Super Bowl Football Party Games for Adults

Super Bowl Football Party Games for Adults

Super Bowl Sunday seems like a holiday to most Americans—there are even efforts to get the day after to be a national holiday. Many of my friends don’t even watch football, and they still love to celebrate the Super Bowl with a party, usually hosted by yours truly. In fact, I’ve made a list of common football terms and the goals of the game so my less football-savvy friends can know a little reason as to why there are so…

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The Most Creative Gift Exchange Game Ideas for Your Next Party

The Most Creative Gift Exchange Game Ideas for Your Next Party

“Gift exchanges aren’t just for Christmas, silly!”, my coworker Kathryn laughed as she closed her laptop and got up to refill her coffee. She had just told me she was planning a getaway weekend for the girls at our office at her parents’ lake house. But when she told me she was organizing a gift exchange for the occasion, she immediately picked up on my puzzled look. A few weeks later, ten of us ladies were tearing open immaculately wrapped…

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Relaxing After the Holidays: Gifts to Give Yourself

Relaxing After the Holidays: Gifts to Give Yourself

Let’s face it, the holidays can be draining. Now, I absolutely love Christmas and New Years, but by the end of the festivities, I am utterly exhausted. All the shopping, traveling, cooking, feasting, and visiting really takes it out of me, and I crave some quality downtime. It’s like I need a holiday from the holidays! Last year, I decided to do just that when the festivities were over. I wanted to start the year feeling rested and rejuvenated rather…

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Four Pampering Gift Ideas for Her Healthy New Year

Four Pampering Gift Ideas for Her Healthy New Year

Every January, as I sweep up balls of wrapping paper and Christmas cookie crumbs, I ponder how I’ll make a positive change in the coming months. Making New Year’s resolution is a fun and inspiring tradition for me, but my sister has been staunchly against resolutions for years, insisting no one ever keeps them anyway. However, this year brought some fairly serious health scares to my sister and she finally gave in, agreeing to make some resolutions to improve her…

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Health and Fitness Gifts for Him to Kick Off a New Year

Health and Fitness Gifts for Him to Kick Off a New Year

I love my brother Sam, but wow, is he a pain to shop for! One year, I bought him a video game, but he never played it. His girlfriend Kelly later told me, in whispers, that he only played first-person shooters. I had gotten him the wrong kind of game! Then last year, he grew a beard, which he really got into. So I bought him a fancy beard grooming kit, complete with oils and brushes. When he came over…

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The Best Yankee Gift Exchange Game: Ideas for How to Play

The Best Yankee Gift Exchange Game: Ideas for How to Play

“Jingle Bells, Batman smells, Robin laid an egg!” I screeched as my sister and I dissolved into a pile of giggles at the lyrics. I’ve never been one to take the holidays too seriously, preferring silly Halloween costumes to spooky ones, Galentine’s Day to Valentine’s Day, and birthdays full of mirth. That’s why I’m obsessed with the funny, frenetic Yankee gift exchange game that I play with my friends and family every chance I get. While I love a classic…

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Tips and Tricks for Throwing a Last Minute Party for New Year’s Eve

Tips and Tricks for Throwing a Last Minute Party for New Year’s Eve

Impromptu—it’s one of my favorite words, but funnily enough, impromptu gatherings always throw me for a loop. I prefer to plan and prepare for everything well in advance, but that changed last year when my husband and I decided to throw a last-minute party for New Year’s Eve. A day before the big countdown, we ran into a friend who asked if we had any New Year’s plans. I tried to change the subject, as I was looking forward to…

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A Twist on the Secret Santa Game for Last Minute Christmas Fun

A Twist on the Secret Santa Game for Last Minute Christmas Fun

We gathered around my mom, anxiously shifting from foot to foot as she shook a red and green bag filled with slips of paper. On each slip was written a name—the name of the person we would need to buy a present for as part of our annual Secret Santa game. Finding out who I was assigned to was always my favorite part (other than opening my present, that is!). But after we drew names, my mom unleashed a surprise:…

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Funny and Festive Secret Santa Game Reveal Ideas

Funny and Festive Secret Santa Game Reveal Ideas

“Please tell me! Pleeeease!” my niece begged over the phone. We were two weeks away from Christmas, and she was dying to know who drew her name for our family’s big Secret Santa game. “The surprise is part of the fun,” I explained, knowing full well that hearing such words was agony to a seven-year-old. I remembered how, when I was a kid, my sister and I would conspire with our cousins to trade gift recipients and try to figure…

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Six Stress-Free Last Minute Christmas Shopping Tips

Six Stress-Free Last Minute Christmas Shopping Tips

“Rockin’ around/the Christmas tree,” crooned Brenda Lee. I was making circles in the mall parking lot, and this was the third or fourth rendition of my favorite holiday song I’d heard in the time it was taking me to find a spot. Usually, I try to Christmas shop throughout the year to avoid these eleventh hour journeys, but I’d been traveling for work a lot that year. Now I needed to get gifts for everyone in the family—on the last…

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Make Your Own Christmas Ornament Projects You Can Gift or Keep

Make Your Own Christmas Ornament Projects You Can Gift or Keep

There’s nothing I love more about Christmas than decorating the tree. When I was little, my family and I would turn on our favorite Mel Torme Christmas cassette, fill a tray with Christmas cookies my mom had baked, pass around the eggnog, and begin merrily untangling the lights and hanging ornaments. The best part was opening the box of ornaments and being reminded of all the wonderful memories attached to each one. And while they all had a special place…

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Homemade Edible Christmas Food Gifts You Can Make in Advance

Homemade Edible Christmas Food Gifts You Can Make in Advance

I’m not the craftiest person in the world, so it goes without saying that DIY Christmas gifts are not my forte. Give me a glue gun or a needle and I’ll probably end up hurting myself rather than creating something impressive. What I can do, however, is cook. One Christmas, fresh out of pastry school with very little money to spend on Christmas gifts, I used my new confectionary skills to make nougatine with rosewater, pistachios, and dried cherries for…

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Easy Last-Minute Christmas Gifts

Easy Last-Minute Christmas Gifts

“They’re here! They’re here!” my kids squealed, running between the just knocked-upon front door and the kitchen, where I was elbow-deep in sugar cookie dough. My sister was slated to arrive for a Christmas visit that night, but she was two hours early. Not to worry! I thought, remembering all the time we spent meticulously cutting out and decorating cookies when we were kids. I wiped the dough off my hands and ran to the door, flinging it open to…

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A Festive Christmas Wish List Maker for Kids That’s Online, Free, and Easy

A Festive Christmas Wish List Maker for Kids That’s Online, Free, and Easy

When my daughter told me she wanted “the new Barbie” for Christmas, I should have known there was more to the story than that. I arrived at my local big box retail emporium and asked an employee to direct me toward the “cool new Barbie.” She led me to the toy section, then down a hot-pink aisle lined floor-to-ceiling with dolls. “They’re pretty much all new this year,” she said. I bought (and eventually exchanged) the wrong “new” Barbie, and…

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Traditional Kwanzaa Gift Ideas to Make Homemade

Traditional Kwanzaa Gift Ideas to Make Homemade

I was in college the first time I was invited to a Kwanzaa celebration. Some girls in my dorm were hosting a Kwanzaa feast in the common room and asked if I wanted to come. Honored that they wanted me to witness this special celebration, I said yes. But in the days leading up to the event, I realized I didn’t know much about the holiday and decided to do some research. Kwanzaa first began in the 1960s as a…

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Hanukkah Gift Giving Etiquette Do’s and Don’ts

Hanukkah Gift Giving Etiquette Do’s and Don’ts

My best friend Sadie married the kindest, funniest, most thoughtful man. We always say she won the lottery with Evan! And while there are many things I admire about their relationship, what I find most interesting is their unique holiday traditions. Evan’s mom’s side of the family is Jewish, so Sadie celebrates both Hanukkah and Christmas every year. As you can imagine, their December is jam-packed with celebration, gift-giving, and delicious feasts. A few years back, the two of them…

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The Best Online Wish List Website for Making a Child’s Christmas List

The Best Online Wish List Website for Making a Child’s Christmas List

When I was a kid, my sister and I started checking the mailbox with excitement in early November to see if the gigantic Sears Christmas catalog had arrived. When it finally did, it was the start of the Christmas season for us. The catalog also served as a guide for our parents when they made the long journey to the nearest mall to buy our presents.  If they couldn’t find what we wanted there, they would mail in the order…

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Quirky Christmas Party Games for Adults

Quirky Christmas Party Games for Adults

My mom and aunt were dancing the Macarena. The catch? They were doing the right dance moves, but to the song “All I Want For Christmas is You,” all while wearing flashy elf hats.   Our family holiday party had been a bit dull, so we decided to split into teams and have a dance-off. We thought the kids would be most excited about the game, but to our surprise, they went into the other room to watch a movie…

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Inspiring New Year’s Eve Party Games for Adults

Inspiring New Year’s Eve Party Games for Adults

I’m not one for wild and crazy New Year’s parties. Instead, I like to slip on a cozy pair of slippers and spend the night at home with my husband, a few close friends, and a a bunch of yummy snacks. Every year, as the clock ticks closer and closer to midnight on December 31, we take some time to reflect on all the wonderful things the last year has brought. As we flip through photos of our adventures, our…

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Family-Friendly Christmas Online Wish List Ideas That Are Easy and Free

Family-Friendly Christmas Online Wish List Ideas That Are Easy and Free

“An igloo. Doll bunk beds for my cats. A cheese bead necklace,” my mom said, reading off my niece’s Christmas list. “And where am I supposed to buy a cheese bead necklace?” I asked, laughing. Luckily, in addition to the adorable hand-written letter, my mom had also helped my niece set up a wish list online, filled with toys I could actually purchase. When you’re dealing with small kids or a big family, juggling all your shopping lists can be…

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How to Throw a Festive Christmas Ornament Gift Exchange Game Party

How to Throw a Festive Christmas Ornament Gift Exchange Game Party

“Every one of these has a story,” I explained to my husband as I pulled the gigantic box of holiday decor down from my closet shelf. Itty bitty snowmen, glittery snowflakes, and strands of tinsel spilled out the sides as I plopped it on the living room floor. We’d just bought our very first Christmas tree as a couple, and I wanted to impress him with my extensive collection of festive ornaments. Much to my delight, he seemed amused with…

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Manly Secret Santa Gifts for Guys

Manly Secret Santa Gifts for Guys

“Ah! Socks!” My father-in-law had just opened his present and was genuinely happy to see the gift inside. As a kid, I hated getting socks for Christmas, but my father-in-law, an avid outdoorsman, always needed thick wool socks to keep his feet warm and dry. As I’ve learned over the years of shopping for guys with traditionally masculine interests, it’s important to try to get inside their heads—just because socks seem boring to me doesn’t mean they aren’t the perfect…

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Fun Holiday Party Games for Work Office Parties

Fun Holiday Party Games for Work Office Parties

“Come out, come out, wherever you are!” my boss called, while I trembled beneath the cleaning supplies in the janitor’s closet. As her footsteps drew nearer, I tried to hold my breath and remain as silent as possible when—BANG! The door flung open, and I saw my boss and my coworkers laughing. I was the last one found during our annual game of hide-and-seek, played during our Halloween party. As I crawled out of the closet, grinning from ear to…

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Funny Christmas Gift Exchange Ideas for Holiday Parties

Funny Christmas Gift Exchange Ideas for Holiday Parties

We’d been watching my father-in-law hack away at an enormous ball of duct tape for the better part of an hour. Each year, his niece gives him a present that’s as difficult to open as possible, and this year, he nearly gave up. That’s when Grandma brought out the saw. The whole family was laughing hysterically as my father-in-law sawed through layer after layer of tape. Finally, sweat pouring down his brow, he came upon a small box. We all…

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