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Posts Tagged: "family"

Gift of Warmth | Towel Warmer

The gift of warmth comes in all kinds of presents. Coats, hats, scarves, gloves, boots, insulated underwear, wool socks, electric blankets and on and on.

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Gift of Warmth a towel warmer.

How about a unique kind of warmth? A towel warmer.

I instantly thought of my niece when I saw the towel warmer from Brookstone. She is 23 years old and is 100% disabled. Whitney is unable to walk without the help of her mother, Nancy. My niece is also legally blind, has diminished hearing, and communicates only through her actions and touch.

Nancy has taught me that instead of focusing on what she cannot do to find things that she can enjoy.

She definitely possesses her sense of touch and what better way when you get out of the shower but to have a warm towel wrapped around you. Ahhhh… the immediate gift of warmth! Continue Reading

Christmas Gift Giving Passing Game

- - Christmas, Experiences, Kids

I have four nieces and I almost always give them some sort of experience as part of their Christmas present. So I thought it would be fun to have them play a Christmas gift giving game.

I bought four presents that cost about the same price and that all of them would like no matter which one they received. I wrapped them up but didn’t put names on any of them.

Christmas gift giving game Dirty Santa White Elephant Gift Exchange

My nieces sit in a circle and prepare to pass their gifts left and right while I read them the story about the Wright family.

I gathered my nieces together, gave each one a present, and asked them to sit in a circle. I told them the rules of the game. Every time they heard the word “left” to pass their present to the left and every time they heard the words “right” or “Wright” to pass their present to the right. I told them to listen closely because the story gets awfully crazy!

Then I began to read out loud the following story. To make it even more fun, I read it quickly!

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Individual and Family Memberships | Experience Gifts

I have thoughtful last-minute gift ideas for you that will create year-round fun for the lucky gift recipient or their entire family!

science-museum-oklahoma-family-membershipWhat is it? Individual and family memberships or annual and season passes.

You can easily purchase these items online and they are easy peasy to wrap. Best of all, experience gifts make the most memorable type of gift! That’s my “experience” any way.

Envision this… children will have you to thank for their trips to the water park, families will have you to thank for their zoo outings, and couples will have you to thank for their season tickets to a performing arts theater.

If your gift is loved, it can become your annual Christmas gift tradition!

For a “thoughtful twist,” pair the membership or pass with a small related gift item, such as a stuffed lion with a zoo membership or a pair of ski goggles with a season pass to a ski resort.

Here are some ideas for types of membership and passes that make wonderful Christmas gifts.

INDIVIDUAL & FAMILY MEMBERSHIPS

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Make Gift Shopping Simple With Free Gift Giving Apps

- - Catch All

People love it when you give them EXACTLY what they want. You’re being thoughtful.

giftsterThe gift item they wish for could be a specific brand, model, color or size and if you give them something different, they might be disappointed.

But how are you supposed to know EXACTLY what your friend or family member wants? You’re not a mind reader after all.

The answer? There’s an app for that.

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Breaking the Turkey Wishbones | Thanksgiving Tradition

- - $20 or Less, Experiences

If I close my eyes, I can still remember Grandma’s house and the delicious aroma of Thanksgiving dinner filtering from her tiny kitchen. Like so many other families, every year there was discussion of who would be the lucky two people to break the turkey wishbone.

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Queen Darlene & Jody making a wish!

It was a big event at the end of the meal to watch who would win the biggest part of the bone and declare a wish!

I had no idea of why we did this ritual of breaking the wishbone, so for this post I researched it. Did you know that the Thanksgiving tradition of breaking a wishbone dates back over 2,400 years?

The Etruscan people believed that fowl could predict the future and the chicken’s collarbone was thought to be sacred. Seriously?!?! Wishes were made by rubbing on the bones in hopes of bringing good luck. (Maybe I should try this on my next lotto ticket purchase). Thus, the “wishbone tradition” began. Continue Reading

Passing on Important Life Lessons & Values

- - $20 or Less, Catch All, Family, Kids

Return with Honor – The Purpose of Life – To Make a Difference!

A powerful quote to live by and an important life lesson to teach children and grandchildren.

The Lillard boys – Joe, Sam and Luke are amazing kids! They are five, seven and 11 years old. Their grandfather, Dick, is the Chairman of where I work. Not only is he my boss, he and his family have become my precious friends.

Return-with-Honor-Plaque-gift-idea-sunburst-giftsThis year was the first time all three boys traveled on a business trip together with grandparents and parents to Washington, D.C. to meet with Oklahoma’s congressional delegation.

We scheduled all day meetings and the boys were troopers going from building to building, meeting to meeting and sometimes waiting long periods of time. They were respectful when they met with congressional staff and the congressmen were extremely impressed! They looked so handsome in their suits!

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Birthday Card Blitz | 80 Cards for 80 Years

- - Anniversary, Birthday

My mother was turning 80 years old. After 80 birthdays, how could we make this a unique birthday for her?

80-cards-for-80th-birthday-gift-idea-sunburst-giftsI came up with the idea of family and friends sending her birthday cards. That’s nothing new, but for that thoughtful twist the goal was for her to receive 80 cards by her 80th birthday! My brother and I called family and friends to put the birthday card blitz in action.

If you have been following my blog, you know my mother was deaf and I’m all about giving her gifts that are visual experiences. Like the year I popped out of a box.

On another birthday, I treated her and several of her deaf friends to a local diner that cooked fried chicken, mashed potatoes and green beans just like her mother, my Grandma, used to cook. Afterwards, I took them all to the Science Museum Oklahoma for fun hands-on-experiences. Mom and her friends loved her birthday party!

Mom knew my boss and several of my co-workers so I purchased birthday cards ready with stamps so all they had to do was to address the envelope, sign the card, and mail it. I asked my co-workers, who my mother didn’t know, to wish Mom a Happy 80th Birthday anyway. So that there was a connection, I requested they write in the card they worked with me and something nice about me – anything that would thrill a mother to read about her daughter.

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“I Love You” Jar Filled With Handwritten Notes

During a family reunion this summer, my family wanted to let my Grandma Anna Marie (our amazing matriarch) know just how much we love her and to thank her for bringing the whole family together. I came up with the idea to surprise her with an “I Love You” Jar.

jar and notes written on leaf-shaped paper

Fill any container with handwritten notes to create a sweet and sentimental “I Love You” jar gift.

I bought a beautiful glass jar (this one happened to be made of mercury glass) and some die-cut paper in the shape of leaves. The leaves represent our family tree.

During the family reunion when my Grandma was out of earshot, I asked everyone – even the little kids – to write Grandma Anna Marie handwritten notes on the leaves that said something along the lines of:

  • I love you because…
  • I remember when…
  • Because of you…
  • Thank you for…

That was just to get them started because really they could write anything that conveyed “I Love You.”

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Like Father Like Son | Rain Gauge for Birthday Gift

Why would anyone want a rain gauge? You can Google the rain fall in your area to find out. Do you want to know the answer? It’s because we become our parents.

My husband, Randy, is just like his dad. He talks, walks, thinks and laughs just like him. So it is no wonder he likes the same things as his dad. I just didn’t see it coming!

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Click to enlarge

When we first started dating, Randy’s great sense of humor attracted me! His mother is funny too so I thought he got his sense of humor from her but through the years I saw glimpses of my father-in-law’s humor. Looks like Randy got it from both of his parents!

Randy’s dad was a “thinker.” He would mull around on a problem for as long as it takes and when he figured it out in his mind, he would fix the problem. Once! That’s it – no do overs.

When we were younger, it would drive the entire family crazy because some of his projects took so long to complete but in the end it was done perfectly. These are the things I see in Randy. He’s a thinker too.

Randy’s dad became our family’s weatherman since he followed the weather and would tell us how much it had rained by using his E-Z Read Jumbo Rain-Gauge
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Gather the Family to Celebrate in a Limousine!

Besides being fancy and having seats that face each other, do you know what else is awesome about a limousine? It holds a LOT of people!

large family riding inside limousine

The adults will have just as much fun as the kids riding around town in a limo!

My co-worker Sandra took advantage of all that space and coordinated an eight-hour limousine excursion for her parents, her brother, her other brother and his wife and their two sons, and her own husband, son, and herself. That’s a total of 10 people!

They had a lot of reasons to celebrate – Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, her father turning 75 years old, and her parents’ 50th wedding anniversary!

One by one the limousine picked them up at their houses and drove them to Bricktown in Oklahoma City. Sandra’s parents hadn’t been there in years, not since it’s revitalization into a popular dining and entertainment district.

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