Archive for the ‘Living’ Category

Christmas Wishes and Giving

After a restful weekend at home, I’ll be spending the week busy preparing for a very long upcoming weekend of Christmas celebration. I’m thoroughly looking forward to it! One of my favorite parts of this season is spending time with our large extended family. Since most of my aunts, uncles, and cousins live all over the place, it isn’t often we get to see each other. It makes these gatherings even more special and precious to me.

I wish everyone a beautiful, joyous Christmas filled with peace and love!
Christmas 2012-1

Also, as many of you know, I’m originally from a very small town which I love and will always call home. Growing up in a small town, I feel we are all intertwined in one way or another. Matt Pohler, also from my hometown, is only 17 and he was recently diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. He is currently going through chemotherapy and fighting the fight of his life. The medical bills are staggering. If you can offer any help, it would be greatly appreciated! His story can be found here: MattPohler.org Family and friends are trying to help by putting together a raffle and you can also donate as well. If you’d like to support this beautiful family, go to MattPohler.org


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We had a lovely Thanksgiving! But as soon as it passed, we began our Christmas celebration. From visiting Santa to decorating the house, it definitely feels like a cheerful time of year!

St. Nick (to read more about him, go here) stopped by last night. He brought a few goodies for Livy and Avery and he wrote a special letter to Avery about her inability to listen so we’ll see if her listening skills improve. Santa has brought the girls so much over the past years that I’m not sure what he could possibly come up with this year to bring them. His little elves are really having to think hard this year. On that same note, I think Avery is old enough to understand the joy of giving and how meaningful it is so perhaps we will start introducing a “giving day” where she can pick some things to gift for donations to other children.

I decided to go more towards natural elements for decorating this year. I ordered Burlap stockings that were handmade on Etsy and a beautiful burlap treeskirt with cute buttoms on Etsy as well. I also love a lot of greenery!
Starting to feel like Christmas around here

Last week I went to Anthropologie to do a little shopping and I noticed they had these cute faux snowglobes made out of Mason jars and other jars. They were $28 per jar and while I love a splurge from Anthropologie, I couldn’t justify the expense because I wanted a lot of them. I had a lot of the stuff needed to make these already at home and ran to Michaels to get the snow glitter and more jars. I made a grouping for the kitchen with only Christmas trees and I made a grouping for our family room. I think they turned out really cute! And considering I made 10 of them, that’s $280 worth of faux snowglobes for only about $30-40 worth of supplies. The most expensive part was the Lennox trees but I used a 40% off coupon from Michael’s.
Supplies (jars, cooltouch glue gun (don’t want to burn yourself!!), trinkets or village christmas trees, snow glitter, OH! and apple cider for sipping while you work) :
One of my groupings:
Got a little crafty late last night making snowglobes

She moves too quickly! The lighting was low and I couldn’t get a good shot of her admiring the tree so it’s a bit blurry (and I was too lazy to go get my other lens):

Last weekend, we had a very nice weekend at home and I promised Avery that she could decorate a Gingerbread house over the weekend. She couldn’t wait! She’s been wanting to do this for weeks. We picked up a house from Whole Foods. Unfortunately, they didn’t have a kit to go with it so I went to their bakery and they packaged some frosting for me and we picked out some fun treats to decorate it with a la carte.
I love how hard she is concentrating here. This one was taken with my iphone:
Concentrating very hard!
The finished product turned out pretty cute! I straightened out the roof shingles just a tad:

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Last weekend, we took our annual family trip to Fredericksburg, Texas, one of the cutest little historic towns in Texas full of really cute boutiques, wineries, and beautiful historic homes. To me, it is heaven!

I’m addicted to instagram and use my phone too much for photos:
Fredericksburg Fun!
Shoppers @fredericksburgtx
I knew this wouldn’t last very long with her super fine hair:
Getting ready to go shopping in Fredericksburg! Let's see how long this hair-do lasts.
Silly girls:

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Trick or Treat

We’ve been busy having lots of fun around here so I’m a bit behind. I’ll make this post just about Halloween and follow up with everything else we’ve been up to.

Halloween is always close to my birthday so this year, the celebration actually fell on my birthday since it happened to be the Saturday before…October 27th. My entire family came to town to celebrate with me. I scheduled the entire day starting with a private craft party at Paper Source (FUN!), lunch and a little shopping, Trick or Treating with the kiddos at the Hill Country Galleria, and a night out with our special men at Uchiko and downtown with the crazies for Halloween. Our dinner lasted almost 4 hours. Woooo!

For the actual day of Halloween, the girls had a parade at their school and then later on that evening, our neighborhood has Halloween dinner and hayride that we joined in on. The girls had a blast!!

Birthday Festivities started out at Paper Source:

paper source 2012 b
paper source 2012

Followed by Trick or Treating at the Galleria:
Caleb and Avery:
Nana with Lyla and Livy:
Looks like tons of fun to me:
And then dinner at Uchiko while my parents babysat all the girls:
Such handsome boys

The girls getting ready for the hay ride and some trick or treating on Halloween:

Random pics:
Teacher gifts:
Teacher gifts for Halloween!
Headed to school in matching outfits:
Headed to school in matching outfits

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This is my favorite time of the year over all other seasons. Perhaps it is because of the weather or that I really love how it appeals to the senses (especially the smell of Fall, the changing colors of leaves, the warmth of the indoors, etc.) Now that we are finally home, I’m embracing the chance to make our home hug us with “Fall” when we walk in.

I’ve made a few subtle changes from our last kitchen but it is otherwise very much the same. Besides the change in island color, we did a few other minor things. The one thing we did add are some cool cabinet features that I found on Pinterest like the cutting board that drops straight to the trash can and built-in utensil/drawer organizers.

Love fall!

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It’s been an exhausting past two to three months but we have made it!  It’s taken a lot of blood, sweat, and tears to get here (literally).   Keeping it real…    Dreams don’t always come easy but it is so worth the sacrifices and hard work in the end.   Our journey has been filled with chaos and adventures these last few months and the girls have just rolled with all of it as if the chaos never even existed.  We moved in to a temporary “vacation” home for three weeks from our other temporary home while our permanent home was being finished and last Monday we finally got to move to our FOREVER home.  It’s similar to our last home in a lot of ways though I did make lots of tweaks.   We are really loving being here!  There is nothing like being home with your family.   As for layout and decor, some rooms are 100% different and some are 100% the same and some are just a little different.

Over the next few weeks and months, I’ll share more pictures as the rooms start to come together.  I have unpacked the entire house with the exception of all the wall and shelf decor.   My creative mind doesn’t work until things are organized.   So basically, unpack, organize, and then decorate.   I have the first two done but decorating is in progress.  Also,  painters are still here working on making everything perfect.   I’m looking forward to having the home to ourselves hopefully by this weekend.   We also finally got our stair treads finished on Monday because we did a special tread to match our reclaimed floors.  That was a mess.  Thank goodness it’s done.

On another note, this past Monday was my Dad’s birthday, two weeks ago was Matt’s birthday, Dawn and Matt have anniversary this weekend, and Scott has birthday this Saturday.

Our formal living and dining areas (not decorated obviously as you can see all the boxes of decor over in the back corner):
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I chose a different floor this time. I loved our walnut but it was just too soft so we decided to go with a reclaimed, distressed floor. The floor has lots of texture and an oil, matte finish that is supposed to be much better than stain and poly for long-term wear:
Wanted to show my pumkins I picked up yesterday at Whole Foods. I will show a better view of the house when we get our awnings installed and our large globe boxwoods that will hopefully come in soon that we had to special order:
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This year we kept it pretty low key for the Fourth and went to stay with Dawn and Matt. We took the girls to the Round Top Parade which is in the most idyllic small town with cute historic homes and a population of less than 100 people. It’s the home of the famous antique fairs twice a year. We then went down to the Brazos River where they had a concert and some fun activities. Avery loved it because they had free Blue Bell ice cream. The following weekend, we headed to my Mom and Dad’s and went to the parade in Shiner that following weekend and spent time together as a family.

Watching the parade at Round Top:
Getting ready to run and get candy:
Livy giving Aunty Dawn kisses:
Trying to stay cool with “agua”..it’s the only spanish word she knows and that’s all she calls it:
Waving to all the floats that pass by (Livy and Lyla were great wavers):
Livy loved all pretty floats and the horsies:
Livy LOVES her sister:
Blue Bell Ice Cream Sandwich on a very hot day:
Love that expression:
We were having so much fun:
Livy loves Aunty and Lylie:

So funny, they were all dancing but this one is something else:

Shiner Parade:
Livy and Jeff:
There’s GG (my grandma, the girls great grandma)! She got to be in the parade, too 🙂

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