Thursday, November 29, 2018

Countdown to Countdown to Christmas

With only two days to go, I am bustling around here trying to prepare
for our yearly Countdown to Christmas.
2018 activity, outing, and craft ideas are jotted in the Christmas planner,
and all that's left to do is cut the slips of paper, and place them in the Calendar.
I can hardly believe that this is our tenth Countdown to Christmas.
A whole decade.
Where does the time go?

The last few years we've kicked off our countdown with a  North Pole Breakfast.
Our elf, Holly, returns, and the girls LOVE it!

What are your favorite Christmas traditions?

I'll link a couple of our Countdown favorites, and leave your ideas in the comments!
I'm always looking for new activities!

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Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Organizing for Christmas

We are in Christmas mode 'round here!

Hallmark movies are playing, cookies are baking, house is decorated 
{except for the tree ~ hubs is a firefighter, ya know},
and I am trying to channel my organizational self so that I don't forget a thing.

Each year I devote a little purse-sized notebook to everything Christmas.
It contains the draw names for everyone in our family, gift ideas, Christmas card lists, 
and Countdown to Christmas Activities {we plan an outing, activity, or craft each day of December leading up to Christmas}.

But this year  . . .  I found the CUTEST idea:

I'm not great at following patterns, and I'm a Gemini,
so my attention span is . . . not.
So I used their general idea to decorate the cover,
 and made a planner that would work best for my needs.

I even purchased extra Composition books and scrapbook paper so my girls
could make their own Christmas Notebooks.
{The Scrapbook Paper was on a Black Friday special at JoAnns for 70% off!! Score!}

We've been busily scribbling away all our Christmas ideas, and eagerly counting down!
How do YOU organize?
I need alllll the help I can get!

Also ~ Countdown to Christmas Ideas coming soon!
Four more days, y'all!

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Monday, November 12, 2018

DIY Christmas Gifts

Well, November is just zooming on by, isn't it?
But it's not too late to get moving on some DIY Christmas gifts.

One of my favorites is Homemade Vanilla.

Nearly everyone in my family loves to bake, so this gift is a no brainer ~
it's easy to make, fun to package, and greatly appreciated.
And if you make it soon, it'll be ready for gift-giving by Christmas!

I make my vanilla individually, but you *could* make up a big batch in large mason jars, 
and then divide it up into smaller bottles at the end.

I buy my BOTTLES on Amazon
My BEANS on Beanilla
and my VODKA ~ just the cheap-o kind at the liquor store

I slice through the center of each bean, drop a couple in each bottle, 
fill to the top with the Vodka, tie up with pretty ribbon, and set aside for 5 or 6 weeks.
And voila!

Seriously, y'all, they make the greatest gifts!

Make some today, and check some people off your gift list!

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Thursday, November 1, 2018

I Can Safely Start Prepping For Christmas Now . . .

Y'all, it is November 1st!!!


That means I can *now* start openly talking about Christmas.
I promised Sierra: No Christmas movie-watching, Christmas music, or Christmas prep 
{aside from a bit of shopping here and there so it's not all heaped on at the last minute, *and* crafts for our upcoming Christmas Bazaar},
until after Halloween.

And here we are ~ November 1st!!!

So . . . one of my most favorite Christmas activities is wrapping gifts.
I love the wrap, the ribbons, the bows, the tags.  All of it.

We've been making our own gift tags for years: 


But last year I tried something new.
I printed out a bunch of my favorite, wintry prints in wallet-size,
punched holes at the top, and strung string through, and voila!
Gift Tags.

This year I got fancy and adhered cardstock to the back to finish them off, 
and sturdy them up a bit.

The photos I used to make my tags this year are general, wintry images as I am selling them at our local Christmas Bazaar.
BUT ~ how adorable would it be to print off images of your littles playing in the snow, baking cookies, or enjoying other holiday festivities?

To make your own just print off your favorite images, slap some glue and cardstock on the back, punch a hole, slip some ribbon through, and you can have your own, personalized tags.
Let me know in the comments if you make some!

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