Posts

Disney-Themed Stocking Stuffers That Don’t Break the Bank

Disney-Themed Stocking Stuffers That Don't Break the Bank

You’ve carefully budgeted your Christmas shopping and then you remember…you didn’t buy anything for the STOCKINGS! Or is that just me? Depending on how well you “stuff the stocking”, this could be a very expensive endeavor! Here are some last-minute practical and inexpensive stocking stuffers that won’t compromise your budget.

I’m a practical gal, I’ll admit it. I tend to gravitate towards stocking stuffer items that my kids already need. A new toothbrush, crayons, winter gloves, bubble bath and yes, even a package of undies make it in to the stocking.

Keep reading for my practical but still fun stocking stuffer ideas and a list of tips at the bottom of this post.

Please note that this post contains affiliate links


 Cozy Up

‘Tis the season to keep warm and these gifts will keep them toasty and stylish. A warm scarf, hat, gloves, slippers or socks are always welcome, especially if they feature a favorite character. Socks in a stocking? Kids will get a kick out of that!

from left to right,  BB-8 Knit hat (Disney Store), Doc McStuffins Kids Lambie Slippers, Star Wars Socks (both from Amazon)

 


 Art Supplies

Always a family favorite in our house. A fresh box of crayons or markers and a coloring book rolled up into the stocking is always a hit. Older kids might like a personalized pen.

from left to right, Disney’s Frozen Magic Ink Pictures Activity Book (Amazon), Walt Disney World personalized pen (from Disney Store), Disney Pixar Cars 12 Jumbo Crayons (Amazon)


Bathroom Fun

My little one  is obsessed with the Disney Magic Timer app that encourages longer brushing. He already has Star Wars mouthwash, Cars toothpaste and an Avengers toothbrush. I was able to find this Frozen-themed set for his stocking that I know he will love. And what’s better to balance out holiday sweets than oral hygiene products! *wink*

from left to right, Star Wars Oral Hygiene Set, Disney Frozen Oral-B Crest and Pro-Health Junior Toothpaste, Doc McStuffins 3pc Bright Smile Oral Hygiene Set (all from Amazon)

Get ’em clean with fun bath time goodies like bubble bath, soap and scrubbers. My older kids like something a little more “grown up” in a more sophisticated scent like the Disney H2O products.

from left to right, Disney Princess Bubble Bath (Amazon), Sea Salt & Marine Spa Collection (DisneyStore) and Bubble Bath Set Disney Pixar Cars (Amazon)

        


Stock Up for the Year

Make practical things a gift. Kids just want to see their favorite character and they are things that you would normally buy through the year anyway!

from left to right, Band-Aid Disney-Pixar Inside Out, Disney-Pixar Nemo SPF50 Sunscreen Stick, Bonnie Bell Disney Mickey Mouse Lip Balm


Vacation Goodies

Think ahead to what your kids will need things for vacations, like sunglasses, a sun hat or a t-shirt. Roll ’em up and stuff it in the stocking!

from left to right,  Elsa Costume Tee (Disney Store), R2-D2 Sunglasses and Minnie Mouse Toddler Girls Pink Bucket Hat
(both from Amazon)


A Little Something Just for Fun

Don’t forget at least one fun little thing that your kids will enjoy through the year. Little ones might enjoy a little stuffy and older girls would love a classy make-up set in a Disney-theme. And don’t forget the Force in the form of a cool new Lightsaber!

from left to right, Minnie Mouse Hair Ties, Marvel Universal “Tsum Tsum” (both from Disney Store)

from left to right, ELF Jasmine Face Makeup Set, Maxx Action Galactic Series Photon Sabers (both from Amazon)


 Something Sweet

I bought these mini candy canes for my kids last Christmas and they were just the perfect size to toss a few of each flavor into each stocking. And how cute is that Olaf Hot Cocoa set?! My kids don’t have candy or sweets very often so receiving a special treat in their stockings is always welcome (we even let them indulge right after breakfast!) It is Christmas, after all!

from left to right, Disney’s Mini Candy Canes, Jelly Belly Jelly Beans, Mickey Mouse Special Edition, Wilton Disney Frozen Olaf Cocoa Trimming Kit and Arctic White Hot Cocoa Bundle

      


Stocking Stuffer Tips –

1. What’s your stocking budget? Those little things really add up so make sure you have a cost in mind before buying and don’t go overboard on the cost.

2. Keep size in mind. Take the size of your stockings into consideration. If a gift is too big for the stocking, wrap it up and set it next to the stocking or on the mantle.

3. How many items should you get? Keep the number of stocking stuffers between 3-5 (depending upon the size).

4. Don’t buy junk or just “things” to fill the stocking. Stick to what you know will be used and well-loved.  I want things that will actually be enjoyed so it’s worth spending a little more rather than just filling stockings with bottom-of-the-toy-box items from the dollar store.


 What are your favorite stocking stuffers? Share in the comments…and have a Merry Christmas!

Please note that this post contains affiliate links

signature41

Holiday Gift Guide – Disney-inspired Gifts for Kids Under 5

Holiday Gift Guide - Disney-inspired Gifts for Kids Under 5

Welcome to this month’s Blogorail Black Loop. Today we are sharing our holiday gift guides.


There are thousands of Disney-inspired gifts for kids under five years old. So how do you know what will make the best gift for your little ones? When buying gifts, there are several things to consider: age appropriateness, probable longevity of the item and quality. And an important thing to me, practicality. Sure, those 3 foot tall dolls are cute, but how often will it be played with? Yes, that awesome, hot new toy is cool but if it’s over $100 how many times will it be used with to make it worth the value?

I love to think outside the box for my kids and buy them things that they’ll be able to use and enjoy over several years and that won’t end up at the bottom of the toy bin next week. Having something that is timeless and high quality is important too, especially if you have more than one child and the item could be handed down to the next child in time.

Here are my choices for the best Disney-inspired gifts for kids under 5, starting with babies. I’ll be having a little girl next year and already thinking of the sweet Disney-themed items I’ll be able to buy for her! Please note that some of the links in this article are affiliate links.


Disney Gifts for Babies

What does baby love? Something useful like a teether or a blankie? Something fun like wooden blocks! Something soothing like a soundtrack of lullabies. And when all else fails, you can’t go wrong with an adorable outfit that dresses baby like a princess or Winnie the Pooh!

NUK Disney Mickey Mouse Teether (Amazon), Dumbo Piggy Bank (DisneyStore), Wooden Castle Blocks for Baby by Melissa & Doug (DisneyStore)

 Minnie Mouse Plush Blankie (DisneyStore), Disney Baby Lullaby (Amazon)

 

Winnie the Pooh Hooded Romper (DisneyStore), Disney Minnie Mouse Dress Black Shoes (Amazon), Disney Baby Cinderella Dress Set (Amazon), Mickey bibs (DisneyStore)

 


Reading

Books are one of my favorite gifts to give because they are truly enjoyed all year round by my little ones. We own the Cars First Look & Find and it’s a great conversation starter. Reading is also the perfect way to snuggle up with them at bedtime.

Disney Junior Official Magazine (Amazon), Frozen Five Minute Stories (DisneyStore)

  

Disney-Pixar Inside Box of Mixed Emotions (DisneyStore), Cars First Look & Find (DisneyStore), Winnie the Pooh’s Giant Lift-the-Flap Book (DisneyStore)


Pajamas

I’m all for giving new pajamas at Christmas. Often times it’s a gift I let my kids open on Christmas Eve so they have a crisp, new pair to wear in their Christmas morning photos!

Mickey Mouse PJ Pals and Doc McStuffins Pajama Set (both from The Disney Store)

Toy Story – Woody and Buzz Pajama Set (Amazon), Elsa Nightgown (DisneyStore), Cars Lightning McQueen Pajamas (Amazon)

  


Meal Time

We own Zak Designs melamine plates and bowls and they hold up so well over the years, even with dishwasher use. And truly, can you ever have enough cups for little ones?

Zak Designs 5-Piece Princess Mealtime Serveware Set & Disney Mickey Mouse Clubhouse 3 Piece Mealtime Dinnerware Set (both from Amazon)

 

Minnie Mouse Cup and Olaf Tumbler (both from DisneyStore), Disney Junior Miles From Tomorrowland Folding Flatware Set (Amazon)


Travel for Kids

Going on a trip to a Magical location? Or just to Grandma’s house for the night? Little kids love to tote their own necessities in Disney style.

Miles from Tomorrowland Light-Up Rolling Luggage and Anna & Elsa Rolling Luggage (both from DisneyStore)

Disney Princesses Plush Travel Pillow and Disney Mickey Backpack (both from Amazon)

Disney Sofia the First Toddler Sleepover Slumber Set with Tote Bag and Inside Out Slumber Bag in Drawstring Bag (both from Amazon)


Bedroom Decor

Disney Jake and The Pirates Bed Tent (Amazon), Sully Plush Pillow, 2-pack Disney Cinderella Pillowcases Night Sparkles Bed Accessories (Amazon)

 

Ariel personalized blanket (DisneyStore),  Up House artwork (Vivid Editions)

<

For more holiday gift options,
check out the other great posts from the Blogorail!


Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail Black | Holiday Gift Guides Loop:

What are your favorite items to gift to kids under five years old? Share below in the comments!

signature4

 

Budget-Friendly Mother’s Day Gifts that She’ll Love

Skip the flowers and chocolates this year and pick up Mom a Mother’s Day gift that she’ll absolutely swoon over. You know when you’ve found just the right thing when she tells everyone she sees about it! No need to spend a ton, these are 11 fantastic treats that cost less than $60 each (so you can buy one for yourself too!)


Pampering, in the comfort of her own home

Amope Foot File

Amope Foot File (Amazon affiliate link)

Amopé Pedi Perfect Electronic Pedicure Foot File

Shhh…this is what I bought for my mom and my mother-in-law. In fact, I also bought one for my husband in anticipation of Father’s Day! A good friend has this and says it’s the best, that it completely eliminates any rough spots on her feet. I’m thinking I should have bought one for myself too!

Toss in some lovely Jamberry wraps and she can give herself a pampering from the tips of her nails to the bottoms of her feet!


A Weekend Retreat

Ricardo Beverly Hills

This is one bag that stands out from the rest and you can be sure Mom won’t lose sight of it in this catchy design. I received a Roxbury 2.0 Carry-on Hardside for my recent Walt Disney World trip and can attest to the high quality of Ricardo Beverly Hills.

As a special Mother’s Day offer, Traveling Mom has partnered with Ricardo to give readers a Traveling Mom exclusive deal: 65% off the retail price of any Ricardo suitcase. Visit the Ricardo website to start shopping. Add the coupon code TMOM65Off at checkout. If your order totals more than $99, you’ll also receive free shipping. (The offer is good only until May 31, 2015)


The Perfect Fit

Pandora Cinderella bracelet (it’s not gold, it’s really silver but the Instagram app seems to have changed the color!)

I just recently received my first Pandora bracelet and charm. It’s so stunningly beautiful, I think I’m addicted. I’ve been stalking the Disney Store link looking for my next addition.

Cinderella Tiara Charm

Cinderella Tiara Pandora Charm (Affiliate link)


Relaxation and Wellness

Lavender is lovely. Peppermint, refreshing. Serenity calms. Using doTerra essential oils is one of my favorite ways to wind-down at night. A drop or two on my feet and massaged in before bed and I am oh-so relaxed. Moms can use all the relaxing they can get!


A Book of Memories

morocco

Lunch in Morocco with Mom

I just returned from an epic trip to Walt Disney World with my mom. It was a whirlwind and I didn’t take nearly enough pictures, but we did capture some wonderful moments together. Consider combining your special mom moments together into a Shutterfly book. I have a dozen of these books and love going back through them to relive the memories.


If you’re a mom, what do you most want to receive for Mother’s Day? Breakfast in bed? Peace and Quiet? Share in the comments!

This post includes affiliate links

signature6

 

Practical Gifts on a Budget (that are still FUN!)

Practical Gifts on a budget (that are still fun!)

No surprise to me, when I brought up Christmas this year, my husband said, “Let’s get the kids practical gifts”. We’re both practical people and for him especially, the clutter of tiny trinkets in our teeny-tiny house is well, terrible! We plan on minimizing the toy buying and keep with purchases that will go to good use.

“Oh, underwear for a gift! How wonderful!!”, said no kid, ever!

But practical gifts can still be fun to receive on Christmas morning, I’m here to prove it!


Practically Perfect Christmas Gifts! For added fun, I’ve included images and links from the Disney Store (affiliate). Click the picture to learn more about each item.

PILLOW – My kids all have the most sad looking bedroom pillows and each of them need a replacement. I’m going to buy them a new pillow and make a colorful pillowcase in a favorite fabric theme to put on it. No wrapping needed, just lay it under the tree! I will post a tutorial on how to make your own pillowcase soon.

SHOES OR SLIPPERS- I think it would be funny to hide the shoes somewhere in the house, as if the shoes “walked” away from the Christmas tree! Have the open shoe boxes under the tree and a treasure map with clues inside to find your missing new shoes…doesn’t that sound like something kids would get a kick out of?

WINTER ACCESSORIES – Replace last years missing scarf, hat and gloves. Place one of your child’s stuffed animals under the tree and “dress” it with the new accessories.

BLANKET – What kid doesn’t love a cozy warm blanket? Have you ever made one of the snuggly knotted fleece blankets? They are super-easy and there are so many sweet designs to choose from! I will post a tutorial on how to make your own knotted fleece blanket soon.

BOOKS – All year-long I keep a list of books that my kids would enjoy receiving and gift them with about five fun titles. This year I’m going to give my daughter a book about Finding Hidden Mickeys along with some short chapter books. My son mentioned wanting a field guide about minerals so I’ll give him that and a few other interesting field guides that I know he’ll enjoy. Stack the books into a tower and tie it up with a bow!

LUNCH BOX – Give their lunch a refresh with a bright and shiny new lunch box and thermos.

PAJAMAS – I don’t know about your kids but mine like to put their pajamas on right after school! If you know how to sew, making your own pj pants is quick and easy. Find a fun fabric theme and sew up a bunch! Make one pair in a holiday fabric and give it to your child on Christmas Eve. Roll them up tightly and slide several pairs into an empty wrapping paper roll for a whimsical decoration!

PIGGY BANK – Start them with a jingle-jangle of coins and a few bills inside and this practical gift becomes fantastic!

ART SUPPLIES – Maybe some households don’t consider this a necessity, but as a creative person I know that new drawing paper, pencils and crayons are a MUST! Put everything in an art box (plastic storage bin) along with some stickers for them to decorate the box with.

BATHING SUIT & BEACH TOWEL – Bring the summer fun to the winter chill! Present these summer essentials in a beach bucket with a tube of sunscreen and new sunglasses and you’ll be ready for the pool when the warmth returns.

SOCKS & UNDERWEAR – Yes, I know…no kid want that for a gift, but every kid needs them! Give kids a giggle and stuff one pair inside each present you give them this year.


Practically FUN Stocking Stuffers –

TOOTHBRUSH – My kids get a snazzy new electric version with a favorite character on it.

T-SHIRT -Roll it up and stuff it into the toe of the stocking.

BAND-AIDS – Get a box with fun designs for each child. Great to have in the first aid box when you need them.

BUBBLE BATH – Most of the time my kids take a shower but when they are feeling under the weather there is nothing like a warm soak in the tub. That’s when bubbles are a special treat!

WATER BOTTLE – Encourage hydration with a fun new bottle (choose different designs/colors for each kid so they don’t get mixed up).

COMPACT UMBRELLA – Slide one into their stockings and this spring they’ll be covered (literally!) when rain comes!


Do you have ideas for practical and budget-friendly (but fun!) things for a child’s gift? Share them in the comments!

signature3

 

 

 

Why DIY?

I’m a do-it-yourself-er at heart. For as far back as I can recall, if you could buy it in the store, I’ve been trying to make it better at home. I never bought a birthday card when I was a kid, they were all made by me (complete with a hand drawn “Hallmark-style” crown on the back!). I started hand sewing when I was young and making whatever I could with whatever fabric I could get my hands on. Sketches and watercolors made nice gifts for friends and family.

There was always a project (or two…or ten)…and there still is!

Handmade baby quilt and nursing pillow cover.

Handmade baby quilt and nursing pillow cover.

My craft space is currently a flurry of multiple juggling projects, from a quilt that I plan to make as a Christmas gift, watercolor art that I hope to someday get printed, a personalized t-shirt, some half-painted picture frames and a stack of hot-off-the-sewing machine pillowcases for the sofa.

013

Why buy, when you can make it better at home?

Handpainted wooden figures for a Small World birthday party.

Handpainted wooden figures for a Small World birthday party.

I understand that perhaps crafting isn’t your talent. Maybe you’ve never held a needle in your life. Or you don’t consider yourself an “artist”. I truly believe there is a craft for everyone. Maybe if drawing isn’t your thing, woodworking is. Or maybe you can decorate beautiful cakes using a piping bag. How about gardening, you just have that magical green thumb? Are perhaps computer technology is your craft and you know how to code functional websites.

Appliqued shirts for a Disney trip.

Appliqued shirts for a Disney trip.

In any case, doing-it-yourself can be a rewarding way to share your talent with others. It’s a stress-reliever and often times (if you don’t get caught up overstocking supplies), DIY can be a great way to save money. I have found that my best projects come from what I have on hand because I’m forced to get creative with my supplies instead of simply going to the store and buying it.

DIY… I hope you’ll try!

DIY girl's princess blouse.

DIY girl’s princess blouse.

signature