RSS Email

Gifts for the Guy Who Has Everything

Each year I struggle with some of the same few people on my shopping list; Rob and my Dad. Both of them need nothing. Both of them get the things they want and need througout the year so gift giving ends up being a game of frivolous versus tear jerker. So how do you look for gifts for dad who has everything?

My dad is sentimental so anything that can possibly make him cry is a win. It’s often a contest between me and my sister on who can make him cry on Father’s Day.
Rob has a sentimental streak too but he loves more useful items too. He likes to tinker and game and have great shoes and loves watches.
Here is a list of my best gift giving ideas for every man in your lifeUnique and Special Gifts for the Man who has Everything
Every man deserves at least one pair of cuff links. Regardless if he’s a stock broker or a mechanic the opportunity may arise one day they he needs to wear cuff links.  Make them personal with his initials or special shape.
Even if he isn’t a brew master maybe this is the kick he needs to start a new hobby.
Keep it simple. Men don’t need chunky knits or bold patterns or embellishments. Gift something soft and neutral to go with jeans or a suit jacket. Find something that will last and remind him of who gave it to him each time he wears it.
The Perfect Mug
Whether he needs it for his desk or on the go find the perfect mug for his coffee, tea or bourbon to complete his drinking ritual.
Need I say more?  Everything is better with bacon and these spreads, these specific spreads are delicious. We buy them and add it to grilled bread, burgers and baked potatoes. The Black Pepper is MY favorite.
Charging Station
With all the tech at our disposal it’s only smart that we help him keep everything neat and tidy. A charging station keeps phones, tablets, cords and wallet at his fingertips ready for use.
Help him tame his facial hair with the Philips Norelco Shaver 9000. Smooth skin can be achieved with the right shaver and this one works at home or on the go.
Netflix Subscription
We use Netflix on a daily basis. It’s a great way to catch up on favorite shows or discover new ones.
Heated De-Icer
This only applies for those that live in areas that get snow.  But for those that DO get ice and snow this is a miracle. Make his job of cleaning off the cars easier.
Personalized Keychain
For the sentimental guy, gift something that he’ll treasure and use daily. Engrave anything from a guitar pic, cross to dog tog with a message of your choice. My shopping advice for this is Etsy.
These are just a few ideas of my own that the guys in my life would enjoy.  Take them and spin them into something that fits for the men you love.  What’s on your shopping list for those special men.
Please know that some of these ideas are my very own, some are recommended by brands that I work with and some are items we actually pay for all on our own. This post is my opinion 100%.

Macy’s Holiday Window Display Unveil Philadelphia

Everywhere Society DiscloseIt’s time for our family to get into the Christmas Holiday spirit. We’re planning to spend our Saturday with Macy’s in Center City Philadelphia as they debut their holiday window display. We’ll head in-store for a variety of family friendly activities, events, celebrity spottings and of course a visit from Santa himself. Macy's Holiday Window Display Unveiling Philadelphia

Since the early 1870s, Macy’s has been stunning visitors  with its festive holiday window displays and exciting family friendly events. Center City Philadelphia was the first store to ever feature holiday windows created for the pure fun and joy of the season and the tradition that still lives on today.

Available at every Macy’s store is the Believe, Write a Letter to Santa campaign. Have your child their letter to Santa and help make wishes come true.  Macy’s will count all the letters received and donate $1 for each to Make-A-Wish(R), up to a total of $1,000,000.Macy's Holiday Window Display Unveiling Philadelphia

Find out other ways your local stores are celebrating the season and don’t miss the fun. Be sure to make new memories with your family and hopefully start new traditions.

Hallmark #KeepsakeIt Sweepstakes & Giveaway

It the time of year that we really sit and remember the time that has gone by. Memories flood my brain as I unbox each ornaments and the kids try to remember where each one came from. Rob circles the tree adding the lights in a meticulous pattern. It’s Christmas season.Hallmark #KeepsakeIt Ornament Giveaway

Hallmark #KeepsakeIt Ornament Giveaway

Hallmark #KeepsakeIt Ornament Giveaway

During this time we also play holiday movies in the background. We don’t do heartwarming or old fashioned we go right for funny as the movies the kids choose are usually a mix of Elf, National Lampoons Christmas Vacation or The Grinch starring Jim Carry. This means we’re laughing and reciting lines as we’re decorating. This means the kids are re-enacting absurd scenes from some of their favorite movies. This means we’re enjoying the time we’re spending together.

This year will be no different. We’ll do what we always do but we’ll be able to add a fun new ornament to the mix. Hallmark has sent us a has sent us a keepsake to fit right into our traditions, The Grinch’s Heart Grew Three Sizes.Hallmark #KeepsakeIt Ornament Giveaway

The kids already noticed the new ornament in its box and asked to watch the movie. This means that building our collection by using our memories, family vacations and experiences is working. Thanks Hallmark for helping our family create, build and memories over the years.

Enter to win your own Hallmark Keepsake. Share your favorite family moments that you’d love to commemorate with a keepsake.

To receive these extra opportunities for entries, you must fulfill the first REQUIRED entry above. Please note the changes to the entries and frequency, entries that don’t follow rules may be disregarded/ignored/deleted

  • SUBSCRIBE to LookWhatMomFound…and Dad too! via NEW Email Subscription.
  • COMMENT on a recent Review/Our Life/Our Travels/Our Thoughts post, let us know where to find it
  • FOLLOW Melinda & Hallmark on Twitter and TWEET this giveaway (1 time per day), please leave your twitter link each time: Win a @Hallmark Ornament and #Keepsakeit for years to come from @melindababiak 
  • ENTER the Hallmark #KeepsakeIt Sweepstakes, come back and tell me you did
  • SHARE this giveaway on Google +, leave your link in comments below
  • SHARE this giveaway on Pinterest, leave your link in comments below
  • SHARE this giveaway on Instagram, leave your link in comments below
  • SHARE this giveaway on Facebook, leave your link in the comments below

Your entries must follow the rules or they won’t be eligible for prizes. This contest ends 11:59 pm, Tuesday, December 9, 2014. The winners will be emailed and will have 48 hours to claim their prize. This contest is open to Contiguous US residents, age 18 or over. For complete rules please read our blog contest rules page.

Christmas Tree Planting Ornament Craft #handmadeholidays

Each Christmas season as we start to decorate I get all kinds of nostalgic. I look at the boxes of handmade ornaments from years past and I remember the time when they kids and I made them or when they brought them home from school. Making our own ornaments each year is not only a great way to bulk up your inventory over the years its the best way to create memories and add your own touch to the holidays. This handmade Christmas Tree Planting ornament reminds me of the days of chopping down our own tree in years past and kinda pushes me back to that desire. Christmas Tree Planting Ornament Craft #HandmadeHolidays #BlogTour

When I was pregnant with Shaun we were about to venture out on our annual hayride to the Christmas tree farm when I knew I couldn’t do it. I was tired, plump, achy and grouchy. It was cold and I didn’t want to go. That year we spent a pretty penny and bought a gorgeous fake tree and have been using it each year since then. It’s still a great tree but we’re missing the memories of that family outing.

That decision hasn’t been made yet but making this adorable ornament is a great touch to any tree.


  • Styrofoam ball
  • Burlap or Muslin
  • Craft glue
  • Evergreen clippings
  • Ribbon or twine for hanging
  • Twine, yarn  or embroidery floss for tying
  • Straight pin
  • Button, acorn or other embellishment
  • Ribbon or hanging 8″-10″


Wrap your Styrofoam ball with your burlap. Tuck in edges so the ball is completely covered using the craft glue for some support.
While holding your burlap in place start spearing the Styrofoam with your evergreen clippings. Use the glue again to provide some staying power. With a straight pin insert a loop of hanging ribbon into the Styrofoam along with the branch pieces.
With a length of yarn or embroidery floss tightly tie the burlap closed. Cut off long ends.
Adjust and fold down your burlap and add button with glue. Set aside to dry
Hang on your tree, hook on wall or use to decorate a wreath.

Christmas Tree Planting Ornament side
Christmas Tree Planting Ornament Craft #HandmadeHolidays #BlogTour

Christmas Tree Planting Ornament Craft #HandmadeHolidays #BlogTour

Christmas Tree Planting Ornament Craft #HandmadeHolidays #BlogTour

Christmas Tree Planting Ornament Craft #HandmadeHolidays #BlogTour

Christmas Tree Planting Ornament Craft #HandmadeHolidays #BlogTour

Christmas Tree Planting Ornament Craft #HandmadeHolidays #BlogTour

This craft is part of a collaborative effort of 25 bloggers called 25 Days of Handmade Holidays. We each will showcase our crafty, artsy and creative abilities to celebrate the upcoming holidays by sharing our handmade ornaments, home decorations or DIY gifts.

Christmas Tree Planting Ornament Craft #HandmadeHolidays #BlogTour

25 Days of Handmade Holidays Blogger Collection

Simple Gift Giving This Year

With Christmas coming up in just 2 months the kids and I have been chatting about what they think they want and would be asking for. Recently on night sitting at the dinner table I asked that question and it took them way too long to answer. That means one thing, they have too much already.

We spoil our kids. They truly want for nothing with a house full of 4 gaming systems, 3 handheld gaming systems, 4 tablets, 3 laptops, a desktop, 4 smart phones, a flat screen tv & Blu-Ray player in every room and so much more.  This doesn’t include the random toys and games,  hundreds of DVDs and BluRays  as well as the vacations, trips and events we attend on any given weekend.Kids and Technology

We did this. We created these little monsters who can’t even think of another gift they would like. We provided not just necessities and essentials but all the fun they could imagine and even what they didn’t know was out there.

I’m flipping around our Christmas giving this year. There’s no way I’m spending my time and money on things that aren’t appreciated, needed or even wanted.

This year we’re doing things differently. The kids are going to have to choose 4 things

Four Gifts for Christmas

This makes the kids really take a look around and see everything they have and take stock of everything they are provided. I can’t control what others will shop for but in our household the holidays are going to mean more than just a pile of gifts under the tree.

I was going to add another something to the list but I’m thinking we can do that differently. Something to Give is now going to be a family charity activity. Maybe we’ll volunteer at a shelter, collect food for the hungry, paint a room at a community center or clean a playground. Doing this as a family will definitely have a bigger impact than just purchasing a pair of shoes and dropping them in a collection box.

What are your holiday gift giving traditions?

image courtesy via Pixabay 

Sweet and Salty Chocolate Chip and Walnut Cookies

There’s nothing like a classic chocolate chip cookie but taking that simple recipe in another direction can transform the flavor to something more decadent and appealing for new taste buds. These Sweet and Salty Chocolate Chip Walnut Cookies are of course sweet from the chocolate but the addition of coarse salt & toasted walnuts give them a whole new flavor profile.
Sweet and Salty Chocolate Chip and Walnut Cookies #recipe

The basic recipe is one I’ve been making for years. They are my go to chocolate chip cookies and this particular one makes a batch big enough for gatherings or gift giving.

No special ingredients are needed so these can be made using your pantry staples.

1 cup softened butter
1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar, packed
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp baking soda
3 cups flour
3/4 tsp coarse salt
2 cups chocolate chips
1 cup chopped, toasted nuts of choice

Sweet and Salty Chocolate Chip and Walnut Cookies #recipe


Preheat your oven to 350°. Cream your butter and sugars till smooth.

Add eggs and vanilla and beat till combined.

Dissolve baking soda in 2 tsp of hot water and mix into mixture.

Blend flour, salt, chocolate and nuts into butter/sugar/egg mixture till well incorporated.

Drop equal spoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets 2″ apart.

Sweet and Salty Chocolate Chip and Walnut Cookies #recipe

Bake for 9-10 minutes till cookies have risen and edges are browned. Let them set on cookie sheets for 1 minute then move to a cooling rack for several minutes.

Makes 4-5 dozen cookies.

Sweet and Salty Chocolate Chip and Walnut Cookies #recipe


The last minute addition of the course salt gives it little opportunity to melt into dough. This salty bite is a delicious contrast to the expected sweet you get from cookies.

Store in a plastic container for up to a week or package along with recipe for a sweet gift.

Do you have a go-to cookie recipe?

A Family of Christmas Stockings #PCHoliday

trackable pixelBlog Post Disclosure BannerWay back in the day when  we were just a family of 4 I spent a Christmas finding the “perfect” stockings and stocking hangers to display on our mantel.  I trudged out in the cold, snipped fresh holly branches and weave tiny twinkling lights through them and flaunted the beautiful design I had come up with.  Fast forward to the next 6 years and you’ll see only 3 stockings each Christmas attached to anything that had a flat surface. This year when the note came through that I could pick out new stockings for the whole family from Personal Creations I almost leapt out of my seat.  I knew we’d finally have what I’ve been wanting for a long time, these Ribbon Stockings personalized with our names.

Personalized Christmas Stockings

Personal Creations carries a HUGE selection for just about everyone.  The best part of their choices are most of them can be personalized to reflect a name, initial, special date or even more.  With hundreds of gifts to choose from for any occasion Personal Creations can be your shopping destination throughout the year.

I knew our stocking were on their way so I knew I had to come up with a new idea to hang all five of them. this house does not have the fireplace mantel that we used to have so I knew I had to get creative.  I scoured our makeshift workshop and found something that would work perfectly with some tweaking.

Christmas Stocking Holder DIY

Christmas Stocking Holder DIY

Using a simple unused wood shelf, existing paint & stain and some bought decorations and hardware I came up this Christmas Stocking Holder. The project was very easy. I painted and stained a plain wood shelf till I achieved a color I like and took an old wrench and a hammer to it to add some distressed details.  The words and stickers were less than $10 from the craft store and Rob found these antique brass bolts. I thought there were a unique and better alternative to plain hooks.

Christmas Stocking Holder DIY

The stockings look great hanging up.  Even without a mantel they stand out with this special new home. I’m not forgetting about our new ornament.  Each year I get new ornaments for the kids or family that mark a significant point in the year or commemorate another wonderful year together.  The Family in Bed ornament was adorable and I knew it was a good fit for our family.

Family Ornament

This ornament will stay on the family tree but individual ornaments that the kids received are put right on their own trees. When they are grown up and have families of their own they’ll have a great start for the holidays and great stories and memories to share.

Shop today for your own personalized ornaments and stockings to ensure availability and delivery in time for the holidays. Personal Creations is offering you 20% off all of your purchases through the end of December. Click here to start shopping and the 20% will be applied in your shopping cart.

Follow Personal Creations Blogger Board: Christmas Ideas on Pinterest

Holiday Decorating Chat #SearsHoliday Twitter Party 11/7 1pm CST

We’d love for you to join the #SearsHoliday Twitter party on Thursday November 7, 2014 1pm CST. We’re gonna talk holiday decorating, trends, traditions and more and of course they’ll be prizes to be won.

Sears Twitter Party #SearsHoliday

To RSVP and have a chance to win one of the prizes, make sure you do the following:

– Follow the host @Sears, as well as co-host @SearsDeals.
– Retweet one of the promotional tweets announcing the party. These normally contain “RT to RSVP” in them.
– Participate in the conversation when it occurs Thursday, November 7th at 1:00PM CST by answering questions and chatting to others under the #SearsHoliday hashtag. Make sure you use #SearsHoliday or we won’t be able to see your replies!

The winners will be selected as the party goes on, but if any of the above criteria are missing you will be unable to claim your prize. If you are announced a winner, simply reply that you accept the prize and a Sears Holding rep will be in contact with you via DM for the next steps.

shop your way sears

Hope to see you there!

Christmas Ornament Show and Tell

Each weekend after Thanksgiving I sit on the floor and slowly and methodically unwrap each Christmas tree ornament. I had each one the kids so they can decorate but not before I inspect each ornament and often make a comment about where it came from or who gave it to us.

Many of our ornaments have a story, some stories aren’t that exciting they are our stories and memories. I’m sharing along with some other great bloggers my favorite ornaments. Check out the entire link up with Jo-Lynne, Musings of Housewife.


christmas ornament show and tell


In honor of my amazing Hot Air Balloon Ride earlier this year I picked up this beauty from Pottery Barn on Black Friday. It’s beautifully and rustically painted to resemble vintage mercury glass. It makes me smile.
hot air balloon ornament

This one is was a gift from my best friend many years ago. The scene of ice skaters isn’t necesarily important but the gift felt like a milestone. It was a moment in our lives that was grown up and family oriented. Gone were the days of frivolous clothing gifts or promises of nights out on the town.  This was an important step in sharing our adult lives.
skater ornament

While this one may look homemade, it isn’t. In fact this one that the kids picked out many many years ago at Linvilla Orchards right after the fire. These guys usually hang from a rotating plug at the bottom of the tree but we figured the dogs wouldn’t cooperate with such a tease.
gumdrop ornament
I didn’t share the kids ornaments because Sabreena and Shaun have their own trees decorated with their own ornaments.  Shae has another year before she can get a tree and she then takes all of her ornaments for her own room. When the kids are moved out and ready for them they will receive their ornaments to start their own grown up lives with a memory filled holiday.

Do you have a favorite ornament?

I Disclose

Another Christmas In The Books

Hope everyone had a great holiday.  I know we did here and the kids have the gifts to prove it.  The last few days have been crazy busy with visiting my grandparents and parents on Saturday. Then yesterday we did Christmas at our house.  My in laws as well as my two brother in laws and my sister in law came over and Melinda made an awesome dinner which consisted of ham, homemade mac and cheese, stuffing, homemade garlic mashed potatoes and garlic green beans.  For dessert we had a cannoli cake that we bought from the local bakery which was awesome.  Needless to say it has been busy for the last few days but it has been a lot of fun at the same time.

Waiting to Come Downstairs

Checking Out All Of The Goods

Shae Loves Mike

Sabreena Can't Wait To Dance

What Is This?

Shaun And Skylanders. His New Obsession.

Shaun Is So Excited

Shaun Checking Out All Of His Skylander Figurines

Shae Looks Mad For Some Reason. LOL.

Sleeping On Their New Pillow Pets

I Disclose