Saturday, December 10, 2011

Christmas Festivities

Let's just say that I LOVE Christmas and I always have. Even when I was a kid I had boxes of Christmas decorations for my room, a Christmas music CD collection, and loved making homemade cards and buying everyone gifts with my money! Now, as an adult, it is just as fun, and I have added decorating a home and holiday cooking to the mix! Not to mention shopping for my kids, new family traditions, and the joy of experiencing Christmas with my little ones in new ways.
Pictured above is a little concoction I found on Pinterest on How to Make Your Home Smell Like Christmas. It is simply wonderful!! In the past, I have just added a bunch of spices to some boiling water and let it cook down for a couple of hours. But this recipe actually has you adding some yumminess that makes the house smell wonderful, and I just so happened to have these things on hand!

Holiday Stove Top Potpourri Mix

One whole orange or just the orange peel
1/2 cup cranberries
1 Tbsp. whole cloves
3 sticks of cinnamon or some pieces of cinnamon sticks
a bit of grated nutmeg if desired

All you do is quarter the orange, or place all the orange peels into a saucepan. Add the other ingredients and fill with water. Put it on the smallest burner on the lowest setting and get ready for your house to smell amazing! You can refill with water if desired. Also, it says you can reuse this throughout the season, or bag up the ingredients and give it as a gift! How cute is that! But I will say that I saved it after I used it once, drained of course, and the next time I used it I did not like the smell! So, maybe just personal preference!
One of my favorite things around this holiday season is decorating! We lived in our last apartment building for about 4 years, so it was fun this year to be in a new house and have a different place to decorate!! Now, notice my counters/house is not spic and span when I took these pictures, but, you get the idea!!
I found this cute little tree with the lights and a burlap bottom for only $2.49 at the thrift store!! Can't beat that!!

This is the first year we have our piano, so it made for a fun surface to decorate!! I actually used a table runner across the top, and it made it look even more festive!!
This year we opted not to go get a real tree and to save a few bucks by accepting the artificial tree from Tad's family. I was bummed we weren't getting a real tree, but once we got it up and decorated, I was happy with the outcome!! And I am convinced that ornaments are so special and it's so fun to talk about the stories behind the ornaments as we hang them on the tree! Tad's family's tradition is to get a new ornament every year, for each child, so Tad has all his ornaments from when he was born!! And they have given our kids their ornaments too! So fun!
The kids eating their breakfast in front of the tree! And of course, watching their morning cartoons!!
Aunt Lydia decided to get her sisters and Maddy a different kind of present this year!! Instead of picking out a toy for them, she got them tickets to go see Cinderella at the local theater on opening night!! They got dressed up and had a blast!! Here they are before they left!! Isn't Maddy getting big??

So now, we still have the traditions of making our gingerbread house, making Christmas cookies, and getting Christmas cards out, amidst other things I'm sure!! But it is a blast! It's fun being in our new little home and continuing to make new memories with our growing little family!! And just in case you need a reminder, my due date is February 27! It's been changed a couple of times, but this date was confirmed at my last appointment. Third trimester!!!!!

Happy Holidays!!

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