It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas …

Around here, I try to keep the holidays in perspective. As kid winds down the aisles of stores and laundry lists all the things she “needs” or scans the pages of Amazon, making journal-sized lists of all the things she “wants” for the holidays, I put on my mom voice (it’s a cross between Charlie Brown teacher and something my mom used to throw out there) and remind her that it’s not about what we get, it’s about letting people know we appreciate them.

As luck would have it, T.J. Maxx, Marshalls and Homegoods reached out and asked me to be a part of its latest blogger challenge. The mission (as I chose to accept it): To gift a few people who need some holiday cheer. With that on our frontal lobes, kiddo and I headed off into the great holiday shopping zone to pick out presents that let those around us know we appreciate them.

First stop: T.J. Maxx to pick up a little something for my favorite babysitter. I scored cute monogrammed stationary, a candle and sachet for her lingerie drawer. Or, as I like to call them, perfect girly essentials.

Next stop: HomeGoods, where I snagged two boxes of homemade chocolates for Milly’s first grade teachers. Nothing says thank you for teaching my kid how to do math like chocolate carmels with sea salt.

Final stop: Marshalls, where I raided the beauty aisle and scored bath products for my Pilates instructor. She spends a big portion of her day teaching us interesting new ways to sweat, so I thought a nice bath bouquet would make her feel like new.

Plus, I had enough left over to pick up a few toys to donate to my local Christmas drive.

To help get you into the holiday spirit, I’m encouraging you to share your personal favorite T.J. Maxx, Marshalls and HomeGoods holiday gift find on social media using the hashtag #bestgiftever. I’ll pick one winner on December 23 to receive a $100 gift card.

Good luck and happy holidays.