Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Things I Can't Live Without...this Holiday Season

Here is a little compilation of some of the things I just can't live without and really help me get through the holidays.  And I don't mean "through" like I hate the holidays.  Because I don't.  It's the most wonderful time of the year!!!  I just mean they make life a little easier during the holidays!

Everyone is putting together a "Gift Guide" which is great and really helpful!  But I thought instead of another gift guide, I would do something a little different.  These items could still make great gifts for your loved ones or for yourself!  These are things I use often, especially during the holidays and just simply some of my favorite things!

1.  Coffee:  I think this is a no brainer!  No one can get through the holidays with this little gem!  My go-to coffee is an iced coffee these days.  Cold weather or not, I am a sucker for iced coffees!  I purchased this black burnout tee recently from JessicaNdesigns.  It is SO me!

2.  Herringbone Vest:  This was the "it" vest of the season!  Originally from J.Crew, I started swooning over this lovely last year.  And I snagged mine online for a quarter of the price from GroopDealz.  I am sure there are a lot of differences in the quality.  J.Crew has great quality clothing and I do buy quite a bit of my clothing from them.  But anything that steeps over $100 usually won't end up in my shopping bag.  So the cheaper version for only $30 will have to do.

3.  Kraft Paper Roll:  This is something I use year round for multiple projects, but I get even more use out of this during the holidays.  I use my Kraft paper as wrapping paper.  You can paint on it, draw on it, stamp on it, or leave it plain for unique, one-of-a-kind wrapping paper.  I use it as a table runner under food while entertaining.  You can draw the name of each food item straight onto the paper and it makes for really easy cleanup.  And I have even used it multiple times as a DIY photo backdrop for parties.  It is multifaceted!  You can find this at a lot of places, but I purchased mine from Lowe's Home Improvement Store.

4.  Sally Hansen Miracle Gel:  I have spent disgusting amounts of money on nail polish in my day trying to find the best brand, the perfect color, the longest wear.  And nothing compares to a professional gel manicure.  I am really rough on my nails -- painting, spray painting, scratching off sticky price tags, and lots of computer typing.  So at-home manicures never really worked for me.  I love having my nails painted but it's not really in the budget to pay $30 for a manicure every 2 weeks (unless it's a special occasion).  During the holidays, there are so many Christmas parties and activities, that I really like to keep my nails painted.  And I think I have finally found a solution to a great at-home manicure.  Don't expect this to stay on perfectly for 14 days like the commercial suggests, but so far, it has surpassed any other brands I have used.  They have an array of colors to choose from (I bought Wine Stock, a dark berry color) and then you apply a top coat that gives a high sheen to the nail.  I have read that you can use any brand nail color underneath the top coat because it's the top coat that really gives it the gel strength. I have yet to try that, but I love this polish!

5.  Christmas Music:  Pandora is my go-to app for music.  I am lucky enough to have wireless surround sound throughout my house.  So you know I am blaring some Mariah Carey - All I Want For Christmas Is You throughout the house the entire month of December!  Looking for a holiday Pandora station?  Look no further than Mariah Carey holiday!  It is everything you need.

6.  Notes App:  Basically, I can't live with out this app every single day of the year, but I especially use it a lot during the holidays.  Every list, note, idea, thought, gets added to my Notes App.  It's really handy to have.  If I think of a Christmas gift for someone at the most inopportune time, I always have my phone on me, so it gets added to the "Christmas gifts" list.  Because I will most likely forget it once I am actually home to write it down.  I have lists on here that range from blog ideas, new blogs I want to look at, to party planning and entertaining during the holidays -- recipes, grocery lists, things to do.  It keeps me really organized with so many things on my mind!

7:  For the Love of Letters Artwork:  I've talked about this artwork quite a bit on my blog, but with hand-lettering being all the rage right now, I just can't get enough!  If you are looking for some For the Love of Letters artwork for your home or to give as a gift this year, now you can find it at Hobby Lobby, Home Goods, and even Zulily sometimes.  If you are local in Indianapolis, you can also find these lettered signs at Oliver's Twist and Dottie Couture.  They make the perfect gift for anyone on your list.

8.  Mahogany Teakwood Candle:  My new favorite candle is from Bath & Body Works.  I recently picked up a few candles here for gifts, and one for me when they had a huge sale on 3-wick candles for only $8!  And let me tell you friends, this candle is AH-MAZING!  It smells exactly like Restoration Hardware!  I wish I would have bought like 10 more of these!  "A cozy blend of fine mahogany, cedar, oak, and relaxing lavender" as they say.  And it looks pretty too!

9.  Christmas Movies:  Love Actually.  National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation.  Elf.  There are lots of great, classic holiday movies but these three are my favorite.  They are on my must watch list every year.  Pop one in while Christmas decorating, wrapping presents, or on a cold winter night and you are instantly in holiday mode.

10.  Rabbit Wine Opener:  Throw out your chintzy little manual wine opener and go out and buy one of these!  It is the best, easiest wine opener out there.  I received this Rabbit Wine Opener from Crate & Barrel as a wedding gift two years ago and I was simply amazed at how easy it was to open my wine.  No more blood, sweat, and tears opening your wine bottle while entertaining this year!

Hopefully at least one of these items will bring a little less stress to your life this holiday season.  What are some things you can't live without during the Christmas season?!?

{This is NOT a sponsored post.  Just some of my favorite things!}

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