Archive for the ‘Holiday’ Category

Bored Yet?

Most of you with ample vacation time are spending an elongated holiday with family and friends. But after the presents are opened and the cheese ball has been consumed you may find yourself wondering, ‘ummm what’s next?’

If it was up to our family, we’d spend all of the time sitting around the table catching up on community happenings and reminiscing on old family stories. However, with the induction of my brother-in-law and now my dear husband we’ve officially become a game family.

Here is a collection of some of our favorites:

Card/Dice games

Board games:

What are the ways your family enjoy their time together? Have you adopted new procedures as the family keeps adding members?


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Merry Christmas

We are going to sign off early this week to steal a few extra moments to enjoy the ones we love and I encourage you to do the same.  Simply stop with the wrapping, baking, and cooking, take a moment to sit with the ones you love. (or at least convince them to wrap, bake or cook with you)

Merry Christmas,

Laura & Cody

Andrea & Adam

Christmas scripture readings:

Isaiah 9.6, Matthew 1. 18-25, Luke 2.4-14, John 1.14

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Image Courtesy of Purl Bee

As Andrea and I discussed doing a gift guide for those newly married we kept coming across so many great guides featuring perfect present for in laws, husbands and of course ourselves. The emails flew back and forth, ‘did you see this’, ‘oh my this is so pretty’… so let us point the way to you to some of the best gift guides out there.

For us wives: Design Sponge, under $25

For our husbands:  My Life Scope

For the Inlaws: The Nest

For the Techie: Think Geek

For the new homeowner to the sports aficionado:  Our Poverty with a View

For the traveler: ReadyMade

For the kiddos: Cup of Jo

For Handmade gifts: Fresh Home or Etsy

For everyone else on your list: Real Simple

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Christmas cira 1979

The first holiday season as a couple can be tricky.  Yet through the years we find our way through tangled lights and broken ornaments to establish what the holiday season is to us.

My good friend Amanda was generous enough to share with us her experience of finding their way to celebrate the season.

Last Christmas was my first as a married woman, and I learned a few lessons, both on marriage and on style. As a new homeowner, I had done little else but pour over pages of of Better Homes and Gardens, Real Simple and Pottery Barn as I dreamed of all the redecorating plans I had for my new house. Though my husband, Nate, in his characteristically cheerful and optimistic way, thought our new house was pretty great just the way it was, he agreed I should have “carte blanche” when it came to the decorating. Good deal, right?

We got along fine like this for several months. Our seemingly daily trips to Menard’s and Lowe’s changed however in early November when visions of sugar plums began dancing in Nate’s head as we passed the Christmas decoration displays. “I can’t wait for Christmas!” he said, as he pointed out gold Mylar garlands, multi-colored Santa displays and lights that flashed in coordination with music.

Was he serious? This stuff was unbelievably tacky! My face must have said it all, because he quickly said, “I think you should let ME be in charge of Christmas cheer. I know about what looks festive.” I was dubious to say the least, but Christmas decorating was pretty low on my priority list right then.

Image Courtesy of Zellaby on Flickr

We went back and forth like this for a few weeks, but when Nate eagerly pulled out his Christmas decorations I was horrified! He had a story about memories of the origins of each childhood ornament. He even had the lights – large, multicolored, screw-in bulbs and those old plastic bubble-lights with the liquid inside that actually bubbles!

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18 Days of Advent

Last week Laura shared her advent-ure and today, our dear friend bo shares about her and her husband Tim’s first Christmas tradition.
Sometimes you get to be the most creative in the middle of a project when things aren’t going well. In this project, for instance, my poor math skills were the problem. I was so excited to make this advent calendar as a way that my new husband, Tim, and I would celebrate the Christmas season, that I miscalculated the number of days that would fit on the bulletin boards. (I thought 6 x 3 = 24, but as you math scholars know, 8 x 3 = 24.)

So, my creative solution to this problem was to celebrate 18 days of Advent. We are starting on day 7, and every day we get to hang an ornament on the tree.
I also wanted my Advent calendar to be more than a count down to Christmas, I wanted to actually prepare my heart and mind for Jesus’ birth. (I usually don’t think about how Jesus fits into the candy canes and mistletoe until Christmas Eve.) I took 18 Old Testament prophesies of Christ and stuffed them in wax paper envelopes with patterned paper covering them. So every day I get to anticipate Jesus’ birth just like the Jews did who awaited their Messiah. –Sara bo Laehn

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Oh Christmas Tree…

It took a week to get our tree decorated, but it was worth the wait! Getting a real tree has been a process. We bought the tree last weekend, and after we got a stand and got it in the house I didn’t feel like decorating. So I got lights and a tree skirt during the week and we decorated on Saturday.

Every year Adam and I get a special ornament. This year, I went a little overboard and got several felt ornaments from West Elm (I couldn’t resist, and there was free shipping!). But the A and the C are the official ornaments for 2010. Do you have special ornaments or traditions?

I’m trying not to be crazy about the pine needles. I know it’s not necessary to vacuum everyday. I’m sure no one but me even notices them, right?  One of the fun things about this Christmas, is that it’s our first year celebrating in our house, so I got to find new places to put things. I especially loved hanging our stocking from our fireplace mantel. We had a gas fireplace with a mantel in the condo, but there’s something even more special about a wood mantel and a wood-burning fireplace.

One of my favorite things is to come home after work and see the lights on the tree (Adam works at home, so he turns the lights on at 5).

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Here are some of my favorite non-traditional Christmas trees.

Cardboard Cut Out: Featured in this year’s West Elm catalog. I love the whimsical nature of this dandy and the fact that at the end of the season you can just toss it in the recycle bin! Ya Hoo!

Painter’s Tape Portrait: I’m having trouble finding the true creator of this tree but rumor has it, this was from West Elm’s catalog last year. So simple, so fun. Or the try the lighted version that was featured in the now defunct Domino

Pretty Found Objects: One year I’d love to recreated this beautiful work of art done by Jane from All the Luck in the World.

All Strung Up: This is one of my faves featured on Apartment Therapy. This was a major contender for our ‘tree’ this year but I couldn’t bring my self to do this to our old plaster walls. Maybe next year…


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