox as well as free bacon! Score!

Click here to order your own ButcherBox.

How will you be healthier in the New Year?

Like I said, this is my first step to healthier eating for my family in New Year. For myself, I’m already cutting out sugar and going low-carb with a ketogenic diet, but that doesn’t always work for our entire family. I’ll be exploring recipes, quality food, and fun ways to get the kids to be healthy, especially for the five-year-old who’s become a stubborn goofy goose (his words) stuck in his ways!

Take care of yourself, and let’s have an awesome New Year!

 

What are your goals for healthier eating in the New Year? Share them in the comments!

Need some ideas to implement today?

Simple, actionable tips to get your kids to eat more healthy. Click below to check it out!

Kids to eat healthy feature

Free Printable French Valentine Cards

Free Printable French Valentine Cards

This page contains affiliate links. Printable French Valentine Cards

Hearts, flowers, red, and pink! Valentine time of year is just around the corner once again. The question is, will you be prepared? Are you like me and in search of a set of fun, different, and cheap (yes, I said it!) Valentines? Do you need something to pass around to kid school friends, family, your Zumba group, and make them smile? If that’s the case, you’re in luck because you can download your own FREE printable French Valentine cards below. French, because, why not? Does one need a reason to speak in French? Pas du tout! It’s different, fun, and the language of love!

Scroll down to download your own free printable French Valentine Cards.

or Pin it for later!

Printable French Valentine Cards pin

My favorite history of Valentine’s Day story

As far as I know, there are at least 3 different Valentines or Valentiniuses the holiday could be named after. My favorite legend of the holiday centers around a certain priest way back during the height of Roman power. At this point in history, Christians were being persecuted, thrown into prisons, beaten, tortured, and generally treated badly.

According to legend, Valentine helped many Christians escape the horrible prisons and was himself captured for his aid. As a result, our hero Valentine was thrown into one of these same prisons. Under the circumstances, a bit of luck, or the grace of God, favored our Valentine. In amongst the usual torture and abuse, the jailer’s daughter visited the good Valentine. Her visits brought Valentine a ray of light, and he soon fell in love with her.

Printable French Valentine cards book

Tragically, Valentine was sentenced to death, the pleas of the jailer’s daughter going unattended. Before his execution, our hero penned a love poem and letter to his love and signed it, “From Your Valentine”. This became the basis for Valentine’s Day letters and greetings throughout the Middle Ages and until this very day.

Printable French Valentine Cards, macarons

Printable French Valentine cards without candy

A little pet peeve I have about Valentine’s Day when it comes to kids’ Valentines, is that it’s EXPECTED to put candy with every single one! Kids are bribed with candy at school, at offices, at my own house, and just have way more sugar than is healthy. Therefore, I like to do something fun for holidays like Valentine’s Day and Halloween that does not contain sugar.

Individual Valentine card

First, get some simple cellophane bags from Target or another store (or order them on Amazon here). Then, print out your printable French Valentine cards on card stock. Place one card in each bag along with a small gift for Valentine’s Day. Last but not least, tie the top of the bag with a cute red ribbon, and you’re done!

 

Printable Valentine cards preview pin

Small charms or gifts to go in your Valentine bag:

Do you need some gift bags, Eiffel Tower charms, or maybe Eiffel Tower magnets?

Or who wouldn’t like to receive a squeezable heart stress ball, vintage style Paris bookmark, or heart erasers?

Challenge yourself to think outside the candy box and have fun with it! Do your kids’ friends like a certain game, toy, or love France? What would be fun for your family members and friends?

What do you get with your printable French Valentine cards?

Just in case you are not a native French speaker, I’ve included a vocabulary list with English translation. These are great for kids in French classes or anyone who has a love for all things French. Take a look below, and imagine yourself in front of the Eiffel Tower. Ah, Paris…

Printable French Valentine cards preview vocabulary

Printable French Valentine cards

In today’s culture, walk into a grocery store or really almost anywhere after Christmas. What will you see? You’ll be bombarded with red hearts, Hallmark cards, chocolates, flowers, jewelry, and more to buy the perfect gift for your special someone…and all your closest acquaintances. If you love it or not, why not make it fun for kids and friends alike? Give them a Valentine and a little lesson in that flowing language of love…French! C’est magnifique!

Do you have any other fun traditions for Valentine’s Day you do with your kids? Share them in the comments below!

Printable French Valentine Cards, Eiffel Tower

Do you need a simple Valentine craft?

Kids' Valentine craft feature

My Cozy Christmas Books: A List

My Cozy Christmas Books: A List

This page contains affiliate links. Cozy Christmas books

There’s not a lot I like more than a good book at Christmas. Ideally, I have a big fluffy chair between the window to watch the snow fall and the burning logs of the fireplace. On the small table near my chair, I have a mug of tea or coffee. Oh, and I almost forgot, I’m breathing in the fir tree scent from the fresh Christmas tree (or the essential oils diffuser!). Add a good cozy Christmas book to all that, and I’m in heaven.

I have quite a few Christmas books on my stand right now, and I can’t wait to dive in! Some of them are oldies but goodies. Then, a few are brand new I’m super-excited to experience for the first time. One is even a Christmas novella from a very talented lady I’ve known most of my life and is the beginning of a new series for her. Let’s dive in, shall we?!

Christmas Books for Adults pin

I hope you too can pick up some of these Christmas books (or others!) to give as gifts or enjoy yourself this holiday season!

My holiday book list: Christmas books

Last Christmas in Paris Last Christmas in Paris

by Hazel Gaynor and Heather Webb

First of all, this book is marketed incredibly well. Who can pass up the cover with a girl walking towards the Eiffel Tower in a bright red coat and the words Last Christmas in Paris and A Novel of World War I over her? Truly, I am the ideal target reader as a history buff and former French teacher. As are many others, I’m naturally drawn to anything Paris, and World War I is a fascinating time period to explore. Good characters and the emotional upheaval of the time make for an absorbing read.

Second, I’ve read several of Hazel Gaynor’s previous books and love her writing style and delicate description. It seems to place you in the scene with all five of your senses alert and aware of the situation. I’ve not read Heather Webb before but am already intrigued by the setting, time period, and style of this book. Much of the book is told in letters back and forth between Thomas Hardy on the front line in France and Evie Elliott in a quiet suburb of London.

Pick up your copy from Amazon today by clicking here: Last Christmas in Paris.

Christmas at CarntonChristmas at Carnton

by Tamera Alexander

If you read much Christian fiction you will probably recognize the name, Tamera Alexander. Because I’ve read most of her books, I know I can always count on her to give me an uplifting, compelling story. Her characters speak from the heart, and I love the historical world she paints. (Also, as my younger self I used to babysit her children and know first-hand what a fun and amazing family they are!) This Christmas she takes us to Civil War-torn Nashville and the Carnton Plantation.

“Amid war and the fading dream of the Confederacy, a wounded soldier and a destitute widow discover the true meaning of Christmas – and sacrificial love.”

Around Christmas, this is just the kind of story I like to indulge in by the fire with my steaming mug of tea. However, I feel I have to warn you. I’ve found I don’t like to put down Tamera Alexander’s books and end up reading through the night or don’t get anything at all done until all the pages have been turned. Definitely, it’s a heart-warming addition to a list of Christmas books!

Spoil yourself and order it now on Amazon by clicking here: Christmas at Carnton.

***Update! I finished Christmas at Carnton and find myself eagerly awaiting the next book in the series! If you have any interest in the Civil War era, in Tennesee especially, this is the book for you! This inspiring story was well-told with fascinating characters and locations. I highly recommend it for yourself or as a gift for a friend. Now, I’m journeying to Paris during World War I with Last Christmas in Paris. I’ll post an update about it soon!

Greenglass HouseGreenglass House

by Kate Milford

I have a confession to make. I love mysteries. Generally English mysteries in a big house and a good who-dun-it. Greenglass House is juvenile fiction, but I’m excited to have it on my list so I can then pass it off to my daughter. Double-win!

I don’t know about you, but I usually like to preview the books she reads (although she’s getting too fast for me!). This is not to spy on her and be controlling, but more a way to be a part of her life. Because I love books so much, it is awesome to be able to discuss them with my 9-year-old daughter and watch her face light up with excitement. Of course, I want to be a part of that and know where the excitement is coming from.

So here in Greenglass House, we have a mystery with 12-year-old (the innkeeper’s adopted son). It’s wintertime, and he lives in the spooky smuggler’s inn. Secretive guests start arriving during this normally quiet period for the inn, and the cook’s daughter Meddy teams up with Milo to solve the mystery of Greenglass House. Why are things going missing? Who are all these people in conflict? They must find the secret of the house and learn about themselves at the same time. Awesome.

Order it here on Amazon: Greenglass House

Hercule Poirot's ChristmasHercule Poirot’s Christmas

by Agatha Christie

Hercule Poirot. What does the name mean to you? Funnily for me, my first thought is of the fastidious detective’s famous mustache. This is the ultimate Christmas cozy mystery because we find the great detective in a family mansion investigating what? A murder of course. Was it the random burglar? The butler perhaps? Or do we dig deeper into the animosities between the family members gathered for the “merry” holiday season?

I love it. There’s a reason Agatha Christie mysteries have sold over a billion copies in English and another billion in other languages. I really can’t resist a good mystery, so take it from me. Another one for a list of great Christmas books. Get yours today!

To get it on Amazon click here: Hercule Poirot’s Christmas

The Sibyl in Her GraveThe Sibyl in Her Grave

by Sarah Caudwell

Sarah Caudwell is fabulous. Who else could make English tax law a comedy in an old English village with a murder mystery? It sounds completely off, but it is hysterical. This is one of those books I’ve read many times and just happens to take place during the Christmas season. The Sibyl in Her Grave is one of those witty, crazy books that somehow makes complete sense, and I find myself laughing out loud every other page no matter how many times I read it.

A huge part of this book is the great cast of characters. Professor Hilary Tamar (an Oxford don) is called upon by her friend Julia at Lincoln’s Inn to help her aunt with a tax problem. Aunt Regina and her friends have pooled their resources to invest in equities and made off extremely well. Now the tax man’s come calling, and the money’s all been spent!

Add to that a psychic counselor Isabella del Camino (the Sibyl) who’s moved into the rectory of the village and plowed down a cherished garden. She also keeps an aviary of ravens and has offended everyone in the village. So what happens? Spoiler: She ends up found murdered of course.

Chaos, fun, and tax law intertwine to make a great story. Reading my description it doesn’t do it justice at all. There’s too much to the story and awesome character quirks, and it’s a fun place to escape to more craziness than your own holiday household.

Get this one here on Amazon: The Sibyl in Her Grave

Mr. Dickens and His CarolMr. Dickens and His Carol

by Samantha Silva

Last but not least, Mr. Dickens and His Carol. Every Christmas my family watches various versions of what’s probably the most famous Christmas tale ever written, “A Christmas Carol”. Have you ever wondered about the man who wrote it? Was he really hating Christmas, depressed by the failure of his last book, in writer’s block, and envisioning the poorhouse? What inspired him to write this classic Christmas story?

Mr. Dickens and His Carol is a charming, comic, and ultimately poignant story about the creation of the most famous Christmas tale ever written. It’s as foggy and haunted and redemptive as the original; it’s all heart, and I read it in a couple of ebullient, Christmassy gulps.”

-Anthony Doerr (author of All the Light We Cannot Seeanother fabulous book)

Purchase your own copy to get started on right away! Click to order on Amazon here: Mr. Dickens and His Carol.

 

Holiday reading

Create a new Christmas books tradition

Did you know they have an amazing holiday in Iceland called the “Jolabokaflod”? It’s translated as the “Yule Book Flood” and the gist of it is you search for the months before Christmas Eve to find the perfect book for family members and everyone opens up books on Christmas Eve. Isn’t that perfect?! It gets better. The tradition is that everyone then gets to read their books late into the night, or all night, all while eating CHOCOLATE!!

Yes, they do this every year, and it may be my new favorite holiday! Why not try it out for yourself and maybe even select a few books from my list of cozy Christmas books? Happy reading!

Food Allergy Freedom Holiday Recipes

Food Allergy Freedom Holiday Recipes

This page contains affiliate links. Food allergy freedom holiday recipes

Why should everyone else have all the fun at holiday gatherings?

Everyone around you gets to eat without questioning the hostess about every ingredient and if you get to eat anything, well, it’s probably the least exciting dish out of the bunch.

I totally know how that feels.

My mother can’t eat gluten, and my daughter is deathly allergic to tree nuts. I’ve grown to dread seeing that letdown face of my daughter’s when she asks, “Does it have nuts?” and the answer is, “Oh, I’m sorry honey, it was made in a facility with nuts.” Or “Yes, I’m afraid it has walnuts dear.”

She’s great about asking and checking labels, but it’s hard when so many people don’t realize how serious a food allergy actually is. The open bowl of cashews at a party can lead to anaphylactic shock and things we don’t want to think about.

Then I myself also forget about my mother’s inability to eat gluten. I’ll make a salad for a party, throw in some pasta, and then kick myself because, yes, that’s gluten too!

Food allergy freedom pin

But still, it’s the holidays!

I want the whole family to enjoy them, be able to eat #alltheyummythings (and I especially don’t want my daughter to have to miss out on special foods).

If you’re struggling with food allergies or dietary restrictions, the folks at Ultimate Bundles have put together a bundle just for you (and for the holidays!).

It’s called the Food Allergy Freedom Bundle. And it’s full of luscious recipes, special enough for your celebrations and parties, but lovingly created for those with food allergies or specific dietary needs.

This collection contains 9 cookbooks that will make sure everybody can satisfy their sweet (or savory) tooth this season (but without hives, digestive issues, or trips to the emergency room).

Whether you’re in the mood for Bread Pudding Cakes with “Bourbon” Vanilla Sauce, Savory Sweet Potato Bake, Chocolate Cupcakes with Pumpkin Spice Frosting, Spiced Pear Anise Cranberry Quick Bread, Pomegranate Mimosas, or any of the other 280 recipes in this bundle, you’ll be sure to create a holiday spread that will make special memories.

Here’s where it gets really crazy…

Altogether, these eCookbooks are worth $110. But I have a question for you: would you like to buy them at a discount?

If your answer is yes, then I have one more question…

How much of a discount do you want?

That’s the beauty of this Food Allergy Freedom Bundle. Not only do you have the freedom to eat food that’s allergy-friendly, you also have the freedom to pay what you want!

This is how it works:

  • Visit their website, take a quick look at all the goodness that comes in this package, decide how much you want to spend, and then click the turquoise “Pay what I want!” button to go through their simple and secure 3-step checkout process.
  • You’ll receive an email with a login to their online access portal, where you’ll begin downloading your eBooks.
  • Use their Getting Started Guide to pick the topic you want to tackle first and start making delicious, allergy-free meals!

The most important detail, though, is that this bundle is available for just 48 hours!

After Tuesday night, November 14th, the sale ends and you’d have to buy all of these products individually.

It’s even backed by a 30-day full money-back happiness guarantee, so you can make sure it’s right for you.

The holiday season is full of food, friends, and family. No one needs to feel excluded with these recipes that are safe (and delicious) for everyone!

Get what you need to have delicious food this holiday season (without the allergens that make you sick).

Learn more or get your bundle HERE.

(Psst… the bundle goes away at 11:59 pm Eastern on Tuesday, November 14th, so don’t wait!)

What’s in the Food Allergy Freedom Bundle? I’m glad you asked because I’m super-excited about it!

  • Allergy-free Meal Plan by Adrienne Urban ($14.00)
  • Baker’s Dozen Holidays Quick Breads Coconut Flour Baked Goods Volume 3 by Starlene Stewart ($7.99)
  • Beyond the Cereal Box by Daniel & Haley Stewart ($6.99)
  • Candy Making Without Corn Syrup by Cara Comini ($12.99)
  • Nourishing Holiday by Jaclyn Harwell ($24.97)
  • Paleo Vegan Sweets & Treats: 30+ Healthy Paleo Desserts Free of Grains, Dairy & Eggs by Hannah Healy ($9.99)
  • Thanksgiving in the Slow Cooker: 32 Gluten-Free Recipes and Complete Planning Guide for a Stress-Free Holiday! by Stephanie O’Dea ($7.99)
  • The Allergy-Free Holiday Table: Top 8 Allergen-Free Cakes, Cookies, Pies, Candies, and More! by Amanda Torres ($19.95)
  • Vegan Holiday Treats by Kelly Roenicke ($6.99)
  • PLUS get the Allergy-Free Cooking Masterclass by Wardeh ‘Wardee’ Harmon ($40.00) when you spend $20 or more

Food Allergy Freedom Bundle

Are you flying for the holidays?

Check out these nut-free snacks for a long-haul flight here!

Long-Haul Flight Snacks

Disclaimer:

This blog does not constitute medical advice. I am not a healthcare professional. Please consult your doctor before making any dietary changes.

Be sure to read the labels on any ingredients suggested. Sometimes manufacturers change ingredients, so please double check that the product is safe for your diet. If you are not sure that a recipe is safe for you or your family, I urge you to consult with your healthcare provider.

Kids’ DIY Christmas Tree Ornament

Kids’ DIY Christmas Tree Ornament

This page contains affiliate links. Kids’ DIY Christmas Tree  Ornament

Did you know according to the Guinness Book of World Records, “White Christmas” by Bing Crosby is the all-time best-selling Christmas/holiday single in the United States? Not only that, but they report, it’s also the best-selling single of all time. Moreover, it has estimated sales in excess of 50 million copies worldwide. Why am I telling you this? Well, it snowed here a couple of days ago so I succumbed to the pleas of my daughter to play some Christmas music. There’s just something about the tones of Bing and “White Christmas” to put me in that joyful Christmas mood.

Before you know it we’ll all dive into Christmas baking, crafting, decorating, and spreading of holiday cheer. I can’t wait!

Christmas Craft Time

Okay, I admit, my kids and I started out a little early this year making some Christmas tree ornaments. I wanted a project using only items I already had around the house so I didn’t have to make a special trip to Michael’s or Hobby Lobby or somewhere (I tend to spend lots of money at such places). Therefore, somewhere in my brain came up with a memory of a craft I did long ago in Girl Scouts. A craft made with simple, everyday items, which come together to make a nice ornament for the Christmas tree.

Can I tell you a little secret? What else do I like this project? Well, it occupies the children for quite awhile as they choose their Christmas card picture, glue on their toothpicks, and add decorations and the finishing touches. A kids’ DIY Christmas tree ornament.

Yes, I’ll say it. Even with the help they’ll need, you’ll have at least 15 minutes of free time. Fifteen minutes can be a lot to get your own tasks done. Namely, you can wrap three presents, prep dinner, or sit and have a mug of tea. Think about those long 2 weeks (or more!) off of school and all the things you’ll need to occupy the kids. To be sure, this is a fun, easy to set up craft the kids will be proud to put on the tree. Doesn’t that sound fabulous?

So give it a go. It can’t hurt can it? Do you use those toothpicks up in the cabinet for anything but testing the doneness of cakes? Therefore, make an awesome kids’ DIY Christmas tree ornament today!

Or you can always Pin it for later here.

Kids’ DIY Christmas Tree Ornament

Kids' DIY Christmas Tree Ornament pin

First, gather your supplies. You’ll need:

Kids' DIY Christmas Tree Ornament supplies

Second, select the Christmas card and portion of it you would like to frame with toothpicks for the ornament. I suggest using a plastic plate to keep all the supplies from rolling away or hit by little elbows onto the floor. Then place one layer of toothpicks crossing each other around the portion of the card you wish to frame. You can use the little house shape I use on the cardinal ornament, a simple square, a star, or whatever your creative minds think up. Just be sure the toothpicks cross so you can glue them together.

Kids' DIY Christmas Tree Ornament card

Third, trace and cut out the shape from the Christmas card. I usually test the toothpicks at this point to make sure they fit where they’re supposed to. Trim the cutout as needed.

Kids' DIY Christmas Tree Ornament, card cutout

Toothpick time!

Fourth, start gluing your toothpicks. For the first layer I glue the entire toothpick to anchor the toothpicks to the card piece. One at a time glue them all the way around your shape. This takes some patience, but if they’re interested, kids get the hang of it pretty quickly.

Kids' DIY Christmas Tree Ornament toothpicks start

For the last toothpick in the first layer, put a dot of glue on each toothpick it crosses and place the toothpick. As much as I’d like to use a glue stick for this project, we tried, but they just wouldn’t hold together. Regular or school glue is better for the craft, and be assured, it will drip. If you have a perfectionist like my daughter reassure them it’s fine. It happens. It will dry clear.

Kids' DIY Christmas Tree Ornament toothpicks 1

Next, go around the shape adding a second layer of toothpicks. These next steps can take some patience and time, but kids get incredibly excited when it’s finished and set to dry. Again, it may not be perfect or get knocked over. Don’t be discouraged! You can always piece it back together again!

Kids' DIY Christmas Tree Ornament, glue bottle

Slow and steady

Continue to add rows of toothpicks to your desired height for the frame. Personally, I like to do five layers of toothpicks, but it’s up to you and your creative kids. When the frame is built up, leave it to dry overnight or for several hours.

Kids' DIY Christmas Tree Ornament closeup finished toothpicks

Then, cut a piece of yarn or ribbon about 8-10 inches long to make the tree hanger.

Kids' DIY Christmas Tree Ornament yarn

Thread it through the toothpick layers near the base (card).

Kids' DIY Christmas Tree Ornament, yarn threaded

After that’s complete you can tie the hanger and decorate! We used what we had in the house so there’s quite a mix of things. Together with glitter and bells, we used small colored puffballs, greenery from the tree outside, and more. Be creative! Use whatever you have or make that trip to the store and get some fun sparkly decorations. There you have it! An awesome kids’ DIY Christmas tree ornament.

Kids' DIY Christmas Tree Ornaments

A challenge for you

As a kid, I remember simple projects like this and just loving them. It was part of the holiday season to make and bake and give things away. Every year a group a group from our church would go sing Christmas carols for local nursing and retirement homes. We always brought gifts to share with the residents, and handmade ornaments like this were always well-received.

I challenge you. Try out this kids’ DIY Christmas tree ornament and make a few extras to give away. Furthermore, take them to a neighbor, a retirement home, or a friend and let the kids experience the joy of giving their time and a hand-made gift to someone who truly appreciates it. And listen to some Bing Crosby while you’re at it.

Happy Christmas crafting!

 

 

 

Need more awesome activities for kids?

7 Awesome Activities to beat the winter blues, feature

Mom Gift Ideas: The Busy Mom Gift Guide

Mom Gift Ideas: The Busy Mom Gift Guide

This page contains affiliate links. For full disclosure click hereMom gift ideas

Are you in last minute panic mode, early and informed mode, or really just have no idea what to get the mom in your life? It could be a mom friend, your own mom, the mom you drew for the secret Santa exchange at work. This is the ultimate list of mom gift ideas for the busy mom in your life. Look through the list, click on the picture, and buy it on Amazon or Amazon Prime and BOOM! you’re done!

I admit I’m a little addicted to Amazon Prime. As a matter of fact, I dread going into stores and wasting time. Even on the rare occasion I get to go by myself without the children, I find myself annoyed by having to search shelves and not finding what I need. Then you head to multiple stores only to waste the precious time sans enfants. 

Yes, in effect, I’m completely spoiled. I order things online, and they are at my doorstep in two days without the hassle of people, time-wasting, and stores. Did you know you can even order groceries online? It’s rather fabulous, and without fail, my King Soopers Clicklist is submitted Sunday night. Then Monday morning the helpful store employee loads everything into the back of my car I ordered the night before. But I digress…back to Mom gift ideas!

What in the world can you get for the busy mom in your life?

Searching for mom gift ideas is not always the easiest. You want to pick out something thoughtful, useful, or from the heart. Unfortunately, we then often put it off until the last minute and go into panic mode. Or, I’ve even gone the opposite way and ordered everything super-early, but got everyone nearly the same thing for Christmas.

If you go through the list you’ll find sections titled Health and Wellness, Kitchen, Office, Bath, and Entertainment. There are so many other possibilities, but it’s a good start to get those creative juices flowing. Moreover, this list is a big part of what I like, what I’d like (hint, hint), and what I’ve gotten great use out of. I’ve labeled this a mom gift guide for busy moms, but that can include working moms, stay at home moms, and work at home moms. I’ve been in all three roles, and let me tell you I always think one of the others is much easier than the role I’m in currently. Let’s just say they all have their unique challenges.

Mom Gift Ideas pin

Busy Mom Gift Ideas: The Ultimate Guide

(Not ready to buy that gift yet? Click here to Pin our handy guide for later reference!)

Health and Wellness

        

Glass water bottle, Zen head massager, Zen energy pro massage balls,

 

Essential oil diffuser, essential oils, a yoga mat

or

a gym membership or training sessions (only if you know the mom well and know it’s something they’d like and not be offended by)

Health for Momma can often be incredibly neglected as others are put first. When Mom is sick does she ever really to rest and spend a couple of days in bed? Of course not. She still has to get the kids fed, to school or daily activities, review and sign the planner, finish the Halloween pumpkins, do the laundry, etc. Therefore, pamper Mom a bit with one of these health-related gifts.

By the way, can I tell you how amazing the Zen head massager is? Out of all the Mom gift ideas, it’s completely unique, and a fun inexpensive gift. It’s also one of the most relaxing, fabulous things I’ve been given in a long time. You really have to use it to believe me, but it massages your head with its tiny metal arms. It’s delightful.

Kitchen

  

Stainless steel drinking straws, silicone spatula set, Spiralizer 5-blade vegetable slicer,

 

Vitamix high-speed blender, Belgian waffle maker, hand immersion blender

   

Silicone stretch lids, silicone baking cups, ice cream maker

Have you heard of zoodles? Zoodles are spiraled noodles made from a zucchini, and they seem to be in every recipe I’ve been wanting to try lately. Healthy, gluten-free, low-carb, they can be seasoned and sound about perfect. If my family is reading this, buy me a spiralizer for Christmas (shameless request).

If you want to go all out a high-speed blender is an awesome idea. I use mine for smoothies, soups, dressings, vegetable chopping, the list goes on. In fact, I don’t know what I’d do without it.

On the smaller side, I’m in love with my metal straws for daily smoothies, and for the child who thinks they HAVE to have a straw in every cup they drink liquid in throughout the day. Eliminate waste and reuse these babies daily. Also, I use these silicone stretch lids all the time over half-empty cans of tomato sauce, bowls, and even over a piece of fruit if I cut it in half. Do you need half an orange? Cut it in half and stick one of these around the open portion, and throw it in the fridge. Love it. 

Office

    

Exercise stability ball (use as a desk chair), Pilot precise colored pens, daily planner
 

Fun eyeglasses holder, Bluetooth speaker, Amazon Echo Dot (Alexa)

  

Wood carving elephant pencil holder, elephant paper clips, seize the day octopus mug

If Mom works at home or not, she always needs a desk space area for the million tasks that need doing. Have you ever thought about an exercise ball for an office chair? Check this out! Truly, I love the eyeglasses holder and have given different versions of it to several members of my family. Also, a Bluetooth speaker and an Alexa Echo Dot bring your own music and fun to a space. Make Mom’s office an awesome, comfortable space with some of these awesome mom gift ideas!

Bath

         

Dead Sea bath salts, Santa Monica Soap Co. – lavender, luxury bathroom towel set

The Body Shop British Rose body butter, OPI nail polish, manicure set

Ah, the bath. This is a go-to for many seekers of Mom gift ideas. If you do choose the bath route, be intentional and select Mom’s favorites or something you’d specifically think she’d like. Personally, I absolutely love classic lavender and rose so those are often my favorite choices for soaps and lotions. Also, who doesn’t love a fun new OPI nail polish color every now and then? 

Entertainment

             

A Curious BeginningMistbornQuick & Easy Ketogenic CookingAmazon gift card

For me, you can never go wrong with books. However, you know the mom in your life so select a book you know she would like. Or, if you have no idea you can always go for an Amazon gift card. A Curious Beginning is a witty and fun Victorian mystery, an easy read for the mom who needs a break. Then, we have Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson, a much more involved fantasy read which I love. Possibly, if you don’t want to go with a novel, you could try a cookbook. I’m new to ketogenic cooking so Maria Emmerich’s books are fabulous, but again, tailor your cookbook pick to Mom.

There are all sorts of other Mom gift ideas you can throw in here, but I especially like the idea of a theatre production or concert tickets. If you partner tickets to a show with an arranged babysitter you will score big points and treat Mom to a well-deserved night out. Also, for music at home, you could get a subscription to Pandora or Amazon Music Unlimited. Be creative!

Buy that gift for Mom now!

My dear reader, I hope I’ve made you think and gotten some good Mom gift ideas! Bonus points to you if you completed your shopping with a few quick clicks. Score! Now think of all the time you have because you didn’t go shopping to 5 stores looking for the elusive ideal Mom gift.

However, most important of all is that you made the mom in your life feel special and excited about their new gift whether it be for Christmas, birthday, or just because she deserves it. Sometimes those surprise gifts are the best kind. Good luck in your search, and happy shopping!

Busy Mom Gift Guide

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