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Posts in “Christmas”

7 Husbands Reveal What They Want for Christmas…

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

7 husbands reveal what they want for Christmas Hero

I’m always clueless about what a man really wants for Christmas, and by man, I mean my husband. I mostly give him what I “think” he should have, such as men’s facial wash, moisturizer, a nice watch, etc. As it turns out, these are things he rarely uses. Today, I want to share what my blogger friends’ husbands really want for Christmas and why. And yes, I included my husband too. But oh boy, his wish is out of my budget. 😉 Enjoy browsing!

7 husbands reveal what they want for Christmas gift guide

 

1) “I’d love some leather motorcycle gloves for riding that keep my hands warm. I’d also love this beard kit from Zeus Deluxe Beard Grooming Kit for Men. Their products are amazing and help me keep my beard looking the way I like.” – Jake, husband of Bethany of Waves and Lilacs

2) “For Christmas I’d love to have a Samsung Galaxy Note 8. It’s an excellent phone for jotting down notes at work, taking high-quality pictures of family, and viewing media on its huge display.” – Brent, my husband 😉

3) “A Google Home so we can link all our smart devices together and so I don’t have to get up or use an app to turn our lights on and off.” – J.C., husband of Dee of Enjoy Mamahood

4) “I’d love to get a treadmill for Christmas this year. Taking care of myself physically  is important but with two kids getting time to go to the gym is nearly impossible. If I could workout at home I’d be more motivated!” – Hashem, husband of Deseree of Vivela Mama

5) “I want a big screen 4k TV for Christmas. I like to watch movies and my favorite shows in ultra HD.” – Andrew, husband of Cristina of Style Anthropy

6) “We moved from an apartment to a house this year and we had been waiting to get a grill, until I could get the kind that I want, without apartment restrictions. We enjoyed grilling out with friends and family, and the George Foreman grill isn’t cutting it anymore. ;)” Husband of Jenn of Harper Hadley Events

7) “I would really like to have a wooden display case to put all my watches because I like to have a nice box to put them all in.” –  Husband of Maryann of Arroyo Adventures

 

 

 

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Gift Guide: 7 Pretty Gifts For Her

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

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Top sponsored by Pink Blush.

I made a list on my blog post today about some of the gift ideas for the women in your life. These are great, whether they’re for your wife, mom, best friend, sister, or in-laws! There are many products popping out this season and I know it can be overwhelming. That’s why I wanted to help by giving you some ideas for your shopping list, to surprise the special women in your life.

7 pretty gifts for her gift guide

 

  1. Sleek Petite OrganizerThis a 12-month planner, spanning from January to December 2018. It comes with a gorgeous golden metallic pen and pen loop. It is sleek and would be perfect to hand-carry and easily fits inside the purse or bag.
  2. Best of brushes set  – These brush sets are perfect for gifting, including yourself (Why not?! You deserve good brushes too!). It comes with a powder brush, angled brush (to contour some bronzer), and two kinds of eyeshadow brushes. Most brushes are expensive when you buy them individually, so the set is a good deal, as you get four brushes for under $60! It’s a limited edition release, so they are only available this Holiday season.
  3. Photo Clip Firefly String Lights – If you want a gift that involves pictures, this is a great way for gifting printed photos. String together memories from the past year with these fun Photo Clip String Lights. These can be use on the living room wall, a workspace, or even bedroom wall.
  4. Poppy lip duoThis set is a perfect lip duo of lipstick and lip gloss, that are just in time for  the Holiday season.The shade of pink-red is good for every type of skin tone.  All products contain natural ingredients and are safe to use, so you are not only giving gorgeous makeup this Christmas, but are also sharing a clean and safe product for your loved ones.
  5. Fringe Boots – Neutral colored booties are easy to style and match for this season. If you have someone who loves to dress up, from casual to flowy dresses, this is fun to wear because of its boho style fringe! I like how the heels aren’t so high and can be worn by moms with little kids.
  6. Bubble Wrap Calendar 2018 – A clever and fun idea to mark each day. This poster-size Bubble Wrap Calendar allows you to pop dates throughout the year. A fun gift for women who love unique Christmas gifts.
  7. White Marble Phone CoverMarble has been so popular, and this white marble cover gives your phone a sophisticated look!

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What’s your favorite product from the list?

Disclosure:This post has some affiliate links. By clicking or purchasing the product from the links, I may earn a small commission. I’m also part of Beautycounter to support clean and safer beauty products.  When you purchase Beautycounter products from my site, I get a 25% commission. All opinions on this post are honest and my own. Thank you for supporting my blog. I really appreciate it!

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Christmas countdown 2017 (opening a book)

Friday, December 1, 2017

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Cheers to the first day of December! It’s that time of the year again for the Christmas countdown with my kids. Last year, we would open a paper bag with notes inside and draw one out of the bag everyday until Christmas. Each note contained a Bible verse about Christ and activities for the day (see our Christmas countdown last year) to teach them more about the true meaning of Christmas. This year, I decided to start the countdown by opening a book each day, which has been used by some moms and grandparents out there for kids. I’ve been looking for Christmas themed books that talk about the birth of Christ and/or about sharing and giving. I was able to see fine a few of them online. I’ve also included non-Christmas themed books that still talk about kindness and giving, as we as parents try to teach these values to our kids. My two and three-year-old boys love to listen during storytelling and I’m sure they will be excited to do this every morning, especially unwrapping the books. Here are a few books that are perfect for Christmas reading.

1 The Giving Tree

2 Did I ever tell you how lucky you are? By Dr. Seuss

3 God gave us Christmas by Lisa Bergren

4 The mine-o-saur by Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen

5 The Pine Tree Parable by Thomas Nelson

Happy Friday and enjoy your weekend!

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Putting up Christmas tree as a family

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

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Brent and I agreed that we’d put up our Christmas tree after Thanksgiving. Although, I’ve been debating about putting it up since October (don’t judge, Filipino here ;)). What made this year’s Christmas tree different, was that our two toddlers were interested in “helping out.” That means they wanted to open and touch every ornament they could see, except we did not allow them to touch the lights. In the Philippines, it is common to use artificial Christmas trees since we don’t have fresh Pine trees there. This year, we are using an artificial tree (similar) that we bought from Lowes last year. We love it because we don’t need to spend money on a fresh one each year, though it would be nice to have one! I wanted to share some helpful notes about putting up a Christmas tree. This could be helpful for first timers… I wish I knew some of these before!

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ADD LIGHTS

It’s helpful and makes the process easier to keep the lights on while putting them around the Christmas tree. It is also easier if you put on the lights first before decorating. I like traditional white Christmas lights, but my husband Brent likes the assorted colors. I promised him that he could pick the colors next year. 😉

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ADD TREE GARLAND

Always make sure you have enough garland for your Christmas tree before putting it on. Try starting from the top and keep it loose, so it won’t look tight around the Christmas tree. We used ribbons last year (see here) and this year, I decided to try golden bead garland (similar) to drape on the tree.

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2016 ornaments – DIY photo ornament

putting up Christmas tree as a family

My eldest son’s ornament this year!

HANG ORNAMENTS

Hang the ornaments inside and outside to add depth to the look of your Christmas tree. Depending on your color scheme or theme, you can find out what to get for your ornaments. We keep our ornaments a simple mix of Christmas icicles (similar) and balls. We didn’t buy new ones this year except for our boys’ new ornaments.

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ADD GIFTS

Since we put up Christmas trees so early in the Philippines, my mom always loved to put gifts under it, wrapped with Christmas gift wrap. However, they were actually all fake gifts, just for decoration. 😉 So if you do your wrapping of gifts for your family and friends last minute, add a few fake gifts for under the Christmas tree for decoration purposes. It will finish up the look of your tree! I like to use simple Christmas wrappers or just kraft paper to wrap the gifts.

I love how each year, we let our kids pick ornaments that they will hang on the tree. My eldest son picked an owl since it is his favorite stuffed toy. Guess what my second son picked? A… Donut! It’s a sprinkle donut to be exact. We also let them hang their first ornaments that we made last year, homemade photo ornaments. I will have them create another one again since our newborn needs one for his first Christmas!

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DONUT eat kids!

How did you decide to style for your Christmas tree this year? Any favorite ornaments for your kids?

 

 

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How to be creative on your Christmas gift wrap

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

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Here’s another fun way to be creative with your Christmas gift wrap. By experimenting with the texture of Christmas decors, you can get a modern, stylish gift wrap perfect for Christmas! Here’s how I made it!

Materials:

Kraft Wrapping Paper

Invisible Tape

Artificial Christmas Pine Leaf

White Acrylic

Sponge Brush

Paint Palette (or you may use a simple plate)

Twine

Scissor

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Step 1: Start wrapping your gift box with kraft wrapping paper and secure it with invisible tape

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Step 2: Apply white acrylic on the flat surface of your palette. Then, flatten it using a sponge brush.

how-to-creative-christmas-gift-wrap-8 Step 3: Press one side of the pine leaf down onto the paint. Make sure you are covering most of the area of the side you are using.

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Step 4: Dab the painted side of the pine leaf on the kraft wrapping paper. Try different angles for variation. Be sure sure to cover each side of the gift box. Let it dry.

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Step 5: When it’s dry, wrap twine around the box. Make sure there are at least 5 inches of slack remaining at each end of the twine.

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Step 6: To make the small wreath, cut two other artificial pine leaves and curve them into a circular shape. Attach them together using hot glue.

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Step 7: Put the small wreath on the top of your gift wrap, and center it. You may simply glue the wreath on top, or use any leftover twine to wrap around the wreath to decorate it.
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You may also attach a name tag with the twine you wrap around the wreath (as shown in the picture above). I recycled a cereal box to create my own tag for this Christmas gift. :-)

Any other creative gift wrapping ideas that you love to do for Christmas? Don’t forget to check my other gift wrap tutorial for a DIY Christmas tree stencil!

Merry Christmas to all! :-)

 

 

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Our Christmas Greeting Cards

Monday, December 19, 2016

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Yipee! We survived having our Christmas greeting card photos taken, although it was a rollercoaster! 😉  If you have seen my posts on Snapchat and Instagram Stories a few weeks ago, I shared a couple behind-the-scenes looks during our shoot with these two adorable, yet active toddlers. They were running around and didn’t want to stay in one place! But thank God, my mom was there to entertain the kids with the help of their best friends Owl and Froggie (their stuffed animals). Another important thing that we brought were snacks. Oh boy, do they love to eat all the time. It was helpful to use a tripod and clicker as well while my mom entertained her grandkids.

In the end, I’m happy with how the photos came out. I think it’s best to take  A LOT of pictures so you have many options to choose from. We tried to take photos one hour before sunset so that our pictures would have golden light. It was beautiful!!  Printing tip: Always make sure to send JPEG files (which I mostly use) to your favorite printing company in CMYK mode. It makes a difference with the colors and brightness!

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Have you seen our Christmas photo cards from last year? It’s like the behind-the-scenes images from this shoot, except for the reflux baby. 😉

P.S. I forgot to ask Brent to proofread the text for our cards. I missed “s” in “The Smiths.” 😉

(Similar items below)

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Homemade Christmas Photo Ornament

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

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Making these homemade Christmas photo ornaments have been one of my kids’ favorite things to do from our Christmas countdown activities. (Check out my post about the countdown here). They were so excited to feel the dough and play with it. On the other hand, maybe they were excited because they love making a mess… 😉 Here’s the complete recipe and tutorial on how to create these fun ornaments. They are also a perfect gift idea for loved ones and friends.

Ingredients:

1 cup flour

½ salt

½ water

 

Materials:

Rolling Pin

Photo print on a paper

Cookie cutter, a small lid, or your child’s sippy cup (something to make a circle with)

Twine

Scissor

Chopstick or straw
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In a large bowl, mix together flour and salt. Pour water into the flour, and mix. Keep on kneading the dough with the help of your little one’s hands. This may take a while if your kids are like mine and love playing with the dough.

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To start creating the ornament shape, sprinkle flour on the dough’s surface. Roll the dough, then use a rolling pin to flatten the dough to at least a ¼ inch. Next, use your preferred cookie shape cutter. I have a star cookie cutter, and I also used a sippy cup to make circles.
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As shown in the picture above, use a chopstick or straw to make a small hole where you will put string through later.  Use a small round cover (I used a laundry detergent and ketchup cap/lid) to carefully press onto the center dough. This is where the photos will be placed. TIP: Sprinkle some flour on the cap/lid you use so it doesn’t stick onto the dough when you press it.

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Arrange all the shaped dough on a baking sheet. Place them in the oven for 2 hours. If you don’t have an oven, you may let the dough air dry over a few days. Once dry, use sandpaper to smoothen out the edges.

To prepare the photo, measure the diameter of the inner circle of the ornament. I used Photoshop to get the right diameter of the photo. Print out your photo on paper or you can get your photos printed at a photo center. Cut out the circular photo. Use hot glue to attach the photo into the inner circle. Make sure you distribute the hot glue evenly so that there will be no bumps on the photo. Use any string, like ribbon or twine, to insert into the small hole for hanging.

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Done! I love how it looks on our Christmas tree right now. This is also good gift idea for other moms or grandparents too! You can add beads or other Christmas decor to the string of the ornament as well.

Any favorite arts and crafts activity you like to do for Christmas?

I’d love to hear about them!

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How To Make Christmas Gift Wrapping Paper

Monday, December 12, 2016

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As Christmas celebrations approach, some of you are probably looking for Christmas gift wrapping ideas that will make your gifts look more presentable to your loved ones. Maybe you want the presents under the tree to just look pretty.  Today’s post is about how to wrap and make your Christmas gifts look beautiful. It can be done on your own without spending on expensive materials. Keep scrolling down for the step-by-step tutorial!

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Step 1 Use a standard piece of paper and fold it in half horizontally. Then, fold the paper again, this time into quarters. 

Step 2 Use pencil to draw a Christmas tree or other Christmas symbol that you like, onto one side of the folded paper. Make it simple so it’s easy to cut out.

Step 3 Use a cutter to cut out the Christmas tree outline. When you’re done, open the folded paper and you should have a stencil.

Step 4 Cut it in half and save the other half just in case you need it. If you have a long box, you may attach these two panels of stencils together.

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Step 5 After you have wrapped a gift box (I used kraft paper, it’s cheap!), place the Christmas tree stencil on top of where you want it.

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Step 6 Hold the stencil down and dampen it using a sponge with white acrylic. Tip: Dampen the sponge with water, but make sure you squeeze as much of the water out as you can. Damp sponges allow the paint to apply itself more easily on the paper.

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Step 7 This is optional, but you can try using a cereal box and make small circles using a hole-cutter.

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Step 8 Repeat Step 6

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To finish the look, I used twine (similar on here) and an artificial Christmas pine leaf that I cut out of garland.

That’s it! Now you have simple, yet beautiful gift wrapping paper to use this Christmas!

Anyone here love wrapping presents for Christmas too? :)

CATEGORY Christmas, DIY
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Hello Island Mama is a makeup, DIY, design, and lifestyle blog by Em Smith. She is the mother of two boys and a wife, who loves to inspire and encourage others through her works and stories. Originally from the Philippines.

"I can do all things through him who strengthens me." Philippians 4:13

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