Monday, December 19, 2011

The Twelve Days of Christmas: Day Seven {A Curly Willow Tree}

Even after filling my apothecary jars and wire basket, I STILL had some ball ornaments left {thankfully, non-breakable}. From a previous fall project, I had some curly willow stuffed into a jar filled with pinecones and a burlap bow tied around it. Instead of doing away with it, I just tweaked it a little and made it a bit more Christmasy. All I had to do was add some ornaments in colors of red, brown, and green all over.


After finishing it, I must say that I like it. It had some more detail to my buffet while adding height as well.


Easy as pie, really! Another simple, cheap, and quick Christmas decoration. No one said decorating your house for Christmas had to be expensive!

Today is day one of two school days this week! I might possibly have some kid crafts coming up for one of the days of Christmas to share with you!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

The Twelve Days of Christmas: Day Six {Framing Free Printables}

Something that I find oh so easy at any time of the year is searching out some free printables on Pinterest to frame or just put throughout my house. I found two that I immediately fell in love with, and all I did was put them in white frames that I already had.


Hop on over to eighteen25 to print out the incredibly festive print shown above. She also has a banner that you might like as well.


At Christmas, we also need to be reminded about the true reason for the season, Jesus Christ, who was born unto us and later give his life to save us all from all of our sins. This is one of my favorite verses, and I really love how they made the words into a Christmas tree. I though it was the only acceptable spot for my nativity scene to sit.


I’m so grateful to have a nativity scene in my home, and I hope to have the one I really want.  I pray that over the years that my Christmas collection will really expand, especially for when I have children, so I can share with them daily why we truly celebrate Christmas. Some things on my wish list include a Jesse tree, an advent wreath, and a nativity scene.

Anyhow….if you want the printable above, you can slide on over to Adventures of  a Betty Crocker Wannabe to download the printable that she made.

I’ve found many more cute printables that I hope to use in years to come. If you’d like to see them, check out my Holiday Décor Pinterest Board for suggestions.

The Twelve Days of Christmas: Day Five {What to do with Leftover Ornaments}

If you’re like me, you have bought some cheap ornaments in the past and either didn’t use them on your trees this year or just had some left over. Since you’ve already drug them out of storage because you had no idea what was in the gazillion totes that you knew had Christmas stuff in it, you might as well put them to good use.

After I finished decorating my biggest tree, I used all of my leftover ornaments {a.k.a. the ornaments that had hooks missing} in my bedroom by putting them in the apothecary jars that were just sitting empty. That room deserves a little Christmas spirit, too. What’s even better is that the ornaments coordinate with the décor in there, so it’s just as if they are a part of the room.


See? That took all of two minutes, and now you have less to haul back into storage until it’s time to undo all of the Christmas décor that we all put up for this short length of time each year. Don’t get me wrong though. I don’t regret one bit. Each stand of ribbon, each ornaments, and each wrapped present under my tree to be given to others brings me joy and gratitude for this wonderful life.


Now, what do I do with all of the ornaments left over from a previous year’s themed tree? I throw them in a wire basket that I picked up from the trusty Wal-Mart.


Voila! I instantly have Christmas decorations just by adding it to my entryway table.

Who said Christmas decorations have to be hard work?

Missed the Twelve Days of Christmas so far?

Catch up here at Day One: The Burlap Garland.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

The Twelve Days of Christmas: Day Four {A Card Holder}

It seems that this time of the year brings me great joy, especially when I go to check the mail. Nothing makes me happier than to go to the mailbox and see a handwritten envelope addressed to my husband and I. I immediately scope out the handwriting to notice if it is one that I recognize. I then try to identify that return address with someone that I am familiar with. When I finally get to opening it, I can hardly contain myself.

It’s always so nice to get to see everyone’s choice of card, whether it be an updated photo of them and their family or just a card that they selected themselves that reflects their personality. I must admit that my favorites are the photo cards, but I enjoy each and every one that I have the pleasure of opening. Unfortunately, Colby and I have not had the opportunity to make a photo, so we haven’t ordered any Christmas cards. Be on the lookout for our New Year’s cards instead.

Last year, I just wasn’t sure how I wanted to display my Christmas cards, so I just added them to the bulletin board that I made. This year though, I wanted them to be where I could see them each and every day. After all, I am so very thankful that each and every one of these people are in our lives. Thanks to Pinterest, I solved my problem.

What’s the one place that we all must go everyday? The kitchen.


This is a very simple and cheap solution to my problem.

All it requires is some sturdy ribbon of your choice, some tape, and some clothespins. I simply used some velveteen type ribbon that I bought one year after Christmas for like 50 cents a roll.

All you have to do is attach the ribbon with some tape to the inside of the cabinet door on the top and bottom. Then, strategically place  the clothespins. I alternated mine from one side to the other.


The good news is…

You can add more ribbon to other doors if more cards keep coming in the mail. Wouldn’t that be a blessing to receive so many cards that you must keep adding ribbons to accommodate them.


Now, I must apologize for the late posts. Because of this busy life I’ve taken on {more so around this time of year}, I just haven’t had time to sit down and compile a post. Therefore, tomorrow and possibly the next day, you should expect two posts in one day to make up for lost time. Lesson learned….don’t decide to do a 12 Days of Christmas so close to Christmas. Instead, start the day after Thanksgiving. No worries though. I’ll push through somehow.

Merry Christmas!


Tuesday, December 13, 2011

The Twelve Days of Christmas: Day Three {A Galvanized Tree Stand}

For the past two years, my daddy has made the sacrifice and lent me his galvanized wash tub. You see, at Christmas, I use it instead of a tree skirt. I’m not a tree skirt hater or anything. I am picky though….and maybe a little on the cheap side. All of the tree skirts I want seem to be $50 plus dollars, which I am sure is worth it to some. For me though, I’d rather spend my money on more important things. After all, the tree skirt gets covered up with presents all around it anyway….or at least I hope it does.


When I saw this idea in a magazine, I knew immediately that this was the ticket for my tree. It fits in so beautifully. Truthfully, the magazine suggested that you use a galvanized tub and fill it full of water to supply a real tree’s thirst, which is a really terrific idea except for the fact that I have never and will never buy or put up a real tree inside my house. My house is dirty enough as it is without the help of a tree shedding everywhere. That’s beside the point though.

Instead of using it for that reason, I just used it in lieu of one of those fancy-shmancy tree skirts. I’ve been satisfied for the past two years, and really that’s all that matters when it all comes down to it.


In other news, my husband is officially done with his Advanced EMT class that he has been traveling for for nearly the past six months. Praise the Lord for getting him through and for giving me a bit more patience! Now all he has left is his registry. Pray for him in the coming weeks as he prepares and studies for this doozy of a test.

AND The countdown until Christmas break is…..

 8 days {including the weekend}

Oh, and if you missed the previous two days, you can click below to check them out:

Day One: Burlap Garland

Day Two: Burlap Wreath


Monday, December 12, 2011

The Twelve Days of Christmas: Day Two {Burlap Wreath}

Noticing a trend yet with the Christmas decorations? Burlap is holding a strong presence in my household this year. I love its simplicity, yet classiness!

When I saw a wreath like this on Pinterest, I new that I needed to make one of my own. Instead of following a tutorial from one of those websites, I decided to just wing it.


I ordered some 9” wide burlap and bought the red plaid ribbon from Joanne’s. For the base, I used a wire wreath form, and I used some leftover floral wire to weave my burlap.

The trick to this wreath is not trying to make it look uniform. Just like the burlap garland, you want to fold the fabric back and forth. I cut my roll of burlap into smaller lengths, so it would be easier to handle. Attach your floral wire to the wreath form and weave the burlap onto the floral wire. Do not put the wire in the same place on each fold. I alternated mine by putting it in three different spots {front, middle, back}. For each smaller section, I would attach it to the wreath form and start the process all over again.

In the end, it ended up looking like this:



For the bow, I used a tutorial from Save-On-Crafts. I’m not the best bow maker, so I had to settle for what came of it.


As of right now, I am painting a letter for our last initial to add to it. We’ll see how it turns out. When it’s all complete, I’ll share it with you. I must say that what I love about this wreath is that I can change out the bow and use it for any time of the year! Very versatile!

On a different note…..

How is your Christmas shopping going? I actually did 90% of mine online, and I feel much more sane because of it. Are you a planner or a last minute gal? Usually, I’m a last minute gal, but this year I decided to keep my sanity and plan out everyone’s gifts {except for two}. Anyhow…I’m glad to know that I am done with all of that madness, and I can now enjoy the true meaning of the season.

Can I also bring to your attention that Christmas break is in such close proximity that I could squeal?!?! The count down is on!

I hope you all are enjoying your week!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

The Twelve Days of Christmas: Day One {Burlap Garland}

For some crazy reason, I am committing myself to a Twelve Days of Christmas series. In the next twelve posts, you’ll find some of my favorite Christmas decorating ideas that I am using this year throughout my home. I haven’t been quite as extravagant with my Christmas décor this year since there will be no friends or relatives coming here for parties or visiting. It’s taken some of the stress off, but in some ways I wish they were coming, so I would be forced to go all out!

To start off, I would like to share with you the burlap garland that I created to go on my biggest Christmas tree this year. It’s super easy to make, but I warn you that it is more time consuming than one would believe it to be. I must say that I really love it though, and it really adds that little something that my tree was missing last year.



Here’s What You Need:

At least 2 –3 yards of burlap

Tan yarn

Large needle

Here’s What You Do:

1. Cut the fabric into 2” wide strips for the length of the fabric.

2. Fold the fabric in a back and forth motion.

3. Feed the yarn-threaded needle through the center of the burlap.

4. Tie it up at the end.

5. Weave through the tree.


For now, this is all you get to see of the tree. The rest of it will come in time. Be patient, and let me know what you think of each project.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

These are a few of my favorite things…

We all have them….those special ornaments that you carefully unwrap and hang on your Christmas tree each year.

At my house, I have two trees. The biggest and the best is the artificial tree that stands tall and proud while beautifully lit in front of my window for all of the passer-byers to see. Then, there’s the table top tree that I’ve had for years that isn’t quite as pretty of tree, but it serves its purpose.

The biggest and best tree is adorned with white, silver, and light blue ornaments with a bit of burlap tucked in {more on that later}. It’s my themed tree that I am adding on to each year with a new ornament here and there, bow, or garland. The ornaments on this tree are all new, but I still have a few favorites. The newest and most favorite on this tree right now is this angel that was gifted to me by my mother-in-law this year.


Ignore the blue spiral coming through it. It’s not part of the ornament…..just one of those curly-q things that I stick all around and through my tree.

Some more favorites from this tree are below…



Now on to the table top tree….

It may not be the star of the show, but it holds a special place in my heart because it holds all of the ornaments that have been passed down to me from my mom and grandmothers. This year I picked all of the white and red ornaments out {for the most part} to put on it, and I lit it with white lights as well. It adds a lot of ambiance to my dining room as it sits on the buffet, and I can’t help but love it!

Of all of the ornaments that I have, my most favorite ornaments of all time are the ones below. When I was younger, my mom bought me a porcelain doll, and her name was Virginia. With it came these ornaments that told the sweetest story that included a question that I seem to get asked a lot here lately. 

The first ornament is the picture of Virginia writing a letter to the editor, and on the back it contains the letter that was really written to the New York Sun.



On the second is a picture of Santa Claus, and on the back it contains a portion of the letter that was written back to Virginia in 1897.



I did a quick bit of research on Virginia O’Hanlon and her letter to the editor. That’s how I discovered that the editor’s response on the back is merely a portion of what was written in the article that day. Here is the real clipping, and I truly encourage you to read it.


Merry Christmas, Everyone!

I’ll be back soon with some more ideas on Christmas décor!