Coming Together To Achieve Martin Luther King’s Dream

“This is not a black holiday; it is a people’s holiday,”
Coretta Scott King after President Ronald Reagan signed the King Holiday Bill into law on Nov. 2, 1983.

Today we, as Americans, honor the life and remember the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. It is a solemn day because Dr. King lived his life to fight the oppression and the racism that plagued America during the 1950s and 1960s. He gave speeches, lead marches and even went to prison in an effort to break this curse that had a stronghold on the American culture from the beginning of slavery. He had a dream where people of all colors and backgrounds would come together and live in peace and harmony. Unfortunately, King’s life ended prematurely by an assassin’s bullet in April 1968 while he was in Memphis, fighting for the rights of striking sanitation workers.

The Lorraine Motel, where Martin Luther King was assassination.

JT standing in front of The Lorraine Motel, where Martin Luther King was assassinated.

With the racism and oppression that is so deeply rooted in American culture, we need to come together to break these strongholds and find a way where Dr. King’s Dream is no longer a dream, but a reality. Today, hopefully all Americans are reflecting on the Dr. King’s fight and struggles to make America a country that was described in the Declaration of Independence, that all men are created equal, regardless of their skin color. We all have a part to play in this together. Racism is not a black problem or a white problem. It is a spirit problem that needs to be  broken; and it will take prayer, intercession and effort from everyone.

We need to sit down with people of all colors and backgrounds and find the thread that binds us together as Americans. We all bleed red. We often look at reasons why we cannot get along or look at our differences to keep us a part. But, I know that if we sit down and took the time to communicate, we could find at least one or two things that we have in common. It could be something as simple as sports.

Many Americans, no matter their background, have a passion for a specific sport and claim a favorite team. I challenge you to sit down with someone who does not look like you and see if you can find that common thread. It may be that you have the same favorite team. The both of you might been life-long fans of the Pittsburg Steelers. Or, it might be that you dislike the same team. You might have a strong distaste for the New England Patriots. There is nothing like bonding a friendship over your passion for football: talking about your favorite players, last year’s draft picks, last week’s game, or talking about how much you despise the team who won the last year’s Super Bowl.

Give it a chance. We are not much different if we take the time to find the similarities. So often, we only look at the surface. But if we take the time and dig a little deeper, you will find that bond that can bring you together to a lasting and enduring friendship. And then Dr. King’s Dream will be come lasting reality.

Lessons from Audrey Hepburn to Look Amazing on Prom Night

Many women before us have followed the classic style of Audrey Hepburn, and you can too for prom 2016. Audrey Hepburn’s wardrobe was filled with a range of classic fashion staples women still wear today: the little black dress, fitted pants, cropped silhouettes, and a wide and envious assortment of earrings and hats. She wasn’t afraid to wear a suit or pants and always maintained an incredible aura of femininity with her choices of outfits.

One of the best things that we at vast selection of elegant prom dresses  love best about Audrey Hepburn’s style was her hearty attitude. She could make some amazing ground-breaking choices simple because she was so confident in her own skin and never took life too seriously. So take a leaf out of her book and learn a couple of style lessons from the legend that you can apply to prom 2016.

Image by smithgable987 via Flickr

Image by smithgable987 via Flickr

Sometimes All You Need Is a Simple Dress
Let your natural features steal the attention and choose an elegant and simple prom dress, such as a Scala prom dress designed by SCALA Eveningwear Inc.

Gloves Add An Element of Sophistication To Any Outfit
Weren’t even considering gloves for prom? Think again – Hepburn’s cute look was always elevated by a pair of immaculate white gloves.

Always Accessorize
Not only for prom, but never leave home without accessories to complement your outfit.

A Belt Clasped in the Middle of a Dress Makes for a Lovely Shape
Hepburn would always amp up her dresses with a tight belt and beret. You can skip the beret, but if your dress can pull off a belt, go for it.

You Don’t Need to Be Royalty To Wear a Crown
Hepburn knew that every women deserved to be treated like a princess.

You Don’t Always Have to Wear Your Bangs Straight Across The Forehead
Play around with your ‘do for an asymmetrical and eddy cut-up look for prom.

A Bold Red Lip Will Never Do You Wrong
Audrey Hepburn knew this and used it as an essential trick of the trade.

Colour Blocking Can Create That Classic Look
Add a little fun to your prom style with eye-catching earrings or chunky heels.

It’s Oaky To Step Out in Funky, Bold Prints
When Hepburn wore strong patterned dresses, she balanced them with feminine makeup and accessories.

Why Not Take a Fashion Risk?
Go ahead and wear that unique item or prom dress. Hepburn was a complete individual and it always worked for her.

Find a Practical, Classic Bag
Choose a simple and practical purse to compliment your prom outfit.

Opt for a Different Take on Your Prom Dress If You Really Want to Stand Out
Go for something different like a short prom dress and fascinator to really stand out on prom night.

Soften Up a Short Hair Do With Expertly Placed Dark Eyeliner
Hepburn always ensured she donned an ultra-feminine face because she knew just how powerful great eye makeup could be.

Babydoll Dresses Look Good, No Matter the Era
Just don’t pick a prom dress that is too juvenile-looking, rather something tasteful.

Long Lashes are Ravishing
Beautiful lashes are simply stunning.

One final lesson is to be sure you pick a prom dress you feel comfortable in, and feel like yourself in. It’s important to be natural, comfortable, and happy on prom night so you can dance the night away and make memories that will last a lifetime.

Top Beauty Product Every Woman Needs

Hello Beautiful People,

The weather has been unseasonably warm and cold this winter during Christmas and the temperatures can leave my skin feeling dry and flaky.
Good skincare started in my teens, making sure I used a good cleanser, toner and a good moisturizer.  I have sensitive, acne-prone skin so I had to be really picky what products I use on my face. I introduced serum into my skincare regime a number of years ago, I didn’t see wrinkles but wanted to maintain and keep the skin tightness and youthful appearance I have.

When I apply the serum I massage my face and it becomes a spa experience.

JT applying serum

Serum gives your moisturizer a one-two punch of extra antioxidants and ingredients that works with your moisturizer.

Naturel Commodity Vitamin C Super Youth Serum is  light orange in appearance. A little goes a long way, so no need to increase product usage amount. I like how the serum feels on my skin and it absorbs into the skin and doesn’t feel sticky or tacky. The Serum can be purchased form Amazon and can be purchased for $29.77.

Natural Commodity Vitamin C Super Youth Serum

Natural Commodity Vitamin C Super Youth Serum key ingredients
Clinical Strength  20% Vitamin C
11% Hyaluronic Acid
Aloe Vera

I really like their 90 day Money back guarantee
“BUY WITH CONFIDENCE! Our POWERFUL VITAMIN C is 100% guaranteed to be the fastest working and most effective Vitamin C Serum on the market today. We back our products up with a 90 day full money back guarantee. There is absolutely no risk to you when you ORDER NOW! This serum works extremely well or your money back (you do not even have to return the bottle). Why waste money on unnatural and lower quality products when you have the opportunity to try the BEST Vitamin C Serum on the market with zero risk?”

The bottle is 1.0 Fl. Oz. and it will last a long time. One pump is all I need.

If you are looking for a power pack serum that packs an anti-aging the Natural Commodity Vitamin C Super Youth Serum is for you.

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DISCLAIMER:

BubblingWithEleganceAndGrace.com was able to purchase the Naturel Commodity Vitamin C Super Youth Serum at a discounted price in order to write this review. We received no monetary compensation and all opinions are strictly our own.

A Valentine’s Day Gift Idea For The Man In Your Life

Hello Elegant Readers,

I pray that everyone is having a peaceful start to the New Year. 2016 is looking great with many wonderful opportunities. Be sure to seize the opportunities that are lay ahead and make this the best year of your life.

With the Christmas shopping season behind us, it is time to turn our attention to the next holiday — Valentine’s Day. I know what you are thinking, “I just have gotten over the Christmas season.” Although Valentine’s Day is still over month away, it is never to early to get that special gift for the man in your life. Is your husband difficult to buy for? Does he never give you any clues as what he wants or needs? May I recommend the XYZlicone Wedding Ring to make your decision-process quick and easy. It is available on Amazon and is currently offered on sale for $19.97.

XYZlicone Wedding Ring

My hubby wearing his XYZlicone Wedding Ring as a right-hand ring.

Buying a Valentine’s Day gift for your hubby may be more difficult because women’s gifts typically are the main focus. Flowers and chocolates make great gifts for wife and girlfriends, but for hubbies, not so much. What better way to show your man that you love him, but with a bold black silicon ring, which could worn as a wedding ring or as a right-handed ring. My hubby wears his a right-hand ring and wears it with a pinky ring, as seen in the photo above.

The XYZlicone ring is quite versatile and I would recommend it for anyone who is looking for a unique piece to give your hubby.
* The silicone is durable and holds up to everyday wear and tear. My hubby has not had any problems with his since he has been wearing it.
* The ring is stylish and on trend right now. I have seen a few other men wearing similar rings while I have been out and about.
* The ring makes a bold statement, but it so light-weight that it can be worn without even noticing it.
* The 8mm width to the ring has a noticeable presence, but without being overpowering.
* The ring will slip on your finger with ease because it is a flexible silicon.
* When purchased from Amazon, it comes with a second ring as a bonus. Just a note, the second ring is one size up from what I had ordered.

I recommend the XYZlicone Wedding Ring to anyone who looking for a unique style that is comfortable. Whether you pick this for your hubby, or men, you are purchasing this for yourself, neither one of you will be disappointed.

If you have already purchased this ring or if you are will purchase, let me know what you think about it. I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments section below.

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DISCLAIMER:
BubblingWithEleganceAndGrace.com was able to purchase the XYZlicone Wedding Ring at a discounted price in order to write this review. We did not receive any monetary compensation to write the review and all opinions are strictly our own.

Enjoy Your Inner Glow

Hi Beautiful People,

The weather has gone from warm, to wet and rainy, and now to fresh fallen snow.  Wintertime, seeing the snow falling is such a peaceful and beautiful scene.  Temperatures in the Midwest will be dropping to the twenties by this evening. Being moisturized is a must because being inside with dry heat can leave our skin feeling dry. There is nothing worse than my skin feeling dry and itchy from the heat.

True Glow Eye Cream Valentia.com

An important part of my facial regime is a eye cream packs a punch; but is also gentle to my skin.  I want to look bright-eyed and refreshed with that inner glow never leaving my skin. Who wants to hear from a friend or a colleague that you look, tired especially when you are not? Not me.

I recently had the opportunity to try the VALENTIA TRUE GLOW EYE CREAM Intensive Corrective Eye Treatment. I wanted to see how it worked around my eyes because my skin is very sensitive to creams and serums. I had to be very selective because some products in the past have left my skin red and itchy.

The claims on the Valentia packaging include:
Reduces wrinkles
Nourishes & hydrates
Tightens Eye are
Brightens dark circles
Restores radiance
VALENTIA also says the eye cream is alcohol free, paraben free and suitable for all skin types.

Key ingredients (listed on packaging):
* Astanxaanthin: A powerful antioxidant that increases moisture levels, smooth fine lines and wrinkles, and restores elasticity to the skin.
* Resistem: Natural plant Stem cells repair protects the skin from stress related aging.
* Vitamin C: Leaves the skin smooth and visibly brighter for well-rested and bright eye look.
* Organic Rose Hip oil: Intense hydration to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
* Arnica: Anti-inflammatory agent key to the restorative process.

VALENTIA TRUE GLOW eye cream is made with 98% natural ingredients, is manufactured in the United States and is cruelty free. The glass bottle is 1.18 FL. OZ, so this will last me a long time.

Directions:
Apply every morning or night after cleansing. Apply a small amount to the eye area using a gentle patting motion.

Applying eye cream

These ingredients sound great; but what matters to me is how does this eye cream feel on the skin.  When I looked at the directions on the box it was nice to see that the eye cream can be applied to the entire upper and lower eye area. The cream smells citrusy and fresh but not overbearing. The fragrance did not irritate my eyes or cause them to tear up. This is a major plus to me. The consistency of the cream is thick, almost whipped and has a light orange appearance.

1 pump

How is the process of the product coming out of the pump? I only needed one pump for both eyes and for each section. When I applied the cream as directed day and night for three weeks it didn’t feel itchy or irritating. It went on smooth and blended into my skin without feeling oily. I don’t have much darkness under my eyes, however they do appear brighter. I don’t have a lot of puffiness; but its nice to have tightening benefits for the eye area. The Valentia True Glow Eye Cream is an effective cream and I would recommend it for anyone looking to add a new product to their beauty regime.

VALENTIA TRUE GLOW EYE CREAM can be purchase from Amazon for $24.99 (retails for $54.99). If you have Amazon Prime, you can get shipped to you for free and have it in two days.

Please let me know if you decide to try it.
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DISCLAIMER:
Bubbling with Elegance and Grace was gifted one 1.18 fl oz. of VALENTIA TRUE GLOW EYE CREAM.  My review is my honest opinion and when I run out I would purchase this eye cream.

How To Add Strength and Shine to Your Hair

Hello Beautiful People,

JT using Sheilo products

JT using Sheilo products

I hope you have had a wonderful Christmas and New Years Day. The Christmas Holiday was rainy and warm. It had felt more like springtime than winter. With El Nino throwing the weather patterns all out of whack, you just don’t know what to expect from day to day. With the warmer and balmy days with higher humidity, my hair can get frizzy. It is these days when I need a good frizz control product to add to my hair to keep down the poof. All hair products are not created equal and are not good for my hair. Many times, frizz products can contain alcohol or will make your hair feel tacky. I have to be selective and oh so cautious about what I put into my hair.

Shielo offers a Frizz Control Shine Restoration Oil that retails for $34.99 on its website. It does not leave my hair feeling sticky or tacky. I put in on my freshly-cleansed hair right out of the shower. I do not use the oil with any heat tools in my hair. I have been chemical free and relaxer free for more than six years and my hair is naturally curly.

Shielo’s website says the Shine Restoration Oil:
SMOOTHES, SOFTENS AND ADDS SHINE
CERTIFIED ORGANIC INGREDIENTS, PARABEN FREE. 1 OZ 30 ML
Premium hair oil for restoration of shine and smoothness. Speeds up drying time by 40%. Its color enhancement properties last long term, and it increases hair manageability and removes frizz. Protects from heat styling. Users can expect significant results after one use. Long term use reverses damage caused by chemical treatments, heat styling and coloring. For all hair types.
– adds strength and promotes hair healing
– renews the hair cell structure
-heat wave technology protects the cuticle.

JTshielo

JT after using the Shielo Shine Restoration Oil

When I style my hair, I add a couple of pumps to the palm of my hair, rub my hands together and apply to my hair as I style it. I wear my hair more naturally curly but also straight on occasion. The product does not feel hard in my hair and smells earth and clean.  The oil contains paraben-free organic ingredients. Some of my favorite ingredients include apple fruit extract, lemon fruit extract, lemon peel extract, sugar cane extract and cocoa extract. I would recommend this product because the restoration oil does not flake, does not feel oily, goes in my hair quickly and leaves my hair feeling smooth and not hard.

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DISCLAIMER:
Shielo provided BUBBLINGWITHELEGANCEANDGRACE.COM with one bottle of the Frizz Control Shine Restoration Oi to write this review. We received no monetary compensation and all opinions are honest and strictly our own.

Avoiding the Christmas LetDown

Hello Elegant Readers!

I pray that you are having a wonderful and peaceful Christmas Holiday Season! Christmas is my favorite time of the year. My wife and I decorate our home with four trees and put up lights on the outside. With all the Christmas hype, are you feeling a Christmas Letdown? In speaking with people and how they describe their holiday, this is a very true emotion felt by many people.

JT and Tree

JT standing next to one of our Christmas Trees

The buildup to Christmas is months in the making. You start seeing retailers advertise for Christmas in July specials. And then once Halloween is over, the gift-giving season is in full-swing. Every store you go into, or every website you click through, they are trying to sell you something. Black Friday Steals, Doorbusters Deals, Cyber Monday Deals! It’s everywhere! Retailers are telling you that you need to buy a gift for everyone, from your mailman to your co-workers, to your long lost cousin Jimmy who you haven’t seen in twenty years.

Christmas Day arrives. You have your gatherings, whether with family or friends. You distribute your gifts, and partake in a feast (or two) and have a sweet treat (or two). And then before you know it, it is over. Just that fast, all the hoopla is over and Christmas is done for another year. It’s time to start planning for New Years. And the Christmas LetDown starts! Why? With the months of planning and purchasing gifts, preparing meals and organizing gatherings; it is all over in a matter of few hours. Here are a few quick tips to avoid the LetDown and to be able to enjoy more of Christmas.

Celebrate the True Meaning of Christmas
With retailers forcing their agenda of purchasing a gifts for everyone; you must step back from the commercialization and shift your focus on why you are celebrating Christmas. My wife and I celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, first and foremost. Without Jesus, there would be no Christmas and no gift-giving season. If you are a Christian, Jesus should be the center of every part of your life, including Christmas. As Christmas Day approaches, take some time to read about the Birth of Jesus and reflect how His birth forever changed the world and forever changed humanity. It is an amazing story that should never be forgotten through the deluge of gifts. Many churches often have a Christmas celebration. Find one in your area and be sure to attend. This will help keep the true message of Christmas in the foreground.

Make Christmas Last More Than One Day
Christmas is only one day on the calendar – December 25th. Many people plan their celebration for that day, or maybe Christmas Eve. Since the holiday is on a random day during the week, many people only have that one day to celebrate before going back to work. And with New Years Eve the next week, people turn their attention to the next holiday. The key is to make Christmas last longer is to spread out the festivities. If you are planning a gathering for friends, try for the weekend before. If your family is out-of-town, you can visit them on a weekend in January. Another thing that I like to do is to continue saying “Merry Christmas” beyond December 25. If you have many people who you are giving gifts to, then spread out the distribution throughout the entire month of December. If you have more than one gift for a spouse or a child, then give the gifts to them over a course of days. All of these things will keep the Christmas Spirit alive and burning in your heart.

Avoid the Hoopla and Enjoy the Season
The Christmas season is a fast-paced ride and it can be quite overwhelming. The key to really enjoying the Season is to step back, slow down and enjoy every moment. If you are buying gifts for friends and family, be sure to make a list of who you are buying for, how much  you want to spend for that person and then start searching for the gift as early as possible. Don’t wait until the last moment before going out and finding the gift. It will make the buying process less stressful. If you are making home-made gifts – cookies, lotions or crafty items, make sure you have all of your supplies and start the process early. Then as the Christmas approaches, you are already finished and you can sit back and enjoy visiting with family and friends.

The Christmas LetDown can easily set in when we get caught up in the craziness that other people have placed on Christmas. If you step back and remember why you are celebrating and learn how to avoid the rush and hoopla; then Christmas will never be a burden again. You have to put your mind to it and make an effort to follow through with these tips.

Let me know if you have felt a Christmas LetDown and what you did to do to combat it. Or if any of these tips have helped you through the Season.

My Favorite Way To Spend Extra Time With My Doggie

Hey Beautiful People,

Hope you are having a lovely time during the hustle and bustle of the holidays. It only gets stressful if you let it, don’t filter it in and try to enjoy the occasion. When I feel that stressful spirit come, I immediately have to say out loud, “I will not receive that, I take joy in my life!” Christmas is my favorite time of the year. It is so easy to get caught up in the commercialization of the Christmas holidays and I refuse to play into it. When I come home from work, my hubby I like to go outside and play with the puppies and have fun.

Gio and Vinny on the set

Gio and Vinny on the set

Do you know that the number one way I find time to spend extra time with my puppies is during their grooming time. I know you are saying, ‘you have got to be kidding me?’ No, I am not. When I get the comb in my hand and start brushing my collie, Vinny doesn’t like to sit still. He runs around and come back and run around and come back until he is tired. Collies shed practically all year long. There is not a time when I don’t get some underbrush. My beagle, Gio has short hair; but will still shed a lot of hair.  How can I tell?  When I rub his back the hair just comes on my hand. His hairs are shorter and he is quick to finish but he will sit still for the minute and then he is off  sniffing out new territory in the backyard.

Spending time grooming your dog has many great benefits:
1) Bonding with your pet. Having this close time with your dog will create a strong bond and will foster trust and affection.

2) Getting to know the places on your doggie’s body that may have hair knots. You have to get a good quality comb if your dog is prone to knot and tangles. We recently had a chance to sample the RollinPets Brush and it worked wonderfully on Vinny. He gets tangles and knots behind his ears and this Brush removed them without a problem. In the past, we usually had to cut them out; but not with this comb. The comb also removes the undergrowth without a problem. As the seasons changed, the thickness of Vinny’s hair changes and that undergrowth needs to be removed. The RollinPets Brush glided smoothly through his hair and quickly removed that undergrowth with ease. The metal bristles on the brush actually massaged Vinny and relaxed him. He was actually enjoyed the grooming session for a change.

The amount of hair removed from Vinny after using the RollinPets comb

The amount of hair removed from Vinny after using the RollinPets comb for the first time.

3) You can check their ears, teeth, and nails to see if they need any extra cleaning.  Checking your pets coat is a good thing to do because sometimes you might find a scratch that you would not have normally seen or you might find some dry skin. If your dog is comfortable with you checking his ears, teeth and nails; this is a key time to do it.

4) After you groom your pet, you can run around the backyard or throw a ball or stick until you both are ready for a nap. When I throw the stick for Vinny to catch it the tenth time, he looks at and sits down because he has officially worked out for the day.

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DISCLAIMER: I received the RollinPets Comb at a discounted price in order to write this review. I did not receive any monetary payments and all opinions are strictly my own.

How to Find the Right Gym

Getting fit is one of the hardest things that most people will do in their life. In order to make some headway in this battle, you will have to find a way to incorporate daily exercise into your life. The first thing you have to do when trying to get fitter is to find the right gym in your area. In most cases, you will have a number of gyms to choose from, which means you have to do some research to narrow the field. The following are a few tips on finding the right gym in an area.

weights

The Location is Important
The first thing you have to consider when trying to find the right gym is where it is located. You want to make sure the location of the gym is close to your home and work. The more convenient the location of the gym is, the more apt you will be to go on a consistent basis. The time and effort you spend trying to find the right gym is well worth it in the end. Having the right gym is a big piece of the weight loss puzzle.

The Equipment is Vital
Another very important thing you need to consider when trying to find the right gym is the equipment they are using. Ideally you want to find a gym that is only using the most up to date equipment on the market. The higher the quality of the machines in the gym are, the easier you will find it to get the right results. Make sure you go around to a few different gyms to find out what type of things each of them has to offer. By taking your time and looking at all of the options, you will be able to find the right one.

Assess the Monthly Costs
The next thing you have to consider when trying to find the right gym is the cost. You need to make sure you are able to afford the membership and that it is worth it. The more you can find out about what is being offered versus what you are getting, the easier you will find it to get the right results. Most people are looking for deals on both the clothing they need and the gym membership is essential. Finding good Fabletics deals is easy and will allow them to get the clothing they need to start their fitness journey.

Taking the time to weigh all of the options is the best way for a person to find the right gym and fitness clothing.

About the Author
I’m a regular fitness fanatic. My name is Tanya AKA Tanya the Tank (I’m not as big as you’re imagining)! I train 7 days a week, 365 days a year! Most of my training time is done using free-weights, with one day a week focusing on cardio. I write about various aspects of strength training, and training choices. Follow me for more!

*promotional content*

4 Tips to Keep the Financial Peace During This Christmas Season

Hello Elegant Readers!

Christmas if fast approaching. For some people the season is more stress than joy because they focus too much attention on buying gifts for people without having the money to do it. Here are some common sense tips to make sure you can enjoy the holidays without getting into financial trouble.

Decide who you are buying for before you start.
If you have a large family or have many friends, you may not have the finances to purchase for everyone. Decide before you start purchasing any gifts who you are buying for. It may just be your spouse, your children, your parents, your in-laws and a select few other people. You may not need to buy something for Uncle Jimmy who you only see once a year at Christmas or Cousin Betty who moved to Florida twenty years ago and you have not seen her since. You may need to let your people know that you are cutting back on the number of gifts you are purchasing because you are want to be financially smart.

Know your limit on how much you are spending on each person.

Once you have decided who you are buying for, then you must decide on an amount you are willing to spend. For some people, you may want t0 spend a little more, like your parents. For others, you may be a little less, like a niece or nephew are just babies. One way to stick with a designated amount is to buy a gift card to the person’s favorite store. Gift cards are an excellent idea because the person can get what he or she really wants and you don’t have to guess. Also, it prevents you from buying multiple gifts and going over your designated limit.

Do not feel obligated to buy gifts for someone just because they buy you a gift.

Many times, you will receive a gift from a co-worker or a neighbor. You may feel like you are obligated to purchase something for them. But check your list, if they are not on your original list, don’t feel like you have be buying something for them. If they truly gave you the gift from their heart, they should not be expecting anything in return. You can give them a thank you note, expressing your gratitude. And then for their birthday or another date in the future, you can give them a gift.

Consider homemade gifts.
Some times the best gifts are not the ones purchased, but the ones that are home made. If you have a favorite recipe, nothing can warm a person’s heart like homemade cookies, cakes or breads. I have given friends and family homemade cranberry bread and I have received the most enthusiastic “thank you’s”. And the cost for an entire cake is generally in the $5 to $10 range. Using this price range can help you expand your list of people who you can give to.

Photograph by JT

Homemade Cranberry Bread

Another alternative, homemade lip balm.

Another alternative, homemade lip balm.

The holiday season should be a joyful and happy time spent with family and friends. You don’t want to get consumed by the need to be buying for everyone and hurting your financial stability in the process. Set your limits, stick to it and it will be a happier time for everyone.

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