Thursday, December 30

A Very Happy New Year

As we ring in 2011 tomorrow, I will be looking back on 2010 with a smile.  I feel so lucky that it was a year filled with health and happiness for our family. It was also a year of special milestones. My husband and I celebrated 10 years of wedded bliss, our little princess finished Kindergarten, and our twin baby boys turned one. It was also the first year I stayed home in over a decade of working as a marketing professional, and I wouldn't change a thing.  It allowed me to experience all the little things that matter so much.

So, here's to another very happy, healthy and successful year.  Wishing everybody the very best for 2011!

My Personal Decorating Style...In Pictures!

OK, I have to admit, this was a whole lot of fun.

I stayed up way too late this evening playing around with a fun little collage-maker I found online. Love it!

They say a picture tells a thousand words, so what better way to describe my personal decorating style than a collage of my favorite things?

So how would you describe my style based on these pictures?

Some words that first come to mind:

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Tuesday, December 28

Chalkboards: not just for school anymore!

One accessory I am loving these days is chalkboards.

They are slowly disappearing from schools, but showing up in style-savvy homes everywhere!

Source: My Sweet Savannah

They add so much style and personality to any room. I've seen them used in so many different ways; from genuine pieces of art styled up by chalkboard artists, to full chalkboard walls for kids to enjoy.

I went searching for inspiration on how I could incorporate a chalkboard into my own decor, and developed a little idea book, which I've attached below for your enjoyment. Just click on the pic and it will take you to the slide show.

So go get chalking!

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Monday, December 27

Certifiable Pillow FREAK!

Everybody who loves to decorate has some kind of fetish.

For some, it's bed linens, for others its wall art. Some are obsessed with antique glassware or pottery, some live for stripes or polka dots, and still others stalk anything chipped or rusty.

And me? Well, I'm a toss cushion addict. A certifiable pillow FREAK.

Those of you who know me in real life are nodding frantically in agreement, aren't you?  I just know it!

There's nothing more exciting to me than walking through the endless cushion aisle at a store like Pier One or Home Sense. I know, I know, I need to get out more, haha. But there's just something so liberating about knowing that, for under $100, I can change the mood of an entire room simply by changing up the pillows.

With their pops of colour, pattern and texture, there really isn't an easier, cheaper or more commitment-free way to make a style statement in a room than with pillows. And when I tire of the room's decor, or feel inspired by the season at hand, I can simply pull off the cushion covers and dress them up with something fresh.

I can guarantee you that any spare storage space in our home has some kind of a pillow stuffed there. My linen closet (which, by the way, is a large closet by most standards) is filled with about a gazillon pillow inserts and covers - all sizes, shapes, colours and textures, from bolsters to lumbars, from seagrass to silk.  It's actually become a bit of a  joke in our home and circle of friends.  My husband likes to tell everybody about the little pillow 'graveyard' I've amassed in our basement. What can I say?  I simply can't resist!

So when I found some time to spend on Etsy over the holidays, what do you think I searched for?  You guessed it!  P-I-L-L-O-W-S!  I fell in love with a number of new prospects.  Do I need more pillows?  No, of course not.  Do I WANT these pillows?  Absolutely!

Thought I'd share them with you too!  Aren't they simply gorgeous?

In love, I tell ya, LOVE.

From Mason Moonbeam 

From Cookies and Milk 

From Nestahome 

From deedeeetsyshop
From Honey Pie Design

From Next Door to Heaven

From myadobecottage

From I Sew Lucky
From deedeeetsyshop

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Tuesday, December 21

Wintery Jar Laterns - My Version

If you caught my last post, you might recall that one of my favorite ideas I've seen this Christmas has been simple little jar lanterns filled with frosty snow, twigs and other delights.

Well, you guessed it, I just had to make my own!

As my 6 year old says, it was easy peasey lemon squeezy.

In fact, I can't imagine an easier craft.

I had some mason jars on hand from pickles and jam (who doesn't, lol?), but I bought a couple of really large ones at Michael's, all together, they were under $6.  I had some fake snow filler leftover from past projects (this stuff is available at any craft store), and I used a large spoon to fill each jar about one-third full.  Then I threw in some evergreen twigs and moss and sprinkled a little more snow over the top.

The votive holders that I used would not fit through the top of the jar, my original plan.  However, they sat nicely in the opening, giving a kinda floating effect, so I went with it. (My general rule: Even if it doesn't work out the way you plan: own it!).  Finally, for the bling, I tied some grosgrain ribbon and twine around the top, and added these adorable junky little word keys that I found at Michael's. These were a little pricier than I would have liked ($16), but I couldn't resist. If you have any old keys on hand, they would do. (By the way, the entire collection by Jim Holtz Idea-ology is AMAZING).

So here they are!  What do you think?

As if I need more mess in my life!

Click here!

I'ved linked this up to these great sites:


My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia


Funky Junk's Saturday Nite Special

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Monday, December 20

Love at First Sight - My Christmas Tour of Blogland

Over the past few weeks, I've visited many of the Christmas open houses here in Blogland, and all I can say is wow.  I've seen so many creative and stunning ideas that it actually makes my brain hurt. Seriously, people, I'm on sensory overload here.

It always amazes me how another decorator can create something so totally different than I ever would, yet once I see it, it's love at first sight.  I guess that's what inspiration is all about.

Thinking back on what I've seen here over the past few weeks, there's a few ideas that really struck all the right notes with me.  They are all connected by a unique cottage style and a cheerful whimsy.
Here's a sampling of some of the ones that were love at first sight.

Luminaries in Jars:
so simple and romantic.

A Cottage in the Woods
Source: A Cottage in the Woods via tinywhitedaisies
Photo Credits to Thrifty Decor Chick

Cheerful and Bright Christmas Decor:
just makes you want to smile.
Photo credits to The Pleated Poppy

Photo credits to The Pleated Poppy

Photo Credits to Craftberry Bush
 P.S. Made from pop bottles, I kid you not!

Like a chair with angel's wings.
Photo Credits to The Shabby Nest

Or Frosted Luminaries 
in dreamy colours...

Crafts by Amanda
Photo Credits to Crafts by Amanda

French Cottage Style:
frosty little potted trees.

Photo Credits to Fern Creek Cottage

Just look at those sweet tags!

Anything with Burlap 
and Upcycled 'Junk'

Funky Junk Interiors' Who-ville Tree
Photo Credits to Funky Junk

Burlap and Clock Tree

For images, click here.

Burlap Stockings...
 Cozy Cottage Cute

Photo Credits to Cozy. Cottage. Cute.

Buckets of Burlap

Photo Credits to Buckets of Burlap

Chalkboards with 
Whimsical Holiday Messages

Source: My Sweet Savannah via SuzieBeezie

Or even entire walls, lol...

Sixty-Fifth Avenue
Photo Credits to Sixty-Fifth Avenue

'Pottery Barn' Style 
Paper Garland Trees

Guest Project at Tatertots & Jello
Source: via Tatertots & Jello

Photo Credits to The Soladay Family Blog

And so many more, but I'm out of time!

Thanks so much to everybody for your inspiration!

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Saturday, December 18

Open House: My Christmas Tour

OK, so I think I am FINALLY finished decorating for Christmas.

I can't promise that I won't get the crafting or decorating itch again before Friday, but anything I do from here on in will be fun stuff with my 6 year old daughter, and her cousins - my 8 year old niece and 7 year old nephew.

I actually resisted buying any new decorations while shopping with my mom and sister today at a local decor shop called Living Rooms.  For me, that's progress!

I know I've posted most of these bits and pieces of my holiday decor in earlier posts, but I thought I'd bring it all together in my big ol' house tour in order to join in on all the 'Holiday House Tour' Link Up Parties' going on right now here in blog land.

So come on in and follow me! (PS. No need to take off your shoes.  Our floors never stay clean for long. We have two 75-lb dogs, two 1 year old boys, and a 6 year old.  You get the picture!)

Our Front Porch...

 Our Foyer...

Our Family Room...

 Our Open Concept Kitchen / Dining / Living Area...

Our Back Veranda...

Our Master Bedroom...

 The Princess Sleeps Here :-)...

That's it!  Hope you've enjoyed the tour

Happy holidays to you and yours! 

I've linked this up with these great sites:

Hooked on Houses Holiday Tour Party

Funky Junk's Saturday Night Special: Full Home Reveals.

Funky Junk's Saturday Nite Special