Thursday, November 30, 2023

watching, reading, and listening


Happy Thursday, friends! I thought I'd share what I've been watching, reading, and listening to lately. 

I've been watching all of the Hallmark and Great American Family Christmas movies! Here are a few of my favorites.

My top favorites from these are The Santa Summit, A Heidelberg Holiday, Christmas in Notting Hill, A Paris Christmas Waltz, and A Christmas for the Ages. In between movies, I've been rewatching Friends at night when I go to bed and when I have a few minutes in the morning. I use YouTube TV, Frndly TV, and Max to stream all of these movies and shows. 

I only read two books this month, y'all. I blame the above mentioned things for this. I loved the two that I read, though! Click on the picture and you can see them on Amazon. 

I thoroughly enjoyed both of these books, even if they were a little predictable. I watch Hallmark movies, for the love. What makes you think I mind a predictable book? I really loved the setting in both books! 

I have been listening to Christmas music both at home and in the bookstore. Imagine that! I love my Spotify Christmas playlist. You can click here to see it, if you're on Spotify. I love The New York Trio, The Tenors, Ben Rector, Harry Connick Jr., the K Love Christmas playlist, and many, many more. I have a blue tooth speaker at work that I listen to music on. It makes it so cozy and charming in there, and I love it so much! 

I'm disappointed that I didn't read more, but hopefully I'll do more of that in December. I have so many books that I want to read! What have you been watching, reading, and listening to lately? I'd love to hear! Thanks for reading my blog, friends. Love to all! 

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

What's up Wednesday


Happy Wednesday, friends! I'm joining in with Sheaffer and Shay for today's blog post. I'll jump right in! 

What I'm eating this week:

Leftovers! Todd is out of town all week, and I've learned that when he's not here, I don't really "cook". I have things to make that are quick if the guys want anything like that, but more often than not we either eat leftovers or grab a quick bite out. (Them, not me.) I can live on leftovers for DAYS! Meanwhile, my hubby is eating well this week in Des Moines. They had Outback their first night, and last night they went to an Irish pub, which sounds super fun. I know that I would love that type of food! 

What I'm loving:

All the Christmas things! These are redundant, but some of you may be new readers, so this is for you.

This is my best time of year!

What I've been up to:

I am a lazy bum when my husband is gone. I watch a lot of tv, apparently, so my reading game is off this week. I've had time with family, I've talked to my best friend on the phone several times, I've been working, and I've been doing all the normal house things that I always do to keep our home decently clean. 

What I'm dreading:

Nothing really, other than this season going by too quickly. I feel like I live in anticipation of this time of year all year long, and then if flies by in an instant. I really want to soak up all of the time and for it to just hover at a standstill before the big day. It's not Christmas day that I love, it's the season, the kindness, and the mentality. 

What I'm working on:

I know this sounds silly, but I'm working on being present on social media again. I kind of mentally checked out for a while, and I didn't allow myself to post. It's a long story as to why, but the Lord has helped me get my act together again, and I've been posting again regularly and daily almost. Again, if you don't know me in person, this may not make sense, but one of my top spiritual gifts is the gift of exhortation. One of my favorite ways to encourage people is through a pretty picture and writing. It's a gift from the Lord, and I enjoy using it for Him to build up others. I'll share more about this next week, but like I said, I've been working on getting used to doing that kind of thing again. It's been a few months since I've stopped sharing there frequently. 

What I'm excited about: 

I have some fun Christmas things coming up! There's a work ladies lunch next week, a work Christmas party at my FAVORITE venue of all time in two weeks, and a day spent traveling to Nashville and back with my bestie to see our other bestie. I cannot wait for all of this, but again, I don't want it to go too fast! The last time we were all together was in August, and we have missed our sweet T!

What I'm watching/reading:

Come back tomorrow! I will be sharing what I'm reading, watching, and listening to this month. 

What I'm listening to:

Currently, I'm listening to dogs wrestling in the living room while I write this post in the kitchen. 

What I'm wearing:

Festive everything!

What I'm doing this weekend:

The weekend is kicking off with a Christmas parade in our town! I can't wait. It's been a few years since I've attended this fun event, and my plan is to go with any of the guys who wants to come, my dad, and my sister. 

What I'm looking forward to in December:

Todd coming home again, a Jingle Bell Jam jazz Christmas music concert at church with my dad and stepmom, Christmas movies, reading, seeing the church decorated for Christmas on Sunday....all the things!

Thanks for reading my blog, friends! Love to all.

Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Come on in! Christmas home, 2023 🎄🎄


Happy Tuesday, friends! It's my favorite time of year to decorate our home, and I always love seeing how other people decorate if you're reading this post (again this year), thank you and consider sharing your own home for those of us who love to see such things! A few things before I start: most of what I have is old. I don't buy a lot of new things to decorate with from year to year. A lot of what I have was even given to me by family members who no longer wanted the items! I may get new things to add here and there, but it's never anything fancy or expensive. Hobby Lobby's 50% Christmas is my favorite! I also am not a professional, obviously, and I am definitely not an influencer. If I had to pick a "style theme" for our home, I would consider it comfy, cozy, and lived-in. That definitely is what most works for us! The thing I love about posts like this (and seeing people's homes in person) is that each decorated home is beautiful in its own way. I love seeing what works for families and hearing why they love what they love. Are you like me in this? Also, I always want things to seem truly as they are. Anyway, without further ado, welcome to our Christmas home! 

Right before I took these pictures, I threw the pumpkins away. 🤣 

I love how the kitchen turned out this year! I do things differently from year to year for a couple of reasons; I like to change things up, for one, and I can't ever remember what to put where. Do you do this or do you keep things the same from year to year? There is no wrong way, friends! This is all part of what makes each home beautiful and unique. One thing I do similarly each year is this favorite tiered stand. 

I love the look of wreaths on cabinets! I was inspired in this by a friend; my inexpensive way to do the same was to find the cheapest wreath they sell at Hobby Lobby, and to use my own ribbon to tie around it and hold it in place. I think each wreath cost $4 and there are two here, two across from this over the oven, and one on the back of the downstairs bathroom.

Why do I love tea towels so much? I have them all over the place both here at home and in the bookstore!

I love to use all of the spaces in our home to add little touches, like in this picture above. The ornament you see was one I bought while on Nantucket last year, and I keep it out all year long, though in a less conspicuous spot. I love little keepsakes and memories from favorite trips!

I'm including this picture above again to show you the little Google nest speaker that we have in the kitchen. If you were here, you'd hear Christmas music playing at any given time! We have one in the living room as well as one in our bathroom upstairs, so that we can play music all over the house. 

We have a new Christmas tree this year! Ours from last year was shedding all over the place, so we knew it was time for a new one. Todd picked this one up last year after Christmas, and we love how it looks! It's so much easier to put together, too, which is an added bonus. I don't love the topper, but our star was too big for it, since this one is a tiny bit taller than our old one; even though I am still unsure about the hat as a topper, I'm sticking with it for now. 

As much as I love beautiful and new ornaments, I am so sentimental about all of these nostalgic ones that I will never stop using. Is there anything better than a picture ornament from your kids' elementary school days? I think not. Also, I love the blend of colored and white lights together. Our tree is not fancy and we do the lights ourselves. 

I love the little touches on the bookshelf as well, that are all so meaningful.

This Mr. and Mrs. Clause used to reside at my dad's house and were passed along to me.

And this Clifford was always Noah's favorite ornament!

These are things on the table that sit next to where Todd sits on the couch. 🤣 He's really not a Bah Humbug, but I think it's funny.

These next two are my favorite newer editions: my sons got me both of these for Christmas two years ago. One is the familiar passage from Isaiah, and the second one is the lyrics to my favorite song from my favorite Christmas movie! 

This is one of my favorite pictures of the boys when they were young. We'd gone to the zoo for Zoo Lights with my dad and Sandy, and I made them pose behind this giant snowflake. It turned out so cute that I framed it, even though it's dark, and it stays out all year long.

I think I mentioned that I got new bedding this year, and I love it! I added some pillows since I took this early in November, and I'll show a more recent one sometime this week. The wrinkles have since fallen out of the bedding also, as we've been using it for a couple of weeks now. 

And that's about it! Or at least, that's all of the pictures I took. I have small touches here and there all over the house, and all of the guys upstairs have Christmas lights in their rooms as well, but I'll leave that to your imagination. I'm including this picture below because this is how it looks when I go from one season to the next in our home. It's always a hot mess for several hours as I'm cleaning and collecting, packing away, unpacking, and placing and rearranging. Anyone else?

A few other things that I don't have pictured are the candles that I always have burning. I always pick either a cinnamon scent, or a Christmas tree scent. Those are my favorite! I talked about music, but I also will have a Hallmark Christmas movie playing at any given moment. I hope you consider sharing what your homes look like! I'd love to see yours, even if you don't typically share things like that. Thanks for reading my blog, friends. Love to all! 

Friday Favorites, 7.12.2024.

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