All that Sparkles…

My holiday theme this year is “Let it Snow” and I’ve been working to get all of my outdoor decor up over the past few days while dodging ice and snow outside.  My color scheme this year is teal, navy and silver with white lights.  I wanted my house to sparkle when the white lights shine on all of the fun final touches.  One of those details is the wreath below.  I have been in love with the Pottery Barn ornament wreath for the past couple years, but I just have not been able to bring myself to pay $80 for it.  This year I decided I’d tried my hand at my own version and I absolutely LOVE how it turned out!

Supplies

  • 1 wreath form (I used a large styrofoam one with a flat back because to me it resembled snow)
  • Shatterproof ornaments (I bought a large box from Target that were on sale)
  • Glue gun / glue
  • Optional – Bow (I bought my glitter bow at Michael’s 50% off)

Step 1

I laid the wreath form flat while I worked and decided that I wanted a somewhat random look to my ornament layout.

Step 2

Once I had a good visual idea, I used the end of the ornament ball (where you would normally hang it from) and pushed it into the styrofoam.  Then I hot glued each one into place.  A word of advice is that you have to be patient with the ornaments because some took a little extra glue to get them to hold well.  I worked my way around the wreath form and I left a space at the bottom of the wreath where the bow would cover it.

Step 3

After letting the glued ornaments set overnight, I added the glitter bow as my finishing touch.

Step 4

Hang on the door & enjoy!

This wreath took me about 30 minutes to make and the best part is that it cost me about $20 to complete!  Be sure to use Michael’s weekly coupons and check out the holiday sales for good deals on ornaments.

 

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Ice..Ice…Baby

Hi everyone…I woke up this morning to a winter wonderland!  Everything had a nice sheen of ice coating it and the roads were very dangerous!  I am so glad that I put my Christmas lights up last night!  Here are a couple pictures of how beautiful my neighborhood was this morning:

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Even Muddy was in awe!  Hopefully tomorrow will be back to normal but more snow is forecast.  Stay tuned this week for some Christmas decorating ideas…

 

 

Colonial Williamsburg

Hope y’all had a nice weekend!  I decided to head down to Colonial Williamsburg, VA for a couple days with some friends.  I haven’t spent much time down there before, so I thought it might be fun and I was on the hunt for Christmas treasures.  We spent most of the day at the Colonial Williamsburg living history museum.  Now, I’ve lived in Virginia for over a decade and I found this quite interesting but also very fun!  Plus, the Christmas decorations added extra charm!  The actors are extremely knowledgable and in each building that you enter you hear quite a bit about what life was like in the colony.  Basically the entire colony has been reconstructed; often on the original building foundations that have been discovered.  You can walk around the colony and enter buildings at your leisure.  My favorite was the governor’s palace, but it was getting dark and since there are no lights inside the buildings it was very hard to see.  I also thought that a lot of very interesting information was provided during the tour of the capitol building.  There were even several young children who marched through town as part of a fife & drum band!

I would recommend Colonial Williamsburg to young and old alike, however I would definitely be sure to pack snacks and appropriate clothing. We were hungry and froze, but after dark here are a few bonfires that you can warm yourself by. There are a few restaurants in Merchant Square that are good, however there were very long waits.  If you like to shop like I do then you will love milling around in the shops where many of the wares that are produced by the colony workers are also sold.  Colonial Williamsburg is an interesting historical peek into life during this time period in Virginia and the experience will be sure to leave you with a greater appreciation for how our country began.

After touring the colony, we headed to Christmas Town at Busch Gardens.  This was pretty cool and if you have small kids, they would absolutely love it!  The park is decorated with over 6 million lights and most sections of the park have a different country for its theme.  One section was called “Holiday Hills,” which ended up being my favorite because it was decorated with retro Christmas decorations and reminded me of my childhood.  Does that mean I’m old if it was supposedly the “retro” section?  Oh no…….!  Just as with Colonial Williamsburg, I’d recommend making sure you have enough warm clothing with you as it does get very cold after the sun goes down.  The park has several heated eating and entertainment areas, so it’s not hard to get warm if you need to.  The rides that are open can be very chilly too.  We took the train around part of the park and just about froze, but it was really fun because everyone was singing Christmas carols together!

Williamsburg is also home to The College of William & Mary and as such, you will find it to be a quaint college town where people stroll the square with their morning coffee while they walk their dogs and explore the farmer’s market.  The city is fairly close to Virginia Beach and there is also a settlement at Jamestown to explore.  I haven’t done that part yet, but hopefully once it warms up some I’ll get a chance to come back down to check it out and let y’all know how it is.  In the summertime, I’ve heard that the water park Great Country U.S.A. and Busch Gardens are a blast!  There is also a Great Wolf Lodge that many people stay at if they have children…I’ve heard there is an indoor water park there too.

Whether you’re from Virginia or not you will find Williamsburg relaxing and very interesting.  I’ve been to a few living history museums around the area, but Williamsburg is the largest and most well done that I’ve been to so far.  Hopefully this post will give you a few ideas if you were also planning on heading down this way.

Turkey Day Decor

photo-4It has become tradition to host Thanksgiving for any friends who do not have family close by. This year dinner was at my house and we had a fantastic time!  As you can see from the picture to the left, someone was anxious for dinner!  I hope all of you had a great time with your family and friends.  I wanted to share a couple easy entertaining and decor ideas that I put together the night before dinner that made a big impact (I procrastinate but I also have a full-time job, so that’s my excuse).

COCKTAIL BAR

I put together this cocktail bar and stocked it with fun paper straws in fall colors, glasses, non-alcoholic and alcoholic drinks, a wine opener, cocktail napkins and a beverage dispenser full of ice water so that my guests could help themselves while I was in the kitchen.  My favorite part of the cocktail bar was the takeout containers.  I had some fun takeout boxes and containers with baker’s twine and late-night snack tags for my guests to mark their containers with.  I found these free printables at Bloom Designs Online.

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TABLE SETTINGS

I used items around the house that I already had on hand so that I did not have to spend any additional money on our table settings.  Often I like to have fresh flowers on the table, but this year I changed it up and used a tan linen table runner as my foundation.  Next, I added a hurricane full of sparkly bronze pinecones to the center of the table and then strung a fall-colored leaf garland along the table and added a few tealights.  For the place settings, I used some bronze-colored fleur-de-lis chargers from Southern Living at HOME, Pottery Barn catering plates and tied each set of silverware with burgundy satin ribbon in the center of each plate.  I added my wine glasses with fun travel-themed Pottery Barn wine charms that I got last year on clearance.  I was so happy with how it came out and the best part was that it cost me nothing and it only took about 10 minutes to put it all together!

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DINNER

Dinner was awesome….but soooo much food!  Honestly, we probably could’ve scaled it back quite a bit, but all of my friends like to cook too and we all like to make sure we have our favorites on the table.  I think I could basically live off of cranberries and sweet potatoes!  Even Muddy got a special turkey dinner mixed with some veggies.  He was in a tryptophan coma too after dinner!  I wanted to share one of my favorite that will continue to be a staple on my table for years to come.  This chorizo cornbread stuffing dish is courtesy of Rachel Ray, but it’s the perfect Southern compliment to any holiday meal.

COMA TIME

Once dinner hit us all and started to make us sleepy, we tuned in to watch a little football together and relax.  One fun addition that I added this year was Turkey Day Bingo!  I found some free printable cards here at The Orange Co. and we had fun playing a couple rounds.  The winner even got a $10 iTunes gift card!  I think it was a nice touch, but next year it would be fun to make up my own cards with funny things that are near and dear to me and my friends.

Hope you all had a wonderful holiday!

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Kitchen Sink Eggs

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I have been training for a Disney half-marathon, but the weather is turning cold here and tonight was a struggle to get my run in.  I am definitely beat tonight, but I thought I’d share a quick post-workout paleo meal.

I love breakfast for dinner so for my version of kitchen sink eggs, I sauté a little spinach in EVOO and toss in any veggies that I have on hand.  Tonight I tossed in mushrooms and sundried tomatoes with the spinach.  Once the veggies cooked down I poured in whisked eggs, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes to taste & then sprinkled on mozzarella (I know this is not 100% paleo).  This would also be great with a little chorizo or bacon mixed in.

Ta-da! A healthy dinner in about 5 minutes!