Friday, December 9, 2016

Christmas for HER on a Budget

The first week of December has come and gone already. Have you done your Christmas shopping? I try to do the majority of mine in November so that I can spend most of December thinking about the reason for the season and overall just enjoying the holiday instead of scrambling!

Men are extremely hard to shop for. I know men say that women are hard to shop for, but really it's the men. Sorry ladies, I got nothin' for ya. This post is for the men to get gift ideas. Particularly for the wives, or the mother of your children. If she hasn't asked for anything specific (or even if she has, these would be great add-ons), I am here for you. What I am about to do is not only give you gift ideas, I'm about to create the perfect evening for her, for you. Stick with me until the end. You'll see.

Okay. Hear me out. It's a strange "gift" but like I said stick with me to the end. Pretty much all chicken noodle soups are mostly the same. No matter where it's from or who is making it. I have finally perfected this recipe and told my 9 year old daughter the absolute musts the other night. She repeated them back to me carefully before she scooped for seconds. This soup is on another level. It is not just noodles and chicken with chicken stock. It has the most perfect "golden" flavor. Yes, that's a flavor in my mind. I've only ever used it to describe a chocolate chip cookie before. Somehow I'm also using it to describe soup. Figure that one out! Its golden, chickeny, perfectly seasoned flavor is by far my favorite soup right now! It took me a few months to get it right and make it my own, but I have just now revised the recipe to match how I make it now, secrets and all. Just for you! Enjoy!

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This is still a favorite of mine. The winter always has my skin so dry it peels. Makeup looks disgusting and patchy. I look unhealthy and dull. It's a sad time. I put this on for about 20 minutes every other morning (so far it hasn't made a difference if I've put it on before or after a shower as long as I moisturize). You can feel it working in a pleasant way and your skin feels very refreshed afterward. The dryness and peeling for me is gone and replaced with a healthy glow! You can technically sleep with this on and get the ultra effects from it. However, this mask doesn't dry like your typical mask. Your face absorbs it over time so that's nice, but sleeping with it on was tricky for me so I haven't done that in a while.
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This is where I tell you that this bubble bath stuff is $50 but totally worth it. Because you can't find the cheap kind that can do what the expensive kind does. Fortunately that's all a lie. I got this at Walmart for a few bucks. I've seriously been using it every other night and there are no words to describe how amazing it is! It has a subtle scent of lavender, which is great for relaxing. The best thing about the scent, though is that I can add some essential oils and the aromas won't clash together. After I'm out of the bath, I'll be in my pajamas relaxing for the night and I can actually feel myself glowing. Do you know what that feels like? To FEEL yourself glowing? It's what I imagine heaven to feel like haha. I always felt like bubble bath stuff was all created pretty equal. I was wrong. They are not all created equal. The cheapo stuff at Walmart is far better than anything I have ever tried (and I have tried a LOT). 

Yeah I went to one of those Mary Kay parties and I couldn't even handle how ridiculous this lotion was. If you've ever gone to bath& body works and used their salt scrub at the little sinks and felt your soft hands after, that's basically what this lotion does. However, this lotion is a little more intense and it lasts through 3 washes! It seriously feels like you're massaging a creamy satin into your hands. It's so luxurious! I got a couple for my girls stockings because they immediately switched to high maintenance status after trying it and can't function without it. It doesn't look like Mary Kay allows you to buy it without the pampering set with it? However, if you find a Mary Kay consultant (a quick Facebook post asking for help will do fine), she may have sample sizes on hand that you can buy for cheap. I was able to get the ones for my girls for $1 and it's a good size.

Slipper socks $10
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I don't remember where I found these. They may have been a gift. Let me tell you, slipper socks are the best invention for cold feet! They feel soft and cozy like a slipper (better than a slipper in my opinion), but are practical to walk in. Their grippy bottoms are slip resistant (unlike your average sock), and they're not bulky or awkward like a slipper. You can curl up on the couch without a giant foot in the way or worrying about the slipper falling off. I wear my slipper socks all day inside the house (and outside the house on a few occasions if I'm being honest. Don't judge me!) 
There are so many different kinds of slipper socks these days. These particular ones are found here and here.

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Now, I am about 70% positive that the blanket in the picture and link is the same one. I can't quite tell because of how it's folded, but I'm pretty sure that's the one. I bought this blanket on a whim because it was on clearance at Target. I got it for super cheap not expecting a whole lot out of it but I needed a good throw blanket for my bed. It's been almost a year and this blanket has gotten A LOT of use! It is perfectly soft, perfectly sized to be wrapped up (it kind of just molds around your body) and perfectly warm. My husband doesn't really care for.... well, anything warm really. But he especially has never been one to say, "I need a blanket," aside from bed time. But he has been grabbing this blanket to snuggle me with almost every night during our shows. That is saying a lot! It's literally the perfect blanket. 

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These are freakin hard to find. I'm just saying that straight up. So far, I've only found them at Target. I'm not sure if they are only for the holidays or if they will keep selling them after Christmas. They are not your average mint or peppermint chocolate flavor. Oh no. These may as well be wrapped in gold and handled with gloves. They are far too precious and delicious to be thrown into the "average" category. You might actually drop to the floor after biting into one of these. After the shock has worn off, you'll be able to finish it, slowly, savoring every tiny second. The best way I can describe them is like girl scout thin mint cookies on crack. They are just so much more than what I could have ever imagined or describe. Their texture is on another level somehow, too. I allow myself exactly ONE every night after the kids are tucked in and I'm done for the day. I ration these suckers like a crazy person. 

Once Upon a Time (free with a Netflix account)
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I'm definitely late discovering this show. My best friend suggested it to me so I turned it on one day during my son's nap while my older kids were at school. It was not at ALL what I was expecting. So I kept watching. My husband got into it, too and before I knew it we were watching it every night. We have shows we really love, but we need a good show we both like that we can have on while the kids are trying to fall asleep. Our TV is in another room of course, but I swear, no matter how quiet the volume is, there are words that somehow stand out like it's at full volume! We just want to relax without, "oh crap, do you think they heard that? Are they asleep yet?" Once Upon a Time is pretty perfect for that. Our kids will walk out for their tenth drink or needing to use the bathroom or whatever, and they just see some fairy tale character being totally appropriate as they walk by. I will say that halfway through season 2 to halfway through season 3 it was only "pretty good" instead of really good or great. But it has been so much fun to watch! I highly recommend it.

So here you go. I have created the perfect evening. Warm your lady up with the worlds best chicken noodle soup. Then, she gets to smooth on that Glam glow mask, hop into a nice bubble bath, massage some Satin Hands on, slip into her jammies with warm slipper socks and crash on the couch with the worlds best blanket as she savors a delicious truffle and zone out to Once Upon a Time. If I could recommend the best day to do this? It would be Christmas Day, after a long day of keeping up with crazy kids, disaster zones in every corner and being up late the night before with an early morning of jumpy, hyper kids. Good luck to you and Merry Christmas!

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