Friday, December 19, 2014

Christmas Card 2014

A couple of weeks ago, we traveled to the family ranch to take pictures to use for our Christmas card.  The trip takes about an hour, and of course, we did our best to get out of the house on time.  So about an hour late.  Haha!  I'm sure some of you can relate.  John and I used to be so prompt, before becoming parents.  It's such a strange world, being late.  Since we were taking the photos on our own, we really didn't have to be out of the house "on time", but it helps when you have a toddler that has a pretty set schedule.

We arrived at the ranch, and quickly changed into our outfits.  It was a warm day, so wearing sweaters all day was out of the question.  We managed to set up the camera, and get outside to take pictures soon after.  Things went well for about two minutes, and then the toddler melt down came, and it was quickly followed by a Momma meltdown.  Sad, I know, but I was so stressed about getting everything done so that we would have a great picture, that I was a bit broken hearted it wasn't going to happen.  Remember, I am still new to this parenting game, and sometimes I fight it instead of going with it.  I feel terrible about it, because I ended up making John mad, and well, let's just say, it was a "fun" time.  Haha!

Fast forward about twenty minutes later, and we have plenty of pictures to choose from, and everyone is done with the process.  We go inside, I review the pics on the camera, and think to myself, "At lest we got something!", and put the camera away.  We change, and head home.  Rordan is asleep in a matter of minutes.  John and I talked and managed to get ourselves out of the funk we were in.  Well, we make it home, I pull out the laptop and review the pictures, and oh my gosh, what I see saddens me.  Almost every shot is blurry!  What?!  So I did my best to edit the photos that were useable, and settled on one to use for a card.  We ended up using a filter to conceal some of the blurriness, and I actually like the outcome.  :)

So I wish this post was about the time our family frolicked in the fields at the ranch and had wonderful pictures to share with you all, but it isn't, and that's okay.  It's life!  It isn't always going to go to plan.  I have to keep telling myself that.  Maybe one day it will stick.  Haha! 

Here are some of the better pictures from the day.....seems we might have had a better time than I remember.  Haha!


Sunday, December 14, 2014

Rordan's Christmas Picture

I am absolutely in love with this little boy of mine!  That's why I have to document the cutest tootest picture of him so far, here on the blog.  Sure it took a little bribing with french fries, his favorite food, but at least he was happy while I took his picture!  I love you Monkey! 
Happy Holidays!

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Wrapping Tip

Okay, so technically you won't be "wrapping" this gift, but you will be placing it inside a bag.  A bag that is just too darn deep to fill with tissue paper that will stick out of the bag.  Well, that's happened to me a couple of times this year and I've found this method has helped me out.  I'd like to share it with you just in case you run into this problem as well.

First add your gift to the bag.  I like to wrap it in tissue paper to keep it hidden.  Second fluff your tissue as you'd like, and add a piece of tape to the bottom.  Third, take that tissue paper and tape it to the inside wall of the bag, leaving the tissue paper sticking out of the bag.  Repeat this step as desired.  Now you have a full looking bag!  I hope this helps some of you!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Christmas HomeTour
Linking up with Jennifer Rizzo's Holiday House Walk.  Thanks for the opportunity Jennifer!

Hello, friends!  Welcome to "Around the Watts House"!  I'm so glad you are able to stop by today for a tour of our home, decorated for Christmas.  Since I started decorating early, I've been itching to share so much of what I've done for a while now.  Honestly, I'm surprised at my restraint!  Some of you have found me via Joy in Our Home's "Holiday Home Tour".  I honestly can't express how excited I was when Kendra asked me to be a part of her tour.  I'm honored to be included amongst so many other talented blogger's sharing their homes this week.
As a new parent, I feel so lucky that I'm able to start Christmas traditions with my little family.  Experiencing my son's amazement with the season has been a blessing.  Nothing beats watching him sit next to the Christmas Tree, talking to the little birds that "live" in the tree, as if they are his best friends.  "Hello, bird!", he says, as he waves.  It's absolutely the most precious thing I've ever witnessed!  I hope you enjoy our tour!
We start on our front porch.  Some of you may have seen our porch lit up with lights a couple of days ago.  This is the area I told you I'd be sharing with you all in that post.  We don't sit out on this porch very often, so it gives me the opportunity to do something a bit extravagant with it each season.   

 I love walking out the door to see the word Joy.  It's such a wonderful reminder to slow down, and enjoy the season.  We used a lot of birds on the tree inside, so when I saw this little birdhouse I knew I had to have it for the porch.  It's just adorable!
Let's head inside.......
The foyer is set up with a fun red and white theme.  I used red paper doilies, and white paper snowflakes to create a fun snow storm of sorts, above the table. 

I made this wreath, along with all of the other wreaths you will see throughout the house today.  Using ornaments to decorate with was simple and fun.  I love the outcome, and hope you do too!
Our stairway is decorated with beautiful flocked garland, and red bows.  Bows, bows, bows, everywhere you look!  It sort of  became a theme, after we finished this area.  It's fun and cheery, and makes going up and down the stairs much more enjoyable.
On to the dining room.  We went with a lodge theme in this room.  The pops of green are refreshing in a land of red. 

 When I stumbled upon these wooden Christmas Trees at TJ Maxx last month, I pretty much wiped out their inventory.  They make the perfect forest centerpiece!
 I used ornaments that  I made myself, as well as some red ornaments left over from last year's tree, and scattered them amongst a garland of flocked pine cones I picked up at Home Goods.

These little fair isle designed pouches are from Michael's.  Aren't they wonderful?  They are perfect for holding napkins, and flatware if you choose to put them inside.  I tied little wooden ornaments I also found at Michael's, to the front of each, as a party gift for guests. 
Let's head into the kitchen.  I kept it simple in here, using a boxwood wreath from Trader Joe's above the microwave, as well as displaying these cute red bells I found at Ross Dress for Less.
I should have shown you the result of my first attempt at putting this together.  It was in shambles, but somehow I managed to get it to stay together, and was able to decorate it.  I can't wait to decorate one next year with Rordan.  He's going to have so much fun doing it!
 Having a hot chocolate station seems to be all the rage now days, so I figured I'd give it a go for our family as well.  Because I really like the look of a two tiered stand, but don't have one, I used two pieces I had sitting around, to make one for this occasion.  All the containers, except for the mug are from Michael's.  I'm pretty sure I spent less than $10 for all of them together.  The mug is from Target's cute Christmas kitchenware section.  It's so much fun to have this in the kitchen.  I wish I could have it out year round!  That might fly with the boys too, because Rordan and John seem to enjoy the fact that marshmallows are out and available all the time.  Ha ha!
Our next stop is the living room.  It's the coziest room with all of the pillows and blankets laying about.  It's even more wonderful at night when the lights from the tree, and garland are the only lights on.

I took a section of garland and placed it into a wooden tray.  I then sprinkled frosted gold pinecones and small ornaments amongst it.


Over to the fireplace.  It was the first thing I decorated for Christmas, this year.  I had planned to decorate with white and metallic only, but as you can see, that changed.  Red, red, red, bows!
When Rordan was born, John ordered each of us a little initial tags from Etsy, to hang from our stockings. It was such a nice thing for him to do!  I absolutely love them! 

Our Christmas Elf, Fezziwig, likes to hang out on the mantel during the day.  I think he likes talking to the deer. 
Now on to the main event; The Christmas Tree!  I promised my husband I wouldn't go crazy and buy a new tree this year.  Not that it's crazy to buy a new tree, but it wasn't in our budget, and I wanted to stick to my promise.  Boy that was a struggle for me, seeing so many beautiful new trees out there, but I did it!  I'm actually glad I didn't get another one though, because I feel like this tree has served my little family for so long, and it deserves one last hoorah, before it becomes a secondary tree. (I already have plans of where to place it next year!)

  I was so excited when I found this wonderful "Merry Christmas" banner at Target.  I  had to cut it so it would fit across the tree, but it's perfect this way, so I'm okay with that decision.  I used my feather ornaments, as well as quite a few salt dough ornaments, and ribbon wrapped ornaments that I made specifically for this tree to decorate with.  I also used unpainted wooden tags, and wooden snowflakes, from Michael's as ornaments.  Most of the other ornaments you see are great finds from my favorite stores, Home Goods, TJ Maxx, Marshall's, and Target.  A lot of the filler (flocked pieces, birds, pine cones, etc.) is from Michael's.  They had a sale for 50% off holiday décor, and I wasn't about to pass up that deal!
Looking back, though it wasn't my plan, I sure do love the outcome.  It's warm and inviting, and what I've wanted for our home for years.  Now we might end up with a new tree next year, but I can never say I'm sorry that I kept this tree this year.  Sometimes, making due with what you have, gives you the best reward.

Here she is at pretty!

I want to thank you again for taking this tour of my home.  I hope you have enjoyed it.  Again, please be sure to visit all of the other great homes on the tour.  I just know you will enjoy them!

Happy Holidays!

Holiday Home Tour hosted by 18 Homes/5 days
A Holiday Home Tour at Come join us as 18 fabulous bloggers open their homes to you this Christmas!   
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A Holiday Home Tour at Come join us as 18 fabulous bloggers open their homes to you this Christmas!  
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