Tuesday, 12 December 2017

Holiday Gift Guide: Stuff I bought for myself..

While this is the season of giving isn't it the hardest thing to go to the mall this time of year?
because I want EVERYTHING.

And like I said a few posts ago I see everything as a prop so I double convince myself that I need things.

"Oh makeup bags?! I own a lot of makeup I could use those, plus they would look cute on Instagram!"

So here are a few thoughts on what to get for 'her'..
or me, because these are all things that I really like and own.

*This post is in collaboration with Chamilia, and may contain affiliate links.
Affliate links don't change anything for you but they may give me a commission if you buy. 

My first thought this year was that I wouldn't waste money on the junky stuff for my sisters but instead I would invest in quality.

I was thinking either bracelets or anklets because that's a one size fits all!
I am a huge bracelet wearer, you probably don't see me with them much on Instagram stories because I am always doing my makeup so I wait until that's done or I'd have sliding/jingly bracelets monopolizing my mic sound. lol

I typically keep a few bracelets next to my lipstick at the front door and I layer them on my way out.
I like the style of this C'est la vie $59 cad (click me) because it is so layer-able, looks good with a watch too!

Who was I kidding with the 'one nice thing and that's it'..
I could not avoid the 'junkies'.

Clearly you need some junkies to fill up the gift bag and you know what, there has been Christmas' when the junk gift was my favorite of the whole bunch.

I started with Chokers.
Chokers are the hottest accessory right now and they look good from tween to middle age, I wear them to dress up a sweater shirt as much as a fancy outfit.
(I blame Kylie Jenner for the oversized plain black T style coming back, I love it and hate it. lol)

You can get a 12 pack of black chokers on amazon for $9.99
$9.99!!! what!
- Click here for $9.99 chokers

I should mention I am a amazon prime member so free shipping for me is pretty much a given, if that link doesn't offer cheap shipping look around! there were tons of choker options and all different quantity/styles options.

Amazon Prime memberships cost $79 cad (Click me) and you get free 2 day shipping, yadda, yadda.
This could also make a great gift LOL ^ I hate paying membership fees myself, would love it to be gifted.

Makeup bags, I can never have enough!
It's hard to find these exact ones as I ordered them a while ago but..
- How cute are these ones?! click me $12

and there are TONS of fruit (pineapple, strawberries, donuts lol) or cat options..
- watermelons! $6 Click me

- Stop being so cute! 3 for $20.. I want these.

I LOVE a Christmas sweater, you know I do.
I especially love a cheeky one like this ^

Mind you, these are terrible quality! LOLing
They're not going to last the long haul nor be a comfortable cotton but for what they are: hilarious!/ profile pic worthy/imagine the family photo these sweaters could wield.
They're perfect.
- Merry Christmas Bitches! Click me

I will say SIZE UP, these are not made for curves.
Not if you like oversized anyway, I want everything extremely oversized.

These ones are KILLING me, I need this one:
- Feliz Navidad Bichachos (click me, loling)

These eyelash pillow cases are adorable and so cheap! $6 click!

I went crazy with these.. so unnecessary, yet totally necessary.
because I ordered the covers for cheap all I had to do was head down to the basement for pillow inserts and I spent under $20 for a great gift!

Ok I would only give used pillow inserts to someone like my sisters but they're not 'used' as much as 'I have too many pillows so why not swap the cases as much as possible?!?'
New life to a sad pillow just asking to be used.

For gift giving, you can buy new inserts at stores like Wicker emporium or my go to, Amazon see pillow inserts.  

These makeup bags are ALL the rage, I'm not sure why... I mean they are cute and I love the drag string close.. but for some reason they've hit every gift guide on the internet this year.

I picked one up way before I knew they were cool so I feel super ahead of the trend.
- Drawstring makeup bag click me! $9.99

Same deal with those makeup brushes, all the rage, I haven't tried them yet but stay tuned to Instagram stories because TODAY I will be testing them for #tryitTuesday
- 10 piece Toothbrush style makeup brushes $19.99 click me!

Lets talk about face masks because who doesn't love a face mask?!
I've tried a lot but these few I feel would suit anyone and aren't too harsh on the skin.

(my goodness Sephora has a TON of mini gift sized/special gift packs for Christmas!)

GlamGlow Click $30 (this is just one option that includes that purple mask, I like the purple one because the mask colour is actually bright silver! super metallic, very in right now)

Peter Roth Cumcumber mask Click $15 (again this is just one option! they also have a nice $31 pack. I love this cucumber mask because its just cool and soothing, helps with my redness/rosacea)

Origins Drink up Click $13 (just one option! I think Origins brand is so underrated! The price is amazing and quality is great. This Drink up is SO moisturizing, sometimes I leave it on overnight.)

Face Mask, Foot Mask, Hair Mask.
Classic stocking stuffer!

Face Mask $8
Hair $6
Foot $6 (click ^)

Okie doke that's it, I really have another 25 gift guides I could publish!
back in September when everyone started posting their guides I was like "HA HA HA. ridiculous!"
but clearly that should have been me, because I love gifting and I have infinite suggestions.

Sephora also has a notice to order by December 15th to get it by the 24th so heads up if you're using their site, and check Amazons availability based on individual product.

What kind of gifts do you do??!
junky or maybe one large, I'm torn as to what to do every year!

Friday, 8 December 2017

How to take Swoon-worthy Christmas Card photos for $0...

 I don't want to throw shade at my photog friends because I absolutely LOVE professional photographers and I recommend them at every turn.

If at all possible I will schedule our family photos in the few months before Christmas so we have a nice updated picture to ship out with our holiday cards.

Unfortunately that's not always possible, due to tight holiday purse strings etc. you may find yourself wanting an updated family photo but unable to afford it. 

I have your solution!

The title says $0 because I used my iPhone and had my sister come over to be the photographer but you all know I spent on those matching pjs! lol

So that's a choice you have to make but honestly there are free ways to do the coordinated look!
Maybe the family wears all black?
Just a pop of red in a bandana?
Maybe your thing is matching slippers?
Santa hats?

You can search your house, think outside the box and pull stuff together in no time!
Maybe I've been doing this blog thing too long and I see everything as a prop, but really, I see EVERYTHING as a prop!

My first trick is work WITH the kids.
If your son is in a super silly mood and acting like a loon, go with it.

Try getting one parent to look at the cam while the other talks to the kiddies, then switch, then both lovingly look at the kids, even though you're sweating and stressed. LOL

Bottom line, work with them and try different poses/looks.

Candid is always best! in my opinion.


The lighting is best outside so if its a balmy start to winter get outside for photos ASAP.

You don't need fancy back drops!
This is my front step, yes I am crazy for Christmas décor.. but you can come use my step as your backdrop! Don't be afraid to ask a friend or neighbour.

If you can't find good décor, GREENERY.
Either your back yard or go to a park.

Bring some props, Large blankets, pillows, a few Christmas décor pieces to spread around the edges.
I always stand in my kitchen looking into the living room and scan for photo props, you probably have wayyyy more than you need.

If you can't get outside and you find the photos too dark from inside lighting don't be afraid to play around with brightness!

Grab an app like this ^ VSCO where you can adjust brightness, contrast and edit just enough until you look clear.

Search Pinterest for fun poses ^

I swear to you I edit almost none of my photos because I truly have no time but there are some cases that are straight up dire and that's when you call in the Retouch app. ^^

I don't like to promote these apps because these days people are removing everything from a dandruff flake, to entire back rounds out of photos and its crazy to me.. I just LOVE real photos, like the old fashioned kind that caught all the bits and pieces, as imperfect as they are.

but anywhoo, dire...
I'll tell you a secret I HAD to edit Nicks butt.

We ordered these Pyjamas from China and they're made really, really, small.
Like XXL was too tight on Nick and a 6T was too small for my skinny little sized 3-4 Elliott.

In all the photos of us from behind Nick had a 'Pj's too small' wedgie, so I used the retouch app and edited that out.

I think it turned out ok..
tell me you didn't notice??!
now you're all scrolling back to check out Nicks bum! LOLOL

Just keep smiling!

Grabbed that 'merry' off my fireplace!

And that's about it, obviously with littles don't dress them until the last minute..

And get all the poses you REALLY want out of the way first before the meltdowns set in.

Other than that, have fun and print at Walmart or the like for physical copies.
Maybe Vista print or similar for custom cards or even postcards?!?

so many ideas!

Throw back Thursday 2010 ^

Throw back Thursday 2011^ Holly Jolly

I want to know your photo tricks?!
Professional photos for Christmas cards?
Santa pics? (I normally send out their santa pics when in a rush)
I need some new pose ideas too!

I also heard Pat Pat is the way to go if you're looking for affordable matching outfits!
Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Gift Guide: What I actually bought my Husband...

Gift guide for him, her, them...
this is for whoever!
but what I will tell you is that this is genuinely everything I bought for my own husband, so if you're name is Nick, Holly's husband, GTFO of here!

*This post contains affiliate links

Gift guides, a tad late and a dollar short am I right?!
I am right on time because I didn't want to just create an image with online photos, I wanted to physically have all this stuff in my possession and say:

So let's do this!
(Elliott always says that so I say it in his voice in my head "Let's do dis!" clenching fist)

I am trying something a tad new.
I am actually trying.

Up until this point I've really relied on my humour and a prayer to get people to read the blog.
I wanted to form a genuine connection to my readers and not push picture perfect posts..
which may get you a ton of clicks but (in my opinion) get repetitive.
Plus I couldn't be that person if I tried, I am too messy. (and ramble-y)

SO, here I am with some gift guide graphics and I'm questioning who I even am right now LOL
but being a 'share what I like, not what I know' blogger doesn't mean I can't be a bit fancy or professional (if you will) from time to time.

In full disclosure there may be some affiliate links coming to the blog now and then, I think its only fair that you allow that and I'll allow myself the freedom to still spew messy posts and my non grammar everywhere. (someone has GOT to fund Face Mask Friday people...)

Without further ado, I bought all of these items for Nicky Bear (long story) & they will be wrapped under my tree hopefully by December 24th...

1.Storm Bottle  (not exact one I purchased but closest I could find)
2.Pop Sockets  (this is where I got the one for my phone but if you search you can find cheaper!)
3.Transformers Shirt Batman Shirt
4. Transformers Shirt
5. Holiday Shirt (ironman)
6. Boxer Briefs!
7. Captain America Shirt
8. Sunglasses (on sale!)

Nicks Birthday is super close to Christmas so my first thought every year is 'ugh'.
Its really hard buying for him and then all of a sudden its back to back.

We are planning a trip down south in the spring so I went with a pair of sunglasses but trust me, it's not easy buying glasses for someone else - get a gift receipt.

Walmart has SO. MANY. graphic t's!!!!
I tried to link some, I couldn't find them all online but I promise in store they will have so many you won't know which ones to pick. (that's what happened to me anyway, just when you've picked a batman shirt you see it in another fabric and are like "da fug"?!)

Its super easy to get matching family outfits!
Scratch that.. coordinating!

which is even better and I completely forgot to look for myself and Noelle while there, so I need to see if they have ladies Captain America.. or I can purchase a men's and wear as is, or slice and dice a little rough edge like my 'ol pub crawl days.


A storm bottle predicts the weather..
have you heard of these?
No, me either.
google them!

It just randomly popped up on my radar and I was like yup Nick would like that.
interesting, weird, planet earth nature-y.
and cheap, lol.


People still ask me what's on the back of my phone.

They are the perfect stocking stuffer, they help your phone stand up and take strain off of your pinky finger.

Boxers and socks.
End of story.

Monday, 4 December 2017

Toofaced Melted Chocolate Lipstick Dupe...

'twas the night before gift guides...
and all through the house, Holly Housewife was stressing..
because there's just NOT enough hours in the day.
end of story.

Seriously, I just read a blog post from 2014 and I said this exact same thing..
One day you're chilling right after Halloween and the next you're starring Christmas eve down, sweating bullets trying to pull everything together.

Thankfully I have a ton of my shopping done but I am getting to the point of over shopping because I'm so unorganized.

Alas, gift guides are coming to the blog to showcase what my family and friends will be getting this year, so stay tuned!

I've been having so much fun playing with makeup on Instagram stories lately.
I am no expert but I do love beauty, especially lipstick so I was at Walmart last week and picked up a newbie thinking it was the first of its colour to be added to my collection.


^ January 2016                           ^ December 2017
(off topic but ugh what to do with my hair?!?! Whenever I see short, I want short, when I see long, I want long! Letting my brows grow in is working though! YAY)

Of course once I swatched the lipstick at home my memory was triggered and surprise! I own a shade so, so close I would go ahead and call it a dupe.

The top colour is 'Temptress' Wet ever by Hard Candy (click) approx.$7 Walmart

The Bottom is 'Chocolate Cherries' Melted liquid lipstick Too Faced (click) $25 Sephora

Sadly Chocolate cherries was a limited edition shade so I can't link to that exact colour however, I feel like that's an even better reason to share an affordable dupe!

I divided my pout and did a lipstick on each side, I don't think anyone would question a thing.
The shade match is near identical!

Just wearing the less expensive Hard Candy ^

Hard Candy vs TooFaced

Final thoughts, the Toofaced is a tad more matte and solid in appearance but the Hard Candy claims to be a gloss hybrid so I'm not surprised it looks, feels and has a tiny bit of glossy patchiness.

Overall if you're in the market for that chocolate cherries shade, at a drug store pricetag, and convenience of Walmart shopping - totally worth it!