Let the Prep Begin!

Hello everyone!  Today is a bit of a reprieve from the cold snap we’ve been having here in Texas.  I want to continue with the Thanksgiving series that we’ve been discussing and show y’all a couple of my inspiration ideas for my guest room/office project that I’m working on finishing before my family visits at Christmas.

Prepping the dinnerware and decor

One of the biggest time consumers that I’ve run into every year is locating and washing all of the dinnerware and all of those beverage dispensers, table linens, glasses, holiday plates, serving pieces and holiday decor pieces that make an appearance this time of year.  Since I moved recently, most of my items are still in boxes and definitely in need of a good wash! This year isn’t going to be a big event as it has been, but I still want to use my favorite pieces to set a classy table.  I pulled out many of my pieces today and plan to wash everything so that it’s all ready to go and I don’t need to waste time on Thanksgiving doing so.  I also pulled out a few more decor items so that I can create a lovely centerpiece.  This year, I’m planning to use what I have on hand so that I can save money and reduce the accumulation of clutter.  I have been on a kick lately using eBay to sell items that aren’t my style anymore, but that’s for a different post.

By now, you should have your holiday plan, menu, grocery list, clean fridge and pantry, and dinnerware and decor that is clean and ready to go. With about a week left before Thanksgiving, you should be feeling pretty dang organized and ready this year!

Guest Room / Office Inspiration

Changing gears…since I’m not having guests this year until Christmas, I have been actively budgeting and coming up with inspiration ideas.  I’m really into the feminine/modern rooms with pink and gold accents. I’m renting the house I’m in now and downsized a bit from my Virginia house so that I could live in the city, so I need my guest room to serve several functions.  I need some clothing/jewelry storage, craft storage and an office/guest room space.  Here are a few of the spaces that I’ve taken some inspiration from:

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Sources:

http://www.ivyclad.com/2012/06/ikea-snafu-hacks.html

http://home-styling.blogspot.com/p/my-work.html

http://www.casaandcompany.com/home/dress-up-your-desk/

http://emilyaclark.com/2014/02/updating-our-master-bedroom-bedding.html

http://theeverygirl.com/how-to-style-a-desk-3-ways-for-the-student-the-post-grad-the-career-woman

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Holiday Season is Upon Us

Well I don’t know about you all, but I cannot believe that it’s already November!!  This is the busiest time of year for most people, so I decided that this month I’m going to focus on a series of topics and tips that I use to get prepared for the chaos.  I also decided that I’m going to use the next few weeks before Thanksgiving and again between Thanksgiving and Christmas to focus on being healthier and eating better.

My weekend was busy in Dallas, so I didn’t get a chance to prepare for my week as much as normal, but I’ve used tonight to try to do just that.  I got back into my healthy mindset with a short 30 minute run/walk with Muddy.  The weather has just been fabulous here in Houston!  I’ve also been cleaning out the garage since it became a dumping ground after my move.  I promised myself that I’d spend at least 30 minutes  each night cleaning out all my junk, so I did my time in there tonight too.

Holiday Preparedness

Make a Plan

I think it’s so important to get your ducks in a row, so the first step that I’m going to talk about is making a plan.  The holidays are a time of joy but they can also be quite stressful if you don’t get organized and don’t have a plan.  What I do at the beginning of November is sit down with a big pot of coffee and just write down ideas, important dates/events that I’m already aware of and a list of things that I need to accomplish or purchase.  I update my calendar with any dates that I need to save and any self-imposed deadlines.  This is also the time of year when I schedule the last of my health appointments and my holiday haircut since dates quickly fill up and many people take leave.

This year the holidays are very exciting for me because it is my first Texas holiday season.  I can’t wait to check out all the things going on in the city during this time!  Since I’ll have family visiting this year, my plan includes designing and finishing the guest room’s decor and organization.  As of now, it’s a disaster!  Don’t worry…I plan to have lots of before and after photos once I finish it all!  Since it hasn’t been that long since I moved in, my plan also consists of finishing my living room gallery wall, styling up the deck for the mild winter evenings (love it) and finishing cleaning out the garage.  This winter, I’ll be focusing on organization but more on that after the holidays!  I listed out a few items that I need to purchase for the guest room such as holiday bedding and new pillows.  As I organize everything, I’m also setting aside a donation box and eBay sale box. This is a great time to add in a reminder for any charitable donations you may want to make.

Once you have your overall plan in place, you can tweak it as necessary, but it’ll make for a great basis to keep you sane!  Good luck on those plans!  You’ll feel so much more organized once you have it done…trust me!

Keep reading this week for my next tip on how to plan for Thanksgiving dinner.

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.