Monday, December 31, 2012

Four Christmases

One - A Brown Christmas

We spent the Saturday night and Sunday before Christmas with my parents and two brothers. First, Saturday night we went to Charlotte Motor Speedway and zMax Dragway to see their "Speedway Christmas". It took a very very long time to get through the line to even drive through the track and see all the lights. But we did wait for the Saturday night just before Christmas to go. Next time we will try to go a little earlier, and I would recommend so too.


Then before we knew it it was "Christmas Morning"! Lucas was taking his time opening his gifts, although he was doing pretty well at tearing off some of the wrapping paper and then handing it to me. But he would want to play with the present he opened instead of opening another one. I was busy helping him so I didn't get many photos, but Unk Nick got Lucas a cool digital camera of his very own. And further below are some of the photos taken with it. Haha.

Grandpa and Nana with Lucas

And here are the photos from Lucas' camera!

With the Unks, Nick and Jon!

It's very sensitive.  :)

Two - Just the three of us

Hubby and I stayed home this Christmas Eve and Christmas Day with Lucas - no traveling whatsoever. It was important to us to spend this time together and wake up in our own home Christmas day, and not rush around to see other family. Just a low-key time for us.

First things first...Breakfast. We made some scrambled eggs and potatoes since they were quick and easy, and the boy was hungry {me too}.

Then we got straight to the gifts. We concentrated on Lucas this year, only filling each other's stockings with little things for us. And again, it took some time unwrapping all his presents. But this time I got photos. {He wanted to play with my camera more than his toys though.} Santa did good this year, although he didn't help me eat all my cookies...ugh. 

And a Booger shot!!  :)

Our other kids also got gifts this year too. Elijah and Oliver got a cat tower and Miley got a new bed, both from Costco. So far the boys haven't used the tower too much, although I've heard them scratch at it a bit I haven't seen them sleep in it. And Miley only likes her bed when Lucas isn't in it.

Three - A Newman Christmas

The Saturday after Christmas we spent time with Hubby's family.   A lot of them came into town to visit his grandmother, so we got to see some of the extended family too.  Sunday morning we did "Christmas" again and Lucas got to open his gifts from Santa.

Four - Godmothers' time
Saturday afternoon Lucas' godmothers, Holli and Kenda, both came to visit so we could give them his Christmas presents to them.  He worked hard to create a Masterpiece for them! 
They each have one half of it.  I really hope they enjoy them.

And they also brought him a Christmas present.  Oh boy, did he love it!  It had to be charged up first so he kept trying to get it to go himself and decided to push it around like his other cars in the meantime.  :)

Overall, this boy had a great Christmas x4.  Santa and his family did a great job of keeping him spoiled.

Friday, December 28, 2012

After Christmas Sales

I chose to go out on December 26th to see what I could get for next year's decor.  No, I did not get up early to get to the stores once they opened.  I actually took my time and left the house some time after 10am, closer to 11am I think?

Anywho, my first stop was Lowes.  I had gotten two of the huge ball ornaments for outdoor hanging prior to Christmas, and I snatched up these additional hanging outdoor ornaments at their reduced price!  Two wreaths and two snowflakes made out of bells.  They are all blue/silver so they go together perfectly.  I think one of the cashiers was a bit upset that I snatched up all the blue ones.  I also picked up an outdoor timer for lights and some clips to hang the lights as well.  Oh, and some hooks to hang all these ornaments, which will be used the rest of the year to hang planters.  All for <$40.


Then I bravely made my way to Walmart...  It wasn't bad at all, possibly because I'm in a small town and not one of the major city stores.  This is where I picked up a whole cart-full of stuff for 50% off.

Wreath box and Storage box - $9.95 each, regular priced since they never go on sale, they don't consider these "holiday" items even though they are red and green.  I already had a wreath box but wanted to pick up another one for my purchase(s) below.  And another storage box to put some of this stuff in.

Wreaths {for windows} - I had been looking at wreaths the last week or two so that I can place them at each window at the front of the house.  Having to get nine (9) of those can get quite pricey, plus whatever ribbon/bows to decorate it.  So when I saw these as an alternative for <$4 each I scooped them up!  They are non-traditional of course, being red and made from tinsel material, but I love them.  And then I found some silver ribbon to go with it.  I actually picked up three rolls of the ribbon (at 25ft lengths for $2.50 each) but only needed to use one complete roll to hang all nine wreaths from my windows.  {Yes, I got these for next year but just had to see how they would work so put them up the same day!}  Now when I get the time I just might attempt to make some actual bows out of the remaining ribbon to tack on to the wreaths too. 
          Side note: I had set out to hang my wreaths using ribbon just like I've done, since I have the windows that open inward.  The ribbon just clamps in place by the window.  I really didn't want to try using suction cup hangers or the other methods I've been seeing, although the floating look is nice.  This is a cheaper method I think.  Next year though, I'd like to figure out how to open the top pane of the windows and clamp the wreaths from the top, so they sit higher.


Wreath {for above mantle} - This was too cute not to pick up for $6.49.  I think it will go great above the mantle.


Wreath {UNC} - This was a find for my Dad...  $8 and it's missing one of the appliques but I'm sure he'll love it.


Wall Hangings {Penguin, Santa Hat, Stocking} - These are made out of the same tinsel material as the window wreaths I picked up.  Also $3.74 each.  I'm sure I'll find places to hang these on the front of the house too. I love the little Penguin!  They also had a Gingerbread Man, but I opted not to get him...but...I did go back and get him!


Yard decor {Penguin, Santa} - For $7.50 each and since I do not yet have any yard pieces these will be a great start.  I'm not really interested in the inflatables as that just seems like it will use up a lot more energy for only a little bit of use {I see people usually have them displayed "full" for only a few hours each day}.  I prefer the sturdy tinsel displays like these, and they fold up for easy storage too.  I just opened up the Penguin and he is so cute!  Definitely need some extension cords for these though, less than two feet of cord it has.

Photo Photo

Garland - $6.49 for an 18ft length of prelit multi-color.  We have one for the mantle currently that is white colored lights, so now I can swap them out.

Lights - NONE.  I really didn't bother looking at lights.  We have several that I've picked up over the years, including some bush lights.  But I'm not sure we will really be putting up too many on the house until at least Lucas gets old enough to really enjoy it {or until more houses build up in our neighborhood so people can actually see them}.

Ornaments - NONE.  I really should pick up more of the shatterproof ornaments.  But considering what we already have and that we could only decorate the top two-thirds of the tree this year {thanks to Lucas} I think we can make do with what we have.

So for Walmart, I only spent about $100 and picked up a lot of Christmas decor for next year.  I really enjoy planning how to make the new house pretty - even though no one else can see it since we are the only house on the cul-de-sac.  It's more for myself anyway!  ;)

Some potential finds for the future: 
  • I'd really like to find a pair of small spruces or topiaries for right outside the front door, either live or artificial trees for year-round would be nice.  But they are sooo pricey!
  • We have a lamp post outside our garage so I would like to find something to decorate it with - I may be able to use one of my prelit garlands.
  • We also need to pick up some spot lights to place in the yard to point at the house.  {A must!}
  • Not sure yet if I want to do any pathway markers.  They have so many to choose from.
  • I really really really love this Cookie Monster figure from Lowes.  I wanted to get it before Christmas but didn't.  And they had no more when I went.  :(  There was even an Elmo to match!

1.54-ft Tinsel Sesame Street Cookie Monster Christmas1.54-ft Tinsel Sesame Street Christmas Elmo

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