Tag Archive for: decor

Christmas is over-what’s next on the list?

Every year, around August, I start thinking about and planning for Christmas. Biceps and I begin discussing that year’s Christmas photo  and I begin gathering costuming and necessary accoutrements.


And, I have a theory about Christmas:

Lists rule, disorganization drools.


List for 2012 Christmas Card Photo:

1. Angel Wings
2. Large Tighty-Whities
3. My “dress”-a white sheet
4. Halo
5. Red Jeans
6. Cape
7. Devil Horns
8. Triton

Totally normal Christmas Photo shoot list for most families, I assume.


And sometime after Thanksgiving, I start scheming for Bicep’s birthday-(also known as my “pre-Christmas”), because he’s a Christmas Eve baby.

List for Bicep’s Birthday:

1. Egg pancakes for Birthday breakfast (Greiman tradition)
2. Some sort of weaponry present
3. Some sort of clothing item present that he will probably return
4. Chocolate cake with chocolate frosting with chocolate ice cream (plus more chocolate options, just in case)
5. Back-up Chocolate


Now, if you know anything about Biceps and I-you know that we are frugal. Christmas is budgeted throughout the year, with a little set aside each month. That way, when present making (or for this year-present buying) comes around, we don’t go into a sticker-shock-induced-coma.


Usual List for homemade presents:

1. 95 Ripe Bananas (boy, do the cashier’s give us a weird look)
2. 8 Bags Pretzel Rods
3. 4 Packages Almond Bark
4. 5 Bags Flour
5. 5 Bags Sugar
6. 3 Jars Molasses
7. 2 Bags Peppermint Candy
8. Etc….


And then there’s the Thank You Note List for Gifts Received (past, present and future):

1. Golden Toilet Lighter from Daniel
2. Self-Adhesive Mustache Pack from Christy
3. Portrait of a Sheriff from Beau
4. Inappropriately Shaped Pine Cone Ornament from Carisa
5. Pooping Penguin from Justin
6. 1966 Ford Mustang from Biceps


But now, the carefully planned out lists have been fulfilled and thrown away. The presents have been unwrapped, the meals have been eaten and the house is silent.

And, it’s time to put all the Christmas cheer back in its appropriate box, wrap it up in tissue paper and store it-once more-up in the attic, until next Christmas.

And I am left with a “Christmas-less” house-until next August when the planning begins again. I don’t have a list anymore. It’s a little disconcerting.

What’s next on your list?

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Christmas on the Cheap-Decor Ideas

Each year, I love to create new decor ideas for Christmas. The stores are filled with glittery goodness, and I like to keep my wallet full of my hard-earned greenery goodness.

If you get my drift. (That’s no snow joke.)

Here are a few ways that I’ve decorated our house for pennies on the dollar.


My Pretty Paper Xmas Trees were very inexpensively made. They grace my fireplace mantle and add a lot of color to my gray living room. Each are made from dowel rods, scrap plywood, wrapping paper and hot glue.


This is what the trees look like this year; surrounded by vintage deer, tinsel and very breakable bulbs (knowledge courtesy of ninja cats).

I made the Wooden “Peace” Garland that’s on the  Broken Mirror Art from a felled tree, spray paint and stencils.


These are the pieces close up to the Wooden Christmas Garland before I polyurethaned them.


This DIY Vintage Aluminum Christmas Wreath was made from Aluminum foil, cardboard and leftover red bulbs. Super cute, lightweight and cheap!


Simple, different, pretty and sparkly. My Silver Twig Wreath is a fanciful addition to our front door. And yes, I like fanciful things very much, let me tell you.


I also made this Retro Christmas Stocking for Biceps…

…and one for me using leftover felt and vintage ric-rac. They were both very simple to make and much better than the gigantic knit one Biceps insisted on using-hoping Santa would fill it to the brim. The size of this Retro Christmas Stocking is much more practical, although certain people aren’t happy about it.


To match the stockings, I also made a Retro Christmas Tree Skirt for our secondary tree with the same felt and ric-rac. This tree skirt just took a few minutes to make.


Throughout out the house, if there are any remaining surfaces untouched by Christmas, I fill jars with inexpensive ornaments picked up over the years at flea markets and garage sales. I add some sparkly tinsel and a few varieties of colors of bulbs and my house is ready for Christmas.

I have always said, “You can never have too many bulbs and you can never have too much Christmas.” I’m sure you’ve heard me say that, right?

I hope you’ve been inspired or at least your creativity has been sparked from some of these ideas. I would love to see and hear how you are decorating on the cheap this year!


If these parties are up, I link to them! (Here’s my complete Linky Party Page):
Monday: Crafts Keep Me SaneThe Better BakerSkip to My LouDIY ShowoffSay NotSumo’s Sweet StuffEtcetorizeSew ChattyBrassy AppleFlour Me With LoveCreating my WayMad in CraftsOur Delightful HomeSew Can DoIt’s So Very CheriCraft O ManiacPolly Want a Crafter, Tuesday: Craft EditionInspiration Board New Nostalgia Lettered Life Coastal CharmTip Junkie Ladybug BlessingsHope Studios Todays Creative Blog, Wednesday: Someday Crafts Day2DayJoysJillify It Junk in the TrunkWe are that Family Frugally SustainableSew Much AdoFine Craft Guild The Thrifty HomeMy Girlish Whims Quick, Easy, Cheap & HealthyTrendy Treehouse, Thursday: Somewhat SimpleNo Minimalist Here A Glimpse InsideThe Mommy ClubThe 36th AvenueCheap Chic HomeBeyond the Picket FenceFireflies and Jellybeans House of Hepworths The Shabby Chic Cottage, Friday: My Repurposed LifeIt’s a HodgePodge LifeThe Shabby NestJust Wingin’ ItOne Artsy MommaFrench Country CottageFinding FabulousPassionately ArtisticPetals and PicotsSimply DesigningLittle Becky HomeckyMy Romantic HomeBacon TimeSimply Living, Saturday: Polkadot PrettiesTatertots and JelloCreate and InspireBe Different, Act NormalCraft EnvyFunky Junk InteriorsPetites Passion, Sunday: Under the TableNatural MothersMopping the Floor


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Christmas Clean-Up

It’s time for it to come down. The tree, the holly, the mistletoe, the lights. All of it.
Granted, I have been listening to and enjoying Christmas music since before Thanksgiving. But, it’s time for all of it to be packed up into boxes and stored away in the attic.


I have had my fill of keeping the cats away from the tree, closing them off from certain parts of the house, or cringing when I hear an ornament hit the floor.
So, I start off by corralling all of my Christmas miscellany onto the dining room table. There are jars, platters and dishes full of bulbs, balls, and tinsel.


After pouring a glass of wine, I turn on Billie Holiday and assess my opponents.


I can never remember how I got all of that into there.
Max and Bianca entertain themselves as they jump in and out of the empty boxes and chase the run-away tinsel.


Certain guilty parties incriminate themselves over and over…


…and over.


Our Christmas ornaments span the years-beginning with my first out-of-college roommate and I co-investing in maroon and gold ornaments purchased from Wal-mart. We spent $5 between us to decorate our tree. That was high-living for us back then.


Now, black and white Ikea balls, along with sparkling blue and silver ornaments have been added to the Christmas decor mix. Throw in a dash of Grandma’s vintage ornaments, vintage deer from the flea market and our yearly ornament purchase, and I am running out of uses for all of them.


Soon, everything is packed away, taped up and ready for next year’s frivolities. It almost feels as if Christmas had never happened.
Except for the tinsel I keep finding squirreled away in nooks and crannies due in part to my weird cats Bianca and Max.
I don’t think they can let Christmas go either. I suppose we are good for each other.

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The Christmas Crazies-Help!

Dear Readers:

I am sure you don’t ever feel like this:
that you own a brain of mush due to too many list-making events,
that you want to bargain/convince yourself that a nap over a work-out is a better investment and
that you wonder how everyone else is so put together while you feel like a flopping fish.

I am also sure your living room never looks like this when you are trying to decorate for the upcoming festivities-while on a short time line and a small budget.
And you hope your mother-in-law that is staying with you for a month doesn’t feel neglected as you try to reconfigure your Christmas trimmings-introducing all non-breakables due to the new naughty kittens that have become a part of your life.

But, I want to be honest, dear readers. That is exactly how I feel-mushy brain, wanting a nap and floppy fish-like. When I am tempted to complain, it’s great to remember just who the heck is in control.
And it ain’t me.
There is so much changing in Biceps’ and my life right now that I’m not sure which end is up. (And I usually label those sorts of things.)
Throw in a dash of new babies being born, a broken car windshield, a church departure, both sides of the families coming in for the holidays, Bicep’s two new careers and a “home-made project” that is overwhelming…and you’ve got my yesterday.

So, since your house is probably all decorated, your life feels in control and your brain is not mush-please pray for me and my weakness. I need your help. I am leaning on you-and of course, God. He’s pretty good to me when I want to whine about stuff like this.

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