Hostess, Teacher & "Just Because"

Hostess, Teacher & "Just Because"

First of all, I know I owed you this post yesterday, and for that I am not that sorry. I had a crisis on my hands Tuesday night, you see. Namely, a "The Christmas Decorations Look Really Awful On The Mantle" crisis. 

This week I started putting up Christmas decorations. I decided to decorate my TV room mantle sans garland this year because I was afraid Margaux would pull it down. And the mantle looked....fine. But the more I stared at it the more I was like, "NAHHH MAN. IT NEEDS LIGHTS!" So off to Michael's I went on Tuesday, to get battery operated lights to string around it. And I did that but it turned out to be that GAH AWFUL purple light? You know the kind I mean? They're described as "cool white" lights?? More like UNCOOL white. (Good one, I know.)

So my UNcool white lights just sat there and I kept staring at the mantle. And I was like OK maybe I can live with this...and then we put the tree up right next to the mantle....WELL THAT'S WHEN THE CRISIS OCCURRED. The "warm lights" versus the UNcool lights was too much for me to handle. And I TOOK EVERYTHING DOWN. A few hours of work down the drain! I thought Joel was going to die but I was like, "No dude, I'M going to die if I stare at these cool white lights any longer." The was an emergency. The kind of emergency where when you call the doctor's office and the voice says, "If this is a TRUE medical emergency, please hang up and dial 911." Well I was 911-ing all over my house on Tuesday night. We got through it, but I didn't end up having time to write my post.  HOWEVER, I DID do the RIGHT THING and I hung the garland. Margaux will need to fall in line. Amen.



Anyway, I love this time of year for many reasons, but one of them is giving gifts. Gifts is one of my Love Languages. I think it's a misconception that if Gifts is your Love Language you just like receiving them. Negative, ghost rider. I enjoy giving gifts way more than getting them. I remember once when I was little my sister told me that one day I'd like giving gifts more then getting them. And I was like, YEAH RIGHT PASS ME MY TAMAGOTCHI!! But now it's really true. 

Instead of linking you to a bunch of websites I decided to make my own list of gifts you can give a hostess, teacher or to someone "just because." I pride myself that nothing on the list is more than $15. Most coming in around $5-$7! Everything falls into the "making home life more lovely" gift category. 

Let's start with the one of the best gifts in the game:


Wine is always welcome! And it's really easy to "plus up" (Editor's Note: second use of "plus up" on the blog so far. My mom will be thrilled.) a bottle of wine by adding a bow and ornament! And don't limit yourself to bringing wine just to a friend or a party. Last year I gave Poppy & Felicity's teachers a bottle of Relax Riesling and it went over QUITE well! This year I'll do the same thing and just add a pencil ornament. If you aren't into the ornament idea you can do something else-- like socks!

  • Letter and Reindeer ornaments are from Target $3 each
  • #2 pencil ornament is from Joann's Fabric. $5
  • Socks are from the $1 bin at Target

Depending on the type of wine you buy, this makes a great gift for $10 or less. (Trader Joe's is a great option for getting delish but cheap wine, by the way.)

BoomChickaPop. Holidrizzle Popcorn

Holidrizzle is one of the greatest made up words I've ever heard. If you see me around and I tell you, "Have a nice Holidrizzle weekend!" you'll know why. This popcorn is so so so good! You haven't lived until you've gotten into a committed relationship with Frosted Sugar Cookie. I got these bags at Walmart but I saw them at Harris Teeter too. They aren't gigantic bags, so they make a really cute gift as a set of three. I *think* they were about $2.75 each at Walmart. But they don't stick around long so grab a bunch, wrap a bow on them and call it a day! 

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You know I be loving some cocktail napkins! And if you didn't know that go read THIS post. #knowledgispower. Giving a hostess cute cocktail napkins is thoughtful and actually very helpful! There have been a few times when I've give someone napkins, and they've opened them on the spot and used them. And then my heart fluttered. And an angel got it's wings. 

You may be thinking, "But I don't have time to go to Homegoods every time I go to someone's house or an event." And I might agree with you IF IT WASN'T THE GREATEST PLACE ON EARTH. But seriously, the key is you go and get a haul of like 5 packs of napkins. So you just HAVE them. Same with ribbon from Michael's. Create a little gift giving closet for yourself! (I could do a whole post just on the concept of a gift closet!) And if you don't use them or give them to people you pack them anyway with the holiday stuff for next year. They aren't a huge investment at $2.99 a pop. Remember me who wants to sleep under a blanket of cocktail napkins? Have I ever steered you the wrong way??? 

  • Christmas Cheer dinner napkins are from Homegoods $4.99. The ribbon is actually chalkboard ribbon I got from Michael's. My version looks slightly ghetto but if you are artistic, you could do some really cool stuff with this ribbon!
  • Santa napkins and coasters are from Homegoods. Napkins $2.99. The coasters came in a 3 pack of different designs. $4.99 (Yes I was pumped for 12 CUTE coasters for $5!)
  • Merry napkins from, you guessed it, Homegoods $2.99. Straws from the $1 aisle of Target. Perfect for a Ladies Night!
  • Another great option is cocktail napkins and a holiday soap! Both from Homegoods and the gift only totals $7

Tea Towels

Tea Towels are the unsung hero of hostessing. I didn't even know about them until a few  years ago. They're oversized thin towels (not dish towels) that are great for laying out on your counter or coffee table, and displaying stuff. Like food! 

Exhibit A:

That right there is a Tea Towel. My mom gave me a couple a few years ago and I was like what is this?? But then I remembered she always had them arounddddd when we were growing up. She's the TT OG (get it?!) so I listened to her and never looked back. They help frame what your displaying but also catch a mess. Use a tea towel, and it will be lovely, that's FOR SURE.

You can get neutral ones or themed ones depending on your pleasure. The one I've folded above is from Homegoods $3.99. (In the placemat/apron section. Also at Marshalls and TJ Maxx) I included the letter ornament bring the gift to a total of $7! Tea-TOTALLY worth it! (Editor's Note: Joel and I attempted to do "Teetotaler Tuesdays" for awhile. It didn't work.)

Holiday Decor

I'm not sponsored by Target or Homegoods for this post put I probably should be. All the items in this Home Decor section are from Target. I must admit, Target is killing it in the decor department these days! Holiday and otherwise. 

  • The little ceramic house is my absolute favorite. Possibly of this entire post! I asked Joel how much he thought it was and he guessed $20. I was so freaking excited to report it is $3 (Three) DOLLARS!! Target deal aisle at the front of their stores. They have different style houses too. I snagged 2 for myself but I wish I had gotten10. Gift someone one (or two!) of those houses with a pack of tea lights! OHHH GIRLLLL, just don't be surprised if they decide to tattoo your name on their chest. For reals. 
  • The bird and deer are both from the Target Holiday shop. They have a few different birds in various cold weather gear which is hilariously cute. $5! The deer was $7 but he's worth it because he's timeless and big and impactful! (Bow wasn't included but looks pretty good, I must say!)

Last but not least, a wonderful buffalo plaid pillow. It's not ginormous but what it lacks in size it makes up for in festive coziness. $5 in the deal aisle. The ornament is from the holiday shop and it says JOY. $3 They have a ton buff plaid ornaments options. I gave this to my sister when we went to her house for brunch last weekend!

So there you have it! My semi-DIY Hostess, Teacher or Just Because gifts. I feel like this is just the start because I created this list from basically two stores. (Do you need any other stores though LEZBEHONEST?!) There are so many cute options out there! Do you have any staple items you like to gift for the holidays? Please tell me because I'm always looking to expand my horizons!

Check back tomorrow for my Take 5 Friday! And just as a friendly reminder if you like what you're reading and you want to take this relationship to the next level, please subscribe to the blog through the Homepage! 

Take 5 Friday

Take 5 Friday

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