Christmas and New Year’s

We celebrate Christmas with my family on the Sunday after Christmas, so this year it was the day before New Year’s Eve, which meant celebrating just continued from one holiday right into the next holiday.  Bob and I made it a nice extra long weekend to allow time for us to really enjoy our time with family and friends.  My family started the Christmas celebration with a wonderful meal.  Bob was able to capture a picture of all of us at the table.

Christmas - Family Table

Mom added a bit of Christmas decoration to her kitchen by hanging a small wreath, which I think is actually a candle ring, above the stove. 

Christmas - Wreath on tiled backsplash

I think she really wanted her wreath featured on the blog, because she made sure to point it out.  I guess after I posted her leaves in the crock, she realized she is at risk for me taking pictures and posting, so this time she chose what she wanted me to share. 🙂  I am gladly sharing, because I like how it looked.  And, it shows off the backsplash tile that Kristel and I installed for Mom last year. 

After our delicious meal, we all shared in some gift giving.  We added some fun to it, and made whoever was the first to find a present with their name on it, then got to find a present for the next person.  We did that until we all had a present in hand.

Christmas - Family with first present

Then, it was the big decision of who got to open first!!  The kids were very anxious, but everyone was patient and shared in the fun and spirit of the season of giving.

Christmas - Cake Pops

There were also some treats to enjoy throughout the day.  Aniyah had gotten a cake pop maker for Christmas, so we got to sample her delicious and adorable creations.  The kids then had some fun playing one of the new games, Hedbandz.

Christmas - nieces and nephews playing hedbandz

They all look so cute with their hedbandz on…and they are no dummies, they tried to cheat and ask to see the picture I took of them so that they would know what they were.  Each kid didn’t know what was on their head and had to ask questions to narrow down what they might be until they could guess what they were.  It was quite entertaining. 

Christmas with my family was a wonderful day!

The next day was New Year’s Eve.  I ventured out to Target to do some shopping…I had a gift card burning a hole in my pocket!  I lucked out and all the Christmas decor was 70% off.  I was looking at the Christmas decor for two reasons – one to see if there would be anything I could use in my house for next year, and two for anything I could use for New Year’s decorations.  I’ve never actually decorated for New Year’s before, but we were having neighbors/friends to our house that evening.  I didn’t want to take all my Christmas decorations down, but I did want to add some New Year’s decor.  The evening was to be a progressive evening, so everyone was coming to our house for cocktails and appetizers before moving on to the next house for dinner.  So, I added a few touches of New Year’s to the basement bar and dining area.

New Years - Basement Bar buffet

I set up the bar with part of the appetizer buffet, more food was brought by our guests.  I took the pictures early, so I didn’t forget once everyone arrived.

New Years - Basement Bar Vignette

For the bar decorations, I used glass containers that I had.  I bought some silver and gold bead garland and the tinsel at Target.  I used gold ornaments that I had and put them in the one glass with the beads.  The other glass just has the tinsel layered in it.  And, the apothecary jar in the back has silver and gold painted pine cones that I had, and was using in my Christmas decor.  I found the New Year’s printable on Pinterest (although I can’t seem to find my original pin of it now).  I just printed it on plain paper and slipped it in a frame I had – it’s actually a frame that normally has our wedding picture in it, but it matched the colors so I borrowed it for the evening.

New Years - Tablescape - mercury glass candles tinsel ornaments

This was the table in the basement. We didn’t actually ever sit at it, but it provided nice ambiance.  I had the mercury glass candle holders – they are from Target too, I just bought them before Christmas. 

New Years - Centerpiece - candles tinsel ornaments mercury glass

For the centerpiece, I used a rectangular white serving dish.  It was in the Christmas clearance at Target, so I got it cheap, and I know I will use it over and over.  The center candle holder was another one of my Target purchases that day.  I had the two little candleholders; they are normally on the shelves in the basement.  I just added the tinsel and some silver and gold ornaments and called it done.  I’m glad I decorated, because both of the other houses we went to that evening had very festive New Year’s decorations.  Here is all of us enjoying our cocktails and appetizers – Bob was the photographer again, so he’s the only one missing from the picture.

New Years - Friends celebrating at basement bar

A good time was had by all!  Happy New Year!!

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Our Christmas House

Christmas - Puddy on porch with greenery in urns

Welcome to our Christmas House!  I’ve shared some pieces of projects around our house recently, but this is the complete tour of  our home at Christmastime with many pictures and few words. 

Christmas - Greens-magnolia-berries-urn-on-porch

I just stuff several types of greenery in the urns and added a few faux berries, but I think the real highlight are the magnolia branches in each pot.  This was the first year I’ve used them and I think it really adds to the overall composition.

Christmas - DIY Wreath on Door

The poinsettias are more burgundy than the picture shows, but you can get a pretty good idea of the overall look.

Christmas-Foyer table with tree and santa

Right inside the door, the foyer table is decorated with tree #1.  This tree is home to the more sentimental ornaments.

Christmas- Puddy with Tree with Red and Green Lights

I had a lot of difficulty getting a picture of our real tree lit, so I snapped this one of Puddy is his normal spot with the tree in the background.

Christmas-Real Tree in daylight

Same tree, just in daylight.

Christmas - Greens in Spraypainted vase-ornaments- wreath on mirror-foyer-tree-in-background

The living room coffee table, looking back to the foyer.

Christmas - Neutral Vignette with Santa trees and Nativity

A little vignette on the table in the odd corner of the living room.

Christmas-Ornaments in vase reflecting in mirror

Christmas - Fresh Greens lights and stockings on mantle

Christmas-Touches of Christmas in Powder Room

The powder room even has a little touch of Christmas.

Christmas - Craft Room Shelves

These are the shelves above my desk in my craft room.  They were the first part of the house to be decorated, since its one spot that is mainly just for me to enjoy.

Christmas - DIY Centerpieces-Sprayed Branches with snowflakes-poinsettias-and-candlesticks

I’m still using my spraypainted branches!  I just changed the vase filler and added some snowflakes.

Christmas - Ornaments in Glass on Buffet

I have quite a variety of ornaments, so they end up in any vessel I can find around the house.  These are on the buffet in our breakfast room.

Christmas -DIY Cork Board into Card Holder

This is my card display in our kitchen.  I used an old cork board and just wrapped fabric around it using staples to secure it on the back, and added Christmas roping secured with nail head trim on the front and staples on the back.  Above was with our first card that arrived.  Below, it is now overflowing with greetings from friends and family.

Christmas-DIY Card Holder full of cards

Christmas - Basement - Table and Side Table Decorated

Now, you are getting the tour of the basement decorations, starting with table and side table above.

Christmas - Basement Entertainment Center Shelves

The shelves get a whole new look for Christmas. 

Christmas-Basement Tree with Christmas Shelves and Angel

And, finally this is tree #3!  This tree has had two different looks this year.  It was decorated in pink for Keri’s baby shower, but I changed it to the blue decorations since then.  We’ve only had this tree for two Christmases, and I just love it.  It is so nice to be able to put it up early and leave it up for as long as we like.  I think it was up until February last year!

I hope you enjoyed the tour of our Christmas House.  Anyone else have three trees?  Do you decorate the whole house, or just certain rooms?

Simple Fall Decorating

I really was trying to cling on to the last bits of Summer, but the weather is changing and it is almost officially Fall.  Plus, blogland has become filled with Fall decorating ideas, so I thought I should begin to decorate our house as well.  The leaves really haven’t started to change here yet, and I haven’t gone out searching for pumpkins and gourds yet….although I did pass a farm stand that was new to me in my work travels today, so I may have to go back there.  But, since nature has not helped me yet in my decorating, I started to work with what I already had.  I had picked up a few new to me Fall items at yard sales this summer, so I did have some different decor to work into what I have used in the past.

When I pulled out all my Fall decor and supplies, I found several picks that I had yet to do anything with.  So, I took the easiest route first and just put them under glass to see what I thought, and it worked for me. 

I added the leaf holding a candle, a recent yard sale find, and the large candleholder which I stole from my everyday decor in the basement. 

I knew I needed something else with height and none of my other Fall items were tall.  I remembered I had some Fall themed scrapbook paper that I had forever and never used, so I pulled that out and popped it into one of the random frames from my closet.   I added some ceramic pumpkins and called it a day….well, after I moved them all around several times and waited until this morning to decide that it would work for me.  Its not as beautiful and detailed as some Fall decorating I’ve seen, but its simple and seasonal, so I think our foyer now is ready for Fall.

 

I also worked on changing up the dining room table centerpiece as well. The centerpiece had been the same, for the most part since Easter!  Before Easter I had collected some willow branches on a walk during my lunch one day knowing that I wanted to spray paint them and put them in a vase.  I did just that, and then for Easter I hung colored eggs from the branches and put it between some candlesticks and on top of a colorful runner.  After Easter, all I did was remove the eggs and it stayed like that through the Summer. 

I decided to keep the same structure and just update it for Fall.  I pulled out our neutral tablerunner, took the branches and rocks out of the vase.  I replaced the rocks with corn and put the branches back in the vase.  Then, I used more of the picks I had on hand from yard sales and ripped them apart.  I used the leaves and acorns from the picks and their individual wires to hang them on the branches.  I added two painted craft pumpkins and swapped the white candlesticks for wooden ones to give me a simple Fall tablescape.

I did add a few other Fall touches to the house, but I’m sure I will add more once I can bring some pumpkins and gourds home.  Anyone else work with what they have to decorate for Fall this year?

The Lettered Cottage