Decorating Fun (leftover from Christmas)

Christmas is always a busy time for us. Sam and I are both musicians, we both come from families with teachers, I am a teacher, we are heavily involved with church,  and we have family spread out all across the country. But one of our favorite traditions is decorating.

As a kid, some of my favorite memories are of mom, dad, and me decorating our house for Christmas. People always complemented on how much they loved our decor. Every inch of the house was/still is covered in lights, fake snow, nativity scenes, nutcrakers, little treasures, snow globes, and many other keepsakes. We always decorated the first weekend of December and ordered pizza.

Sam and I keep that tradition alive in our little family of two as well. The first time Sam helped me decorate my house for Christmas was when we were dating. He had driven 750 miles to visit, and I really really wanted us to be able to decorate for Christmas together. It was early November, but he happily agreed. Little did he know the ordeal that it was.

At that point in my life, I only had 5 Christmas trees in the house, plus the rest of the decor. We donned our Christmas pjs and set out eating pizza, and decking the halls. I have a photo of Sam, on the living room floor, diligently putting together one of the Christmas trees, lovingly fluffing each branch to make it look perfect. It’s one of my favorite memories of our dating years. He found out how crazy I was about Christmas that night. We stayed up until 3am getting the house ready for Christmas!

Fast forward a few years to Christmas 2017. We now have more trees, more rooms, and more decor!


Here are just a few of the containers that hold all of our Christmas decor.


Sam and my mom diligently preparing our new “winter wonderland” tablescape.


Sam and mom trimming our Hallmark Keepsake tree in the office. It is lovingly bedecked with out collection of Hallmark Keepsake ornaments that we have collected over the years. Growing up, mom always bought me several Hallmark ornaments each year. Then when I moved into my own home I already had a huge collection of my own ornaments!



Here is me and mom with the completed winter wonderland table in the dining room. It turned out perfectly!


Finally Our Fall Decor

This weekend I still haven’t felt the greatest, so my wonderful husband has been taking pictures so I could share our Fall decor with all of you. The thing I want to point out is that, so much of what we have is what we have collected over time. Most of our fall collection consists of things that we bought on clearance after the holidays or things from our favorite discount stores like Ross or TJ Maxx. Enjoy!

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Let’s Start with our mantle. I just love having a mantle, it is so much fun to decorate for every season.


This fun piece I picked up for $3 at Kohl’s in June.


I love throw pillows. Sam and my parents can attest to this. We have two VERY large plastic bins full of seasonal throw pillow stuffed to the brim in our loft.


Here’s another shot of the living room. The area rug was less than $50 at Ross. The cute ghost throw blanket was $9.99 at another of our favorite stores, Fred Meyer. The wall art you see is all from World Market. I paid full price for that, but I just loved it!


The wood tray on the ottoman we picked up for less than $20 at Costco. The cute pumpkins you see were one of Sam’s find. They were only $1 at Target (a store which sometimes feels like our second home).


We have so much fun decorating our end tables. The birds you see were a must have this year. They are a Target find. We have them for every holiday, and we just had to have them for Halloween.


The other table has this cute floral arrangement was originally $39.99 at Michael’s. I picked it up for $3.99 in December!


Our table is one of our favorite things to decorate. All the decor you see on the table was purchased on sale or clearance at Michael’s.


I always love to have Suzy’s Zoo calendar hanging on my pantry door.


We always have seasonal list pads on our fridge. These were only $1 each at Michael’s.


These spooky ghost lights were 50% off at Fred Meyer.



We do have to have our seasonal hand sanitizer from Bath & Body Works. We bought these this weekend for 50% off.

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This cute little Jack-o’-lantern tree and ornaments were not on sale but we fell in love with them at Hallmark Gold Crown, where we are platinum members. The “book” it’s sitting on is a storage box that I picked up at TJ Maxx for $6.99.


I just love this little corner. The flower arrangement is from our wedding. The wreath was a find. I bought it in March at Lowe’s for $5. The ghost cutout is one my grandma bought me in the 1990s and the little Jack-o’-lantern was just $0.98 at WalMart.


Here’s a better view of one of our end tables. I love the shade decorations. I just made the bats out of black cardboard paper.


I spruced up the front door with this adorable scarecrow. My mom bought this for me last year. The closer we get to Halloween the cheaper they are.

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Finally, here are our pumpkins this year. We waited as long as we could before Halloween. Sam carved the cute spider and I carved the spooky ghost.

The Day We Got the Camaro…and Pasta!

Ok…so the sad truth is that I did not take pictures of our Fall decor inside the house last night. I have been having incredibly horrible headaches the past week, and I finally went to see my doctor. He diagnosed me with “occipital neuralgia” so I am now finally taking a medication that is helping to dissapate the crazy headaches I have had for the past week.

So instead of fall decor, I’m going to tell you a little story from last Spring. First of all, you must know that Sam and I both tend to be impulse shoppers. It’s horrible, we know. And it has gotten so much better, but last spring it was still in full swing.

Sam graduated from Arizona State University last spring and we all headed to Tempe, Arizona to celebrate that. Of course we needed to rent a car while we were there. Sam and I had reserved an economy car through Costco. It was our first real car rental since we were both finally 25, and it was going to cost next to nothing. At the rental car kiosk we were in line behind Sams’s dad, Greg. After Greg had his keys, he went to wait with the rest of the family for Sam and I to get our car.

Long story short, the guy at the counter talked us in to renting the beautiful red Camaro you see below, instead of the Chevy Aveo or other tiny car we had originally reserved. Was it impulsive? Yes! In Greg’s words, ” he saw you two coming.” He was right!


Of course we took a few obligatory photos…

Then we began the process of stuffing our luggage in the trunk. Neither of us know how to pack lite…what can I say? So that was a process that took Sam’s tetris skills, and the entire back seat! But we made it. And we realized we were all starving…


So of course we went to the Old Spaghetti Factory in Phoenix, or as we lovingly call it “Spag Fac.” What you need to know is how deeply I love this restaurant. Between the sourdough bread, mizithra and brown butter, and creamy pesto salad dressing I just can’t resist.  Sam has jumped on my crazy train, and we now make a pilgrimage to this place whenever there is one near by. Then I sit down and start crossing all the locations I’ve been too off of the paper place mat. (His family thinks I’m crazy). I call it dedication!