November 30, 2011

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

We've been busy little elves trying to get our house ready for Christmas, and it's coming along! I wanted to get the majority of the decorating done before this Sunday, because I'm hosting a White Elephant party at our house, and a lot of Chad's family hasn't been to our house yet. There are still a few things I want to add, but I'm happy with it. Last year, we had just moved into our house 10 days before Christmas, so we had almost no time or money to decorate. Look at our little tree, it was my parents first Christmas tree they bought when they first got married, so it was in pretty sad shape. We put it on the curb after New Years for the trash men to get, but someone actually ended up picking it up and taking it! The year before that, we had a real tree but we didn't want to risk ruining the carpet, so we picked up an artificial tree (not pre-lit) from Garden Ridge this year. We got a great deal on it, considering it's 9 feet tall. In the past, we've decorated our tree with red, but this year I wanted to do silvers and creams. I saw a Christmas display last year at the Nutcracker Market that really inspired me, and I even picked up a few ornaments last year to try to transition it over to that last year. This year our tree is much more how I envisioned it. I also got a lot of my inspiration from Pinterest, of course :) Ok, onto the pictures.....
The Living Room:

Our new tree! We thought it was a little too big at first, but we have such tall ceilings,we think it's the perfect size now.
I got the silver ball ornaments at big lots for $3 for a pack of 18! I bought 4 boxes.

Entering the living room from the entry hall.

I really love the mantle decorations. It took a while to get them right though. The lighted garland was from Walgreens like 2 years ago, and the stocking are from Target and I had them monogrammed from a local baby boutique. I have one for Claire too, but I'll wait to monogram her's until next year. The stocking hangers are from Hobby Lobby and the cream poinsettas are too (all the candles/candlesticks, seafoam jar and fireplace screen are too). I just pulled the flowers off of a stem I bought and placed them in the garland.

The tree skirt I picked up at Target last year too, and had it monogrammed with our last name.

I love ornaments with special meaning. I picked up this pink "C" and blue "G" at HL. Claire's 1st ornament! :)

Ornaments from the Nutcracker Market

These are my baby shoes. I saw this idea on the blog "Our Happily Ever Afters" and I just happened to have my baby shoes, for Claire's nursery, so I thought it would be cute to put them on our tree.

World Market is also a place I've found cute ornaments.

The Dining Room:
I used a neutral runner from HomeGoodes, and assorted glass candlesticks (3 from Hobby Lobby and 2 were a gift from my Aunt.) The candles are from HL and so are the pinecones and cream poinsettas( the same as on the mantle). I set out our fine china to make it look nice and so it can be seen, since it doesn't get much use :( The silver PEACE I got from World Market. Originally, it was a hanging decoration, but I could never find a good spot for it, so I just cut off the hanging part.

Close up of our fine china (Lenox Venetian Lace). I love it!!!

The other side of the dining room. We haven't really done anything to this room yet, except buy the dining table set, but that's on our home improvement list for next year. We're going to put in wood floors, chair railing, paint, and hang a larger chandelier.
The Kitchen:

We got the chandelier from Overstock a few months ago. It's almost the exact same as this Pottery Barn chandlier, but a fraction of the price! I just put a bunch of pine cones in a wire bowl to make a simple and cheap centerpiece. Both from Hobby Lobby..notice a theme?? haha The bowl was like $8 and the pinecones were like 5, both 50% off.

I put some extra ornaments in these glass apothecary jars I already had.

I used a wreath I already had to go above the window above the sink. It's a little small for the space, but I don't know what I want to put up there yet.

I framed ou Christmas card from last year.

My cute snowman cookie jar I got from a whitle elephant party a couple of years ago.

No southern kitchen is complete without the Southern Living Cookbook :) The picture calendar on the fridge I made on Tiny Prints. Love it!

Kitchen towel monogrammed with "P" I got at the Nutcracker Market last year. I keep it up all year, though.

I added an extra string of lights we had in the wire jar on top of the fridge.

We bought this sideboard table at a local antique store for a really good price several months ago. The basket underneath is from World Market and holds some of Graham's toys.

This side table is actually Chad's great-grandparents. We may buy something else eventually but it's really pretty. The lamp is from HomeGoodes, and the ornament jar will be holding candycanes.

These pillows were recovered by my taleneted Mom several months ago. I picked up the fabric at JoAnn's and a local fabric store. They are all double sided.

Here's the other side of the striped pillow on the far left, and the other side of the cream pillow.

The cream throw is from Target and it's the softest blanket ever!!

In the background, you can see the art niche, we painted it and added framed family pictures.
The entry hall needs something to spruce it up. I'm thinking of adding a little Christmas tree??
(Excuse the bed, our comforter is being dry cleaned.) We recently added curtains to our master bedroom, they are from Target. They're a shade darker than the walls, and they block a lot of light, which will be nice once Claire arrives.

Ok, I think I'm caught up on our house for now! I'm so glad the holidays are here, and I can't wait until there are a ton of presents under our tree.... I need to start shopping asap!!!

November 28, 2011

Weekly Dinner Menu

MONDAY: Easy Salsa Chicken, Salad, and Rice

TUESDAY: Meatloaf, Au Gratin Potatoes (boxed) and Green beans (canned)

WEDNESDAY: Grilled Tilapia, Asparagus and New Potatoes

THURSDAY: Poppyseed Chicken with Salad

FRIDAY: Pizza or leftovers

SATURDAY: Lunch: Nachos; Dinner: Go out to eat :)

SUNDAY: I'm having the ladies of the Pokorny side of the family over for our annual White Elephant gift exchange, so I'll be getting ready for that!!! :)

November 27, 2011

Not a Fun Weekend

Early Friday morning Chad came down with a stomach bug. I called my parents and they came and picked up Graham as soon as they got home from Tyler so he wouldn't catch it. They kept him overnight and I spent the day taking care of my sick hubby and trying to disinfect the house. Before my parents picked up Graham, I ran with him to the grocery to pick up all the necessities in case we all caught it and then couldn't go to the store. It's the first time since we've been married that  any of us caught something like this, so I guess it was bound to happen.

I got bottled water, a bunch of gatorade, 2 different types of pedialyte, milk (just because we were out) lysol disinfecting spray, clorox wipes, baby tylenol, pepto, immodium, new toothbrushes, soup, hand santizers, diapers and jello. I may have gone a little overboard, but I wanted to be as prepared as possible! My parents came and got Graham after he ate lunch, and kept him until the next afternoon. Chad layed on the couch the whole day, but 24 hours later he was feeling back to normal again.

I disinfected and cleaned the whole house top to bottom and I'm almost done washing everything in the house I can/anything Chad touched or slept on.  By the time my parents brought Graham back, Chad was feeling perfectly fine, so we went and got a Chrismtas tree and decorated it last night. Chad is not feeling so hot again, I think he may have overdone it yesterday, so he is taking it easy again today. So far Graham and I are feeling great, so I'm praying we dodged the bullet and my disinfecting craziness will pay off. Today we're just laying low. I'm finishing up the laundry and going to try to orgainze some of Claire's nursery. It's a huge mess. I'll update soon with Christmas deocrations and nursery progress. Her bedding still hasn't come in, so hopefully it will be showing up tomorrow, I think the Thanksgiving week slowed down the delivery. Here's a sneak peek of our tree, a little big but we love it!

Turkey Day!!

Well, we made it to Tyler and checked into our hotel. The last several years we've just shared a hotel with my parents to save money, so they were already there when we arrived. We visited and unpacked and then loaded up and headed to Ann and Kenneth's (Ann is my mom's first cousin) for dinner. We ate pulled pork sandwiches and appetizers and some of my dad's famous chocolate sheet cake. We didn't visit too long, because we needed to get Graham in bed, so the 3 of us headed back to the hotel for the night. Graham has a hard time sleeping in the same room with us, but my saavy hubby rigged a bunch of chairs & blankets together so that he couldn't see us from his pack n' play and it worked out great. Graham even slept through my parents coming in later and an alarm that went off about 4 am that was blaring mexican music! The next morning, Graham had a blast running around watching the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade (a Hastings family tradition) and playing with Papa (my dad) and Chad, while I put together a banana pudding, and then we went to breakfast. We tried to put Graham down for his morning nap, but he wasn't having it. He slept maybe 20 minutes, and I knew he wouldn't be taking an afternoon nap with all the craziness at Ann and Kenneth's later.

We headed to Ann and Kenneth's for Thanksgiving dinner around 1. We decided that we weren't going to stay a 2nd night before we left, because Graham would be overtired and would most likely keep us all up that night. We had so much fun visiting with everyone and eating and chasing Charlotte and Graham around. They wanted to be outside the whole time, so that didn't give us much time to sit and visit as much as we'd like.

Getting all washed up for Thanksgiving!

Daddy thought it would be pretty funny to put my towel around my waste

The kiddos playing outside in the beautiful chilly weather

Looking at old family pictures

 My cousin Jessica and her boyfriend

Aunt Patti, Erin and Debra

Mer and I with our cousin, Erin from Baton Rouge

My sister, mom and I

Graham loves his Papa!

We tried to put G down for an afternoon nap with no success, so we headed out about at about 4. We had a nice drive home with no traffic which was awesome. We made it home in time to feed Graham dinner and put him to bed! All in all, a great Thanksgiving! I can't believe next year we will have a 2 1/2 year old and 8 month old in tow! :)

Hitting the road!

Thought this picture was funny...good thing we have dual air control! ;)