Thursday, December 22, 2011

2011 Holiday House Tour --- ENJOY!!

Thanks, Kristen, for letting us know about Smilebox!! LOVE IT!!


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Sunday, December 11, 2011

Sneak Peek.....Man Cave Christmas

We have a fairly small room inour house that is supposed to be a study/office area. At least that is what it was called on the floorplan when we bought it! I have to tell you...I have never really liked this room up until this weekend.

Before we moved into this house several years ago, my husband's and sons' deerheads were on the wall in our family room. I didn't really mind because we had a formal living room at the time. However, this house has no formal living room, just the one big great room. This is really much better for us since our family is so large. I didn't mind sacrificing the formal living room. We decided on a compromise.....the deerheads would go in the office/study area, and that would become a man cave kind of room.

The boys had a big tv in there and played video games for several years, and we just moved the tv out a few weeks ago into their bedroom. Now...what to do with the room? I would love to have a formal dining room....but the room is just too small. I had to sacrifice that, too, in this house. BUT...the trade off was the ginormous kitchen which really is the heart of our home. I don't mind. We never used the dining room except at Christmas anyway.

I love, love, love Pottery Barn furniture. It would NEVER work in my great room, but I got to might be okay in the "man cave". I went into our local Badcock Furniture to pay my bill in November, and what to my wondering eyes should appear, but a COPYCAT PB furniture set, right down to the slipcovers!!! What a great price, too!!!! Only a couple hundred bucks each!! I checked, and I had plenty of room on my account, so I just ordered her right on up!! I knew this set was meant for me.

I'm not totally finsished, but I couldn't wait to show you. Nothing in the room changed other than the addition of the couches and I refurbished the mirror and added a buffet. I still need to distress it and work on the hardware. These are "sneak peeks", and I'll add more pics as I finish. I am sooooo pleased with how it is turning out!!! I LOVE THIS ROOM!! Ignore the buffet....I'm setting up for the party. This will be the appetizer room!!

Here's a closeup of the buffet....

 Then, when my sweet hubby took my to PB for our anniversary day out last weekend (we went to Kirkland's as well and several other stores), we spied these deer in the snow pillows at Pottery Barn, I knew it was meant to be!!
I swear I think I'm leaving these out all year long. They just tie the entire room together. 

Here's a closeup of the tree....The feather wreaths and little deer head ornaments came from Kohl's awhile back...They were on closeout!! Just a couple bucks each.....Pardon the pun!!!!  LOL

Can't wait to finish with all my "tweaks" this week as I have time....busy weekend!! Family Movie Night until late Friday night and Band/Chorus presentation today. The weekend has been gone in a flash!  I guess I will have to stay up all night every night this week and work on salvaging the house before the partay for my staff Saturday night!!!!  I have been working on the back porch, but still have miles to go!!

If anyone has ideas for seating extra people with limited seating, send them my way!!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Making Memories

One of my favorite traditions at the holidays is to make cookies with my children.  I have to tell you that most of the time, these are just the Pillsburry Ready-to-Bake predecorated cookies (you know...the kind with the reindeer, Christmas tree, or Frosty on them!). 

So, I'm not Martha Stewart.....sue me!!  I have a high-stress, demanding job that keeps me busy from early in the morning until late at night , have five kids, have my 80 year old mother living with me, so guess what??? These people are LUCKY they get cookies!! LOL

We do make the "real ones" (don't get your tinsel in a tangle just yet!).  The kids just have to wait until school gets out for us to have any time to do that.  We always make them on Christmas Eve day for Santa, and those are the real deal.  We have to serve Santa only the best!

This is a tradition I started when my oldes two boys were just a couple of years old.  Every year we get a new cookie plate that we display in the kitchen and in our glass cabinet by the tree.  I'll be sharing pictures of my collection in the coming weeks.  My cookie plates are some of my most treasured possessions.

One night we always have cookies is the night Rudolph is shown on tv every year. This has been a long- standing tradition in our family to make cookies and enjoy hot chocolate in our Christmas cups during the movie.  What's more perfect for Rudolph night than the premade reindeer cookies?  The thing I love about these is that my kids can do all of the prep work themselves!

They always have the best time arranging their cookies!

We have also been using the same tray and mugs pictured here for about 15 years now!  I can't believe time has gone by like it has.  I guess I am getting old!
They made their own hot chocolate with our Keurig coffeemaker!! They ADORE that thing!  I think we have gone through two boxes of the hot chocolate cups since last week.  I know they used one box last weekend!
They love to add whipped cream to their hot chocolate.  I must admit, I like it myself!!
This was a new addition this year, our S'mores maker.  We got it at Sam's.  Less than $20, and oh the fun we have had with it!
Pretty cute, huh?  Sooooo easy to use!  Just be careful not to catch your marshmallows on fire!
As they say in one of my favorite movies, "Grownups", we all got a little chocolate wasted that night!  LOL

I love, love, love this time of year and getting to make special memories with my children.  Can't WAIT for the holiday break...I'm counting down the minutes!!!  (The principal probably shouldn't be saying, that, though!!)  hahaha

It's supposed to be really cold here this week.  I don't think we have been out of the upper 40s here today.  For us, that is pretty chilly!  Stay warm!!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

While Visions of Pink Sock Monkeys Danced in Their Heads.....

I have been soooo busy these past couple of weeks with work, and I apologize for slacking in my blogging!!  I somehow managed to get all of my house decorated, all except for the back porch.  We have had rain, so I have held off a little! 

I have lots to share, but I won't overwhelm everyone!!  I'll start by sharing my daughter's room....LOVE IT!!   know a lot of you know that I have five children, but I'm not sure how many of you realize that out of those five children, I only have ONE girl. Yes, I have four sons, and they are all older than my daughter. She has a twin brother. They were my little "suprise" package a few years ago. All of my other children were in HS, MS, and elementary when they were born. Yeah, that was a shock! So, needless to say, I have always dreamed of decorating a pink tree!!

My daughter spied this prelit pink tree in Kohl's the other day the week of Thanksgiving. It was the display and on big time sale - less than $20!!! It did not come with the ornaments, obviously. BUT...we did buy a couple of sock monkeys there at Kohl's to go on the tree. The rest of the ornmanets came from WalMart.....have you seen the decorations they have for 95 cents???

We got a box of multicolored ornaments for 97 cents!!! See the bright blue lightbulbs and the purple curly q's? 95 cents at WalMart!! Love how her tree turned out....

We also hung two snowflake ornaments and a snowman ornament (all from WalMart - a dollar and change) in her window. We decorated it earlier yesterday, and she hasn't unplugged her tree since. It's been fun getting to do a pink tree for once! I think we spent about $40 total tree and all.

This is one of my favorite trees I have put up this year.  (I think I may have said that about all of them, though!!)

Can't wait to share more of the house, but I don't want to overwhelm everyone.  There is quite a bit to show you!!! 

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Visions of Sugarplums....$15 Christmas Bedroom Decor

After I cleaned my bedroom today, I decided to go ahead and put up my Christmas tree in there and do a little decorating. This is my same $20 WalMart tree I have used for the last couple of years. For the past two years, I have done a more modern look with leopard print and gold. It matched my other bedroom decor very nicely. 

However, this year, I decided to go with a snowflake theme using silver, white, and burlap. (I redid my bedroom back in March of this year. These colors seem to go more with my bedroom, so that is why I changed my tree this year.)

I have to tell you that I just LOVE how it turned out!!

For this project, I only purchased a large white snowflake metal piece, which was my inspriation for the room, (6.99 on sale at Big Lots), a box of silver glitter ornaments at WalMart for 5.99, and two sets of  silver plastic snowflakes for above my bed (Big Lots also) for a couple of dollars. The rest of the items I had. So, Christmas bedroom decor for about $15!! I think it looks WAY more expensive than that!
Here's a shot of the glitter pine garland and sparkly snowflakes above my bed....I have ALWAYS wanted to decorate my bed, but I have never done it before.  I had the extra garland, so why not??

I used my burlap ribbon (from Michael's) as a garland.  I also made a small bow with it and placed it (along with my last silver snowflake) atop the tree as a topper!
Sparkly snowflakes add just the right touch...I am in LUV with those sparkly snowflakes!!

I also took an old champagne bucket, tucked a silver Dollar General tiny tree in it that I had and stuffed in some old pattern pieces just for fun.  I added some Dollar General white snowflakes and some old adding machine tape.  I wanted it to be a little taller, so I put it on one of my silver trays, added a few sparkle snowflakes, one of my old books, and VIOLA!!  All of these things I had around the house.  Makes for a great wintry display!!!
LUV, LUV, LUVING this adorable Christmas tree I found for $2 at the junk store!!  I plopped it on top of a silver pedastal dish, and, of course, added my sparkly snow!! CUTE, CUTE, CUTE!!!

A few last looks...LOVE my winter retreat!!

I do think I will have visions of sugarplums dancing in my head sleeping in this room for the holiday season! I know this much, I'll at least have $$$ in my pocket because I sure didn't spend much for a GREAT holiday look!!  I'll be posting more pics of my holiday decorating as the days go by.  I am doing the Fly Lady Holiday Planner, and I have to be ready with everything by December 1st.  I'm really looking forward to a less stressful holiday season this year, hopefully!!  If you haven't checked out Fly Lady, you should!!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Gingerbread Kitchen Centerpiece

I am so excited that I finally got my kitchen table centerpiece finished tonight!!  I have been working on it off and on for a week or so.  What is the most exciting part is that there are only three things I purchased new this year for this look.  Those are the gingerbread man cupcake ornaments I used in my centerpieces!! 
Don't you LOVE how this looks?? 

I have had these red/white candles for about seven years or more.  I rarely burn them, so they are in fairly good shape.  A few dings here and there, but I can't part with them.  I love them!  I placed them on top of some icy looking candlerings I got from Hobby Lobby years ago.  LOVE those on my old "silver" candlesticks I got from Kirkland's back in the day.

Did you notice the cookies hanging from my chandelier?  I have done that same look for seven years now, and I am not tired of it yet.  Those cookie ornaments came from Old Time Pottery seven years ago.  I had to rig one up this year with picture wire because I lost the string.  I just wrapped greenery around it from the picks I use in the light.  I don't think anyone will notice!!

LOVE these silver/white snowflakes...Dollar General last year.  I saw them again this week.  They are supposed to be ornaments, but I use them all over the place.  Still look good and haven't lost their glitter.  The snowflake votive holder came from Hobby Lobby year before last.  $2.99 with half off.  Wish I had bought more than five of those!!!
Random shots of my votive cups and my cupcake ornament arrangements....funy how you can see something and you  just know!!

Love how this turned out!!  I really like the "price" or lack thereof even BETTER!!! 
Working a little in the living room now, and I also made a hot choclate station for the kiddos!! I'll be sharing that soon. It is C-U-T-E!!!!
Stay warm!!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

It's Beginning to Look a lot like Christmas....

I realize Halloween just passed, but that to me means IT IS ON!!!!  I love, love, love me some Christmas deocrating!!  I have tubs full of Christmas decor.  I have also been working on a few things I'll share with you very soon as I start decorating the house.

Here are just a few "teaser" photos for you....Let your imagination run wild!!  Just so you will know, I put up TONS of trees at my house.  There's usually one tree in pretty much every room, big or small.  I have different themes for each room.  My favorite room is the kitchen!!  I have been collecting gingerbread decor ever since I was married, 23 years ago this December.  I have a HUGE-MONGOUS collection of gingerbread items!!  Every year, I try to get creative and arrange them in different ways and add a few new pieces here and there.  I found a few really cute gingerbread men and ornaments this year that I made centerpieces out of....  Here's a sneak peek!!!

This little guy and his friend are going on the island...the kitchen is always a gingerbread/cookie/candy theme!

These gingerbread friends will be on the table with some of their friends!!  What a cute couple!

Our biggest family tradition is collecting Cookies for Santa plates.  We get a new one every year.  Haven't found one yet this year.....we usually have one by now!!  This is only a smidge of my collection.  I treausure these plates more than any other Christmas decoration I own.  Each one was picked out by myself and the children, starting in 1993 when I just had two sweet little boys...Now I have four sweet little/big boys and a precious daughter.  How our collection and family have grown!!!  I can't wait to start putting out our plates!!

And finally, another of my treasured gingerbread collectibles....a gingerbread palace!!  All of the gingerbread trees on the sides came from BIG LOTS over the years!!!!   Can't wait to see what they have this year!

Call me CRAZY, but I love, love, love Christmas decorating!!  Anyone else getting started like me?  I just want to enjoy it as long as possible.  I'll be starting to DECK THE HALLS this weekend!!!!  

Sunday, October 9, 2011

A Warm Fall Welcome

I have openly admitted before that I have serious issues when it comes to decorating.  I cannot leave things alone.  Exhibit A...the front porch.  Yes, I know it looked good the first way I had it...That would have been "good enough" for some people, but "good enough" just won't work for me.

Last week, I added the mesh and the leopard print ribbon + the wreath I made.  That looked great.  BUT...great is not great enough for me!!  I still wanted my cornstalks!!  BUT, alas, to my great one had them for sale.  I know plenty of people who have them in their fields, but they  haven't cut them yet.  So, I kept hoping.  On the way to Lowe's last night, look what I found RIGHT BEFORE the little store closed in five minutes!!  I ran in, got my cornstalks, and drove off into the sunset.  :)

I couldn't wait to put them out, so after I got home and fed everyone and got them all asleep, I played on the porch.  I know people were wondering what on earth I was doing at 11 o'clock at night on the front porch!!  I couldn't wait to get up this morning to see it in the daylight.  LOL!!

Of course, I couldn't have just plain cornstalks, so I added a couple of leftover acorn picks that match the garland, more mesh ribbon and leopard print bows, of course!!

Another thing I added under darkness of night was a fleur de lis bench to the front porch.  I have two of these....thought about adding the other one, too, but I think I will wait until Christmas...
I have an idea brewing!!! 
Look how cute this is with my old leopard print pillows, my pumpkin pillow, and Mr. Pumpkin...

I also added a few mums...the little nursery that had the cornstalks also had mums on sale for $5.  MUCH cheaper than the big stores had them, and they were much prettier!

I also added a scarecrow, mum, and tiny pumpkin to my adorable zebra print fall flag!! 

I really think I am done now...seriously!!  I don't think I have an inch left to do anything else with.  LOL!!!

Less is more, but EVEN MORE IS ALWAYS BETTER!!! 
Happy Sunday!

Linking up to Debbie Doo's Newbie Party, Metamorphosis Monday over at Between Naps on the Porch, to the sweet Miss Linda's Nifty Thrifty Tuesday party over at Coastal Charm, and a great blog I just found...DIY by Design for the Fall into Fall party!!!

OH, and I have decided that IF I get to 200 followers, I am going to host a special GIVEAWAY in celebration of reaching the 200 mark!!!! 
I just need eight more people!!!
(And someone to give me pointers on how to do it!)

Southern Charm