ways to get ready for spring

7 ways to get ready for spring

It’s almost time to put another winter behind us. Every day we’re seeing a little bit more daylight, the temperatures are starting to rise, and signs of spring are starting to pop up everywhere.  There’s something about the fresh start spring brings that just makes us feel so great!

When that first perfect day hits, you’re going to want to spend time outdoors enjoying the nice weather. With a little prep, you can ensure that you’ll need less time for work and more time for fun!

banner daphne

Rotate clothing– We won’t need heavy sweaters or winter wear for much longer so start washing and storing the really wintry stuff now. At the same time, start pulling out your spring clothes so you don’t have to sift through your wardrobe to find the right outfit on that first 70-degree day. Don’t forget about your spring pajamas… lighter fabrics with floral prints are perfect for setting that spring mood.

January Seeds

Start thinking about your garden. Do you grow vegetables? Do you love having a yard full of flowers? With more people spending time at home, gardening has become a hot new hobby. This caused many greenhouses and nurseries to run out of stock early last spring and many people were unable to purchase plants. To make sure, that you have everything you want to grow this year, why not start seeds indoors? Empty cardboard eggshell cartons are a great way to keep your seeds separate and nurture them until you can plant them outside.

Skincare products

Springtime skin and hair care. Cold dry air in the winter requires a different skincare routine. We typically use heavier moisturizers, and a lot of people don’t use as much sunscreen during the winter months. As the humidity and UV levels rise, you’ll want something lighter with sunscreen. The same thing applies to your hair care routine. In the warmer months, you may not need a super-moisturizing shampoo or thick conditioner. Pick up what you’re going to need now so you’re not in the checkout line when you should be enjoying yourself.

Cleaning Blinds

Start thinking spring cleaning. De-cluttering and refreshing your home feels great! There’s nothing like opening your windows on a beautiful spring day and kicking the winter dust and stale air to the curb. Even if we’re not quite there yet, you can start the cleaning part now.  Go through closets & cupboards and start throwing things away. Pull out that furniture in low traffic rooms to vacuum and dust.  Then when that perfect window opening day comes, you can tackle the main parts of your home.

Furry Friend

Don’t forget about your Furry Friends. If you have pets, chances are they’ve got a full, thick winter coat right now. As the weather warms, they will start to lose that hair. You can be proactive now and make sure to brush and comb them regularly to start thinning that hair out, or you can wait and clean it up daily from your furniture, clothes, and floors. We recommend option A.

Pedi

Get a pedicure. It’s almost flip-flop season! Need we say more? Make sure those little piggies are ready to come out of hibernation by getting a pedicure now!

Exercise

Start exercising now. If your new year’s resolution to start exercising fell by the wayside in week 2, now’s the time for a resolution reboot. Short and tank top weather is knocking on the door and you want to look your best. Start exercising to shed that quarantine AND winter weight.

You’ll find this to be a great start. Happy spring! Bring on birds, blossoms, and tree buds.

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Declutter Closet

The Ultimate Closet Cleaning Guide

We’ve been spending a lot of time at home… a lot of time. Over the last year, you’ve likely learned a lot about the home you live in and you’ve probably done a lot of organizing as well. Cleaning out cabinets, storage closets, drawers, basements, and attics is somewhat of a national past-time these days. But… have you cleaned out your main wardrobe closet yet?

If you haven’t, you’re not alone. Did you know that the clothes closet is usually the very last place people organize when cleaning or de-cluttering their homes? Why is that? It’s because our clothes are the hardest things for us to let go of, and they hold a sentimental place in our hearts. Every shirt, dress, pair of pants, sweater, and jacket can be linked to an event in your life or memory. This year, before spring hits, vow to tackle your closet head-on. Clean it out, get rid of things, and make room for new beautiful items.

We’ve got some tips to make the process as painless as possible. So make a pot of coffee, put on your comfy pajamas, and let’s go!

Donation

Who gets what? To begin with, decide what’s going to happen with the things you’re going to get rid of. You may for instance have family or friends who need or want your hand-me-downs. There will also likely be things that you can donate to your local thrift shop, shelter, or charity. Keep them separate as you put them in bags or boxes.

Looking at clothes

Start at one side. It’s very easy to become distracted when you’re cleaning out your closet. Pick a starting point and follow the flow. Move through each section one by one. Whatever you encounter, don’t allow yourself to stray from the game plan or you’ll end up with a bigger mess than you know what to do with.

Thinking

Let go. As stated earlier, clothes have many sentimental memories and we all have those few items that we’ll keep forever, but you can’t keep everything. The rule of thumb is if you’ve gone two seasons and haven’t worn an article of clothing, chances are you will never wear it again. Get rid of it. It’s only taking up space and adding to your clutter.

Try on

Check the fit. Make sure to try things on. If you’re like many people, you’re holding on to a lot of clothes that don’t fit anymore. If something is too big, chances are you’ll never wear it again. If too small, and your plan is to lose weight so it will fit again, ask yourself if you’d actually wear it. If not, it’s much more fun to buy new clothes once you shed the weight.

jeans with pin

Look the clothes over. Many times people have clothes in the closet that have a tear, a button missing, or a broken zipper and the intention was to fix them. If you haven’t done it by now, you probably aren’t going to. Send them on to greener pastures.

80's

Think about your current style. Are you holding on to those stirrup pants from 1984 because you’re hoping they’re going to come back in style? Even if something like that were to become trendy again, chances are the look will be slightly different. Let go of the past.

Laundry

Clean everything. It’s just common courtesy to make sure that whatever you’re giving to someone or donating to charity is clean and smells fresh.

Cleaning Car

Recycle. Most people have t-shirts, sweatshirts, or other items that are too worn to donate or give away, but you don’t want them either. Don’t just throw them away immediately. Reuse them by turning them into rags for cleaning (old sweatshirts are great for cleaning your car) and once they have served their purpose, then you can toss them.

Car Boxes

Out of sight.  Once you are done, get those bags and boxes out of your house. We cannot stress this enough. Load them in the car and drive them to their new homes. If you keep them you’ll start thinking “well maybe I should keep that one sweater because…” and they will without a doubt start working their way out of the bags and back into the closet. You must relocate them at once.

And that’s it. Now you have a closet with lots of room to be refilled with cute, fresh new outfits. Go shopping and have fun. May we suggest you start with pajamas?

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Big Game Tv (1)

Football Fun – Party Games for Super Duper Sunday

The big game between Kansas City and Tampa Bay will be played on February 7th. Did you know it’s the first time in history that the game is being played on the home field of one of the competing teams?

For millions of Americans, hosting a party to watch the event is a tradition. Friends and family gather to root on their favorite team, enjoy delicious food, and partake in some adult beverages. This year, consider adding some fun games and activities to elevate your celebration to the next level. We’ve got 6 ideas that will make you score big with your guests!

oops (1)

Don’t say it – At the start of your party come up with a word that no one is allowed to say during the game. For instance, you can ban the word “touchdown,” and each time a guest says it, they’ll have some kind of penalty like having to take a drink, do a somersault, or eat something not very appealing.
Puppy Bowl (1)

Watch the Puppy Bowl – Tune into Discovery+ or Animal Planet at 2pm EST and watch 70 adorable puppies play their version of the big game. It’s for a great cause – raising awareness for pet adoption. Take wagers on the winners and then donate the proceeds to your local animal shelter.

Bingo (1)

Commercial Bingo – Lots of people look forward to the commercials that air during the big game. Why not make it a fun activity to play along with? Fanduel.com has instructions and a printable bingo card you can use for inspiration. Pick up some prizes for the winners and get ready to scream ‘BINGO’!

Big Game Charades

Football Charades – Follow the usual rules of charades but only use football terms for the clues. They can be easy like field goal, cheerleader, and helmet, or you can pick tougher clues like halftime show, offsides, and mascot.

Football Shaped Food

Food Competition – Have each guest bring a dish that is football-themed then ask the guests to vote on their favorites. The winner gets a prize. This activity has an added bonus because you don’t have to do all the cooking!

Friends Football (1)

Play Football – Have a pre-game game. Split up into teams and hold your very own championship. This can be done in any climate – even in the snow. Just make sure to dress warmly. The players will get some of their energy out so they can focus on the game and they’ll be extra hungry which means fewer leftovers to clean up!

Trivia (1)

Football Trivia – Create a “test” on a sheet of paper and make copies. Pass them out to your guests as they arrive and let them fill out the answers. The person who gets the most right wins. You could have questions like player’s nicknames, famous big game commercials, bowl history, and more.  It’s fun to see what the Monday morning quarterbacks really know.

We hope you’ll try some of these ideas at your party this year. If you have other traditions or fun things you like to do at your annual celebration, we’d love to hear them! Share them with us here or over on our Facebook page.

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Better Sleep

Finding Your Way To Better Sleep

A good night’s sleep is critical to your overall health. When you get the right amount of sleep at night it makes you more productive the next day, lowers stress levels, and improves your overall frame of mind. Your sleep quality can even affect your weight and the health of your skin.

Most people who have trouble either falling asleep or staying asleep know the basics of what to do and what not to do, such as drinking herbal tea, taking a warm bath, and avoiding technology right before bed. But, there are some other methods you can also try if the old stand-by isn’t working for you. If you are one of the millions of people that have trouble getting enough zzzz’s at night, give some of these lesser know techniques a shot.

Beary Happy

Pick the Right Pajamas: Proper sleepwear is critical to a good night’s sleep and a great pair of pajamas makes all the difference. If you aren’t comfortable, you’ll toss and turn all night disturbing your regular cycle. The way your pajamas fit is very important. If pajamas are too loose you might start to feel tangled up as you move around. If too tight, your PJ’s may feel binding and can cut off circulation. Another thing to consider is the fabric your sleepwear is constructed of. You don’t want to be too hot or cold and you want the fabric to feel good on your skin. Everyone has different tastes, but it just so happens that they make pajamas out of every type of material imaginable!

Tart Cherries (1)

Drink Tart Cherry Juice: Tart cherries (Known as Montmorency cherries) are naturally rich in melatonin, which is a hormone that regulates sleep. Drinking tart cherry juice before bed gives you just the right amount of melatonin to help you fall asleep and stay asleep while supplying your body with a ton of nutrients and antioxidants. Tart cherry juice is also thought to help reduce arthritis and gout symptoms, combat muscle soreness, and improve brain health. The juice can be purchased as a concentrate that you mix with water or ready to drink.

Magneisun

Take a Magnesium Supplement: Magnesium is one of the most common minerals on earth and is found in many of the foods we eat. Our bodies depend on it to function properly. Bone health, brain, heart, and muscle function are just some of the 600 cellular reactions throughout your body that magnesium intake controls. The supplements provide benefits such as fighting inflammation, relieving constipation, and lowering blood pressure, but did you know magnesium may help treat sleep problems? Magnesium regulates neurotransmitters that send signals to the nervous system and brain helping you to relax. It also regulates the melatonin your body naturally produces, which controls your sleep-wake cycle.

Lavender flowers

Lavender Aromatherapy: Lavender is thought to have originated in the Mediterranean, Middle East, and India and has been used to improve sleep for centuries. Our brains find the scent of Lavender soothing, which in turn slows brain wave activity allowing you to relax. The scent can be used in many different ways such as diffusers in your bedroom, lotions or pure essential oils directly applied to the skin, and you can even find laundry treatments that are lavender scented. It’s a must-have fragrance to help you get great shut-eye.

Calm Ocean Sounds

Relaxation App: Many times the inability to get a good night’s sleep comes from our brains working overtime. You know how it is. You go to bed and suddenly you start thinking about the day’s events, your upcoming schedule, or the stresses that come with everyday life. It can keep you up for hours! A great way to combat this is to download a relaxation app. Soothing ocean sounds, the soft patter of raindrops, or even the whirring of a fan transform your environment into a happy place where you can clear your mind and decompress.

Meditation

Meditation: Did you know that 1-in-6 adults meditate before bed?  Taking a few minutes to clear your mind before you go to bed can do wonders for your sleep cycle. When using a variety of mind and body techniques to promote relaxation, you release tension and ready your brain for sleep. Look for some videos and articles online to give you insight into different types of mediation practices and to find the right technique for you.

Do you have a proven method of getting to sleep and staying asleep that has worked wonders for you? Our community would love to hear them. Comment below or head on over to our Facebook page and share them with us!

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NYE Cocktail

5 Tasty and festive cocktails to ring in the New Year

As we prepare to ring in a new year, many people can’t wait to say goodbye to a very strange year. Whether you will be gathering with a small group or relaxing on the couch, one thing we can all agree on is that a cocktail in hand is a very fitting way to bid adieu to the challenges we have faced this year.

We’ve got 5 must-try libations perfect for the anticipation of better things to come. We hope you join us in a toast as we kick 2020 to the curb and welcome new beginnings and a fresh start.

Poinsettia Fizz

Poinsettia Fizz

Champagne is a staple for many New Year’s celebrations but you don’t have to settle for just a glass of bubbly. This 3-ingredient cocktail gives you the wonderful fizz we like from champagne, tart flavor from cranberry juice, and a boozy sweet kick from Gran Marnier. You’ll need:

  • 1 to 2 ounces cranberry juice
  • 1 ounce Grand Marnier (or orange liqueur)
  • Champagne or Prosecco, chilled
  • Fresh cranberries

Fill a Champagne glass with 1 to 2 ounces cranberry juice and 1 ounce Grand Marnier. Top with Champagne or Prosecco and garnish with cranberries.

 

Cider Sidecar

Cider Sidecar

The ultimate winter cocktail, Cognac, Cointreau, and apple cider are a delicious combination perfect for sitting around the fireplace and watching the countdown. Top it with just a splash of Champagne for an extra fancy twist.

  • 2 oz. fresh apple cider
  • 2 oz. cognac
  • 1 oz. Cointreau
  • 1 oz. fresh lemon juice
  • A strip of lemon zest and brandied cherries, for serving

Place cider, cognac, Cointreau, and lemon juice in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake until 20 to 30 seconds until the shaker is frosty. Strain into a martini glass and top with zest and brandied cherries. Top with a splash of Champagne if desired.

Pineapple Margarita Sparklers

Pineapple Margarita Sparkler

Sweet and salty with just a little kick, this extra sparkly Margarita will transport you to a tropical island for your New Year’s countdown.

  • 1cup fresh pineapple chunks
  • 1cup fresh lime juice
  • 1/4cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1cup silver tequila
  • 1/2cup Grand Marnier (orange liqueur)
  • 1bottle (750 ml) champagne
  • fresh mint, for serving

 

In a blender, combine pineapple, lime and lemon juice, and pulse to combine. Strain into a pitcher and add the tequila and Grand Marnier. Chill until ready to serve.

Just before serving, add the champagne then rim glasses with lime and then chili salt. Pour drinks in glasses and garnish with fresh or grilled pineapple slices and mint.

 

Chipotle Chili Salt

  • 1/4cup kosher or margarita salt
  • 1teaspoon chipotle chili powder (if you can’t find it, just mix equal parts of chipotle powder and chili powder)

 

On a shallow plate, combine the salt and chili powder.

 

Classic Martini

Martini

Sometimes foregoing the fancy cocktails and sticking to a classic standard is the best way to remember simpler times. This recipe is shaken – not stirred.

  • 5 ounces vodka or gin
  • .5 ounces dry vermouth
  • Olive or lemon twist for garnish

Pour ice, vodka or gin, and vermouth into a glass shaker. Shake and pour into a martini glass. Garnish with olives or lemon twist. Like it dirty? Add olive juice to taste and garnish with stuffed olives instead of lemon.

 

Boozy Hot Chocolate Buffet with Charcuterie Board

Cocoa

If it’s your sweet tooth that needs satisfying this New Year’s Eve, we’ve got just the ticket. Many Liqueurs’ or cream-based liquors mix great with hot chocolate so there is no recipe here. It’s the dress-up part that’s where the creativity comes. A Hot Chocolate Charcuterie Board allows people to pick their own poisons. There is no right or wrong here. Have fun with it. Some ideas include:

  • A variety of alcohol choices like Baileys, Peppermint Schnapps, Frangelico, and Rum Chata (and/or whatever you like)
  • Crushed candy canes, mini marshmallows, colorful sprinkles, whipped cream, white and dark chocolate pieces, caramel sauce or caramel candies, buttermint candies crumbled cookies (such as Oreos, pirouettes, or shortbread.

Don’t forget to have a way to keep the cocoa hot!

 

From all of us at Pajama Company, Cheers to you! Happy New Year!

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Christmas Ready (1)

Are you ready for Christmas? Your last-minute holiday checklist

Christmas is just days away and as prepared as we think we are, there always to seems to be something we forget to do or get ready for. We’re here to help make sure that your holiday runs smoothly with a Christmas checklist you’ll want to refer to every year. Don’t forget to check it twice and then sit back and enjoy the magic of Christmas!

Spice Cabinet (1)

Check the fridge and pantry: There is nothing worse than getting ready to prepare an amazing holiday meal only to find out that you don’t have an ingredient on hand and the stores are closed. Write down everything you plan to make and then inventory your refrigerator and pantry. Don’t forget appetizers and beverage needs.

Gift Card (1)

Remember service folks: Show your hairstylist, trash removal workers, the kid’s teachers, and all the people who make your life easier how much you appreciate them during the holidays. A gift card is a perfect way to do this allowing them to choose what’s right for them. Your delivery drivers and postal employees work especially hard this time of year, but they may not be able to accept gifts or only those valued under a certain amount. Check with your local offices to find out what they are allowed to receive. Another great idea is to leave a basket of goodies (think pre-packaged snacks, bottled water, and juice) at your door so they can grab a snack. With all the packages they are delivering, they may not have time to stop for a meal. Your gesture will be truly appreciated.

Stocking Stuffers (1)

Pick up stocking stuffers: Many times we find ourselves in a position where we could use a quick gift or stocking stuffer. Be prepared by picking up a few extra little tidbits for these very occasions. A good rule of thumb is to get something that you yourself would use, eat, or want and is not anything that would be outdated next year. That way, if you don’t give it as a gift, you can use it for yourself or keep it for next year.

Christmas Dog (1)

Don’t forget the pets: When busy shopping and picking out the perfect gifts for the humans in our lives, we sometimes forget about the furry critters that live with us. They like Christmas too! A couple of toys or treats for our fur-babies will make them extra happy during the hustle and bustle of the season. Most times, these gifts should be kept in an out of pet-reach place until you are ready to give them their goodies. 9 out of 10 times, under the tree is not a wise choice – trust us on this. 

Christmas Call (1)

Schedule visit times: Family gatherings will be a bit different this year as large get-togethers aren’t recommended. If you have a lot of people you want to communicate with on Christmas it might be a good idea to create some kind of a schedule where can connect with them. This way you’ll be sure to share your season’s greetings with everyone you love and care about.

Wrap (1)

Wrap it up: Are all those presents you hid throughout the house wrapped? Make one last sweep of all your favorite hiding place to make sure you’ve got them all. You don’t want to remember Christmas morning that you forgot those 2 on the top shelf in the linen closet behind the towels.

Christmas to do (1)

Make your own checklist:  One of the most important things you can do is create a list of your own. Are the Christmas Morning Pajamas clean? Is your holiday music playlist ready to go? Have all the decorations been put up? There are so many things to think about. If you plan in advance and keep yourself organized you’ll be able to enjoy the very long holiday weekend with no worries!

 

Merry Christmas!

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christmas-cookies-2975570_640

Delight Your Sweet Tooth: 8 Holiday Cookie Recipes You Should Bake Right Now!

One of the best parts of the holiday season is all the wonderful sweet treats that we get to indulge in! It’s that time of the year where we fire up the ovens and start baking all kinds of delicious cookies. Holiday cookie making is a tradition that many of us do every year. They make for thoughtful gifts, beautiful platters for your holiday get-togethers, and of course tasty snacks for everyone in the household to devour. Plus, who doesn’t love to have their home filled with the smell of cookies baking?

PJs Gingerbread

There’s nothing like putting on your favorite pajamas, brewing up a hot cup of cocoa or tea, and satisfying your sweet tooth. Whether you lean more towards the traditional varieties of cookies or like to experiment with new recipes, we’ve put together some musts  you’ve got to put on your holiday baking list!

Eggnog Cookies SWP

  1. Eggnog Cookies from Spend with Pennies

A favorite holiday beverage in a chewy cookie is exactly what we crave. There’s eggnog in both the cookie and the icing! The great part about this cookie is the ability to finish them off by sprinkling a variety of different toppings over the creamy icing. You can find the recipe here at Spend with Pennies.

Raspberry Linzer

  1. Raspberry Linzer Cookies from My Recipes

What’s not to love about crispy almond cookies filled with sweet raspberry preserves? Dust with a little powdered sugar for the “snowy” vibe and you have a traditional holiday cookie that everyone will love. This recipe from My Recipes is just like grammas.

Peppermint Patty Cookies -Delish

  1. Peppermint Pattie-Stuffed Chocolate Cookies from Delish.com

This is a super easy 6 ingredient cookie that blends 2 of our favorite flavors chocolate and mint. This chewy cookie with a surprise inside is a perfect addition to your holiday cookie platter. Here’s the recipe from the folks over at Delish.com.

Pecan Crescent

  1. Pecan Crescent Butter Cookies from The Spruce Eats

No holiday is complete without these crescent moon, melt in your mouth pecan cookies. They are a very versatile treat that pair well with coffee, tea, or just by themselves. We love them as that little “something sweet” after a wonderful meal. Try this recipe with options for substitutions from The Spruce Eats.

Snowman

  1. Melted Snowman Cookies from myimperfectkitchen.com

A fun cookie to make that the kids will just love. You start with a basic sugar cookie that you can make from scratch, a mix, or refrigerated dough and decorate from there. It’s a cute alternative to the standard cut-out sugar cookie. My Imperfect Kitchen has a great recipe with step-by-step pictures to guide you through the process.

Cherry CC

  1. Maraschino Cherry Chocolate Chip Cookies from thefirstyearblog.com

If the thought of chocolate and cherries has your mouth-watering you’re not alone. These are a Pinterest favorite and the recipe from thefirstyearblog.com has amazing pictures that will have you writing ‘cherries’ on your grocery list immediately.

Pistachio

  1. Gluten-Free Pistachio Truffle Cookies from Epicurious

This sweet and salty cookie is a great way to get your sugar fix without straying from your gluten-free diet. They take a little more effort than some other recipes but the end result is a cookie you’ll want to make well beyond the holiday season. Epicurious has a detailed recipe that walks you through the process.

Gingerbread

  1. Gingerbread Men (or women, or whatever) from Taste of Home

No holiday season is complete without the traditional gingerbread cookie. Traditionally, the most popular shape is happy little guys complete with buttons and a big smile. Nowadays, any shape you desire will complete your holiday cookie display. We found one of the best recipes over at Taste of Home.

If you have a favorite recipe we’d love to have you share it with us. Post it here or on our Facebook page.

 

Happy Baking!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Gifts they love

Looking for the perfect gift? Unique holiday gift baskets they’re gonna love!

With the holiday gift-giving season in full swing, we all have that person or people in our lives, that are either impossible to shop for, already have everything, or we’re just not finding something that screams “this is it”. Sure you can go grab a gift card, a bottle of wine, or a pre-made gift box and give those as gifts. That would be quick and easy right?

We have a better idea. Make unique gift baskets for everyone on your list this year. They are completely customizable, look beautiful, and you have complete control of their contents. Plus, we think you might have some fun making them too!

We’ll get your creative juices flowing with 10 basket ideas we plan on making this year.

BM Basket

Bloody Mary Basket. The vodka is the centerpiece of this basket so make sure you get a nice bottle. Add a bottle of Bloody Mary mix, hot sauce, seasoned salt, an array of pickled condiments, and some snack mix to round your basket out.  As a nice Added Touch, you could add personalized glasses with the recipient’s name.

lavender-1902943_640

Spa Day Basket. There are no rules for this one. Fill it with scented body washes, scrubs or sugars, bath accessories, facial treatments, and even a pair of warm slippers to tie it all together. A few candles, a fragrant diffuser, and soft music CD makes this gift even more special.

Pets 2

Pet Lovers Basket. Sometimes, when you give the gift to the special fur baby in someone’s life, you’re doing much more than giving the human parent something. You can fill these baskets with so many goodies like dog treats, toys, pet outfits, or even a new dish for food or water. Top it off with a beautiful frame for the human, so that they can proudly display their favorite picture of their beloved companion.

Salad Bowl

Salad Addict Gift Basket. You probably don’t want to add fresh produce to this gift, but you can give them wonderful additions to the standard salad. Think nuts, dried berries, tortilla strips, croutons, artichoke hearts, olive oils, a bottle of fancy vinegar, and don’t forget the gourmet dressings (make sure you don’t choose ones that need refrigeration). Instead of a basket, use a large salad bowl to hold everything and finish it off with serving utensils.

thecats paisleydazeclassiclife

kash sockred

The Cuddle Up Basket. This is for the person who either needs to relax or loves spending a peaceful day at home. Start with a set of pajamas, warm socks, a cozy blanket, and then include herb tea and honey or some trendy hot chocolate bombs. If you know what kind of movies they like, include a couple of Blu-ray discs.

Wine Gift

The Wine Drinkers Basket. Yep, we said a bottle of wine was quick and easy but an entire wine basket is a whole different thing. Choose good wines, and add wine glasses, wine glass charms, coasters, and chocolates. A wonderful added touch would be a gift certificate to a local cheese shop. Shopping for a beer lover instead? Swap out the wine items for craft brews, beer mugs, beef jerky, and nuts.

breakfast basket

The Breakfast Basket. The most important meal of the day has no rules. Pancake mix, maple syrup, bacon (make sure they can refrigerate right away), jams, breakfast biscuits, granola bars, coffee, tea, homemade sweet bread/muffins, or anything else you think they will enjoy can be added to this thoughtful gift. If you want to add some non-food items, consider coffee mugs or a gift certificate to a local restaurant for champagne brunch.

The Pickle Fanatic Basket. There are hundreds of different kinds of pickles out there. If you know someone crazy for pickles, this is a wonderful treat. You can get hot & spicy ones, sweet ones, sour ones, big pickles, and small pickles. You can even find things like pickle-flavored candy, chips, vodka, and nuts. A quick internet search of ‘pickle flavored’ will shock you. If you know someone who lives for hot sauce, you could do that instead.

italian-cuisine-4845518_640

The Pasta Chef  Basket. Fill it with unique kinds of pasta, robust sauces, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, pasta serving spoon, and a chef hat. Sweeten it up with Italian cookies and some limoncello.

The Barbecue Master Basket. Perfect for the king –or queen – of the grill, you can get super creative here. A nice set of BBQ tools, seasonings & rubs, barbeque sauces, hot pads, hickory or apple chips, metal skewers, and a digital meat thermometer are just some of the items you can stuff this basket with. Want to really make an impression? A gift certificate to the local meat market will make their holiday extra great!

When it comes to gift baskets, there is no right or wrongs. They are fun to make, always get a wonderful reception, and allow you to give folks exactly what they like. Come up with your own theme and fill those baskets full!

If you have creative ideas for unique gift baskets, please share them here or over on our Facebook page.

 

 

 

 

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christmas-balls

Easy Homemade Stocking Stuffers Perfect for Holiday Gift Giving

Many people are doing Thanksgiving weekend a little differently this year. Lots of folks won’t be traveling or hosting large get-togethers. Black Friday will be a more virtual event than anything else, and you’ll find yourself spending a lot of time at home with your immediate family.

So how can you spend your time after the feast is over? Enjoy a day of making homemade stocking stuffers! It’s a great way to spend fun family time, and you’ll have some wonderful gifts for the holiday season. These homemade presents will be perfect for friends, family, neighbors, teachers, and even your mail carrier or hairdresser. Pretty much anyone you’d like to share a little cheer with!

There are tons of great ideas out there, and many of them you can do with things you already have in your home. Here are some of our favorites. We hope you’ll find this fun to make and spread joy to others.

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Mint Sugar Scrub – Every gal loves beauty products and you only need a few ingredients to make this absolutely fabulous sugar scrub. All you need is ½ cup oil of your choice (we like coconut), 1/12-2 cups of sugar, 1 Tablespoon of peppermint extract, and a drop of green food color. Warm the oil in the microwave for about 20 seconds and add 1 ½ cups of sugar, the extract, and color. Mix everything until well combined (add some more sugar if it’s too moist). Pur in small mason jars and decorate with a festive ribbon or cloth under the canning lid. You can also use different essential oils or extracts (with different food colorings) to make a variety of scents.

Ornament

Salt Dough Ornaments – There is nothing more special on a tree than a one of a kind handmade ornament. Simply mix up 4 cups all-purpose flour, 1 cup salt, and 1 1/2 cups of warm water in a mixing bowl. Knead the dough until it is smooth. Roll it out and cut shapes with holiday cookie cutters or better yet, go freestyle. Be sure to make a hole for hanging (a straw works great) Bake for about an hour at 300°F until dry. Let them cool and then decorate!

Cinnamon Candle

Cinnamon Stick Candle Holder – Fill the air with the sweet smell of cinnamon for the holidays. It doesn’t get easier than this. Place cinnamon sticks around a candle, and hold them in place with a rubber band. Then cover the band with twine or ribbon for a beautiful, deliciously smelling gift.

Cocoa

Hot Cocoa Mix – Another stocking stuffer in a mason jar brings a sweet warm treat to all! Layer cocoa, sugar, powdered milk, and marshmallows in a jar. Decorate and share the sweet love. We found a great recipe at The Food Network

Sweater Stockings

Sweater Stockings – Want to step it up a notch? Create the actual stocking and stuff it with your handmade gifts using old sweaters. This is quite easy and they are absolutely adorable. Trace a stocking on an old sweater, cut it out, and then sew it inside out with the foldover sewn the opposite way.  Use fabric scraps, ribbon, or wood or metal house numbers to personalize.

We hope you’ll have tons of fun making these gifts! From the team at the Pajama Company, Happy Thanksgiving!

 

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Be Thankful Every Day – Start a Gratitude Journal

Thanksgiving is traditionally the time of year when we express gratitude for the things we have in life. Now more than ever, starting and ending your day on a positive note can make all the difference in your mood, outlook, and mental health. Not only that, focusing on the good – both big and small – can change a person’s entire perspective on life.

 

It’s easy to focus your energy on the not-so-great things that happen to you. Sometimes we feel that if we just pull the covers over our heads, it will all go away. The truth is, ignoring the struggles in life are only a temporary reprieve. You have to learn to appreciate the positives and take in everyday things we have to be thankful for. A gratitude journal is the perfect way for you to express yourself, and bring to the forefront all the things you might otherwise take for granted.

 

Starting a gratitude journal is a relatively easy task. We’ve got some great pointers to get you started and hopefully make writing in it part of your daily routine.

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Buy an actual journal. Sure you could use a laptop or a tablet to capture your thoughts, but there’s something about ink to paper that makes keeping a journal like this, that much more special. Purchase a nice book with enough pages to write in. You’ll likely refer back to it during the lower points in life to lift your spirits so you’ll want something that holds up.

 

Make it a morning routine. Start your day by writing down what you are thankful for. One line is all you need to write. Date the page and start your first line with “I’m thankful for (you fill in the blank).

I am thankful for _________

Make it an evening routine. Right now as you manage your daily grind, things that go on around you may be nothing more than the rut of everyday life. Once you start writing in your journal that will change. You’ll take notice of what’s going on around you, and it will trigger thoughts of all the amazing things you have to be thankful for. At the end of your day when you write about them, those same things will become enhanced and your heart will fill with even more gratitude.

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Don’t skip a day. Yes, life gets busy and responsibilities take over. Don’t let that be a reason to miss logging your thoughts. Make this a good habit that you don’t want to break.

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Share your thoughts.  A gratitude journal is not a diary but rather a way for you to embrace the positive things in your life. Share these things with loved ones like your family and friends. At some point, everyone you love will become an entry in your journal. They should know how you feel about them and why you are thankful for them. You may even inspire them to start their own journals

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Pay it forward. One of the best ways to express gratitude is to do something for someone that they can be thankful for. You never know, you just might just get your very own entry in their journal.

 

We promise; starting your own gratitude journal will be one of the best things you have ever done for yourself. There’s nothing better than living life with a positive attitude and making the very best of whatever life throws at you.

 

At the pajama company, we are thankful for you, our truly valued customers. We wish you and yours a very happy Thanksgiving.

 

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