Wrapped or Unwrapped?

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

By Rachel Hoeing

To wrap or not to wrap? That is the question. You know, Santa ... when he brings gifts to your children, are they wrapped or unwrapped? I never knew there was any discrepancy in this issue. Growing up, our Santa always left gifts under the tree for my sister and I, and they were always wrapped. Each of my gifts were labeled with a tag, reading "To Rachel, From Santa."

Our routine was to race downstairs, and first take a look at the note Santa left for us. It was usually sitting beside a half-eaten cookie and a glass with just a few drops of milk remaining. Even though we were about to crawl out of our skin to round that kitchen corner and see our presents, we always took time to read Santa’s note first and rejoice in the fact that we had been such perfect angels all year long and were able to receive the gifts we had requested.  Read More

Holiday Shopping Deals, KMO + New Giveaway!

Sunday, November 30, 2014

By Katie Moosbrugger

It's the most wonderful time of the year! Here's what we're highlighting in today's Sunday Spotlight:

~ Holiday Open House at Kim Taylor & Co
~ Kids' Morning Out - Registration Required
~ Discount at Cloverdale Ace
~ Chance to Win with the Greensboro Ice House!
~ Winner of McDonald's Prize Pack

Keep reading for details... Read More

Give the Gift of An Experience

Friday, November 28, 2014

By Katie Moosbrugger

We all know how hard it can be to find that perfect gift. But sometimes the most memorable present isn't something you can physically pull out of a box. Have you ever considered giving the gift of an experience? One of my favorites gifts of all time was an "experience gift." My husband and I bought each other tickets to a Broadway show when we knew we were going to be traveling to NJ over the holidays. It was our only gift to each other that year, and while I did not receive something tangible, the memories of the show and the fun we shared in planning our outing continue to stay with me - much more so than a typical sweater gift!

Today I pulled together a list of several places throughout the Triad (and nearby) that could offer wonderful experience gifts, yet I know my list only skims the surface. If I left off an obvious favorite - or if you have another unique experience idea - please add it as a comment below! Read More

It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Giftmas

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

By Guest Blogger Marybeth Barrett with Art & Soul Living

It’s beginning to look a lot like Giftmas. Can you believe that Black Friday is this week? Are you one of the crazy, brave souls that ventures out? If you tend to shy away from the shopping madness, here are a few DIY gifts that you can try at home. Outside of family and my friends, most of my world revolves around decorating and DIY. So, I thought I would share a few projects with you that I think would be fun gift ideas for the holiday...or for yourself.  Read More

Favorite Gift Ideas for Under $25

Friday, November 21, 2014

By Rachel Hoeing

Even though we spend so much time shopping for our kids, my gift list is always full of items where I am looking to find something fun, cute or meaningful for others, but I don't want to break the bank. I often need items for Gift Exchange Parties, neighbors, hostess gifts, teachers, and other special people in our lives. After visiting the Greensboro Holiday Market, and popping in and out of local gift shops, I came up with some unique gift ideas all under $25. The majority of these are local items, but as you will see, there were a few out of the area that I could not resist sharing.

Please add your own ideas to our list by commenting below! Read More

Gift Ideas for Teens

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

By Guest Blogger Katie Reynolds

What is the way to your teen’s heart? Giving gifts to those not so little, and yet not quite grown up, is no easy task. Their time left at home is flying by and you want nothing more than to “wow” them – let them know how much you love them! This can be accomplished a number of ways, not all of which require breaking the bank.

We have five children. Our first four children are ages 15-22. Our daughter is 15, and the three oldest boys are in high school and college. The surest way to their hearts is through their stomach. Gift certificates to favorite eateries are personal and they foster good times with good friends, which is truly a second gift. An unusual, but surefire hit is a bag of carefully chosen groceries that are cleverly wrapped, especially if it entails sweets or special things that are rarely bought. Favorite snacks show that you’re willing to extend the boundaries during the holiday season for them.  Read More

Gift Ideas: My Favorite Chapter Books

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

By Guest Blogger Carolyn Flaherty, author of Wicked Sexy Smart

Boy reading under the coversThe long standing bedtime routine in our house includes about fifteen minutes of reading and a little snuggle time. I have been known to literally fall asleep reading to a child. However, once in a while, you find a story that you love as much, if not more, than your child does. When we get into a great book, I edge out my husband from the reader slot, so  I don’t miss a chapter. Of course I pretend to do him a favor, “No babe, I got this. You go help with homework….”

The following is a list of ten of my favorite chapter books. I thought these would be great gift ideas this holiday season. The recommended ages vary and truly depend on your sensibilities. My children had listened to each of these countless times by the time they entered 7th grade. I’ve arranged the list so that we start with books that I would consider “G” rated for our youngest listeners progressing downward to the more “maturish” content. To learn more about the book, read a description or see reviews; simply click on the picture or title. Read More

The Hottest Toys for Christmas ~ 2014

Monday, November 17, 2014

By Guest Blogger Lisa Witherspoon, author of The Golden Spoons

In an effort to do better and shop earlier, it has become my annual blog tradition to post a list of the toys that are predicted to be the most popular during the upcoming holiday season. Big retailers actually publish their predictions in late September or early October. This year, I compared the lists from Toys R Us, Target, WalMart, and Amazon to compile the following list of this year's hottest toys. Enjoy ...
 Read More

Gift Ideas, Shopping Events, Special Discount, New Giveaway & More!

Sunday, November 16, 2014

By Katie Moosbrugger

In today's Sunday Spotlight....

~ Cloverdale Ace & North Greensboro Ace Are More Than Just Hardware Stores!
~ The Junior League of Winston-Salem's Fifth Annual Boutique
~ Special Discount at Lyndhurst Medical Spa
~ Wake Forest Baptist Health Seeks Participants for Research Study
~ A New Giveaway from McDonald's
~ The Winners of the $100 Visa Gift Card (thanks to Brenner)

Keep reading for details... Read More

American Girl Doll ~ Is it Worth it?

Friday, December 27, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

With the holidays just behind us, I thought I'd rerun this post from last year that stirred up comments from both sides of the argument (see end of post). Plus, you might remember this post that gives the opposite view of my post today. Whichever side you are on, I'd love to hear about it ~ especially with the season of gift giving so fresh in our minds.

Last year around Christmas, my mom called – and in a very excited tone – asked me if my daughter, Emily, would like an American Girl doll. My mom’s other granddaughter (age 10) has one and has absolutely loved it, so she thought this could be a great year for Emily to also receive one.

At first I nearly gushed about what a great gift that would be, and then I held my tongue. It’s not that I don’t like American Girl dolls. I think they are adorable and come with fantastic lessons for girls of all ages. Obviously the entire concept behind American Girl dolls is a brilliant success story.

But – from what I can tell – when you buy an American Girl doll you are not just buying a doll…you’re investing into a whole new lifestyle for your daughter. And that’s what makes me pause and wonder. Is it worth it? Read More

The Sunday Spotlight ~ 12/15/13

Sunday, December 15, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

Welcome back to another Sunday Spotlight! As you know, this weekly post highlights a compilation of events, products and/or businesses in the Triad that are sure to be added to your personal "To Do" list. We also kick off our newest Giveaway in this feature every other week, and announce the lucky winner of our TMoM $1,000 Holiday Giveaway!  Keep reading...

This week we feature news and events from:
~ Summer Camp at Greensboro Children's Museum
~ Special Offer from Ardmore Coffee
~ Southern Home & Kitchen Giveaway

~ Winner of the TMoM $1,000 Holiday Giveaway

~ UNCSA's The Nutcracker Read More

Gift Ideas for Women

Monday, December 09, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing
All kinds of women on your list, all kids of ideas for gifts! For this gift list I tried to stick to all local gift-giving ideas, some of which are tangible items, others of which are experiences. Whether you are buying for your aunt, your sister, your neighbor, your friend, your mom, or yourself, I hope my ideas below will give you a bit of inspiration!

Click on  the name of each idea to visit the corresponding website.

 Read More

The Sunday Spotlight ~ 12/8/13

Sunday, December 08, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing

In case you missed it last weekend, we introduced a new series of blogs on TMoM! The Sunday Spotlight will be a compilation of events, products and/or businesses in the Triad that are sure to be added to your personal "To Do" list. Each week we will feature a maximum of six listings. When we begin new giveaways on our Giveaway Page, these will be included as well, so keep an eye out each week for opportunities to WIN!

This week we feature news and events from:
Wright Choices
Camp Hanes
The Bee's Nest Boutique
Kim Taylor & Co.
Holiday Remembrance Tree

 Read More

Sustainable Toys for Babies and Toddlers

Saturday, December 07, 2013

By Guest Blogger Melanie Barbee, owner of Rolly's Baby Boutique

Most young children have plenty of toys, so finding unique ones during the holiday season can be a challenge. There is way too much plastic, way too many things that make lots of noise, and most importantly way too many toys that don’t challenge and excite our children and that are hours and hours of just plain fun.

At Rolly’s, part of our mission is to provide safe and nurturing items that help children get off to a good start in life. We researched several new classic and sustainable lines of toys that you can count on for being loads of fun, educational, and absolutely safe for your child.  Read More

Gift Ideas for the Men in Your Life

Friday, December 06, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing

Think about the men on your gift list: nephews, uncles, husbands, fathers, brothers, in-laws, neighbors and more. Think about their personalities and how they are all completely different. Today I am featuring 15 different gifts for 15 different personalities.

I hope these will give you some inspiration in your gift-giving this year. If you have more gift ideas for men, please share them by commenting below!  Read More

Volunteering & Giving to Non-Profits

Tuesday, December 03, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing & Sloan Wilson

Last year we gave every family in the Triad a challenge. The challenge was to choose a non-profit to give to during the holiday season. By giving your time or a donation, you show your children what the holidays are truly all about!

This year we would like to give you this same challenge but also ask you to spread the word to others. Please share this post on your Facebook page, Pin it, email it, tweet it, or talk about it! Spread the word and spread the kindness!

We have updated and compiled our list of non-profits in the Triad area. Our list ranges from charities, to special needs groups, to museums, to the arts. There are so many amazing programs and we hope your family will find one that touches your hearts. Click on the name of each program to visit the website. This list will remain on our Directories Page after the holidays, so please remember to help out year-round! Also, don't forget to read the blog we ran about Volunteering with KidsRead More

The Sunday Spotlight ~ 12/1/13

Sunday, December 01, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing

We are thrilled to introduce a new series of blogs on TMoM! The Sunday Spotlight will be a compilation of events, products and/or businesses in the Triad that are sure to be added to your personal "To Do" list. Each week we will feature a maximum of six listings. When we begin new giveaways on our Giveaway Page, these will be included as well, so keep an eye out each week for opportunities to WIN!

Our hope it that these Sunday Spotlights will be something our readers look forward to each week and will give each of you the opportunity to find out about the latest happenings in the Triad and support local businesses.  Read More

The Gift that Keeps Giving

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

By Guest Blogger Suzy Fielders

My seven year old daughter tells people her favorite gift of all time is the Molly (American Girl) doll that I gave her. She will also say that it’s her favorite, not just because it’s an American Girl doll but because “it was mommy’s when she was a kid.”

I know there is some controversy over American Girl dolls because of the price and their slightly overdone culture, but no one can argue that these dolls are not well made. In fact, they are so well made mine has stood the test of time from when I was a kid to still in excellent condition now. This fact made it possible for me to share a part of my childhood with my own daughter by passing it along to her. Read More

Gift Ideas for Ages 8 - 12

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

Sigh. Eye Rolls. That's the response I sometimes get from my 9-year-old when I ask what the hottest toys and gifts are this holiday season. And other times she rattles off a million ideas that seem to change from week to week.  Since kids this age can be so hard to predict, I decided to ask friends and family who are in the know for this age group, or who have lived through this era and can suggest what's best to buy.

Their suggestions are below. What I love about this list is that some gift ideas are tried-and-true year-after-year, while others are popular just this season. Either way, I'm sure you'll find something sure to please! Read More

Ten Favorite Finds for You

Friday, November 22, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

Welcome back to another Favorite Finds feature! It's been a while since we've highlighted a list of products and services that have been suggested to us by friends and readers. This list has been growing in my files, and I'm excited to share these 10 items with you today. You can visit previous Favorite Finds posts here and here and here, plus our entire category of Favorite Finds here. And if you ever stumble across something that you think is brilliant and must be shared with other TMoM readers, please email me and I'll do my best to include in a future Favorite Finds post!

A few of the products and services below make for great holiday gifts too. Enjoy! Read More

Top Picks for Toddler Gifts 2013

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

We know you're busy getting a head-start on your holiday shopping, and so are we. Just like we said before, we don't want to take away from spirit of Thanksgiving, but sometimes you just have to be realistic!

Today's post features some of the more popular toys for toddlers. Similar to Lisa's post last week, I searched various sites (Toys R Us, Target, Parenting, and Babble.com) to find out what they're saying are the hot picks, and then I narrowed it down their choices by what looked the most appealing to boys and girls in this age group. I also included tried 'n true toddler toy picks from some of us on the TMoM team at the end of this post. Happy shopping! Read More

Go Crazy for Chocolate with Loco for Coco

Sunday, November 17, 2013

By Guest Blogger Susan D. Andrews, owner of Loco for Coco

I started my tenth year as a teacher in a local school system in the Fall of 2012. While I had experienced several good years teaching in various schools, budget cuts forced me into a position where I was teaching dance at four schools a week, juggling middle school and high school curricula and attitudes, teaching one day in a state-of-the-art dance studio and the next in a roach-infested locker room.When the opportunity arose to buy Loco for Coco and change my family's life, I gladly said "good-bye" to the roaches. Now I am in a very happy chocolate place.

Are you crazy for chocolate? I am and it seems most people are. Yesterday, Jennifer Lester of UNCG's Graduate School, was in Loco for Coco to buy some gifts for a department function. She said that the last time she bought truffles from us, the recipients "raved" about the chocolate. Now we're her "go-to" for simple thank-you gifts. Lots of busy moms in the area come to Loco for teachers' gifts - our four piece truffle for $5.50 is perfect. Read More

Make Your Holidays Hassle Free at Ace Hardware

Saturday, November 16, 2013

By Guest Blogger Betsy Brown with Ace Hardware

The holidays are just around the corner and ‘tis the season for shopping and saving. Your locally owned Cloverdale Ace Hardware, located in Winston-Salem, and North Greensboro Ace Hardware, located in The Village at North Elm, have all of the supplies to make your holidays hassle free.  You will find everything you need to hang your Christmas lights, decorate your tree, roast your turkey, and even make your mother-in-law’s jaw drop with that perfect Christmas gift; truly a one stop shopping experience. 

Throughout the season they will be offering a variety of deals on items in both stores.  Ask one of the helpful employees about the employee in-store daily deal. These sales will be changed throughout the week and will include everything from the Charles Viancin Lids, for those holiday leftovers, to Fire Starter bundles, for a cozy fire on a cold night. Each deal is signature to the employee and changes weekly; look for them at the front registers. Read More

‘Tis the season at Invitations Only!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Sponsored by Invitations Only

While it seems like it was just summer, we are now closer than ever to the holidays. During this season, the shop is buzzing with holiday excitement and anticipation!

If you are one of Invitations Only's regular customers, you know that along with our invitations, stationery and paper items, we carry a wide variety of gifts. From babies to toddlers to tweens, there is something for everyone. If you need a hostess gift, a turkey platter for your Thanksgiving table, or even a wonderful present for a friend, we are sure you can find it here. Please know that our customer service experts are ready to help you! Read More

The Most Popular Christmas Toys of 2013 (Ages 3 to 8)

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

By Guest Blogger Lisa Witherspoon of The Golden Spoons

As a rule of thumb, we try really hard to NOT to blog too much about December Holidays until after Thanksgiving, but being a part of online social media ... we are feeling the pressure. So, when Lisa compiled this blog I knew we couldn't delay. Some of you are already out shopping. Some of you are already DONE shopping. And some of you have relatives breathing down your neck asking for ideas to buy your kids! (Or is that just my relatives??) Anyway, we felt like we owed it to you all to run this list now so you can be prepared. And for those of you who aren't ready to think about the holidays, don't worry - we will link back to this blog through other gift idea blogs and on Facebook in December! Also, Lisa will be showing these toys on Fox 8 Morning news on November 12th, so tune in! Thanks again to Lisa for this amazing list. Enjoy! ~Rachel

Did you know that major retailers publish their popular Christmas toy predictions in September?! As I was doing research to compile this list of popular Christmas toys, I visited the following websites: Walmart, Squidoo,Target, Toys R Us, and Kmart. Unlike last year, most of these sites had very similar lists. In fact, the first six on my list made the list on at least four of the five sites I visited.  Read More

Happy Holidays, You're Signed up for Camp!

Sunday, November 03, 2013

By Guest Blogger Stacy Calfo with Greensboro Day School

Is this scene familiar? You are standing in the aisle at your local toy store during the holidays trying to decide what would be the best gift. The problem is that the child in your life has just about every toy in the store. Legos? Check. Dolls? Check. Electronic gadgets? Check, check, and check. This season, give the ultimate gift — a week of summer camp at Greensboro Day School.

Greensboro Day School’s summer camps provide children with organized activities, time for free play, a nurturing and safe environment, and essential time in the outdoors — a great experience that offers extraordinary learning opportunities and enduring memories. At Greensboro Day School’s summer camps, children are safe to try new things and safe to be proud of who they are.

For only $140 (that’s a special $30 discount from our normal camp fee just for TMoM readers), you can send a child in your life to a fabulous weekly adventure. Be sure to mention TMoM when purchasing this gift of summer camp. See below for details on how to order your gift certificate. Read More

I Don't Even Want to "Touch" This

Saturday, November 02, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

It may be just a few days past Halloween, but I’ve already received a holiday wish list from my nine-year-old daughter. Actually, I first got her list this past summer and it includes just one item. This “list” has been left on my pillow, in my closet, on the dashboard of my car, in the refrigerator, and several other unsuspecting places. So what is she asking for? An Apple iPod touch. No surprise there.

I try to argue that she's too young for an expensive and advanced electronic "toy," but in response, she challenges me with: "Name one other nine-year who doesn't have one." I usually can rattle off at least one or two names if I'm lucky, but the list of nine-year-olds without an iPod touch keeps getting shorter and shorter. And I'm actually not surprised by that either.

In the spirit of the upcoming holiday season, I ask, "How soon is too soon for an iPod touch?" Similarly, what is the suggested age for an iPhone? Or an iPad? How about a Kindle Fire? I know lots of kids in elementary school have these fancy gadgets, so I'm sure there are plenty of parents out there who can weigh in! Read More

Fine Art Santa Portraiture with Your Children

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

By Guest Blogger Kristy Garrett

At Kissing Tree Studio, we believe in the spirit of Christmas and the wonder of a child. There is nothing more beautiful than legitimate awe on a child’s face. By using immaculate lighting and our very own “Santa’s Workshop”, a truly majestic experience will take place. Your child will explore Santa’s Workshop with the jolly man himself; International Hall of Fame Santa, Cliff Snider. He will explain his route from the North Pole, check for names in the Nice Book and share special cookies and milk, all while Photographic Artist Larry Hersberger captures every emotion and wonder on each child’s face. This is why we call it “theatrical portraiture.”

Santa uses special magic and a soft voice to give the children an experience that will be cherished for many years. Through amazing artistry, patience and knowledge, Larry will create a personalized children’s book complete with creative poetry and several images depicting The Night Before Christmas. The creation is essentially the child’s dream of the night before Christmas from the hours of 5PM-midnight. So they will be dressed in pajamas provided by the studio during an interactive session with Santa. It’s an incredible performance which is captured and then turned into fine art. And if you so chose, we ask that your bring in family heirlooms or special pictures so we can carefully place them in our set. These items will be evident in the images produced.  Read More

Halloween Neighbor Gifts

Friday, October 04, 2013

By Guest Blogger Kathryn Pepper, author of Destination Craft

Halloween time isn't really known for gift giving, but I feel like Halloween kind of kicks off the holiday season. First it's Halloween, then Thanksgiving, then Christmas... so why not celebrate the start of the holiday season by giving a gift! Below I feature three crafts that you can either give away or keep for yourself. Either way, they make for great decorations this time of year!

One of my favorite recipe blogs is Chef in Training and she has a delicious recipe for Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Pudding Cookies. When you layer the ingredients (well, most of them) in a jar, it looks cute and makes a fun but not too spooky neighbor gift.  So here's what I did... Read More

The Group Gift Drama

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing

With the end of the school year having just passed, I was reminded that this can be a HOT TOPIC! Group gifts can cause drama anywhere, but today I am going to use the example of teacher gifts.

Here is the scenario: Room Mom sends a note to all parents telling them that there will be a group gift purchased for the teacher at the end of the year. The room mom tells everyone that there is no pressure to contribute, but if you would like to contribute to the gift, please send in a check toward the purchase.

Sounds easy, right?  Read More

When It's Time to Bloom

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

By Guest Blogger Debbie McCaffrey

I find spring delightful. It’s the season when new buds and colorful blossoms remind us that no matter how chaotic our lives may seem, some things remain the same. Winter fades and summer beckons, birds sing and trees regain their splendor. It’s time to bloom. But does it ever cross your mind that with every flower that sprouts, every leaf that grows, and every baby animal born…a risk is taken? What about the bright bud that is prematurely picked by little hands, leaves that are blown away by an afternoon storm, or a baby bird that might tumble from their nest. The truth is that in all areas of life where there is “blooming” there is risk. But without risk we’d never grow. The beauty of life would be kept safe in a stifling box. Like nature, we are created to bloom.

Hip Chics Boutique in Clemmons recently grew and therefore bloomed in its very own way. On March 23rd we celebrated and reveled in the expansion of our store. You see, we could have stayed comfortable in our darling little space. Familiar and cozy, pleasing just as it was. But we sensed a new “spring” was just around the corner for us. As God opened the doors for us to utilize the retail space next door we knew it was indeed “time to bloom.” Read More

Spring Into Your Local Triad Ace Hardware

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Sponsored by Ace Hardware

Spring is here and wait until you see the great new product lines at your favorite local Ace Hardware store – Cloverdale Ace in Winston-Salem and North Greensboro Ace in Greensboro.

They know you are getting ready to get your yard and gardens in shape and will be heading out to Ace for your grass seed, fertilizer and other yard prep items. But wait until you see the Easter gift ware items and the new line of products that Owner Betsy Brown has brought into their stores this spring! Read More

Ever Wonder When It's the Best Time?

Thursday, December 20, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

My husband came home with a book that I literally devoured in minutes. It’s called Buy Ketchup In May and Fly at Noon: A Guide to the Best Time to Buy This, Do That and Go There by Mark Di Vincenzo. If you’ve ever wondered about the best day of the week to buy groceries, go out to dinner or put your house on the market - or best time of day to pump gas, take a pregnancy test or eat carbohydrates – you’ll find it in this book. It’s chock full of life’s random events that will help you “get more for your money, maximize your time, take better care of your health and be savvier about your career – all by doing certain things at the right time.” And every tip is backed by research and interviews done with experts – or by best-time conclusions.

This would make a great last-minute holiday gift! Without giving away the book, here’s a sneak peak of some items straight from the book: Read More

Healthy Gift Ideas from the YMCA

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

By Chelsea Cullen, Communications Director for the YMCA of Northwest North Carolina

Whether the person on your list is a long-time fitness fan or new to all things exercise, the Y has tons of great ways to embrace healthy living in your holiday gift giving. Here are a few ideas:

Personal Training
Sometimes we all need an expert to help reach our full potential. Personal training helps you learn new ways to reach your wellness goals, stay motivated and benefit from a program designed especially for you. Enjoy working out with a group or want to get fit with your friends in the new year? The Y also offers specialty and small group training sessions. Learn more about personal training options at your local Y.

Keep reading for more healthy gift ideas... Read More

Gift Ideas for Babies and Toddlers

Monday, December 03, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

There's no question this group is the easiest to buy for because you know the recipients will love just about anything you buy! But there are so many choices which can make your shopping a little challenging. While there are still many toys out there that are as popular today as they were years ago, the times have definitely changed. For today's post, I tried to find gifts that are not the usual ones, but there are so many that I could have easily added to my short list. Happy shopping, and let us know what you're buying for this age group - leave a comment below! Read More

Gift Ideas for the Men on Your List

Saturday, December 01, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

If you are like me, you still have plenty of holiday shopping to do. It seems that every year I always put the men off until last. My husband, my father-in-law, my brother-in-laws ... I am always at a loss for ideas.

Hopefully the list I gathered below will arm you with some presents that will make all the men in your life smile this holiday season. I have chosen a wide variety of price points. You will also find a few local store ideas as well as some quick and easy online ordering.

Enjoy the ideas below and as always, please comment with thoughts of your own! Read More

Favorite Hostess Gift Ideas

Friday, November 30, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

The calendar is filling up with holiday commitments, parties and festive get-togethers! Will you be ready to hand a small token of appreciation to each hostess on your list? If you’re like me and wait until the last minute (a.k.a…the day of), you'll appreciate many of these quick, easy and inexpensive gifts I found online and around the Triad. Last year I shared my favorite Last-Minute Neighborly Gifts and many of these also make great hostess gifts as well. As for this year, here is what I suggest… Read More

Teen and Tween Gift Ideas

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

By Guest Blogger Melissa Kinsley

Let’s face it—buying gifts for teens/tweens can make any mom as surly and emotional as her teenage daughter. That twitch in your eyelid is not just caused by the simple fact that she has become incredibly picky and difficult to please. It also stems from the sheer fact that your huge outlay of cash is disproportionate to the number of packages under the tree. It’s enough to make you long for the days when she ignored your gift and played with the wrapping paper it came in.

To overcome that “reindeer in headlights” feeling, here are a few teen/tween gift ideas that cross a lot of categories and a wide range of prices: Read More

Gift Ideas for the Teachers on Your List

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

By TMoM Team Member Kristie Touchstone

Log on to Fox 8 Morning News at 9:30am today to see us present these items live with Shannon Smith on Mommy Matters! Be sure to check our "Gift Giving" category often (found under the Shopping section). We will be running blogs with many gift giving ideas over the next few weeks for everyone on your list and you won't want to miss these blogs!

Teachers do so much for our children and with all that goes on during the school year; the holiday season seems to be the perfect time to shower them with our appreciation. So what’s the problem? We don’t always know what they already have or what they could use. I have never been a teacher, but from what I have heard, they cherish every gift that they receive. However, I think I can safely say that teachers most likely have plenty of ornaments, coffee mugs and apple-related items.  Read More

Shop Lara’s Favorite Things for the Holidays!

Monday, November 19, 2012

By Guest Blogger Lara Carpenter

Halloween. Done. School Fallfest. Check. Ready for Thanksgiving. Sort of. For many of us, fall and the winter holidays are filled with seemingly nonstop days of parties and events. Office parties. Family gatherings. Social events. Evenings out on the town. My advice: start the planning (and fun!) for lots of holiday clothes even before Santa arrives.

Lara’s Favorite Things offers fun, hip jeans, dresses, jewelry, bags and accessories for women. Best of all, many holiday fashions, including cocktail dresses, are available from Lara’s Favorite Things as Practically Yours rentals. Join us for Lara’s Favorite Things Holiday Open House on December 1st and keep reading for fabulous fashion tips this winter! PLUS - Mention that you read about Lara’s Favorite Things on Moms on Main, and you’ll receive 20% off any one item. Offer cannot be combined with other discounts. Good through December 22. Read More

Ace: A Little Bit of Everything You Need Under One Roof

Sunday, November 18, 2012

By Guest Blogger Betsy Brown, co-owner of Cloverdale and North Greensboro Ace Hardware stores

It’s that time of year again to run a story on our favorite local family owned hardware – Cloverdale Ace Hardware in Winston-Salem, and North Greensboro Ace Hardware located in the Village at North Elm in Greensboro! Now that Halloween has passed, it is time to look forward to the holiday shopping season! The Christmas showrooms are set-up in both stores and ready for you to come shop!

We have several items on sale that will get your shopping “To Do List” into a “Done List”! Read More

Top 10 Hottest Toys for the 2012 Holiday Season

Thursday, November 15, 2012

By Guest Blogger Lisa Witherspoon, author of The Golden Spoons blog

With the holidays quickly approaching, I started doing some research this week to get some ideas for Christmas lists. I found out that many retailers publish a "Hottest Toys for Christmas 2012" list in September! Since I wasted spent so much time looking over these lists, I thought I would share my findings with you.

I kind of took all the online lists I looked at and compiled them into a slightly more succinct Top 10 list. So according to Amazon.com, Target, Kmart, Walmart, and BestToysGuide.com, here are the 10 toys that every kid is going to want for Christmas this year. (And the ones you and your kids will likely be seeing advertised every time you turn on Disney or Nickelodeon for the next month!) Read More

Hip Chics….A Unique Boutique

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

By Guest Blogger Janie Budd

Faith, family, friends are the important things that resonate with us during the Holiday season. These are also the things that Kristina Prysiazniuk uses as the anchor of her business, Hip Chics, a unique gift boutique in the heart of Clemmons, NC. Hip Chics has been serving the gift-giving needs of the community for over five years, and has become the go to store for many shoppers looking to purchase a gift or a special item for themselves. There are many things that make Hip Chics stand out as a desirable shopping destination, such as the fact that you can park right in front of the store, come in and be greeted like family by friendly employees who are there to make sure your shopping experience is easy and enjoyable, and have your gifts wrapped for you at no extra charge!

During the holidays you will see the store adorned with whimsical Christmas decorations! There are lots of ornaments to choose from as well as holiday platters, door hangers carved from wood and painted with your family name or initials, as well as many more items that will bring warmth and cheer to any home! Read More

E-Reader, Book or Tablet. What’s Your Read?

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

I love books. Real books. Books with pages I can smell (and I do sniff them often). I love holding books; flipping through books; browsing new and used bookstores; receiving books as gifts; giving books as gifts; sharing and borrowing books; selling, trading and swapping books; and lining my bookshelves with none other than…books!

So when my husband hinted last year that he wanted to try an e-reader, I cringed. He and I swap books all the time and I wasn’t ready to give that up. But it made sense (and dollar savings) for him to have one, and now he’s hooked. I, on the other hand, am still having a hard time accepting such a switch. What about you? Read More

Triad Boutique Celebrates 5th and 3rd Anniversary

Monday, August 27, 2012

By Guest Blogger Laura Ellison

As Splurges is poised to celebrate the 5th Anniversary in Greensboro and the 3rd Anniversary of the store at the Factory in Downtown Kernersville, they want to indulge their loyal customers knowing that their continued patronage is key to Splurges’ success.

Greensboro Splurges will kick off their Anniversary celebration on Labor Day, Monday September 3rd and will continue thru Sunday, Sept. 9th. Shoppers that spend $25 before tax will receive a fabulous gift bag that contains an exclusive jewelry piece, a cornflower blue scarf, and notecard designed by the owner’s father Artist Bill Coyne, all while supplies last. Splurges exclusive designer, Liquid Time & CO, will have rare vintage blue glass pieces. Starbucks will have complimentary coffee for shoppers from 9:00am to 11:30am. Read More

The Importance of a Thank You

Tuesday, July 03, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

Here are the facts – yes, thank you notes are often redundant when you have already thanked someone in person. Yes, they are a pain to write. Yes, they are time consuming. Yes, it is easier to send an email than waste a stamp. But I firmly believe that hand-written thank you notes should be sent as often as possible. I tend to have the “old school” opinion that receiving a thank you note in the mail shows that the recipient was genuinely touched by your gift. It shows an appreciation for the time spent in choosing that perfect gift. It also sets a good example for your kids.

One topic that seems to be up for discussion when it comes to thank you notes is children’s birthday parties. It seems that the new trend is to open gifts after the party. For this reason, I feel that it is very considerate to send thank you notes since the giver did not see the child open it.  Read More

Fun Idea: My Favorite Things Party

Monday, May 28, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

I have a neighbor who loves to entertain, and just recently she hosted a "My Favorite Things" party. I thought the idea was so clever that I couldn't wait to share it with friends and TMoM readers. Yet little did I know, it's become quite the popular girls' night out alternative, and people are blogging about it like crazy with ideas and inspirations found on Pinterest.

The idea for the party actually originated from Oprah's popular My Favorite Things show, and it's a cute way to entertain with your friends, or as an alternative to the usual bunco, supper club or book club get-togethers. Here's how it works: Read More

Trending in the Triad

Thursday, April 19, 2012

By Guest Blogger Tammy Stang of Score More Sports Collectibles

A few months ago, I traveled to my home state of Rhode Island to visit my mother in the hospital. I stayed for a week and my father and I practically lived there. One take away I had from my time up there was a fascination with a brand of jewelry called Alex and Ani. These charmed bangles were worn by almost all of the nurses as well as my family members who came to visit that week. I decided to learn more about Alex and Ani during my visit to Rhode Island, as my curiosity peaked with the popularity of these bangles.  Read More

Be Inspired by Amy

Friday, March 23, 2012

By Guest Blogger Beth Mack

Creative. Unique. Original. These words describe the floral designs of Amy Lynne Originals. Located at 908 Burke Street in downtown Winston-Salem, Amy Lynne Originals is a colorful studio filled with inspiration.

Meet Amy – Owner Amy Dunlap began her work in floral design over 20 years ago. During that time, she worked for numerous florists, including the Walt Disney World Florist. There she arranged flowers for Disney weddings and conventions, as well as the floral displays for the prestigious Grand Floridian Hotel. Amy’s education includes a B.S. in Horticulture and a Masters in Agriculture. These degrees provide her with extended knowledge when it comes to variety selection, flower quality, and growing.

Spring is a great time to treat yourself and the ones you love to flowers! Amy Lynne Originals will be offering: Read More

Books for Every Occasion

Monday, January 02, 2012

By Guest Blogger, Nikki Francis

Ever find yourself wondering how to give loved ones something different than a gift card, or more memorable than a standard Hallmark greeting for special or life changing occasions?

As a teacher and new mom, I find myself savoring moments where I am able to read and discuss picture story books and their messages with my kids and students.   These books are often able to bridge unseen communication gaps and convey important life experiences to children.  Some of the authors are new, others have been around for decades, and some have even passed, but their picture story books and the messages expressed are enduring and hopefully endearing (even for adults . Below is a sampling of my favorites.  Hopefully you can enjoy these books as I have, and will choose to share others that have a special meaning to you in some way so that this list is always growing.    Read More

Stockings Made Special

Thursday, December 15, 2011

By Guest Blogger Kelly Gunzenhauser

My husband and I have very different memories of our Christmas stockings. For him, stockings were where the batteries for his toys showed up. For me, stockings saved me from the letdown of opening the last present. Presents are done…but Hey! There are stockings to open still! And yes, there were batteries in there, but also one or two special things, and always some really good candy to snack on. As Santa gets ready to stuff stockings this year, here are some ideas for him to think about.  Read More

The Best Gift of the Season

Monday, December 12, 2011

By Rachel Hoeing

Rachel is currently on a leave of absence from the website.  She was kind enough to send us this blog to run today in hopes that our readers will use this holiday season to reach out to the ones they love.  If you decide to give this gift to someone, please leave a comment below. I know it will make her day!  ~ Katie

Christmas is just a few weeks away.  Even if you think your gift list is complete, I have one more suggestion for you. I have a gift idea that will be a treasure for anyone and everyone you love. The best part - it is completely free. Read More

10 Money Saving Tips This Holiday Season

Thursday, December 08, 2011

By Guest Blogger Ashley Walkup, author of the blog Embracing Beauty

Christmas is great for spending time with friends and family, as well as giving gifts. Unfortunately, too many times, though, people don't properly plan for it and they end up making a list of money mistakes. The key to avoiding a holiday season that leaves your bank account in the red is to start planning early. Here are my top 10 money saving tips to help you steer clear of holiday debt and to get a good financial start to the new year: Read More

Holiday Shopping Check List

Monday, December 05, 2011

Sponsored by RayLen Vineyards & Winery

It’s the busy season and we all have lists we’re checking twice. But which list would you rather check off? List One: 1) Going to the mall, 2) Putting gas in the car, 3) Hiring a sitter for the kids, 4) Navigating through traffic, 5) Finding a parking lot, 6) Standing in long lines. Or List Two: 1) Shopping with RayLen Vineyards, 2) Pouring a glass of wine, 3) Choosing a holiday sampler for just $29.99, 4) Having it shipped to a friend or yourself, and 5) Taking a quiet moment to savor it all? Read More

Holiday Gift Ideas for Kids (Ages 3 - 11)

Saturday, December 03, 2011

By Katie Moosbrugger

It's the last day of our Gift Giving week! Click here to catch up on all our past gift idea blogs, and stay tuned because we have more holiday shopping posts coming up, such as how to stay on budget during the holidays and last-minute stocking stuffer ideas! Today I highlight gifts I discovered while out shopping and cruising around the Internet - some of which are being called the hottest toys on the market this year. I picked  toys I thought looked pretty cool, but of course the real test is always decided by our kids. Just about every toy listed below can be found at Toys R' Us or on Amazon.com, but some are also found locally at Toys & Co and Kaplan Early Learning Company as noted below- so shop local if you can! Happy shopping! Read More

Holiday Gift Ideas for Tweens & Teens

Friday, December 02, 2011

By Guest Blogger Kristen Daukas, author of the blog Four Hens and a Rooster

Remember when your child’s list to Santa was thicker than the phonebook? When Disney’s favorite Princess or Nick Jr's favorite handyman could save the day for Christmas bounty? Those long lists have been replaced by much shorter ones that primarily involve cash and gift cards. If you’re like me, you want to give something more than “just” a gift card but what items are on the “must have” list for our Teens and Tweens? Read More

Holiday Gift Ideas for Babies and Toddlers

Thursday, December 01, 2011

By Shannon Ford, Triad Moms on Main

What to get the cutest kid on your list?  I am torn with this each and every year with my own toddler son, as well as my friend's young kids.  I want something personalized, unique, educational, fun, simple, affordable, and elaborate all rolled up into one. Hopefully this list will provide you with that perfect "go to" gift for the babies or toddlers on your list.

And don't forget to look back at all the other gift idea posts we've run this Gift Giving Week week, including Personalized Holiday Gift Ideas for Mom and Dad, 20 Holiday Gift Ideas Under $20, and Personalized Holiday Gift Ideas for Kids and Teens, and Holiday Gifts for the Men in Your Life. Plus there's more to come...stay tuned! Happy shopping! Read More

Holiday Gifts for the Men in Your Life

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

by Kristen Bagwell, Triangle Moms on Main

For some reason, it's always difficult to come up with gift ideas for the men on my list. Either they "don't need anything" (my dad) or say something like "oh, I'll like whatever you get me" Not exactly helpful...but the list below may give you some ideas. These are unique and sometimes silly items that will be conversation pieces if nothing else, and most of them are under $25.

And don't forget to look back at all the other gift idea posts we've run this Gift Giving Week week, including Personalized Holiday Gift Ideas for Mom and Dad, 20 Holiday Gift Ideas Under $20, and Personalized Holiday Gift Ideas for Kids and Teens. And there's more to come...stay tuned! Happy shopping! Read More

Personalized Holiday Gift Ideas for Kids and Teens

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Written by Rachel Hoeing

If you happen to be reading this blog early today, turn on Fox 8 Morning News to see TMoM share some of these items live with Shannon Smith at 9:30am. Rachel is always looking out for the cutest, most unique gifts and personalized gifts rank among her favorite. You'll remember she just ran this post featuring personalized items for moms and dads. For today's post she pulled together a variety of personalized gift ideas for kids and teens. We hope this list inspires you. And stay tuned for the rest of the week as we highlight other favorite gifts for the season. ~ Katie Read More

20 Holiday Gift Ideas Under $20

Monday, November 28, 2011

By the TMoM team

Welcome to GIFT GIVING WEEK!  All week long we will have holiday gift ideas for anyone and everyone on your list.  Don't forget to read Rachel's blog on personalized gift ideas for moms and dads (more personalized gifts for kids and teens will be featured tomorrow!), and also visit our Gift Giving Category for classic ideas from last season. 

Many times at Christmas we hear ourselves saying, "I would love to just get her a little something!"  But for the little somethings, you still want those gifts to be special and unique.  We hope these ideas today will give you a jump start on presents for teachers, hairdressers, babysitters, neighbors, and more!

Below are 20 fabulous gift ideas, many of which are from businesses local to the Triad and North Carolina. Have fun perusing our list, and if you have other "under $20" gift ideas to share, leave a comment below. Later in December we'll feature last minute stocking stuffer ideas with even more fun "under $20 gifts" ideas! Read More

Personalized Holiday Gift Ideas for Moms and Dads

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

By Rachel Hoeing

I've been on the hunt for unique gift ideas this season.  I am always one to lean toward something personalized because it shows that a lot of thought was put into the gift.  In addition, it seems that people rarely purchase personalized items for themselves, so it is always a special treat to receive one. 

If you happen to be reading this blog early today, turn on Fox 8 Morning News to see TMoM show some of these items live with Shannon Smith at 9:30am.  I tried to collect a variety of price ranges for this list, so I hope these ideas will inspire you and help you fill in some ideas on your gift list!  And keep checking back to our website because we will have MORE gift ideas after the Thanksgiving Holiday! Read More

A Hidden Gem for Holiday Shopping ... The Bee's Nest!

Friday, November 04, 2011

By Guest Blogger, Betsy Brown

Now that Halloween has passed, it is time to look forward to the holiday shopping season. One stop that should be on your list is Cloverdale Ace Hardware and the Bee’s Nest. If you have read the blogs on TMOM in the past, or if you are already a frequent customer of this great hardware store then you know all about the amazing assortment they carry in not just hardware, paint and lawn and garden but within their unique boutique area just inside the front door. This hidden gem of a boutique offers you items not found in the mall or other mainstream shopping venues.

Plus if you print out this post and bring it to Cloverdale Ace Hardware, you will get $10 off your $30 purchase!!!  Offer is good through December 15th.
 Read More

2011 Choice Winner: Hip Chics Boutique

Saturday, April 30, 2011

By Katie Moosbrugger

Here’s a challenge you can’t pass up: Try and leave empty handed after a visit to Hip Chics Boutique in Clemmons. Go on, I dare you. Believe me, it won’t be easy. But I’m guessing most of you already know this since Hip Chics was voted “Favorite Gift Shop” among our readers in the 2011 Choice Awards!

No matter your age (from grown-ups to tweens to toddlers), Hip Chics has something enticing for you. From jewelry, to bags and totes, monogrammed gifts, collegiate and seasonal items, and inventory from local and national designers – your quest to find that perfect gift has never been easier or more fun. Read More

Valentine's Day Gift Ideas

Thursday, February 10, 2011

By Katie Moosbrugger

I was inspired to write this blog after viewing that ridiculous ad on TV for the Vermont Teddy Bear. Do you know which one I'm talking about? It pops up around Valentine’s Day every year, and each time I see it I gag a little more. If you haven't seen this ad, click here to view You Tube's version. I mean, seriously?  Do women our age actually want to receive this $49 teddy bear as a gift from their significant other? Do they truly want to wear a matching outfit with their stuffed animal? And are some men so clueless that they actually think this is a good gift?

If the Vermont Teddy Bear is not something that floats your boat, maybe you'll find some of the ideas listed below a little more appealing. There are only four days left to plan a special day for your loved ones, so hopefully some of these suggestions will spark something for you! Read More

The “No Gift” Birthday

Friday, February 04, 2011

By Guest Blogger Stefanie Moore, author of The Moore Family blog

My kids are like a lot of kids, they want for nothing. They have toys in the playroom and in their bedrooms and in the living room. Every toy bin is overflowing. They are fortunate to have everything they need and more.

Every year our house is bombarded with new toys and gifts for each birthday and Christmas. Whenever we had birthday parties for our kids we would arrive home with a carload full of stuff. Half of the toys wouldn’t even get played with because they would get shoved to the back of the closet or the bottom of the toy box. It all seems so excessive. That’s why my husband and I made a decision a few years ago. We decided to start asking our kid’s birthday party guests NOT to bring gifts to their parties. Read More

What's In Your Stocking?

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

By Katie Moosbrugger

Today is my stocking-stuffer-shopping day! I usually stress out about a day like this because I'm either already over budget or just plain out of ideas. Not this year. I did some digging at a couple of my favorite Triad shops, and chatted with friends who are much more organized than me with their holiday shopping. And now I'm armed with a list of some cute, some silly, and some practical gift ideas for all!

So what did I discover to be some of the hottest stocking stuffers in the Triad? Keep reading to find out! Read More

‘Tis the Season for Alternative Gifts!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

By Guest Blogger Rebecca Albertson, author of Traveling With Mercy blog. (This article was originally printed in the December 2010 edition of Forsyth Woman Magazine).

Many of us find ourselves in a quandary as we enter the holiday giving season. We have friends and family members to buy gifts for, but our friends and family might just have everything they could ever need. We’re blessed to live in a materialistically wealthy nation, and giving one more nifty gadget to Uncle Bob can seem repetitive or lacking in genuine gift-giving spirit.

Meanwhile, most of the world lives in poverty. Men and women struggle to provide enough food or clean water or medicines for their families. We’re sent conflicting messages in the media. On one hand, we’re told to care for the poor among us, and on the other hand, we’re told to spend as much as our credit cards will allow on the next technological must-have. Read More

Last Minute Gift Ideas for Dad

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

By Winston-Salem Guest Blogger Ann Urban

Running out of ideas for what to get Dad for Christmas? Rush tickets? That’s a maybe, but be ready to fork over big bucks for good seats. A watch? But does he really want another watch when he loves the one he already has with the worn band. Another tie? Please, stop! This year, give Dad something he’ll really enjoy and support a local business or school at the same time.

Here are some gift ideas that are sure to make Dad smile on Christmas morning. Best of all, you can purchase any of these last-minute gifts without ever leaving your home or office.  Read More

Gift Idea: Puzzibits

Thursday, December 09, 2010

By Rachel Hoeing

Still need another gift idea for your children, nieces, nephews, or friends?  I've got it!  Puzzibits are great for boys and girls of almost age, and as a bonus, you can purchase them at a discount if you place an order of $50 or more. Read More

Gift Idea: Cap-A-Cooz!

Monday, December 06, 2010

By Rachel Hoeing

I have found the perfect, unique, locally made product that will be sure to make someone on your gift list smile! The Cap-A-Cooz is such a fun gift idea; you start to forget that it is actually a product that is useful as well. Plus, right now they have a Christmas sale on the online store where you can receive 20% OFF!  Read More

Last Minute Neighborly Gifts

Saturday, December 04, 2010

By Katie Moosbrugger

It seems every Christmas I make my list of gifts, check it twice, and then manage to add a gazillion additional gifts– and dollars – to our family’s holiday budget. While it’s always well worth it in the spirit of giving, it’s also nice to have some last minute (and cheap) gift ideas on-hand!

Not everyone does neighbor gifts, I realize, and sometimes the best neighbor gifts are simple holiday wishes. But there’s always the chance you receive a gift and want to offer one in return. So, I asked around and scoured the Internet to find some cute ideas that are not only easy and inexpensive, but all fun to make (some with your kids too)!  Read More

Holiday Gift Ideas for Teachers

Friday, December 03, 2010

By Courtney Tucker, author of www.aisforbeautiful.com

At a loss for what to purchase for your children's teachers this year?  Here are a few ideas from loyal reader, Courtney ...

I always get lots and lots of lotion, mugs, hot cocoa, and notepads for Christmas.  If you are going to go this route I would suggest adding a personal touch to the gift such as including a personalization on the notepad (Vistaprint is a very inexpensive source). Read More

Holiday Gift Ideas for Teens and Tweens

Monday, November 29, 2010

By Rachel Hoeing

The number one gift requested by most tweens and teens is definitely CASH! This is especially true for boys. Yes, it is boring for you, but fun for them. A prepaid VISA gift card works well, too. But, if you are like me and really love to shop and give a tangible item, I have gathered a list of ideas below to suit many different price ranges. I asked a few moms who have children ages 11-17, as well as some former students of mine in the same age range, and they gave me some terrific ideas!  Below are items that you can buy for your own children, or even distant relatives you may not know well! Some of these are perfect ideas for baby-sitters as well. Read More

My Favorite Holiday Gift

Friday, November 26, 2010

By Rachel Hoeing

In true spirit of the holidays, I am honoring this Black Friday with a gift idea post!  I am sure most of you have seen this item, but I wanted to highlight it because it was one of my favorite gifts last year.  My mom gave this Hallmark Recordable book to my children last Christmas.  She gave them this version of "The Night Before Christmas" as an early gift on Christmas Eve.  When the kids opened the present, they were ready to throw it aside as a "boring book."  But, Nana had them sit next to her, as she opened the cover and pressed the button.  Instead of hearing an anonymous voice read this story to them, it was Nana herself!  The children were glowing with excitement.  They listened intently to the recording and turned the pages as Nana's voice read to them.  Read More

Gift Ideas for Teachers

Monday, November 15, 2010

By Rachel Hoeing

Teachers might as well be the target of Donna Summer’s song “She Works Hard for the Money.” Teachers put in a full day of work inside the school walls, but also spend hours upon hours planning, grading, and assessing at home as well. We all want to show them our appreciation at the holidays. Even if you are low on money this year, a handmade card or treat from the student is always cherished. I have a few favorite gifts from all price ranges that I received throughout my years of teaching. I hope these ideas are helpful as you make your gift lists this year. Read More

PJs for A Cure: Extra Sweet Dreams

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

By Guest Blogger, Amy Takacs

Not only is this a fabulous gift idea for girls, boys, and ladies, but you will be donating to a terrific cause. Keep reading for all the info on how to shop and give at the same time! ... Rachel Hoeing

As a Mom, we all get a little Google-obsessed when it comes to our child’s health. I was no exception when my youngest daughter was diagnosed with Type 1 (Juvenile) Diabetes just this April. At the young age of six, my “Extra Sweet” girl as I call her was sentenced to a life of daily pricks and insulin shots. While I call her Extra Sweet, she did not contract this disease from eating too much sugar. Her body no longer produces insulin like yours and I do. But, we’ll save the medical lesson on the difference in Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes for another blog entry. Read More