Dear November 2018,
What a great month!
You were a month filled with gratefulness, thankfulness, and the reminder of kindness. November, we filled you up with great moments and treasured times… Mainly Kensie’s first cross-country adventure and our hubby/wife trip to Washington D.C. DC was beyond words – FABULOUS! We also celebrated daddy’s birthday, Thanksgiving, our first girl-only STAYcation slumber party and Christmas came early this year with decorating the house and setting up the tree.
November you were good to us, but we are so excited for Christmas and the holiday month of December! Bring on Jesus’ BIRTHDAY!!!
:: Our Month in 9 Squares – November 2018 ::
December is here so you know what that means… 2017 Christmas Card Season is upon us.
YAY for Happy Mail! 🙂
This year I decided to order our 2017 Christmas Cards through one of our favorite online stationery companies… Shutterfly! If you are a regular here at Espresso Ever After you already know how much I adore partnering with Shutterfly and all of their personalized options; they make beautiful and quality goods for all to love! To tell you the truth, this pregnancy has really slowed me down this year and I am so thankful that I can trust Shutterfly with this aspect of the holiday season. The tired mama in me wanted to skip the photos and the card making, but since Shutterfly was able to help me with the heavy lifting… It was worth it. Their online program is extremely user-friendly and their options this year are unique and creative. As usual I loved so many of them, that I had a hard time narrowing down my favorite card styles.
We went with a bright and colorful look for our photos this year, and I knew I wanted to pick a card that offered a happy and cheerful theme. When I found this 5×7 Gate Fold Card, I knew it was the winner. It offered multiple text areas, different sized photo slots, 2 types of paper styles and a fun flip-open effect. Thank you Shutterfly for always bringing a winner!
I love giving gifts!!! But lets face it, this time of the year can get pretty pricy if you have to buy a gift for everyone you care about. That is why I am all about DIY presents. If you can buy in bulk and make multiple gifts at once, gifting doesn’t have to be exhausting or expensive. Remember, it’s not the cost of the item that makes it special, it is the thought and care behind the gift that really matters.
This Christmas “S’MORES In A Jar” DIY gift tutorial is perfect for anyone in your life that likes chocolate, campfire S’MORES or mason jars. It is easy to make, filled with yummy goodies and will bring S’MORE love to your Christmas season!
I don’t know about you, but thinking of a new and unique creative way to make a gift for a loved one for Christmas is exhausting! I love getting crafty, and putting my DIY-thinking cap on, but sometimes life gets in the way and we are too busy when it comes time to executing our amazing and complex ideas. If this hasn’t happened to you, that is amazing, but true confession… it definitely has happened to me! This time of year can be very overwhelming thanks to Pinterest. To help you out this year, I made an easy-to-do, very inexpensive and simple photo craft for all of the grandparents in our lives. Trust me, very little creative skills are needed for this one! I hope this adorable and easy-to-make tutorial brings you peace in this crazy-busy time and allows you to impress your loved ones. Are you ready to get crafty???
Every year we take the girls all dressed up in their matching Christmas dresses to Santa’s Wonderland at Bass Pro Shop for their annual Christmas photo with Santa. Truth moment… every visit I hope for at least one crying girl; I adore a good cry face! This year proved to be almost identical to last year with an extremely sad face from my sweet 1.5 year old who still doesn’t love the idea of sitting on some strange man’s lap! And for the second year in a row, my four year old was beyond excited to greet Santa with a smile and proceed to tell him what she would like for Christmas. If you are wondering what she asked for, I learned that she wants purple glass slippers and a pink wand; good to know!
This post contains affiliate links. All thoughts and opinions are 100% my own.
December 1st is tomorrow, and you know what that means… Elf on the Shelf returns!
If you are looking for some Elf on the Shelf inspiration, then search no further! I have compiled my 25 favorite Elf on the Shelf ideas for you to use, so that you don’t spend all of December trying to think about where to place your elf next. Below you will find my 3-part series highlighting 25 creative ways to bring the spirit of Christmas to your home with the help of the Elf!
The way to my heart is through a personalized gift. I am all about the sentiment behind a well thought out and creatively unique gift. It doesn’t have to cost a lot of money, to me, it’s the little touches that go along way. So I have teamed up with Shutterfly, the master of everything personalized, to guide you through some of my favorite personalized gifts to help you give the gift of PERSONALIZATION this year! With Shutterfly, personalized gift giving is so easy and definitely the way to go this holiday season.
:: GIVE THE GIFT OF PERSONALIZATION WITH SHUTTERFLY ::
I don’t know about you, but I am beyond excited for the holidays this year. I love decorating the house, the chilly weather and the cozy and snuggly times shared with my family. One of our favorite holiday traditions is cuddling up with the girls, and watching our favorite holiday movies. We love to put on our favorite pajamas, snack on goodies and get into the holiday spirit. It is a tradition that my girls have come to love and look forward to, and I wouldn’t trade it for the world.
This year I decided I was going to go all out and surprise the girls with matching pajamas, and I found the perfect shop to get them at. If you haven’t heard of Gentry California, you are in for a treat. When I came across this mom-owned adorable shop, I fell in love! Gentry California specialized in monogrammed and personalized apparel for babies, children and women and everything is beyond fabulous!
Can you believe that Thanksgiving is only two weeks away… Which means Christmas is right around the corner??!! Where has 2016 gone?! Since December is almost here, you know what that means… Time to order Christmas Cards! Every year I order our family Christmas Cards through Shutterfly because they have the biggest selection and I am always happy with their backgrounds, colors and options. Their website is so user-friendly and within a few minutes you can have a picture perfect card.
If you’re not familiar with Shutterfly let me explain. Shutterfly is an online photo and personalization company that I have been using for over 12 years. Let’s just say I’m a big fan of Shutterfly! Every November, with the click of a button, I upload my family photos into their website and create a unique and special Christmas Card to send out to my family and friends.
Shutterfly does an amazing job of coming out with new designs, creative photo layouts, well-thoughtout holiday taglines and colorful touches that make our holiday cards so beautiful; and this years selection does not disappoint!
Not only are the selections amazing, but so are the prices. Shutterfly always offers amazing discount codes and you get so much bang for your buck when you order through them online. (Keep reading… There are fabulous Shutterfly discounts at the end of this post – Your welcome!)
Don’t get me wrong, I love a good girls night out… but even better is a girls getaway! A few days to regroup, relax, let loose and just have fun. No kid-talk, no kids, no diaper bags, no bottles and (sorry babe) no hubbies. Just a good girlfriend to make memories with and explore, explore, explore!
My best friend is quite the world traveler so when the opportunity presented itself to jump on a plane and take a 5 day trip to NYC with her, I was gone in a New York minute. We stayed in Time Square and hit just about every hot spot from The Empire State Building, Central Park, Columbus Circle, Bryant Park, Rockefeller Center and of course we ate and drank our way through every fancy restaurant and bar in the city. We averaged 10 miles of walking every day and when we needed a break we hailed a cab and enjoyed the sites from an ol’ faithful NY cabby. It truly was a best friend getaway I will never forget and I am so grateful that she knew just what this mama needed. By the way, New York at Christmas time has got to be one of the most magical times to be in NYC. The ice skating, the chilly peacoat weather, The Rockette’s show and Rockefeller center just come to life at Christmas time.