Making it Personal: A Gift Guide

Nov
14

Have you started to consider your Holiday Shopping yet? Maybe you are looking for something useful, beautiful and personal all at the same time. If so, then here are a few ideas for you. Shutterfly.com has so many customizable gifts to choose from. Your recipient will love that you took the extra step and made a gift just for them. So take a look at some items you won't want to pass up!

These personalized pewter ornaments are great for friends and family. They are the perfect little keepsake, fit right into stockings and look great on the tree.

Get creative as you want with these large photo gallery notebooks or these 5x7 notepads. We go through these like crazy in my house so I love to stock up on them every so often. Clark likes to take his custom designed notebook to school with him and Allie has a stack in her room that she and I color in everyday. Upload a special photo, cute stock image or downloadable art to make your gift unique.

Everyone would love the chance to dress up their desk with a fresh new look each month. These new personalized easel calendars can be displayed vertically or horizontally. My favorite is this classic black and white one.

I also love this desk calendar with a built-in easel for display. Make it your own with tons of designs to choose from.

Maybe consider making an impression with custom drinkware, decanters, growlers and cutting boards. These items make memorable gifts when you add a monogram, family name or personalized message!

Headed to a Holiday party or dinner? Try dressing up a bottle of wine with a festive gift bag embroidered with a message or icon for the perfect hostess gift.

Have fun making your gifts more personal this year! I hope these ideas made your Holiday shopping a little easier.

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Holiday Cheer

Nov
13

Have you starting planning for the Holidays yet? I've gotten better with all the little details since having kids that's for sure. The both of them just take so much joy in all the traditions. 
Each year, I work toward the end goal of collecting enough Christmas ornaments to make an impact on our large Oregon grown tree. I am happy to report that after a decade or so we are finally there!
I am also all about customizing this year. I am loving THESE Photo ornaments that in time become family treasures, THIS beautiful name specific wrapping paper that automatically makes your gifts more thoughtful, and THESE Personalized Cards that shout "HELLO, HOW ARE YOU?" to out of town relatives. So if you are on the hunt for a few Holiday gems then take a look at my new favorites!

Tinyprints.com is my go to for all our gift wrap this year. There are so many beautiful customizable designs to choose from and they all look great together! I also love that this paper is nice and thick so won't tear apart as I am trying to wrap. I spend a good amount of time wrapping oddly shaped toys and stocking stuffers so I love that I can pull this paper in each direction without having to start over again. So if you want great design and color under your tree this year then take a look.

Another Holiday design/decor favorite of mine are these chic pillows. I love having them around the house. They make great gifts too since they are customizable. I am in love with all the vibrant festive colors, smart modern graphics and tasteful eye catching patterns to choose from.

I know that the Holiday's can get a little busy for everyone. I hope this go to resource has helped you plan ahead a little bit! So have fun ramping up your home for the Holiday's, getting those cards designed and customizing some beautiful wrapping paper.

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Christmas with Kids

Nov
05

It's funny how many of the new Christmas traditions we come up with for our kid's are just variations of the one's we grew up with. From a very young age I loved having the freedom of choosing gifts for my friends. Each year my Mom would give me a small budget to spend at the local drugstore however I wanted. Usually I'd gift each friend something like THIS, THIS,  or  THIS (seriously no idea they still sold all these 90's gems). While I am not giving Clark $20 to walk to the store on his own anytime soon, I will let him sit with me and choose a handful of bulk Christmas crafts, candy or toys for his friends via Orientaltrading.com.

The kids and I had so much fun putting together little affordable gift boxes for each friend and neighbor. It's great how most of the items to choose from come in bulk so that everyone on your list or classroom is easily covered. The gift boxes they offer are also small enough for little hands and fit nicely in the kid's backpacks to take along to school.

I've put together a list of links to our favorite kid's classroom gifting items for you! Let me know if you decide to put this one on your list of traditions. On another note, we also like to let the kid's choose a toy to give to their local toy drive each year as well. Usually Clark will pick a toy for a boy his age. I've found that the Holiday Season is a nice time of year to teach the joy of giving, generosity and compassion for others. Have fun gearing up for the season with your little ones!

Oriental Trading Kid's Christmas Store:
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*Special thanks to the Oriental Trading Company for supporting this post!

Halloween Decor

Nov
03

I hope everyone had a great Halloween. In celebration of the Holiday, I've teamed up with Framebridge.com to offer you 15% off your first custom frame order. Just use code AJCJ15

We kept our Halloween fun and easy with friends. Our pre trick or treating party was the perfect way to get our little ones to eat some dinner before filling up on candy. We had a handful of kids and parents over for pizza, appetizers and juice boxes (or wine if you were a grown up). After collecting candy, our group of about 20 ended the night a little later than usual. Overall, it was just super fun and laid back. I think it might be a new tradition.

* A Ninja Turtle eating a piece of pizza before guests arrived.

* A Ninja Turtle eating a piece of pizza before guests arrived.

My approach to decorating this year was simple. I opted to put out a few decor favorites rather than plastering the entire place in fake spider webs like I usually do. This Frankenstein print was perfect and is a definite favorite in our house now. Even though it says "Happy Halloween" Clark wants it in his room year round. The frame turned out beautiful.

Framebridge is an affordable online shop that makes it simple and easy to create art for your home. This Halloween print was something a design company gifted my Husband at work a few years ago. We were happy to finally get it framed.

To get started, simply find something you love and need framed. You can either send in your own photos and prints or upload art direct to their site. Just gather the specific dimensions, select a color and style of frame and wait for your pre-paid packaging to arrive.  
They have 25 frames and 30 mats to choose from so the options are endless! The finished frame is delivered right to your door—that’s it! The best part is that custom frames are just $39-$159 and shipping is free.

*Some of our favorite guests arriving to the party!

*Some of our favorite guests arriving to the party!

*The kid's loved Trick or Treating this year. These guys have been friends since they were a few months old! So cute to see them together.

*The kid's loved Trick or Treating this year. These guys have been friends since they were a few months old! So cute to see them together.

Have fun framing and don't forget to use code AJCJ15

Exposed Shelving: Styling Tips

Oct
21

What are you reading? I've been all about accessorizing with books lately. One of my favorite design accents in our house is our exposed shelving. I was eager to get them stacked a filled right away since they are such a huge focal point in each room downstairs. That said, styling them was a bit of a puzzle. While modern built ins look lovely architecturally, the storage space itself is completely exposed so it's important to keep everything on them organized and intentional. 

I am constantly on the hunt for new and interesting books. They have given me some great styling ideas and have also created great style when stacked and placed throughout our house. Books add height for balance, fill space in an uncluttered manner, and provide a little inspiration when needed. Here are my current favorites.

COFFEE TABLE/DESIGN BOOKS:
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Group certain types of books that you may use more often together by space. For example, store design and fashion books close to a common living space and place your cookbooks or juicing books near the dining area. 

KITCHEN/COOKBOOKS:
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SHELVING AND ACCESSORIES:
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