I am taking Centsational Girl's lead and trying to accomplish all this...this week! Hubby is home all week and that helps! We are off to a great start...worked in the unfinished part of our basement and gutted it basically - Bryan put a whole wall of shelves -up and I was able to get all my dishes, silver, holiday, candles, vases and lots of other "stuff" put away - I love it I can see it and therefore I know I will use it!
We threw away a ton and packed up several boxes and bags to be donated. It feels great! Last week was all about family time, laziness and Christmas fun...now this week I want to get clean and ready for the New Year! Tomorrow we'll finish putting away the Christmas and then will tackle Bryan's office...pray for us, ha! A hard days work will be rewarded with a date night - can't wait for some time alone.
So, what are you cleaning, organizing and doing this week?
Hands down one of the best toys we have ever been given! We all love playing it together, even Christian can "build" too and they have a baby version that is soft as well. Most nights you can find at least 2 or 3 of us with our Wedgits and cocoa in front of the fire - they are just so simple and so fun...if you still have Christmas shopping to do,pick these up there are lots of sets to choose from! They can be bought online and in most higher end toy stores. Enjoy!
Look what I got as a gift today...aren't they adorable?! I got one for each child - I cannot resist any form of personalization - love it! Names, monograms on anything and everything if I had my way! Next year I would love to do a whole tree in my living room of picture ornaments, monograms, and silhouettes...not the most original idea but I am a picture fanatic so I think it would be fun!...Thanks again Jen, I LOVE them and they were too cute to add into my already very busy tree so instead they have a very prominent place worked into our mantle garland! And just a random question for you but don't you always take a hostess gift? And don't you always remember close friends at Christmas with a little goody? Don't you bake for neighbors (or something for your neighbors?!)...do you tip your mailman, housekeeper and postman? What about garbage guys...it is hard to draw a line in these categories but friends, neighbors and teachers are always remembered - I give the gal that cleans my house an extra payment or something very indulgent and usually (not always) have remembered any of the other service men/women as mentioned above - I guess I am just surprised at how many people I know that don't give gifts at all...I LOVE to give and I don't always (most of the time) have extra money to work with but to me that makes it more challenging,memorable and fun! Something small and heartfelt for sure! I think it is important to model that kind of giving for my kids too - this Season we are trying to hard to do something"good" and kind or service oriented daily...I am a little late to start but love this idea...it is the reason for the season, no?
This old station wagon is filled with presents...they are like from the 70's, old and faded but a tradition
One of four bloodhound...Cam's favorite!
brothers...and best buddies, they are never far from each other...
the reason for the season...Miss Charlotte loves a nativity!
looking, looking, running, running...
One of Santa's reindeer...just waiting for the call!
Christian thought Jesus' lamb was a 'woof, woof '...
Today we set-out to find the perfect tree...it was so much fun! It was sunny and chilly but not frigid (the snow/deep freeze are on their way)! We make the hour trek every year, usually on the weekend of Thanksgiving but we went today and instead and it was great - no lines, masses of people, etc...it made the experience more "quaint" (does that make sense?) and Christian and sidekicks could run free amongst the trees. Bryan takes the task of finding the "perfect" tree very seriously, I always snicker (or get really irritated - ha, ha...) but he never fails to spot "the one", LOVE him. Charlotte would go up and down the rows mumbling..."we must find the perfect tree - picture big arms here too)...Campbell enjoyed pulling around the tree cart and Christian just ran! The kiddos were very enamoured with the 4 bloodhounds, lamas, deer and other little critters in the petting zoo...Christian loved the "meow" the most and enjoyed chasing him all around. Charlotte would call out to the animals(as we passed by to and fro) - "love you...have fun" love you..." too cute! We ate Oreos (very special treat!) on the way and listened to Christmas Music and copious amounts of giggles (screaming and fighting too). After the tree was cut down by my manly man we headed inside for hot cocoa (another highlight for 1,2 and 3) and talked with the owners of the tree farm - great people! We came home and enjoyed white chicken chili and warm bathes. The sugarplums are nestled snug in their beds and the tree is sitting in its stand (Bryan likes to give the tree branches a night to settle)...ready for lights and then ornaments tomorrow night. I'll give everyone their special new ornament and maybe we'll watch some of "Home Alone"...and wait for our first snowfall of the year!
I LOVE this time of year!
Do you have your tree? Is it up and decorated...?!
Busy getting ready for this little pumpkin's 2nd birthday...how can that be?...
Also, trying to remember the reason for the season and that it is not about the "rat race" but about family, and friends and slowing down to savor the time we have so generously been given!
I am happy to say though that my Christmas cards are done and mailed...whoo hoo! That is always a huge stress -er for me!? Why...?!...anyhoo...I am also happy to report that my shopping is done too! I feel great having accomplished both of these projects!
Hope to be back soon with more pictures and posts but like I said, I hope to just slow down and enjoy...no "half-tos" this month!
Blessings to you all...hope your Season is off to a great start!
OK, you know you're cheap when you make your own chord cover! I love the way chord covers look...who wants to see a pesky chord from a lamp, yuck...I usually buy mine at HL but they are costly, $20.oo usually! I decided late one night to whip one up for myself with some scrap fabric I had...I just cut a skinny, long, long piece (so there is plenty of fabric to "scrunch" ) and used my glue gun to glue around the chord (not too tightly though), when I was done I just scrunched the fabric all up...I love it and so easy!
The perfect Pumpkin cookie...this is to die for...complete with caramel frosting. The kids and I made these a few days ago..., makes close to 50 cookies, can freeze them too! Yummy, yummy! I listed the link below to see the recipe...enjoy! These would be great as part of your Thanksgiving dessert buffet!
My new Christmas china...Fitz and Floyd's Town & Country.
I found it at TJ Maxx a month or so ago...it was/is crazy inexpensive!
Example...the soup tureen (my fav) retails for $296.oo, it was $29.00!
Salt and Pepper Shakers were $2.99 for the set! The pitcher was $12.99! They had several other pieces that I passed up and now I want them and have been making daily stops into both TJ Maxx and Marshall's...I'll probably never find it now!
I love that it does not "scream" Christmas (since the rest of my house will!, ha!) but it's pretty and fun and has touches of toile...well, need I say more?! I also like to mix and these are simple enough to mix in other patterns for fun too! I LOVE dishes and can justify buying them all the time, it is really quite sick, ha, ha...Bryan and I have two other Christmas sets - one from his Grandmother that I love but it just is not practical for everyday...the other is Royal Hunt by Noritake, which I have never really loved, we got it when we were married and Bryan really loved it...so, I continue to hunt and to get more and more excited about the "Christmas Holiday"
as Charlotte calls it...cute! Do you have Christmas dishes? And hey, if you see any of these plate -buy them...I'll pay to ship and the cost of the plates and I'll send you something fun too!!!!
Do you need some super-cute and original gifts this year? Of course you do! Or maybe you just want to have the "perfect" gift tag...maybe you are looking for a precious birth announcement, party invite or cute cupcake toppers for your Holiday parties! Visit TomKat Studio's blog to see her beautiful work, I have been following her blog for awhile and am smitten with all she creates. She is very talented and has all her goods for sale in her Etsy shop too! So go shopping, promise you'll love it all, I do...and Bryan if you are reading this I want her green frame with white Hydrangea flower for Christmas (as conveniently pictured above, ha!)!!!!! Smooches.
Things continue to be busy but I believe I have met my Christmas card deadline to order (today!) Big Boy has his "Harvest Party" at school so that will fun...I also have a sitter for 4 glorious hours today...I will be having lunch with a friend and doing some shopping and then off to the party to help the other two Room Moms. Tonight, Bryan and I will attend the Notre Dame Naval and Marine Corps Ball as guests of some friends...so that should be a great "date night"...
Christmas card this year...?! Yes,? No? Maybe black & white...? We usually just do the kids but have so many friends/family that don't see us very often and would love a "family" pic...I can't decide...Either way, I have narrowed the card down to a few choices and have given myself until Friday to decide and order, I swear, those cards will be in the mail by Thanksgiving if it kills me! Why do cards stress me out so much...yes,I know MUCH bigger things in life to obsess over!
Jollay Orchards Fall Festival - face painting Train Ride at the Zoo
Cub Scouts All Family Picnic
Sweet baby Lukas arrived
Lukas' Mommy...(2 days before his arrival) we got together to celebrate before his arrival
Apple picking w/ Charlotte's preschool, 45 degrees and rainy!
Outside picnic with friends
Baking Pumpkin cookies with the kids
Getting together a basket of goodies to take to the hospital to welcome baby Lukas...
Just a few of the highlights from the last few weeks...the Fall has been short but beautiful here in the Midwest, hard to believe Halloween is just a few shorts days away then we are facing November 1...I am really excited about Christmas this year and have already started some preparations...including cards, gift making, shopping, etc...
I am a stay at home Mom to 3 precious children! I am lucky enough to be married to the kindest, cutest, sweetest man! I love to do anything creative especially scrapbooking, taking pics, baking and crafting with the kids! I love design and throwing parties (especially for my babies) I love to cook, and entertain. I love my friends, my family and my faith. I am always striving to create a lovely home-life and make memories to last a lifetime!