A Modern Day Fairy Tale

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Swim Like a Mermaid with Sun Tail Mermaid #HolidayGiftGuide2017

**Product received for consideration. All thoughts are 100% my own. 

Do you have a little girl that dreams of being a mermaid? Or perhaps its yourself who is a little mermaid crazed?

Chances are, if its not us or our daughters, most of us probably have at least the one person in our lives that is absolutely, positively mermaid obsessed. Let's be honest, how could you not fall in love with them though? They're beautiful, they're magical...and they're fun! It truly is no wonder that so many girls young and old have found themselves dreaming of swimming as a mermaid.

This Christmas I am excited to share with you a gift that can actually make that dream come true, Sun Tail Mermaid Tails:



Sun Tail Mermaid has created the world's best swimmable mermaid tails and mermaid flippers. Their mermaid tails are soft, comfortable, and come in a wide variety of designs and colors. They are made of high quality swimsuit fabric with 4-way stretch.

Sun Tail Mermaid's monofins are extremely comfortable and virtually unbreakable. Their patented monofin is several steps ahead of everyone else in engineering, durability, comfort, and functionality. The propulsion and control is exceptional. The monofins come in a wide range of beautiful colors, so you can match your mermaid tails or look amazing wearing it alone.



That's right, your little ones can actually SWIM like a mermaid! How fun is that? Now, my daughter has had her share of mermaid fins, but in the style of blankets and costumes. Those of course are fun, but still... not quite a true mermaid experience. Every time we grab on of these out, my daughter starts asking, can I take it in the water? With Sun Tail Mermaid tails, I can finally say YES!



These truly look just as I would envision a mermaid's tail to look--- beautiful and even magical. They have many colors to choose from, from solid colors to mixed. Personally, I couldn't help but fall in love with the Aurora Borealis Mermaid Tail. How absolutely gorgeous!? But they're not just gorgeous, they are great quality--- very well made and sure to last through many, many summers to come. We cannot wait to use them when the time comes!



Now, the mermaid tales and monofin sets are designed for the experienced swimmer, but they also offer toddler tails for the younger and smaller girls, and even shark fins too! No matter your preference, you can receive a 10% discount on your order at www.SunTailMermaid.com by using coupon code: BestGiftEver

You can learn more and connect at the links below:


https://www.suntailmermaid.com/
https://www.facebook.com/suntailmermaid

Saturday, November 18, 2017

The Perfect Gift For the Man In Your Life: JORD Watches {+ a $100 JORD Giveaway} #HolidayGiftGuide2017

**Product received for consideration. All thoughts are 100% my own.

I don't know about you, but for me, the hardest person on my list to shop for is ALWAYS my husband. To be honest, I find men in general to be harder to shop for. Women are easy--- candles, jewelry, a great scarf... and done. Men? Not so much!

Each year I find myself stressing over finding the perfect gift. Do you feel the same?

Today, I am excited to share an excellent gift perfect for the hard to buy for man on YOUR list, JORD Watches.

What are JORD watches?



Hand-crafted wood timepieces. Raw material, refined design JORD is run by artists, designers, marketers, and minders. We spend our days creating, considering, arguing, and hopefully agreeing. Then we'll scrap it all for the joy of starting new. We have fun. This is our journey. We are focused on creating timepieces that are modeled after a modern lifestyle. We value sustainability, efficiency, and experiential living. We make our watches for people who don't just have somewhere to be, they have somewhere to go. The value of a watch is not in being able to tell how much time has passed, but in being aware of the need to make that time count. Moments are bigger than minutes and your watch should tell more than time.

There's just something timeless about the gift of a watch... no pun intended! Seriously though, a man's watch can become somewhat of an heirloom piece. From our very first Christmas together, 11 years ago, I knew that one day I wanted to get my husband a watch that he could keep for years to come. Still, I never could find just the right one. I wanted something that suited my husband--- modern but classic, unique but timeless.

That is exactly what I found in JORD. The actual styles of the watches are quite timeless, they offer a variety of faces to best go with the look that fits your man's tastes. But what sets them apart if the unique wooden handcrafting. That unique takes brings them much more current and offers a great look too. With various wood finishes you can again choose just the right look. Aside from the style though, the quality is great. This is a watch that is made to last. It also comes packaged beautifully, ready to give!



If you're looking for a great gift that will last for years, JORD Watches has you covered. But they don't just offer men's watches, ladies can find great watches for themselves too.

And my readers get to save 25% off with the exclusive code 'amoderndayfairytale'.

And one VERY lucky reader is going to win a $100 credit to JORD Watches! Visit this link to enter to win!

Register to Win $100 Store Credit at JORD Watches - Hand-crafted wood timepieces

Ladies Wood Watch
Wood Watches by JORD

Friday, November 17, 2017

A Frugal Homemade Christmas Tree: DIY Popcorn Garland

Every year in about August or September, I start thinking ahead to Christmas. Yes, I'm that person. But here's the thing... I love Christmas! I love the celebrations, I love the meaning behind the season, and I love decorating.

When it comes to decorating- particularly the tree- I like to keep things interesting. Each year I try to come up with a new theme or color scheme so that it never looks quite the same. You might recall last year my tree theme was 'Shine Your Light' with silver and gold. In years past, I'd had red and aqua, a Frozen inspired tree, and even just a simple classic Christmas with red and green and lots of sparkles. I love coming up with these new ideas. I love mixing and matching what I have and buying just a few extras each year to complete the desired look.

But this year my Christmas budget was even tighter than usual. I did not have any extra money at all to put towards decorations, so I had to get a little more creative. I decided to go with a very traditional homemade look.... all in all, I spend between $5-10 on my entire tree! Throughout the next few weeks, I will be sharing what I did so that you too can experience a good ol' fashioned frugal Christmas tree. First up, the inspiration for it all--- popcorn garland!

Popcorn garland is such a traditional Christmas look, but shockingly something that I had never done. While I did not start out with the intention of this homemade tree look, I DID know that I wanted popcorn one way or another, and I am SO thrilled with how it turned out! Check it out:



DIY Popcorn Garland

  • popcorn
  • thread
  • needle
  • clear spray (optional)
  1. First and foremost, you'll want to pop your popcorn. They say one cup covers about 3-4 feet of string. To be honest, I just eyeballed it though and ended up with entirely too much, but you do want to have a little extra anyway to make up for any broken pieces, etc.
    I highly recommend using just simple stove top popcorn. This takes a little longer, but you're going to get a lot more for the money. At our local store we can get a bag for about $2, and we used less than half a bag for the garland. In a pinch though, you can use microwave, just look for the non-salted, non-buttered variety. 
  2. Once it's popped, let it sit for a few days. Everything I read said about 2 days or so, I waited about 4. This allows the popcorn to stale a bit, and makes it less likely to break as you're stringing it. 
  3. After it has sat out, it's time to get started, but first you'll need to choose your thread. Some use embroidery floss or even fishing line, but I used a classic thread--- easy to find and very inexpensive- you might even have it on hand already. You can also mix it up with a colored thread too, keep it festive in case any gaps show through.
  4. Thread your needles just as you would for any sewing project, tying a knot at the end. It is much easier to work with shorter strands, so I suggest keeping them manageable, and leaving enough of a tail at the end that they can be easily tied together. 
  5. Start stringing! Pick the best pieces from your popped popcorn. Some suggest sorting before you start, but I found it easier and faster to do so as I went. You'll want to look for nice thick pieces that you can string easily. Push the needle through the thickest part of the popcorn, avoiding any kernels that are tough to break though. Be sure to keep your thread nice and even as you go. Once you get to the end of that strand, knot it and move on to the next.
  6. At the end, tie them together to make one or several longer strands.
  7. If desired, spray your finished garland with a clear spray carefully to help protect it. This *may* help your garland to last through another year, or even give it a nice little shine. Personally, I decided to keep mine as it was, and will be feeding it to the birds after the holidays. 
  8. Finally, add it to the tree! You'll want it on after the lights, but before any decorations. 
That's it. It takes a little bit of time, but is really very easy and VERY inexpensive. Overall, it should cost around $4 or so--- assuming you don't already have the needle and thread on hand. Not only does it look great, but I really love the tradition of this. My daughter is a little too young to string, but she helped hand us the popcorn while my son and I sat, watching Christmas movies and stringing popcorn. It's such a great family activity that we all really enjoyed! While it may not always go on my tree, I think this will become a regular in our family Christmases from now on.




The popcorn garland was my inspiration, but the homemade frugal Christmas doesn't end here! Stay tuned for more great ideas including: cinnamon dough ornaments, cardboard/wrapping paper ornaments and prepping pinecones for Christmas decor.

Have you tried a popcorn garland before? How did it turn out? What other frugal tree ideas do YOU have? 

Gift Ideas for the Tween on Your List {+ a Deal from SmitCo LLC} #HolidayGiftGuide2017

**Product received for consideration. All thoughts are 100% my own.

Have you started your Christmas shopping yet?

Personally, I'm an early shopper, so I'm just about finished, but there are a few people on my list I still need to figure out just the right gift for.... like the tween girls.

Shopping for tweens can be a little interesting. Oftentimes, they are just a little too old for most toys, but still like fun things, not just gift cards and electronics or even clothes as many teenagers do. So, what are some fun gift ideas for the tweens on YOUR list? Here are a few quick ideas:

  • Jewelry. Girls of all ages can enjoy jewelry. Keep it young and fun, age appropriate. 
  • Makeup/Nailcare Sets. Always check with parents for kiddos that are not your own of course, but I know at this age anything beauty related was always a hit. The same goes for my nieces as well. 
  • Favorite Books. If the girl on your list is a reader, pick a favorite book series for her to enjoy. 
  • Room Decor. I loved decorating and redecorating when I was younger... think fun pillows or throws, cute mirrors, etc. 
  • Journals. Maybe it's the writer in me, but I always loved getting journals as a kid. These days, you can find them in just about any style to match her tastes.


Today, I want to share with you a fantastic company that can help you check the tween girl on YOUR list: Smitco LLC. In the past, I've had the chance to try out some of their nail polish sets that were and still are a favorite in my house... but this year, it's all about their journals.

Now, let's be honest... you can get journals just about anywhere so why choose SmitCo? What makes them special?


First and foremost, the styles are just adorable! From emojis and unicorns to hearts and stars, there are designs to match each personality. They also have options. Want something that locks to keep others out? They have those! Want more of a journal with no lock? Yes, those too. I was sent one of their fun journals to check out for myself. Take a look:



WHILE OTHER GIRL DIARIES ARE SMALL AND THIN, this journal is 8.5 x 5.5 x 1 inch with 80 lined pages, a fancy bookmark and A COVER THAT LIGHTS UP! Most young girls and/or teens have secrets and this hardcover diary will keep it safe because of the invisible ink pen and black light. Nobody will be able to see what she wrote unless they have a black light! PLEASE NOTE that there are 3 alkaline batteries in the pen and 1 lithium metal battery in the light up book

Not only is this style super fun--- I don't know a girl of any age under 12 that isn't crazy about emojis--- to include my 4 year old, but the invisible ink? Genius! I loved that type of stuff as a kid! It's as fun as a toy, but a little more grown up so they can have that sense of--- well, being grown up! And most importantly, they can keep all their secret thoughts a secret! How fun!

Want to check them out for yourself? You can see more great gifts from SmitCo and get 20% Off you purchase too! Go to: http://amzn.to/2a3d3v8 and use coupon code N3CQD6AE on checkout

Thursday, November 16, 2017

For The Little Ones: A $450+ Holiday Giveaway #HolidayGiftGuide2017






Little Ones Image HERE The holiday season is such a wonderful time, especially when you have a little one in the house! We've teamed up with some of our favorite parenting blogs to bring you a HUGE giveaway with products to delight your baby or toddler this holiday season. Check out the great brands that are participating and the items one lucky winner will receive:

 

stuckonyou pajamas - Australia based Stuck On You was founded in 1995 by Carrie Felton, a mom of three boys. A global leader in personalized products for baby & beyond, Stuck On You products are available in more than 15 countries. Felton created Stuck On You to celebrate the individuality of every name, bring joy to new parents with unique, timeless products for every child, save families time, energy and money and help them to lead a more organized life. In addition to a broad offering of labels, the Stuck On You collection includes activity and personalized books, durable and stylish bags, lunchboxes and drink bottles, stationery, bag tags and gorgeous gifts for all ages. We think stuckonyou's Winter Pajamas are just the cutest, so our winner will receive a pair of their choice! Each set includes a long sleeve top and striped long pants. They're made with cotton elastane, with added stretch for comfort. The bottoms feature an elasticated drawstring waist. You can personalize the cozy shirt with a design, name, and font of your choice! With so many of our cute, original designs to choose from, it's easy to choose the right combination for your child. These sets retail for $39.95 each.

 

pediped footwear - Exceptional quality, unsurpassed comfort, and distinctive styling have made the award-winning company the fastest growing children's footwear brand in the United States. pediped® footwear has been awarded the American Podiatric Medical Association Seal of Acceptance for the promotion of healthy foot development, and preeminent orthopedic medical professionals, Dr. Mininder S. Kocher and Dr. Thomas W. Vorderer, deem pediped® shoes an excellent choice for parents/caregivers who want their children’s feet to develop naturally and healthily. pediped is sold in over 750 stores in the United States and 40 countries worldwide with an offering of more than 120 designs for boys and girls between its three lines, Originals®, Grip ‘n’ Go™ and Flex®. The award-winning footwear is available in EU sizes 17 to 38 (US newborn to 6 Youth). Our kids live in pediped Force Flex shoes so we want to give a pair to you! These athletic style shoes with Velcro closure are ultra light-weight and come in sizes 24-36 (US 7.5 to 4). They've got a man-made and mesh upper, breathable mesh lining, and flexible natural rubber and phylon sole. They retail for $60.



Little Partners - Founded in 1992 by a mom and Montessori-trained educator, Little Partners strives to help parents and caregivers create environments that nurture young children and provide ample opportunities for kids to learn through play and creativity. The company’s flagship product, the Original Learning Tower (which we LOVE - check out our Original Learning Tower review), was created when our founder’s daughter, Hanna, was 18 months old. Wanting to nurture Hanna's desire to "do it herself," our founder, Carol created The Learning Tower, an adjustable height kitchen platform, offering quality, safety, and flexibility. Today, Little Partners’ collection has grown to include a variety of products designed to nurture a child's blossoming independence while helping to inspire, delight, and engage children’s interest in learning as well as provide opportunities for parents and children to interact. Our winner will receive an amazing Tri-Side Learn & Play Art Center. It includes three different surfaces for ultimate creative expression, giving young artists space and versatility to color, paint, play, and experiment in whatever medium they choose. The three sides include a chalkboard, a felt board, and a magnetic dry erase board with a refillable roll for parchment paper. Each side’s height is independently adjustable, allowing multiple children to collaborate and play at the same time. Four non-spill paint containers and a large bottom shelf will help your little artist keep all of his or her supplies organized and easily accessible for when inspiration strikes. The Tri-Side Learn & Play Art Center retails for $179.99. You can find it on their website or Amazon.com.




Step2 - Step2 is the largest American manufacturer of preschool and toddler toys and the world's largest rotational molder of plastics. It’s their mission to be the leading innovator of children's products that build imaginations and enrich the family's celebration of childhood. Step2 fosters learning and development through creative play in children from toddler to school age years. We absolutely love Step2 products and are excited to give our winner the adorable and entertaining Step2 My First Christmas Tree. Amber from Viva Veltoro just posted a review of the Step2 My First Christmas Tree, so be sure to check out her post to see it in action. Children can enjoy all the magic of the Christmas experience with this pretend play Step2 Christmas Tree toy. Kiddos will light up with joy as they get to pick and choose the ornaments for their very own Christmas tree. Once all of the ornaments are in place, kiddos can reach up high and put the star on the top. With the star in place, little holiday fans can start their miniature train set and put out the cookies for Santa! Made in USA of US and imported parts.




HALO - Founded by Bill Schmid and his wife after the loss of their firstborn to SIDS, HALO has a singular mission: to help make safe sleep easier for families. For more than 20 years, HALO offers parents everything they need for safe sleep. The HALO® SleepSack® Swaddle and SleepSack Wearable Blankets grow with baby to toddlerhood, the best-selling HALO Bassinest® Swivel Sleeper provides mothers with safe and close sleep for their newborn, and the brand new HALO SnoozyPod™ helps parents seamlessly transition baby or toddlers to a new sleep environment. HALO products are used in over 1500 hospitals nationwide to help parents practice safe sleep for baby. Anything that helps baby sleep soundly in his or her crib is a welcome lifesaver for parents! The HALO SnoozyPod™ vibrating, all-in-one bedtime soother is the first device to combine soothing sounds and an amber glow night light with gentle vibration to lull infants and toddlers to their best sleep. Designed to fit most cribs, toddler and twin beds, the SnoozyPod contains calming vibration, comforting sounds, and star and moon projection night light. The star and moon projection night light uses a soft amber LED bulb that will not interrupt baby’s circadian rhythm. In addition, SnoozyPod is Bluetooth enabled, so caretakers can activate the functions from anywhere in the home, without encouraging wakefulness by entering baby's room. The soothing sounds can be played for 30-minutes, or set to play all night long to help quiet household noises that may disrupt sleep. The SnoozyPod fits snugly under the mattress leaving a safe, flat, firm surface for your child to comfortably sleep. Undoubtedly their most popular and well-known product, the Halo® SleepSack® wearable blanket replaces loose blankets in the crib that can cover your baby's face and interfere with breathing. In addition to sleeping safer, it helps babies sleep better, too. It's a warm cuddly blanket they can't kick off; ensuring baby sleeps soundly throughout the night.


The World of Eric Carle: The World of Eric Carle embodies the joys of playful learning and an appreciation of art and nature that generations have experienced through Eric Carle’s timeless stories and unique artwork. The World of Eric Carle inspires children to be creative, expressive and imaginative, encouraging them to explore and enjoy the world around them, while fostering lifetime personal values. The Ride 'n' Roll Caterpillar Ride On from The World of Eric Carle is absolutely adorable and provides endless hours of safe, ride-on fun for toddlers! The soft memory foam seat keeps your child safe and secure and the smooth wooden handle will help them to keep a firm grip. The Ride 'n' Roll Caterpillar also helps your child develop coordination, motor skills, and balance!



One person will take home all of these fabulous gifts!
Open to the continental US, ages 18 and up. Ends 11/30/17 at 11:59 PM EST.
Disclosure: Viva Veltoro, Thrifty Nifty Mommy and the participating bloggers are not responsible for prize fulfillment. Images and item descriptions are courtesy of the sponsors. One winner will be randomly selected using the Giveaway Tools random selector and notified via email. Once notified, the winner will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest or Google. Void where prohibited. Please contact thriftyniftymommy {at}yahoo.com with any questions about this giveaway.

Finding the Right Bible for Your Child {+ A Kids Bible Giveaway} #HolidayGiftGuide2017



Welcome to the In Everything Give Thanks Giveaway Hop hosted by MamaTheFox.com

From now through November 30, hop along to all participating bloggers to enter to win some great family friendly giveaways, just in time for the holidays! There is no limit to how many you can win, so hop along and enter them all.

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**Bibles received for consideration. Post contains affiliate links. All thoughts are 100% my own. 

We all know that Jesus is the Reason for the Season, and I always try to keep this in my mind as I am planning for the holidays. I try to remind me kids throughout the season, but let's be honest... sometimes the excitement of presents can get in the way for them. So, every year, I try to get them a special gift to remind them just that. Some years it might be a devotional, some days a new storybook, or even a Bible.

But, when it comes to choosing Bibles for kids, what do you look for? Today I'm sharing a few thoughts:

  • Think About Their Interests. Did you know there are Bibles for pretty much anything your child might be interested in these days? Minecraft, Legos, princesses... I've seen them ALL. If it grabs their interest, it's more likely to make them want to pick it up. 
  • Consider Their Reading Level. It's okay to get them a 'real' Bible before they are ready- either as a keepsake to save until that time or to read together, but if you want something that they can read on their own, be mindful of where they are. If they're not ready for a real Bible just yet, a storybook Bible is still a great option. 
  • Consider the Translation. Find a translation that you think they will understand and enjoy. If they participate in Sunday School, etc you might consider finding out if there is a preferred translation there. 
  • Keep It Fun AND Educational. Who says its can't be both, right? There are so many great kids Bibles out there to choose from that there truly is no reason not to find something fun and unique that fits your child's interests and curiosity. 
Today, I want to share with a few great gift options when it comes to kids' Bibles.

First up, the NKJV Color Code Bible:


Over 1600 passages are color-coded on important faith themes. The first New King James Version for Kids highlighted in full-color, this Bible will be simple for kids to read and understand. 
With topics arranged by color, you will learn about salvation and how to put God’s word into your daily faith walk. The topics/colors are:
Gold: God
Navy: Sin, evil,
Red: Jesus
Orange: washed clean from sin, new life
Green: growth in your new life as a Christian and Faith Walk
Blue: Prayer, Praise and Thanksgiving
Purple: Heaven
A vibrant 64 pages in the beginning of the Bible will explain the color system as well as offer expanded study help features especially for a child’s creative and imaginative mind!
The large, readable type, bold in-text subject headings, individual Bible book introductions, and color-highlighted verses all make this Bible a fantastic purchase for any child!
Full of bright colors, memorization aids, and the never-ending truth of God’s Good News, the Color Code Bible is an exciting new way to study God’s Word for everybody.


Now, typically the NKJV would not be my first choice for a kids' Bible as I personally find it a little mire difficult to understand, however many still prefer this more classic translation and that's okay. This is a great Bible for them... but even if it's not the prefer translation, the style of this Bible might just change your mind! I've seen it suggested before that as you read your Bible it can be very helpful to have a set of highlighters or pens in various colors and mark everything by categories. This Bible has already done the work for you! As your child reads, they will discover highlighted passages about the topics listed above. Not only does this help them to gain a better understanding of exactly what it is they are reading, for my son who is very much a visual person, it seemed to help keep him interested too... more so than just looking at a plain white page! 

But I must admit, that's not even my favorite part of this particular Bible. Before the Old Testament even begins there is a TON of information about the Bible in general. It tells you the importance of the bible, what category each book falls into (history, poetry, prophecy, Gospels, church history, letters, etc. It tells you all about who wrote the Bible. It tells you WHY you should read the Bible. And of course it gives an in depth description of each color code talked about. It even offers various reading plans that your child can stick to.

This truly is a great study Bible, packed full of useful tools to help your child fully understand the Bible. It is available to purchase now at your favorite Christian book retailers.



Next up, the NIrV Kids' Quest Study Bible:

How come people lived so long back then? Why did God allow the flood? Is Jesus real?
Kids have LOTS of questions about the Bible and God. The NIrV Kid’s Quest Study Bible is a great resource for kids eager to learn more.
Features include:
  • Over 500 real questions and answers from kids
  • “Quest Challenges” that help kids apply the Bible’s teachings to their own lives by pointing to Scripture
  • Book introductions that help explain what each book of the Bible is about
  • A dictionary and a subject guide that help kids find what they’re looking for
  • A fresh, colorful design with cartoons that makes the Bible fun to look at and use
  • The complete NIrV translation—the NIV for kids! This translation is written at a third grade reading level for children just beginning to explore the Bible on their own
Isn’t it exciting to discover the world, ask how things work, and learn about God and the Bible? With a bright, colorful design, reading and using the Bible is fun.


This is most certainly the Bible for the kid with all the questions. Let's be honest--- that's most kids, isn't it? Kids are still learning and exploring their world, and that means they want to know it all! As they read through this Bible they will find the answers to all of those questions. In fact, each book starts with a series of important questions: who wrote it? what's it about? who was it written for? and when was it written? These questions will get the reading started off on the right foot. The questions continue on as they read. Some of the questions are related exactly to what they are reading- the Bible questions. Others are more general kid questions that can be answered USING the scriptures they are reading. For instance, 'why do I have to brush my teeth?'. Not the typical Bible question, but certainly one MY kids have asked... this Bible uses scriptures to help answer those burning questions. There are also Quest Challenges throughout that both answer important questions and give a real life application to experience the answers for themselves. This certainly helps to bring the Bible more relevance to their life every day. 

If you have a curious child with lots of questions on your list, this is THE must have Bible for them. It is available to purchase at your favorite Christian book retailer.




And one very lucky reader is going to win the Color Code Bible for themselves. Enter using the giveaway form below:


MamatheFox and all participating blogs are not held responsible for sponsors who fail to fulfill their prize obligations.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Stuff Your Stocking with a Favorite Family Movies Giveaway {+ A Look at The Man Who Invented Christmas}



Welcome to the Super Stocking Stuffer Giveaway Hop hosted by The Kids Did It and Mommy Island.

From now through November 29th, hop along to all participating blogs for some great prizes that are perfect to... well, stuff your stockings! There is no limit to how many you can win, so head on over and enter them all.

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When I think about Christmas, I naturally think about traditions. Let's be honest, there is no time of the year that is full of traditions- new and old- than Christmas time. Perhaps that's why I love Christmas so much, in a world of ever-changing chaos, it is those traditions that I so look forward to year after year.

One tradition that my family loves more than anything is cuddling up on the couch to watch our favorite Christmas movies! There are many great ones out there and we tend to watch a variety each year, but there are those few that we have to watch over and over again! Today, I'm sharing my Top 7 must watch Christmas movies!

  • Home Alone. This is actually one of my son's absolutely favorite movies ever made, so admittedly sometimes we watch it throughout the rest of the year too. Such a fun movie for the whole family with those epic holiday lines we all know and love! 
  • Polar Express. This is one that I have memorized from start to finish. For about a year my son watched it every single say from one Christmas to the next. Needless to say, we went through a few copies. Still, I don't mind, this is such a sweet movie about the magic of Christmas. 
  • The Santa Clause. We're big Tim Allen fan's in this house, and no one does Santa quite like him. We love ALL three movies, but the first is most certainly our favorite. This one also brings back a lot of memories for me because it was the first movie I ever saw in theaters!
  • How the Grinch Stole Christmas. The cartoon- NOT the live action, though my kids do enjoy that one too. It's such a classic that it truly is not Christmas without it. 
  • A Charlie Brown Christmas. This is truly a staple. Charlie Brown and Christmas go together like peanut butter and jelly. Not only do we watch Charlie Brown every year, we have our very own Charlie Brown Christmas tree too. 
  • Christmas With the Cranks. I know, I know... this one is so cheesy, but again... big Tim Allen fans so we can't help but love the humor! 
  • A Christmas Carol. Now, I must admit I don't recall having ever watched the movie as a child, but reading the book was an annual tradition of mine personally. It truly is such a classic tale that full encompasses the spirit of the season... what would Christmas be without A Christmas Carol?

These are just a few of my favorites--- honestly, it took everything in me to narrow it down to merely seven. Christmas movies are filled with such magic and hope, and generally speaking tend to be movies that my entire family can enjoy without worry.

This year, I'm also very excited about an all new Christmas movie that is sure to become another classic, The Man Who Invented Christmas:



The Man Who Invented Christmas tells the magical journey that led to the creation of Ebenezer Scrooge (Christopher Plummer- Sound of Music), Tiny Tim and other classic characters from A Christmas Carol. Directed by Bharat Nalluri (Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day), the film shows how Charles Dickens (Dan Stevens- Beauty and the Beast) mixed real life inspirations with his vivid imagination to conjure up unforgettable characters and a timeless tale, forever changing the holiday season into the celebration we know today.

As I said above, A Christmas Carol has perhaps always been my absolute favorite Christmas story. Each year I looked forward to sitting down and diving into the pages that first introduced me to the likes of scrooge. Bah Humbug has become as much a recognized phrase of the holidays, just as much as the man in red himself. Whether you've seen the original movie or even the animated version from a few years back, chances are you've heard the story time and time again. How many favorite shows have had a Christmas Story inspired episode? How many film adaptations have been made? This story is such a part of our Christmas culture, I truly could not imagine life without it!  And I for one cannot wait to see the story behind the story.

Take a look at this exclusive sneak peek:



THE MAN WHO INVENTED CHRISTMAS releases in theaters on November 22.

And in celebration of the upcoming release, one lucky reader is going to win a Family Movie Favorites prize pack featuring The Sound of Music, Beauty and the Beast and A Christmas Carol. Enter using the giveaway form below: