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5 Great Products and Tips to Make This Thanksgiving Extra Fun and Easy!

This post is sponsored by BabbleBoxx.com all opinions are my own.

I can’t believe Thanksgiving is this week!  This year is certainly flying by, but I’m excited to share some great products and tips to make this Thanksgiving extra fun.

Let someone else take care of the centerpiece this year, and let it double as a dessert!  Order one of these awesome fall arrangements from Edible Arrangements.  I love sending Edible Arrangements as a way to say thank you or for special occasions like birthdays, but ordering one as a centerpiece for my family is a great way to cross some decorating off my to-do list and I get to enjoy the beautiful yumminess!  They can be ordered up till 11/22, the day before Thanksgiving!


We received the Salted Caramel Harvest Bouquet™ with Orange Swizzle Berries® which includes Salted caramel apple wedges, Chocolate dipped strawberries with festive orange Swizzle®, Playful pineapple leaves, Chocolate covered pineapple “apple”, and additional grapes, strawberries, cantaloupe in a keepsake pumpkin container that can be used again.

You can use one of these awesome coupon codes to save this holiday season:
Code: THANK17
$10 OFF $39+ ($49 for CA) valid 11/13 – 11/22, unlimited use, for fulfillment any time.
Code: FEAST
$20 OFF $99+, valid 11/13-11/22, unlimited use, fulfillment any time.

Skip the dirty dishes and get some canned beverages everyone will love.   Sipp Sparkling Organics has an amazing line of refreshing sparkling beverages that everyone in your party is sure to love.  I received a couple of these to try, and immediately went out and purchased more for myself, they are so delicious!  There are 6 flavors to select from and these are delicious chilled on their own or mixed with other juices or cocktails.  Created with a blend of fruits, herbs and agave into a lightly sweetened sparkling beverage.

For alcoholic beverages, choose a signature beverage or two for the day, to keep the bar stocked up easily.  Clean Cocktails for the Modern Mixologist from Blue Barn Publishing has countless ideas for excellent low calorie cocktails.  Holistic health coaches Beth Ritter Nydick and Tara Roscioli bring a clean-living mindset to craft mixology. Their recipes use low-calorie spirits, fresh juices, clean sweeteners like honey and maple syrup, and anti-inflammatory spices.  Plus many of the recipes have pitcher sizes, which is perfect for holiday entertaining!  I can’t wait to create the Strawberry Limeade for my family and friends, this is one of my favorite cocktails ever!

Don’t forget your four legged family members!  Get them some extra yummy and nutritious snacks from Solid Gold!  Just in time for Thanksgiving, Solid Gold has came out with a new line of cat and dog treats featuring the flavors of your holiday dinner.  Brady loved these superfood chewy dog treats that combine flavors of turkey, sweet potatoes, and cinnamon!  They deliver a texture, smell, and taste in nutrient dense reward for dogs of all sizes.  Brady has been eating these up, and it looks like we found his new favorite treat.

Put the giving back in Thanksgiving with Petlanthropy.org a unique way to help animals in need!  The Petlanthropy Foundation was founded with only one goal, to help give all homeless cats and dogs a loving forever home.  This is a great cause to donate to during the holiday season, and all year long.

 

All these products awed certain to help you entertain your guests with ease, so that you can focus on giving thanks, making memories, and gathering around the dinner table!

5 Tips for Getting a Better Night’s Sleep as a Mom!

Thank you to Nectar for providing a Nectar Mattress to facilitate this post. All opinions shared are my own. 

My oldest child is 12, so that means I haven’t had a full night sleep in over 12 years.  People talk about how moms are sleep deprived during the infant and toddler stages of motherhood, but let’s get real for a moment, once you become a mother that deep “not a care in the world” sleep is pretty much gone forever.  Whether your waking up to check on your school aged kids in the middle of the night, up late finishing some last-minute project, or waiting up worried about your teenagers, your sleep pattern is changed forever once you become a mom.

That is why I want every moment that I am in bed resting to be the most comfortable and relaxing possible.  Waisted sleep time spent tossing and turning leaves us exhausted and cranky the next day.  I have come up with a handful of ways to help me fall asleep and stay asleep when once I have tucked in all my little blessings.

Tips for Falling Asleep and Staying Asleep

Get your bedroom in check!  For a long time, I had my work desk in my room, which made me constantly think about projects that were due.  Also, because we were tight on space, my kids would invade my room as an extra movie spot which led to clutter and messes.  Who wants to sleep surrounded by DVD cases, empty cups, and piles of toys? Not most moms.  Once I took a day to fully declutter my bedroom, it had an instant impact on my sleep.  I moved the work area out and made up a rule about kids only being aloud in mommy and daddy’s room if they were sick, needed to talk with us privately, or with special permission (because I know my cuddling years are coming to an end soon with my 8-year-old twins and there are days I just need to say ok, climb in).  My bedroom is now one of my favorite rooms in the house, it is my own beautiful and relaxing space.

Get the Right Mattress!  For years I slept on an old uncomfortable mattress and wondered why I wasn’t getting a great night’s sleep.  A great night’s sleep requires a great mattress!  For us, that mattress is the NECTAR memory foam mattress.

It was delivered to us quickly in a blue shipping bag, with a duffle like bag inside to carry the mattress easily.  Once we opened the duffle bag we cut off the plastic protection and unrolled the mattress, and then let it sit for a couple hours to expand, it even came with 2 memory foam pillows!  Once the bed was unpacked and set up, I was floored by the high quality!  I have used “bed in a box” type mattresses before and have never been impressed, till now!  The NECTAR bed is beautiful, the quilting on both the mattress and the pillows is visually appealing while the mattress itself is firm and so comfortable.

The NECTAR mattress is healthier to sleep on, firmer for support, softer for rest, and a little bouncier than other memory foam mattresses.

 

Features:

Gel Memory Foam – Delivering weight distribution and pressure relief.

Sleep Cool – The top layer of quilted memory foam stimulates airflow.  This prevents over heating and keeps you comfortable as you sleep.  Plus, it keeps out dust mites.

Bed Bug Resistant!

Easy and Free Delivery!

Not sure about buying a mattress online?  No problem, A good mattress manufacturer, like The Nectar Sleep Mattress, offers peace of mind with a 365-day sleep trial, forever guarantee, and free returns!

Learn more about The NECTAR Mattress here!

Check on the Kids, Check on the House, Then have a Cup of Tea!  The kids are in bed, and your exhausted so you shut off the lights and jump into bed, only to wake up an hour later to check to see if the door is locked or check on the kids.  I did this all the time!  Now I make a round during my nighttime routine, I check on each of the kids and make sure they are sound asleep and tucked in.  Then I check on the house, make sure the door is locked and the lights are off, then I sit and have a glass of tea to unwind from the day.  Mothers worry, it’s what we do, so by making the rounds and checking on everyone before I head to my bedroom, I’m more likely to stay in bed all night.  Plus, sitting for a few moments with my tea helps me sort out anything still on my mind from the day.

Stretch out your Body!  You’ve bent over a hundred times throughout the day to pick up toys, give kisses, and tie shoes.  You’ve stood at the sink, sat at the computer, and carried 20 bags of groceries in to avoid making a second trip.  Your muscles are undoubtedly tight and stressed, give them a good stretch before bed.  Pick a few yoga poses to stretch out any aches and pains and your body will thank you.

Take Some Deep Breaths and Smell the Lavender!  Once your room is set, you bed is comfy, the house is checked, and your body is stretched, it’s time to hit the pillows.  The scent of lavender had a calming and relaxing effect on the body, and studies have shown it helps improve sleep.  I add a few drops of a natural lavender oil to a cup by my bed, and the breath and out deep and slowly.  This typically helps me fall asleep within minutes of getting into bed.

These are my simple and effective tips for getting some good sleep in throughout motherhood.

What helps you sleep?

6 Tailgating Made Simple Tips

This post was sponsored by Heluva Good! as part of an Ambassador Program and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.

It’s football season, and that means tailgating time!  Tailgating to me is the best part of attending an NFL game.  You get to pull into a parking lot with all your friends, eat great food, play games, relax, and have fun, while you wait for game time.

We went to the Buccaneers vs. Patriots game last week, and it was one for the books!  Amazing memories, great game, and lots of fun.  At the end of the night, I had myself convinced I “needed” season tickets.  Unfortunately, my hubby squashed that idea, with the logical response that my family isn’t in town often enough for us to tailgate that often. 

Tailgating can be fun whether you have a full over the top set up, or just a chair and a grill.  The atmosphere is what makes it so much fun, but I have a few tips that will make you afternoon at the game go smoother.

Tailgating Made Easy Tips

Freeze all your bottled water, it will keep your food and cocktails cold without having to take up precious cooler space with ice.

Bring hand sanitizer, usually the only bathrooms around are porta pottys.  Porta pottys and a table full of food doesn’t sound like a great idea, keep hand sanitizer on the table.

Put your tickets in your glove box, you’ll be walking around and having fun for hours outside, the last thing you want to do is drop your tickets in the middle of a parking lot somewhere.

Bring a big plastic tub to bring all your dirty dishes home.  I love being able to toss all the dirty stuff in a bucket and deal with it at home.  This makes clean up quick and easy so you can get cleaned up and into the game faster.


Use a helium balloon as a spot marker.  You know how I said last weeks football game was epic?  Well I left out the part where me and three family members got lost after the game and it took us over 2 hours to find the car!  Someone mentioned tying a balloon to the top of your car or tent, so everyone can find you, this will always be a must for me now!

Bring easy and delicious snacks!  A tailgaiting party isn’t complete without some delicious dip to sink your chips into, or crackers in my case!   We love Heluva Good! Dip because there are so many other dipping options!  With a assortment of flavors including French Onion, Buttermilk Ranch, White Chedder and Bacon, Bodacious Onion, and more, they really have a flavor to satisfy everyone’s taste buds and to pair with whatever you want to dip.  We dip pretzels, bread, veggies, crackers, and so much more! 


At last weeks tailgate, I went with a full cracker tray with three great flavors of Heluva Good! Dip.  The dips fit easily in the cooler, the tray was easy to set up, and most importantly, everyone loved it!  Everyone could snack all afternoon without needing utensils, plates, or getting messy.
What is your favorite food to dip?  Make sure you look for these bold-favored dips in the dairy aisle at a store near you!

These are some simple ways I make tailgating easier for my family.  What’s your favorite tailgating tip?

 

 

7 Simple and Affordable Ways to Get Your Home Festive for Fall

This post is sponsored on behalf of #AtHomeStores, all opinions are 100% my own.

7 Simple and Affordable Ways to Get Your Home Festive for Fall

Top simple and affordable ways to warm up your home for Fall

Fall is my favorite season, growing up in New England I loved the cool air and the sound of fallen leaves crackling as you walk.  Now that I’m living in Florida, It takes a little extra effort to get the cozy fall feeling, but there are so many easy and affordable ways to bring the autumn magic into your home.

It was time to update some of my decorations this year, now that we are settled into our Florida apartment.  So, I of course took a ride over to At Home.  Ever since finding this store chain after moving down south, I have been hooked.  It has absolutely everything I could ever want for my home, and my husband laughs at me when I say I’m running in to get something, because I have never spent less than 4 hours strolling through my local At Home!  It’s a huge store, the prices are amazing, and during the holiday season it is even more fun.  During my shopping trip last week, I was able to get everything I needed to make my house feel warm and inviting.

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7 Budget Friendly Ways to Get Your Home Festive for Fall

  1. Your front door space is the first place your visitors see as the enter your home, its also the first thing you see when you get home. Make it a festive and inviting area easily, by adding a wreath and door matt. At Home also had tons of wooden signs and outdoor décor, so you can go as simple or as extravagant as your imagination takes you at this store.  Because we are still in transition and doing apartment living, I chose a simple sign that lays against my wall, along with some cute decorations for my table area where I drink my coffee in the morning.
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  2. Light yummy smelling candles. When I think of fall, I imagine caramel apples, pumpkin pie, and cinnamon tea. Lighting candles automatically bring a sence of warmth to your home, and At Home has some amazing fall scented candles that will leave everyone asking, “what’s baking?”
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  3. One of the easiest ways to decorate for any holiday or season is to add some decorative throw pillows to your couches and chairs. At Home has isles of throw pillows in every shape, size, and color I could possibly imagine, including fall themed ones.  I fell in love with this long Autumn Greetings pillow!
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  4. The autumn months are also when some of my favorite movies start playing on TV, like Hocus Pocus and Casper. By adding a beautiful thick throw blanket to your sitting area, it makes it feel like a welcoming area to cozy up with some cider and enjoy the evenings.
  5. The autumn months feel like the kick off to all things sweet. Once the summer months wrap up, and the nights get chilly, my sweet tooth really kicks in.  Baking is a huge hobby in my house all fall and winter, however even just placing a simple candy dish out adds some fall flair to your home.
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  6. Another really easy way to add touches of fall to your house is in the kitchen with cute dish towels, pot holders, and mugs.
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  7. Lastly, make sure you switch out your summery table centerpiece for a simple fall themed table spread. At Home has some gorgeous options for a table scape, from tall candles to blown glass pumpkins and gourds.  However, like many of you, I have a rambunctious table during day to day life, with three kids snacking, doing homework, playing games, exc.  So, I opted for a pretty burlap table runner with a couple pumpkins and mason jars.  However, the brown and turquois blown glass pumpkin is still running through my mind, so I may be making a trip back to add it to my Thanksgiving table.

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That is all, I was able to pick up about 10 items that all ranged in price from $3.99 to $24.99 and my house now feels ready for fall!

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How do you decorate for fall?

Affordable Party Ideas for the 4th of July

Affordable Party Ideas

Affordable Party Ideas for the 4th of July

If you are wanting to throw a festive but yet affordable 4th of July party, then check out the ideas below! I am going to share some affordable party ideas for the 4th of July! You can have a festive time, and not break your piggy bank in the process. 

The 4th of July is one of the biggest celebrations of Summer, so you want it to be a bang! But if you find your strapped for cash after graduations, family vacations or money is just tight in general, then here are some affordable ideas! 

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Host a Festive 4th of July Party for Less 

Block Party: This is a traditional party idea, but a lot of towns don’t do this anymore. Consider doing a block party with your neighbors. Assign each household a certain food, drink, or dishware to bring. This will cut down the cost of buying a whole meal to feed a lot of people, and you will have lots of fun! 

Pot Luck: A 4th of July party is not a birthday celebration, so it is okay to ask family and friends to bring a dish. You could ask them to bring sides, or drinks, or designate each person a certain dish that compliments the main dish! 

Cups, Plates, Silverware: Don’t go all out for the red, white and blue star and striped paper dishes. You will pay a ton of money for these, and probably less count in the pack. Instead you could mix and match solid colored items for a lot less. Look at dollar stores or even the dollar bins at Target. They will have solid red, white and blue cups, plates, silverware, that won’t cost much. Or if you have enough dishes, use your own and just toss in the dishwasher after. 

Decorations: You might be surprised what the dollar stores have for decorations. You could find some really neat 4th of July inspired paper lanterns, centerpieces, and more to decorate with. They have really cute decor for cheap. Just budget a certain amount for decorations and make sure not to go over it. Streamers are a very affordable decoration idea, you can truly decorate a lot with a roll of streamers! 

Outdoor Games: If you have children coming, consider just simple outdoor games to keep them entertained. Spray paint stars and stripes on the lawn, or do a big hop scotch area on the sidewalk. Buy some glow sticks for them to play with, water balloons. Anything that doesn’t take much to do. Most kids will just run around and play the whole time or watch fireworks being shot off. 

Fireworks: If you plan to shoot off some fireworks, consider buying them the day of the 4th. A lot of stands will already begin to discount the fireworks on the 4th of July. You can save a little money this way. Also feel free to ask guest to bring a few fireworks if they want to shoot some off as well. 

Dress: Don’t feel you have to run out and buy the whole family red, white, and blue outfits! First hit up your closet and see if you can piece an outfit together to make it work! A lot of times you will find something that will work just as well as buying a new shirt. 

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Food Ideas 

BBQ: Consider doing hot dogs and hamburgers, the classic bbq food. Instead of buying pre-made hamburger patties, make your own, you will save a ton this way. Or buy a few pork butts and put them in the crockpot with some bbq sauce for slider sandwiches. Some stores will offer buy one get one free on these roasts! 

Side Dishes: Consider doing beans, potato salad, pasta salads, and so on. These are all easy to make and pretty affordable. If you make your own salads, you can make three times as much for half the price of buying a container already made. 

Fruit: Buy a few watermelons and then a star cookie cutter, and make cute star shaped watermelon pieces. This is a festive and very affordable treat. Also do strawberries and other berries, you can buy on sale and then have them out. 

Cake: Do a cake for a dessert. This is a very affordable dessert, and you could do a flag design on top, or do a jello poke cake, and then cool whip for frosting and top with slices of strawberries. It won’t cost more than $5-$7 to make and will feed a lot. 

Drinks: Consider doing water, tea and lemonade. All are very affordable drink options, and scream summer! If people want alcoholic drinks, as them to bring it themselves. 

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