A WhistleBlowers Christmas

NancyShell   I decided to decorate my house for the holidays this year with a brand new theme So I went to the store. I searched through a myriad of: festive red and green garland and bows, sugar plum fairies, santas, angels, stars and lights. The decorations  all  looked inviting and  I wanted to a tuck some of those items in my shopping cart but they weren't the only Christmas decorations ' I was really looking for....more


If I had money I would give whistles to the survivors and whistle blowers of ...more

Holiday Shopping Without Breaking the Budget

The time between Thanksgiving and New Year's has turned into America's busiest shopping season. Every time I set out the door, turn on the TV, or surf the Web, I see signs that yell "Best Deal of the Year!" or "70% off!" or "Buy 1 Get 1 Free!" These deals, combined with the gift-giving nature of the season (the thinking might go: as long as you are buying gifts for everyone else, why not add yourself to the list?), is enough to make even the most disciplined budget-follower lose her grip on the wallet. ...more

The hardest thing for me is to avoid the sale because it's on sale. As an example, the LEGO ...more

Perfect Moment Monday: On Track for the Holidays

My Perfect Moment for this week involved taking my son on the Oregon Holiday Express train. He was over the moon with excitement as we were walking up to the steam train.</p>A good friend of mine organized a group of us to go, and it was one of the best mornings this year—at least, that is what my son would say if you asked. We know he likes Thomas the Train and enjoys playing with his train set, but we definitely knew Saturday morning just how much he liked trains....more

Wired Holiday Decor

We found this artisan design company, Village Designs, at a trade show earlier this year. We’ve been waiting for the appropriate season to roll in again to mention their unique take on holiday decorations....more

Holiday Cookies UNLEASHED!

Molasses-Spice Marshmallow Cookies, a.k.a. "Kona" Cookies. ...more

Clutter-less Gift Giving

Let's face it, December is an expensive time of year! This is my first Christmas season as a single mom so needless to say, I've been thinking about the cost of gift giving a bit more this year. I've actually even been considering craft-type gifts for those on my list and trust me, I'm not a craft person. With a little bit of thought, I'm going to try to keep my spending and clutter-giving Christmas to a minimum this year....more

I like the idea of delaying an expense this way but in general I feel a majority of people have ...more

What I learned folding 250 bags

A fat lot of good it did me to get English and journalism degrees. I majored in words but somehow never learned the difference between luminaria and luminary....more

It took a much longer time than I imagined and was actually quite painful -- carpal tunnel anyone?more

Motherly Advice

No Santa Claus! Thank God! He lives, and he lives forever....more

Black Friday Temptations: U.S. Toy Safety Standards

Late Night Foray Laugh if you will (and I can almost guarantee you will by the end of this story), but I decided to brave the cold and go out to Toys R Us when it opened at 10 p.m. on Thanksgiving night....more

A new trend - The Ugly Sweater Party

Here's a new holiday trend I heard about several years ago that is gaining popularity around the country. The ugly sweater party. Invitations are sent and you are to wear the ugliest sweater, Christmas sweater or sweatshirt you can find.  I  found one website devoted entirely to one party held in 2008. And continuing on your web search you can find how to throw a ugly sweater party, how to buy ugly sweaters online, and tips on where to find ugly sweaters. You can orchestrate your party any way you want like awarding prizes to different categories of gawdy....more