Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Christmas Inspiration and Preview

I feel like it has been forever since I last posted!  I have been very busy with the holidays and decorating and crafting and such.  I have so many things to post about, but just haven't gotten the time to actually sit down and write them.  I've made homemade turkey stock, frozen Thanksgiving leftovers, cleaned, sewing, and more.

But most of all, I've been decorating our home for Christmas, as I'm sure many of you have as well.  I LOVE Christmas.  Our normal family tradition is to put up the decorations and tree on Thanksgiving Day after we eat.  But I begged Jeremy to let me put up ours early and so we started putting things up the weekend before Thanksgiving.  I was so surprised at how much more I enjoyed Thanksgiving because of it!  I wasn't nearly as rushed or stressed on Thanksgiving day, I was just able to enjoy our time with family and our decorations already being mostly up.

I have made Christmas swags with fresh greenery, made ornaments, made stockings, made and bought gifts, put up the Nativity, and added lights here and there.

If you follow me on Pinterest, I'm sure you've seen some of the Christmas photos I have pinned.  I have been inspired by so much this year and we decided to go with the natural Christmas theme.  Here are some of my inspiration photos...

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Here is a little preview picture of our Christmas tree.  I'll share the rest of our decorations later this week when I finish them all.  I still have a banner to make, a couple of pillows to sew, and one more stocking to finish up. 

Stay tuned for better, non-phone photos :)

Friday, November 25, 2011


I love FREE magazines!  Currently I have subscriptions to Good Housekeeping, Better Homes and Gardens, Parents, Martha Stewart Living, Family Fun, and Everyday Food.  I haven't paid for any of them- I just keep on the lookout for freebie deals like the one today.

Plum District is a daily deals site and today you can receive a free $10 credit by entering in the code enjoy10 at checkout or when you first sign up for the site.

Today they have a magazine deal for $10- meaning you can get a year subscription to Everyday with Rachel Ray, Better Homes and Garden, Taste of Home, Ladies Home Journal, Golf Digest, Men's Health, or more for free by using your enjoy10 code.

Hope you enjoy!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Handmade Christmas Ornaments

For the past several years, I have been collecting Christmas ornaments for Jeremy and I to use once we got married.  Although I had a good number of ornaments saved, we still needed some additional ornaments to fill our first Christmas tree. 
I created some handmade Christmas ornaments using materials we had on hand- my goal was to not spend any money on our tree this year, and I was able to do that by using what I already had. 

The first ornament that I made was a coffee filter monogram ornament.  This is actually just a miniature version of the monogram wreath I made for our wedding. (tutorial for wreath found here) I will be posting a tutorial for this ornament this week.

I also made some accordion folded sheet music ornaments.  I think these add so much to the tree and are great space fillers.  I made several different sizes and designs. 
sheetmusic ornament
The last ornament I made were these cuties from toilet paper rolls!  I saw this tutorial on pinterest and started saving paper towel and toilet paper rolls and made lots of them to put on the tree and to use as gift embellishments. 
toiletpaper ornament
I’ve enjoyed making ornaments that we can use year after year.  Being able to have handmade ornaments makes our tree even more special to me.  Have you started on any Christmas crafts?

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Paperwhite Bulbs

This past weekend I planted some paperwhite bulbs in preparation for the Christmas season.  I love these beautiful and delicate flowers!  I did some research online and it was a simple process to plant the bulbs.

I just picked the bulbs up at Wal-Mart, emptied a big apothecary jar, took off the lid, filled the bottom with about an inch or two with pebbles (leftovers from our wedding centerpieces), put the bulbs in the center and covered them about half way with more pebbles.  You just keep water in it so that the bottom of the bulbs are sitting in water and that's it-  now I just get to watch them grow!

To my delight, they have already begun to spring up!  I am meticulously checking on them and just hoping that they bloom for Christmas.  It takes about 4-5 weeks for them to bloom so they should be right on time!

Monday, November 14, 2011

The Year of the Perfect Christmas Tree Pillow

This weekend I got Christmas fever and put out a few Christmas decorations here and there and made a pillow for Christmas.

Have you ever read the children's book The Year of the Perfect Christmas Tree? It is by far my favorite Christmas book and I highly suggest you find a copy if you haven't read it before.

I had an image of a pine tree from The Graphics Fairy and transferred the image onto canvas drop cloth using Citra Solv.  (Click here for a tutorial on using Citra Solv)

Once I transfered the image, I attached a ribbon to the top of the tree like the little girl and her father did in the book.  I don't have any red ribbon right now so I just used white.  Every time I look at my pillow now I am reminded of this sweet story.  

This was the first pillow cover that I have made and I made in the envelope style.  I was surprised by how easy it was and plan to make more pillow covers in the future.

We are planning to put up our Christmas tree and other Christmas decorations on Saturday.  I am so excited and plan to spend this week getting ornaments and decorations made.  

I'm linking up to 

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Happy Birthday Daddy!

Today is my Dad’s 50th birthday! 

Daddy, I love you so much and am so grateful to have you as a father.  You’ve always been my hero.  Thank you for love and continual support.  I hope you have a great birthday!


I love you Daddy!


Tuesday, November 8, 2011

A Leap of Faith

The past two weeks has contained another twist in the road for Jeremy and I. We had to take a big leap of faith and move towards what God was calling. In the past two weeks, we decided that the best way that we could serve the Lord and fulfill His calling on our lives would be for Jeremy to quit his job as a car salesman, and for us to again seek a ministry position- even if the position was not paid. It was a scary choice. We knew we could cover the bills with my paycheck, and we also knew there would be little left over. But we always know that God is faithful and will provide. We knew we had to act, or we would get too scared to do anything. We knew that it would be hard to tell people, but we did it anyways. We knew some people would think we were crazy, but we seek the approval of our Master- not friends or family. It's just another chapter in our marriage and ministry journey- one that we have come to understand that we'll never be able to plan out for ourselves. Last week Jeremy was offered the student pastor position at the church we have been attending. At this time it is not a paid position, but what an opportunity! It is a fairly new church plant- only 4 years old, but it already has an average attendance of about 350 each Sunday. (that is great for this area!) They are launching a new campus early next year and there are exciting things ahead! We are excited to dive in head first into this new adventure, seeking to build the Kingdom and reaching people far from God! The details and transition are still being worked out but we are so thankful for this opportunity. Please keep us in your prayers as we move into this position!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

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