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Hooray, the holidays are finally here! With Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday behind us, you may have finished your holiday shopping but for the rest of us, the holiday shopping procrastination is in full swing.
If shopping for your boyfriend, brother, husband or father is still on your to-do list, we are here to help! Buying for a man can be difficult, as a they don’t always mention what they want, and some rarely even find interest in receiving gifts. My husband has both of these characteristics – he doesn’t like shopping, he doesn’t like making lists, and he never tells me what he wants so what the heck am I supposed to get him? A razor that he will end up returning? Or a tie that he will never wear? We all want to get useful and/or meaningful gifts for the special men in our life but it’s hard to figure out where to start!
You may have seen us talk previously about all the amazing gifts for women across the spectrum – from graduation gifts to new mothers to wives but what about all the gentlemen of the world? They deserve the best presents as well. From a woman’s perspective, I’ve picked out a batch of presents that I think would cater to most men of the world, based on 5 different categories – the tech guy, the outdoorsman, the loving dad, the businessman, and the funny guy.
Someone’s personality and hobbies can help determine the type of category they may fall under. Does this special man in your life like joking around or technology, or is he business oriented? If you are unsure on which category your man falls into, just take a look at our gift ideas and see which ones you think would work best for him. Personally, my husband is really into technology; he wants the latest and greatest gadgets from phones to watches to video game consoles and for the most part, these items are on the expensive side so knowing which ones are “the best” or most popular is an important factor in my purchasing.
The Tech Guy
One of the hottest gadgets of this year! You can hook these up to a Bluetooth device, and hear sounds with clarity. You can also take hands-free calls and it is now wireless for up to 30 ft!
With Apple TV, you can stream the apps you use on your phone straight to your television. This would make watching Hulu Plus or Netflix with the family so much easier.
This watch lets you get your smartphone notifications straight to your wrist. You can listen to music, use a GPS, and get app notifications without carrying around your cell phone. This is the perfect gadget for any tech savvy guy!
An oldie but a goody. This style of sunglasses is versatile and can be worn on any given day, and especially while out hiking or fishing!
A high quality pullover is always a great gift option. Patagonia is a very well known brand that specializes in outdoor wear so you know this will be durable enough for him!
You can never go wrong with a backpack. It’s multipurpose and can be used for hiking, camping, fishing and any other recreational activity!
This one is a little corny, which makes it the perfect present for a lot of dads out there! This one from Etsy is one of my favorites – I could totally see my dad wearing it and rocking it.
This little device acts both as a charger and as a phone case. It’s also waterproof, exceeds Military Standards for protection and can provide up to 100% extra battery life. This is great for any busy man who is running around from meeting to meeting all day.
A go-to gift for any businessman is a nice tie! My dad is a businessman but not really a huge tie wearer. However, I think one of these designer ties linked above would really make him feel special! Even men like expensive things once in awhile.
This is a fancy and more expensive gift idea! The new MacBook has an all new design, all-day battery life and retina display. Its compact and lightweight size make it ideal for the busy businessman.
The holidays aren’t complete unless there are ugly Christmas sweaters involved! Bring a little laughter to his life with this silly Hotline Bling Sweater featuring Drake.
This gift idea is kind of gross, but kind of funny; it really does taste like bacon! What guy doesn’t want a gift that has to do with bacon?
Why not get him something silly that could also keep him warm? He’ll never be jealous of another man’s beard again with this silly present!
My Guy Isn’t on Here; I Still Don’t Know What to Get!
It’s okay to get creative and combine your own ideas! Don’t let this process stress you out. The holidays are supposed to be a wonderful time of the year, full of cheers, happiness and surprises! Each and every man is different, so try to make your gift as fun, meaningful and unique as you can. After all, it’s the thought and intention that counts right? Follow your heart, and he won’t be disappointed!
It was a crisp day in December, eight years ago, when Nelle & Lizzy’s business really began to skyrocket. Oprah, the renowned talk show host, television producer, actress and philanthropist, listed the Nelle & Lizzy’s Triple Name Ring in the O List of Oprah’s Favorite Things for Christmas 2007.
I think it is safe to say that many female business owners look up to Oprah Winfrey as an inspiration and as a mentor. She has built a billion dollar empire around her name, including a television show, magazine, and TV channel – some things which are a fantasy for a lot of us. Her success, empathetic heart and philanthropic endeavors are only of a few qualities that make her a wonderful person to look up to.
Who run the world? Girls. (But especially Oprah!)
Most companies can only dream of having one of their products mentioned by Oprah, and the ladies of Nelle & Lizzy were lucky enough to be part of this recognized group. Page, one of the co-founders of Nelle & Lizzy, was generous enough to walk us through the events before and after one of their jewelry pieces was mentioned by Oprah. Take a look at the events from an owner’s perspective who got to personally experience Oprah’s Midas Touch:
“Martha [founder] and I sold the first official Nelle & Lizzy stamped ring in January of 2006. The idea for the business was two years in the making, researching processes and designing our one of a kind silver name rings. Both of us had other jobs when Nelle & Lizzy started. We knew we had a great idea for a business that we were passionate about but in order for us to both jump in full time, we needed to get our rings noticed. We started sending samples to editors of magazines and we were lucky enough to have our first feature in December 2006 in Parents Magazine. Sales jumped dramatically – but that wasn’t hard when we were averaging about 8 orders a week!
Then one of the biggest opportunities of our careers was almost lost in a voicemail! After the Parents Magazine feature, we decided to get a dedicated phone line and hire our first employee. About a week into this new arrangement, someone realized the phone had a beeping noise when it was picked it up. Since the system was new, no one realized it meant we had a voicemail. On the recording was a message from Gayle King, Editor-at-Large of O Magazine saying they had received a ring from us and loved it; she wanted to talk to us about how they could feature it in the magazine and the message was a week old! I will never forget, I was at the post office next door to our office when Martha came running in with a huge smile on her face and told me the news. We were ecstatic!
Next came the waiting game. We were told we were being considered for Oprah’s Favorite Things for Mother’s Day issue but the timing was tight and they were not sure it would make it. The deadline came and went. After a while, we started to get discouraged but then in September came a call with an intern confirming pricing and we were told it was slated for the November issue! So we ramped up stock and waited…. And then it happened – we were told we had officially been chosen to be on the O List of Oprah’s Favorite Things for Christmas 2007.
The magazine hit the shelves one night in late October and our website visits soared. We sold more orders in the first week after the feature than we had in the first year and a half of our business. We literally worked almost everyday in November and December of that year filling orders and trying to keep up the customer service which was then (and still is today) so important to us. We hired lots of extra help to get us through the holidays and make sure everyone who ordered by our deadline received their ring – and we delivered every single one. We wanted to make sure that if Oprah had recommended us to her readers we were going to do our best to do her proud.
Oprah and Gayle King put us on the map and we will forever be grateful for the boost it gave our struggling business from the beginning. The O List feature not only increased sales dramatically, it gave Nelle & Lizzy a stamp of approval that is still important to this day. Our Triple Name Ring is still featured on Oprah.com and we get referrals and sales from that site daily. We haven’t had the chance to meet either of them in person but if we did I think we might both cry out of gratitude – they changed the path of our business which changed the paths of our lives. We were able to quit our other jobs and focus full-time on the business we love and we have never looked back.
Nelly & Lizzy will always be part of a very small group of extremely lucky small businesses that were transformed by Oprah’s Midas touch. While we have always known that we make a unique product with mass appeal, it was Oprah who introduced us to the world (literally).”
A lot of us like to know the background behind a company, what they believe in, and how they have come to be where they are today. Nelle & Lizzy started out as two mothers who simply wanted a stamped piece of jewelry to showcase their children’s name. They have since formed that idea into a company that provides classic and sophisticated personalized jewelry for any person or any occasion.
Eight years later, the Nelle & Lizzy Triple Ring is still one of their most popular products and always a great gift option for mothers, grandmothers siblings and sisters alike.
Oprah herself added the most perfect (and humorous) description on her website about the Triple Rings, asking “Are you too busy and sleep deprived to remember the names of your children? Here’s a gift for mothers—or grandmothers—that’s perfect whether the kids are in diapers or in college.”
Thanksgiving is a special time for friends, family, and amazing food. We plan and make decorations for the weeks leading up to the holiday, and spend hours cooking and baking in the kitchen the day of. It may be one of the few times of the year that you really get to spend time your family. Whether you are hosting a Thanksgiving dinner, or bringing a cooked dish to your aunt’s house, you want it to be perfect!
And now, thanks to Pinterest, you can now get all aspects of your Thanksgiving Day as close to perfect as possible!
It’s no surprise that you probably have your typical Thanksgiving decorations that you pull out every year and dessert recipes that have been passed down through your family for generations, but it doesn’t mean that you can’t add new recipes and traditions to your Thanksgiving Day.
Plus, while you’re browsing, you’ll probably find some fabulous outfit options to wear for the holiday!
Taking into account my love for Pinterest, it was easy to find a million ideas that I wanted to put into use this holiday season but I was able to narrow down my favorites to 12 simple Thanksgiving Day ideas. I hope they make your holiday planning and implementing a little bit easier, as well!
Festive Thanksgiving Decor
For this this runner, all you need is a roll of Kraft Paper, a permanent marker (and a pencil and eraser if you are going to draw out your your designs or calligraphy first). I think writing the names over the place settings in a gorgeous font would be a beautiful addition for the adult table, and a fun font for the names on the kid’s table, along with crayons and pencils for them to color on the table runner with. This is perfect for both kids and adults, so it’s a win-win!
There are a lot of things I like about this pine cone garland: it’s pretty easy to make, looks adorable, and can be kept up and reused as Christmas decor! Those are the best components for a great piece of decor. Plus, if you buy the cinnamon-smelling pine cones, they will also add a fall aroma to your home!
There’s a lot you can do with this one to change it up for your personal style and decor preferences. You can easily change out the raffia for burlap or ribbon, or substitute the popcorn kernels for coffee beans or acorns – and if you decide to use acorns, you could take the kids outside to find acorns and make it into a fun afternoon activity!
The Idea Room Blog walks you through the steps on creating the wooden box in this centerpiece if you can’t find a pre-made one to buy. The pumpkins, candles and berry twigs can be purchased at most craft stores like Michael’s, Hobby Lobby, or even at the Dollar Store! Without having to make the wooden box, putting this centerpiece together only takes a few minutes.
Fun Thanksgiving Snacks
This platter speaks for itself. This is an adorable way to display hor d’oeuvres or snacks in a very festive way! It is suggested to make this the morning of Thanksgiving, or late the night before and cover it with something like saran wrap so the cheese and meat do not dry out.
This recipe puts a festive spin on the original and most delicious snack we all know as puppy chow; but it’s not for puppies – if you are unfamiliar with puppy chow, you can read all about it here. By substituting regular Chex cereal for Cinnamon Chex, plus adding in some candy corn and orange candy melts, you have yourself a fun pumpkin flavored dessert!
This is an adorable and healthier snack option for Thanksgiving. Simply add pineapple, tangerine, and whipped cream and you’ve got yourself a little candy corn snack (with a lot less calories than the candy!)
You can’t have too many turkey plates, right? This is another adorable turkey themed plate of food (and a little healthier than the cheese tray). The Handmade in the Heartland blog also tells you exactly how to make the yummy caramel sauce that could be used for future recipes and desserts as well.
Easy Thanksgiving Desserts
The total time it takes to make these pumpkin truffles is only 5 minutes. You can’t beat that for a festive dish! And can you ever go wrong with pumpkin and chocolate? I don’t think so.
This is personally one of my favorite Thanksgiving desserts to made. I actually learned this recipe back in high school in a home ed cooking class and made this for my family’s Thanksgiving for the next couple of years, so safe to say this is definitely an easy recipe to make. And of course it is absolutely delicious.
This is a fantastic little dessert for after your Thanksgiving meal. I know we all love a rich dessert on Thanksgiving, but there are also some of us that just want a light dessert after such a heavy meal and this is the perfect option. It would be great for portion control, too!
Reading that title just screams “yum!” in my brain. Not only does this recipe sound delicious, but there are literally just a couple steps involved – what could be better?! This would be a great dessert option for planned or even last minute festivities.
Most of us have our Thanksgiving menus filled with grandma’s recipes, and traditional decor that we’ve used for years, but it might be fun to slip in a few new recipes or play with some different table decor. We spend hours planning and making Thanksgiving dinner and perfectly plan out everything entailed in our festivities; hopefully these simple ideas that have been compiled from Pinterest will help save you some time and help you execute an incredible Thanksgiving Day for your friends and family!
If I were to ask you to think of the biggest fashion faux pa’s or fashion “rules”, what would immediately come to your mind? A few that pop up in my brain are: wearing white after Labor Day, not wearing black and brown together, and wearing mixed metal jewelry.
And I think the time has come to nix these rules.
Come on, ladies, rally with me! It’s the 21st century. We have self driving cars, a woman running for president and phones that are smarter than most of the human population. I would even dare to say that fashion “rules” themselves are on the verge of being nonexistent.
Plus, fashion rules are meant to be broken anyway, aren’t they?
If you are unfamiliar with the rule of mixing metals, it claims that you should always wear the same colored jewelry when it comes to the metal. Meaning that you should wear all silver, or all gold – no silver necklace with a gold bracelet or any other combination of the sort. If this was still the case, I would be limited to wearing silver tones all the time since my engagement ring and band are white gold. And that would leave me so sad because I love jewelry of all colors!
Assuming that you are like me, you may have grown up being told to always match your jewelry. If you want to wear a rose gold bracelet, you should also wear a rose gold necklace, so on and so forth. My grandmother or mother would never have left the house without all of their jewelry completely matching.
(Update: my grandmother is still set in her ways but my mom is now a metal mixing queen!)
This is an old school rule (that I’m not sure how it started) but fashion has made progressive strides since fashion no-nos like this were relevant. Fashion these days are more about not following the rules, and wearing what makes you happy and feel confident. I’m not saying you should be wearing similar outfits to Ugly Betty, but if you like wearing gold yet you have a cool skin tone, wear it anyways! If you like the way it looks on you, then wear it. Wear it with confidence and no one will question it.
Some of my favorite mixed metal pieces from Nelle and Lizzy are listed below. All of these items have a subtle mix of metals. Whether you are interested in incorporating mixed metals into your wardrobe or want to add more of these type pieces into your collection, these items are the perfect options!
The Family Necklace is one of the newest pieces to the Nelle and Lizzy collection. You have the option to mix the charms to create a necklace with gold and silver, or get a more classic look with all gold or all silver. I love the mixture of metals and textures in this necklace, along with the uniqueness of it. I really do love everything about it – the chain, the length, the nameplate on the side, and the charms. It just is the perfect combination for an amazing necklace!
Personally, I like this one a lot because of obvious reasons (they’re adorable) but also because they have different bangle options – small and large. I like this myself because I have really small wrists (most bangles don’t fit me, actually) so I like that there are some size options. Bangles can tend to be a difficult gift to give or even buy for yourself because sizing does matter, even though bangles are typically a “one size fits all” kind of product. I’m also fond of the nameplate and the personalization options; you can get your children’s names, your sibling’s names, or even just some inspirational words that you can look down upon and will bring a smile to your face when you see them.
I would dare say that the Trinity Ring is the ultimate mixed metal piece. Nelle and Lizzy took one of their most popular triple rings and put a modern twist on it. The Trinity Ring combines 14kt gold, white gold and rose gold and would be a perfect heirloom piece to be passed down through your family. You are able to customize the text to be stamped on it and choose from two different fonts!
What Fashion Means to Me
To me personally, fashion is a way to express yourself and there are no rules that every single person should adhere to. Fashion is what you make of it. It’s all about what you like wearing, what flatters your body and what makes you feel great about yourself!
I am a fashion lover and advocate and over the years I have developed my own opinions about fashion and some of these opinions come from my rebellious personality. I’ve always been the rule breaking type and this trait doesn’t stray much when it comes to fashion, either. I won’t lie, I love to mimic outfits I find on Pinterest but I also love to put my own spin on them and wear items that fit my own personal style. I love wearing white after Labor Day and absolutely love how brown and black pair together to form the perfect outfit!
I also don’t believe that anyone should follow trends just to follow trends. Just because flared jeans are back in style, doesn’t mean you have to wear them. Just because you see everyone wearing outfits with pattern mixing doesn’t mean that you have to wear the same outfits. If you want to match all your jewelry, match all your jewelry! If you want to wear gold and silver jewelry, wear it. I think everyone should do what makes them feel confident and feel good about themselves because that is what fashion is all about.
Comment below and tell us what fashion means to you or what fashion rules you like to break! You can also reach out to us on Twitter at @nelleandlizzy or on Instagram at @nelleandlizzy – we would love to see how you style your favorite Nelle and Lizzy pieces!
Have you ever been stumped while trying to buy a present for a friend or for your wife? Or can you just not figure out why “green isn’t your color?” Well, the simple answer might be that green actually isn’t your color.
Picking the right color of clothing or type of jewelry can be tricky, but did you know that certain colors typically look better on certain skin tones? The “guideline” is that warm skin tones should typically wear gold, and cool skin tones should learn towards wearing silver. This isn’t always a rule that needs to be followed, but it is a good start pointing if you are buying a gift, or even just interesting knowledge that can be applied to your own wardrobe. Knowing how to dress for your skin tone can help brighten up your complexion and make you feel more comfortable and confident in what you’re wearing!
There are many phases that you go through during your college years…
College is a time of being on your own, learning who you are as a person, and gaining new experiences. Maybe it’s a time of taking chances and becoming the person you’ve always wanted to be. College experiences vary for everyone, and are particularly different for those who join fraternities or sororities.
Thanks to the girls in my sorority, I learned even more about myself than I thought I would in college. The girls I met through this process taught me the meaning of sisterhood and what it means to be a part of a different kind of family. Being involved in a sorority can be one of the most life changing parts of college. The girls you meet and bond with, along with all the crazy experiences you get into together are one of a kind, and forever remembered!
The history, traditions and long-lasting friendships is what makes me proud to be part of a sorority. Sororities and fraternities are social organizations that have been around for centuries. The first Greek letter organization was Phi Beta Kappa at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, VA. in 1776. It was originally formed as a secret society that was literary and social in nature, but not Greek. This society had all of the same components as today’s fraternities and sororities: a motto, rituals, a badge, a bond of friendship, principals of high idealism, and an urge to share the organization’s values through expansion to other campuses (San Jose State University).
Fast forward to 1882 – after dozens of more chapters and fraternities fought to be formed and fraternity membership numbers reach nearly five million – to when the first women’s organization, Gamma Phi Beta, was named a “sorority.” Before this, all of the societies were called fraternities because that was the only word that existed for these organizations. Women were part of fraternities, also known as sisterhoods, but quickly noticed that a distinct organization for women was needed, and thus, “sororities” were born and I am so glad that they were!
Graduating With a Sorority
Being able to experience graduation with a few of my sisters made this momentous occasion even more special. Graduation, defined as “the receiving or conferring of an academic degree or diploma”, is really so much more than just that. Graduating college is a milestone in every 20-something’s’ life. This is the time of passage into adulthood and into the real world. Out the door goes the time of all-nighters and skipping class, and now enters the age of resume posting, interviewing and finding a dream job! (or any job, really)
Specifically for sororities, graduation is such a special event. Graduating is both a happy and sad occasion; it is happy because you are excited to move forward with your future, but also a little sad because you have to leave the girls who have been a big part of your life for the last couple years. Each sorority has their own rituals and traditions for graduation, and each one is unique to their chapter. Nonetheless, graduation traditions are something that each sorority celebrates and looks forwards to. Almost all of these ceremonies involve the sisters in the sorority giving each senior a memorable gift. These gifts are typically something nice and an item that they can keep forever – jewelry is a popular present.
Sorority Jewelry Gift Ideas
No matter what sorority, or for what occasion, jewelry will always be a classic gift for any woman. All of the Nelle and Lizzy collegiate jewelry are official licensed Greek products and I’ve picked out a few of my favorite pieces from their Sorority Collection to share with you. Each of these pieces are timeless, beautiful and a wonderful way to showcase your sorority pride – whether a current student, graduating senior, or proud alumni.
If you’re interested in shopping more of our Sorority Collection, you can browse the whole collection here.
This dainty necklace comes with 3 different charms – an oval stamped with the ZTA Greek letters, a circle charm with the initial of your choosing, and a perfectly wrapped turquoise bead – the perfect addition for ZTA! This sterling silver piece of jewelry is simply designed, but will be the perfect reminder of all the great memories you have tied with Zeta Tau Alpha.
This perfect piece of sorority jewelry would be a great gift for graduation, or really any other occasion. You are able to customize this double ring to say exactly what you’d like! As a gift, you could add that person’s name and the Pi Phi Greek letters or your name and your little’s name. This would even be a perfect gift for yourself, as the customizable options are endless!
This Tri Delta Sorority ring is another perfect gift. It has a similar style to college rings and all the silver in this ring is sterling silver. The stamped plate (where the Greek letters show) is available in silver and gold bronze and the back of ring can be stamped with up to 12 characters! Typically names are put here, but you can add anything you’d like that fits within the character limit.
This gift option isn’t particularly a “sorority” item but I just thought it was a different, yet subtle option for a sorority gift. With these customizable stacked ring set, you can make a stack that represents a sorority without having the Greek letters blatantly stamped on. June and August birthstones (pink and green) would be perfect for Delta Zeta, or September and June birthstones (blue and pink) on a gold ring stack would be ideal for Delta Gamma. Add another ring with the recipient’s initial and now you have a personalized ring stack with an understated message of sorority pride.
With a special gift from Nelle and Lizzy, you will give a wonderful woman the chance to show off her sorority pride for years to come. It will be a present that will let her always remember and cherish the moments she had in college, and even more so with her sorority.
Tis the season for holiday party planning. With Halloween happening in just a few weeks, you know we have been constantly perusing Pinterest for costume and party ideas – as every mom does these days. As we all know, Pinterest has a plethora of amazing ideas but also a bunch of impossible projects. Assuming you are a busy mom, like we are, you probably want to find the most creative, yet easy ideas for your children’s holiday parties. Whether planning your own Halloween party, or making snacks for your child’s class, we’ve come up with some great party, snack, and costume ideas for all you moms out there!
Thanks to Pinterest, women around the world have found amazing ways to recycle their old t-shirts, and 32,465 ways to organize around your house. The one major downfall of Pinterest is that many people end up creating the same things – how many melted crayon art projects have you seen at this point? I can usually point out a Pinterest project a mile away. With over 70 million users, repeat and insanely popular projects are bound to happen.
Around this time Halloween costumes are popping up all over your Pinterest feed. You may even be able to tell what costumes will be popular this year. We’ve seen a lot of them too but have been trying to filter out the ones that have been overdone. Don’t get me wrong, every one of us loves the movie Frozen – girl power! – but how many little Elsa or Anna’s knocked on your door last year? Way too many to count. To prevent that this year, we’ve put together a few costume ideas that are a nice middle ground between unique and not too weird.
Crayola Crayons: Do you have a girls crew going Trick or Treating together this year? This costume would be so adorable for them and the possibilities are kind of endless; there are so many colors to choose from! For this crazy hair, use an empty water bottle to make the hair stand up and tie the top with a hair tie. Then use the temporary colored hair spray that can be found at most costume shops.
Scuba Diver: I don’t know about you, but I haven’t seen too many scuba divers walking around on All Hallow’s Eve. This is another super simple costume that would be great for one child, or a group of kids.
Owl: This costume might be a bit more time consuming than the others but well worth it. You can even use an old t-shirt for the feathers! Hello, money saver!
Lego: When The Lego Movie came out last year, there was a big Lego craze. Now that it’s a year later, the chances of running into many yellow-headed people should be lower this year. And this one actually looks pretty fun to make!
For some parents, finding snacks that your child will eat (and even more so, enjoy) can sometimes be a difficult task but with these adorable Halloween snacks, we don’t think you’ll have that problem. These spooky snacks are not only awesome decor, but also a delicious snack! They would be perfect if you were throwing your own Halloween party, or if you had to bring Halloween snacks to your child’s school for a party!
Magic Potion Punch: This is a drink that is exciting to watch! You read that right – yes, exciting to watch. This spooky drink is compiled of lemonade, grape juice, and lemon-lime soda and when you drop in a spoonful of Jell-o, it makes a fizzy concoction that is perfect for the occasion.
Bowl of Worms: How creepy and cool is this Halloween snack!? We were grossed out but also in awe when we came across this one. All it takes is some Jell-o and a handful of bendy straws!
Banana Ghost ‘Popsicles’: Who can say no to a (semi) healthy kid’s snack? These adorable ‘popsicles’ are only made up of bananas, white chocolate (or yogurt) and little chocolate chips!
Pumpkin Fruit Cups: Talk about a simple Halloween snack. All you have to do for this one is buy the appropriate amount of orange fruit cups, and decorate the pumpkin faces on top! You can easily cut out these jack-o-lantern faces by hand or probably even find some type of die cuts. And if your kiddo is old enough, they can help you cut these out and make it a fun task to do together.
Decorations, whether it’s everyday decor in your home or decor that you only pull out for special occasions, can really set the atmosphere and mood. Take a birthday party, for example. Imagine walking into a birthday party that had no balloons or streamers… How depressing. The same idea goes for any other occasion – a wedding, Christmas or Halloween party. Decorations make all the difference, which is why we compiled a list of a few awesome, but simple decorations to make for Halloween.
Bat Garland: This is a super simple, yet dramatic project. It involves a free download of bat templates, black construction paper, ribbon or twine, scissors and a whole punch! For the crafty moms out there, you may even have most of these supplies already.
Ghosts in a Jar: We just can’t get over how cute these little ghosts are! Not only are they adorable, but they only take a few supplies to make them! This would be a fun afternoon project for you and a fellow mom.
Candy Corn Pumpkins: Some of you may think these have been a bit overdone but we think it’s a project that is cute enough to make it to our list. All you need is some paint and a somewhat steady hand!
Window Monsters: This is one of our favorite Halloween decorations! We have done this in passed years and it was a hit! Neighbors told us how awesome (and scary) our window monsters were. You can copy these monsters or if you’re feeling creative, make your own!
To see these Pins, along with some of our other favorite holiday ideas, they can be found on our Holiday Board on Pinterest. Tell us what some of your favorite Halloween decor, snacks or costumes are over on Twitter at @nelleandlizzy. We’d love to hear about your Halloween tricks-and-treats!
Can you believe it’s already October?! We are excited for some sweater weather to hit us here in Texas, but even more excited to help support Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
As you are probably well aware of, October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The popular ‘pink month’ was created back in the 1980s in order to promote education about breast cancer prevention and issues, as well as raise funds for research. Nowadays, a lot of organizations are helping to promote the cause such as the NFL who wear pink accessories all month long and special pink jerseys for some of their October games.
Spreading the word about the cause and donating to popular organizations like the American Cancer Society or the Susan G Komen Foundation are definitely two great ways to support Breast Cancer Awareness Month but there is so much more you can personally do to support those who are battling cancer, especially your family and friends.
How to Help Someone Who is Battling Cancer
Whether your friend is in the hospital battling cancer, or in an outpatient setting, there are ways for you to offer help, encouragement and support. Studies have shown that those who are battling cancer need the support of their friends and family. You may not think there is much that you can do for them, but that’s usually not the case. The question is, where to start?
For some of us, it’s hard to find ways to help when someone is battling a life-threatening disease. Flowers probably won’t do any good, a home cooked meal might be nice but what is something truly significant that would help? Friends and family of those battling cancer often feel helpless, like there’s nothing they can do that would make an impact when in fact, there are ways to help. The American Cancer Society provides a whole printable PDF booklet ideas on “How to Be a Friend to Someone with Cancer” and one of the first places they suggest to start is to talk with your friends; Learning the process of treatment and about the changes your friend is (or will be) going through will help you adjust your efforts to what they may need most.
As I was reading through this lengthy list of helpful hints, I started thinking of my personal experiences and noticed a few of these tips that would come in handy for me. Below are a few that really stood out to me:
- Send brief and frequent notes. Just something to let them know you are always thinking about them.
- Speak to the family to find out ways you can help. They will probably be the best resource to tell you what your friend needs.
- Spend time with your friend. Bring a puzzle, crossword or activity for you to do together, or even to do alone if your friend doesn’t have the energy to participate. You can watch their favorite show or movie as well.
- Support your friend’s feelings. Let them be negative or withdrawn; don’t try to preach to them about being strong and urging them to fight the disease.
- Surprise your friend with small gifts. Think of things that would be useful, creative, and fun.
Another way we can help fight this far too common disease is by educating ourselves and others! The world has made strides in the studies, awareness and prevention of cancer. Unfortunately, it’s not possible to know exactly why one person develops cancer and another doesn’t, but studies have shown some common risk factors and preventative measures that we can all try to apply.
Cancer.gov is a wonderful resource for learning about cancer prevention and risk factors. They explain that when scientists are looking into preventing new cancers from starting, they look at risk factors and protective factors. “Anything that increases your chance of developing cancer is called a cancer risk factor; anything that decreases your chance of developing cancer is called a cancer protective factor.”
Risk Factors for Cancer
As stated above, risk factors are anything that increases your chances of developing the disease. As of yet, there is no sure-fire way to prevent cancer but more studies are starting to show some variables that can aid in cancer prevention. Particular risk factors can be avoided but many cannot. For example, use of tobacco can be avoided but inheriting certain genes cannot.
Most cancer risk factors are initially identified in the epidemiology studies. In these studies, scientists look at large groups of people and try to identify the similarities between those who develop cancer and those who don’t. These studies cannot prove that a behavior or substance is definitely a favorite in the development of cancer but it’s a good place to start. Some of the most-studied and most comment suspected risk factors of cancer are:
Cancer prevention is actions to take that lower the chance of developing cancer. Many factors – like our genes, lifestyle and our environment can increase or decrease the risk of getting cancer. The more studies that are done on this disease, the more information we have to work with and take preventative measures on.
Specific to Breast Cancer Prevention
Sadly, breast cancer is very common; more than 3 million US cases surface every year which means we need to be taking more preventative measures! We are tired of losing loved ones to this disease – especially since more preventative measures are being discovered. Lifestyle factors like staying physically active and limiting alcohol consumption are some of the most common and well-known ways to help prevent cancer. Other factors that you should think about and take into consideration as suggested from Mayo Clinic are:
- Smoking. Accumulating evidence suggests a link between smoking and breast cancer, particularly in premenopausal women. Not to mention that not smoking is a great overall positive health choice.
- Breast-feeding. A lot of mothers want to breastfeed for as long as possible (whether for emotional or health reasons) and it may be doubly beneficial since it may play a role in breast cancer prevention; the longer you breastfeed, the greater the protective effect.
- Controlling your weight. Being overweight or obese shows to increase the risk of developing breast cancer.
- Being physically active. This mostly ties into the idea of controlling your weight. Being physically fit and at a healthy weight can lower your risk of breast cancer. 150 minutes a week of moderate activity is recommended.
By following these guidelines for cancer prevention, it is one way we can help lower the cases of cancer and decrease the deaths caused by this disease.
Let’s Stamp Out Cancer!
Join us as we help fight this disease! Through the entire month of October, 20% of the purchase of any cancer related product will be donated to the organization of your choice. Designated items are marked with an asterisk and can be shopped by visiting our site here.
Our line of cancer survivor jewelry is a meaningful way to support someone who is battling or has battled ovarian cancer, breast cancer or any other horrible disease. You can create a customized piece of cancer survivor jewelry that will help you, or someone you love, realize life is worth fighting for. Let’s unite and stamp out cancer together!