The Gift That Makes Everyone Happy

Since my family is all spread out–and so are my friends–I’m always struggling with the perfect gift to send over the holidays.  Growing up, my parents would often rely on Hickory Farms to send to long distance friends or to bring to holiday parties.  In my opinion, it’s the perfect gift for the person who has everything because you know you’ll be having unexpected company and the food won’t go to waste.  I’ve never been disappointed with a gift from Hickory Farms.  Whether it’s their fresh fruit, savory meats, or delicious cheeses, their food is always tasty and the presentation is spectacular.  And for that person who has a sweet tooth?  Hickory Farms has amazing cookies and chocolates.  As part of the Mom Central Hickory Farms blog tour, I received the Orchard’s Bounty Gift Basket.  I love that it combines fruit, meat & cheese!

Orchard's Bounty Gift BasketWhile searching the Hickory Farms website, or visiting one of their familiar mall kiosks during the holidays, you’ll notice there is something in every price range, making this a perfect gift for just about everyone on my list…and the $3 shipping is a nice bonus!  I hate it when you spend a bunch of money on a gift, then shipping costs another 10 bucks.

If, like me, you’re a little more likely to spend your money with companies that give back, you’ll love this: For every Party Planner Gift Box sold, Hickory Farms will donate $5.00 to Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry Campaign, a national nonprofit that hopes to end childhood hunger in America.  Hickory Farms also provides free military shipping to military APO/FPO addresses on select products, allowing our troops across the globe to share in the holiday spirit & traditions.  Love that!

Disclaimer: I wrote this review while participating in a campaign by Mom Central Consulting on behalf of Hickory Farms and received a product sample to facilitate my review.  All opinions are my own.

5 Things I Love During The Holidays

I always try and think about things I like to do with my two kids during the holidays.  I want them to love the holidays as much as I do!  My parents made the holidays so special for us growing up and I want to do the same for my kids.  Here are five things I love to do with my kids during the holidays:

1.  Decorate the Tree and the House Together

We always set-up the tree the day after Thanksgiving.  It’s become a family tradition of ours.  It started when we got our Elf on the Shelf book.  The story talks about the Elf, ours is named Chuck, coming out the day after Thanksgiving.  We decided we would set-up the tree and put Chuck in the tree to start his magic.  It’s so much fun, and the kids really look forward to “the day AFTER Thanksgiving.”  They also LOVE putting the decorations on the tree and decorating with lights outside.  Such a joyous time!

 

 

 

 

 

 

2.  Bake Cookies Together

I am the baker of the family and my hubby is the cook (as many of you probably already know).  I really love to make my “special” chocolate chip cookies and holiday sugar cookies!  I got this really cool cookie press from Pampered Chef that I use to shoot cookies out of!  The kids think it’s so funny to use this and the cookies come out great!  I love baking during the holidays and the kids LOVE to join in!  I think I need to host another Pampered Chef party soon here in RI!  They have so many wonderful hostess specials and I LOVE the stuff I get from them!  Also, check out MamaLuvsBooks soon where we will have a giveaway for the Pampered Chef cookie press!!  You can make your own holiday cookies with your kids!!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

3.  Go to Shows Together

We LOVE shows!!!  We started taking my daughter when she was two years old and have been going ever since!  We saw Go Diego Go Live (an AWESOME show!), and I couldn’t believe how much she loved it and watched the entire show!  We have been to Dora, Barney, Thomas, The Nutcracker, Zillion Bubble Show, and much more!  This year we are going to Disney On Ice at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center in Providence.  The kids can’t wait!  I am doing a giveaway on my personal site, MamaLuvsBooks, so if you want a chance to win a 4-Pack of Tickets to the show in Providence, please click on my site and enter!  The winner gets a choice of any showtime.  Hope you win and hope to see you there!  We will be there having a BLAST!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4.  See Family During the Holidays

I LOVE to see family during the holidays.  We are the only ones from both sides of the family that moved away from the DC area, so whenever we get a chance to see family I love it.  The past few years we have rented a beach house and all stayed together for a week during the holidays.  With the growing family and multiple babies it is getting a bit harder to do.  This year my brother and his family are coming to visit in RI and so is my husband’s sister’s family.  I can’t wait to see everyone!  Holidays are about being with family!!!

5.  Find Something Charitable for the Kids to Get Involved With

I really like the idea of showing my kids that there is more to the holidays than just “getting presents.”  I want them to focus on being generous and loving to others and learn the real spirit of the holidays.  I would love to help out with my daughter at the Sharing Locker, a group in town the helps provide people with their essential needs.  My son is a bit young for this.  Last year we also helped with the Adopt-A-Family Program in town where you get wish lists from families that can’t afford to purchase everything on their own.  It’s nice to know you are getting something that someone really wants, and it’s such a nice feeling helping out others that need it.  I want my kids to learn to WANT to do this.

Happy Holidays Everyone!!!  What are your favorite things to do during the holidays?

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Kristin Wheeler