Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas! What our girls loved doing this year...

Merry Christmas!  May the  peace and light of Christ live in you all year long!

Last year was our first Christmas with two daughters, so we bought a pink Christmas tree and let the big sister decorate it.  We encouraged her to use dress up bead necklaces for garland.  She adds in bracelets and rings, too.  We did give her some cute ornaments, as you can see here, like the plush cupcakes and lollipops, and a few others.  She loves decorating the tree!  Little sister has really enjoyed taking ornaments off, this year, ha ha!  It drives her big sister crazy and we just laugh.

This week I had the week off from work and spent it doing fun things with the girls.  Monday we went to the aquarium at the beach.  The divers in the shark tank dressed for Christmas, Santa and 2 elves.  Their shark steering poles looked like candy canes.

The next day we spent with some friends.  My friend bought two gingerbread house kits for the older girls.  The little ones enjoyed decorating the little gingerbread men that came in the kit.  We ended up with goldfish buttons!  So cute.  They enjoyed eating the treats.

I hope you and your family have a very merry Christmas!  Blessings to you and yours! 

Coming soon:  I made a birthday cake for Jesus, and you will love the frosting I made.  I will share my recipe soon... also a gift craft I did using wine bottles and other cute bottles, and it's not the usual lamp idea using Christmas lights!  Stay tuned!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Updated a nice jacket for wearing...

I found this blazer/jacket at one of my favorite stores, on the clearance rack.  I fell in love with the fabric, and how it looked so cozy and would look beautiful with some winter white pants... BUT the collar was hanging really weird.  It's double breasted, but you can't see the top 2 buttons very well.  So I decided to try it on anyways.  I put it on and started playing around with that crazy collar, until I decided that there was hope.  I stopped by the fabric store and bought some snaps (see picture below).  I only needed one but spent less than $2 for four.  Here's the before pictures, full jacket and up close of the collar:

I went home, pinned where the snap would go, then sewed each side on.  Such a simple and inexpensive way to make this jacket work for me.  I had several compliments when I wore this jacket to work!  So glad I saved it from that rack of clothes.  Here are the steps I took:

 I used one of these snaps, sewed each side by hand.

And here is my end result:

I'm posting this for DIY Day over at A Soft Place to Land!  If you want to see what others are doing, go check it out!

Coming soon... my girls' Christmas tree and recent Christmas activities... also a gorgeous wine bottle craft idea, great for gift giving... and who knows what else might be up my sleeve!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Deck the Halls!

I just love decorating for Christmas.  Preparing for that day when we celebrate the birth of Christ.  I like to color coordinate everything at my house.  Our one exception is that our girls have their own small pink tree (I'll post about that another day!)

I'll start by sharing our tree.  Red and white is the theme, red to symbolize the ultimate sacrifice and white to symbolize a new life that we're given by accepting his sacrifice.  This small, slim tree was great for our last house.  We just never did buy a bigger one, which is perfectly fine with me. 

We bought this one on a budget one year, and have been adding to it each year to try to fill it in more and more.  I started out by using tulips and poinsettias for filler, then bought more poinsettias and some mistletoe for more filler.  It's a sparse tree on it's own. 

Our mantel is filled with berries, snowflakes and candy cane colored candles and candle holders.  I just love the random combinations and how they sparkle and all somehow work well together.  I actually use snowflake napkin rings up there, a single beaded snowflake garland, berry garland, crystal candleholders...
I also have a berry wreath suspended from the mirror.  we have a wreath suction cup hanger, it has worked successfully for the last 3 Christmases!

I pulled out an old unfinished project to put on top of the piano.  The piano was a new addition to our home this year.  I had this red velvet fabric embroidered many years ago to make a mantel cover, but never followed through.  It ended up being a perfect no-sew topper to protect the piano, and Christmas cards are sitting nicely on top.

I love to take time to prepare for a celebration each year.  We have been given such a great gift.

22All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: 23"The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel" - which means, "God with us."(Matthew 1)

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Geraniums in December?

Yes, it's hard to believe, but in the landscape area leading to my front steps, I have two geranium plants (that I planted last spring) that are in full bloom today.  It is so funny to me, but I also think I recall some of the Gerber Daisies in bloom this past week, too!  They're on the other side of the sidewalk, in another landscape area.

I decided tonight, after looking at the weather (low of 28 is the forecast), that I need to trim some of the leaves and bring them in.  They survived a freeze earlier this week, but I doubt they'll last many more.  I did about 18 leaves, put them in small plastic cups of water to root, and it should make 3 small geranium plants for next spring!

There are a few annuals that can be rooted, geraniums being one.  Once roots form in the water, you can then plant the roots in a pot with soil, keep it watered and give it some sunshine.  Then, when spring comes, you can plant it outside!

So, if it's not too late for you, enjoy your geraniums in December!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Sneak Peek...

I hope you like my new blog banner, it's a sneak peek of my Christmas decor.  This is a teeny look at my mantel.  I will share more as we continue in the joyous season.  Are you ready???

"...he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace." Isaiah 9:6

Quick Personalized Gift

Need a gift that is personalized and thoughtful?  Here is a great idea.  I'm sure I've done something similar before, but these little notecards were so lovely in blue and brown.  I have protected the initials of the recipient since this is a Christmas gift.

I picked up the notecards at a local store.  I used my scalloped punch with some strips of brown cardstock.  I glued them on the top of the notecard.  I then used my JustRite monogram stamper (1-5/8 round with Curlz font) to create a monogram for the recipient.  I stamped in brown ink on white cardstock.  I used my 1-3/4 inch circle punch to punch a perfect circle around it after I stamped, then used a Glue Dot to adhere.  I also used the same monogram with Versamark on the envelope flaps for a watermark look. 

Using a simple cello bag and some coordinating ribbons, I had the gift ready to go!

This is a great idea for teachers, hostesses, coworkers...  It's December 1st, have you fulfilled your Christmas gift list?