Sunday, December 25, 2011

Ask Bree: Last Minute Holiday Gift Ideas/Free Christmas Gift!

(Me and my models at the Nightmare Before Christmas Show I planned 2 years ago)

Happy Holidays everyone! The Holidays are among us, Christmas especially! I was a procrastinator and did all of my holiday shopping on Christmas eve. However, for all of those SUPER procrastinators out there, have no fear! There is still time to get Christmas gifts for those people that you know that you won't see today. If you have procrastinated, there's a 99% chance that you aren't exactly sure what you want to purchase, or make. Well below I have a few ideas. Enjoy!
1. Super Stocking
Never underestimate the power of a super stocking. At this time of year, stores are basically giving away Christmas items, so finding affordable things to stuff your stocking with shouldn't be a problem! Depending on the person, you can stuff your super stocking with dvds, christmas candy, scarves, accessories and much more! If it's for someone who is just as super as the stocking, try your hand at writing a poem or sweet letter to include in the stocking.

2. Make up Bag
This would be a great gift for a teenager! NYC and Elf have really affordable eye shadows, makeup brushes and nail polishes for as low as $1 each, so a small bag full of these goodies would make any trend setting girl excited! This is actually one of my gift ideas, so feel free to steal it. I'll comment below and let you know if she likes it ;)

3. Baked Goodies
I don't know about anyone else, but food is the way to my heart. If baking is your thing, please bake and make someone very happy this holiday! If baking is not your thing, PLEASE stay out of the kitchen! The Art of Being Cool does not condone burning your house down on Christmas day...or any other day for that matter!

4. Date Night
If you have not gotten your significant other a gift yet, shame on you! It's okay though; times are hard! Use a special date night to substitute, or add on to your Christmas gift.  You can take them out for a night on the town to a place that they've never been to, go watch a movie on the other side of town, or plan a romantic stay in for the two of you. This date night can also work for best friends. Take your friend out to the cool bakery in your town's art district, or to a comedy show. The key is just being a bit creative ;)

Free Purse-Sized Essence of Beauty Hand Cream At CVS
Like Minute Clinic on Facebook, and go to the “Special Offers” tab, to get a Free Purse-Sized Essence of Beauty Hand Cream CVS Coupon. There is no purchase necessary! The coupon is sent to your email address. Just print and bring to any CVS/pharmacy store to redeem. You can select from three great scents – Sunflower, Japanese Garden or Citrus Coconut! Registration ends 12/26/11. Limited-time offer ends 12/30/11 or while supplies last.

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Thursday, December 22, 2011

Pre-New Years Resolution Challenge/ Mission: Socialite

Hello, Everyone! I have decided that I need to make a pre-resolution, and I would love to invite you to join me! This pre-resolution has been inspired by my recent decision on working my way up to socialite status in my city, Charlotte, NC. Why do I all of a sudden want to become a socialite? It's not so that I can be invited to all of the best parties or top restaurants, or anything. It's for the sake of my non-profit organization, Party For Autism. I feel that in order for Party For Autism to have the most success, it needs a well known leader standing behind it. Therefore, I will be dedicating my time in becoming a socialite, and showing you guys every step of the way!
First step on the socialite checklist is outward appearance and inward health. I have been struggling with 5-10 pounds in my mid section that I would love to finally get rid of in my mid section. Therefore, I have put together a health plan that will help me beautify both my insides and my outsides! 
Current Statistics:

Height: 5'7"
Weight: 134.5 lb 
Waist: 30 inches
Goal Weight: 127 by January 6th
Goal Waist: 27 inches by January 6th
Below is the diet plan that I have been following. I've been on the diet already for 3 days, and I started at 137, so I think it's working! It could just be water weight though.
Here are the rules for Joining my Socialite Diet Challenge:

Two Week Diet Challenge:
*Calorie intake: between 1250-1400 calories per day
 (it is unhealthy for women to eat less that 1000 calories a day, so don't modify this too much!)
*No Meat- I am allowed one cheat on Christmas though ;)
*2.5-3 litres of water
* split calories into 5-6 meals a day (3 meals and 2 snacks)
*No Fast Food (no exceptions!)

Some foods that I have included to my diet are Special K cereals, Special K protein bars, yogurt, cheese and crackers, and fruits. The biggest thing that has helped me so far is writing down everything that I eat and the calories that go with each item. That way, at the end of the day, if I'm short a few calories, I can sneak in a piece of chocolate! Yum!

Two Week Exercise Challenge:
I have decided that since I am a dancer at heart, the best exercise for me is Zumba! Plus, on the forum boards that I've read, woman have reported losing more than 1000 calories from 1 hour of intense Zumba. The only problem, is that I'm not a member of any gym, and don't have the money to do so. Therefore, I have resorted to the wonderful world of Youtube! Below are my two favorite Brazillian Zumba videos on youtube that I put on repeat and do for 2 hours a day; one hour early in the day, one hour in the evening.
The teacher's name is Helio, and he is amazing!

Anyone up for my challenge? If so, I would love to do check-ins, and possibly have a prize for the winner ;)
*I will also be launching a new series called Mission: Socialite that will give you guys the tricks that I'm using in my hopes of becoming a local socialite!

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Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Holiday Essentials: Snowman Tea Kettle

Vintage Tea Kettle Snowman
Good Morning! I hope that you guys are enjoying my list of Holiday Essentials! Next on my list is my favorite thus far; this absolutely adorable Snowman Tea Kettle! I don't know how my winter holidays have survived without it! I found this gem at Junk To Gem on Etsy! Isn't this adorable!
Vintage Tea Kettle Snowman
Vintage Tea Kettle Snowman
With such an amazing tea kettle, I will have to leave you with an equally amazing tea recipe for the holidays! Try this super easy, and super delicious tea recipe!
Spiced Holiday Tea
2 cups water

3 tea bags (unflavored black tea)

4 star anise

1 3 inch cinnamon stick

1 cup passion fruit nectar

3 tablespoons honey

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1. In a medium saucepan bring water to boiling. Add tea bags, anise, and cinnamon stick. Reduce heat. simmer, uncovered, for 3 to 5 minutes. Discard tea bags and cinnamon stick. Stir in nectar, honey, and lemon juice. Heat through.
2. Pour tea mixture into four heat-proof cups, floating a star anise on top of each. Makes 4 servings.

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Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Holiday Essentials: Door Wreaths

Sweet Treats Initial Christmas Wreath
Happy Holidays, everyone! To continue with my list of holiday essentials, I bring to you, Door Wreaths! I've always wanted to own a wreath because to me, they are a symbol of the happy holidays that will be coming through your door. However, I've never seen wreaths these festive before! Check out a few of my favorites, and let me know which on is your favorite! How are you decorating your door this holiday season? I'm going to talk my roommates into pitching in to buy one of these cute wreaths! Help me pick out which one below!
XL Timeless, nostalgic Americana Christmas wreath w charming vintage Santa, sweet gnome elf , loads of vintage ornaments
LIME GREEN and RED Deco Mesh Christmas Wreath
Christmas wreath with Santa
Christmas Wreath
Custom Made Santa Christmas Wreath or Gingerbread Holiday Wreath of your choice with FREE US Shipping
Which one do you like the most?
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Monday, December 5, 2011

Etsy Shop-UgChugs

Hi Everyone! Today I am sharing a Etsy shop that I found and immediately fell in love with! UgChugs is a Etsy Shop that features the most unique expression mugs that I've ever seen! Owners, Chad and Meghan Nelson are a married couple that decided to quit their jobs to open up an art studio. These two people have to be some of my favorite people in the world, especially after reading their blog! Check out a few of my favorite items below: 
Coffee Mug Soup Bowl
Pottery Cup, Blue Super Hero, Batgirl
Couple Gift, His and Her Coffee Mugs
Coffee Mug Dentist Gift
Make sure to like UgChugs' Facebook page!
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Sunday, December 4, 2011

Win a Nook Simple Touch E-Reader!

Happy Holidays! Party For Autism (for those who don't know, Party for Autism is my non-profit organization) wants to make your holiday a little sweeter by offering a chance to win a Nook Simple Touch E-reader for the holidays! 
All you have to do it donate $1 to our cause for a chance to win. $1 equals 1 entry, so the more that you donate, the better your chances are of winning this prize! But act fast, the giveaway ends on December 7th at 11:59pm EST
Good Luck and thank you for your donation! All of the proceeds go back to the autism community through our college program, summer program and events throughout the year!
Click here to read about all of the Nook Simple Touch E-Reader features!
Also, make sure to visit the Party For Autism website!
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Saturday, December 3, 2011

Holiday Essentials: Holiday Mugs

Christmas Mug Cozy Green Red White Holiday Cup Cozy
Hi Everyone! I hope that you have been enjoying your holiday season! Now that it is finally December, I have prepared a list of Holiday Essentials for your holiday season. First on the list are holiday mugs! Check out a few of my favorite mugs to keep your hot mocha and ciders warm during the winter!
Whimsical Ceramic Large Round Santa Belly Mugs - Handpainted in Red and Black
Festive Snowman Grim Teacup Mug from Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Soccer Snowman  travel mug cup cozy coffee blue crochet
Silly Santa Mug with Mustache and Beard
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