7 (+1) Awesome Halloween Gifts for Tweens

Somewhere between the age of 10 and 11, something magical happens - your "little one" grows up and no longer goes trick or treating with a chaperone.  They may opt for the more grown up "party" at a friends house, or stick with handing out candy at good ol' mom and dads and scare a few mini monsters.

This time of their lives doesn't preclude them from still getting a few "treats" in their lives, so I have put together a quick list of gift ideas, perfect for your maturing ghouls and ghosts, who may still, deep down inside, want to celebrate with their parents.

1.  Rainbow Edge Stix Blendable Hair Chalk  - No need to bargain with your tween about permanent dyes - they can color their hair with these chalks, that are almost like crayons for the night, and then wash out with regular shampoo.  Even works great with darker hair (like my daughter's).

2.  Essie Nail Color in Leggie Legend - this PSL (Pumpkin Spice Latte) knock-off color will help your tween stay in the spirit of the holiday without going cliche with basic orange and black. A little shimmer and a whole lot of bronze help this 2015 collection favorite be a new favorite in your house.  Don't worry, I won't tell if you sneak some of it, too!

3.  Scary Stories to Tell In the Dark Boxed Set - Who doesn't like a scary story on Halloween?  This book set is great for tweens as there is a story for everyone to enjoy.  I remember reading these exact stories when I was younger, and boy would they give me the chills.  Still, it is a great series for this age range - they certainly are not being exposed to Stephen King novels.

4. I <3 The Dark Side Pin - Support your inner Star Wars geek with this little button.  If you have a tween who is against wearing a costume, or just wants to go "undercover" this year, this little button is perfect for them to show their Empire pride, even if its only for one day of the year.  We all know they are really a Jedi deep down inside.

5.  I'm A Ninja T-Shirt - if your tween insists on going "incognito" for the festivities, help them out with this invisibility shirt, sure to divert any attention away from them.  Throw in a black mask and you have yourself a fun costume.  Bonus points if your tween knows some moves.

6.  Wonder Woman Caped Knee Socks - You might be fortunate to have your very own super hero living under your roof.  But capes may have been banned after that unfortunate scene in the Incredibles a few years back (you know, this one).  These mini capes may still meet regulations of super heroes, so give your wonder woman the lift she needs with these ultra cute knee socks.

7.  Jack Skellington Moccasin Slippers - For your ghoul who is staying in for the evening, these cozy slippers will keep their toes warm while they continually open doors for princesses, pirates and Doc McStuffins.  Throw on the movie in the background and your tween will sure have a great time viewing all the younger folks in their costumes. They might even remember all the different ones they wore in previous years and appreciate all the hard work you put in each year.  Or maybe they'll just watch the movie.

If you still want more gift ideas for your favorite tween in your life, you can always buy an extra bag of their favorite Halloween Candy, and let them gorge themselves, even if they didn't earn it the hard way, by saying:

Trick or Treat!

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13 Years and Stronger than Ever

Today marks Kevin's and I's 13th wedding anniversary.  Many would say thirteen is an unlucky number, but in fact, it has proved us completely lucky over the years.  In fact, we were married on the thirteenth of October - a date known to have the most Friday the Thirteenths in history.

In honor of our thirteen years of stubbornly staying together, through thick and thin, I bring you:

7 Questions to Ask Before You Geo-Bachelor

I often get asked the question, "what made you decide to stay behind?"  I typically laugh, because, well, its a loaded question.  I can't say there was one thing that truly made my family and I decide that by staying behind, it would be better for us.

But there are definitely conversations or decisions you can have to help your family decide if you should go "full geo" - or geo-bachelor - families separated by distance, not by love.

The Toddler Years (Part Duex)

I'm going to go out on a limb here and proclaim that I am sorry.  I am sorry for taking pity on you and your toddler.  Instead, I now envy you.

You may not realize it, but as I have perused through the aisles at Target, I have seen your toddlers throw themselves on the floor over wanting a stick of cheese. I have watched as you plead, beg, and negotiate with your little terrorist whose demands are making you look like a fool.  Through all your horror and desperation, I've seen you look at me with a glimmer of hope still in your eye, as I pass you by.

Yes, there is hope.  You've seen my daughter pushing the cart next to me, sipping on a Starbucks drink, and carrying on a conversation about her latest crush at school.  Truly, every time I pass by a mother with little ones, I thank my lucky stars every day that my little one grew out of that stage.  Thank God, those two years are a distant memory.

MilCents: Find Your Financial Freedom

I will be the first to admit I can easily blow $100 at Target and forget the one thing I went in for. Costco? Try $200. I get too many projects off Pinterest and White Walls that take me down rabbit holes of impulsive shopping sprees.

When my husband met me, my finances were a mess.  Our agreement was he would take over and help right my wrongs and I would stop being so impulsive. We've both held up our ends of the arrangement, him better than I at times (there's still that darn Target store that eats me alive...)

Why am I confessing such financial sins for all internet onlookers to see and judge?