Emily Hsieh, Shine staff

    Emily Hsieh, Shine staff

  • Luxurious but low-cost, last-minute gifts you can make right at home

    Unbelievably, it's less than 48 hours till Christmas. In the event that you still have a few people to check off your list, consider giving the gift of relaxation by whipping up your own all-natural, spa-worthy concoctions. Here, a few super-pampering, crowd-pleasing, inexpensive, make-em-yourself i

  • Easy, inexpensive, and eco-friendly DIY gift wrapping ideas

    You're finally (or at least, almost!) finished with your holiday shopping, and now it's time to give a wee bit of thought into packaging your spoils so they reflect all the time and energy (not to mention hard-earned dollars) you spent in choosing them. Before you get frustrated at the thought of on

  • Unique—and refreshingly inexpensive—hostess gifts under $10

    <p> Chances are you've been invited over to a friend's house for a party or meal sometime over the next two weeks, and naturally, you don't want to arrive empty-handed. But after all the gift shopping you've done this month, I'm guessing you-like me-have neither the inclination nor the budget to spend a ton. Here, a slideshow of ten chic, unexpected, super-affordable (everything is under $10) tokens of thanks that nearly any host or hostess would appreciate. </p>

  • 10 ways to keep your holiday party costs super-low

    The holiday social swirl is in full swing, and if you're one of the gazillions of people who's playing host these next few weeks, you're already well aware of how fun and gratifying party planning can be-and how stressful, especially if you're worried about overdoing it on your spending. To take the

  • How to choose a Christmas tree—plus, tricks to make it last

    If you haven't already done your Christmas tree shopping, now is the perfect time to go for it. And before you make your way over to your local tree lot, there are certain things you should know to score the healthiest, freshest, best-looking tree possible. Read on for a re-cap on how to prep for pi

  • The easiest way to hang twinkly lights—and other holiday decorating conundrums, solved

    We've covered some of the fun, chic holiday decorating options here already, and now it's time to address some of the fundamental challenges we all encounter when trying to get our homes looking merry and bright. Like, how does one hang Christmas lights on your trees with minimal hassle? And what's

  • The ultimate in chic holiday décor—and it’s all under $10

    <p> Adding a few extra decorative touches around your home this time of year is such a lovely, happiness-inducing thing to do for you, your family members, and any guests that pass on through. It makes the season that much more special and memorable, and you don't need to go hog wild-either in terms of time or money-in order to get into the spirit. Here, we've compiled a slideshow of more than a dozen chic and festive items to infuse your home with holiday cheer. And best of all, none come in at more than $10. </p> <br> <table width="436"> <tr> <td> <a rel="nofollow" href="http://shine.yahoo.com/event/moreformyfamily/toys-the-2010-top-toy-list-revealed-2415535"><img src="http://media.zenfs.com/en-US/blogs/partner/feat.mfmf_ep6.jpg" height="151" width="203" ></a> </td> <td> <a rel="nofollow" href="http://shine.yahoo.com/event/moreformyfamily/new-tools-to-navigate-the-holiday-shopping-season-2413661"><img src="http://media.zenfs.com/en-US/blogs/partner/feat.mfmf_ep5b.jpg" height="151" width="203" ></a> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <a rel="nofollow" href="http://shine.yahoo.com/event/moreformyfamily/toys-the-2010-top-toy-list-revealed-2415535"><span>The "top toys" list for holiday shopping</span></a> </td> <td> <a rel="nofollow" href="http://shine.yahoo.com/event/moreformyfamily/new-tools-to-navigate-the-holiday-shopping-season-2413661"><span>New tools from Walmart to save money on holiday shopping</span></a> </td> </tr> </table>

  • How to survive the mall on Black Friday

    Here we are: the biggest shopping day of the year. And while now is certainly a prime opportunity to stock up on hot deals and cross off most of your holiday gift getting in one fell swoop, trying to navigate a super-crowded mall packed with overzealous shoppers isn't for the faint of heart. Here, t

  • How to shop online to find the best deals

    These days, it's hard to think of anything that can't be bought online. So much so that the breadth of options, both in terms of products and sites to buy them, can be a bit overwhelming. And while the internet is definitely a great place to score a great deal, there are certain tricks one should be

  • How to save money on big ticket electronics

    Whether you're toying with buying a new living room flatscreen, or getting ready to spring for the latest video game console your kids have been pining for, it's a good time to be shopping for electronics. This being the end of the year, retailers are about to get antsy about clearing out their inve

  • Simple ways to save money on your holiday shopping

    Christmas will be here in precisely 45 days, which means despite the fact that we haven't even gotten through Thanksgiving, the holiday shopping bonanza is officially underway. Don't panic: it's not like you need to run out and buy all your presents right this minute, but if you keep this deadline i

  • A dozen pretty-but-practical items for your Thanksgiving table—all under $10!

    <p> After all the time and effort you're about to pour into cooking up a delicious Thanksgiving meal, you should also give some consideration into what you're going to use to serve it all up with. Having a well dressed table makes the holiday feel that much more special for both you and your guests, and following all that <a rel="nofollow" href="http://shine.yahoo.com/event/moreformyfamily/shopping-ahead-for-thanksgiving-staples-2405867/;_ylt=AkZw3ck7qki_O887H6JCloIeiKU5">food shopping</a>, menu planning, slaving over a hot stove, and <a rel="nofollow" href="http://shine.yahoo.com/event/moreformyfamily/tips-to-get-your-home-prepped-and-ready-for-thanksgiving-2407315/;_ylt=Av1FgTJZf6p270SLx9cVGxMeiKU5">scrubbing down the house to get it company-ready</a>, etc. etc. etc. there's something so satisfying about seeing all the different components of your dinner beautifully presented. Getting your table to look stylish and polished doesn't have to be a fussy, stressful affair, and nor should it cost a fortune, either-here, I've gathered twelve entertaining staples that are sure to come in handy on T-Day and beyond, and none top $10. </p> <p> Relate: <a rel="nofollow" href="http://shine.yahoo.com/event/moreformyfamily/thanksgiving-tips-from-moms-across-the-country-to-help-you-save-money-on-the-years-biggest-meal-2411836">Thanksgiving tips from moms across the country to help you save money on the year's biggest meal</a> </p>

  • Tips to get your home prepped and ready for Thanksgiving

    It's less than three weeks until Thanksgiving, and if you're hosting this year, now would be a prudent time to start surveying the scene at home to make sure it's guest-ready, so when the big day comes, the only thing you really have to think about is the food. There's plenty you can do in advance,

  • How to winterize your home—and save some cash in the process

    With winter fast approaching, our thermostats are about to go into overdrive-and now is the time to start strategizing on what you can do to keep your utility bills to a minimum (without sacrificing your family's comfort or coziness!). "The biggest thing to watch out for is energy loss, which happen

  • Tips for washing your cold weather gear

    Yesterday, after a period of time too embarrassingly long to pinpoint, I was suddenly compelled to wash a couple of the wool shawls I tend to cocoon myself in year-round. Despite the fact that the other apparel in my rotation gets laundered with regularity, for whatever reason my standards for hygie

  • 8 simple, last-minute Halloween decorating ideas

    Halloween is just about upon us, and even if you haven't given much-or any-thought to getting your home in the creepy spirit, it's definitely not too late. There are a plenty of really easy things you can do to make your place prepped and festive for all the little trick-or-treaters who are about to

  • Getting rid of fruit flies—the cheap, fast, and non-toxic way

    I mentioned this last week, but recently I've noticed a small-but-incredibly-annoying barrage (or at least, something like 2-3 flies per day buzzing around my kitchen) of fruit flies at home. They're minuscule, and appear pretty benign, but seeing them leaves me with the unpleasant feeling that my k

  • 5 awesomely autumnal simmer pot recipes to get you in the mood for fall

    Last weekend I stopped in to visit a friend who was brewing hot apple cider, which was spreading the coziest, loveliest scent all over her apartment. The perfect blend of spicy and sweet, it made her house feel so warm and festive, and instantly made me excited about the season ahead and holing up i

  • A non-stinky, no-mess, no cost way to get your food scraps compost-ready

    Composting is one of those things that always sounded like a cool, virtuous thing to do, but wasn't applicable to my life over the past decade in New York City, where I lived in a very small apartment with zero outdoor space. Since moving to San Francisco though, where I've upgraded to having a (tin

  • 30 easy DIY Halloween costume ideas

    While putting together a Halloween costume can be tons of fun, it can also be creatively challenging and tough on your wallet, especially if you're trying to outfit multiple family members for the holiday. So, to take the stress out of trick-or-treat planning, read on for a re-cap of 30 easy-to-asse