Saturday, December 15, 2007

a busy season

so this is the time of year that my craft room looks totally nasty, because i don't leave myself time to clean it up with all the crafts, etc. i do. (actually when i'm done with a project, and it's 1am, cleaning up is the last thing that i want to do, so everything just piles up. so i'm kind of embarrassed to show you this picture, but i's a part of my life, and it might make some of you feel way better about yourselves because you
rs can't be this bad! (merry christmas!) p.s. i do try to keep the main part of my house reasonably clean because i can't close the door on the family room!
so, total i've done (just showing you how absolutely CRAZY i am, seriously, i do this to myself every year!)

*4 stockings (actually I made ours last year, but i made 4 for matt's brother and his family this year)
*1 outfit for gracie (for pictures with santa)
*4 pairs of pajama pants for us to wear on the polar express (you can see the red fleece in the picture above is the boys fabric, and the green with red polka dots is for the girls)
*i've edited over 800 pictures between family pictures and pictures with santa
*i've created 13 different christmas cards for different families
*i created a whole new line of scrapbook paper for dream street papers
(coming in feb 2008!)
*3 hand bags for teacher gifts and 1 diaper bag for a baby shower
*6 aprons for my nieces, gracie, and molly (our neighbor)
*12 bags to hold m&m's (and a super cute poem i'll post on the bottom) for our neighbors and friends around here
*1 advent calendar, 3 cards, and 3 scrapbook layouts for samples for the scrapbook company, creating inspirations, that i work for
*a rag quilt from the leftover fleece from the pj pants (couldn't let it go to waste!)
*10 ribbon ornaments
*12 chipboard picture ornaments
*and who the heck knows how many dozens of cookies, appetizers, and dinners for parties whew!

FOR A BAG OF M&M'S (inside a fabric bag i made)

as you hold these candies
in your hand
and turn them,
you will see...
the M becomes a W
and E then a 3.
they tell the christmas story.
it's the one i'm sure you know
it took place in a stable
a long, long time ago.
the E is for the East
where the star shone so bright.
the M is for manger,
where the baby Jesus slept that night.
the 3 is for wisemen
bearing gifts, they say they came.
W is for worship, hallelujah,
praise be His name.
so as you eat these candies
or share them with a friend,
remember the meaning of
it's a love story that never ends.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

it's beginning to look a lot like christmas

this year has been exciting in many ways. this is the first year we have had a real tree, and the first year, I really decorated it. the last five years we have had this tiny fake tree with modge podge i've been collecting the last couple years, and found some "must haves" to bring this tree together. all of my ornaments have a reason or a symbol. i used only red, green, and a touch of silver. i also wanted it to be very whimsical with a touch of dr. seus-ness. i smile every time i look at it. even the pictures don't do it justice. i love it. but i love all the meanings behind it even more...

here they are:

1. snowflake - this will be our first white christmas...and we think the snow flakes are so pretty.

2. tree skirt - again, more snow flakes...and some embellishments that i will talk about later.

3. candycane - the candy cane is a stick of hard, white candy. white to symbolize the virgin birth and sinless nature of Jesus. the shape 'J' to represent the precious name of Jesus who came to earth as our Savior. it also represents the crook of the Good Shepherd which he uses to reach down into the ditches of the world to lift out the fallen lambs who, like sheep, have gone astray. the original candy cane had three small red stripes which are the stripes of the scourging Jesus received by which we are healed, and a large red stripe that represents the shed blood of Jesus so that we can have eternal life.

4. holly berry -
red is the first color of Christmas. red is deep, intense, vivid. it is the color of the life giving blood that flows through our veins. it is the symbol of God's greatest gift. Christ gave His life and shed His blood for us that we might have eternal life.

5. green glitz - i love glitz, and the lights make it sparkle and so lovely! plus, this is gracie's favorite color.

6. nail - (here is a poem that a dear friend showed me)

it's Christmas time at our house
and we're putting up the tree.

i wish I could find one simple way
to remember Christ's gift to me.

some little sign or symbol
to show friends stopping by,
the little babe was born one day
but really came to die.

some symbol of His nail pierced hands,
the blood He shed for you and me...
what if i hung a simple nail
upon my christmas tree?

a crimson bow tied 'round the nail
as His blood flowed down so free
to save each person from their sin

and redeem us for all eternity

i know it was His love for us
that held Him to that tree,
but when i see this simple nail
i'll remember He died for me.

7. jack with santa (who's a symbol of love and giving)

8. star/bow -
the star reminds us of the night of Christ's birth. the bow reminds us of the bond of perfection which is love.

9. pickle - a pickle used as an ornament on the tree seems odd at first, but this is an
old german tradition. when decorating the tree, it w
as a practice to hang the pickle ornament last, hidden among twigs. the first child on christmas eve to find the pickle ornament would get to open the first gift.

10. gracie with santa

11. homemade ornament - i saw ornaments like this in the pot
tery barn catalog for like $10 each, so i decided to make 8 unique ribbon ornaments of my own for a ton cheaper.

12. diamond - not exactly my best friend, matt is, but i love them any way. they look fabulous twinkling in the lights. also, you can see my garland that is pom poms (thank you martha stewart!) i love how it makes the tree a little dr. seus-ish.

13. metal stars - with the words: faith, hope, love, peace, & joy. these are the several meanings of christmas to me.

14. red star - again, LOVE the sparkles, it's red, and it's a star...i love stars. also, my mom gave me all of these ornaments.

15. poinsettia - the botanical name, Euphorbia pulcherrima means "very beautiful." christmas is very beautiful to me, and i wanted my tree to reflect the beauty of the season.

16. pom poms - i love to make things pretty, and i found the tree skirt at the store, but thought it needed some more pizzaz! i love how the skirt ties in all the red and green, and glitz and glamor of the tree.

thanks for reading...sorry it was so long, but i wanted to document this for myself. happy decorating!

Sunday, December 2, 2007

it's the hap-happiest time of the year!

sorry my blogger friends that it has been so long since i last updated. i just got back from az 2 nights ago, and i've been busy ever since. i was so busy in az too! i took about 45 different families pictures including all the pictures with santa. i love what i do, but i was a little too busy...matt says that next year i need to cut back....i think i will just stick with pictures with santa.

any hoo...this is one of my favorite pictures, not only b/c it's my kids and all my nieces and nephew, but because it shows a true variety of personalities, and stages of life.

jack - "mom, why are you making me do this?"
kyson - "why the heck are they all crying?"
grace - "i'm LOVIN' this, CHEESE!"
lily - "mimi, help me!!!"
carlee - "mom, put me down!"
claire - "who is this guy! WAHHH!"
camree - "this big chubby guy is not my daddy! WAHHH!!!"

isn't this the best?! LOVE IT!!! poor santa got his feelings hurt after this one!