J’s Christmas Party

This was J’s last Christmas performance in his last year of pre-K! Sniff. I can hardly believe it. I am so thankful for his wonderful preschool teacher, and preschool director who convinced him to actually smile for this picture:J Christmas Party

Because a lot of the pictures I got were more like this:

J Christmas PartyPensive stare in the distance, while he waits patiently for everyone to be served before eating his pizza.

And here is one from his singing performance:

Patiently waiting to sing “Up on the Housetop”.

Love this sweet boy and that I get to spend Christmas parties with him (especially this one because it only required bringing juice and showing up, ha!).

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Santa’s Village 2016

Our original plan to visit Santa’s Village was rained out, so we headed out on what turned out to be a bitterly cold, yet very fun adventure to see Santa.

While the guys held our place in line, the boys decorated gingerbread cookies….

Santa's Village 2016

And took pictures with their cookies…

Santa's Village 2016

And posed for other pictures doing things like this:

Santa's Village 2016 Santa's Village 2016 Santa's Village 2016 Santa's Village 2016

Oh and one like this…

Santa's Village 2016

And after a bit more waiting, we saw Santa!

Santa's Village 2016 Santa's Village 2016J asked for a Qixel 3-D maker & a scarf, A asked for a Pokemon Elite Trainer Box & a Nintendo Store Card

Afterwards we made ornaments…

Santa's Village 2016

And took a few family photos…

Santa's Village 2016Santa's Village 2016 Santa's VillageAnd then we headed to Buena Vista (one of our local favorite Mexican restaurants) and had a terrific, late dinner! The boys are now anticipating their gifts from Santa!

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The return of Link

Elf on the shelfLink made his yearly appearance this past week. Hurray for four weeks of jumping up at 6 a.m. realizing he is still hanging out in the same spot from the day before. This guy causes me nothing but trouble. However, the boys sure do love him! Here’s a bit more of our yearly “welcome Link” tradition…

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A tour of our Christmas decor

Join me around our house! I’ve been steadily adding to our Christmas decorations each year, and I’m loving how everything turned out this year. I’m not the best at decorating, but I’m learning slowly (layering, creating visual points, etc.). The boys’ excitement over the decorations make it worth while. Oh and if you need help decorating quickly, have J come over. He will bustle behind you until you are finished, saying things like “why are you sitting down?” and “keep decorating!!”

First up, our entry way!

I love the idea of combining what you have already with some Christmas updates…

holiday decor

And I was beyond thrilled to find these cotton stems from one of my favorite local shops (Mint Julep Marketplace), to include in the Target vase I had been eyeing:

Holiday Decor

And then we dressed up our little reading nook in the living room:

Reading nook

And our mantel is fresh and new with accents from Kirklands (that mirror was 20 dollars!!):

Mantel DecorMantel Decor Mantel DecorThe bottle brush trees are from Hobby Lobby and I’m going to tell you, they are a glittery mess. But they look awesome!

And here is a close-up of our tree. Take a good look, because this guy is about to be replaced. We have to string lights that work around the middle of the tree because the pre-lit portion stopped working. Last year. No judgement.

Christmas Tree

The layering detail was a tip I picked up from the mantel link I posted with my Friday Favorites two weeks ago:

Stocking layering

And this year we added in a fox to our random lighted animal collection:

Christmas DecorI cannot even express to you the hilarity of this set-up. The Bible does discuss behemoth animals, so I’m pretty sure this is what they were talking about.

Let’s move on to the kitchen, shall we?

Immediately upon posting this, I noticed that one of my candle wraps has slipped down, and my A-typeness cannot handle that, so I’m fixing it now…

Christmas Decor

I love the incorporation of the metal canvas with the cookie print that’s a staple in our house.

Holiday Decor

And our Christmas card holder is ready to go…

img_0923

And my wall swag:

Christmas Decor

And my wreath that I made a few years ago with my sister and Mom:

Christmas Decor

And our cookie holder and Christmas countdown snowman:

Cookies & Counting

And that’s it! I’ve got my eye on these pieces from Anthropologie to complete a few areas:

Christmas Extras

And then it’s on to wrapping presents! Happy decorating!

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Painted snowflakes

While at Target insisting we “NEEDED” more holiday decorations, J found large wooden snowflakes and declared that they would be perfect for his and A’s doors. A agreed they were a great idea and I set them up one evening with their wooden snowflakes and a host of acrylic paints:

Painted Snowflakes

I love that they rarely go for typical Christmas colors. They wanted every primary color, silver, bronze, white, and black:

Painted snowflakes

Ten minutes later, they were all done!

Painted Snowflakes

After leaving them to dry overnight, I added them to their door with the included twine, and a little monogram ornament over the top. Perfection!

Painted snowflakes

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A gift list for the girl seeking a headband that doesn’t slide off

Gift list for the girlHeadband slippage is a real thing, y’all.

The set you’ll use every day:

Naked Palate

To upgrade from the save the tigers lunchbox I’ve been using:

 

LunchboxI’m becoming more fond of print and am mindful of the difference of looking at a magazine while the boys read, versus looking at my phone.

Journal

Perfect flats that elevate your outfit and become a new neutral:

Flats

 

I’m 99% positive A will get me these pens:

Pens

Bible study with a defined direction is right up my alley:

Bible

For Saturday morning breakfast:

And finally, my favorite of the signet bag thus far:

 

 

Bag

 

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A gift list for boys who love to create, laugh, and learn

We run out of paint, marker, and paper supplies regularly. The boys are always working on a project they need supplies for some sort:Boys gift guideA place to store the many art/marker/and pen supplies for our favorite office supply loving boy:

Boys Gift Guide

Combining the boys’ puzzle creating skills with their constant football night question “what state is that team from?” Football puzzle

Magnatiles. They are definitely an investment piece, but they are so worth it. J plays with these every day. Boys gift guideAn innovative and collaborative game that we can all play together:boys gift guide

This magazine is a win-win. It’s completely free, and has coloring, activity, and Lego building ideas. There is also a junior version and big kid version.

magazine

This flexible drum J stated was “SUPER COOL!” at the toy store:

Boys Gift GuideStep by step animal drawing cards for J who works hard to re-create any of B’s drawings:

Boys gift guide

According to J no boys’ bedding set is complete without Star Wars sheets, friends:

Boys gift guide

And finally some some stocking stuffer ideas! Happy shopping!

Boys Stocking Stuffer Ideas(Most of these can be found on Amazon, except for the socks from Gap and the Tsum Tsums from The Disney Store)

 

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Gifts for your person

Whether your person is your sister or your BFF (or your sister and your BFF, as is mine), they are endlessly fun to shop for at Christmastime. There is no list of must haves, they like the same things you do, and so it’s really like shopping for yourself and then gifting it (and then unapologetically either buying the same thing for yourself, or finding out they already bought you the same thing).

My favorites include: leg warmers for your matching boots, tights because you both hate being cold during winter, a fabulously scented candle, and sparkly earrings with a monogram trinket dish.

Gifts for your person[Leg warmers][Earrings][Candle][Tights][Ring dish]

Or you could get…a starter kit to heal nails after a gel manicure, two rollerball sets of perfume because you are also indecisive, a new book for that movie that you said “hey I didn’t know that was a book first!”, a cute hair scarf, or tiara like tray for their nightstand:

Gifts for your person[Naked manicure][Rollerball][Scarf][Crown mirror][Book]

In addition you could buy one or two of the items and then put the rest on a stocking stuffer list for your husband who likes you to provide a specific list ever since the year of the stocking filled with 2 lbs of candy and a random Sonic the Hedgehog mug that wasn’t dishwasher safe. That’s a total hypothetical of course.

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