Holiday Pictures

Do you have a friend that you know will be up for taking pictures all the time? I have one-Lauren. A few weeks ago I thought back to 2011 when I did a holiday photo shoot with them. Lauren and her husband, Cameron got gussied up and we went down to Branson. That sounds really lame, but Branson is amazing around Christmas time. Everything in that town is lit up with Christmas lights, and decorated with all things Christmas. It is pretty perfect, as long as you are patient enough to wait for a bunch of tourists to go by to get your shot. Here are a couple shots from that shoot:



This year I had another idea–lets go down to Branson and take pictures of each other. That way we both have fun pictures for our Christmas cards. We made it into a double date- take pictures, eat delicious sushi, and then walk around down on The Landing (a shopping strip in downtown Branson).

It was such a fun day! Our husbands are ridiculous when they get together- mostly getting in trouble with me and Lauren for the ridiculous things they decide to do…It seriously is such a blessing to have them as friends. It is hard to find a couple where everyone gets along. Let me tell you, we all get along great! Yay friends!

Look at these cuties::





This is where the fun started::










Needless to say, we had a great time. And we got some great shots for our Christmas cards! People around us were actually taking pictures of us taking pictures of each other! One lady told Cameron he was “Saxy,” not sexy, saxy. Does that mean he looks like a saxophone? We may never know.



Jonesing for a Redo

Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about our entryway. I mean, every time I walk past the door I groan. It’s a dark pit of despair. The lighting is horrible, and I know it could be much better. I actually daydream about it sometimes…these pictures definitely don’t do it justice, but even when its daylight there’s not much natural light that gets to this area.



The first thing I would like to do to improve it is to change out the light fixture–its old, gold, and another word that rhymes with old/gold, really kind of gross. I would love to replace it with something like this::



From West Elm. Find it here

I love the simplicity of it and that it doesn’t have anything to really block the light in anyway. No drum, or weird metal cage around it. It’s on sale right now for $79 and I am begging Dave to let me pull the trigger on it. We will see…I will probably end up bribing him with some gooey butter cookies. He can’t say no when those come out of the oven.

The next thing I really want to do, and this is a serious game changer–is a new entry door. One with a big window, to let in some natural light. This door right here::


From Coastal Living. Find it here

I love the window in this door. And the numbers at the bottom. Oh baby, this door is calling my name. The hardware, the color, just everything. One day I tell you. One day. My lovely bestie, Lauren, has been dropping hints to Dave every time she comes over. “Hmmm…this entryway would be much happier with an entry door with a window…” Sneaky. If we don’t get a new door soon, I will probably end up painting the door a bright color. It is a sickness-I have the urge to paint everything in sight, mostly in turquoise or red.

I am also on the hunt for a rug. There was one on clearance at Target a few weeks back, I had it in my cart but I had second thoughts and put it back. I couldn’t stop thinking about it, so two days later I went back. Of course, someone else snatched it up. I’m still cursing myself for not grabbing it the first time. Oh well. In the meantime I’ve been keeping my eye out for a good rug deal. Mostly, I’ve been scouring Joss & Main, waiting for the perfect one. If you’ve never visited Joss & Main’s website you need to. Now. Here just click on this link. You have to sign up to view the deals, but it is free and there is so much stuff!

If Hubs lets me get that pendant light, I will probably jump up and down screaming. Ok, maybe not screaming, but I will definitely be excited. Check back and see if I get it!


Holiday Handcrafting

This year I’ve decided to go the DIY or handmade route for Christmas gifts. I’m really excited about it.

I started on the gifts for my nieces- MacKenzie and Morgan this week. I am making them puppets to play with. I found the templates online here at liagriffith. Lia Griffith is about all things handcrafted. She has ideas for everything! I could spend hours and hours on her website! And these Woodland Friends Puppets are super cute. I finished the owl the other day:



I’m really excited to get started on the Rabbit and Bear to go along with the Owl. After I finish those I will start on another project for the girls– Felt Toy Horses. I also found that at lia griffith-you can find it here.

I think handcrafting all these gifts automatically attaches memories to the gifts. The girls will have these gifts for years to come, and they can tell their friends that their Aunt made them. I love stuff like that. One added bonus to DIYing a lot of gifts is that most of them are pretty inexpensive. The materials for the puppets cost under $5! And the Toy Horse material was under $10. Gotta love that! I’m all about saving money all while still giving something worthwhile.

My favorite part about the Holidays is the time spent with family and friends. It is a crazy busy time, but it is always filled with love and laughter. My family always goes camping for Thanksgiving (I know we’re crazy!) and I am super excited for the four days we will spend together- 4 wheeling, playing board games, talking, just sitting around the fire. Its the best! The Hubs birthday is also right before Thanksgiving and I have a special trip planned to St. Louis for it. Dave never spends money on himself, or really does anything for himself, so planning a secret weekend for him is really fun!

I’m looking forward to sharing updates of some of the gifts I’m cooking up- some I won’t share on here because I don’t want to ruin the surprise for some people! Until next time!