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Archive for the ‘gifts’ tag

July 15th, 2014 at 11:58 am

Totally Geeky Baby Gifts

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Looking for a fun and unique baby gift with the geeky parents in mind?

You’ll find some really cute and unusual items at thinkgeek.com. How about a Superhero bib and bootie set, Star Trek onesie  a quirky pacifier  (cork, mute button or vampire lips), or my favorite, The Periodic Table building blocks?

Visit geekabyebaby.com for some unique bedding, bibs, clothes and more that will amuse all you gamers, rockers, and Doctor Who fans. Lots of options for customizing your bedding, baby hats and burp cloths. Who wouldn’t love a Yoda or Minecraft Creeper hat for their little one, or a Star Wars diaper bag?

Want some good baby book ideas? How about Star Wars ABC, The Very Hungry Zombie or GoodNight iPad?

Another fun site is babygeek.com for an Indiana Jones bib or the I Just Boldly Went onesie (pictured), which is absolutely hysterical. Or a baby-safe smartphone teether. And for those die hard Batman fans, you gotta see this over-the-top car seat!

Lastly, how about this for ingenious and practical? A portable high chair. It’s like a camp chair for your baby and it takes geek factor to another level – it’s brilliant.

Your geeky baby gifts are sure to be a hit at the next baby shower you attend!

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June 5th, 2014 at 6:32 pm

Unique Father’s Day Gifts From Etsy

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Father’s day is right around the corner, and my sisters and I were just discussing what we’re going to get our father this year. It seems that, over the years, it has gotten harder and harder to find gifts for our closest family members. Last month, Kim did a blog post about great mother’s day gifts from Etsy, so I decided to check it out. The great thing about this website is that there really is something for everyone…and you find tons of handmade and unique items you won’t find anywhere else. Here are my top 10 Father’s Day gift ideas from Etsy.

Dad and Baby Dinosaur Matching Tees from Zoey’s Attic

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Personalized Toiletry/Travel Bag from Designs By Daffy

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Custom Photo Keychain from Too Too Posh

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Personalized Leather Wallet and Money Clip Combo from My Personal Memories

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Charging Stand and Valet from Improve Results

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Personalized Grilling Apron Set from Monogram Envy Boutique

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Personalized “Daddy” Picture Frame from Custom Wood Engravings

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Father’s Day Hot Sauce Gift Set from In Nonna’s Kitchen

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Personalized Postcard Pillow from Olive Handmade

(Great for military dads!)

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Guinness Truffles and Dark Chocolate Covered Bacon from Champagne Chocolate

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May 8th, 2014 at 11:10 am

Mother’s Day Experiences

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Mother's DayExperiences

As we get older, it becomes increasingly harder to choose gifts for our parents (or for our own children and significant others to choose gifts for us!). Earlier this week we talked about some unique, handmade gifts for Mother’s Day from Etsy, but sometimes it’s nice to offer a fun or new experience instead of an item. Here are some ideas for experiences you can give your mom (or your children can give you) this Mother’s Day.

  • Homemade Lunch at the Park – Check out some gourmet-style recipes for things like pasta salad and sandwiches, pack a yummy picnic, a blanket and some portable games and treat your mother to lunch in a nice outdoor setting. She’ll appreciate the time you spent preparing, as well as the time she can spend with you!
  • Day at the Spa – Everyone likes a day of relaxation. You can take her for a day at the spa or nail salon, or save money by doing the treatments yourself! It doesn’t have to be professional to be enjoyed…offer a nice manicure/pedicure with massage, or if you’re feeling ambitious, research how to give a good DIY facial or body treatment.
  • Daycation – No matter where you live, there are usually a few nice places to spend a full day that are within a few hours of travel. Plan out a day of fun, whether it be shopping and a special restaurant, a tourist attraction you know she’d love to see, etc. Consider botanical gardens, beaches, zoos, aquariums, museums, etc., and work around that to create a full day of quality time with her.
  • Tasting Menu – You likely know what type of foods and beverages your mother likes best. Treat her to a unique tasting by offering 3 or 4 mini-portioned variations of her favorite things. Include a drink menu, appetizer menu, main course menu and dessert menu. It sounds like a lot of work but it will excite her to try different things. You can always pay for tastings at wineries, breweries and restaurants if you don’t want to make them yourself.
  • Weekend Getaway – Thanks to deal sites like Groupon and LivingSocial, weekend getaways are more affordable than ever and often come as packages with activities, meals, or credits. There’s something for everyone and it’s nice to treat yourself too!

What experience would YOU love to get for Mother’s Day?

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May 5th, 2014 at 7:51 am

Mother’s Day Shopping on Etsy

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I love when my family gives me unique gifts for Mother’s Day. Whether it be a handmade item that my boys made or a handpicked item someone else made, it always holds a special place in my heart. I love Etsy because you can buy things that are unique, and it has that craft fair or boutique shopping feel, as well as TONS of items to choose from!

I also love to pick some favorite things that my husband can help the boys purchase for Mother’s Day, my birthday, Christmas or just because! I keep an Etsy “wish list” that has lots of great gift ideas from artisans all over the world.

Handmade, Hand-Stamped Necklace with Children’s Names

Family Tree Necklace with Birthstones

Infinity Ring

Hand-Stamped Birthstone Necklace

Mom Wood Sign

Mom’s Garden Flagstone

Soccer Mom T-shirt

Here are some great gifts for your own mom:

Custom Map Print

Wood Block Sign

Magnetic Picture Board

Looking for something else? Be sure to check out the Etsy Mother’s Day collection. Share some of your favorite Etsy items in the comments and on our Facebook wall!

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May 2nd, 2014 at 9:14 am

Teacher Appreciation Gift Ideas

Teacher Appreciation Ideas

Next week (May 5-9, 2014) is Teacher Appreciation Week. This is such a great way to let anyone who “teaches” our children know how much we appreciate their hard work.

One of my favorite things to do is to make a bucket filled with all of a teacher’s favorite things! As you can see in the picture, we fill it with snacks and even a little gift card for them to spend on lunch or an ice cream snack! This is helpful because I have the teacher fill out a wish list at the start of the year telling us some of their favorite things!

Soap Dispenser Gift

Teacher Plant Gift 

Sweet Teacher Gift

Journal Blessing Gift

Chips and Soda Gift

Target Gift Card Holder

Homemade Sweet Treat

Super Hero Appreciation

Homemade Soap Dispenser

Tape or Glue Gift

Teacher Qualities Frame

For more great ideas, you can also check out our Gifts for Teacher board on Pinterest!

I’ve done several of these ideas, but the best thing about them is that you can adapt them to celebrate the teacher’s birthday, teacher appreciation week, or even an end-of-year gift. Take some time to show your appreciation to the teachers in your kid’s life!

 

 

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December 10th, 2013 at 5:00 am

Christmas Gifts With A Latino Twist

5220663566_ffce30a320Christmas is right around the corner and if you want to give out some unique gifts this holiday season, I have some ideas with a Latino twist. Some of these would be great for bilingual kids, but even if you don’t have children like that on your list, these gifts are so different that they’re sure to be a hit no matter what!

Latin music — The CD Coloreando: Traditional Songs for Children in Spanish was released recently by Global Language Project, an amazing organization that provides language training in Spanish, Mandarin and Arabic to disadvantaged elementary school students. Performed by Colombian singer Marta Gomez, these traditional children’s songs in Spanish are catchy and will have kids signing in no time even if they’re only able to repeat a few words.

Latino fashion — From onesies to adult T-shirts, Dos Borreguitas is an online store with lots of unique, Latino-themed clothing items for the entire family. One of my favorite ones is a tee that says I Speak Spanglish because I do and I’m proud of it!

Latin roots — I like these customizable maps created by Children Inspire Design so much that I feel like getting all of them. Truth is that this is a great gift for all kids because you can customized the map to reflect their roots regardless of where their family is from.

Latino literature — There are a lot of options to choose from, but I highly recommend anything written by Alma Flor Ada or by Pat Mora. Both of these are well-known, prolific Latina authors whose children’s books would make absolutely wonderful gifts.

Photo credit: metaphoricalplatypus.com

Roxana A. Soto is the co-founder of SpanglishBaby, the go-to site for parents raising bilingual and bicultural children. She’s the co-author of her first book, based on her blog. Roxana is also a staff writer for MamásLatinas.

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December 3rd, 2013 at 5:00 am

Cool Tech Gift Ideas for the Holidays

perfect giftHere we are again. Shopping for the holidays. Trying to find just the right gift for everyone on your list is enough to cause an outbreak of hives. I’m always looking for creative and useful ideas so I’m an easy target for all the “best of” lists. So from a tech mom perspective, I’ll pass on a few of the best ones I’ve found. The good news is you don’t have to spend a fortune to give tech!

Have a look at ThinkGeek.com. This unique site is a mecca for fun and quirky items that celebrate the uniqueness of their love of say, zombies and bacon.

Want to give an experience rather than a thing? Check out cloud9living.com and see what kind of unique opportunities exist in your region. Some of them are rather pricey but there are options for everything from flying to fly fishing for all budgets.

Looking for a way to get more from your TV? Stream videos and internet content with Google’s Chromecast. At $35 and the size of a USB drive, simply plug it in to your HDTV (wifi required) and watch movies, TV shows, videos or listen to music on the big screen, all controlled by your smartphone or computer.

For the music lover, portable Bluetooth speakers that let you hear your digital tunes wirelessly are a terrific idea. At the higher end are Jawbone, Sonos, and Bose options but there are many other lower cost options too.

Flash drives are a great stocking stuffer. And there are tons of novelty models out there from sushi, cartoon characters and my favorite, a rubber thumb.

WiFi SD cards are another great gift. Use these cards in your camera to enable automatic uploading to your PC or the web. Nice!

How about turning your iPad into an air hockey game? What? Yes, for under $15, iPieces is an app that does just that. Check it out at Pressman Toys.

And for that personalized gift, how about a custom iPhone case from Casetagram? Turn a favorite photo into a canvas work of art or a dozen adorable photos into a monthly calendar for the grandparents. Sites like Shutterfly, Snapfish and CafePress offer many options for turning photos into creative gifts.  Sure beats a tie or yet another scarf.

May your holidays be merry and bright. And your gift giving a joy!

You can also find Paula on LinkedInFacebook and Twitter @techsmart319. Feel free to reach out if you have questions.

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December 2nd, 2013 at 5:00 am

Handmade Gifts Children Can Make

handmade-ornamentsMy favorite gift to receive from my children is always a handmade one. It is so fun to see all the care they put into it to make it special just for me! Here are some ideas for easy gifts that are perfect for your kids to make for teachers, family and friends.

Ornaments – The possibilities are endless. Use paper and photos, pipe cleaners or practically anything found in your craft box. Be adventurous and make salt dough ornaments you can paint.

Soap Dispenser - Use art work as the design for the transparency. Shrink it down and color copy it for an amazing design.

Candle  - I love this idea using children’s artwork on tissue paper. Great idea to spruce up a regular chunky candle.

Handprint Art – Pinterest has an amazing collection of everything and anything you can make with your hand. Make something and frame or upload to a calendar design. It’s great to collect kids handprints so you can remember when they were so little. I made adorable reindeer out of feet here.

Custom Canvas – Buy some white canvas and paint and have your child young and old create a custom wall hanging.

Food – Work with your child to create some cookies, bread, jarred mix, or even christmas candies or fudge to share. Snap a picture while they are helping and use it as part of the gift tag.

Now, I need to get start working on some gifts for my family. Be creative and have fun! It isn’t just about the gift but the quality time that you spend with your child while creating these!

Kim Ross also writes at  A Little Bit of This and That ~ The Adventures of a Stay at Home Mom.

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June 12th, 2013 at 10:08 pm

DIY Father’s Day Gifts

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Father’s Day is right around the corner, and what better way to help your kids show their dad appreciation and love than by putting together a fabulous hand-made gift? Get creative with printables, gift baskets, and personalized elements. Here are some ideas based on the “types” of dads we know and love.

BBQ King Dad

Homemade rubs and sauces are made with love, and you can make a variety for different flavors. He’ll enjoy trying each one and experimenting with different meat combinations. This DIY BBQ Pack even comes with great printables for that added touch.

 Movie Buff Dad

There’s nothing like a movie gift basket…popcorn, soda, candy and a few DVDs make a great gift for the dad who loves movie night! If the dad you’re gifting is into video games, check out the Couch Potato Gift Basket!

Sentimental Dad

Use pictures of the kids and their own artistic talents to create sentimental gifts Dad can enjoy for years to come, like a Father’s Day Book, Father’s Day Photo Collage or these Scrabble Photo Frames.

Professional Dad

This Shrinky Dink Tie Tack is seriously the cutest thing we’ve ever seen. Use a cute message or a photo of your little ones! A handmade Belt Rack is a space saver and will keep all his belts organized.

 Foodie Dad

Really any food can be dressed up in a nice container with a printable. Choose foods that don’t expire fast, like nuts, candy, popcorn, etc. There are tons of options! This Candy Bar Poster is cute , and a Sugar and Spice Nut Mix or Flavored Popcorn will do the trick.

Cool Car Dad

For the Dad who’s obsessed with his car, Daddy’s Car Wash Kit  will have him entertained for hours! This Car Travel Kit is perfect for any dad who commutes in the car or likes to go on road trips!

You can find more Father’s Day gift ideas on our Pinterest board!

 

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May 8th, 2013 at 10:10 am

Mother’s Day Gift Ideas

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Mother’s Day is just around the corner…a day completely dedicated to celebrating amazing moms (like you)! It’s a day to feel appreciated for the hard work you put in day in and day out. Let’s not forget that moms have moms too! Whether you’re looking for a nice DIY gift for your mother, or you’re helping your kids make something to show you how much they love you, here are some great gift ideas.

I’m a big fan of gift baskets because they can fit any budget and can be personalized. Here are some gift basket ideas for different types of moms:

Green Thumb Basket

Seed packets or bulb bags, a small bag of potting soil, plant food, a garden trowel, gardening gloves, etc. placed in either a large watering can or a basket that can double as a gardening tool holder or planter.

Spa Mama Basket

Scented candles, bath balls or salts, shower gel, lotion, eye mask, spa pillow, scrub brush or loofa, soft socks, and a CD of soothing songs in a nice wicker basket that can be used for holding bath items.

Movie Critic Basket

DVDs or Blu-rays, different types of candy, and a gift certificate for 2 tickets to the local movie theater packed into a microwavable bucket of popcorn.

Sweet Tooth Basket

A variety of candy, cookies, and other sweets. You can buy them yourself or you can make delicious items such as chocolate covered pretzels, yogurt-dipped raisins, chocolate chip cookies, etc.

Yoga Basket

A yoga mat, yoga DVDs, and a water bottle. You can add extras such as a hand towel, a gift certificate for local yoga classes or yoga attire, etc.

Culinary Creations Basket

Cookbook, set of wooden cooking utensils, measuring cups, measuring spoons, a bag of special pasta, and a jar of pasta sauce. You can personalize this to a baker by changing out the pasta and sauce for a bag of chocolate chips and a cookie mix, and including baking spatulas instead of the wooden utensils.

What are you giving YOUR mom this year?

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