Spreading Christmas Cheer

All week the kids and I have been baking up a storm. Cookies, cupcakes and candy have been tempting us with their yummy goodness.

Today we’ve delivered some of these sweet treats, but tomorrow morning will find us playing a bit of ding dong ditch on unsuspecting (and often grumpy) neighbors!

Spreading Christmas cheer is so much fun!

The Perfect Stocking(s) for Under $25!

Walmart is dedicated to helping families save money so we can bring home more for less this Christmas. To prove this, they sent me out with another challenge this week. My mission was to put together the perfect stocking with just $25. So, off I went with a gift card in hand to see what I could find.

I’ll admit that I was surprised to find that Walmart truly does offer all of the ingredients any family needs for fab filled stockings this holiday– from $1 candies and holiday activities to $5 DVDs.

Believe it or not, I put together a stocking for all six of my older kiddos for just under $25, TOTAL (pre-tax)! With all of the multi-pack items I was able to purchase this was quite easy to do, actually.

If you have yet to purchase your stocking “stuffing,” I invite you to take “The Perfect Stocking for Under $25”
challenge on your own and share with me how you created your stockings for your loved ones. I’m sure you’ll find that it’s certainly doable for anyone on your list!

Other great ideas for stocking stuffers::

Baby Bottle Pops and Juicy Drop Pops are a favorite treat around here! I think it’s kinda funny, really… even the twins can be seen sucking on that little bottle pop every now and again. They have no shame when it comes to their favorite candy!

Animal Planet Activity Kits are great for the kiddos whose mom isn’t exactly the best at organizing and creating fun activities. Ahem.

The 3D puzzle that is the Rubik’s Cube is a classic game that any one can enjoy. Okay, maybe not anyone… these little cubes frustrate me to no end. BUT, my kiddos love them!

Toy Haul For Our Adopted Family

Being a Walmart Mom has it’s perks, but I have to say that I am most excited by opportunities that help us give to those in need. This month, each of the Walmart Moms were given a $100 gift card to purchase some of this year’s top toys from Walmart for a charity of our choice. I actually chose to use the gift card to help shop for a specific family – a family of soon to be TEN, no less! Follow along as we choose items for this family of mostly girls… something certainly outside of our comfort zone. While we did go over $100 just a bit, I think we did pretty well.

I have been compensated for my time and efforts to create this post and video.

Walmart’s Top Toys :: Our Favorites

Are you looking for the perfect gift for some of those kiddos in your life? Well, I have some great ideas! Whether you need to find that one item for your nieces, nephews or your own little one still left on your shopping list, check out some of our favorites.

Paper Jamz have been a big hit here in the Young house. These paper-thin instruments are available in the form of guitars, drums and amplifiers and are easy enough for even my littlest guys to rock out!

The Leapster Explorer is, by far, our favorite LeapFrog product, thus far. With endless ways to play, the Explorer offers games and activities, as well as the option to download apps, videos and ebooks. I’m looking forward to adding the camera accessory so my kiddos can use the Explorer to capture pictures and video without stealing my phone or Flip!

Loopz is a fabulously fun memory game that challenges the reflexes of every member of the family. With seven ways to play, Loopz provides hours of entertainment.

Although I would highly recommend each of the items in this post, I have been compensated for my time and efforts to tell you about some of hottest toys this Christmas. Be sure you check out the rest of Walmart’s Top Toys!

Decorating for the Holidays

Preparing to decorate for Christmas always brings me such mixed feelings. It is so much work to pull out the boxes of decorations we have collected over the years, but I do love going through them year after year. Sifting through each box of homemade ornaments, white lights and colored lights, little nativity scenes, and garland, is sure to get us in the holiday spirit, but it’s such a conglomerate of different colors, with no real theme. That’s okay, though – I love the way the house looks decorated with items that bring so much joy as we think about all of the memories each item possesses.

I took a stroll through Walmart’s Christmas Shop, with a gift card in hand, to try to find a few new items to add to help us deck the halls. I tend to lean toward traditional colors and found a couple of great items at affordable prices.

I really like to hang wreaths… They are such a simple way to decorate. I’m thinking that this Pine Cone Wreath would bring a classic look to our front door.

Candles use to reside on our home’s every surface. Not so much anymore, being that we have lots of little pyros living with us. I like the idea of substituting wicked candles with flameless votives, especially when placed in a vase filled with cranberries or other festive fruit. No fire hazard to worry about and these little boogers can fool even the most observant guest.

Next shopping trip will result in new stockings for each member of our family. I plan to have them each personalized and, now that our family is complete, I can be sure that they will all match! What do you think of these?

Every year I purchase a new ornament for each of my children. Sometimes they represent a special event that took place during the year; sometimes they’re ornaments that just reminded me of a particular kiddo. This year I couldn’t go wrong with purchasing a couple of ornament sets.

Some day I may choose a theme for our decorations, filling our house with specific colors or some uniformity, but for now I enjoy adding little bits of goodness to our growing collection.

How do you decorate for Christmas?
Do you have a theme? Or, do you decorate as we do, with a little bit of everything?

I am a part of the Walmart Moms program and Walmart has provided me with the above mentioned gift card, as well as compensation for my time in creating this post. My participation is voluntary and opinions are my own.