Saturday, December 30, 2017

Holiday Decorating 2017

I love the holidays but what I love more is when the holidays are over. I put away the decorations and get back to eating normal meals and not spending so much money. Don't get me wrong, I love spending time with friends and family and enjoying all the wonderfulness the holidays bring, but I really look forward to a fresh start. A new year to make my to do list and tackle each day of the new year. I have a lot of plans for this new year and as the holidays end I'm already planning for Halloween and lots and lots of recipes in between. But before I move on to New Year or Halloween, here's a quick look at my Thanksgiving and Christmas decorations this year. Happy New Year!

Thanksgiving Decorating

I went with neutrals again, but this time with white and green pumpkins with rustic and floral accents. I didn't buy anything new for my table scape this year, rather I re-purposed items from previous years. So if you look closely, you'll recognize some things from the past. The chargers, dinner plates and pumpkin plates were all purchased from The 99cent Only Store. 

The only thing I did buy were more pumpkins. I waited until they were on clearance 75% off at Michael's. Some weren't even white, they were orange and neon green. I spray painted them cream and aged them a bit with diluted brown paint. I bought the green ones, but some had dings in them.  I concealed the imperfections by turning them around or placing pumpkins or floral accents around them.

Christmas Decorating

I usually don't blog my Christmas decorating because generally I just plain run out of time. By the time I look at the pictures and start going through them, it's already end of January. So sadly I have a few years of pictures that I've never posted. But this year, I decided to just post a few of the dining room and the tree. Two years ago, I purchased both the red oval platters and the green square appetizer plates from The 99 as well as the Christmas goblets from the Dollar Tree for a total of $18. I bought the Cowboy plaid napkins at Tuesday Morning on clearance for $8. The runner, I bought on sale from Hobby Lobby for $10. Total cost for my Christmas tablescape was $36. 

This year we bought a tree that had no top stem for an angel or star to crown the tree. Instead it had a flat expanse at the top. So instead of  looking for another tree with a stem, I used the flat top to place a nest and a snowy owl. I nestled in berries and branches to radiate out of the top of the tree and I think it turned out great. My son said that there weren't enough lights at the top to light the owl up and I have to agree with him. He's kinda hard to see at night,  so I took a picture of him in the daylight. Isn't he cute?
Here's a picture of my dog, Socks crashed out next to the tree. This is how I felt every night after shopping, wrapping, and baking, all on top of my normal workload of school, homework, basketball practice, school concerts, PTA meetings and activities, cleaning, cooking, laundry... phew!

Christmas Cookies and Treats

I couldn't let all this Christmas cheer go without some Christmas Cookies. I made these for my son's teachers, PTA parents and friends and thought I'd share them here. Surprisingly, making 8 different types of cookies is easier than it sounds with the help of two really easy stand in recipes using cake mixes. The lemon Snowflake Cookies and the Spice Cake Cookies were easy to throw together because they only have three ingredients. Cake mix, 1 egg and cool whip. I dropped the lemon cookie dough in powdered sugar and the Spice Cookie dough I didn't and instead drizzled with a Maple Syrup Icing. Both turn out soft and super moist and delicious. Enjoy!

Here are the links to some of the cookies I've blogged before. The last two, I pulled from my Betty Crocker Cookbook. Enjoy!
Mini Shortbread Bites
Lemon Snowball Cookies and Spice Cake Cookies with Maple Icing
Cinnamon Cheesecake Cookies
Red Velvet Brownies with Cookie Crumble Frosting
Blackberry Oatmeal Bars 
Spritz Cookies
Russian Teacakes

Here's one more recipe...
Gingerbread Petits Fours

More Holiday decorating ideas:
Christmas 2014
Fall Decorating 2014
Fall Decorating 2015
Fall Decorating 2016

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