Merry Christmas – From Our House to Yours!

To all of you who have been our friends, family, colleagues, mentors, and our biggest supporters this past year…you have enhanced our lives and we love you for it. Merry Christmas (or if you celebrate something else…HAPPY THAT)! We wish you nothing but the best in the coming year. May all of your wishes and dreams come true this holiday season!

Need Last Minute Christmas Present Ideas and DIY Bows? I Can Help!

 Just for the record, I  am a member of the Collective Bias® Social Fabric® Community. This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias and their client. As always, all opinions, ideas, and photos are entirely my own.

So MOST of your Christmas shopping is done. You had all of the best gift ideas on the planet and you pulled everything off flawlessly. But then…wait! You made your list, and you’re checking it twice, and realize that you missed some of the very important people in your life. Now what?


I feel your pain. I was right there with you, but I figured out a plan and I owned it! You see, I have 6 kids. Some are easy to buy for, some not so much. The babies? Easy peasy. They are 5 and 7. They want toys. I’ve got that covered and Walmart has everything I need. The man child, now 16, wants tools. That’s pretty easy too. ‘Hey B, the man child wants tools. Look at this, pick some out’, and POOF, I click a button and all of his holiday wishes come true. 

BUT…then there are the other 3. OY…the other 3. Bry is 24 and has expensive taste. Paetyn is 19 and just had a baby. The Drama Queen is 12 going on 30 and there’s no pleasing her. But what do these hard to buy for girls all have in common? They’re girly-girls. And what do girly-girls like? Shiny things, clothes, and things that smell super pretty. With 6 kids, you live on a budget so I headed to Walmart to see what I could find.
I found the perfume in the cosmetics aisles, but I wanted something more. Luckily, they had gift sets with celebrity flair and amazing scents by the check out that I was sure all of my girls would love. You can check out the full line at www.scentsavings.net. And with this gift set purchase, your recipient also receives a free ringtone (details inside the box) which is awesome because in this case, that’s one less Taylor Swift ringtone mommy has to pay for this year!
I picked out this Taylor Swift Wonderstruck Enchanted gift set and knew it would be perfect for one of the girls (shhh…I can’t tell you which one or it wouldn’t be a surprise). And since this one girl seems a little harder to please than the others (we all have them, right?), I decided to dress up the package with a little homemade, personal flair. That’s right y’all, I made my own bows! And if I can do it, you can do it too. Here’s how:
Buy some wire ribbon, don’t be stupid and get the non-wired kind (don’t ask me how I know that, just trust me). Fold it in equal lengths, in one strip, 5 to 10 times, depending on how big you want your bow to be. 
Fold the ribbon in half and tie the middle with a twist tie. I happened to have fancy red ones at home, but the garden variety trash bag ones will work just as well. 
Start spreading the loops until they make the bow you desire. For me, this takes forever and it never is quite as perfect as I’d hoped!
When you’re through with your ribbon, find something around the house to embellish it with to hide the imperfect center. OK, so yours might not be imperfect but mine always is and a flower or additional ribbon covers that up. I sprinkled mine with glitter because we all know everything looks better with glitter!

Wrap the perfume gift set, place the ribbon on the top, and give it to that hard to gift person, or place it in the mail if you’re like me and won’t see them until after Christmas. They’ll smile and you know that you just saved time, and saved money, with a gift of scent that they’ll enjoy for months to come. 


There’s another one off the list. Now I only have the in-laws left to buy for. Any ideas there because I’m struggling?

To view more gift-giving ideas for the Millennial or hard-to-buy-for person in your life, and to get some amazing wrapping ideas, be sure to check out the Scent Savings Pinterest Board.

And if you are STILL looking for great ideas for holiday gift giving, check out the Live SoFab Holiday Digital Magazine by clicking on the image below. I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season and that you get everything your heart desires in the coming year!

Make Someone Smile with Baking Ideas Inspired by M&M’s

 I am a member of the Collective Bias® Social Fabric® Community. This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias and its client. As always, all opinions, ideas, and photos are entirely my own. #BakingIdeas #shop #cbias
I don’t bake. Well, I didn’t until recently. You see, everything I make from scratch when it comes to baking fails. I can cook just about any gourmet dish with ease. I can grill. I make all of my sauces from scratch. But I just can’t bake! It’s a shame because baked goods always put smiles on the faces of my family and I’d like to think I’m the kind of person that could put a smile on the faces of others with tasty homemade treats. So lately, I’ve been experimenting and I’ve found what works for me. When it comes to baking, I’m a semi-homemade chef. As in, boxed cake and cookie mixes are pretty much a fabulous invention that even I can’t mess up, PLUS I can dress them up with my babies’ favorite candy ever, M&M’s, to give them that homemade flair.
These cookie “recipes” would be perfect for your next office party, classroom parties, or to gift to family, friends, or any of the friendly service workers in your life. AND they won’t take you a million hours to bake but they still have that homemade taste and look about them. I bought chocolate cookies in a box, peppermint frosting, Plain Milk Chocolate M&M’s of course, eggs, no-salt butter, and my first ever cookie pan. Like the real deal cookie pan. No more cookies baked on tinfoil. It’s time to get serious about this.
Simply bake the cookies according to the package directions and then get ready to get creative. I promise, no cookies were burned (nor harmed in any way) during Operation OH-NO Christy’s trying to bake again. And they turned out great!
I decided to make a variety of cookies in an effort to please everyone because that’s what I do. I started with M&M Sandwich Cookies and iced cookies.
For the sandwich cookies, I just took 2 equal sized cookies, frosted the flat side of each one, then put them together and garnished with M&M’s all the way around. For the iced cookies, I spread frosting all over the top, sprinkled some peppermint for a festive flair and then topped them with M&M’s. Are you seeing a trend here?
Bubby tested one of the sandwich cookies for me and I think he might have heard the angels sing. He declared this the “best cookie EVER”. This pleased me since I will be gifting most of the cookies we made.
Next up…M&M Whoopie Pies. That’s right, everyone’s favorite. I baked half of these cookies with M&M’s placed on top then simply iced the flat end of the non-candied cookie and sandwiched them together for the perfect whoopie pie. Easy, delicious, and fun!
By the time I was done, I had plenty of varieties of cookies ready for sharing. There were of course the sandwich cookies, iced cookies, and whoopie pies. But there were Chocolate M&M Cookies, dipped cookies, and glazed cookies as well. This glazing thing was a new concept to me and I think I dig it. Simply put the frosting (directly in the container it comes in) and melt it in the microwave for about 20 seconds. It comes out very smooth and creamy. You can either dunk one side of the cookie in and garnish with your favorite toppings, or you can dip the top half of your cookie in there and do the same. The “dunk” looks like it has been dipped in milk and covered with goodness and would be a great idea to leave out for Santa this year. The glazed reminds me of a gingerbread cookie.
The key ingredient to all of our cookies was M&M’s. This is what gave it that personal touch and these are what makes these cookies taste so amazing. Bubby said so! You can find all of the M&M varieties in the candy aisle at your local Walmart. Bubby’s favorite are the Plain Milk Chocolate M&M’s and Bug loves the Peanut M&M’s best.
And in the spirit of the holidays, I made about 3 dozen cookies. Why? My family can’t eat 3 dozen cookies (OK, they can, but I won’t let them) so I packaged some up for shipping to a friend, I’m sending some to work with B, and I’ve got a Fed X package on the way so I plan on making my Fed X delivery person smile with a sweet treat of appreciation. It’s all about giving. Not just during the holidays either. Make someone smile today with the gift of #BakingIdeas inspired by M&M’s. And shhhh…don’t tell anyone my secret. Semi-homemade actually is homemade technically. I mean, I did make them at home, right?
For more baking with M&M’s inspiration, be sure to check out the Baking with M&M’s Pinterest Board. You better get your bib on though, because you’re going to be drooling!