Back in a bit…

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I hope everyone had a wonderful, joyous holiday. Ours was the best yet. 

I’m enjoying some much needed down time…

I’ll be back next year (boy does that feel weird to say!) with new posts.

Have fabulous week and a wonderful New Year!

Sarah

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A Rustic & Colorful Christmas Tree

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Over the weekend we cut down our first live tree ever since we’ve been in our house. 7 years we’ve had a fake tree. It was time we got a real tree. In the past I’ve never wanted to deal with the watering, needle falling, potential fire hazard that goes along with real trees that I remember from my childhood.  BUT…I felt it was time to suck it up and deal with it. And so far I’m glad we did. This tree is my favorite to date.

We cut it out of our own yard! We have had an evergreen tree that was ok but it’s going to be in the way of some other trees I want to plant along our driveway this spring.

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So we topped it and brought it in the house. Bird’s nest and all! Isn’t a bird’s nest in your Christmas tree good luck?

I brought up my big rubbermaid box of ornaments but I couldn’t bring myself to put a single one on.  This tree spoke to me and it said” keep it simple”.  So that’s what we did.

I bought a few fat quarters from Walmart in colorful Christmas fabrics and tore them into strips similar to when I made my fabric garland and simply tied them around the light strand.

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Winter cupcake liners decorate a few of the lights.

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Foam snowflakes from the Dollar Tree fill in a few of the holes.

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Gingerbread ornaments made by little man and my sister and cranberry garland round out the decorations on this handmade tree.

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A few yards of burlap serve as the tree skirt.

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I also put up a tall skinny fake tree in our den.  This tree holds all the ornaments that people have given us and a few of the handmade ornaments little man has made at “school”.

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Berry garland, cinnamon ornaments, dried pomegranate slices, and an old quilt for a tree skirt are a few of the other touches on this tree.

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What about you? Are your trees up and ready to go? Do you go with a fake tree or a real tree?

Have a great day!

Sarah

Gift Card Giving

 

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Giving a gift card is easy. Easy for me to give and easy for the person getting the gift card. But they aren’t very personal are they? Here’s a great and easy way to jazz up a gift card. I found my inspiration via Pinterest and originally found here.

 

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This is a great craft to do with kids. It’s quick and easy!

Sarah

DIY {Sweater Wreath}

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Here is a super easy tutorial on how I made the sweater wreath from yesterdays post:

Materials:

  • Old sweater
  • burlap
  • metal coat hanger
  • cutting tool
  • pliers {not pictured}

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My sweater came from a refashion gone wrong but i just loved the chunky sweater and colors.  The burlap I still had on hand from several projects, including my kitchen curtains.

Next, cut your burlap and sweater into strips. It doesn’t matter the length but if you can afford to go longer I would.

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Unwrap your hanger and shape into a circle

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push your fabric through one end of the hanger and weave back and forth until you have the desired fullness alternating between the sweater and burlap.

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It should look a little something like this:

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When you’ve reached the end use the pliers again to wrap the two ends of the coat hanger together, making sure to make a loop on one end to hang your wreath.

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After making mine, I realized I didn’t use as much fabric as I probably should have so I used wooden cloths pins to keep the fullness.  You can see them in my pictures, this doesn’t bother me, I like the look but if this bothers you, be sure to use enough fabric so it doesn’t slide down the wire when it’s hanging.

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Let me know if you make one! I’d love to see it! Send me a picture or post it on my Facebook Wall!

Happy Crafting!

Sarah

A Few Christmas Touches

I like to keep things simple around Christmas.  This time of year can be stressful enough so why add to it? I like to add a few “hints” here and there of the season in addition to the tree.

Over the summer, I bought a vintage case full of vintage Christmas ornaments. I could.not.wait. until I got to use these this year!

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A bowl here, a basket there

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The mantel was also pretty easy this year.  I first started with 2 vintage type trays, added a DIY sweater wreath, garland with pine cones, and the PEACE stocking holders round it out.  I added sliced and dried pomegranates and glitter snowflakes from dollar tree for a little sparkle.

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I added a few of those vintage ornament pieces in some of the spaces in the type drawers also.

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A tutorial of the wreath is coming tomorrow so be sure to check back!

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In the dining room I’ve wrapped the chandelier in 2 swags and added my vintage sled to the top of the china cabinet. A large bowl lined with burlap and toped with a ton of pinecones makes this easy and festive.

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More vintage ornaments adorn the inside of the cabinet for a little color and sparkle.

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The collage wall is finally done! I’ll show it off one day next week:)

The desk in my living room

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See that cute painted snowman? That was painted by yours truly when I was just 7.  My mom gave it to me last year. I’m hoping to add to the collection with hand painted goodness from little man.

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And a little sparkle in the bathroom

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All that’s left is the tree! We’ll be cutting down one out of our own yard this year; it’s the first live tree we’ve had since we’ve been in our house-8 years!

Sarah

My Publisher

 

I just finished designing a custom photo album for a Christmas present tonight. I wanted to pass along a few deals from my go to source is for custom photo albums. Meet My Publisher:image

Tonight was the last night for their BOGO Free deal but they usually run the same promo during January so you still have a chance at the super savings.  They currently are running 30% off with free shipping on their holiday cards along with an additional 25% off your entire purchase $100 and over.

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I made my 2010 family album thru them last year. Their quality can’t be beat. And did I mention it’s easy?  You download their easy to use album maker software, upload your pictures, organize them to your hearts content and order! It’s that easy!

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Be sure to check them out if you are interested.  They also offer a referral program so if any of you are interested, let me know and if I “refer” you, I could save an additional $20 off my next order.  I’ll finish my 2011 Family Album after Christmas; using their software, I’m able to upload my pictures throughout the year and then finalize the layout and design before purchase. I’m current on my pictures up until October so this year will be much easier than last:)

 

**I was in no way compensated for this post from My Publisher.  All opinions are 100% mine. They have no idea who I or this blog am. Although, if they did, I wouldn’t mind working with them in the future! :)**

Let the Decorating Begin!

It’s Christmas time!  Yeah!!  I’ve got all the decorations up except for the tree. We are getting a real tree this year so we’ll get that next weekend.  It will be the start of a new family tradition. 

Today I’ll be sharing the outside decorations and later this week I’ll share the inside with you.

Let’s get started!

I’ve been keeping things simple this year and the outside is no exception. The front door is swaged in pinecone garland with a basket full of greenery that I’ve clipped from around the yard.

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Please excuse the weird shadows. I remembered late in the day that I had to take these pictures because I wouldn’t get another chance until next weekend-darn time change. I’m still not adjusted!

As you all know, I’m a huge fan of “using what you got”. I simple clipped a few sprigs of greenery from evergreen trees, bushes, rhododendron, a Japanese maple, pussy willow tree, and a lavender bush.

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What I like best about the basket is that this arrangement will last well after Christmas and carry me into the winter. No watering is required; I just stuffed my basket with some cheap garland I’ve had for years but don’t use anymore to give it a good base then added my clippings.

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The urns are topped with rustic planters turned upside down for an unique topiary affect.

I had a special model yesterday. Meet Pixel, our Boston Terrier. 

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I also had another special helper who didn’t care for Pixel being my model. Meet Gunner, our Boxer. 

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He can be pretty jealous when he’s not the center of attention.  Oh let’s face it, he’s pretty jealous ALL the time!

Moving to the back door.

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Again, simple swag I made using clippings from the yard.

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Here’s a secret for anyone wanting to make a swag but is too intimidated to try:  get a piece of floral Styrofoam from the Dollar Tree and just go crazy sticking your cuttings in! That’s it!  No wire needed. (well, except to make your hook) You do want to make sure all the foam is covered so you can’t see it through your greenery.  But that’s really it!  It took my 20min tops to make this one.

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The barrel planters are filled with green wreaths topped with pinecones.

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So, have you all been doing any decorating?  Inside, outside? Tree decorating? How many of you are done with your shopping? Procrastinating? Putting it off? Do share!

See you a little later in the week for the inside!

Have a fabulous day!

Sarah