Saturday, December 4, 2010

I've become one of "those" moms...

Yes, I've become the kind of mom that I used to make fun of - the mom who overschedules her kid's time to the point that she has no time for herself.  I would like to officially apologize to each and every mom who received any of my disapproving thoughts in the past 15+ years.  Truly, I am sorry.  And on that note, I would like to thank the makers of bourbon...

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

The UnGlamourous Side Of Christmas Decorating...

Each year I am excited to take down all of the Christmas decor, and once it is down I realize just how MUCH decor I have - Yikes!  I have a tradition of purchasing my new holiday decor when it is on clearance the day AFTER any given holiday.  I save money while also getting the thrill of discovering the new items when it is time to decorate (cause you know I've forgotten what I have purchased).  My husband snapped this shot of my pre-decorating process - the sorting and placing - not necessarily the glamourous side of the holiday.  Thanks honey...  :-).

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Thanksgiving Menu

I love few things more than sitting down to a good meal with wonderful friends, and this Thanksgiving I am thrilled to be sharing a feast with my friend Jenn B and her family.  Below is our menu for the day...

Appetizers:  Smoked Salmon Spread, Summer Sausage, Assorted Cheese & Crackers & Fruit

Dinner:  Brined Turkey, Mashed Potatoes, Sausage Stuffing, Dill Carrots, Broccoli with Cheese Sauce, Cranberries

Dessert:  Jim's Apple Pie with Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream

It absolutely drives me crazy when people let the stress of a holiday ruin the FUN of a holiday.   This is where the "planner" in me comes out.  I  take a little bit of time to PLAN so I will be able to ENJOY my time and my guests (Thank you, Ina Garden for teaching me this!) ...and planning means lists - lots and lots of lists.  I have a cleaning list, a shopping list, a cooking list, a decorating list and an "everything else" list.  Wait, I'm not done.  I've broken down my lists into days - what tasks will be done on which days.  This might drive some people crazy - I simply cannot function without this kind of organization.  Once a task is completed I take great satisfaction in crossing it off my list and moving on to my next mission. 

You would think that this level of highly sophisticated organization would give my mind some type of rest, but sadly, no - I am awake this morning worrying about next month's activities (for which no list has been created).  It's a vicious circle, isn't it?

Sunday, November 14, 2010

New couches are on their way...

Yes, I'm this much of a geek!  I have taped off the area where the couches will go.  I'll make sure to post a picture once they arrive.  Super Excited!!!!

And here are the new couches...

Cookie Party Display - I WILL Win this Contest!

Rumor is out that I am "out for blood" in regards to winning the COOKIE DISPLAY category at my friend's cookie party, and they are right!  Almost a year ago I was told about this incredible cookie party thrown by my friend Jenn B.  Invitations to this party are a privilege (no kidding - she is VERY selective about who she allows into her home).  We had recently met at the gym and  found that we had many things in common - after our friendship developed I received word that I would be part of the elite group.  I've been plotting and planning my design ever since.

Since I am already on a "nature-inspired" kick for my home I decided to carry that theme over to my cookie display.  With a little help from a beautiful 4-tiered wrought iron display piece from Pottery Barn I was well on my way to creating my entry. 

Pictures?  Oh...I so want to show you, but you see there are spies everywhere - I can't risk one of them seeing my creation.  I promise to post pictures after the party - I'll even include the recipe for the bourbon balls I will be making.  Stay tuned! 

Friday, November 12, 2010

More Nature Inspired Ideas for Christmas

If you are anything like me you burn through your Pottery Barn catalog like it was a trashy novel.  I simple love their style,  and many of the items in my home were purchased there; however, there are some things I KNOW I can make much cheaper (and better) than what they sell.  The Bucket & Branch Advent Calendar is one of those items.  I have more branches than I know what to do with, the rope is already in my craft room - now if I can find some type of bucket (or other rustic inspired item) I'm in business!  I am skipping the gym today and heading out today to find some goodies...
So I was at the Dollar Store today, and I struck GOLD!!!  Check out these little buckets - 3 for $1!!!  I found them in the wedding section.  I was originally going to copy the Pottery Barn item, but now I'm thinking I may just put the numbers on the buckets and hang them on the Christmas tree.  As soon as we have a non-rainy day I'm going to start spray painting (a brushed bronze color will look rustic & will look beautiful on my tree this year)...or maybe I will just leave them white...this has to evolve in my mind.

UPDATE:  I am very limited on wall space, so I had to come up with a different way to display the Advent Buckets - on my tree!  I've filled the buckets with two pieces of candy (one for each of my children), and attached a number to each one.  I'm thrilled with the way it turned out!  The entire project cost my under $10.