Wednesday, December 31, 2008
#1 set of 6 snowflake inspired placemats
#2 one two-foot tall birch tree
#3 set of 3 lacquered boxes in green
#4 two table runners in two-tone blue
P.S. Sorry baby - I couldn't wait! At these great prices, if I was slow to act, they would be gone!
P.P.S. I had everything shipped to you so that you can "present" them to me when the time is right... pun intended :)
- Hosting the Couples Halo Tournament
- Turning 27!!!
- Mountain biking
- Discovering the North Georgia outlets
- Hunting for Easter Eggs
- Helping with the Bluegrass Ho down & Bingo Night
- Throwing Austin a bridal shower
- Visiting New York
- Exploring Boston
- Visiting a best friend in California
- Modeling in the Chattanooga Bridal Show
- Celebrating Cole's 4th Birthday
- Celebrating our 1st anniversary in Niagara Falls
- Dressing up for Halloween
- Pretending to be a photographer
- Throwing Brook a baby shower
- Hosting our 2nd annual Christmas party
- Excursion to Grand Cayman
- Celebrating my boyfriend's 32nd birthday
ALL YEAR LONG
- Being a part of many weddings & graduations & birthday parties
- Getting to meet new members of society #1 #2 #3
- Finishing our kitchen
- Working on our dining room
- Improving our master bedroom
- Cleaning up the dressing room
- Finalizing the guest bathroom
- Making progress in the office
- Completing the living room
- Starting our basement
- Renovating the den
- Repainting the hall
Sucky moments of 2008:
- Visiting the fair
- Hurting my knee
- Killing a brave little squirrel
- Falling off my bike and intersecting with the tree & rocks
- My Mummum's knee replacement
- Gaining 20 lbs
- Getting 14 laser hair removal treatments (ouch!)
- Losing my dear Aunt Kay
- My mom's ACL surgery
- My sister's mouth surgery
- My seven visits to the dentist
- Not getting to visit my grandmother
- Discovering how much fat is in a Chickfila milkshake
Overall - it truly was a fantastic year. One for the record books. I even got to use my passport twice! There were low spots - like when I had one friend move far away...but high ones too, like getting closer (metaphorically speaking) to other friends - like you. You know who you are...my little internet-never-met-in-flesh-and-blood-buddies. So before I start dreaming about what is to come in oh-nine, I wanna make sure you know that all of you dear lovely friends helped make my oh-eight one of the best years yet. And I hope that you have a fun (like a fat kid in a chocolate factory amount of fun) and safe New Year's Eve!
See ya in 2009! Peace out 08!
Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Ornaments, berries, bells, or snowflakes all are good ideas to make your present pop. Add a twig of holly or a candy cane to a bow to make the receiver gasp when you reveal the gift. Go to the store now to stock and stash for next year. Get some extra bells to adorn the wedding presents that are sure to go out this coming year. Buy some plain mini ornaments to monogram for a fun embellishment to an anniversary gift. Even 2 candy canes are cute when making a heart on a package for your Valentine. The best part is that RIGHT NOW is the time to buy the cheap chotchkies that will beautify boxes & bags alike.
THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX
Sure you can stock up and save everything Christmasy and use it next yule-tide. But while you are picking up the bags & bows, take a look at other holiday themed items to come up with a versatile and unique approach. Maybe stash some el cheapo battery powered holiday lights in a double ziplocked bag and put in the bottom of a icy drink tub for a glowing Halloween buffet. Or how about getting some pre-tied bows (add a safety pin & provide a paint pen) for an instant baby shower name tag. Even fish, bird, or snowflake ornaments can double as table decor. This Christmas I used some scrapbook paper for homemade name tags. This same paper will make a fabulous frame mat for a photo for a little girl.
WORK WITH WHAT GOD GAVE YA
I love me some food gifts no matter what time of year. And sometimes all we have is basics - like tin foil. God gave us tin foil to protect us from brain-wave-reading aliens, to create our tin man costume and for gift wrapping food. It is an item 99% of folks have in their home. And it makes an excellent wrapping paper when combined with a bit of bow. But wait. This isn't the only thing most peeps got lying around for gift embellishment - white printer paper can be a great cookie envelope, baggies are perfect for candied gifts, even that odd mug (that used to be part of a set but alas, the boyfriend dropped the matching partner) can hold anything from Hersey kisses to a few Christmas meatballs. Now tell me - who wouldn't like to get a mug of meatballs!? Either way, we have many, many resources lying around the house that when combined with a little imagination can create excellently wrapped gifts that don't cost a thing.
So who is ready to go shopping? Did you already stock up? I already got all my supplies...but I am kinda itching to get back out there to see if I missed something. and you know what they say about an itch...
Monday, December 29, 2008
My Grandparents and parents gave us moolah...lots of moolah. I spent every last penny. I have a job so that I can save money...Christmas is so we can help spur the economy. That is the real reason for the season, right? Just kiddin...love you Jesus!
I also scored this expensive looking down-filled brown & white lumbar pillow at the Maxx for full price. Go ahead and gasp. I know. I don't usually do that. But seeing as how full price was only $14.99 - I thought it would be alright. Please forgive me.
So there you have it. My blissfully satisfied self - all because of my loving family and their thick wallets. All I can say is that I am undeservedly spoiled rotten. and to whom much is given, much is expected. That's how it goes, right? I guess I better get crackin on that :)
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
I decided this was the year to replace the little wire hangers on our ornaments with real ribbon. It only took about an hour to string about one hundred yule-tide balls and I love the overall effect. Since all of our ornments match, I went with a thin white ribbon for all. If you have a more electic style of tree embellishment, then a variety of different ribbons would look effortless and less matchy-matchy. Either way, no more running out for tetnus shots the week of Christmas because of wire-jabbed fingers.
The number one thing on my new-to-do-this-Christmas list was copy this idea. C'mon, nothing says Jesus is born like a disco ball! And since Jeremy and I used much smaller disco ball ornaments in the past - it was the milk to my cookies and brought me a whole lotta good cheer! Of course our color scheme is different from the Cottage Living interpretation - more traditional colors with a very untraditional 'star'.
We placed the tree in the den this year instead of the living room. And it was my brilliant boyfriend's idea to place it in front of the window (I had it in the corner - what was I thinking?!?!). Now you can see the lights from the street - YAY! Yes and here is a fun Bower Power fact - guess how many lights are on our tree...give up?...no clue?...I did the math and it is in the neighborhood of 3200. Sort of overboard I guess. But this gives Santa from Atlanta no excuse for missing our house. It's the one on fire.
When we removed the curtains, the curtain rod just begged for embellishment. I found an old Southern Living At Home catalog that featured a fireplace with round ornaments hanging with ribbon. Thus our blinged out curtain rod. I kinda think it looks like musical notes. And I love the shadow it casts on the wall. Oh and if you ever need some southern inspiration - look at the SLAH catalog for a quick boost.
The naked fireplace was so bare before. Now it has some candlesticks, faux garland, little white and red balls of yule-tide, and black & white ribbon giving it an infusion of Christmas fun. I know what you are thinking...it is missing something. Alas, we have no stockings. The shame. We definitely need to order some this year - do I hear post-holiday shopping?!?!
Ornaments got scattered all over the house - but this was one of my favorite displays. Our white ceramic horse head got the holiday treatment with a couple jingle bells (mini disco balls) and a silvery ribbon necklace. A few ornaments in small glass vases and you have yourself a sleek, modern (and super easy) display!
The den's coffee table got in on the action with ornaments galore and a bowl of Christmas kisses (no mistletoe required). The starry origami ornament is too big for our tree - but just right on a tabletop. And when the morning light hits the disco balls in the big bowl - it takes everything in me not to bust a John Travolta move. Seriously - the whole room lights up like Studio 54! It's totally groovy :)
I think a couple elves got a hold of our giraffes...those sparklers are too funny! Look's like we have another Vixen in the house - and this ain't no reindeer! Meow!
Monday, December 22, 2008
All new cabinets, counter top, flooring, and back splash replaced 1970's cabinets, laminate counter tops, linoleum flooring, and mildewy walls. The lower part of the wall was removed in picture #2 after discovery of wet drywall and moldy insulation. The wallpaper was removed and all new stainless steel appliances were installed. Also, thirty years of roach poo was eradicated from the premises.
The wall separating the kitchen from the den was just ridiculous...even in the 70's. It was supposed to house a wall oven and a cook top. But instead of providing more storage and delineating the space - it actually took up more space than it provided and blocked light and made the space cramped. It was quickly replaced by the 'peninsula' of a granite counter top with overhead pendant lighting.
(I really don't think my leg is supposed to bend like that! Can you say compound fracture?!)
Lastly, our fridge & microwave area. As you saw previously, the wall next to the fridge was only as deep as the cabinetry. We bumped that wall out a bit to make a complete covering for the side of our freezer-box. This same wall now houses a short bookcase (that holds dishes) and a mirror.
And there we have it.
A complete kitchen makeover - from head to toe. Dontcha just love before and afters?!?! I know I do!
When I heard that my mom had decorated her house, I was amped about sharing her mad skills in Christmas decorating. Armed with my SLR and my old house key, I busted
Nativity scene takes centerstage in the great room. The wee baby Jesus' manger gets an upgrade with some holly and berries to add a little more color to the overall brown-ness. And a bigger-than-the-barn angel joins the oohing & aahhing crew (if I were God, I would get the little tike a body guard too...come on, anyone heard of Herod the baby-killer?!?) as well as a couple flanking urns.
Also in the great room is the main event - the Christmas tree. This year's theme was "Woodland Birds" and she scored enough feathered friends to complete the tree and have some to spare. Upon closer inspection, you can see the tree also has some ornaments curtesy of the backyard. Branches were free from some 'local' bushes as well as the berries and some vacated birds nests.
Tying in the mini-valances with her color scheme, the tree boasts gold, red and a touch of sparkle. Yes, sparkle is technically a color.
Some of her ornaments were antiques....like this glass one with the handpainted wings and the super sleek tail feathers.
And some were newer additions. I liked this silver and white one that boasted the real white feather plume.
Mom's dining room was oozing with the silver and white decor. The mercury glass tree, the tall beaded cone-tree, and the random ornaments were my favorite.
Also - I just adore the whole throw-a-bunch-of-ornaments-in-a-vase-and-call-it-a-day idea. Her buffet is ready for any event as she has her punch bowl, stacked glass plates, and serving dishes already out.
Mom goes modern in the kitchen with cone shaped trees of various heights adorning the island. I especially like that she chose an area that had great overhead lighting to make this festive display. The lighting effects make the trees sparkle even in a dark room and immediately make me believe that all trees look like this in the North Pole.
Above the television is another wintery display that goes along with the Woodland birds theme. The biggest abandoned nest make a nice home for ornamental gold eggs...Laid by the Christmas bird. Some small pine cones got a quick dusting of gold spray paint to tie in nicely with the color scheme.