Hold Up… St. Nicholas Day Isn’t Christmas?

Hold Up… St. Nicholas Day Isn’t Christmas?

St. Nicholas Day

We’re obsessed with Elf on the Shelf to the point that we have a Facebook Group dedicated to it. [Join HERE] It’s been fun connecting with people we may never have met otherwise, sharing pictures, asking questions, getting ideas and even asking for help in a last-minute situation of “I forgot to move that creepy freaking elf AGAIN” that seems to happen to all of us at one point or another. Or more. Okay, okay. LOTS!

Within this group, we’re all getting to know each other through comments and personal posts. Most of the talk is Elf-related (duh) but an update from our new friend Tiffany completely threw us. She was talking about stockings and tangerines and the fact that St. Nick was showing up on December 6th.

Um…imsorryididnthearthatgibberish. What?

Of course we had to ask. We can’t let anything go. Like, ever.

She did.

Stocking night has become a tradition of ours. It is called Saint Nicholas Eve.

In Holland they would leave their shoes outside of the door and elves would fill them with little trinkets and tangerines. I use this as an opportunity to obtain my son’s Christmas list (so it never goes into a random mailbox for me never to know what is on it!). Every Dec 6th, as a family, we do a craft and our Christmas list like a snowflake. Before bed, we place the lists in our stockings and wake up to a stocking full of trinkets and a tangerine (Mommy & Daddy get a tangerine- no trinkets. The lists are, of course, gone because the elves brought them back to Santa at The North Pole.

We have celebrated stocking night since my son’s first Christmas and when we got our elf in 2011 we incorporated him Into the tradition. When my youngest wakes up in the morning, not only are there treats in the stockings, but the house (typically the living room) is trashed! On stocking night Duckie ( our Elf) gets to hang out with his friends and they have a big party!!! Typically, the tree is toilet papered and other things in the room are too. It is always the most memorable Elf on the Shelf day! This is definitely our favorite family tradition!


Okay, this is a pretty cool tradition.

The Low-Down on ol’ St. Nick and why this day exists:

During a time of severe persecution of Christians, this devout believer, a man of means, offered monies and gifts to those in need. Legend has it that he secretly gave bags of gold to three sisters, whose father was too poor to pay a dowry for them to marry. St. Nicholas supposedly pitched the bags through an open window, where they were said to land in the maidens’ shoes, hanging by the fireplace to dry. (source: Yahoo)

Tonight, if you can race through the house, here’s what happens

On the eve of December 5th, children set out their shoes – near their bedroom door or the chimney – in hopes of receiving a small gift or treat. If they’ve been good they will receive a little surprise on the morning of December 6th. If they’ve been naughty all they’ll find is a lump or two of coal.

Do you celebrate this day?

tawsha connell



Thank you for the email, Tiffany. You’ve opened our eyes to a really cool tradition. We’re grateful to know you.

Christmas cards the QUICK and EASY way

Christmas cards the QUICK and EASY way

Christmas cards the quick and easy way


If you are thinking about sending Christmas cards this year, well, bless you. You are in the minority and are single-handedly keeping the act of personal connection alive. Yay 1950’s!

Aside from getting cards, writing in them, sealing the envelopes and driving the giant pile to the *gasp* post office; what’s the most tedious part of sending cards? GATHERING THOSE FREAKING ADDRESSES!

Think about this for a second: When was the last time you sent snail mail to your second cousin or that aunt who lives in…wait…where did she move to? Do they winter in Florida or was that just last year?

See? It’s a pain.

Postable, friends. Go with Postable.

Almost since their launch, we have been using Postable and it’s insanely easy. Seeing the growth and how much the site helps our fellow busy people makes us a teensy bit proud.

No, we aren’t being paid to write any of this.

Postable Address Book


You create a free account where you can act as a person, a couple or a business.

Once you’re in, you may import any addresses you have, enter them manually or just send your account link and everyone can enter their OWN mailing address. This means NO. WORK. FOR. YOU.

Your friends and family will receive your link, click and then enter their address. All of your addresses will go into one place – in your account.

Check it out.

This is what your friends and family will see when you send them your link (this is ours)



When it comes time to send those holiday cards, you’ll have everything in one place. Did someone forget to enter their address? This means no card for them. See? It’s not your fault. Lezzzzbehonest… you haven’t talked to them in years anyway.


digital christmas cards postable


Oh, but wait. What if you don’t have your cards already?

Turns out, Postable has cards you can fill out online and have sent to the homes of your friends and family. What’s more? You can fill out just one message and have them sent to everyone.


postable christmas cards


It’s looking like my family just MAY get a card from ours this holiday season.

This is too easy. Too freaking easy.

We’re in love.

tawsha connell

Christmas card photo credit: Lauren Manning via photopin cc

Shop Small: The Most Recommended Online Shops

Shop Small: The Most Recommended Online Shops

Small Business Saturday | Shop Small | organized CHAOS online | Recommended Businesses

Small Business Saturday is one of the coolest ideas that has taken too long to catch on. Let’s put a little hustle in this movement, shall we? So many creative and driven people are running their own businesses from online boutiques to Etsy shops to actual “brick and mortar” locations. The amount of work and sacrifice that goes into starting a small business is something nobody can plan for. It’s intense and a lot of stress. But the moment you make your first sale, or the day you connect with your first customer, it makes all your hard work worth it. To think that someone in the world came to your business and spent money they earned on something you’re offering, something that you love and feel passionate about – the feeling is immeasurable.

Not all of us were born with the entrepreneurial spirit. But most of us were born with the shopping one!

This is where organizedCHAOSonline steps up. It’s our job, dear shopping obsessed friends, to support these businesses on Saturday, November 30th, and on into the future.

What started back in 2010 by American Express to shine a spotlight on small and local businesses, has turned into a nationally observed holiday where we shop the passions of our peers. It is officially called “Small Business Saturday.”

Throw it out on social media, and you’ll see that you’re not the only one tweeting, posting on Facebook and even promoting in your Instagram feed with the hashtag #SmallBusinessSaturday.

Where should you shop?

Thanks for asking. Here’s our list of businesses you’ll want to shop this Small Business Saturday as recommended by the people we trust the most -YOU! The more this post gets shared, the more people will hear about these businesses. Click the share buttons below to help promote these hard-working businesses!

Start shopping!!



Custom Apparel

Rhinestone Sash: http://www.rhinestonesash.com/

  • Custom rhinestone sashes, shirts, etc for any occasion


Invitations and Papercraft

Pretty Pink Posh: http://prettypinkposh.com/prettypinkposhshop

  • Embellishments for crafting projects

Stephanie Creekmurhttp://www.stephaniecreekmur.com/

  • Online stationery boutique and graphic design studio[


Bags, Clutches, Purses

Grandma’s Little Lilly: http://www.etsy.com/shop/GrandmasLittleLilly

  • Coupon Organizers, EReader Cases, iphone wallets

Hayden J: http://www.etsy.com/shop/HaydenJ

  • Handcrafted bags, totes, clutches, etc.


Art, Illustrations, Prints & Photography

Charlie Duncan Photographyhttp://www.cduncanphoto.com/

  • From portraits, to product shots, fine art for your walls, to mentoring

Otturatore Photography: http://otturatorephotography.com/

  • Specializing in newborn, children, and seniors and family photography

Flapper Doodle: http://www.etsy.com/shop/flapperdoodle

  • Illustrations of 1920’s flappers Eloise and Ramona, assorted illustrated goodies

I Love It All: http://www.etsy.com/shop/iloveitall

  • Subway art prints, posters, mini books, journals, greeting cards

Eryn Marie Designshttps://www.facebook.com/ErynMarieDesigns

  • Decorative murals, hand painted furnishings and custom murals



Hardwear Designs: http://www.etsy.com/shop/hardweardesigns

  • Mixed media jewelry and art

Bookity: http://www.etsy.com/shop/Bookity

  • Handmade Map and Book Cufflinks, Jewellery, and Decor

Olive Yewhttps://www.oliveyew.com/

  • Handmade trendy gold jewelry. Simple designs.

Lavalake: http://www.etsy.com/shop/lavalake

  • Artisan jewelry

The Noisy Cricket: http://www.etsy.com/shop/noisycricket

  • Personalized hand stamped sterling jewelry


Mens/Womens Clothing

Morton James Boutique: https://www.facebook.com/MortonJames

  • Well curated mens and womens clothing and accessories
well curated clothing and accessories
well curated clothing and accessories


Children’s Clothing and Toys

bChildrenswear: http://www.etsy.com/shop/bchildrenswear

  • Modern clothing for your little one

Addison Renee Boutiquehttp://www.etsy.com/shop/addisonrenee

  • Hair bows and a new line of boy accessories


Fitness, Health & Beauty

Nerium with Terri Yankovichhttp://www.nerium.com/default.aspx?ID=terriyankovich

  • Skincare products


Housewares, Home Decor and Gifts

Oh Little Rabbit: http://www.etsy.com/shop/ohlittlerabbit

  • Eco Friendly, Organic, Hand Printed Housewares & Gifts

Printing Grounds: http://www.etsy.com/shop/flapperdoodle

  • Handcrafted wares for you and your home

re.Served by Victoria: http://www.etsy.com/shop/reServedbyvictoria

  • Reclaimed serving and home decor pieces customized with hand-drawn updates

Tennessee Sweet Tea Creations:https://www.facebook.com/TennesseeSweetTeaCreations

  • Handcrafted home decor

Aedriel Originalshttp://www.aedrieloriginals.com/

  • Distinctive tableware and earthenware home accents



B is for Buttons: http://www.etsy.com/shop/Bisforbuttons

  • Original buttons for all occasions, or make your own

Sisters Whimzyhttp://www.sisterswhimzy.com/

  • Totes, bags, trunksters and other fun things. Will personalize.

C Jayne Teachhttp://www.etsy.com/shop/cjayneteach

  • Organizational products for classrooms and educators

Flow Yoga Designshttp://www.etsy.com/shop/FlowYogaDesigns

  • Hand painted yoga mats and products all inspired by yoga

Haus of Ariella: http://www.etsy.com/shop/HausofAriella

  • Jewelry, photography, home decor


Events and Party Supplies

Oh Goodie Designshttp://www.ohgoodiedesigns.com/

  • Custom party products. Event consulting and coordinating company


Giving Back, Nonprofit, Feel Good Shopping

Art to Aidhttp://www.arttoaid.com/

  • Artists of all kinds donating profits from art sales for charities you nominate


patti and tawsha

FREE Black Friday Shopping App. So Organized!

FREE Black Friday Shopping App. So Organized!

black friday app tgibf

Dare I say there’s a little sanity in Black Friday? This free app will give you a list of all the stores in our area, all coupons and ads available, let you search by category and even save your list so you don’t have to lug around all the ads. This is go-time and we have zero leeway to mess around.

It’s coupon clipping and shopping organization in one. Be still my heart.

The app is available on iTunes and for Android

Oh, and P.S. the app lists online resources like Amazon.

Click on the above links and get to planning!

tawsha connell

Free Printable: The Thanksgiving Plan

Free Printable: The Thanksgiving Plan

The Thanksgiving Plan Preview

Fail to plan, plan to fail. Sure, it may be a motto for many things but it’s something that should be chanted as we enter the holidays. Especially Thanksgiving. Lists are key, math does play a part in what you serve and careful pre-planning will make your day so much easier.


One year, my mom was hosting Thanksgiving dinner for our immediate family, their family and guests of those who were single. With about 25 people in the house, several of us were running around the kitchen with purpose. The pressure to serve an incredible meal was on. A couple of the guests were the type of women who tend to do everything right in the kitchen. You know those type? They can just “whip up” something and it looks like a magazine feature. Why didn’t we ask them to cook? Hindsight is 20/20.

The final stages of meal prep were coming to a close and my aunt was making gravy… from scratch. She was stirring and stirring, adding more ingredients and then stirring again. The freaking gravy would NOT thicken up. So, as one of the perfect cooks went to her car to grab something (I was praying it was a meal), my aunt tossed the runny gravy down the drain, grabbed a can of pre-made gravy, dumped it into the bowl and started stirring by the time the woman made it back into the kitchen.


We planned ahead.

The gravy was excellent.


  • How many guests are you expecting?
  • Who is bringing what?
  • Do you have the meal planned out?
  • How does your grocery list look?

We’ve created thirteen pages of list-type organization for Thanksgiving dinner. Yes, we said THIRTEEN pages to keep you on track and always one step ahead.

Thanskgiving Plan Worksheets[ddownload id=12000]

It’s all free and it’s ready for download. Go for it!

tawsha connell