Friday, December 24, 2010

happy holidays!

i hope you have the most wonderful holiday and time off from work [and gifts]! we'll be running all over town the next 2 days between our two families but i'm excited to see everyone. j and i have my 5-year-old niece natalie over - we went driving around last night with hot chocolate to look at all of the christmas lights. we had a blast!

i also hope you stay warm this holiday! surprisingly we may even get a white christmas tomorrow in atlanta (which is very rare) - fingers crossed!

now we need to get back to baking and decorating sugar cookies! yay for christmas eve!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

if you want to be happy

i am a huge fan of this print from marykate mcdevitt. i love the graphics but mostly i love the quote. with the new year coming up, this quote will be my mantra and my inspiration. although i am a very happy person, i think we could all afford to truly make up our minds to be more content. ♥

giving back

these days i can't help but feel so lucky: good health, stability, and love are so full around me. this time of year always reminds me just how lucky i am with a home to keep me warm, presents under the tree, and chances to brighten other peoples' days.

a few coworkers and i decided to adopt a family for the holidays - we actually decided on 2 different families. we worked together and were able to get lots of people from our company to help donate funds. with the money we raised, we were able to go shopping and buy some great gifts for these 2 families (7 people total) who may not have had a christmas this year. we ended up going through a nonprofit organization, families first, who was great to work with.

here is one of the piles of toys as we were delivering the gifts. my coworker was able to snap these few pictures - thanks jen!

i really hope that the families have a wonderful christmas and thanks to everyone who helped support this great cause! i can't wait to do it again next year. by the way, buying for all of the kids was so much fun! i wish we could see the kids' faces christmas morning!

how do you give back during the holidays? any annual charitable traditions that you share with your loved ones?

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

deck the halls

even though the holidays are only 3 days away, i wanted to share our holiday decorations! the house has felt so inviting that it's sad that we'll be taking everything down in just a few weeks.

below is our front door. i added some bells to our real wreath and it's so lovely. by the way, please ignore the hideous stairs (we will be painting them this spring).

our cute countdown snowman is a nice reminder that christmas is around the corner (as you can see this picture was taken a while back).

and one last shot of our tree since no christmas would be the same without a tree. although it's starting to fade quickly it still makes me smile every time i look at it.

i love growing our christmas decoration collection and now i just have to figure out where to store everything once the holidays are over. we've also been burning some great woodwick candles to keep the house smelling like the holidays and listening to sufjan steven's christmas cd. since christmas is only once a year, you might as well go big or go home, right?

now we just need to watch "a charlie brown christmas" and "a christmas story" with some hot chocolate and it'll really feel complete.

"i have always thought of christmas time, when it has come round, as a good time; a kind, forgiving, charitable time; the only timei know of, in the long calendar of the year, when men and women seem by one consent to open their shut-up hearts freely, and to think of people below them as if they really were fellow passengers to the grave, and not another race of creatures bound on other journeys" - charles dickens

Tuesday, December 21, 2010


this is the craziest thing i've seen in a while so i thought i'd share. i never really thought i needed one but now i may be reconsidering my need an iphone!

what's your favorite advantages to having an iphone or android?

Monday, December 20, 2010

local is the new black

i can't believe it's the week of christmas! only 5 days left! i am so excited to give my loved ones their gifts and for the days off!

speaking of days off, j and i took off last friday to head up to asheville, nc with his family. i planned the getaway for his birthday and then we brought his mom, dad, and sister as their christmas present. we all had a blast and lots of adventures (most surrounded getting my nissan versa hatchback up and down the dang icy mountain)! i have to upload my pictures so i can share them - this is when having an android or iphone would be ideal.

anyways, we spent one day walking around and shopping in downtown asheville and we saw these adorable signs in a lot of the store windows. i love the prints and wished i had gotten a tshirt - oh well! either way i'll post more about our trip but i can't wait to go back!

tonight i'm hosting a small cookie swap with some girlfriends. great friends, wine, and cookies - do you need anything else? have a wonderful [short] week! xo

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

naughty or nice

j and i got our christmas tree the other weekend and i couldn't wait to get the house ready for the holidays. although i grew up with plastic, fake trees, j always had a real one. now that i've had a real tree, i could never go back to having a fake tree - the real ones smell so lovely! we always get douglas fir's because they smell better, but they are really getting hard to find! since fraiser fir's are the norm, we could only find a handful of places with the douglas fir's. we actually found ours at home depot and it is perfect!

even other patrons were telling us what a beautiful tree it was so that must say something!

we even put out the new lighted houses (one is a cute little pub) to add some more lights to the living room.

the house feels so cozy and with the snow flurries over the past 2 days, it made me not want to leave the house. being sick didn't help that either!

p.s. while sick, i managed to watch all of dexter season 5 in 2 days - yes, 12 hours in 2 days! it was awesome and this season was really good. if you've never gotten on the dexter bandwagon you are missing out my friends! check out michael c hall's appearance on jimmy fallon belowing singing a dexter version of "santa clause is coming to town" - so clever!

by the way, after the excitement of the final episodes last night and all things dexter, it was really hard to wake up and see this in the news!

Friday, December 3, 2010

feeling crafty

i'm so excited it's december! we've already started decorating a bit and we're getting our tree this weekend. i can't wait to share some pictures! this time of the year really is so wonderful.

i really want to try making some of our own ornaments this year and who better to turn to than martha stewart!

here are some of the ornaments and decorations that would be so fun to make from her site.

1. cinnamon bird ornament

2. doily ornament

3. beaded snowflakes

4. stiffened doilies snowflakes

5. evergreen bobeches

6. cookie cutter ornaments

here's to a cozy weekend filled with crafts, cider, loved ones, and holiday music! ♥

p.s. our windows are being replaced on our house as i type this and i'm so excited! they look so great so far and i can't wait to show the finished pictures!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

murray as a muse

these bill murray prints by derek eads would be a great gift for the holidays! they are super cute and very affordable.

[images via flavorwire]

my favorite is the last print with all of the different bill murrays. i'd have to say the one from kingpin is hilarious!
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