Powering Up for the Holidays

We saw the first flurries of snow this week, which means that it’s official- winter is coming. With that, the holidays are coming. A whole lot happens between Thanksgiving and New Years Day, so I like to do leg work before things kick into high gear. A little planning and a little stocking up can make for a much smoother holiday season.

Here are a couple of things I do between Halloween and Thanksgiving:

Update the Calendar- I like to update the calendar with events that I know are happening, and where that leaves us. One day I’ve learned to prioritize is wrapping day- a week day that I spend with friends, you guessed it- wrapping presents. It’s a lot more fun that wrapping things late at night by myself, and it’s a good way to make sure the shopping gets done. I also usually pencil in baking days, since it’s time consuming. I make a deadline for holiday cards, and pencil in days I think I can make it to the stores for shopping. It’s a bit intense but it helps everything go much more smoothly.


Stock Up on Essentials-Essentials for the holidays include butter, tape, candy canes and Duracell batteries.. I always underestimate how much butter holiday baking calls for, so I start buying early. Decorations, craft projects, and of course, presents, all require tape. Candy canes add a bit of holiday flair to everything from mugs of cocoa after looking at lights, to a fun gift topper. Duracell batteries are a must- they’re needed in everything from the singing snowmen, electric holiday candles,handheld games for long car rides, and about 100 other things. We trust Duracell to keep everything powered up all season long. The Fox is my official battery monitor- he reminds me which sizes are needed for what on a regular basis.

The fox is very aware of how to keep the controllers powered up.
The fox is very aware of how to keep the controllers powered up.


“Mom? The _________ is dead. It takes AAA batteries. Do we have those?”

“Oh the new air matress takes batteries? What kind?”

“Mom, did you remember to by the C batteries?”

This kid seems to know that having batteries on hand doesn’t help if they’re the wrong size. By far, we use more AA batteries than any other kind, so I always keep those stocked.He’s probably the most interested in batteries because many of his favorite things require them. Thankfully, his memory is like a steel trap, and whenever we’re shopping, he lets me know what batteries we need.

Rest Up for the Most Wonderful Time of the Year- I know we’ll be on people, places, and things overload as soon Thanksgiving weekend starts. I wouldn’t have it any other way. But it’s more fun if we’re all well rested. So we tend to hang low in November- lots of movie nights in and afternoons spent around the house. This way, when the fun starts, we’re ready for it mentally and physically! As soon as Duracell invents a mom-energy boosting battery, I’ll be all over it!


Thanks to Duracell and SheSpeaks for sponsoring today’s post.

Waking Up the Right Way with Honey Nut Cheerios and Usher

Honey Nut Cheerios and Usher have teamed up to improve your morning- check out how and score a sweet coupon!

Cold mornings are no fun, and this week we’re hovering around single digits. Dragging the kiddos out of bed is no fun, but our 6:30 wake up call is must. I’ve learned that having something they love for breakfast can really help motivate them right out of bed- days when we haven’t run out of orange juice tend to go better than days when it’s gone.

The Fox woke up today asking for Honey Nut Cheerios and ate two bowls. As he was studying the cereal box (I love love love that he’s a box reader) he asked, “Mom? Does this say ‘grain’?”  And we had a little conversation about the importance of Whole Grain. which was kind of cool.

The girl is not so much a box reader- she does well to be awake enough to get out the door. I’ve learned with her that it’s not so much the food (although she has her favorites)- it’s the atmosphere. A little music gets her moving and awake. She loved listening to “Clueless”- particularly the ending. It’s now part of our morning playlist.


Right now, there’s a  box of Honey Nut Cheerios at Walmart (a coupon’s available too) that covers both my kids- delicious whole grain goodness, and a free download of the new Usher song. Inside the box there’s a code for a free download of his new single “Clueless”. These specially marked boxes are available exclusively Walmart now through December 31, 2014.

Happy kids, out the door on time= Happy mama!

Thanks to Honey Nut Cheerios (and their whole grain goodness) for sponsoring todays discussion.

Happy 40th Birthday, Ronald McDonald House Charities

bridge_socks_heartCool socks, huh?

Well these socks are bringing awareness to the Ronald McDonald House Charities 40th Anniversary Celebration. Instead of asking for gifts, however, RMHC is in gifting mode. As a matter of fact, they’ve even made a website specifically for this- www.40yearsofgiving.org. To celebrate 40 years, RMHC will be awarding 40 local Indiana charities grants of up to $4000. The right organization will be in the business of helping children, and be located in one of the eligible counties (see website). Have the most perfect, deserving organization in mind? Go nominate them today!

Here in Indianapolis, anyone who’s ever been to Riley Hospital for Children has seen first hand the good work that RMHC does everyday. We’ve spent some time at Riley, and I have to say, their impact is immense.

Picture this: A mom and her younger child are waiting in the surgical waiting room in the wee hours of the morning. Her parents join them after the sun is up, and ask her how her trip in was. She tells them it was fine- they left at 4:30am to make to check in at 6:30am. Over the course of the time we were in the waiting room together, I leaned a lot about this family.

The daughter was having a complicated, 6 hour surgery

The in-hospital recovery was expected to be at least four weeks.

The family lived an hour and a half away from the hospital.

The mom had two weeks of vacation time left.

She was waiting for a call from the Ronald McDonald House. If she could get a room there, then she’d be able to stay close to her daughter.

It put any and all trials we were facing in perspective. While we were there, she got the call. She and her son got a room, and a home base for her daughter’s recovery.

Ever since that day, I’ve always tossed my change in the donation box at McDonald’s.