20 Fun Father’s Day Ideas: Gifts of Experience

Father’s Day is almost here! Are you ready? Most of us are not. Father’s Day always seems to sneak up on us in the shadow of Memorial weekend, graduations, the end of school, and the start of summer. Somehow it seems Dad’s day doesn’t have quite the same commanding presence as Mother’s Day. What’s up with that? Dad is just as loved and just as important, and thankfully the time is almost here to show him.

You did get Dad a gift, didn’t you? Oh, you didn’t? That’s okay – we have some ideas to help you along.

Continue reading 20 Fun Father’s Day Ideas: Gifts of Experience

Polaroid Zip Zink® Instant Printer Review

When welcoming a new baby into the family on the earliest days at the hospital, family members and close friends often come to meet the little one and share in the joy. This is a special time to capture these early moments in a format that can be treasured forever. The Polaroid Zip Zink® Instant Printer offers a quick and easy way to share hard copies of photos immediately with your visitors, printing out digital images sent via Bluetooth on a smartphone to the printer itself. Continue reading Polaroid Zip Zink® Instant Printer Review

Baby Preparation Checklist

bellypicFor many women, finding out that they have a little one on the way is the best news they could ever imagine receiving. However, once the news has sunk in, a period of panic often sets in, as the parents-to-be start to fret about the many items they will need to purchase ready for the arrival of the baby.

The first thing to remember when you find out you are having a baby is that you have quite a few months left, so there is plenty of time to buy baby items on a gradual basis. In fact, the first thing you will need to buy is not actually for the baby but for the mother, in the form of appropriate clothing. By finding cheap maternity clothes, you can make sure you are comfortable throughout your pregnancy without blowing the money you will need for baby.

Items you will need to save for before the baby arrives

Once you have sorted out your maternity clothing, you can start thinking about the items you need to start saving for in preparation for baby’s arrival. Some new parents get carried away and want to buy everything they can think of before the baby comes, but to start off with, just focus on the essentials. This includes:

A quality pram: You should never cut corners when it comes to buying a pram, as you need one that is safe and sturdy. Prams can be quite expensive, but shop around and try and get a good deal on a quality pram rather than buying a cheap pram that may not be as sturdy as it should be.

A cot: Again, this is something you should put some research into, as you need to go for something that offers quality and comfort for your baby. If you are able to, it is worth waiting until there are sales on to try and save money on this.

A car seat: You need to invest in a sturdy, high quality car seat before your baby is born and get this fitted into your vehicle. This is another item that will need to be of high quality, so make sure you opt for a reputable brand and look at reviews to ensure that it is as sturdy as it should be for your baby.

Clothes: Don’t be tempted to buy your baby a whole new wardrobe of clothes before he or she even comes along – there will be plenty of time for that later on. However, make sure you have some basics ready for when the baby is born.

Feeding formula and bottles: You will need to purchase your formula, bottles and steriliser ready for feeding your baby when you come home from hospital. If you are planning to breastfeed, invest in some comfortable nursing bras.

Toiletries: Make sure you have essential toiletries ready for your baby’s arrival. This includes nappies, skin cream, cotton wool, baby lotion, and baby wipes, amongst other things.

These are some of the essential items you will need to get before your baby comes along. Remember, you may not have to purchase everything from new, as you may have friends or family members who are able to give you hand-me-downs that are still in good condition.

A Look at the Acase Black Diamond III Bluetooth Speaker by Yantouch

Black Diamond III Bluetooth Speaker Product Review

Sometimes you just don’t know what to get someone for Christmas, birthday, or any other special occasion. Some people are just too difficult to shop for, no matter what the occasion. Thankfully, every once in a while, a special gift item comes out on the market, making it so much easier to check those people off your shopping list. I found Acase’s Black Diamond III Bluetooth Speaker by Yantouch to be the perfect item to fit the bill.

I originally purchased one of these for my brother’s Christmas present when I first learned of these cool music gadgets that interact with your smartphone. More recently, I received one of my own from the company to test and check out for the purpose of this review. The Bluetooth speaker actually lights up with ambient lighting or pulses to the beat of the music—totally too cool to let it pass you by. The Black Diamond III comes with a small remote controller that fits sleekly into a tiny opening in the back of the speaker. Use this remote to change the music, volume, and light settings.

The BlackDiamond 3 (BD3) by Yantouch, introduced by Acase, sparkles and shines just like its namesake, and creates the ideal mood for any setting and any mood you choose. Play some pulsating music like Schism by TOOL and enjoy the “music you can see” as the speaker syncs with the tempo, or play something more melodic and easy going like David Gray’s Sail Away for a relaxing light show of the flowing style of music.

The speaker is shaped like a diamond; its base is black and the upper half is angled and faceted with bright LED lighting inside. The construction is sturdy yet sleek, and this item looks and feels of great quality. The bottom of the speaker features two clear left/right 3Wx2 stereo speakers as well as a resonant bass tube. Visually, the speaker is capable of displaying up to 16,000,000 colors according to product documentation (Are our eyes even capable of seeing this many shades?? Wow!).

BD3 also features a buiGifts for dads and grads, ambient lighting bluetooth speakerlt-in equalizer for improving audio response and the ability to choose multi-color special effects, like Rainbow, Aurora, or Purple. We tested our Android smartphones and found the speaker very convenient to pair with our devices. (The Bluetooth is auto-pairing and auto-linking and works without the need for a password.) YouTube, Pandora, and even cell phone conversations transmit easily and quickly over the Bluetooth speaker. (So be sure you aren’t paired if you hope to have a private conversation!) As a totally separate perk, it’s a very cool feature to try if you want to do a family conference call when many members are in the same location as the speaker.

Compatible with all Bluetooth devices, the BD3 speaker worked wonderfully with my HTC Sensation as well as my husband’s Samsung Galaxy S3. This device is outfitted with an AC adapter and a USB power cord and audio cable (combined), and though I’ve not tried it, I’ve heard that you can daisy chain the speaker so that it has even more power! Maybe not a widely known feature, but definitely worth noting!

As for the vibrant lighting show, our baby daughter loves it. She enjoys watching the colors switch through blends of millions of hues in the flowing mode as well as from one color to the next or in line with the tempo of the songs. We’ve begun using the Black Diamond III Bluetooth Speaker by Yantouch to help teach her the colors as well. By turning off the lights, the LED colors become even more vibrant and attractive, making it fun for the whole family. This item would be a great addition to any home for ambient lighting and music mood setting, but also as an attractive accent in a place of business such as a fitness studio.

The Acase Yantouch Black Diamond III Bluetooth Speaker would be the perfect gift for dads and grads this season, especially for those who never want anything special and the ones who already seem to have everything. The speaker’s MSRP is $120. You can get the speaker at http://www.apluscase.com.tw or on Amazon.com for just $99 – I paid $120 for the one I got for my brother around Christmas, so don’t miss this great deal !

Valentine’s Gifts to Daddy from his Little Girl

No bond comes close to the special relationship between a little girl and her daddy. Even from her earliest months before her first birthday, you can see the sparkle in her eyes as she looks at him or when he makes her laugh. Celebrate this special love by helping your daughter choose a Valentine’s gift for her daddy that he will cherish for years to come. Consider these Valentine’s gifts for dad from his daughter to make sure your entire family has a special time this February 14.

No matter what your budget, you can find or create lovely Valentine’s Day gifts for daddy, even at the last minute.

Valentine’s Gifts from Infant Daughter to Daddy
A little baby may not know how to gift her dad a gift this Valentine’s Day, aside from a sweet smile or a loving look, but you as mom can give her the help she needs to give dad a very special gift. Consider these Valentine’s Day gifts to dad from a baby daughter:

* Handmade Valentine – Get out the construction paper, lace, glue, paint, and glitter, and have fun. You can put your little daughter’s handprint or footprint on a paper heart and decorate it for your husband to mark your baby’s first Valentine’s Day. Don’t forget to put the date and sign her name!

* Salt Dough Handprint or Footprint in a heart – Use a basic salt dough recipe and a large heart cookie cutter (or carve a heart with a dull knife). Gently press your baby’s handprint or footprint into the dough and use a toothpick or other small implement to add her name and the date. Bake as directed. Once cooled, paint however you like and seal with Modge Podge. Consider inserting a paper clip before baking if you would like to allow your heart to hang, or leave it as is for a paperweight style heart.

Valentine’s Gifts from Toddler or Young Daughter to Daddy

Toddlers and little ones get into everything! Take advantage of that and make her daddy’s Valentine’s Day a special one with some irreplaceable memories. Here are some gift ideas from a toddler girl to her daddy on Valentine’s Day:

* Handmade Valentine – Let your daughter make her own Valentine with any craft supplies you both so desire. Help her to cut and glue, but let her design everything the way she wants it. Help her to sign her name and take a picture of her holding it up, for a special bonus to the gift.

* Make a Video – Have your daughter do something cute or funny and make a video of it on your phone or Flip Video camera. You and her daddy both will love having this special footage years from now.

* Finger Paint Picture – Let your little daughter make her daddy a picture of her choosing using a fun craft supply like finger paint. Be sure to help her sign her name.

* Cookies – What dad doesn’t love cookies? Make some homemade chocolate chip cookies or other favorites with your daughter and help her wrap them up for Dad. You may have to do most of the work, but let her add the sprinkles or sugar sparkles on top so he can see right away that she helped.


Creative Labor Day Gift Ideas

Creative Labor Day Gift IdeasWhen you go to someone’s home for a Labor Day party or picnic, it can be nice to bring along a special gift for the host and hostess. Depending on the person, you can choose something sweet and simple or you can consider a wide array of more creative Labor Day gift ideas. Whatever you decide, the sentiment is sure to be appreciated. Here are a number of creative Labor Day gifts to consider for your friends and family.

Before selecting the perfect Labor Day gift, be sure to consider your budget. You can find nice Labor Day gifts at just about any price point, so the sooner you start thinking about what to bring, the better chance you have of finding a great gift that fits into your desired budget.

Consider these creative Labor Day gift ideas:

•    A nice bottle of wine
•    Bottle of scotch
•    Box of chocolates
•    Craft beers
•    Fruit basket
•    Salty snack basket
•    Flowers in the colors of red, white, and blue
•    Grill charms (to mark whose burger or meat is whose)
•    Wine charms (likewise)
•    Scented candle (think apple pie or something festive!)

Instead of an actual Labor Day gift, you might also consider bringing something to help take away a bit of the cost burden for the family hosting the party. You can offer to bring pies, cookies, or another dessert item. You might also offer to bring a fruit salad, veggie tray, or meat and cheese platter to help prepare for guests’ arrival. If you are close with the family hosting the party, offer to arrive early to help prepare and set up. Sometimes this simple act goes far beyond the idea of a host or hostess gift.

It isn’t always necessary to bring a present for the host or hostess when you go to a party, but it is definitely a classy gesture that they are sure to appreciate. If your budget can swing it, try to take a nice creative Labor Day gift with you to the party this year.

 

Best Father’s Day Gifts for Any Dad (and Presents for Dad on Birthday, Christmas, or Other Holidays)

Forget the tired ties and aftershave. Get Dad a gift that he’s sure to love. Usually the best Father’s Day gifts are the ones that come from the heart. Consider your dad’s favorite things as you think about the best Father’s Day presents you could possibly give to show your love and appreciation for your pops.  Here are a few suggestions for Father’s Day gifts to give your dad this year.

Best Father’s Day Gifts for the Outdoorsman
Lots of fathers enjoy time outside, whether hunting, fishing, camping, hiking, playing sports, or another outdoor activity. Consider these best gifts for Father’s Day for the athletic or outdoorsman type dad.

–    Camping Gear – a new tent, fancy lanterns, cool camping gadgets, camping cooler, camping utensils, and more

–    Fishing Gear – a new fishing pole, tackle box, bait and lures, mounted prize fish, waders or boots, fishing net, fish finder watch, or other fishing gadgets and gear

–    Hunting Gear – new camouflage gear, hats and gloves, animal calls, targets, arrows or bullets, or a gift certificate to his favorite hunting shop

–    Sports Equipment – a new football, baseball glove, soccer ball, volleyball, workout clothing, runner’s watch, new running shoes, hockey stick, rollerblades, ice skates, or any number of other cool sporting goods

Best Father’s Day Gifts for the Techie Dad
Tech savvy dads will love gifts of gadgets and electronics above most else. Consider these suggestions for best gift ideas for techie dads.

–    Digital Camera or Video Camera – consider some of the top models in digital cameras and digital video cameras, including Panasonic Lumix DMC-FH20K 14.1 MP Digital Camera, Canon PowerShot A3000IS 10 MP Digital Camera, Flip UltraHD Video Camera, Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX5V 10.2MP, Canon PowerShot ELPH, or Canon SX30IS 14.1MP Digital Camera.

–    iPod Touch – any dad who loves music and gadgets will love an iPod Touch or other iPod device that fits within your budget.

–    GPS System – consider the wildly popular Garmin nüvi devices, TomTom XXL, and even the GPS watches like Garmin Forerunner 305 GPS Receiver With Heart Rate Monitor.

–    Kindle Reading Device – help dad read inside or outside with ease using Amazon’s Kindle, a bestseller on Amazon.com.

–    Mobile Phone – upgrade Dad’s cell phone with a cool new Android device!

–    Netbook or other Laptop – Dad will love the ability to surf the Web or do other tasks on the fly with a new Netbook or other cool laptop model.

–    Video Game System or Blu-ray / DVD Player – What Dad doesn’t love video games and movies? Consider getting Dad a Roku XDS Streaming Player so he can watch movies on TV, streamed from the Internet. You might also like the Panasonic DMP-BDT210 Integrated-Wi-Fi 3D Blu-ray DVD Player, Sony DVP-SR200P/B DVD Player, LG BD630 Network Blu-ray Disc Player, or LG BD670 3D Wireless Network Blu-ray Disc Player with Smart TV. A Coby TFDVD7009 7-Inch Portable DVD/CD/MP3 Player is another fun option for Dad!

Best Father’s Day Gifts for the Foodie Dad
Dads who love food are sure to appreciate any number of the best Father’s Day gifts you can think of related to sweets and treats, gourmet food, cool cooking gadgets or small kitchen appliances, and even gift cards to Dad’s favorite restaurant. Here are a few ideas for presents you can buy for the foodie dad.

–    Sweets and Treatschocolate covered pretzels, Italian butter coo
kies, cheesecake, homemade cookies, chocolate chip cookies, donuts and Danish, candies or chocolates

–    Snack Gift Sets – gift sets of assorted nuts, gourmet popcorn, gift basket of salty snacks, beef jerky, or other fun snacks for Dad

–    Small Kitchen Appliances – fun gifts for the dad who likes to cook, such as quesadilla maker, popcorn popper, ice cream maker, deep fryer, sandwich press, George Foreman grill, Belgian waffle iron, breakfast sandwich toaster, or other fun kitchen gadgets

–    Gourmet Food Clubs – get Dad a membership to a gourmet food club that he would love, like hot sauce of the month, jam or jelly of the month, cookie of the month, fruit of the month, spice of the month, and so many others

–    Gift Cards to Restaurants – pick Dad’s favorite place and set him up for a free meal. Consider steakhouses, Brazilian Barbecue restaurants, seafood places, buffet style restaurants, and others

Best Father’s Day Gifts for the Traveler
Gifts for dads who enjoy traveling are available across a wide spectrum. Here are a few ideas for the best travel themed gifts.

–    New Luggage – get Dad a new set of luggage, or a single piece such as a laptop bag, carryon bag, toiletries storage bag, or other fun luggage item.

–    Travel Pillow – find a nice travel pillow for Dad so he can sleep on the plane!

–    Gift Certificates for Travel – consider airline gift cards, hotel stays, cruises, bed and breakfast stays, and more

Best Father’s Day Gifts for Any Dad
Sometimes it seems like Dad has everything. Other times it may seem completely impossible to shop for him for one reason or another. Sometimes the gift of experience can be the best gift of all, as long as you are able to spend time with your dad. Consider these ideas for the best Father’s Day gifts of experience.

–    Brewery Tour – Take Dad on a tour and tasting for a nearby brewery. You can also check for distilleries and wineries, depending on your dad’s tastes.

–    Fishing Trip – Rent a boat or get on a charter or party boat and take Dad out to catch Big Charlie.

–    Tee Time – Take your dad out for some chip ‘n putt, miniature golf, or even a few rounds at your local golf course.

These are just a few suggestions for the best Father’s Day gifts you should consider for your Dad based on his particular interests and hobbies. If you have other ideas for great gifts for dads, for Father’s Day or even Christmas, birthday, or another holiday, please leave your suggestions in our comments below.

 

20 Last-Minute Valentine’s Day Gift Ideas

Sometimes it just isn’t possible to plan for a holiday in advance. Work, travel, health, family, or any other number of things can get in the way, preventing even the best of intentions. You can still save your Valentine’s heart with a last-minute gift idea that shows you really care. Here are 20 last-minute Valentine’s Day gift ideas for the last-minute shopper.

The romantic Valentine’s Day gift you choose can be as sweet as candy or as sentimental as something you create yourself. When time is of the essence, choosing a gift for your lover at the last-minute can be stressful, to say the least. Take the stress out of your Valentine’s Day by looking at quick-delivery gift options and vendors online who can help save the day, whether you forgot a gift or simply didn’t know what to buy. Choose from pajama-grams, flowers, chocolates, and of course, delicious and decadent chocolate-covered berries, a romantic gift for guys and girls to love!

20 Last-Minute Valentine’s Day Gift Ideas for Girls

 

1.    Flowers
2.    Chocolates
3.    Perfume
4.    Lotion
5.    Bubble Bath
6.    Pajamas / Lingerie
7.    Plush Bath Robe
8.    Wine
9.    Jewelry
10.    Music CDs
11.    Movies
12.    Slippers
13.    Soft Sweater
14.    Sunglasses
15.    Designer Purse
16.    Framed Photos
17.    Artwork
18.    Candlesticks
19.    China Figurine
20.    Crystal Ring Holder

20 Last-Minute Valentine’s Day Gift Ideas for Guys

1.    Cologne
2.    Candy
3.    Leather Goods – Wallet, Belt, etc.
4.    Beer
5.    Booze
6.    Gift Cards
7.    Video Games
8.    Movies
9.    Music CDs
10.    Gadgets
11.    Electronics
12.    Sunglasses
13.    Luggage
14.    Pajama Pants
15.    Cufflinks
16.    Men’s Jewelry
17.    Golf Balls or Accessories
18.    Car Accessories
19.    Gift Cards
20.    Cigars

These are just 20 fast, last-minute gift suggestions for Valentine’s Day for your husband, wife, boyfriend, or girlfriend. Not every gift will be appropriate for each recipient, but you can use these ideas to come up with a perfect gift, even if you are just starting your shopping on February 14!

Father’s Day Gift Guide for Dads of All Ages

Is that smile on your dad’s face real or is he just pretending to like the gift you have given him? Showing your dad how much you love him is important every day of the year, but even more so on that special day of all days the world has set aside for fathers of all ages- Father’s Day. Gifts that show your appreciation and respect for your father can run the gamut from indulgent twists on necessities to sweet treats to tasty liquors to engaging books to useful, enjoyable electronics to hobby items to so much more!

While Father’s Day might have originally been intended for dads with children of their own, it has grown into a holiday that celebrates biological dads, step dads, grandfathers, and men who stand in for dads that can no longer be there. Father’s Day is also the perfect time to celebrate men who lavish their love on their pets, nephews, or nieces. Anyone who acts as a dad can be loved and honored on Father’s Day, the day for dads of all kinds and ages. Celebrate the dads in your life this Father’s Day with a thoughtful gift selection, a sentimental card, and a sweet smile!

Pampering dad is something you can do in a number of ways depending on the type of dad you have. If you want to choose the perfect gift for Father’s Day, just think about your dad, his background, his hobbies, and how much you love him. Then, check out this Father’s Day gift guide for some really unusual suggestions for pleasing dad on his special day.

SNACKS AND SWEETS

Women aren’t the only ones with a sweet tooth. Many dads have a special confectionary that they enjoy even if they can’t afford the calories. A wonderful Father’s Day gift is easily created simply by gathering a few treats together into a basket for that special man in your life.

The Vermont Country Store Orton Copper Kettle Fudge Sampler: Sweets and treats are the perfect solution for a Father’s Day gift that encourages a smile to widen into a grin. The Vermont Country Store Orton Copper Kettle Fudge Sampler offers a delightful taste of four popular flavors for dads everywhere to enjoy. Orton Copper Kettle Fudge is creamy and delicious down to the last morsel. Visit www.vermontcountrystore.com for more information or to take a look at some of their other items.

The Vermont Country Store Cookie Buttons: Whether dad drinks coffee, tea, or milk, the sweet taste of cookies is almost always a true pleasure. The Vermont Country Store Cookie Buttons offer an all-natural treat with a “purely” maple taste. Made in Vermont, Vermont Cookie Buttons are also sold in Snappy Ginger, Double Vanilla, Spicy Cinnamon, Zesty Lemon, and Peanut Butter.

That’s Caring Hard at Work Snacks and Sweets Collection: Most dads spend quite a lot of their lives hard at work so they can provide for their family. Why not show your appreciation to dad this Father’s Day with a gift choice from That’s Caring Hard at Work Snacks and Sweets Collection? The original version of the That’s Caring Hard at Work gift includes a delicious assortment of Fleur de Sel Caramel Corn, Brent & Sams Cookies in two flavors, Lake Champlain Chocolate in 2 assorted bars, Roasted Salted Cashews, and Roasted Almonds with Sea Salt- all of which is tucked into a white hard hat. This is a sweet tasting, decorative gift that should perk up any dad’s smile easily enough. This particular gift sells for $38.99, but you can check out their website, www.thatscaring.com, for other options.

SPIRITS/LIQUOR

What man doesn’t deserve…