Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Christmas 2013

Our Christmas was a little crazy this year, but great at the same time.

Kevin and I both had to work on Monday and then we headed to the Muskegon area where both of our families live.  Our drive was pretty bad on Monday...my parents ended up getting around 18 inches of snow that night!

On Christmas Eve we went to my parents and got our "jingle jammies."  It's a Christmas Eve tradition at my house.  We went to dinner at Joe Chan's Bistro with some of Kevin's family and then opened gifts at Kevin's mom's.

Christmas tree at Kevin's mom's
We headed to my parents at 8 a.m. on Christmas morning to open gifts with them and my sister.  Next up was Kevin's dad's at 10 a.m. for breakfast and gifts.  My family party was at Noon at my grandma's.  We were there for a few hours before it was time for us to head to a family party for Kevin's dad's side.

My parents' Christmas tree (with all of the opened gifts under it).
Christmas tree and presents at my grandma's.

I did some shopping the day after Christmas while Kevin was at work.  Friday Kevin had to work part of the day, and then unfortunately we had a funeral to go to that afternoon.

Saturday was another Christmas party with Kevin's mom's side of the family before we headed home on Sunday.

It was a crazy Christmas time, but I was glad we were able to spend time with both of our families.  Admiral even got to spend some time with his cousin, Lambert!

I hope you had a great Christmas and enjoy your New Year's Eve!  We purposely didn't make any plans and can't wait to be at home this year.  After being gone for pretty much the entire week, I'm happy to stay home, and I'm not mad about it.

Do you have fun plans for NYE?

Monday, December 30, 2013

Mini Wedding Gallery Wall

First, I hope you had a great Christmas!  I enjoyed lots of time with family during my days off.  A full Christmas recap is coming soon, but I wanted to share this mini gallery wall I did last night.

After I did a gallery wall in our living room, I've always wanted to do another one.  I still had some frames I wanted to hang, and lots of wedding pictures I want up in our house, so I decided I'd do another little wedding gallery wall on our stair way to the second floor.

I'm sure I'll switch out some of the pictures eventually, but for now, I'm still loving all of our wedding pictures and will keep them up for a while.  I'd also like to add more frames in the future, but need to get the right sizes.

I had this frame already, and added our wedding program and a couple pictures to it.
This frame was a gift from my parents.  I haven't had a chance to add pictures to the mat yet, but I wanted to hang it anyway.
Easy Canvas Prints sent me a free 8x10 canvas print of one of my favorite group wedding pictures.  I already have a frame in our living room with pictures of just Kevin and I, so I wanted to display one of our group pictures on this gallery wall.

I love the way the canvas turned out!  Easy Canvas Prints was great to work with, shipping was fast, and the canvas looks amazing in our gallery wall!

AND it's your lucky day because Easy Canvas Prints is offering you all 50% off a canvas print of your own!  Just click HERE to get the deal.

I swear I could do a gallery wall in every room in my house, I just love them so much!  What do you think about gallery walls?

*Easy Canvas Prints sent me a free canvas print, but all opinions are my own.*

Wedding Wednesday

Also linking up with Belle In Boots for Wedding Wednesday.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Weekend in Photos

**Before I start this post, I have to ask for some prayers for a friend.  We got a call Saturday morning from one of our friends (he was an usher in our wedding), telling us that his brother had been shot and killed.  It breaks my heart.  Some people showed up uninvited to a party and were asked to leave.  They left, but came back and fired shots.  Four people were shot, one was killed.  This family should not have to be going through this right now.  If you could maybe send some thoughts and prayers their way, it would be greatly appreciated.**

We spent the weekend out of town at our parents since our siblings were here from out of state.  Here's the recap in photos:

I had a snow/ice day on Friday, so work was closed and I spent the day wrapping presents and baking.  I had a great little helper when I was wrapping presents. Sometimes he supervised and sometimes he helped.

helping wrap
finally have presents under the tree
Kevin surprised me on Friday with beautiful diamond and amethyst earrings.  I love them!!!

 We headed to Kevin's mom's on Friday night.  This is the tree at her house.

 On Sunday we went to my parents and Admiral got to hang out with my sister's dog, Lambert.  

 We came home Sunday night because we both have to work today.  I used this recipe to make some peppermint chocolate cookies.  Super easy and they taste great too!

I hope you had a great weekend.  In case I don't pop in before Christmas, I hope you have a great Christmas and get to enjoy time with your family and friends!

Friday, December 20, 2013

Five on Friday

Happy Friday everyone! I'm linking up with ChristinaDarciApril, and Natasha for 5 on Friday and you should too!

ONE.  No work for me today!  My work closed due to icy road conditions, so I'll be spending the day wrapping presents, baking Christmas cookies, and doing laundry.  Sounds like a great day to me :)

TWO.  I love how cozy our living room feels with all the Christmas decorations.  I love just having the lights from our tree and some candles be the only light in the room.  And I love the smell of the pine scented candles I have out right now.

THREE.  We've had quite a bit of snow fall here in Michigan lately, and Admiral LOVES playing in it.  He loves to burry his face in the snow and sniff around.  I think he looks adorable with his furry, snow covered face.

FOUR.  In our fall photos post I mentioned that one of the photos made it in to our Christmas card.  I didn't have enough time to order photo cards (next year), so I just printed copies and put one in each card.  Here is the photo that we chose to include:

Of course we had to choose one with our four-legged child :)

FIVE.  We are headed to our parents' houses this weekend to see our siblings that are coming from out of state, so we are really looking forward to that.  Hope you enjoy the last weekend before Christmas!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013


Lately I've found myself being very negative, and usually about unimportant things.  I'm over-reacting to things that really shouldn't be a big deal.  For example, I put our Christmas cards out in the mailbox on Tuesday last week, and when I got home from work that night, the cards were still in the mailbox, but our mail person had put mail in.  I was SO mad that she did not take our Christmas cards and I totally freaked out about it.  When in reality, it wasn't a big deal at all.  I just dropped them off the next day on my way to work, problem solved.  

it's all in the attitude
I'm not sure where this negative thinking/behavior is coming from, but I'm thinking the stress of the holidays could have something to do with it.  Even though I have my shopping done and house decorated, I still feel like I have tons to do.  Grocery shop for a potluck at work this week and for ingredients for baking Christmas cookies; bake the Christmas cookies before this Saturday morning; and finish wrapping presents.

We won't be home this weekend to get any of that done, so it's adding some extra pressure to finish things up this week after work every night.

The point I'm trying to make is that the holidays should be a happy time.  A time to celebrate the birth of our Savior, a time to be with family and friends, and time to be thankful for this wonderful life we live.

I'm going to make a real effort to stop stressing and worrying about the little things.  I don't like feeling so negative all the time, and I'm the only one who can change that.  So here's to happier days ahead!


Monday, December 16, 2013

Our Christmas Decorations

I'm really happy with how our Christmas decorations turned out this year and I'm super excited to show you!  This is only our second Christmas in our house, so we are still making it our own.  We have no decorations outside (just a couple wreaths on the doors), but I hope to change that next year. 

I'll start with the tree:

The bow was made by my mom's friend...I love how it looks on our tree! 
It looks so pretty at night!  Also, I put 1,300 lights on it...too much?  No....

Entry table in our living room next to the front door.
Printable found here.
Candles and bamboo stand from PartyLite.
Lantern from Ikea
Gallery wall in our living room...got a little Christmas update.
Printable found here.

Christmas countdown blocks from Decor Steals.

Christmas card holder....there are more cards in it now :)
Mini Christmas tree and candy on our kitchen/dining table.

I love having pretty towels in the kitchen.
And of course the wine bottle got a little Christmas make over :)

Hope you enjoyed looking at our Christmas decorations for 2013!  If you posted photos of your Christmas decorations, leave me the link in the comments, I love looking at them!!