Erin’s Very 1st Holiday Gift Guide & Giveaway

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Okay folks, the time has come for my very first holiday gift guide and giveaway. I have done product reviews and giveaways in the past but nothing ever like this. This is huge! I have so many awesome things that I can’t wait to share with you. No I wasn’t paid to do any of this. I am doing this because I love all of you and I love the products that I am sharing with you. Yes, some of them I was asked to review and blog about but I am only sharing the ones that I love and would use even if I wasn’t asked to write a review in the past. I am picky about which products I review and I only pick ones that I think will appeal to my readers and their families. After checking out all of these awesome items, make sure that you enter the contest below. There are a few free entries and a ton of other ones that you may need to work for. But it’s worth it. Whoever wins, will get something from every vendor or company on this list! Whether it’s an actual product, a discount code or a code for a freebie. I’m just giving you some ideas on gifts for you family, friends, teachers and anyone else that you give to during Christmas, Hanukkah, birthdays or any other holiday.

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First up is something that is for the adults on my page. Wine glasses! You guys all know by now that I love my wine.  I love drinking out of cute glasses too.  One day I was searching Etsy for teacher gifts and found Kelly, the owner of MADPainterVA. She has been my source of wine glasses for over a year now. I have purchased quite a few glasses for the kids teachers (hey I figure that if they have to teach one of my kids then they must need wine). I have purchased special ones for my friends and I have even ordered a special University of Delaware one for myself.  MADPainterVA has a ton to pick from on her Etsy page, but I have sent Kelly images (like my UD glass) and she just whips it up and within 2-3 weeks its on my doorstep. I also love that they are HUGE glasses, not tiny little sample ones. Here are some pictures of a few that I have ordered from her in the past. Oh and for all of you LuLaRoe lovers she has a glass for you too. MADPainterVA offers a ton of personalized, hand painted glassware, ornaments and more. Check out MADPainterVA now! You can find the perfect gift for almost everyone on your list.  Oh and while typing this up I just noticed that she has Five Nights at Freddy’s ornaments! I might have to go order  a few for the boys now since they are obsessed!

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Next up is Illumibowl, the motion-activated toilet night light.  Yes, I know it sounds funny but trust me it is pretty cool and becoming a pretty popular item.

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I love this product, especially since I live in a house of all boys. The Illumibowl was featured on Shark Tank recently and has become a huge hit. I have a sleepwalker (or a sleep pee’er is that even a word?). He likes to wake up and hit the bathroom in the middle of the night. The problem is, he never hits the bowl. But leaving the light on is a huge pain for the other kids (and my husband hates when lights are left on). So here comes the Illumibowl. You connect it to the side of your toilet and set the color feature (you pick one color or you can have it rotate) and when it senses motion in the bathroom, it turns on. The bowl now glows at night so the wonderful men/boys in your life can aim a little better at 3am. It’s a huge hit and I love their newer model (here’s my review from the last model: Illumibowl Review).  The new model attaches to the bowl a little easier and will stay in place better. Check out their video from their time on Shark Tank.

You can find the Illumibowl at their website Illumibowl.com, Amazon.com, Bed, Bath and Beyond and Walmart. For my wonderful readers, in case you don’t win, you can still get a great deal on the Illumibowl. Click here to order your own and use the discount code IRISHMAMA for a great deal.

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Another product that I have picked for you guys is called Kwik Stix.

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Sean loved these when I reviewed them awhile back (Kwik Stix Review). He loved painting but I hated the mess. But these are different. There’s no water, no paint brushes, just a clean Kwik Stix.  So now there’s no mess and they dry pretty darn quickly.

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Now that I have Owen in the painting stage, I was excited to pull these back out of my craft closet.  He loves them and I enjoy that there’s NO MESS!!! Since I did my last review on Kwik Stix, they have come out with some new products and you can purchase them in Target. I mean I know that we are all there a few times a week (don’t deny it, I run into you guys all of the time). These are a perfect as a stocking stuffer or just for your every day crafts.  Kwik Stix is giving our lucky winner two items.  The winner will receive a 6 pack of Metalix colors and a 6 pack of basic colors.  But remember you can find them online here, or at your local Target.

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One of my favorite things to do around the holidays is decorate. I love the way that my house feels when it’s clean and decorated for Christmas. It makes my house feel like a nice cozy home.

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I always buy garland and wreaths from Target or craft stores but I never have bought a real wreath. Last year I received one from Jen’s Wreaths and I loved it.

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The smell of this wreath was wonderful. It was so pretty and delivered in a wonderful box so it wasn’t smushed at all. You can read my review from last year here (Jen’s Wreaths) She sells wreaths, swags, centerpieces and the most adorable candy cane shaped wreaths too! And they are delivered right to your door in time for the holidays. I just ordered my traditional wreath the other day. I can’t wait until it arrives! My front door looks naked without it.  One lucky winner will receive both items below.  A gorgeous holiday swag as well as the traditional wreath. You can always head on over to her website and order any style today. Feel free to use her current promo code BLACKFRIDAY for 10% off plus free shipping

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When Owen started eating solids I knew that I wanted him to have real food! But I didn’t have time to make my own. Luckily around the time he was ready to eat, Beech-Nut came out with their 100% Natural Baby Food. They had wonderful flavors that weren’t just the gross combos that other baby food companies made. These were actually enjoyable and Owen loved them.  Plus they were so healthy for him. You can read all about their original products on my previous review here (Beech-Nut Review)

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Now Beech-Nut is selling Coldpurée pouches. It’s a new line of products available in select stores around the country.

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Beech-Nut is always innovating with the goal to make parents’ lives easier, so with convenience in mind, Beech-Nut’s nutritious food for babies is now hands-free. They still use the same unique cooking method as their Naturals and Organic jars – which they call the coldpuree method so you know that you are getting the exact same healthy food.  One lucky winner will receive the four pack pictured above! I was tempted to open them up for Owen, since they are perfect snacks for when we are on the go (aka at Target) but don’t worry, I saved them for you guys!

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Last but certainly not least is a new product from Auro Yoga.

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They sell a huge variety of yoga products from mats, to bags, clothing and a variety of other yoga accessories.  Their latest product is their beach and swim towel.

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I received one a few weeks ago but since it’s a little too chilly here in NJ I couldn’t test it out at the pool or the beach. But I did try it out after my showers. I absolutely love the over sized towel.  This will be perfect at the beach for the kids. I can use it to dry off more than one kid or I can set up down on the sand and have two kids sit for their snacks.  It’s huge!  It’s made out of a very suber absorbent microfiber so you will dry off quickly.

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You can find their products over at their website or on Amazon.  Just make sure that you use my discount code 2016ERIN to receive 20% off today!

So are you ready for the giveaway guys. Here’s what one lucky winner will receive:

GOOD LUCK!!!!!

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** Erin the Irish Mama was not compensated for these review, but I did receive free products to test out.  All opinions are my own **

This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. You understand that you are providing your information to the owner of this Facebook page and not to Facebook.

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Holiday Gift Guide

Hey folks, I know that it may seem a bit early, but the holidays are quickly approaching. Once Halloween ends everyone will have one thing on their minds – Christmas. Just this past week I noticed that some stores are full of Christmas lights and decorations already.  The toy sections are stocking up and I am already stressing about what to buy for the holidays.  I need gifts for my kids, family, teachers, etc. It’s the most wonderful time of the year, but it can also be the most stressful time. I would love to take some of that stress off of you by helping my readers out.

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I thought that this year I would make a list of some of my favorite items and share them with you. They might be small stocking stuffers or maybe just some great gifts for a teacher or friend. I would also love to showcase products that I have reviewed on my blog or items that I have purchased outside of blogging life, whether they were from Etsy, my friends or neighbors, or local shops.  There are so many things that I would love to share with you.

So here’s what I am asking, if you would like your product or company to appear in my Holiday Must Have’s, let me know.  Shoot me an email, text me, Facebook me, etc.   I am also trying to put together a big giveaway of all of the items too.  Don’t get too excited, I am not Oprah!

If you want to be included in my list and want to participate in the giveaway, I am accepting donations of one (or two) of your items from your company. If you are unable to do that, maybe you could create a specific freebie or discount code for the winner?  I know that I have many friends that have small businesses and I am including you guys too. Don’t think that this is just for the larger companies that I write about on the blog! The only requirement is that I have ordered from you in the past and I have used or tested your product. I have a list already in my mind and I will be reaching out to some of you shortly. But, if you have a product that you sell, make and I haven’t tried it yet, but would love to be included on the list/giveway, contact me ASAP so I can test it out. I only like to showcase items that I have experience with.  Remember, the more the merrier!

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Christmas with the Callaways

This post is only 2 months late, oops!  I thought that I posted it back on New Years!

Even though we have an extremely hectic life we still have found some time to squeeze in some fun this holiday season. It’s not always ideal and there may be fights, kicking, hitting and throwing of iPads (note… by the kids not me LOL).

I am so thankful that we had Owen, for a variety of reason.  One of the perks of having another boy is that we were able to experience the live experience of Thomas the Tank Engine.  I really did miss going to Strasburg, PA to see Thomas.  It’s always a wonderful day, we have been there so many times and each time has been a great experience for the boys.  This year was Owen’s first time.  He loved it.  And the older boys had an awesome time as well. I think that they forgot how much that they really enjoyed riding the train, and the gift shop. Of course, they loved the gift shop.  The kids haven’t played with the trains since they discovered the iPad but this year they HAD to buy stuff.  Of course, we gave in.

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We also had a great day picking out our tree. The first few years we used an artificial tree but I really wanted the tradition of going to a tree farm and chopping down a tree. I love it. Joey may disagree since he has to do the dirty work.

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After decorating the house for Christmas, we had a wonderful night celebrating with Ben and the second grade class during their Snowflake Spectacular.  They did an awesome job singing holiday songs!

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One night, my friend Wendi and I took the kids over to Shadybrook Farms in PA to see their awesome Christmas lights display!  Considering that we have 5 WILD and CRAZY kids in the car they did behave pretty well.  Wendi and I came prepared.  She brought presents and treats and I had a scavenger hunt for light displays.  It was an awesome night.

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In the midst of it all I had my 20th High School Reunion.  The St. Mark’s Class off 1995 ROCKS!  An awesome night with great friends!  It really was a wonderful night.

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Finally, on the 24th we had time to go and visit with the best Santa Claus in the world.  He is so sweet and kind and caring.  We have been to him every year for the past  7 years (even though I have a year or two without pictures)

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The kids had a wonderful Christmas.  We got to spend time with our families and it was great.  Despite some minor fights, they did have a great holiday. I just love seeing the smiles on their faces on Christmas morning.  Worth all of the stress and hassle.

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New Year’s Eve

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The only one who could hang with me until midnight!!!!

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 I hope that everyone had a nice and safe Christmas and New Years {and now a happy Groundhogs Day, Valentine’s Day, President’s Day and all of the other holidays that have passed since I originally typed out this email}!

Oh and Ben also celebrated his 8th Birthday recently… I will try and get a post up about that one shortly {hopefully before we hit Memorial Day}. I also have some posts coming on our blizzard, Cub Scouts Pinewood Derby Day, and a few other small ones coming soon. So keep on reading and check in often. I am trying to get all caught up!

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Silly McGilly

“Top of the morning to you, the name is McGilly!”

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Did you know that we are already 1/2 to St. Patrick’s Day! Are you ready? No, well it’s time to start planning now.

Now is the perfect time to start planning and here’s a great little gift for you!  Silly McGilly.

So who is Silly McGilly?  Well he is just one of the cutest little leprechauns around.  Silly loves enjoys playing tricks on children throughout the St. Patrick’s Day season.

How does it work? Well just read his story with your children, then place Silly by the window each night.  The real Silly will come play a trick in your home (or classroom).  The next morning your kids will enjoy seeing the tricks that Silly did while they were sleeping.   Silly can make an appearance for just one night, a week or the entire St. Patrick’s Day season!  You decide.

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Now the kids saw the Silly McGilly book and doll the other night so of course we read it right away.  Ben was so excited to put Silly in his window.  The next morning he woke up and noticed that Silly messed up all of his stuffed animals!  Every night he asks about Silly.  He is still in our window!  Tomorrow the boys will wake up to a new trick!  I don’t know if I will be able to put him away until St. Patrick’s Day.  Ben might not want to give him up.

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So would you want your own Silly McGilly box set? Head on over to SillyMcGilly.com to purchase your own book and doll today!   Plus while you are there check out all of the sample tricks and activities that you can do with your children!  From 9/10/14 through 10/17/14 in celebration of 1/2 way to St. Patrick’s Day we are offering autographed copies of the book.  Please specify in special notes if you would NOT like your book autographed.   

But that’s not all.  I will be giving away one set as well!  Enter below for your chance to win your very own Silly McGilly for your family!

I am writing this post as a personal product review. I did not receive compensation for this review but I did receive a sample product.  All of the opinions stated above are my own. 

Why Can’t the Easter Bunny be More Like Santa?

Why on earth does the Easter Bunny have to bring chocolate and candy each year? I mean seriously can’t he be cool like Santa and bring just toys and games?  My closet is still overflowing with candy from Valentine’s Day (and probably a few stragglers from Halloween).  Plus the kids don’t react the same when I tell them that the Easter Bunny won’t come if they aren’t good.   Santa, he has all the power over the kids, doesn’t he? 

My Peep Cake (thanks Janine for the inspiration)

But I guess that it is all of my fault, I do help the Easter Bunny fill up those baskets. I think how excited my kids are going to be every Easter morning when they see their chocolate filled baskets and I can’t help it.  Then about an hour later {after they have eaten through half the basket}, I kick myself and swear that I will not allow the Easter Bunny to buy candy again next year. But I know that I will.  It’s what the Easter Bunny does.  


So here are a few pictures from our boys on Easter Morning as they tore through their baskets and small toys.  The kids did get a few puzzles and games this year because E.B. cut back on the Big Giant Bunnies! 

  

 Here I am trying to get the boys together for a cute picture but just like my St. Patrick’s Day photo shoot, you can see that the boys are wild and crazy! So add a couple pounds of sugar on top and they are out of control. Sean couldn’t stand still or stop laughing. 

Awwww, at least I got a cute one of them hugging!

 

  

We spent the morning eating candy, doing multiple egg hunts {we had to recreate the original one several times} and relaxing around the house. 


Instead of Easter dinner we had a late Easter lunch.  It was pretty small this year just the four of us plus my mom and our cousin, Allen {the boys godfather}.   The lunch was delicious and it was topped off by Sean puking at the dining room table! Lovely visual, right?  And what does this kind, gentle, loving mom do? I run the other way and send my husband in to clean up the mess {and the kid}. Hey, in my defense I don’t do well with puke. Trust me if I was alone with the kid I would do it but if I have help, I will let them do the dirty work. Otherwise we might both be sick and no one wants that.  
Thank goodness school starts back up tomorrow! It’s been a fun {but long and tiring week}. I am glad that I was able to travel down to my moms and in laws this past week to break it up a bit. I must admit that I am a little worried about occupying the boys this summer. Even though we have a ton planned, it’s going to be a long one!  

We are off to a play date today! Stay tuned for my next giveaway! Coming after lunch. 

I hope that everyone had a happy and safe Easter Sunday. 


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Mommy, Is that Santa Claus?

So this past weekend our town had their annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Yes, I know St. Patrick’s Day was last weekend but there are so many parades in our area that they are all spread out over three weeks.

This was the first year that I was actually in town and able to go and watch the parade.  The great thing about this parade is that it runs right through my neighborhood. I could watch it from my front step if I wanted too. Plus some of our good friends throw an awesome St. Patrick’s Day after party! Oh and this year they had a little pre-party breakfast where the kids got decked out in their St. Patrick’s Day gear and the adults snacked on some bagels, croissants and of course some beer.

After will filled up on the goodies, we then headed a few blocks over to the parade with the kids.  It was a little chilly freaking cold that day but the kids did great. The men were more of the whiners than the kids. Yes, that is the truth. Oh and who needed to find a bathroom BEFORE the parade even started? Not one of the moms or the kids, it was a dad, my husband to be exact.  But I guess that’s what happens when you tap the keg before the parade!

 The kids were so excited to see the bands, Irish dancers, policemen, firetrucks, horses and of course the candy.  At one point St. Patrick himself marched down the street. My kids, of course with their great Irish background, turned to me and asked “Mommy, is that Santa Claus”. Ughhhhh slapping my hand to my head as I make a mental note to talk to them about their Irish heritage!

Towards the end of the parade (and after my kids had had about 16 lollipops and 74 tootsie rolls they were still hoping to get more candy. Well of course another Girl Scout troop came marching by tossing candy to the crowd. Well, Sean missed grabbing one off of the sidewalk and was a little upset (cause God knows he needed more candy). So I told him to just go up a little and see if he could get one from the girl.  Well I turn my back for one second and when I turn around I see an 8 year old Girl Scout crying her eyes out and my son running back towards me with an entire bag of candy. Yes, my three year old stole candy from a Girl Scout. I mean didn’t anyone tell him if he is going to steal from a Girl Scout that he needed to go straight for the thin mints not the tootsie rolls. I of course ran the bag back to the screaming girl and could not stop myself from laughing. It was quite a funny moment – well not to that little girl.  She was a bit of a cry baby if you ask me! I mean it was the end of the parade and she was tossing candy to the crowd but I’ll let it slide! Ha. 
After the parade we headed back to our friends house for the after party! Which again was an absolute blast. My friends throw awesome parties and the kids were pretty good, if I do say so myself.  I didn’t get them to bed until after 9pm so I thought that the little munchkins would sleep in until at least 7:30 but no such luck…. 6:35am right on cue I hear “Mommy, I have to go potty” and then we were all up for the day!
We are very fortunate to have such a great little parade in our town and especially right in my neighborhood. I know it’s going to grow each year and maybe some day my boys will be in the parade marching in a band or with the boy scouts or maybe even in a firetruck and I will get to steal candy from them!

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Erin Go Bragh!!

Happy St. Patrick’s Day from Erin the Irish Mama!!!!

How Well Do You Know Your Spouse: Valentine’s Day Link Up

So I found this cute blog link up for Valentine’s Day and thought it would be something funny to do with Joey.  He has been working so hard lately, so I was actually pretty curious to hear some of his answers! 

The Valentine’s Day Link up is being hosted by:

Here are the questions that were assigned to us in this task: 


How long have you been married?  
Hubby: 113 months
My Response: 10 years this October (so technically 112 months I believe – too early to do the math)

Where was your first date?  
Hubby: My apartment at 806 Broom Street in Wilmington DE
My Response: His apartment in Wilmington. He cooked me dinner and we watched a movie

Where was your first kiss? 
HubbyAgain at his apartment
My Response: His place

Who first said, “I love you”? 
Hubby: I did
My Response: He did for sure! He was smitten

What were your wedding colors?  
Hubby: Red
My Response: Black, White and Red (hey he got 1 out of 3, not too bad)

    What is her most commonly used phrase? 
    Hubby:  She always says “Your feet stink! You HAVE to do something about that smell!!” 
    My Response: That his feet stink or to settle down.

    Who is her celebrity crush? 
    Hubby:  Channing Tatum
    My Response: Right now probably Channing Tatum or Ryan Phillippe

    If she was ordering drinks for both of you what would you each get?
    Hubby: she would order 2 Dogfish Head 60 Minute IPAs
    My Response: Dogfish IPA 60 or 90 minute

    What is the best meal she has ever cooked you? 
    Hubby:  baked ziti
    My Response: Mexican Mush or Baked Ziti (see that’s all I really cook so I knew it was one of the two)

    What is the worst meal she has ever cooked you?
    Hubby: anything with fish
    Me: Fish. (I don’t eat it so how am I supposed to know how to cook it. I can’t tell when it’s done)

    What is the most-played song on his/her iPod?
    Hubby:  Anything Jessica Simpson
    Me: David Gray or Jessica Simpson

    What would she say is your most annoying habit?
    Hubby:  Burping, Scratching, typical male stuff
    Me: Burping

    What is the last thing she does before she goes to bed?
    Hubby: Charges her phone & turns on Channel 6 news
    Me: Check my iphone

    If you could throw out one item of her clothing what would it be?
    Hubby: That jean jacket you never wear or never will wear
    Me: All of my Delaware t-shirts

    What would you say is your favorite thing about her?
    Hubby: She is easy going and mild mannered
    Me: The fact that I like to drink “real” beer

    What’s her go-to drink at Starbucks?
    Hubby: Nothing, she is not a coffee drinker
    Me: Gross, I can’t stand coffee

    What’s her blog’s name?!
    Hubby:  Erin the Irish Mama
    Me: He better get this one right but it’s Erin the Irish Mama

     He did pretty well. We were close on almost every question!
    This was a lot of fun. I love that I got the hubby involved in this post. Plus since he has been working like crazy, I haven’t had a lot of time to “chat” so this was nice – even if most of it was over email and not a real life conversation.  “Ain’t Nobody Got Time For That”!

    Happy Valentine’s Day Joey.

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    Whew! I am glad that this week is over (Part I)

    Now I am not trying to sound like the Grinch with my blog title. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely LOVE Christmas and we had a wonderful day but it’s been one heck of a week. I haven’t been able to blog at all this week and I know that I need to play a little game of catch up!

    Let me start by saying that I WILL start back up with the Weight Watchers ASAP. I am going to start this coming Monday. I will get back to my daily updates on the Weight Loss Journey page and I will start posting again every Tuesday with my weekly weight loss/gain. I promise!
    The past month has been horrible and I have eaten like I am on death row. I have not hit up the grocery store in a few weeks and I am living out of my pantry (which is stocked but not with the healthy stuff).  Right now I am living off of pasta. Which is not good!

     I have no excuses I just have been stressed and I eat when I am stressed. So don’t be discouraged if you are following me along on my Weight Watchers journey. I will be back and I will be starting back from day one. I am going to ignore everything from the past 3 months and start all over. I have also taken about 2 weeks off from the gym and that will be starting back up again soon! I have NOT given up and I will shed these last 15lbs (yes I know that that number was lower last week, but shit this girl gained some weight over the holidays).

    Moving along to Christmas. 

    Here are some pictures of our trees & stockings.

    The tree in the basement where Santa delivers the presents (right next to the toy room) 

    The upstairs (and our first real) tree.  This is for decoration so it feels like Christmas in the rest of our house and not just in the basement.  Yes I know I have some lights out. I had two strands where half of the lights didn’t work! Oh well next year I’ll get more lights!


    The stockings were hung by the staircase with care

    We had a wonderful two days! On Christmas Eve my husband got home early  from work and we had a very non traditional Christmas Eve dinner – popcorn, cheerios and crackers (oh yeah the adults had some shots of Jamison and some beers).  I told you that I didn’t go shopping this month.

    Before the boys got their baths and were put in their Christmas PJs we took them outside to sprinkle their reindeer food (aka oatmeal and glitter). The boys had a blast spreading it around out back and up the steps to our house.

    After their baths the boys were allowed to open up 3 presents from Mommy and Daddy (a new tradition).  They were so happy and I think the excitement for the next morning grew 1000 times stronger

    After the presents we looked outside and realized that it had started to snow! What a Christmas blessing. I know that it was just a little bit of flurries but for some reason snow on Christmas always puts a smile on my face!

    We then set out the cookies and milk for Santa and put the boys to bed.

     The kids FINALLY fell asleep around 9pm and Santa arrived shortly before 10pm.

    I went to bed around 11pm only to be awoken at 3am by Ben. He wanted to know if he could go downstairs to see if Santa got there yet. I told him no, he was awake and Santa probably had not arrived. I fell back asleep and I have this feeling he went down to check. But all was quiet until around 7am when Sean woke up (which means that the entire house was awake now). It took Mommy and Daddy a few minutes to get ready and get downstairs (seriously let me brush my darn teeth first). The boys waited patiently on the steps until it was time. 

    When we gave them the okay they rushed into the room and all I could hear was squealing and laughter and pure excitement. It took a few minutes for them to figure out which pile belonged to which boy but once they did all hell broke loose.  Ben is like me – we like to rip open every present as fast as we can and then move along to the next one. Sean likes to go a bit slower and open every box as he takes the paper off. My husband and I were so happy to see this excitement. It was the first year that both boys were into it and understood the whole Santa / present thing. Yes, they also knew that it was baby Jesus’ birthday but of course at 3&4 it was all about the goods under the tree. 

    It took a good half hour to get through everything then it was time to start putting toys together, that’s when the fun ended and the craziness began. The screaming, the crying, the tears. Mommy and Daddy couldn’t put the toys together or find the right batteries fast enough. Next year I might have Santa prep all the gifts with the batteries. Hear that you fat jolly old man – open up the presents, put in the batteries and then wrap them. Okay, you got it? I know that you are somewhere in Tahiti right now sipping on some fruity drink but listen up big guy.

    I tried to get the boys to nap (yeah right) before Mom Mom McGarry came up for round 2 of Christmas presents. I think they each had a 45 minute snoozer. Not too bad.  So we started again with gifts (and fighting and yelling). Typical with two boys just a little bit heightened on Christmas Day. But it was a wonderful day capped off with a great tortellini casserole dinner. I posted the recipe a few weeks ago. You can find it here.  Thanks again Maria! 

    But the real test for the week was Wednesday morning. Ben’s MRI day. I will save that one for another post! Stay tuned.  Sorry it took way too long to get this blog post done. Hopefully I can write about the MRI tonight after the kids go to bed. 
    I hope that you all had a wonderful and safe Christmas! I am sorry if I wasn’t able to reach out and answer all of your emails and texts this past week. I have just been extremely overwhelmed and I promise to be in touch soon! I thank you all for being so wonderful and kind to us – the prayers for Ben have definitely helped! 
    PS – I am up to number 40 on the mommy blogs and at number 4 in the Stay at Home category! Keep on clicking. Every day pushes me higher up the list. The higher I get the more peeps who read the blog! Thanks again. 
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    My Dream Christmas Wish List

    Just one final blog post before Christmas! Just a little something light hearted and fun.
    What I would ask for for Christmas if I was rich:
    1. A healthy family
    2. A brand new Jeep Wrangler Unlimited (or maybe a new Range Rover)
    3. A brand new house with 4-5 bedrooms and a very large kitchen
    4. A housekeeper
    5. A personal trainer
    6. A babysitter
    7. My own boutique
    8. An ocean front beach house in Avalon, NJ
    What I am really asking for this Christmas:
    1. A healthy family
    2. A calm year at work for my husband
    3. A million dollars
    4. A blog that provides me with some extra funds from advertising
    5. An ipad – ooops I just got that as an early Christmas gift!
    Merry Christmas to you all! Wishing you and your family a very happy and safe holiday. I hope that you are able to spend the day with the ones you love. Remember like I said in my post last week….
    “It came without ribbons! It came without tags!
    “It came without packages, boxes or bags!”
    And then he puzzled three hours, till his puzzler was sore.
    Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before!
    “Maybe Christmas,” he thought, “doesn’t come from a store.
    “Maybe Christmas…perhaps…means a little bit more!”
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