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Christmas Game for Kids

Posted by Andie on December 24, 2015

One of my favorite childhood Christmas memories is playing 'Don't Eat Pete!'  I'm not sure where this game originated from but it's basically the best game in the whole world to a candy-loving, game-craving kid.  It's simple, really.  Here's how to play:
1. You have a sheet of paper with a bunch of elves on it, and you carefully place an m&m (we always used the red and green m&m's as a kid so I'm privy to those, but any little piece of candy will work) on each elf.  
2. Whichever child is going to go first leaves the room so that they can't hear the rest of you while you're picking one of the random elves to be 'Pete' for the round.
3. The child then comes back into the room, sits down, and starts picking up m&m's from off of the elves and popping them in their mouth.  The goal of the game is to eat as many m&m's as possible before you pick the m&m that is on Pete!  Once the child picks up the m&m that is placed on 'Pete', everyone yells at the top of their lungs "DON'T EAT PETE!!" and then the turn goes to the next child.  

It's sort of silly when you think of how little skill is involved in this game, but I promise it's a real winner!  I've spent hours of my life playing 'Don't Eat Pete' with my siblings as a kid, and now that I'm an adult I have loved introducing it to my own children.  My three year old is basically obsessed, so even if your kids are really young they are sure to love it!  You can find several pdf's of Don't Eat Pete on pinterest that you can download- here is one of the cutest ones that I saw!

Remember, DON'T EAT PETE!!!!

Merry Christmas, everyone!  Hope you have a warm, safe & happy holiday with those you love!

 

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Traveling with Kids

Posted by Andie on December 21, 2015


While traveling can be a stressful experience any time of the year, it proves to be especially nerve wracking during the holidays!  Especially with little children!  I flew alone with my 3 year old and 20 month old home to Utah for Christmas last week (lucky for him, my husband had to finish up final exams in DC before he joins us and will be flying solo).  Let me tell you, it was brutal.  No, my kids weren't monsters.  In fact, proud mom moment- they were so good!  But here's the thing- 3 airports, snowy weather, delayed flights, de-icing of planes, and 10 hours of travel is just plain exhausting, no matter how well behaved your little ones are.  

The #1 piece of advice I have for anyone venturing on a similar Christmas journey is this: PAY FOR THE DIRECT FLIGHT!  I saved quite a bit of money flying to Chicago, then to SLC, and I thought a little break might be good for my kids to wiggle and run around.... but in hindsight no amount of money saved would have been worth experiencing that day!  I definitely learned my lesson.

A few more tips I have for parents' flying with small children this time of year:

1. Pack light.  Winter clothing weighs a lot more than summer clothing, so be selective (especially when it comes to your footwear).  I'm always amazed how quickly I can cram 50 pounds into my suitcase before I've even gotten to the essentials.
2. Arrive VERY early to the airport.  You don't want to be rushed! I don't care if you're a pro at catching your flight at the last minute- everything (including security) takes 10 times longer when you are toting babies and little kids around, so make sure you plan accordingly.  
3. Check your luggage: EVERYTHING besides one large carry-on.  This includes coats.  I promise you will be so grateful you aren't hauling a bunch of crap with you through the airport.  Totally worth the extra fee your airline will most likely tack on.  
4. Rent movies on iTunes. They have rentals for 24 hours, and you can watch the movie as much as you want in that time frame!  Plus, it's only about $3.  Perfect way to add some variety to your child's movie lineup.  
5. Ditch the kid backpacks. I had to learn this the hard way.  Both of my kids have darling little backpacks for the plane that of course I ended up carrying on top of everything else!  Unless your child is old enough to wear it (and you know he/she actually WILL wear it and won't hand it to you in desperation 5 steps after you get through security), forget packing your kids their own cute bags.  
6. Take a cheap umbrella stroller.  I've taken our big double stroller and checked it at the gate before, and it's a huge hassle.  Plus, I feel like 9 times out of 10 it gets damaged!  As long as you won't need to use a really nice, large stroller once you get to your destination, just take a cheap $20 umbrella stroller. They are pretty slick when it comes to running through crowds at the airport, they take up essentially no space, and you won't be heartbroken if it gets damaged in transit.  
7. Pack about a billion snacks. You can call me a lot of things, but 'unprepared' is not one of them.  This is a picture I took of the snacks I bought for our plane rides last week.  Excessive?  Probably.  They didn't eat even a quarter of it, but I was sure glad I had it.  


8. Be prepared with a lot of activities.
 For my kids, stickers, coloring books, and little knick knacks do the trick.  
9. Expect delays.   Flying in the summer is one thing, but you never know what kind of winter weather you are going to get.  Just know there is a good chance you will be delayed.
10. Try to avoid transporting gifts. If you can, buy all of your gifts once you get to your destination (and if you absolutey must transport gifts, wrap them once you get there).

What did I miss?  What are your tried & true traveling tips?

P.S. And if you're a checklist person like myself, here is a great travel packing checklist you can download to help you get packed!

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Last-Minute Holiday Gift Ideas

Posted by Kerry on December 19, 2015

I had the opportunity to go on ABC 4 Utah and bring a few last minute holiday gift ideas including a Sony 4K 55" TV, a Roomba robot vac, a Bose bluetooth speaker and this weeks promo kids kitchen! Check out the video if you need some great gift ideas for your family!

You can read the post on ABC 4 here. 

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Gift Wrapping Ideas

Posted by Kerry on December 18, 2015

 cool gift wrapping

Ok there's less than a week to Christmas and even I'm starting to feel the pinch of going out shopping and buying some gifts for the family. This year my friend Brenda is helping me make sure that the thoughtful gifts I choose for my wife actually look like lovely gifts! I have spent most of my adult life picking out thoughtful gifts for those I love but then I just slap some drug store paper on them and hit it with two or 3 rolls of masking tape and call it a day. It's really not putting my best foot forward, you know? So guys, I know it seems wasteful to put another $5 into wrapping something that you just paid an arm and a leg for but it's part of the experience your wife/girlfriend/mother/husband/daughter, etc., deserves. Wrapping paper tells you that the person who bought the gift really cares. It shows that effort was put forth. So even if you give the person something that isn't exactly perfect, they will know your heart was in the right place and that's what Christmas is all about. Here are a few Christmas wrapping ideas we found on the internet. 

We will start with this Christmas chalkboard wrapping paper idea. Just get some black wrapping paper and a whiteout pen and you are good to decorate however you please! [source]

Christmas Chalkboard Wrapping paper

If you have kids receiving a special gift, this is a fun reindeer wrapping that will be a hit! [source]

cute reindeer wrapping paper

Here's a fun way to entertain kids & get a unique package design at the same time. [source]

Kids Christmas Wrapping

This wrap job just screams classy Christmas! [source]

classy christmas wrapping

I love the simplicity and nature aspect of thsi wrapping. [source]

simple christmas wrapping

Here's a cool way to use cutouts and a fancy box! [source]

 cool christmas wrapping

Would you like to share your awesome 2016 wrapping paper designs? #myrcwilleyhome on instagram or Facebook and shows us your skills!

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Week 1 #rcwilleysanta Giveaway Winners! Enter to Win Week 2!

Posted by Kerry on December 17, 2015

selfie santa 

We are excited to announce our first week's winners in the #rcwilleysanta selfie giveaway contest! If you are unfamiliar with this contest let me give you a quick recap. Come to any RC Willey and take a selfie with Santa! He and his helpers will be at all of our locations on Saturday, December 19. Bring your cellphone or camera and get a great shot and upload it to Facebook or Instagram with the hashtag #rcwilleysanta as well as your store location and you will be entered to win an HP All-In-One Envy printer! It's that easy! 

Here are last week's RC Willey Selfies with Santa winners. Each winner is going to take home a $129.99 HP printer just for sharing their Santa photo! Thanks for the great pics everyone! We will get in touch with you so you can claim your prize. If you want to take a selfie with Santa, come on down this Saturday and enter to win your very own HP printer! 

rc willey santa pics

santa photos rc willey

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cute santa photo

free santa pics utah

rc willey santa pics

rc willey santa

rc willey santa pics

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selfies with santa 

The HP Envy is an awesome printer. It offers print, scan, photo, web and wireless printing. You can print up to 14 pages per minute in black and white or 9ppm in color. You can scan to email and it even has a photo tray that produces lab quality photos at home. Advanced mobile printing makes it easy to print from your smartphone or tablet. Built into the printer are a USB port and SD card reader which makes it easy to import images from every device. If you want to learn more about this printer there will be one on display and a friendly RC WIlley associate can help show you all the features. We will be giving away one printer per store so make sure you enter to win! 

hp printer

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RC Willey Sells Toro Snowblowers

Posted by Kerry on December 14, 2015

buy snowblower utah

If you are wondering where to buy a Toro snowblower in Utah or Idaho, RC Willey has you covered. If you live in Vegas or Sacramento or even Reno, you can go about your business and probably skip this blog. But, if you live in Utah or Idaho this is VERY topical information. I know this because it snowed at least a foot at my house last night and it is still coming down. 

I write this blog today as the ghost of Christmas future. I have lived in SLC for 4 years and the first 2 years I decided I was going to save the money and shovel our massive driveway. I found on heavy snow days (foot or more) it took me 8 hours to shovel. Really smart of me. I have thrown my back out 2 of my 4 years here shoveling snow and I have traded both of our 2 wheel drive cars for four wheel drive SUVs. As with all tasks the right tools make a HUGE difference. Two years ago I bought a small snow thrower like the Toro Power Clear 518 ZR. It works great to about 6 inches. It's very lightweight and easy to maneuver. It does a great job of just zipping light powder far out of your way. However, if you get an overnight dump like we did last night, where you wake up and there's a foot of snow on the ground, this thing will not be of much assistance. I kept mine so I could easily carry it up the steps of our home, and use it on light days. Here's an independent review of the Toro 518 ZR from YouTube. 

Last year I pulled the trigger on a big boy snowblower like the Toro Power Max HD 928 OHXE. I knew I wouldn't be lucky forever getting light snow days, and today I realized just how awesome these serious snowblowers are. My poor neighbor was outside for hours just shoveling. I opened my garage door and started my Toro and it came chugging out of the garage like a ferocious muscle car. Snow was flying through the air like a cartoon and my poor neighbor's face just sank. I told him to go inside and grab some hot cocoa - there's no point of shoveling when I have one of these beasts. In 2 hours we cleared both of our massive driveways down to the asphalt. No more of that kind-of cleared snow - this baby scrapes the snow and throws it far into your yard and out of the way. All I could think about was how upset I was that I wasted so many years being cheap and not buying a proper tool. I know it's hard to pay for a seasonal tool, but in the moment when it's dumping on you and you feel how heavy wet snow can be on a shovel you will praise yourself for spening the money and buying the best. In fact, it actually becomes a pleasurable experience. You are just taking a nice walk in the snow behind an awesome piece of machinery. Just like Brenda who I found on YouTube!

Don't wait another day and don't let yourself get injured. Pick up a snowblower from RC Willey. You can always buy it on monthly payments and if you need a great gift for the man or woman in your life who gets up early and scoops hundreds or thousands of pounds of frozen water off your sidewalk, a snowblower is just that. Plus it allows you to be a good neighbor with minimal effort. You better believe the people in my neighborhood with blowers are happily clearing everyone's sidewalks for them because we know how rude it would be not to. 

snow blowers utah

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Take a Photo With Santa at RC Willey

Posted by Kerry on December 11, 2015

santa rc willey

Did you know Santa is making a special appearance at RC Willey this Saturday December 12 and next Saturday December 19? We want to invite you to visit your local RC Willey and take a photo with Santa! He will be arriving at noon and he has to take off at 4pm to get back to the North Pole. Bring your cellphone or digital camera and get a great shot that you can send to friends and family or put on your Christmas card! Also, if you post your Santa pic to Facebook or Instagram with the hashtag #rcwilleysanta as well as your store location you will be entered to win an HP All-In-One Envy printer

The HP Envy is an awesome printer. It offers print, scan, photo, web and wireless printing. You can print up to 14 pages per minute in black and white or 9ppm in color. You can scan to email and it even has a photo tray that produces lab quality photos at home. Advanced mobile printing makes it easy to print from your smartphone or tablet. Built into the printer are a USB port and SD card reader which makes it easy to import images from every device. If you want to learn more about this printer there will be one on display and a friendly RC WIlley associate can help show you all the features. We will be giving away one printer per store so make sure you enter to win! 

hp envy 7640a

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Christmas Tree Psychology: What Your Christmas Tree Says About You

Posted by Andie on December 8, 2015

 

 

 According to the National Christmas Tree Association, there are 25-30 milion real Christmas trees sold in the U.S. every year.  When you factor in all of the people with fake Christmas trees stored in their attics and basements you can figure that there are a heck of a lot of Christmas trees getting decorated in this country every December!  Despite the fact that millions of people are doing essentially the same thing, the way you decorate your Christmas tree actually says a LOT about you as a person, and your holiday cheer.  

I mean think of all the choices at hand-- real vs. fake, white lights vs. colored, perfectly matching vs. mismatched ornaments, tall vs. small, etc.  These are big decisions! What does your tree look like?

Elle Decor recently posted an article, "What Your Christmas Tree Says About Your Holiday Spirit" that is pretty spot on!  It described me to a t! Check it out and see if they have you figured out too!

 

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Guest Visit Checklist

Posted by Kerry on December 7, 2015

It's that time of year where you will either be a guest or will have guests come over to your home. I firmly believe in the old saying mi casa es su casa - my house is your house. Being a good host takes a lot of practice and even more inspiration. I have noticed a few things over the years that have really made me feel at home and my family and friends do an awesome job of creating this space.

Here's a small checklist of ways to make your guests feel at home when they visit. 

http://www.rcwilley.com/Furniture/Home-D-cor/Picture-Frames/Search.jsp

1. Photographs

My Aunt Sandi always displays photographs of her guests when they stay over. It is such a nice gesture seeing a photo of us hanging out on a past vacation in the room when we visit. Most of us have pics of our family and friends and I think it's a simple gesture that really makes a great guest experience. 

2. Wi-Fi passwords

This is from my personal playbook. I think every guest room should have Wi-Fi login info posted somewhere. We keep it on an index card on the bedside table. We also keep an extra iPhone charger in our guest room in case people forget to bring theirs with them. 

http://www.rcwilley.com/Electronics/Search.jsp

3. Entertainment

I love going to my parents house and watching TV in bed before I sleep. (part of that reason is because they still have cable) I think it's nice to have a tv or tablet in the guest room and simple instructions on how to use the remote or apple tv or whatever you need to get the thing working. 

4. Extra Blankets!

How many times have you slept over at someone's house and froze all night long? So many nights when I crashed at a friend's house they would give me this thin little summer weight blanket and I would just start putting all the clothes in my suitcase on my body because I knew it was going to be a long cold night. 

5. Personal Hygiene Stuff

My parents collect all their tiny travel shampoo bottles and lotions and deoderants and lint rollers and have them in a basket in their bathroom. My wife and I love it! It makes it easy because we don't have to pack all that stuff and it's also fun to see where they have been and what Pert Plus really does for my luscious locks of hair.

6. Local Reading

I love taking in local sights when we travel. It's always cool to grab a few local newspapers or your city's local magazine as well as a guidebook or two in case someone wants to read up on things to do and see. 

7. Dietary needs or preferences

We usually try to load up on preferred drinks, cereal, sweets etc., so guests know that we have thought about what they like as well as to break down the guest fridge conundrum. You know when you are a guest and you are like man, I really want a Coke but I am afraid to ask? We want to eliminate that issue. I try to overbuy food and point it out so people know this is for all of us and we need to enjoy it!

I hope this is a good start and if you have other suggestions please comment below. Help us all become better hosts!

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The Best Christmas Gifts of 2015 at RC Willey

Posted by Kerry on December 4, 2015

rc willey christmas gift ideas

I went around the office and asked a bunch of my coworkers what they wanted for Christmas and here are a few of the most popular items. Most people were super excited about new tvs and electronics but we got a few interesting wishes such as new flooring and a new mattress. Take a look at what RC Willey employees are wishing for right now!

4K TVs!!!

4k tv rc willey

We are truly in a golden age of electronics right now. You can buy a 4K 50" tv for less than $600. That is seriously nuts. 

 

VIDEO GAMES!!!

video games rc willey

A large portion of the employees I talked to wanted a system of their own or had a relative who wanted an XBOX or PS4. Video game systems have come a long way - besides having realistic 1080p graphics & surround sound, these are becoming the centerpiece of home entertainment with streaming from Netflix, Hulu & HBO. 

 

FOOD & DRINK!

traeger rc willey

Every employee I talked to loves good food & drink. The above are a few items that were specifically mentioned by RC Willey employees. Who wouldn't want a smoothie, hot beverage, or smoker grill? Take a look at the rest of the top 25 gifts right now!

 

 

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