Last Minute Gift Ideas

Hey guys, man it's been a busy week! 

After working third shift Sunday night into Monday morning, I went home and took a power nap before getting on the road to head to Atlanta for the next couple days. 
 Since my family has decided to up and go to California for Christmas, we decided to do our gift exchange this past week. 

Tuesday morning, we got up and ready and headed into the city to attend my dads annual work Christmas work party. Everyone cooked a dish and brought it to the party, creating tables and tables of dessert and lunch items. It was super delicious! I'm a sucker for a dessert bar so I filled up on sweets before I even touched my plate of food. The dessert bar had cake, peanut butter cookie dough balls, sugar cookies, brownies, pecan pie, coffee cake, and lots more! Seeing my dad at work in his natural environment was really fun. That's the first time I've ever been to his work during office hours, where all the staff is still there. He prepared a speech and praised his staff for their dedication and hard work in this last year. Like I had told my mom, it's one thing to know the side of your dad that you see all the time at home in one environment, but it's another to see him at work, where he manages and directs hundreds of people. It was inspiring to see him up in front of the room, speaking to a large group of people and praising them for a job well done this year. People seem to love him. Watching him up there doing his thing really put his role at work into perspective, and left me in awe of him and how much he's accomplished in his career. 

After the Christmas party, mom and I stopped by our favorite store, TJ Maxx. We can kill some serious time in there. We managed to fit in not one, but TWO TJ Maxx shopping sprees while I was in town. On the first trip to TJ Maxx, I found this Steve Madden trench coat. I was so excited! I've been searching for a trench coat for years that was both affordable and cute. After trying it on, I walked around the store convincing myself I needed it. It's been such a warm winter here in Georgia this year, that I wasn't sure if it was a necessity at the moment. Well, I got it and I love it! I'll be breaking it in this week as we brave the 18 hour drive to visit family in Kansas for the holidays. 

Gold and black decor is trending at TJ Maxx right now, so if that's your thing, stop by and check it out. I have to admit, I wanted to buy everything right then and there and redecorate my entire room in black and gold. Maybe it's because most of the wall decor was shiny or glittery that I was so attracted to it. I'm loving it though! 

On Wednesday I had a girls day with my mom and we treated ourselves to lunch at the Cheesecake Factory. Their Filet Mignon is the most delicious steak I've ever had before. I swear it disappeared from my plate in seconds. It's so tender and juicy. It has that perfect charcoal grilled taste to it, topped with a salty and delicious seasoning. Once you try it, you'll dream about it. It's that good, I swear by it!  

On Black Friday last month, I was walking by Pottery Barn when I had to do a second take at all the lit candles in the display. I'm thinking to myself, "Well that's not a fire hazard or anything..." I was so concerned, that I actually stopped walking and went into Pottery Barn to investigate. I had to physically touch the flame to find out that the wick is plastic. These candles are awesome! There's a plastic piece shaped like a flame that has a light inside of it that flickers. Together, the two move in opposite directions to make you think it's a real candle flame. Could of fooled me! These candles would be a unique gift this season to all your candle lovers. They're especially great in decorative lanterns. 

You can find at Brookstone or Pottery Barn

We were at William Sonoma when they demonstrated the use of a Nespresso machine. I've been ranting and raving to my mom about how cool it would be to get an espresso machine. After trying a sample of a Nespresso, I was sold! There's two machines in the picture above. The machine on the left makes both coffee and espresso. It also comes in a bundle with a milk frother, so during the demonstration she made me an espresso topped off with milk. Delicious! The machine on the left retails for $299.99 and the machine on the right retails for 499.99. From what I understand, the machine on the right has the frother actually attached to the machine and it's specifically only for espresso. Why it's more expensive then? I'm not quite sure lol. The only downside of this brand though is that the espresso and coffee pods have to be purchased online on their site, and they average $1.25/pod. 

Holiday Nespresso machine deals 

The fun unplanned expenses of being an adult with a car. After replacing my tires in March of this year, I began noticing a vibration coming from my tires that I could feel in my steering wheel, gas pedal, and brake pedal. After several differernt "expert" opinions, the consensus was that I needed new tires. According to the tire experts, I should of gotten an alignment when I replaced my tires earlier this year and because I didn't, the tires wore down on the inside, causing the annoying vibrations. It was hard to tell what was causing the vibrations because form the outside, my old tires still had a good amount of tread left on them, but on the inside, they were completely worn down as though I had driven 75,000 miles on them. Im happy to report that after spending $650 on a set of new tires, the vibrations are gone and my car's back to riding smooth again. What an expensive lesson that was! This year alone, I've spent $1100 on tires. Learn from my experience...rotate and balance your tires every 5,000-10,000 miles and make you get an alignment every time you purchase a new set of tires. And an additional note* I hit two deer a year ago that almost totaled my car. Accidents and pot holes can throw off your alignment as well, so stay on the safe side and get an alignment in any of those situations to prevent wear and tear on your tires. 

Here's some extra stocking stuffer ideas + last minute gift ideas: 

For your selfie lover, why not get them a selfie beanie? Perfect! 

For your nail polish lover, OPI has some great deals on their nail polishes at TJ Maxx. 

I personally bought this one to try, and I love it! 

For your chocolate/cookie lover, chocolate covered Oreos. They are delicious. I ate all 4 on my lunch break today lol. 

For your sweet scented candle lover, oh my gosh!! This candle is amaze balls. I bought the mini one for a friend and the large one for myself. I love vanilla, birthday cake, caramel, any sweet scented candles. This one = must have! The house smelled so delicious! You know when you get that feeling like you could lick the candle, that it's a winner. 

Got back into town Thursday, just in time for our work Christmas party on Friday. Tell me why we were having an ugly Christmas sweater party, and I was the only one to show up in an ugly Christmas sweater. Apparently the joke was on me, but it was all in good fun because when I turned the light switch on my sweater, the party was over. Majority vote determined I had won the sweater contest. Whoop whoop! 

I bragged too soon when I had reposted an image on FB talking about how warm our winters been. That same night, temperatures dropped from the 70's to the 30's and it's been freezing over the last several days. 

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