Wednesday, December 23, 2009

A Visit with Santa and a Yummy Gingerbread Village

The kids were so excited to see Santa this year. Brayden did not like when we handed him to the strange man with the beard. He did not care to give him any Christmas wishes!

The kids were telling Santa all their wishes. Bryce says, "I ask Santa for all the expensive stuff since we don't have to pay for it." Good thinking Bryce!

This is my kids with their cousins outside in Santa's sleigh. It was so cold!

My little elves hard at work on their Christmas crafts.

That is a real tree behind us with tons of lights and the ornaments are huge! Very cool! How do they get all those up there???

Here is the start to our gingerbread village. Lots of colorful candy decorations!

We made them out of graham crackers "glued" together with melted sugar. I got the instructions out of the December Better Homes and Gardens magazine. I liked doing this better than using the gingerbread house kit. It was much better tasting. Each kid did their own house and picked what color they "painted" their house. Bryce picked blue...

Here is our little village all done and decorated. We used ice cream cones for the trees and covered them with icing. Makenna's house is the red one.

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Christmas around our house

I am finally getting around to posting some pics of my Christmas decor I did this year. I started strong and then kind of fizzled out, so here is what I have inside. I "festified" my kitchen light fixture with some fresh tree clippings and some snowflake ornaments.
I added some fresh evergreen on this old door too along with a stocking and sign. I just LOVE fresh greenery! I get it FREE from the Christmas tree farm because it is leftover after they trim the trees. It smells so good! I also love the cleanup after Christmas. No storage...just straight to the woods or trash.

My shelf in the kitchen with a snowy scene. I found this wooden lamb at my favorite store before Christmas. He will come back out in the spring for Easter time too.

My mantle is ready for Christmas. I planned to make us all stockings this year, but have not done that yet. Maybe next year??? Santa can fill these again this year.

I made this wreath with some reindeer ornaments I found-$2 for 6 of them. They are glittery, but you can't see it here. I added some cinnamon sticks tied with fabric and some pinecones.

My cookie cutter kitchen tree.

Hot chocolate and goodies in the kitchen. There is nothing better than having a cup of hot chocolate filled with marshmallows in front of the fire with a blanket after all the little elves are tucked into bed!

An old colander with some more greenery and my favorite wooden candy canes with some glass ornaments I filled with fake snow and added some ribbon.

The kids were rolling out the dough for some yummy sugar cookies. They love to eat the dough while they roll them out. I think they must have caught mommy doing that!

Makenna is testing out her creation. It looks yummy! Merry Christmas from our house to yours!

Sunday, December 6, 2009


My little Makenna turned 5 on Dec. 3rd and we celebrated with a "candy store" party. Here is the birthday girl in front of her SWEET table. She is sporting her fancy tooth necklace she got from the dentist.

The table of goodies is ready for some shoppers. Elise helped me set up the table. She is the "jar queen" thank goodness. I had some jars and she let me borrow the rest. Thanks Elise! She also made that adorable candy wreath you see behind the table. I will put that on Makenna's bedroom door for Christmas from now on. It turned out so cute!

It would not be a candy store without a striped scalloped sign so I made this one out of a scrap piece of beadboard that I had in my garage. I cut it with a jigsaw and painted it. I hot glued the lolipop ornament on it. This will now go in her room too.

Here is my niece, Bailey, writing on the chalkboard that we put on the front porch. It will say, "Where all your SWEET dreams come true." Bailey, Alyssa, and Bryce were such a help to me during the party. They wore their cute aprons and worked the candy store and helped with the crafts. I could not have done it without them!

That sweet wreath again. I just love it!

I made this sign from a 97 cent plaque I got from Wal Mart. I cut fabric with pinking shears to make the lollipop. I decopaged the fabric on after I spray painted the plague green. Those fabric candies are what the girls made for the craft.

A yummy view...


My hubby was a real sport and even wore his apron while working the store. He LOVES his little girl and will do anything for her! Thanks honey!

This was their pre "candy binge" snack. I was trying to prevent belly aches. I don't know that it helped any.

Here is the girls making candy bracelets. I used red licorice, life savers, and fruit loops. I wanted them to make neclaces, but the Twizzlers were too short. I would recommend using the shoe string licorice if you can find it. It is longer and tougher than the Twizzlers. They broke easily, but were so cute.

They played "hot cupcake". It is just like hot potato, but using a chenille cupcake. They had fun doing this. They kept wanting to play over and over again.

These are the bags that they took home with their fabric candies they made. I put a label on each one with their name saying "Lilly's Candy Cottage" etc... I am hoping they will go home and use them in their play kitchens to have their own candy store.

Each guest took home one of these. They would need a good tooth brushing after all that candy!

The cupcakes. It looks like a lollipop was stolen! Oh well.

It took Makenna three tries to blow out the candle. She was really trying hard with those puffy cheeks!

Makenna's friend Sarah was enjoying her cupcake. Don't you just love her gingerbread dress? You should have seen her polka dot tights and sparkly shoes. So cute!

I made rainbow cupcakes that I saw on the Whatever blog. They were so fun to make. She put detailed instructions on her blog if you want to try them. You can make a rainbow cake too.

Makenna got her first American Girl doll. This is Kirsten Larson. She is retiring so Makenna asked for her. I NEVER thought I would buy one of these expensive dolls until I went to the store... I had to eat my words!

I can't believe Makenna is 5 already. I still think of her as my baby girl. She brought me to tears when we were making her cupcakes and goodies together. I told her that next year I would be bringing cupcakes to her kindergarten class at school. She said, "yeah, I won't be doing this (baking) with you anymore." I got a lump in my throat when she said that, but I told her that we will just do it together the night before. Makenna is my kindred spirit. We are a lot alike so I understand her and know that her free spirit does not always lead to task completion and organization, but she is so much fun and the things she says keep me laughing! She loves life and appreciates the little things. Her memory of the details amazes me. Thank you Makenna for 5 fun filled years. I look forward to lots more fun birthday parties with you and yes, we will always do the baking together!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Some Holiday Table Inspiration

I attended a candlelight women's dinner at a friend's church and this is my 4th year decorating a table. Each hostess brings their own dishes, glasses, etc. and a centerpiece. It is a fun way to start the holiday season with a dynamic speaker, some laughs, music, and great conversation. But my favorite part is seeing all the tables decorated and lit up. I also enjoy getting to use my pretty dishes and take a break from those paper plates we use way too much. I thought I would take you on a tour of some of the tables....
This is the centerpiece on my table. I used a lantern in the middle of a sparkly, square, pine cone wreath on top of a pedestal and tray.

This was the first time I used my vintage sugar and creamer. I love the color and pattern on them. I am really digging blue and orange these days...

The place setting... I made the runners for a fall table at church and wanted to use them again. I used iron on fusing tape and hot glue to make them...did not feel like sewing.

My friend Kristie's table. That cathedral is an awesome centerpiece and she had huge snowflakes tied on the backs of the chairs from the dollar store. They were so sparkly and pretty!

Here is what I want to do to my Thanksgiving table.

Those are live pansies in the pumpkins and some raffia at the bottom. I have seen these pumpkins at Kirklands and Hobby Lobby I think.

I just love the little corn on the napkins!

A very classic black, white, and red. You will never believe where she got her dishes...

At the DOLLAR STORE of all places along with the mugs and black glasses! I need to shop there more often!

I just love the word "enough" amidst the sparkles.

A sweet soda shop table. She used vintage records as chargers. The ice cream is white carnations.

This tablecloth was my favorite! She used tuille and wire at the bottom.

Another classic black, red, and white. I just love that fabric!

What a cool centerpiece...a dressform with roses! Very inventive.

This centerpiece was so cool. She used a live (but half dead) branch and it looked very "Harvesty"

These chargers are my favorite.

Which table is your favorite? Does this help get you in the mood for some holiday entertaining?