Saturday, December 22, 2012

bell jar ornaments

We were inspired by these awesome ornaments and decided to make our own. Check the link for great photos and a tutorial on how to make your own using plastic wineglasses from the dollar store!

I used the paper doll illustration from Claudine and made little Shrinky Dink Alfredos. We made about a dozen of these and could easily make more.

Alfredo made most of the scenes himself and then we used a bit of Snow Tex on the base. It was a quick and easy project and the results are dazzling.  

Alfredo made this one for my niece who was married this year.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

christmas gifts and preparations...

I'm thinking about the Sandy Hook families and their great grief. I'm praying for peace for them this Christmas. It seems so out of place to continue about the business of Christmas preparations and share them here. Still, I have my dear little one, his eyes full of wonder, counting down the days. I can't let him down. And I know you are trying to do the same for your loved ones. I hope you won't find it too indelicate to go on.

Let me show you the very simple nativity we made together...

I found these larger pegs here when I was buying tiles for the nativity puzzle. I had the idea that they might make a sweet touchable nativity for Alfredo. I'd also thought it would make a good gift but we ran out of time to make more.

Alfredo is still working on his. He messed up a little and had to repaint Mary and Joseph's faces. Plus we still need to make their head wraps. But, my goodness, The Baby Jesus's unibrow is so adorable! Can you get over it?

I have lots more to show you. I'll take breaks in between the wrapping and the cleaning to share more with you.

Monday, December 17, 2012

so sad

Last night, I held my little angel a little closer, feeling the warmth of his plump cheek on my lips and sending up a prayer for all those families who would do anything to do the same with their sweet babies. It's so incredibly heart-wrenching, the nightmare of Sandy Hook. I wish we could go back in time and somehow save all those sweet little children and heroic adults.
I had lots of fun things to show you, gifts we've made, decorations, and pictures, but it just doesn't seem right to go about that happy business in the wake of that tragedy. It's just so sad.

Friday, December 14, 2012

home for Christmas...

Here's a little peek at our home decorated for Christmas.
Hope you are enjoying all the preparations for the big day. We sure are!

Thursday, December 13, 2012

a few of my favorite things...

I think everyone has favorite pieces that they look forward to seeing every year as they deck their are some of mine.

I love this old shoe stuffed with goodies. I bought it years and years ago at a local craft fair and, as we were just starting out, it was a bit of a splurge. I'm so glad I bought is my favorite!

Another cherished item, this limited edition Santa by Nicol Sayre was a gift from my Debbie's mom years ago. He is so sweet and simple...and I love that he's holding a little doll. 

This started out as an ornament tree from Rachel Ashwell, purchased many seasons ago from Target. (I think it was the same year as her first release there!) Unfortunately, it wasn't packed away properly once and many of the ornaments broke. This year, I decided to add some of my vintage ones and I love how it turned out! I added a fabulous vintage Christmas corsage to the top...isn't that a lovely spot for it?
Show us a few of your favorite things! Do a blog post on them and link it up in the comments! It'll be fun to take a tour of them. 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

our little elf

Santa sent us all these super cute elf pajamas as an early Christmas gift. I'll see if I can get Rich to agree to a picture of us all but for now, enjoy this adorable little elf (complete with bedhead and a little breakfast drip)

Saturday, December 8, 2012

nativity puzzle

I'm really into printables this year. Have you noticed? This is another printable from Caravan. I'm making these little nativity puzzles as gifts for Alfredo's little friends. With 20 to make, I figured I'd better get started. Aren't they looking sweet?

Friday, December 7, 2012

gingerbread houses

Whole Foods is selling pre-constructed gingerbread houses. They are perfect for people like Alfredo and me who only really want to decorate the house. Plus they are super solid and, according to Alfredo, delicious. (Also a little pricey at $18 each....shhh...don't tell Rich)
A quick stop by Walmart to pick up favorite find are the cute marshmallows shaped like ice cream cones, cupcakes, and pink and white swirls. At less than a dollar a bag, maybe I made up for the splurge on the house.
I covered the roof with strawberry Frosted Mini Wheats. And isn't the cupcake chimney cute?

Alfredo did a little more licking and eating than actual house decoration. This might be a bit of a work in progress..both the decorating part and the eating part!

Thursday, December 6, 2012


I snapped this picture the other night while I was cooking dinner. Alfredo just looked so sweet and so small sitting under to the tree, playing with the train.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

another Christmas countdown...

We've had so much fun with this already! This is another printable, this time from our friend Claudine. It's a cute little cut-and-fold paper train. Claudine gave me the great idea to make 24 boxes and make it into an advent train. There are all sorts of treasures in those boxes, from pencil toppers to chocolate coins. I put the numbers on randomly after I filled the boxes so it's a surprise to me each day, too! I think this one is Alfredo's favorite.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

not a creature was stirring...

We have 4 different countdowns going at once for the big day. What can I say...I love 'em! This one is a new favorite...

It's a printable, found here.
Here's the idea: You put little two-sided mice cut-outs into their little each day passes, one by one, you flip the mice over, put them to bed. Get it? "Not a creature was stirring"
There's a tab at the bottom of each mouse where you can include a message. I wrote a different fun Christmas activity for us to do each day.

Some of the activities include drawing Christmas pictures together, decorating our little room for Christmas, going to see Santa, driving to see the Christmas lights, and making fudge, cookies, etc.

Isn't it adorable?

Monday, December 3, 2012

house of joy class

I had such a great time making this house in the class Pam and Eileen taught together on Saturday. The house is from a die that Eileen designed for Sizzix. (Unfortunately, the die has been discontinued but it can probably still be found out there somewhere. Sizzix is constantly adding new products to their lines so older designs are frequently discontinued.) I love Eileen's style and can't wait to see what she has up her sleeve in the way of new designs.


Pam's part of the class was to help us embrace our own handwriting, in doodle form, and add that to our house. Truth be told, going into the class, I was certain that I would not be writing on my house. (I really don't like my handwriting.) But with Pam's guidance and gentle encouragement, I was soon getting the hang of it. And I liked what I did! As Pam says, practice, practice, practice! I'll keep at it and make my doodle script even better. If you ever have a chance to take a class with Pam, I really encourage you to do so.  Eileen, too! In fact, I'll probably see you there!