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Mo On The Go

#FiveWeeWays to Get Holiday Ready

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The holidays are quickly approaching so before you get wrapped up in the chaos keep these simple yet AH-mazing tips handy! For most, the holidays include travel, entertaining, shopping, kids and lots and lots of photos, so these tips focus on these key areas. As many have a tablet, or may be considering asking for one this Holiday season, I’ve also included a Tablet Trick for each. You won’t believe how you can use your tablet to help your survive and enjoy the holidays.

 

 

 

Holiday Tip #1 - Travel Tricks

Holidays for many means travel. My first essential travel item is a tablet – it’s a great way to stay organized on the go, plus, when you’re on those long car rides or waiting for your flight, you can give it to your kids to watch, surf, read or play. If you are considering a new tablet for yourself or you kids the Windows HP Stream 7 tablet is small, lightweight, and has a long battery life. You have access to thousands of games and creative apps through the Windows Store, plus all of your favourite apps for reading, watching movies, listening to music and staying connected to friends. Before you travel with your tablet the first photo you should take is a selfie. If you lose the tablet you can prove it is yours by showing the photo. The second photo you should remember to take is of the parking level and space where you have parked, especially at the airport. After a week or two away there is a very good chance you will have forgotten. Pack a plastic sandwich bag to keep it dry and, if you’re headed to a sunny destination, sand-free. The touch screen will work through the plastic and the bag can also be used to hang the tablet from the tray table in front of you on airplanes.

Next, Packing. No matter where you are off to, the best way to pack is to use a hanging cubby. Pack your daily outfits in each section, then place the folding cubby into your suitcase. When you arrive at your destination simply pull out the cubby and hang it in the closet.

Holiday Tip 2 - Shopping Stash

If you are like my mother then you finished your holiday shopping in August. If you are like me then you haven’t even started! Each year, I do more and more of my holiday shopping from the comfort of my PJs in bed with a glass of wine. Not only do I stay focused on the items I planned to buy on my list, but I can easily compare prices. More retailers are offering free shipping too. Once your packages start arriving at your doorstep - just another plus to shopping online - then your next challenge is to hide all of those presents where snooping kids won’t find them. I have a fantastic solution that is two solutions in one! Get a big box and wrap it, but before you close it up place the presents inside, then close it up and put it under the tree! Hiding all the gifts in plain sight! Brilliant right?! After you open the big box on Christmas Eve and place all the individual gifts under the tree you can use the big beautifully wrapped box for the garbage wrapping paper, keeping ugly garbage bags out of your holiday photos.

 

Holiday Tip #3 - Engaging Entertaining

Just the thought of holiday entertaining will send many into panic mode. But fear not, this winter make entertaining engaging, have a “Cookies & Coco” party. As guests arrive they can help themselves to a cup of coco which you have already made and is being kept warm in your crock-pot. Wow your guest by offering a whipped cream Christmas tree on top by simply freezing a tray of whipped cream and cutting out Christmas shapes with cookie cutters. What goes best with coco? Cookies of course, especially cookies decorated by your guests! Bake or buy plain sugar cookies and then have an area set up for them to decorate their cookies. Keep the icing mess to a minimum by putting the icing in condiment bottles and placing small bowls of sprinkles. Nothing sets the mood for a holiday party like the playlist, but if you are like me finding the time to make a holiday playlist is NEVER going to happen. Apps like Songza that you can download from the Windows Store for free, have fabulous playlists for every occasion, mood and genre of music. I even have my favourite playlists for cleaning my house before guests arrive...whatever it takes to get it done!

Holiday Tip #4 - Busy Kids

Everything old is new again, My Little Ponies, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and even the game of Life all have a new generation adding them to their letters to Santa. The new way to play those old school board games is on your tablet. No more lugging boxes or losing pieces, everything you need to play is in the app. It also solves the ongoing issue of one tablet and many kids. These apps allow for multiple players and hours of family fun. Our family loves playing Scrabble, Catan, and my son loves Age of Empires: Castle Siege, Halo: Spartan Assault and FIFA15: Ultimate Team. Another classic that is great fun for wee ones over the holidays, is candy cane play dough. For your own kids, as gifts or if you have friends or family coming over for the holidays, this recipe will be a huge hit. Package it up in a mason jar for gifts. 

Holiday Tip #5 - Photo Fun

If there is one sure thing over the holidays, it is that there will be many moments that you will want to capture. My favourite photo app is Instagram but also be sure to find an app to add copy, make a collage, add filters like snow or boarders. There are also apps to print books from your photos which make great gifts. Your tablet also makes a perfect digital picture frame and can become part of your holiday decor! Simply glue three candy canes together to form a based to set your tablet on and place it on a table so that your family and friends can enjoy your photos. You can also set it up to work as a photo booth, capturing the good, the bad, and the ugly Christmas sweaters for hours of fun of easily posting them to Facebook and Twitter!

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