Gifts for Teen Girls

Our sweet daughter was born in January.  Coincidentally, most of my family was (except me).  What to gift her for her birthday, 2 weeks after Christmas?  This is my dilemma every year, and as she gets older, the choices become more difficult. This past January was extremely hard, as all she desires anymore are gift cards to her favorite stores.  While there is nothing wrong with gift cards, I prefer to buy her gifts, as I feel it’s more of the thought that usually counts. So here is a list I put together for anyone out there experiencing this issue with their teen daughter, niece, goddaughter or friend:

Barrington personalized bags & accessories Barrington Gifts offers high quality leather bags, totes, duffle bags, wallets, cabin bags, writing instruments, crossbody bags, passport and laptop cases. Customizable in many colors and prints.

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A subscription to Disney+  Our daughter just recently asked us if she could subscribe to this service, so I think any teenager would enjoy it.

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A relaxing spa set Any young lady would enjoy a relaxing spa set, which may include scented candles, bath bombs and face masks.

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A pink Echo Dot Who doesn’t love Alexa??

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Alex and Ani Flying Butterfly Duo Charm Bangle Set Alex and Ani have so many options of adorable bracelets, rings and necklaces.  Tons of options to choose from, wherever your young lady’s interests may lie.

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Adidas Originals Women’s Gazelle Sneaker Adidas sneakers are so popular nowadays, and there is a large variety to choose from.

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Urban Decay Naked Cherry Eyeshadow Palette  This is a very nice palette for any make-up loving teen.

Sephora

Pink Colorblock Felt Letter Board These boards have become very popular for room decor and even at parties and gatherings.  They come in a variety of colors as well.

felt board

HP Sprocket Portable Photo Printer Since no one uses cameras anymore, especially the younger generations, these little photo printers allow them to print photos directly from their cell phones.

photo printer

Sunrise Alarm Clark We know teens have a very hard time waking up in the mornings.  Sunrise clocks are designed to mimic the sun rising by slowly filling your room with light. When the alarm finally rings, your room is bright, which makes waking up less abrupt. It also includes an FM radio and USB charging port. (This may be a huge hit for college freshman).

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And of course you can never go wrong with Apple AirPods.

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Shopping for teens can be very difficult at times, I hope this list gives you some ideas.  I would love to hear what you have gifted teens?

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Valentine’s Gifts for All

Valentine’s Day is one of those holidays that tends to sneak up on me. Don’t get me wrong, it’s advertised everywhere since December 26th, impossible not to realize it’s coming up.  But for me it’s right after Christmas AND hubby’s birthday.  So, gift ideas are running scarce for me by the time February comes around.  Every year I like to come up with a Valentine gift guide to help those that are in my same situation.  Here are a few options for all the loved ones in your life:

Vday Gifts

  1. Kate Spade Pop Hearts Oblong Scarf, available at Kate Spade stores or katespade.com, $98. Great gift for any young lady.
  2. I Love You Like Lavender Gift Set, available naplessoap.com, $125. I love the scent of lavender and this is a great gift set which contains a Lavender Vanilla 9 oz. Body Butter, Lavender Vanilla 9 oz. Sea Salt Scrub, Lavender Buds Natural Soap, Lavender Vanilla Moisturizer Stick, Lavender Vanilla Bath Bomb, Lavender Infused Honey, Lavender Floral Elixir, and Primal SWAK and Heart of Hearts.
  3. Double Heart Pendant Necklace by Lily Nily, available at lilynily.com, $23. A perfect gift for the little girl in your life.
  4. Beaded Neck Heart Print Dress by Stella McCartney, available at Nordstrom, $168.  A little pricey for some, but sure makes for a special Valentine dress for any little girl.
  5. Lavender 4 Elements Bundle with Genuine Badger Brush, available at theartofshaving.com, $95. To keep in theme with the lavender scent I love, this makes a very nice gift set for the special man in your life.
  6. Kate Spade Tom & Jerry Key Fob, available at Kate Spade stores or katespade.com, $78. For all the Tom & Jerry lovers in your life, very cute.
  7. Valentine’s Day Collection – 12 Jars, available at Goldbelly.com, $120. This is a great gift for anyone who has a sweet tooth!
  8. Valentine’s Day Pie Punches, available at any Williams Sonoma store or williamssonoma.com, $19.  These are great for the baker in your life.
  9. Valentine’s Day Pajama Pants, available at vineyardvines.com, $60. Very comfy and cozy for a night in.
  10. Color Infusion Heart Huggie Hoop Earrings, available at alexandani.com, $58. I really like these hoops, very nice for the special lady in your life.
  11. Instax Mini 9 Camera, available at instax.com, available at amazon.com, $70.  These also come in sets which include a camera case and packs of film.  Great gift for a teenager.
  12. Stripe Monogram Petite Bag in Red, available at apolisglobal.com, $78.  These bags can also be customized and personalized.  Comes in several sizes as well.

Do you typically buy Valentine’s Day gifts?  If so, I hope you enjoyed these suggestions. What would you like to receive?

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Happy 2020!

Happy New Year to all of my readers! I apologize, I have not been on here for a while (very busy past 4 years) but I finally have some time again to dedicate to this special place, which I have always enjoyed so much. I look forward to continue sharing travel tips, vacation planning (my personal favorite), restaurant recommendations, book reviews, gift suggestions, parenting advice, etc. I’m certainly not one to stick with resolutions but I will share this one quote, which I believe is a great one for starting the new year:

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May 2020 bring all of you many blessings, good fortune, love, health and happiness!!!

What are you most looking forward to in the coming year? I’d love to hear…

 

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Sunday Night Blues

As far as I can remember, I have experienced the Sunday Night Blues. It all started when I was very young and I was terrified of going to school. Once Sundays came around, I would get very anxious and my stomach would start to rumble and I would ask my parents if I could sleep with them. Of course my mom would say yes, and once I was sound asleep my dad would carry me back to my own bed. This continued for a while. Eventually I got over the fear of school (heck, I even have a MBA), and I was always an excellent student, but my dislike and anxiousness for Sundays, sadly, still exists today. I can’t explain it, my favorite night of the week is actually Thursday, not Friday like most would think. This is because Fridays have always been fun days, whether at school (in college I would always try to take a very heavy load of courses Monday through Thursday just to have Fridays off), and even at work. People are always in such a great mood on Fridays, they go out to lunch, discuss weekend plans…

And of course I love Saturdays too, a fun day to spend with family and friends, doing just about anything you want. However, come Sunday morning, and it’s a completely different story. Something inside my brain starts to shift and the feelings of sadness and anxiousness begin. The pit in the stomach feeling. Dread. Even now, that I am a mom, and I am finished with school and I’m not currently working outside the house. So I ask myself “Why do I still feel this way?” And I just cannot come up with an answer.

Well, I guess I am not alone in this after all. I recently read somewhere that even if you’re lucky enough to not hate your job, Sunday nights are rough. In a 2015 poll from the career site Monster.com, 76% of American respondents said they get Sunday-night blues…and 59% said they experience them “really bad.”

To me, Sundays feel the same as when I return from a great vacation. I always say that some of the best moments of a trip for me are the planning and anticipation. I always get very sad after returning from great trips and also feel this way right after Christmas, or when summer ends and my daughter goes back to school.  And I think that’s how I feel every Sunday night. The weekend is over. Back to the same weekly routine. Fridays are like the planning phase of a vacation, while Sundays are the end of the vacation. And I don’t know about many of you, but in my family, we all experience the Sunday Blues, so Sunday nights are not much fun. Everyone is anticipating the horrible Monday that is creeping up, sooner rather than later.

I’ve read many articles on this topic, which suggest strategies such as, identifying your triggers, better organizing your week ahead, meditation, finding a new direction and/or a new job, scheduling fun things for Sunday instead of Saturdays, etc, etc, etc…

Unfortunately, I can tell you that none of these things work for me. This is not one of those posts that will enlighten you on how to rid yourself of this feeling.  I will simply always feel this way on Sunday nights. I wish I didn’t, but I do.

Do you experience the Sunday Night Blues? If you do, what do you do to alleviate your anxiety, depression or worries? I’d love to hear.

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Fun Facts…

Every once in a while I come across these fun and interesting blog questionnaires.  I am a sucker for those and I think it’s a fun way for bloggers to get to know each other better.  So, here it goes:

1. Something you will…
refuse to do for the rest of your life: Stop traveling. I know many folks feel that it’s not as necessary once you’re older, but I completely disagree. I love to travel, and some of my best memories are from my trips. God willing I will have the means and health to continue traveling into my golden years.
always do forever: Continue to work on my very elaborate scrapbooks! To me, they are the best reminders of family gatherings, fantastic vacations, and important moments in our lives. I not only enjoy working on them but also love to look at them often and reminisce.

2. Something you think is…
certifiably disgusting: Oh, wow, where to start? I find many things disgusting but I must admit I really hate it when people look like they have not showered in days (and no, I am not talking about the poor homeless). I mean seriously, how hard is it to brush your hair and brush your teeth everyday, and let’s not forget some deodorant too!
absolutely amazing: My faith. It has kept me going through some tough moments in life and I am so thankful for it.

3. A compliment you’ve been given that’s made you…
feel on top of the world: That I am very creative. I love to work on many projects and have been told many times that I should start my own party planning business. I love to hear that because I put a lot of effort and time into all of my projects, and I love to see people happy with my creations.
pretty upset: Not really sure about this one, if it makes me upset then it’s not a compliment, right?

4. A name you…
hate: Ofelia. My apologies in advance to any Ofelias out there who may be reading this, but it just sounds like an old granny name. Have never liked it 😦
love: Aside from Carolina and Isabel (my daughter’s names) I also love Olivia. I always said that if I had another daughter (which I did not 😦 ) I would name her Olivia Marie.

5. Something people say about you that you…
know is entirely false: That I am very tough. Definitely not true…if anything I am one of the most emotional and sensitive people I know, I mean, I cry watching TV commercials and listening to certain church songs…many things can actually set off my waterworks!
think is on point: That I am the most organized person they have ever met, and I probably am!

6. A taste you…
can’t stand: Not sure about this one either…hmmm
can’t get enough of: Condensed milk, really, I can have it every single day, right out of the can!

7. A movie you always…
turn off immediately: any westerns, sorry, just not into them at all!
watch a million times: ooh, so many movies I love, but what the heck, I am a die hard Sound of Music fan, and I also love The Devil Wears Prada, Pitch Perfect, The Object of My Affection and Love Actually (yeah, I love my movies)!

8. Animal you…
fear: Oh I think I would hate to come across a bit rat. Just thinking about it is making the hairs on my arms stand!
need in your life right this instant: truly, none. I am just not an animal person, although who can resist a cute tiny puppy?

9. Something you…
will never ever eat: There are many gross things I have seen people eat but I don’t think I could ever put a fried tarantula in my mouth…UGH!
would eat for every meal if you were given the chance: Pasta, any type really!

10. To enhance your looks you…
would love to, but would probably never resort to: getting laser surgery to correct my vision, but would absolutely never have the courage to have someone work on my eyes! I have a huge fear of being blind and heck, I have a hard time putting on my contacts everyday!
just stick to: My regular mani/pedis. I think it’s so important for people to have nice looking hands and feet. I have been getting manicures on a regular basis since I was 16!

So, how would you answer some of these questions?  I’d love to hear!

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Valentine’s Gifts for Him

Many of you are still in New Year’s mode, but January has come and gone (I think I missed the entire month this year) and in just less than a week, it’s Valentine’s Day!  While I myself do not make a huge deal on this holiday, I know many of my readers do.  So this year I decided to round up some pretty nifty gift ideas for that special man in your life. I hope you like the goodies I came across, take a look:

  1. Ray-Ban Folding Wayfarer Sunglasses, available at Bloomingdale’s, $155. Great gift for any guy on the go.
  2. Hugo Boss Polka Dot Dress Socks, available at Bloomingdale’s, $15. Very stylish and elegant socks.
  3. 50 Cars to Drive by Dennis Adler, available anywhere books are sold, hardcover $33. A perfect gift for the car lover.
  4. Fitbit Charge HR, http://www.fitbit.com, $150.  Available in various other colors too.  Perfect for the man who likes to stay fit.
  5. XO Boxers by J.Crew. http://www.jcrew.com, $18.50.  A fun pair of boxers for this day full of love.
  6. The Art of Shaving Pro-Glide Power Shave Set, available at Bloomingdale’s, $175. Another great gift any guy would enjoy.
  7. Men’s Long Sleeve I Whale You Pocket T-Shirt, http://www.vineyardvines.com, $48. This is a really cool t-shirt for the preppy guy in your life.
  8. Ralph Lauren Polo Red Gift Set, available at Macy’s, $89. Everyone loves the classic, clean scent of Polo.
  9. Ermenegildo Zegna Dot Silk Tie, available at Nordstrom, $205.  A bit of a splurge but Zegna ties are always beautiful, they’re my hubby’s favorites.
  10. Single Malt Scotch Cordials, available at http://www.sugarfina.com, $20. The gentleman’s cordial, imported from Germany. A rich dark chocolate shell holds a mini dram of Scotland’s finest.

Have you bought any Valentine’s Day gifts yet?  I hope you can get some ideas from my list. What would you like to receive?My Signature

Happy 2016!

As I am writing my 100th post on the last day of 2015, I thought it would be a good time to share some inspirational quotes for 2016, which I just know will be a refreshing and fantastic new year!  Here we go:

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And for all of us wanting to get healthy this year, here’s one to remember:

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What are some of your favorite quotes?  I’d love to hear…

Happy New Year!

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