Christmas Traditions

Christmas Traditions

December 20, 2011

Oh my, I think I’ve eaten enough cheese, wine and sweet treats in the past few days to last me all year! Was your weekend as busy as ours? I love this time of year and all of the socializing involved but can’t help but wish for a few more lazy pajama days in the days leading up to Christmas. I’m just thankful that the kids get two weeks off…there will definitely be some quiet mornings around here next week! We had a great time with Rachel’s family on Saturday night (although we ended up staying up just a wee bit late) and we’re treasuring our visits with them even more these days so it was definitely worth the sleepy eyes the next morning. And I’m so in love with the adorable raccoon candle holder that Rachel gifted me from Anthropologie…he’s too cute for words!

On Sunday night, we had our 4th annual progressive dinner with our great friends the Carson’s and the Ferrario’s and our combined 8 kids. It’s become a tradition that we all look forward to and it’s so great to watch our kids all grow up together! It’s also a great way to see each of our homes decorated for the holidays and I thought I’d share a few photos of our night…

We started here at our house for appetizers and a craft for the kids. This year, I decided to finally attempt Martha Stewart’s snow globes in a jar and they turned out great! I bought jars in various sizes at a local thrift store (for 5 cents apiece!) and stocked up on miniature figurines, fake snow and glitter, all of which just happen to be 50% off at this time of year. The day before our guests arrived, I spray painted each of the jar lids gold and used a rubber silicone sealant to attach figurines and trees to each lid, allowing the glue to cure overnight. After the adults had munched away on the Cheddar + Onion Galette, cheese plate and arugula beet salad that I’d made, it was time to get the snow globe party started. Each child picked a jar and added scoops of fake snow, diamond dust and glitter to their jar. We added a drop of glycerin and filled them up with distilled water, gave them a good shake and…voila!

Next stop, was dinner for the kids at Rick + Jody Carson’s house where the kiddos got to make their own mini pizzas…it’s always fun to get them involved with cooking! Jody is known for her spectacular table settings and her nutcracker table was simply amazing and perfectly festive. They’ve just finished some painting and renos of their own and I love the contrast of the smoky grey walls with the vintage white table and shield-back chairs, which you can see a tiny glimpse of below…

And our 3rd and final stop of the night was at Randy and Aprille Ferrario’s beautiful home. This year Aprille chose glamorous black and silver for the table setting and I love how moody and sparkly the grown-up table looked. The kids got to make their own ice cream sundaes and opened a third round of presents before snuggling in for some movies. Randy made the most delicious meal, starting with chestnut soup drizzled in truffle oil (made from scratch!) and a main course of chicken cordon bleu (also from scratch!)…so divine! As usual, no one had much room for dessert so we just visited and enjoyed our family time together before bringing our sleepy and over-stimulated kidlets home to rest their little heads. It’s become such a treasured tradition for us all to share together and we look forward to many years of memories to come!

Do you have any traditions, old or new, that you share with family or friends? Please share! I also wanted to share with you some of the not-too-complicated DIY projects that Rachel and I put together for Fieldstone Vintage Market earlier this month. They all would make perfect gifts and are affordable projects that you could even get older children involved with. The snow globes were such a hit on Sunday that I think we’ll have to make a few more to give as gifts to family and here are the ones made by my brood…

Snow Globe Tutorial: Martha Stewart

The handmade ornaments that we sold at Fieldstone were mostly sold out by the end of the day and we wished we’d made more! The chalkboard ornaments were inspired by ones that we’d seen floating around on Pinterest and we simply bought round plastic ornaments, painted them with 3 coats of chalkboard paint (the spray variety might be easier than brushing it on like we did) and strung them with twine. For the yarn decorations, we bought different sized star ornaments from the dollar store and wrapped them with wool yarn until they were completely covered. You’ll need a hot glue gun for the star tips. The round ones were a bit trickier and you’ll need to glue the yarn in several places to the styrofoam balls for the first few layers. We love terrariums and they made the perfect home for some vintage ornaments that we collected last season. And one of our advent calendars, inspired by one over at The Feminist Housewife, is now hanging happily in my hall way. It was much more time consuming than our other projects and Rachel and I were very happy that neither of the two that we made sold. Now we each have one and they’ll be a great new tradition for each of our families every December!

1. Likainen Parketti 2+3. Jayme Lang for Birch + Bird 4. Lily Ellis

I sprayed a few old canning jars with gold spray paint last week too…so fast and easy!…and have been using them as vases throughout my house. I think the’d also make great gifts, as do these chalkboard painted wine glasses. Goodbye tacky charms!

1. The Glitter Guide 2. Always Order Dessert

Since I’m in a sharing mood, I thought I’d finally show you the amazing map that Colleen Sawatzky‘s husband, Bob, so kindly found and delivered to us at Fieldstone! It’s the larger of two that he picked for us and I think it fits perfectly between my new sconces…what do you think? We plan on making X’s in chalk where family and friends live (like Florida for example, sniff sniff!) and it will be fun to map out future vacations and road trips to the States…

And here’s another little glimpse of my tree this year. It’s covered with lots of bronze, gold and white ornaments with some little hits of red here and there. What are your plans over the next few days? I’ve still got three last gifts to hunt for but the majority of our entertaining is over until Christmas Eve here with my extended family. I still need to figure out our menu for lunch that day but I’m thinking I’ll try out this Pumpkin Risotto with Seared Scallops just because my mouth waters every time I think about it! Happy shopping!






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