Friday, November 20, 2015

Friday Favorites :: The Christmas Edition

It's safe to say I did a really craptastic job at respecting the turkey this year. While I wish I could give the holiday a bit more TLC, I just can't. Christmas is calling my name, bringing with it some really fun ways to capture the season and make memories day in and out. In honor of the holliest jolliest time of year, today I'm sure with you simple ways to make the most of the holidays this year with fun challenges, beautiful photos and more.

With Black Friday less than a week away, I'm sure there are plenty of you planning your holiday shopping. The last Friday of November is the official start of Christmas and if you are going to keep your sanity, stick to your budget and enjoy the holiday, you need to be prepared. Emily over at Morning Motivated Mom has put together a Christmas Planner that will help keep all things holiday in check. From a gift list to budget page to menus to a printable calendar for November and December, everything you need is in this one pack. Visit her Etsy shop to pick up yours. Be sure to use code CHRISTMAS2015 and take $2 off.

If you've been a reader for any amount of time, you know I am a huge fan of bucket lists. With the busyness of the holiday, I wasn't sure I wanted to have one this year. But when we decided to say good-bye to Kringle our Elf, I thought I would put together a small list of things we'd like to do this Christmas. It's so simple that any family could accomplish the goals. The best part? You'll be making memories and having a blast crossing tasks off your list!

One of my goals for 2016 is to use my "real" camera more. I was gifted my Canon T3 a few years ago and because of pure laziness, I haven't used it since taking Connor's 2 1/2 year pictures. My iPhone is just quicker and easier, you know? But that's about to change. Beth of Our Pretty Little Girls has put together a December Photo Check List, giving me the chance to use my camera again.

Speaking of photos, I'm hosting the second annual Christmas Photo Challenge. It's perfect for snapping a simple glimpse of the holiday to share on Instagram. We did it last year and those who participated love it. Many shared that this was the first and only challenge they've been able to accomplish. I think that's because EVERYONE LOVES CHRISTMAS. The challenge kicks off December 1st so be sure to print out the checklist and get to snapping those pictures!

Do you take your little ones to visit Santa? We have and I'm hoping this year goes better than last year. Connor wanted NOTHING to do with Jolly Saint Nick, which broke my heart just a bit. He had just turned 2 and I think he was dealing with a touch of "stranger danger". He already knows what he is asking Santa for so I hope that's a positive sign. Either way, I'll have a photo of the occasion to share during our Santa Photo link-up. Starting December 10th, you can share you photo with Santa in our linkup.
Raise your hand if you think dressing your little ones is holiday clothing and adorable pajamas is the cat's meow? Me, too! I usually snag at least one pair from Leah with Love's shop Simply Made with Love and then make a "much needed" visit to Target to get a couple more pairs, specifically something footed because footed jammies keeps my baby boy a baby boy. Be sure to join me and a handful of other Chrsitmas pajama lovin' Mommas for our Christmas Pajama Party. Snap a photo or 5 and share them in IG on December 17th using the hashtag Christmasjamparty15.

Can you tell I'm a bit excited for Christmas? I have tons of plans and ideas and it's going to be the most magical Christmas yet. It helps a ton that Connor is just as excited as I am. I wouldn't know what to do if I had a grinch for a child. Check him into rehab for sure. I hope you can join us for at least one of our parties or challenges. It's going to be a blast and I can't wait to share our Christmas with you!

Happy Friday, friends!

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