Thursday, December 19, 2013

'Tis The Season

No sooner had I unpacked all of our moving boxes and organized the house when it was time for us to launch into decorating for Christmas. I was a little thrown off in my schedule because the kids had two days off from school last week due to snow and ice. Kevin was also off one of those days and was nice enough to haul all of the boxes of Christmas decorations down from the attic for me. But then, after my friend, Peter, passed away on Wednesday, I just didn't feel very festive or like I wanted to decorate. However, this weekend I more than made up for it and now I feel like we are really ready for the holidays.

Our holidays always "officially" kick off with a celebration of Caitlynne's birthday (which is today). Happy 15th Birthday to my sweet girl. She was a wee bit tired this morning as Jan took her downtown last night for dinner and to see Beyonce ("The Mrs. Carter" tour) at the Verizon Center. Although it was a very late night, she had a wonderful time. However, I am sure that after a full day of school and a two hour crew practice this afternoon, she will be a walking zombie.

Plastic jewelry, a fake cellphone and a toy car - if only it were still that easy!
It is hard to believe that in six short months, this kiddo will be able to get behind the wheel of a car. Most likely, it will be with her father as I rode with her a few times when she drove our golf cart in Bangkok and it was not a good thing. For either of us!

This was my breathtaking view as I enjoyed my coffee this morning...

Our front entrance area... 

These hanging baskets were my "steal" of the season. I had been looking at them in a few catalogs and on-line but everything I saw was priced at $75.00 EACH which was way out of my budget. I am glad I didn't give in to temptation and splurge because when my mom and I were in a local family-owned hardware store over Thanksgiving, I spotted the same baskets for $19.99 each and quickly grabbed two. I was very pleased with myself but now I wish I had waited even a little bit longer because I was in the same shop this weekend and the baskets were marked down by 50%. Oh well. 
The wreath and the baskets are wired with battery-operated lights but I don't like that look so I hid all of the wires in the greenery.

The sun-room photographs best at this time of day so here it is.
 I snapped this photo last night while I was waiting for the dogs to come back inside.
The dining room.
After searching forever, I found this chandelier on-line - exactly what I wanted and at a great price. However, in my excitement, I guess I didn't read the product description carefully (some assembly required) because when it arrived in a gazillion pieces, I was not happy. However, the price was right and I really liked it so I gathered some tools and went to work assembling it. Fortunately, Mimmo was at the house that day doing some other work and he was able to hang it for me quickly and without any problems. Does anyone want to guess how long it took Kevin to notice the change?!?
The sideboard.
We are hosting Christmas dinner for my parents, Kevin's mom, his Aunt and his brother (and two children). I am so happy that we are back home and can celebrate the holidays with our families again. 

These are just random photos from around the house.
In the entryway.
My ornament wreath on the kitchen window. I made those curtains a few weeks ago - I had purchased the fabric soon after we moved back here but it was a while before I got my sewing machine set up and found the time to sew them. Next to envelope pillows, rod pocket curtains are probably the easiest DIY project that I can think of. All you need is to calculate correct measurements (my biggest challenge), pin, iron and sew a bunch of straight seams and voila! You have curtains.
I will leave you with this photo of Chester. 
I don't know if it was the fact that he turned one at the end of November or not but - knock on wood - he seems to have outgrown a lot of his puppy behavior, the worst being gnawing on the corners of my rugs. I bought him quite a few new lovies and he always has one with him - either chewing on it, sleeping with it or just carrying it around. The Christmas trees (we have four this year!) do not seem to bother him and he hasn't knocked one over. Yet. 

Have a great Thursday!

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