Freckles in April: November 2012

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Gift Guide: $5 and Under!

Last year Janssen and I put together a $5 Gift Guide for the holidays because she was invited to all these Favorite Things/Under $5 parties (and I was not) and we got to talking about how difficult it can be to find good stuff in the $5 and under category. We had a blast coming up with our guides and pretty much the moment we published our posts we decided to do it this year as well. We even got RA in on it this time around! We each came up with 20 ideas so hop around and see what the other girls found!

The key to giving inexpensive gifts is presentation. A couple colored pencils wrapped with twine or a pretty ribbon and a gift tag feels special even if you only spent $3. The dollar store carries all kinds of ribbon options for cheap and I love using basic office supply string tags as gift tags.

1. Salt Dough Ornaments (DIY - practically free)

The words "salt dough" probably conjure images of lopsided, obviously homemade creations. But a lot of the ones I've seen around the web are downright gorgeous. Odds are good you've already got all the ingredients in your pantry (1 cup flour, 1/2 cup salt, 1/2 cup water). Pick up a stamp or two and some ink and you'll have gorgeous handmade ornaments in no time.

2. New Dish Towels ($.79 apiece)

Dish towels aren't meant to be a long term investment. They get gross fast and it's a good idea to replace them at least once a year. Wrap up 3 or 4 of these Ikea dishtowels with a ribbon and you've got a gift that hits that happy place between pretty and practical.

3. Glow Bracelets ($1)

We have a friend who always has glow bracelets on hand. She buys them at the dollar store and brings them everywhere and they are so. much. fun. We brought them camping. We wore them for night volleyball. She busts them out when our kids are bored. Brilliant.

4. StarWalk App ($2.99)

I'm cheating a bit here since I included this one in my Valentine's Day gift guide earlier this year. But that doesn't change the fact that this app is AWESOME and would be a super cool gift.

5. Applecore Cord Wrangler ($1.99-$4.99 depending on the size)

RA actually pointed me toward these last year and I think they're so awesome. Who DOESN'T have a tangled set of headphones on their desk at all times?

6. Triangle Peg Game ($2.69)

Have you ever played this game at Cracker Barrel?? It's crazy addictive and so much fun.

7. Rolling Pin Measuring Rings ($2.95 on sale from $8.95)

This is one of those things that I never think about until a recipe is like, "Roll dough 1/4 inch thick" and I bust out my ruler because I am completely incapable of visualizing what 1/4 inch looks like. And what if my dough is 1/4 inch on the edges but not in the middle?? If only I had those rolling pin ring things! 

8. e.l.f. Mineral Eyeshadow ($3)

I love e.l.f. makeup. It's great quality for the price. The Celebrity and Wild shades of mineral eyeshadow are in my daily rotation.

There's a whole $3 gift section on the site! I love this set of 3 polishes (comes in several different colors). 

10. Chopsticks
11. Asian Dipping Dish

My husband was born and raised in Hawaii then served a 2-year mission for our church in Japan. He eats many of his meals with chopsticks and we eat a LOT of Japanese food around here. I love these chopsticks and dipping dishes!

12. Rubber Watch ($4.86)

Erica has this! Affordable, stylish and useful! I love a good white watch.

13. Decorative Mirror ($1.99)

10"x10" wood mirror (I think this is like a Microsoft Paint representation of the mirror?).

14. Tulip Metallic Fabric Paint ($3.99 at JoAnn's)

For your crafty friends. Strangely, I get a LOT of use out of my gold metallic fabric paint.

15.Washi Tape ($3)

So cute. This shop has lots of different options for under $5.

16. Fun highlighters ($4.99)

I use highlighters all. the. time. I couldn't even tell you for what. I love this pack of 5! You probably can't tell from the tiny picture but they all have fun prints on them. Because, you know. Why not?

17. Notecards ($4.99 and under at Kinko's)

I love to have a pack of blank notecards on hand at all times. They're perfect for thank-you notes and last minute birthday cards and whatever else. Kinko's had a bunch of different cute options for $4.99 and under.

18. Loose Knit Scarf ($3.99 on sale from $12)

A winter staple in 3 easy to wear neutrals.

19. Double Blossom Belt ($5 on sale)

A little holiday glitz and glam for cheap.

20. Metallic Clutch ($5 on sale)

I'm a huge fan of cheap fancy clutches for nights out when all I have to bring is a credit card and some chapstick. I love this metallic croc one!

Don't forget to check out last year's guide for even more ideas then hope on over to Janssen and RA's blogs to see their picks!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

Since our new house has such a great open living area I volunteered to host Thanksgiving this year. Aaron's new thing is smoking and barbequing meats so he happily took care of the turkey while I did mashed potatoes, rolls, and haupia pie. My mom took care of the stuffing, cranberry sauce, and a few other things and we had ourselves a really wonderful dinner with my parents, my sister and her fam, and my grandma.

When I texted my sister and asked if she wanted to come over and help me string marshmallows she, bless her, did not tell me I was a crazy person. She popped right over and even came up with an easier and less sticky system for getting them all strung. 

Everlane tee, Old Navy necklace, oooold Gap cords

 Because I'm sure you're curious- this is what I wore to Thanksgiving dinner.

Roses from our front yard! We are absurdly proud of the fact that we have roses and they are blooming.

Hope you had a wonderful day as well! This is by far my favorite time of year. Thanksgiving is always lovely. We've had Christmas music playing for a while now and I'm almost done wrapping our gifts. I think we're going to go get a tree on Monday (crossing fingers it lasts until Dec 25 without burning down our house) and put lights up on our house next week. Last year our lights were kind of a disaster so we're determined to have decent lights this year. Are you getting ready for Christmas too? We can't wait!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Stuff I Like Lately

I've hardly gone shopping at all in months but now that the seasons are changing I'm starting to get the itch just a little bit. Here are a few things I'm loving lately-

Zara Polka Dot Blouse - $59.90

I found this blouse while browsing on my phone and was kind of frantically zooming in thinking, "I think I might LOVE this top." I pulled it up on my computer when I got home and, sure enough. Love. Sadly more than I'd spend on a trendy, polyester piece. Especially because I've heard Zara's quality can be iffy. Can anyone confirm? Deny?

Everlane Tops - $15 - $80

Have you heard of Everlane? Basically, they sell nicer stuff without the middle man so prices are really reasonable. I have a couple of their tees and the fabric is so much nicer than my other tees. I got some of their men's shirts for Aaron and his brother for Christmas. This silk blouse is high on my list of classics I might be willing to shell out for. Someday.

ASOS dress - $49.25

I've never been a big fan of green but since dying my hair red I've come around. The shape and color of this dress are total multitaskers- you could dress it up or down and wear it just about any time of year. This is a serious contender for my Christmas dress.

Grey Dot TOMs - $54

Even Janssen, who dislikes TOMs, thinks these are cute. I checked their website for the first time in a very long while last week and was pleasantly surprised by all the new(ish) offerings. I love that they've taken their wedges into booties and strappy sandals.

Thanksgiving is almost here! My sister is in town for three whole weeks and my brother is coming home from his 2 year mission for our church in less than 2 weeks. I'm having a good month :)

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Open to Interpretation

No, hell hath not frozen over. It's me! Doing an OTI! I barely squeaked in under the deadline but I did it!

We decided age brings wisdom and Grace is minimally older than me so this was her choice.

via My Style Pill
So very fall-y!

Here's my take-

Muubaa jacket (via Hautelook), Old Navy button-down (men's clearance- $3!), AG jeans (via Hautelook), Boutique 9 booties (via Last Chance)
Don't look at my roots.

My booty pop in that first pic reminds me of this-

I'm not quite as fabulous as Hawkeye, but I'll get there.

Go visit Erica and Grace to see their interpretations!
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