Perhaps you can picture a little girl, with blond hair and blue eyes. The wonder of Christmas morning evident on her face. Racing her siblings down the stairs, to the tree, to see what gifts were waiting. Knowing full well, in her home, a BIG breakfast always came first! Seems rather torturous, but a tradition, none the less. Every year, the magic of Christmas comes alive when the tree goes up. It is a time of reflection, a time of hope, a time of giving, and a time to receive. I love getting gifts as much as I love receiving them. Presents are not a huge part of Christmas morning. Perhaps as much out of necessity as a belief that it is important to take the focus off materialism and put it right back where it belongs and that is in the sharing of love and laughter within the four walls in which we reside.
One of our family traditions is a new ornament on the tree for each person. Have to have a cowboy for my Cowboy.
The primary focus this year, was handmade ornaments. I spent a lot of time creating them, but in the end I am pleased with the results!
All our favorite ornaments we have collected through the years have been added. A simple burlap garland adorns the branches.
This year I wanted to create a basic tree skirt which I could add to or change up in years to come. I do not see the point of changing it out and buying or making a new one yearly. I haven't had a new skirt in over ten years, so it was time. There are so many You Tube and online tutorials on how to create your own skirt, if you are interested. I don't use a pattern, so I am not sure me trying to explain how to accomplish this task would be easy! I just love the white muslin and burlap!
Though I had a "theme" (and I use this term very loosely) this year, there are still some family favorites such as the bright yellow wooden star which stands out! Each of us has favorites, which invoke all the feelings of the season.
As I was finishing up this post tonight, I received a call from my oldest son. I am blessed to discover he has proposed to his sweetheart, and we have the added gift of a beautiful young woman who will be joining our family. My cup runneth over... again.
Pierre was so nervous! He and Juliette had been writing back and forth for the last year. They had met during his year abroad while he was attending school as a foreign exchange student at her American University. Pierre had landed a job as a teacher's aide for French 101 and had planned to be thoroughly bored to tears. Juliette had saved him from death by boredom. Never had he met anyone as vivacious and focused as she, nor as lovely! Never had he seen anyone struggle as she had with learning another language. No matter how many hours of tutelage and extra help she was given, she passed the class with a C. Juliette had won his heart, and they spent the year exploring, her sharing her life and love of her beautiful country with him. After a year apart he was ready to make the important phone call.
Pierre was an old fashioned kind of gentlemen. He loved the lost art of letter writing, and wrote to Juliette every few days. Juliette was quirky and wrote him back via email... every time! Finally, she had agreed to join him in Paris, for Christmas. (You can purchase these lovely Balsam Ornaments HERE )
Pierre's heart was racing wildly, hoping Juliette would say yes. Little did he know, she had a gift of her own. The key to her heart!
Neither could believe how one little phone call from Paris, could change their lives forever...and they never would forget Christmas in Paris!
I hope you have enjoyed my silly little story! I had to find some way to use those ridiculous little kissing frogs this year!
Our bedside Christmas In Paris Vignette made the Cowboy smile...and that has been worth all the silliness! Happy Holidays Everyone!
What does being home for the Holidays look like to you and your loved ones? Add your picture below! Three prizes will be given. It can be anything from a recipe, to decorating, to pictures of playing in the snow. Just be creative!
Each Winner will receive handmade goodies from me :) You will need to be able to contact me with your mailing info to be eligible. In the event winner does not contact me with mailing info another winner will be randomly drawn. Limit 3 entries per household. Each entry must be different (cannot be the same picture)
Dont have a blog? No problem! You can still enter! You can upload your photo to your Pinterest and provide it as the URL link (upload your pic, click on it, go to address bar, highlight address, right click and copy, right click and paste into URL section here). If you do not have a Pinterest account ... it is an easy and fun way to collect ideas and information! Best of all it is free!
Post Your Link Here
Share On Facebook, Twitter, and/or Pinterest
Add a link to THIS party in your post (You can use the picture below!)
First Prize: My family will vote on their favorite picture... this should be interesting! There will be NINE of us voting!
The Winner will receive a set of seven heart shaped balsam sachet ornaments featured HERE in my Etsy Shop 'Cowgirls Chic Boutique'
Second Prize: One of you will be randomly drawn.
The Winner will receive two Balsam sachet, handmade by me as shown on my Etsy Shop Cowgirls Chic Boutique (Ribbon and button style may vary)
Third Prize will be voted on by YOU. Here and on the FB page. So in the comment section here, leave the number and title of your favorite picture which says "Home For The Holidays To You" YES, you can vote on your own! In the event there are less than ten votes, third prize will be chosen at Random.
The winner will receive one mini lavender bouquet glass ornament as seen HERE in my Etsy Shop 'Cowgirls Chic Boutique'
I must apologize. I messed up the linky and had to resubmit it so you can get your pictures up! I want others to see your pretty pics!
As a little girl , books were my gateway into another world. I could travel to cities such as Paris, the forests of India, or into the secret garden of a little girl in England. I longed for the day I'd have a secret place of my own, to lie under the stars on a warm summers night, or sit in a gazebo in the dead of winter watching the snow twinkle under the light of the moon, holding hands with whoever my sweetheart would some day be.
The little girl is all grown up and has three beautiful daughters of her own. My fondest memories of their childhoods have been sharing my love of books and gardens with them. As they grew, they loved to sit in the small gardens we created in Montana. We would play amongst the lavender, mint, peonies, and roses, making plans for our someday secret hideaway.
It is in honor of my three beautiful daughters, I created a simple dream winter secret garden scene. Someday we will sit in a gazebo, bundled warmly, watching the snow fall together. (Tip: Epson salts, medium grain, makes the best faux snow..ever! It glistens!)
Bare branches, white lights, small rustic bells, and little white ornaments bring this dreamy scene to life. Can't you just feel Jack Frost nipping at your nose?
Mason jars embellished with rustic bells, filled with epson salt (to create faux snow), and then tea lights burning in little crystal votives create a layered effect.
The overall effect is simple and lovely. The only new items I purchased for this scene were battery operated lights (2.99), the faux berries (I got an entire set I am using multiple places for under $10), and the $1 wreath. My focus this year has been on celebrating family and home without spending a lot of money. It has been interesting to challenge myself not to buy this and that to embellish or add to this years decorating. I am enjoying the beautiful simplicity and the feeling I am being more responsible with resources.
It was easy to create burlap balls.Someone had given us plastic ornaments which were never going to be used, or so I thought. I cut strips of burlap and carefully hot glued them in random fashion. Pine cones are easy to collect. Add a little watered down Elmer's glue and sprinkle on some epson salt and they are wintery additions! Pip berries and the white ornaments tied the whole basket together.
All in all a sweet, simple, little space to welcome guests and hang my hat!
As a little girl, I loved the carol Silent Night. As a mother I loved any night that was silent. When my home is quiet and darkness has settled over the land, it is the time in which I am most creative.
As I decorated my favorite home space and the area which most represents family to me, I listened to my favorite group, Celtic Woman, and let my creativity flow. In the silence of this night, I am most thankful for the gift of my loved ones.
All Is Calm...All is bright
Faux berries are inexpensive and a great way to add a festive air to your home for the Holidays. Epson salt sparkles like newly fallen snow when the candle light hits it. I don't care to move everything I already have out, so I work with the colors I have in each room. (Soy candles are inexpensive to make particularly in a canning jar, as I have done here)
A dollar store wreath, strip of burlap, keys I already had (which I purchased on Etsy, and some faux pip berries made an adorable arrangement for under $15.
Faux Berries, Hurricane lantern ( I already owned and found on clearance at Pier One), and a homemade soy candle are just a few simple ways to bring a lot of color and winter feel to an area!
Sleep In Heavenly Peace....
I'll be using very simple wrapping paper this year. You can recycle old paper bags as well! I purchased a roll of brown paper from our local "everything" store.
Lovebirds in front of a burlap covered candle holder. The holder says "Bloom" which doesn't work for winter holidays, so I just covered it up. You don't have to buy something new, or move to many things around. You can just get a little creative with what you have on hand.
Simplicity can be beautiful. There is no need to stretch your budget! Use the extra time you save to create memories for your loved ones.
You can Pin The Picture above to let your friends know about our Linky Party Contest The more the merrier!
Do you remember lying under the Christmas tree as a child, falling asleep with the twinkling lights overhead, and the smell of pine filling the air around you? Of all the memories from yesteryear, the Holiday Season was the most magical.
When I decorate my home, particularly this time of year, it is to invoke just a little of that magic back into my life and hopefully create a little of it in my children so their memories are as warm and bright as mine are.
An easy and inexpensive way to add a little "magic" is by making a banner. You can Google a pattern for a banner. I used muslin I had on hand, printed the letters and traced them with a pencil onto the fabric. Now here is the EASY part... fill them in with a brown permanent marker. It looks stamped on... no way it looks like a marker! I then sewed them together and strung a piece of Jute through it.
The pink berries tie it into the colors I already have in my living room and gave it precisely the finishing touches I needed. I paid under $10 for the "pip berries" and can use them through many seasons.
Embrace the magic of the season and enjoy every moment, every memory you have with those you love.
My favorite time of year... I get giddy with excitement! I love the carols, cider, cold, snow, and good will toward all men. I love that we many of us dedicate this time as a time of giving and only wish our hearts were of this frame of mind year around!
This year, I am all about using what you have on hand! I don't want to purchase ANYTHING new to decorate our home this Holiday season (or at least a bare minimum)! The star was printed off using pic monkey for the lettering. I used a roll of brown paper cut to the size of copy paper. I then pasted it to a piece of cardboard and hung it with Jute twine!
Burlap is something I have in abundance as I have been using it for ornaments on my online Etsy Shop "Cowgirls Chic Boutique" and in local boutiques. I took an old frame, cut different lengths and widths strips of burlap and then tied them to the frame! I decided this is something I could change seasonally by hanging something from it!
Severeal years ago I came across a bag of the greenery at a yard sale! I use it every year! This year, I looped white lights on it and tied pinecones I collected with Jute twine.
Last years brown ornaments have been updated. I just clipped the gold thread I had used previously and tied them up with Jute. A roll at our local hardware store is under $3! I keep it on hand here for all my projects! I am going with what I have this year! Wait until you see my tree with the other ornaments I have made!
Anyone who knows me ... knows walking into my home is like walking onto the set of a musical! There is always music playing... and this time of year my home is filled with the wonderful sounds of laughter, carols, and a grumble or two from the cowboy (every story must have a scrooge and we love ours!) So, this year I used some scraps of musical instrument fabric I am using for my daughter's stocking and I made these adorable balsam filled ornaments! If you do not have balsam... you can use dried lavender or even cotton stuffing!
Not everything I do turns out perfectly! I spent quite a bit of time hot gluing that coffee filter tree together... and I have the burns to prove it! It leans and according to my children looks more like a pine cone... but we are going with it anyways!
In keeping with the colors I am already using in my living room, I added buttons and burlap to another frame.
Every year, in our home sweet home, getting out the Nativity Scene marks the beginning of the Holiday Season. Please check back in over the next few weeks... We have sooo much more planned!