Why We Spent More For Less This Christmas

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I have three kids (6, 3, 20 months) and the amount of stuff we have acquired is embarrassing. In fact, when I was tucking in Quinn tonight he said that he cannot even find the stuff he loves to play with anymore. We wanted to celebrate Christmas. I don't think there is much that beats the butterflies and excitement on Christmas eve for a child. I remember those feelings fondly. While I feel the pressure to live up to those expectations, the last thing we wanted to do was fill our house with more stuff just for the sake of stuff. Eleanor seemed oblivious that she should even want ...

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Happy Family Holidays

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This post brought to you by Happy Family Products . The content and opinions expressed below are that of Balancing Home. One of the best part about having children are the holidays. I have always loved the holidays, but as our family has grown--my love for the holidays has grown too! Holidays and the traditions that surround them are the things childhood memories are made of! Look at each of my babies on their first Christmas! As exciting as celebrating your first holiday with your child is, it can also be stressful. Holidays mean lots of people, places to go and crazy ...

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Holiday Porch

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Because our porch looked like this for nearly seven years... It was hard to ever believe we could have a beautiful holiday porch. This Spring we finally gave the porch a makeover and I finally had more then an eye sore to decorate for the holidays. This holiday porch is brought to you by Balsam Hill. The garland, topiaries and wreath are all from Balsam Hill and the quality is amazing, you can check them out here. I live in Wisconsin so I needed something hardy to hold up to a crazy winter. The topiaries are in a cement-like pot. I dropped them right into my flower pots ...

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Elf On The Shelf Stationary

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When we started this tradition years ago, we found ourselves wondering two nights before Christmas-- How exactly do we end this? Our little goodbye letter was whipped up quickly and over the years we have improved it. We created a fun pre-written letter on official Elf on the Shelf letterhead (designed by my husband). The letter was for our family so it said children, because we have children. Lots of folks have written to me asking if there could be an option for one child. Go down to the bottom of this post and grab the pre-written letter for one child. Click on over here for ...

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Having a Bedtime Is Hard

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This is by far the hardest of the 3o day challenges I have done yet! Lights out by 10:30 felt a lot like mission impossible. Whole30 and blogging for 30 days straight was definitely easier. As I embark on changing my life, 30 days at a time--I realize I will not be perfect. I was perfect for the first 20 days, but was definitely more lax--missing my bedtime a few days at the end. What I learned from attempting to climb into bed at 10 and lights (and phone) out by 10:30 is that a lot of the things that keep me up can wait or are literally nothing more then a diversion. I learned that the ...

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Thanksgiving Journals & Christmas Shelves

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Well we made it through our first week post-Thanksgiving break. We really enjoyed our break. With Quinn in school full-time (kindergarten), having him for a whole week made it feel like the good old days! To top it off, Ross was off of work Tuesday-Sunday. The kiddos fit in two sleepovers and we had two days of Thanksgiving. We also took a trip to Chicago. We were able to spend the day at the Museum of Science and Industry and then grab dinner and dessert in the city before shooting up 94 floors to top of the John Hancock building. The view was gorgeous! Over break, we saw Big Hero 6, ...

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Kid Craft: Christmas Tree Bar

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This is such a fun and simple project for the kids...and even the adults! Eleanor and I got a little crafty today. Gluing things is one of her favorite ways to create now-a-days. She helped me choose all of our Christmas tree bar fixings. She loved watching the Cricut cut them out too. We created these simple 3D Christmas trees using the Cricut, some paper and glue! The pattern for the tree is a Cricut image and I have it all set up for you here. Eleanor chose stars, candy canes and ornaments. Once she was armed with glue, she got to ...

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The Holiday Feeling

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Yesterday, we adopted a 3-year-old Golden Retriever. We named him Harry.   He is pretty popular and we have had a lot of guests today. Everyone came to meet him today and everyone commented on how nice our house smells. It smells like a giant Christmas tree and I love it! I was lucky enough to get an amazing package of goodies from Thymes. Everything was packaged so beautifully. I'm lagging on basic housework, let alone getting holiday decor up so this was the perfect step for me. I think these products would make great hostess or teacher gifts. I ...

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Ultimate Holiday Gift Guide – For Health & Wellness

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I'm so excited to be joining all these bloggers in the ultimate holiday gift guide blog hop and giveaway.     Gifts for the Baker | Stocking Stuffers | Gifts for Jewelry/Bling Lovers | Gifts for the Cook |Gifts for Little Girls (Ages 0-6) | Gifts for the Little Artist | Gifts for Ladies | Gifts for Little Boys (Ages 0-6) | Gifts for Big Boys (Ages 7-12) |Gifts for Big Girls (Ages 7-12) | Gifts for Teen Girls| Gifts for The Decorator | Gifts for the DIYer | Gifts for the Foodie | Gifts for Men | Gifts for the Host/Hostess | Makeup/Beauty Gifts | Gifts for the Entertainer ...

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Halloween Happenings

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Here in Wisconsin, Fall is short-lived. I'm bummed at how quickly fall has passed us by. It was snowing as we trick-or-treated yesterday!! We had big dreams for fall. We managed the hayride, hike, pumpkin farm, trick-or-treating, the apple orchard, scary movie night, baking fall treats and celebrating Quinn's birthday. We still have a shot at a few of the items, but we might be too late on some. The kids getting sick, definitely made it hard to enjoy the season. Halloween was really enjoyable, despite being really cold with snow flurries. Quinn didn't have school, which allowed us to ...

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