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The other day I was in the grocery store with Michael and my friend. We were searching for a holiday treat to make while we watched a Christmas movie. I passed a holiday display with kits for gingerbread houses, pumpkin pie ingredients, and four different kinds of sugar. There at the top of the structure was the “Ugly Holiday Sweater Kit” for a staggering $16.99.
Hold the phone. $17 for a UGLY holiday sweater that I can make myself? Girl, please. 

How to Make Your Own Ugly Christmas Sweater

So since making a sweater seems so daunting, I thought I would break it down for you.
Here's what you need to do, there are a lot of steps so I hope you can keep up with me.

1. Go to your nearest thrift store and buy a sweater. In my opinion, the bigger the better.

2. Go to your nearest craft store about buy things to glue on it (hot glue gun should also be purchased if you don't own one.) Things I like: felt letters, rhinestones, sequins, actual bells, feathers, little fuzzy balls (not sure of the technical term here), 

3. Take all this stuff home, BOOM. You have an ugly Christmas sweater.

4. Sorry there is a 4th step. Have a photo shoot in your sweater. It's only right. 

 
 
I told you, it's really difficult. 

***** 

Today I have Tia from Hands on Pants Off (excellent blog name, huh?). Tia is one of those people that's unfairly creative, funny, honest and beautiful all rolled into one. It's really not fair. But I have her on the blog today asking her a few questions about her blog and life: 

Now that's a great ugly Christmas sweater. 

1. Your blog name is awesome. What made you choose that?

Hands
on, Pants off is a play on words to encapsulate the way I try to live
my life. I have never been shy to take on a project or activity or duty
that would be considered “men's work,” or too dirty or too difficult.
Each day is a new day to make it the best and feel good about the
effort, and I try to avoid regretting not digging in to make a
difference. However, I am not one to get all done up in the process. I
like to live comfortably as well. There is absolutely nothing better
than walking through my front door after a long day at work and taking
my pants off and slipping into pj's. No shame in my game. Life is too
short to always wear skinny jeans….how are you supposed to enjoy a
cocktail AND dessert?



2. Dogs or cats? I know you have both. PICK! 



Dogs
all day erry day. I always have been and always will be a dog person.
The cat is actually my husband's. He kept it after a break-up and it has
been with in my life for 10 years. I think it took almost three years
for the damn thing to warm up to me, and me to it. I was allergic to
cats growing up, come to think of it.
And
don't get me wrong, my dogs are gross. They fart and drool and slobber
over EVERYTHING, and are total pains in my ass, but I wouldn't have it
any other way.


3. What's the biggest risk you've ever taken- was it worth it?

Scuba
diving. I have a weird fear of open water, especially if that open
water contains whales- which it always does, obviously. Whales are
terrifying. Don't ask, they just are.  So while I was on my honeymoon, a
janky mexican tour guide asked us to pay a small fee to train us (for
the first time) to go scuba diving. No license or certificate required.
He would simply let us get comfortable with the equipment (with
guidance, of course) then take us out. I almost shit a brick when we
were in water no deeper than my knees. But then, I just let go. Fell
backwards off the rickety boat and dove in, not really thinking. It was
the most amazing experience of my life. 

4. What is your favorite subject to post about and why?
I
don't necessarily have a favorite subject, but have found that even
though I talk openly about the good and the bad in my life, my favorite
area would be the “teaching from experience” posts. You probably will
never find me writing a post about how to make your photos more
Pinterest-worthy, but you will find me giving guidelines to real life
events. Plus I like to think my life is hilarious…mostly because of my
HUSBAND. Need a little pep-talk to make you stronger in a very male dominated world. Avoid THESE PHRASES.
Are you realizing that baby making is a little harder than what your
High School health teacher told you? Me too, darling. I have spilled my
knowledge about the what-ifs HERE, HERE, and HERE.

5. How did you gain traffic/followers?

Well,
I actually have no idea. I have more followers than when I started,
that's for sure, but I don't really delve into the politics and business
behind blogging.  I started blogging as an outlet to my frustrations
with trying to conceive, and it has sort of blossomed into this weird
conglomerate of ramblings each week. Google analytics says I have a lot
of page views each day, so I must be doing something right!!
Giveaways
are always good, but I have taken a new mindset that I would rather
have less “true” readers than a huge number of “robots” and “fake
accounts”…it happens. 

6. If you could offer one piece of must-have advice to an aspiring blogger, what would it be?

Be
true to yourself. What is your goal with blogging? Is it to be an open
forum to express your feelings about things that are going on in your
life, or are you looking to make it more of a business and make money?
Yes, you can technically do both, but at some point the “realness” of
the blog is lost, especially if it's a numbers and money-making venue.
You don't have to apologize to anyone with how your blog morphs and
changes, just own up to the fact that you may lose readers as you gain
popularity. It is bound to happen. I don't even have a huge following
and it happens to me! 

You can follow along on Bloglovin', Instagram, and find out what I pinned whilst drinking on Pinterest