Archive for the 'Gift Ideas' Category

How Do You Amuse Your Dog with Unique Pet Toys? 06Feb14

Dogs are naturally playful, whether they are with you or by themselves. Playtime is important for dogs, since it helps them to exercise and stay healthy. When you play with your dog, you also give him bonding time and mental stimulation. Your dog should always have the proper types of toys for safe playtime. This means that you need to check your dog’s toys daily, to make sure that they are still safe and intact.


If you have a smaller dog, invite him to play with a toy that is just his size. You don’t want to give a German Shepherd-sized ball to a Toy Poodle. He wouldn’t know what to do with it, unless he could push it around with his nose. Toys should be in good condition, so that your pet won’t eat the squeaker from inside his squeaky toy. Small toys and squeakers could be a choking hazard for your dog.


Elastic bands, ribbons or string are quite interesting for your dog, according to Hills Pet. But you should not give them toys that have any of these things attached. They are simply not safe. Stuffed animals are also not suitable for dogs, since they may have plastic eyes or parts that could be chewed off and swallowed.


A good rule of thumb is that if you have any toy – even toys designed for dogs – that wears out, you should throw it out and get your dog a different toy.


Kong toys are among the best in safety and acceptance. You can fill the wobbler toy with treats, and as it rolls, wobbles and spins, he can only grab a treat here and there. It will keep your dog interested for hours, since there are yummy things inside. You can fill up the toy by unscrewing the top, and your dog won’t be able to gulp his treats so quickly. Some toys can even be healthy for your dog, such as a dog bone tooth brush.


Source:


http://www.hillspet.com/dog-care/choosing-dog-toys-adult.html

Need A Holiday Gift Giving Guide? 03Dec13

The holidays are here and it’s time to start thinking about gift giving. Of course your family and friends are on your gift list, but what about giving gifts to other people? You’ll need to consider giving gifts to people who provide regular service to you throughout the year including your children’s teachers, and your boss and work associates. Tipping is appropriate for some gifts such as your hairdresser or nail technician. Holiday tips should be about double a regular tip.


Parents need to purchase gifts for their children’s teachers but not all gifts are appropriate. Stay away from wine or related gifts and avoid gifts that are too personal. Opt instead for useful gifts that are unique. A cute print insulated lunch tote makes an ideal teacher gift and won’t break the bank. A metro cooler basket is another fun choice. When shopping for the boss, be sure to keep the gift professional. Consider a personalized gift but be sure to order in advance so you’ll have it in time for the holiday office party.


If you have a large office, consider conducting a secret Santa. Each person picks a name and buys a gift for that person. This allows you to buy only one gift rather than many. While it may be tempting to buy a funny gift, it’s better to choose a nice gift that the person can actually use. There is usually a set price limit (sometimes about $25) so you’ll have to get creative. For men, shop for sports related gifts or for hunters, consider gifts for the hunter. Other good choices are gardening, cooking, and pet related gifts so choose an option based on the person’s interests. When giving gifts, a good rule of thumb to follow is to give a gift that is something you’d love to receive. Keep your choices simple and have fun finding the right gift for everyone on your list.


Sources:



http://christmas.organizedhome.com/gifts-and-giving/understand-unwritten-rules-gift-giving
http://spousebuzz.com/blog/2012/12/top-10-dos-and-donts-of-teacher-holiday-gift-giving.html

Entertain Kids with Great Gifts 26Jun12

As I have told you before, this time of year is my favorite. I love summertime. It’s warm, it’s never cold, it’s sunny, friends and families get together for good times fairly frequently, and it’s generally just a pleasant time of year. But, let’s be honest, the start of summer isn’t just fun for me because of the gorgeous weather, it’s even more exciting for the teachers who are ready for the school year to be over and for their summer break to begin. And, even more excited are the students who can finally have their long summer vacation, and for the long awaited end of the school year. We can all remember what the last week of school felt like (torture!) when the sun was shining; all we wanted to do was go hang out with friends outside – not study in classrooms inside. Well, the time is finally here – the end of the school year.


entertain kidsWhat does the end of the school year mean? Well, for the parents out there, it might mean congratulating your own kids by finding a great gift to reward them for good grades from the past school year. And when that gift is purchased, you might want to make sure it is one to entertain the kids with for the whole summer – because two months is a long time to keeps kids entertained. But, in the same thought, the end of the school year might means finding a camp or a new hobby to entertain kids. There are many different camps out there from overnight camp, day camp, specialized camps for sports, music, arts, and really just about anything kids might be interested in learning more about outside of school. The end of the school year could also mean family vacations. Vacations are excellent ways to keep kids entertained and give adults the break they need from the regular work week. The end of the school year is also the perfect opportunity for grandparents to spend quality time with their grandchildren. Parents might need to work, and summer camp might not start for a while, so keep kids entertained by sending them to get spoiled by their grandparents. This is a definite win-win-win situation by all parties involved.


Whatever the end of the school year means for you, I hope if you have children, that they have something fun planned to keep them busy for the next few months, so you don’t have to find a way to entertain your kids daily. I hope that if you’re a teacher, the end of the school year means you have an excellent summer planned and you’re ready to enjoy some time off – and maybe that means you get some quality time with your own kids.

Orgreenic 10 Piece Cookware Set 28Mar12

As you may know, I love to cook. I’m always trying new recipes and I become more adventurous with each meal I make. That is not to say that I don’t enjoy making simple dishes as well—sometimes you just can’t beat eggs, pancakes and bacon for dinner!

Orgreenic 10 Piece Cookware Set” width=
The biggest drawback of cooking is the cleanup. The good vibes I get from enjoying a delicious meal I’ve made myself are short lived when I see the pile of dishes waiting in the sink. Scrubbing, soaking, and scrubbing again is not what I want to do at the end of a long day. In January I told you about a frittata and a salmon filet I made with the OrGREENiC Frying Pan. I loved being able to take the pan straight from the stove top to the oven and cleanup was shockingly simple! Nothing stuck to the non-stick ceramic surface! A quick rinse and the pan was clean. I remember wishing all my pots and pans would be this versatile and easy to clean.


My wish has been granted! There is now an entire set of OrGREENiC pots and pans! The OrGREENiC 10 Piece Cookware Set is easy to use and clean, and looks great! You can easily broil, bake, braise, steam, sauté, fry, boil, and sear without adding extra oil, fat or grease! The ten piece set includes an 8” fry pan, 10” fry pan with a lid, 1.5 qt. sauce pot with lid, 2.5 qt. sauce pot with lid, 6 qt. stock pot with lid, and an aluminum steamer insert. I’m looking forward to braising a roast and tossing it right into the oven with veggies!


I can’t wait to get my new set of OrGREENiC Cookware to start cooking more and cleaning less!

Plush Pillows 20Mar12

I am one of those people who hates making my bed. I hate straightening the sheets, organizing the pillows, and laying the comforter perfectly even across the bed. I only use my bed for sleeping. I do not watch TV or read in my bed any other time aside from when I am about to go to sleep. My feeling was always, “Well I am just getting back in it to go to sleep to mess it up anyway,” my mom’s feeling when I was younger was, “Make your bed…end of story.” My brother and I even had a trick to making the bed easier: stop sleeping under the sheets at night so they would still be tucked in the next morning! That was so smart of us. I do, however, make it a point to make my bed when I am leaving my apartment for a few days so I can come back to a neat and clean apartment.


Recently, I read an article Spring Cleaning: 6 Reasons Why You Should Make Your Bed. I read the article because I thought it could convince me to start making my bed in the morning before work—and now I am mostly convinced I should give this a chance. plush pillow” width= The fact of the matter is that it really doesn’t take that long to accomplish this task (I am just lazy) and I always feel better when my apartment looks and feels clean. Making my bed, laying out the pillows in a fun way to add some color to my room really does make the whole place look neat, which essentially makes me feel better about staying there. I hate clutter and an unmade bed doesn’t help the cause.


I am not saying I will be able to follow through on this every day, because I hate to make a promise I cannot guarantee to keep, but I can promise to give this a try. I would like to see how it will affect my mood. I would bet that feel better about my apartment and how it looks will make me feel better and less stressed out. For those of you who make your bed every day, do you agree with this article? Also, if you make your bed every day, do you do it before you leave in the morning for work, or do you wait until you get home? I’d also like to know if anyone is on board with me (those of you who do not make you bed) to give this a try to see how it can change our day.


Personalized Ring Box 14Feb12

Happy Valentine’s Day! What’s your favorite thing to do on Valentine’s Day? Do you give gifts? Cards? To be honest, I don’t care much about Valentine’s Day, but I do enjoy some of the cute things that come out of it.I love that whether you have a significant other or not, Valentine’s Day can still be celebrated however you like.


Some of my friends give everyone in their office or department candy or pens. Some of my girl friends get together and eat chocolate and popcorn while watching movies. Some of my “coupled” friends make a big deal and make dinner reservations at expensive restaurants and buy expensive gifts, and the other treat it like any other day.


RING BOXFor me, the two best parts about Valentine’s Day are 1) You have every excuse to wear as much pink as you want all day; and 2) You have every excuse to eat chocolate all day without feeling the slightest bit guilty. So, whether you receive a special ring box with jewelry inside, or if you gather with a group of friends to laugh together, I hope you have a sweet Valentine’s Day today.


Personalized Frame 07Feb12

Yesterday I watched a woman help an elder woman cross the street. I stopped and watched because I don’t know that I’ve ever seen a stranger help another cross the street. I thought it was such a nice act of kindness and this time of year, so close to Valentine’s Day, I thought it would be a great idea to focus on doing more random acts of kindness.


Personalized FrameWhile I will still get the personalized picture frames as gifts, I will also ask friends to do at least one random act of kindness and then email me about it. Imagine how many good deeds can be done in just one day!


What are some of your ideas for random (or not-so random) acts of kindness?


Yoga Girl Water Bottle 30Jan12

Happy Monday! I hope you had a great weekend. Mine was family-filled. Really, just Saturday, but it was all day Saturday.


Due to the fact that I had to get on the road to meet up with my family way too early for a Saturday morning, I decided to take it easy on Friday night and even attempted to get to sleep early. So, I propped myself up in bed in my sea of pillows with my book and decided to rest early and hopefully fall asleep early. Is it just me, or is it every time that you try to go to sleep early it’s as if everyone knows and tries to stop you from sleeping? Long story short, my phone kept ringing, and each time I would jolt awake and not be able to fall back asleep. I had to be up by 6. I made it to the family adventures in time, don’t worry.


The entire family (almost 20 of us) went out for a family dinner to a Chinese food restaurant. This place is known for their duck – they serve up to 300 whole ducks a day – but being a vegetarian, I ordered vegetable fried rice. Needless to say, I wasn’t full by the time dinner was over. But, my mom and dad had a gigantic piece of my favorite chocolate cake at the house for me. How horrible is it that after dinner I came home and ate half of m chocolate cake? Does it make it better that I only ate half and not the whole thing? Either way, I did it, and it was delicious.


yoga water bottle” width=Now, I literally spent the time with my whole family and extended family all day and night, so you can imagine, I needed Sunday to recover. My friend and I got smart. We decided to make the most of what could be a lazy Sunday: We grabbed our yoga gear and yoga water bottles and went to a 9 a.m. yoga class. What a way to get motivated for the day. I spent the rest of the day preparing food for this week’s breakfasts and lunches. I am ready for the week!

Gumdrop Tree 20Dec11

Do you ever see something in a store that reminds you of something from when you were a child? I feel like most of the time I do not remember much of my childhood (sorry mom, I know this makes you sad), but there are some items that will spark a memory, or at least trigger a past moment that makes me smile.


Recently I have had two moments just like these. Both of my moments made me think of my grandfather. When I was in the grocery store ice cream isle the other day, I saw black cherry ice cream. Usually impossible to find, it brought me right back to having ice cream with my grandfather on a hot, sunny day. Then when I was in line at the pharmacy I saw candy orange slices. I don’t like them, but they, too, remind me of my grandfather as they were his favorite candy.


GUMDROP TREE” width=When I brought these moments up to a friend of mine, she told me she always remembers seeing the clear plastic gumdrop trees during this time of year. They are these little Christmas tree servers that get decorated with gumdrops. Apparently, she remembers the gumdrop tree at parties when she was younger. I have never seen a gumdrop tree, but now that I learned about them, I wouldn’t mind having one.


Last Minute Gifts 15Dec11

Is anyone else in holiday shopping panic mode? As of today there are just 9—count them, NINE—shopping days left! I have just realized there are people I’ve forgotten to buy gifts for, gifts I somehow thought I purchased but did not, and I still need host/hostess gifts for holiday parties and some stocking stuffers. I would like to get all of these things online as I have limited time and the malls are crowded. And if they were all in one place online, that would be even better!



All this week on Live With Kelly, they are sharing great gift ideas on the Holiday Gift Giving Guide. A few of the products they showed are exactly what I need! On Tuesday they shared gift ideas for guys, you can see the entire video here. Two items really piqued my RIP 60
interest; the Rip 60 Training System (shown at 0:25). And a Portable Grill (shown at 1:37). This isn’t the same grill as shown on Live With Kelly, but it’s the same price and has the side tables!



MONKEY SOCK WINE COVER” width=
On Wednesday, they showed some great stocking stuffers. They showed a wine bottle cover that looks like a Sock Monkey! (see it at 5:20). They said it was $12 on the show, but Taylor Gifts has it for just $9.98. This is such a great hostess gift…I’m getting a couple to have on hand!



After ordering a few of these items, I’ll be almost done my shopping!

Then I have to start wrapping…