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Family Traditions


Neighborly Love: Gifting for Those Next Door


Show your lovely neighbors some Christmas merriment with some easy homemade gifts! 

You don’t have to go present-crazy to show your neighbors a little holiday cheer! You can easily make a homemade gift such as baked goods or goodie bags! Stuck on gift ideas for your neighbors? These gifts are sincere, from the heart and inexpensive!   

5 Holiday Gifts for Your Neighbors 

Baked Goods 

Bake your neighbors something sweet and delicious for the holidays. Make mint cookies, eggnog pound cake, brownies, cupcakes or any other baked goods. Place in plastic containers and make it fancy by adding a bow and a gift tag! 

Jar Gifts 

Mason jars are a savior when it comes to trying to figure out what gift to give someone. You have a ton of options! You can make homemade lotions or body scrubs using real sugar and holiday-scented essential oil. Or you can layer ingredients for cookies or hot cocoa. You could also fill them with different holiday candies for munching! Add some cute décor like a sparkling red bow and a card. 

Homemade Recipe Books 

Compile a homemade recipe book with your favorite holiday recipes. From appetizers, main dishes to side dishes and desserts, give your neighbors the gift of holiday eats! Decorate the front with some festive holiday crafting. 

Holiday Goodie Bags

If you have some lunch bags lying around from sack lunches, you can easily transform them into goodie bags! Decorate the front and fill with candy, candy canes, cocoa mixes, a couple gift cards and more! 

A Meal on You 

The holidays can be completely hectic with all the shopping, parties, and cooking. Give your neighbors the gift of a meal on you! Cook them a casserole or lasagna and include reheating directions and let them know they should take off a night from holiday chaos and indulge in your meal that’s on the house! 

My Mother’s Ornament Tradition

OrnamenttraditionheaderAs a child, Christmas morning always began with my brother and I waking up before the sun came out to see what Santa brought us. Although Santa was great at always getting me the toys I wanted, there was always a gift under the tree I knew was from my mother and I couldn’t wait to open it. 

Every year since the day I was born, my mother gave me and my brother a special ornament to hang on the tree. And it was always meaningful. She put so much thought into it and I always got one every year. One of my favorites was in 2005 when my parents and I took a trip to Europe for the first time. For Christmas that year, my mother gave me a gorgeous Eiffel Tower ornament. In 2004, we took a family trip to Las Vegas where I fell in love with the Coca Cola store and of course, that year she gave me a sparkling Coca Cola ornament. 

In 2003, I lost my very best friend, my first pet who was a guinea pig named Little Dude, and for Christmas, mom gave me a lovely hand painted ornament in his memory. In 2008, she gave me an adorable camera ornament because of my love for photography. When I got engaged in 2012, she gave me and my husband an endearing ornament, and a stunning white glittery ornament in 2013 for our first married Christmas. She also gave me a few sweet ornaments for my first Christmas, and many more throughout the years. 

I never understood why she did this. I always just thought it was a fun family tradition. I got married last year three days before Christmas, on December 22, 2013. That Christmas, she came over with a huge storage box. I opened it and there rested all my ornaments for every year I’ve been alive, and then some. 

It was her plan all along, she said, to continue the tradition until her children got married. And when it was time for them to start their own lives, their own family. She had boxed up the ornaments from her home and given them to us so we could decorate our own tree with them and continue the tradition when we had children. 

It was a moment I’ll never forget. We hugged each other and cried joyful tears as I realized the love, the sincerity, and the thoughtfulness that was my mother. And together, husband included, we placed the ornaments on our tree in our home and reminisced. That 2013 Christmas felt different than all the rest and I can’t wait to introduce this special tradition to my own children. 

This Family Is


The Holderness family is back again, and this time they gave Meghan Trainor's "All About That Bass" a festive Thanksgiving twist.

In "All About That Baste," the family warns that they're "bringing butter back" so "don't try to wear those skinny britches, nah." Check out the video below!


Photo Credit: YouTube

How to Get Your New Year's Kiss

how-to-get-your-new-years-kiss-1New Year's Eve is just around the corner and with it, a sweet tradition.

With the coming of New Year's Eve, there is the question of whether or not (if we can stay up long enough) you will get the kiss that really rings in the New Year. Here are some ideas on how to get your New Year's kiss!


5 New Year's Eve Group Games

five-new-years-eve-group-gamesNew Years Eve is closer than you think. Planning on playing any New Year's Eve games? Here are some that will have you laughing through 2014!

New Years Eve is a time of celebrating and, of course, reflecting on the past year. Many of us will hit New Year's Eve parties, but there is more to do then just eat and drink! There are plenty of fun New Year's Eve games you can play as you ring in the New Year.