Monday, December 30, 2019

Life Lately: Christmas Celebrations

Hey everyone! I hope you had a wonderful Christmas with your family, or a wonderful holiday celebrating whatever you celebrate! Or just a fantastic week off from the blog :)

Today I want to share our Christmas celebrations which pretty much involves just pictures of Sophie being adorable.

We celebrated Christmas Eve with my family last Sunday and Sophie was so excited to head to Nanas house to celebrate.

These jammies didn't last too long because she reallllly hated them! We did make a grand entrance into my moms house with them on and then promptly took them off. But how cute are they?!

My Uncle Dave and his girlfriend Liz gave this adorable bunny to Sophie and she is still obsessed with it! She ran around with it like crazy on Christmas Eve and it has been her go to since!

Clearly Christmas is exhausting for her. 

On Christmas Eve we headed to Tim's family but decided to leave Sophie behind because there were so many people.

I wanted her to get some use out of the bandana I bought for her Santa pictures. She looks pretty stylish huh?

Christmas morning started off quiet at home with just the three of us.

The first thing we did was have Sophie open up her stocking. We gave her a few toys and treats and she loved checking out what was inside.

Clearly something smelled good...look at her licking her lips!

She found the good stuff!

After we let her open and then we exchanged with each other, we headed to my parents house for more gifts and Christmas lunch.

Sophie met her cousin Kai for the first time!

They got along so well. Kai wasn't too much bigger than Sophie, she's growing too fast. They ran around together a little bit. Kai is used to being around other dogs and it showed because he was so relaxed with her which made her very relaxed.

Cousin kisses!

The boys and their pups!

Our family picture :)

Christmas is completely exhausting!

We had Christmas Day Dinner with Tim's family and Sophie went to hang out with her cousin Attie. She did really well with Attie too! Here they are under the kitchen table.

It was a wonderful few days spent with family and our girl was exhausted by the end of it!

How was your holiday?

Wednesday, December 18, 2019

Ornaments That Tell Our Story

Can you believe that in one week it will be Christmas Day??? Where has this month gone?

So today I just wanted to share a little bit about our Christmas tree. 

I know there are a lot of Pinterest worthy trees out there and I constantly consider having one that just looks pretty in the future but I couldn't have a Christmas without my ornament collection. Our ornaments tell our story. So I wanted to share a bit about the ornaments we have collected over the last year to add to our tree and why I love collecting ornaments so much.

My mom and dad gave us this Mickey and Minnie wedding ornament for Christmas last year but this is the first year we've had it on the tree. I think it's so cute and as a Disney lover I'm thrilled to have it. We have a few wedding ornaments but this is one of my favorites!

Next up, we collected an ornament from each island we visited on our honeymoon. I have been collecting ornaments on our travels for years (even before I met Tim) so we made sure to find an ornament at each port.

Our ornament from St. Martin, this was a typical ornament we found on all the islands. Although we did try to switch it up a bit and not get the same type everywhere. 

In Antigua we picked this one up. See what I mean with the similarities? Sometimes it was hard to find other ornaments though.

San Juan, Puerto Rico, this one is textured and was clearly hand painted. 

I love this beach chair ornament from St. Thomas. I think it's my favorite one out of all the honeymoon ornaments.

This turtle from St. Lucia is really cute though!

We picked up two "ornaments" in Philadelphia last month. The first isn't technically an ornament but a keychain however we will use it as an ornament to remember our time in Philly. Keep this in mind if you are interested in collecting ornaments but are having trouble finding one in a certain location.

We had no trouble finding an Eagles one for Tim to bring home though! I don't mind because our tree has plenty of Patriots ornaments on it too. Dual alliances in this house.

Rachel and Ant gave us this ornament and it's so sweet to have our First Home ornament! I love how an ornament can mark the importance of a year.

I also picked up a new Harry Potter ornament after Christmas last year. I can't help being a nerd!

Now let's take a look at some of the other significant ornaments on our tree...

Our wedding invitation ornament that I purchased from OurGlassOrnaments on Etsy.

This reindeer came from my trip to France

This sweet ornament was carved by Tim's grandpa.

Here is our Disney ornament from our trip back in 2017 (that sounds like a very long time must be time to go back!)

This is our ornament from our first apartment that I bought from MommyGotTalent on Etsy.

Almost every one of our ornaments tells a story, there are very few that I purchased just because they looked pretty. While I may have one of those Pinterest-worthy trees one day, I promise that somewhere else in my house will be a tree filled with all of my travel ornaments, all of my landmark moments, and of course filled with Disney characters and Harry Potter. 

Side note: How many Belle ornaments can a girl have before she has too many Belle ornaments??

I will keep collecting because although I always talk about decluttering I am truly a collector at heart.

Also, I am thinking that someday I should get either the Disney train or the monorail to go underneath the tree.....

Have a great day everyone :)

Monday, December 16, 2019

New Etsy Wall Art by Hawkinscreations

Happy Monday again! This is the last full week before Christmas you guys! Can you believe it? We are celebrating "Christmas Eve" with my family next Sunday, less than a week away. It just seems like it crept up on us so quickly. 

Today I want to share a sign I ordered off Etsy because even though you wouldn't be able to get one before Christmas as a gift, I think it's absolutely adorable and you could order one for anyone for anytime of year! I think this would make a fantastic wedding gift, or a housewarming present or just a nice gift for yourself (which is what I did)

I've been wanting one of these signs for quite some time and am glad that I finally just ordered one. I ordered it from a really cute shop on Etsy too. Hawkinscreations has so many different signs to choose from and I chose the family name sign but there are a ton of options you can pick from.

Our third little family member checking out the new sign.

On Saturday I finally got it hung up in our kitchen. I'm not quite sure what else I'm going to put on this wall but I'm thinking of maybe adding some shelves? I'm not totally sure so if you have any ideas please share!

It does look a little lonely here but it's so nice to not just have a blank wall!

I want to know what you think I should do with this wall. It's in my kitchen and I'm thinking maybe a shelf on either side of the sign, slightly below and having seasonal decor there?

Have a great day everybody!

Saturday, December 14, 2019

Easy Christmas Bark Recipe

Today I have my work Christmas party and as part of my contribution I made Christmas Bark. It's a super easy recipe that I found on Pinterest and adjusted slightly to fit my taste so I thought I'd share it with all of you in case you are looking for something really easy to bring to your holiday party this year.

Here's what you will need:

Baking Pan (I used a cookie sheet)
Tin Foil
Chocolate Chips (3 cups)
Shortening ( 2 Tbsp)
Pretzels (I purchased the mini pretzels and crushed them up)
Christmas sprinkles

**Note: You can really include anything in the bark. The original recipe I found had peanuts, but I don't like peanuts mixed with chocolate (I know I'm weird!) so I didn't include them. You could certainly include different candies other than M&Ms this is just what I used!**

First, I lined my cookie sheet with tin foil.

Ready to get started.

I took my three cups of chocolate chips (I had a little bit over the three cups, but I just used an entire bag of Nestle chocolate chips and it all fit on the baking sheet.

I poured these into a microwaveable bowl and heated the chocolate up in one minute increments. After two minutes I just did a final thirty seconds to finish melting the chocolate. You'll want to stir each time and you'll know it's done when the chocolate is smooth.

The length of time will depend on your microwave so keep an eye on your chocolate!

Next, add in your shortening and microwave in ten second increments until smooth. Mine took 20 seconds and it was good to go!

Next,  pour your chocolate onto your cookie sheet and start adding your extras.

I used red and green M&Ms.

These are the mini pretzels I used.

These are the sprinkles I used. 

One of the tips I read was to make sure to press firmly down on everything that you put in the chocolate otherwise it would not stay when it firmed up. I pressed down on the M&Ms and pretzels and some were hidden inside the chocolate as well. I didn't press on the sprinkles though since they were so small it would've taken me forever.

Then it's time to let the bark firm up! I placed it in the fridge for two hours. 

Here is the end result:

Once the bark is firmed, just pull it apart into a bunch of smaller pieces! 

Overall, a super easy recipe!