Posts Tagged ‘Christmas’

Christmas Decor


Posted by Rebecca, January 3rd, 2013

Whoa there, 2013! I hope you guys had a great holiday week! Because we were so chaotic just trying to get ready for Christmas, I majorly failed at posting anything Christmas related. But it’s only January 2nd, right? Better late than never?? Maybe?

Since I changed up our Christmas decor this year, I couldn’t just skip over it like it didn’t happen. I planned to start decorating early (and did). I also planned to do a less is more approach (which I did). Even with all of that, I still didn’t do everything I wanted to. But that’s okay, no one noticed that I never DIYed that new wreath for the front door.

Anyway, I started by wanting some felted wool garland and at first I was going to make it. After a day I realized I was insane and I would just buy some felted balls and string them myself. After another day I realized that was also a bad idea with all I had on my plate so I just bought some. I had a Land of Nod gift card from last Christmas (I’m a serious gift card hoarder), plus I caught a sale and got free shipping. In the end I ordered 3 strands of goody gumball garland in red, green and white for about $20. I originally wanted to do a mix of fun colors for Easton’s first Christmas, but then I changed my mind and went traditional.

I first hung a strand on the mantel (right after Thanksgiving, this decorating thing literally took me a month to nail down), then everything just kind of evolved.

The second strand of garland went on the entertainment center, after realizing that I didn’t have enough to decorate the tree. I put my white spray painted deer bookends up here and planned to add some ribbon or something to make them more festive, but never got around to it.

I bought some red pillows at Target to stick on the couch. They ended up being one of my favorite parts.

The red stockings are new this year and from Target. I replaced Easton’s newborn pictures with some Christmas pictures we took for our Christmas card. I already told you guys about the chalkboard that’s on the mantel.

The two small trees are from Target about 2 years ago and the large tree on the floor I got from West Elm last year on super clearance (I think it was $7).

My other favorite part this year is our stockings. I was going to make some chalkboard tags or something until I found these pins at Target.

Mike and I had stocking pins since our first stockings and I just love them. They’re so clean and minimalist, thankfully we all have different first initials. Oh and the “M” and “D” are mommy and daddy, that one confused a lot of friends and family.

Since I didn’t buy these ones the week after Christmas when I usually buy my new decorations, I didn’t have to buy a “W’ and flip it upside down to make a “M” like I did last time 🙂

If the memory card our Christmas pictures are sitting on will cooperate, I can show you the outtakes and behind the scenes shots from our Christmas card. We took some of the additional shots we loved and placed them in the frames that were holding some of Easton’s newborn pics.

One of my ideas I never got around to was to cover these mats with wrapping paper to add some more color to the mantel. In the end I think I like them without it.

I also updated our chalkboard for Christmas Eve (which we hosted). I seriously love this thing. It takes me 10 minutes each time and it’s so much fun for me.

The tree this year was something I was just winging, but I love how the color scheme worked out.

I used the dark blue/gray ornaments from about 5 years ago only because I wanted to use our old tree topper and skirt. I’m usually not one to change up Christmas decorations too much since you use them for only a few weeks a year. I mostly repeat color schemes and just move things around. Last year I used a combo of the dark blue/gray, green, silver and aqua, which I loved. After Christmas last year, I picked up the red snowflake ornaments, which were 25 cents for 4. They jump started this whole red revolution (redvolution? too far?).

Since the playroom is in the entryway and it is now the room we spend the most time in, I decided to take the last strand of garland and hang it over the door. I loved it right away.

Easton had a great first Christmas and I’ll have to share some of his pictures in another post. He was a pro at opening gifts after 3 days of celebrations.

I hope you all had a great last week of December, full of naps and good food!

ps- Dear god why am I up past midnight??

Map Gifts, That Ish Cray


Posted by Michael, January 4th, 2012

Rebecca and I randomly exchange gifts for Christmas; some years we do, some we don’t.  When I asked Rebecca if we were exchanging this year, the conversation started as a no and then moved onto ‘how about something small?’ We agreed and I started to panic because I’m the spender of the family so keeping gifts a minimum was going to be difficult.  But then I thought about the gallery wall we’ve been planning for months now — and how we have tons of frames but nothing to put inside them.  Instant gift!  Some framed things!  That ish cray!

Thank you Kanye for introducing a new word into my vocabulary.  I love the unofficial video below by the way; check it at about a minute and 15 seconds in.

The first idea that popped in my head was to find maps of old locations that are special to us and frame them.  I shot some texts and emails out looking for old vintage maps.  Nope, no one had anything of value.  I ran to a couple of stores like Barnes & Noble, Target and Walmart.  They all had great map selections, but they were very road centric for driving and trip planning. I was stumped as to what to do.

A few days passed and I was on Google Maps looking for directions; and it hit me!  Google Maps!  I quickly took screenshots of the areas I wanted, enhanced them in Photoshop and sent them off to be printed on 4×6 matte finish paper.

First up, Old Bridge High School, where we met and essentially grew up.  We met in math class while I was a senior and Rebecca was a junior.  I used to copy off of her.  We stayed friends while we went off to college, mainly chatting online, and didn’t start dating until 2003.

Next up is the pier in Deerfield Beach, Florida, or that little stick jetting into the blue area in the map above.  My parents have a small home just miles from the pier and we often use it as a means of a cheap, but fantastic, vacation.  We absolutely love it down there, so when I was ring shopping, I knew I wanted to propose to Rebecca on the pier.  We took a night time walk on the pier — a perfect time, right?  Nope.  You see little did I know that at the end of this pier were people fishing.  As we were approaching the end, the stench of raw fish was just everywhere.  So we turned around and headed back towards the beach.  We stopped about halfway (that’s why the pin is in the middle) to enjoy the views, to talk and that’s when I asked Rebecca to marry me.  She said yes and I quickly put the ring on it (I still hate you, Beyonce).

And then Rebecca asked if we could go get ice cream.  A perfect match.

The last map is a farm where we got married.  We got married at a Bed & Breakfast that sat on preserved farmland.  It was absolutely amazing.  We get to pass the farm quite often and because of this, we often get the chance to talk about our wedding.

They still haven’t made their way on the walls (surprise!) but I know they will shortly. Picking areas to map was easy, but I had tens – if not hundreds – of areas I could have used.  It was fun getting the chance to think back to all the memories and adventures we’ve had and narrowing it down to just three.

But how about you?  Have any great areas you’d like to map and frame?


The Non-Existent Christmas

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Posted by Rebecca, December 27th, 2011

Aaand we’re back! We had a rough Christmas around here. I wrote a very lengthy post about our Christmas, or lack thereof, over at Macky & Co since I felt the post was more appropriate for that blog. But I figured I should fill all of you guys in on what’s been going on around here and how Macky is doing, so you can read aaaall about it by clicking here!

Needless to say, we never finished our Christmas prep around the house. We never decorated outside. I didn’t get around to setting the dining room table. We never decorated the mantel or even hung stockings. It was one of those “sometimes life gets in the way” type of years and it seems like life was getting in the way a lot. Not only did I just finish school on Tuesday, but we ended up having a Macky emergency on Friday.

We’re completey drained here and we’re trying to take a few days to catch our breath. I originally planned to use this week to refocus on the blog, but I feel so exhausted that I doubt I will get as much done as I wanted. But! We did begin our crib shopping today, so I’ll have a post about that experience soon 🙂

For now, I’m in complete awe of my Macky Noodle and I just want to squeeze him so tight.

This guy scared the living shiznit out of us this weekend and I never thought in a million years that I’d spend Christmas without him. But he’s back and all is well! Except maybe those few gray hairs Mike swears he sprung…

The Tree 2011


Posted by Rebecca, December 19th, 2011

Do you know how many times per day I nearly write 2012? Everything I’ve been doing lately at work or thanks to baby has involved 2012, so my mind already thinks it’s here. But anyway, Mike and I finally got around to putting up our tree on Saturday. And that’s as far as we got with decorating.

We kept it simple and used the same teal/green/silver/gray-blue color scheme as last year. Next year I want to change it up a bit, but since I had a couple of final papers to write this weekend, simple was key.

I even still wrapped the banister in the same ribbon that I used last year. I’ve always wanted some lighted garland to hang and I considered buying some this year, but yeah, it was December 18th and I was trying to get a tree up. Once again, simple was key this year.

But! You may notice that I changed up the tree skirt this year!

It’s just 2 yards of fabric that I picked up at Joann wrapped around the tree stand. I was never a fan of our previous skirt, which was a blue velvety thing with some embroidered snowflakes on it. I bought it when we lived in our condo because it was the only blue or silver skirt I could find. The problem was that it was dry clean only and attracted some serious cat hair. Considering that Darwin loves sleeping under the tree, it never looked good. So i decided to look for some cotton fabric that would be easy to wash and would have a little more style. I might eventually sew the ends or make it a tree skirt, but for now it works perfectly fine.

Our tree got wet during Hurricane Irene and we were so relieved when it actually worked. Considering we just bought this 9 foot guy last year, I would have been seriously annoyed if we only got one year out of the first artificial tree we’ve ever had.

I guess the pictures kind of speak for themselves at this point, so here’s a bunch. Ps- Bonus points for the person who notices Macky’s butt….

Last year I had done some serious crafting and shopping for Christmas accessories by this point. This year is all about survival. I’m taking the day off from work on Wednesday and will hopefully finish decorating then. Our outside is not decorated, nor is the mantel… or dining room. I’m going for a minimalist look this year, even if its unintentional 🙂

ps- I just turned in my final graduate school paper ever! Now I just need to make it through class tomorrow night and I’m done!! 😀

De-Christmasing and Neutralizing


Posted by Rebecca, January 4th, 2011

One of my goals before we leave for vacation tomorrow morning was to take down our Christmas decorations. I know this wasn’t a priority, but we’re not coming home until Sunday night, then the next weekend is my last precious weekend before I start up grad school again. So I’d really like to do something other than focus on taking down a tree… plus it will be mid-January by then, oy!

So today, I left work early and mission was accomplished…for the most part. I was hesitant to pack everything away because I didn’t know where to start. We have way more stuff this year than we’ve ever had and I wasn’t sure what type of storage we’d need. Plus I wanted to put it away as organized as possible, rather than hastily thrown in boxes. Then I saw what Megan from Honey We’re Home did with her ornaments yesterday…

(via Megan’s Christmas Organizing post)

She organized her ornaments by color. Back in our condo, we had tree ornaments and a couple of vase fillers and that was it. But this year I bought so many ornaments for our large tree and other projects that I was just overwhelmed. So I decided to use Megan’s method as a starting point and started collecting my non-tree ornaments.

I picked up 3 large Christmas storage bins at Target, since we only had 2 before. I, like Megan, like the Christmas colored ones because when they’re buried underneath things, you know exactly what they are! I also picked up some smaller containers for my small ornaments then packed them up by color.

I took away all of the other Christmas items on the mantle and in the dining room and just like that, the house was neutralized.

I still need to find a safe place for my coffee filter wreath and tree, so until I get back, it will remain hanging in the family room. I kept the wood pillar holders, as well as the metallic pillar holders I picked up at Target out because they’re not holiday themed.

For all of these extra things I accumulated this season, I decided to put my living room storage ottomans to good use (nicely furnished room, huh? This is why you never see the living room :))

Most of my candles are in the entertainment center, but I store some larger pieces here, including the silver pillar holders.

Oh and we haven’t seen our Ikea Stornas table without an extension in it since Thanksgiving, it looks so tiny with only 6 chairs!

As you can tell I put the majority of our things away, even accessories that were out before Christmas. I just wanted a clean slate for when I get back from Disney. On to the tree!

I decided to keep tree ornaments separate from vase filler type ornaments, since I strung those ribbon things on all of the tree ornaments and I’m not doing it again next year! I had one ornament box from Target a few years ago, which I decided to start to fill even though I knew I had way too many ornaments on this thing.

This particular box is a little tight for my biggest ornaments, which is why I almost didn’t use it. So I only put large ornaments in every other opening.

Then I filled the remaining openings with 2 or 3 of the smaller balls.

I was surprised that a good majority of my tree ornaments fit in this one box! I put the remaining ones in one of the leftover boxes that some of the large ones came in. I actually had all of the boxes from all of my ornaments (even the ones that are 4 years old). I decided to chuck them all this year because they take up way too much space.

I packed my vase filler boxes, as well as my remaining tree boxes into a larger storage box and it was near perfect, until I remembered I had an unopened box of large green ornaments.

See that box of green ornaments messing with my plan? Whaaamp whaaamp. Of course it would have been too perfect to fit all of the ornaments in two neat boxes. The solution?

Um yeah, there was no solution. It’s called, I’m going to Disney tomorrow and I could care less if my ornaments are perfectly packed this year. I’m just happy I got it done 🙂 I ended up sticking that last box in a storage tote with some mantel things. The tree is naked, but still standing. We’ll probably take that apart as well as bring all of this stuff down to the basement when we get back.

Despite the fact that my flight leaves at 7am tomorrow, I’m not planning on taking a blogging break. I will be bringing my laptop and hope to tell you about my favorites in the new West Elm catalog I received yesterday, as well as about my first time ever at Disney. Cinderella’s castle is considered a house right? 🙂

On to my packing!

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