The holiday season is officially here, hive! WOOHOO!!
I hope all the American bees out there enjoyed their Thanksgiving! I spent my holiday watching the National Dog Show with my sisters, pretending to help my dad with the turkey fryer, eating/drinking far beyond the point of excess (what can I say? We were testing signature cocktail recipes), and then passing out on the couch somewhere in the neighborhood of 6PM. Thank goodness for leggings, because I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t be able to zip my jeans today if my life depended on it.
But seriously, I am so thankful for the opportunity to blog here on the ‘Bee and share my planning triumphs and tribulations with you all. It’s only been a few months since I joined the community, but I’ve learned so much from you all already. Thank you for welcoming me with open arms. I look forward to getting to know you all even better as I continue along my planning journey.
If I could, I would get each and every one of you the holiday gift of your dreams. But since that’s impossible, I figure the next best thing is to share some holiday gift ideas with you all in hopes that I can help you out with your shopping. Considering that our wedding is right around the corner, I’m definitely working with a budget this year. I’m even considering some DIY gifts, despite my general lack of craft-related skills. Got any ideas of your own? I’d love to hear them!
WHAT I’VE ASKED SANTA FOR …
Obviously, I’ve been very good this year, so I’m sure Santa’s got my back. In my dream world, here’s what would be under my Christmas tree!
I am a makeup fiend, and the Lorac Pro Palette is EVERYTHING. You can’t argue with the quality, and this palette is so versatile – you can create anything from natural, work-appropriate looks to a badass, party-girl smoky eye and everything in between. I currently have the original Urban Decay Naked palette, which is great, but in hindsight, I’d prefer something with more mattes. Plus, this palette has more fun colors.
Technically, I already have and love my Kindle Paperwhite. You can pry it from my cold, dead hands. But you know what I could always use more of? BOOKS. Lots and lots of books. I maintain an Amazon wishlist of all the books I’ve got my eye on, so whenever my family or Stallion wants to get me a little something, they can always check that. The best part? Books are inexpensive, so these are great gifts that won’t break the bank.
As I mentioned in my post about bridesmaids’ gifts, I am a huge fan of gift cards. Most of the time, when people ask me what I want, I don’t even have a concrete answer. (What can I say, what do you get for the girl who has everything?) Gift cards are perfect because I can hang on to them until I know what I want/need. I haven’t had a Christmas list in years for that reason.
GIFTS I’M CONSIDERING FOR STALLION …
I firmly believe that every man needs a good watch. Stallion does not own one. As he transitions from Ph.D. student to professional, he’s going to need to look the part, and a watch will definitely help him in that regard. That said, since he’s never worn a watch before, I wouldn’t spend a ton of money on it, lest it end up in the back of a drawer somewhere. This Citizen Eco Drive watch is a great budget-friendly choice – it’s versatile enough that it will look good with anything, and it’s high quality enough that it will last him for years.
Stallion loves going fishing. It helps him relax and unwind after long days in the lab. Truth be told, I don’t know much about fishing, but I do know he has A LOT of fishing stuff. There are a couple different boxes of lord knows what in the back of his car at any given time. Maybe a nice tackle bag would help him keep it all organized?
(via Pink Hat Sport)
Stallion is a huge baseball fan. Specifically, he loves the Atlanta Braves. Problem? We live in Boston. Solution? Look for when the Braves are coming to Boston and get tickets to one of those games.
GIFTS WE’RE CONSIDERING FOR OUR PARENTS …
(via Fudge Kitchen)
Nowadays, Stallion’s parents live in Charlotte, North Carolina. But they were born and raised in New Jersey, and they have great memories of the Jersey Shore. If you’ve ever been “down the shore”, you’ll know that salt water taffy and fudge shops are ubiquitous. Why not give them a little taste of New Jersey that they can’t get in Charlotte?
Stallion’s parents are really into gardening. They just moved into a new house, so they’re still in the process of getting everything exactly the way they like it. How pretty would these hanging pots look in their new backyard?
(via Savvy Sugar)
Stallion and I both live far away from our parents, so we don’t get to see them nearly as often as we’d like. Hopefully the feeling is mutual. These photo coasters are a great way to gift our parents something that is both sentimental and useful. We could use pictures from our engagement shoot if we wanted to give them recent pictures of us, but I personally think childhood pictures would be way cuter.
(via L.L. Bean)
Winter is cold, you guys. My parents keep the thermostat at 60, much to my mother’s chagrin. What better way to keep warm than with a gorgeous, soft fleece throw? These throw blankets from L.L. Bean feel so luxurious and keep you nice and toasty. The best part? My parents can throw it in the washing machine as needed – they have a dog who sheds all over everything, so that’s really important! Pet hair not a concern and you’ve got more money to burn? There’s nothing in the world like a cashmere throw – maybe this one from Restoration Hardware?
A few weeks ago, my parents were visiting. The weather was lousy, so we ended up spending a lot of time cooped up in my apartment. Stallion has a PlayStation 3, which I have taken over to serve as my personal Netflix machine. And thank goodness for my personal Netflix machine! My parents were enthralled with the concept of Netflix, but don’t have any devices they can use to stream on their home television. Enter the Roku – it’s inexpensive, can be be hooked up to their television, and gifted in conjunction with a Netflix subscription, makes an awesome gift that they would love.
GIFTS FOR MY FRIENDS …
I. Love. Subscription. Bags. Ipsy (full disclosure, that is my referral link; you’re welcome to use this link if you do not want to use the referral) is my personal favorite – I used to subscribe to Birchbox as well, but I wasn’t really into the “lifestyle” items that they like to include. Just give me makeup, man! A trial subscription is a great gift – maybe three or six months? Not only is Ipsy a great value, but by getting a little gift every month, it’s like I’m spreading the holiday love throughout the entire year!
Have you guys ever tried making your own beauty products? DIY beauty is tons of fun, and you can make lovely, personalized gifts without dropping a ton of money. The tutorial above for homemade body butter is pretty much goofproof. Maybe I can pair it with a homemade sugar scrub like this one? And, well, if I end up with some leftovers, they’ll certainly be put to good use.
(via The Pink Monogram)
Who doesn’t love monogrammed everything? These necklaces are so pretty and will look great with everything! Not interested in a full monogram? What about just a first initial, like these sweet earrings?
(via Mom Mom’s Apron)
Ever tried making your own booze? Limoncello is a delicious Italian lemon liqueur that you can make in a few weeks’ time, using nothing but cheap vodka, good lemons (read: non-waxed, non-dyed), water, and sugar – Alton Brown’s recipe comes out great! Not a lemon fan? Try making your own flavored vodka! Per Real Simple, all you need is vodka, whatever flavorings you want to add, and a week to let it all steep. Who could possibly turn that down?
Cards Against Humanity is the best game of all time. Enough said. (Okay, fine, so Pengy recommended this as well, but guess what? It’s SO good, I’m seconding her recommendation.)
I haven’t actually started my holiday shopping yet, but at least I’ve got a few things in mind. What’s on your shopping list this year, hive?