Christmas Decorations

Merry Christmas you guys!  Are you still assembling toys?!  We are knee-deep in Lego building and chocolate candy eating.  Hashtag that my version of heaven!  Seriously.

I just wanted to take the time to document our 2014 Christmas decorations.  Usually I wait till the end of January to do this.  I fully embrace that whole better-late-than-never attitude.  And since I love looking back at old Christmas decorations and trees and everything in between, I figured you might too.  So don’t put away your Santa hat just yet….let’s get in that holiday spirit for one more day before breaking out the bubbly, kazoos, and glitter!

We have found a groove for the exterior decorations.  And this year we just added more lighted garland to the railings on the front porch.  I think next year I would like to add some lights for the upper windows somehow.  Maybe a spotlight?  Maybe twinkling wreaths?  Candles in the windows?  Jury is still out.

If you are a die-hard Bower Power fan, you’ll notice that we got new front porch chairs!  WAHOO!  I found them on clearance at Lowe’s and got them for a fraction of the cost.  Since they were already open box items and off-season, they sold them to me for $100 each (including the new cushions).  Usually they are $530 for both with the cushions….just the cushions are $100 each new….so yeah.  good deal.

I still love our red berry wreaths and how they pop on the front door.  To me they are just classic and timeless.

The topiaries are still going strong after they got converted to our Halloween silly monsters…and with some new red ribbon, they are really very stately.

Once you come inside the front doors, our foyer got a bit more than usual in terms of Christmas decor.  First….we decided that since we had such a spacious foyer that we should put some trees flanking the doors.  Jeremy built the boxes and we bought the cheap $20 trees from Walmart for inside.  I covered the bases with ‘snow’ aka pillow fiberfill and put some lights on them for a very classic look.

I have to admit that when I saw how the paint job turned out (I used a bright red paint and a dark brown glaze) I kinda got this crazed look in my eyes and now I want to paint the town red.  Literally.  The whole town.   I’ll post a tutorial on how we built these soon…they are really easy and if you use exterior wood, they would be great for use outside!

On our foyer table I put all our silver ornaments.  Oh and you should see the light show off those disco balls when we open the front door.  I pull a John Travolta every time.  It’s magical.  (the lights…not my 70’s dance moves).   In order to keep them all corralled on the table, I put a mirror that has a little lip for the frame.  It’s a trick that I love.

If you have kids that are like mine….um….into deconstruction….then here is a tip to add Christmas sparkle…take a photo of your breakables and hang that instead.  You will still get your bling on without worrying about the smash-factor.  Most of these are plastic and I avoid putting out anything that would make me really upset if it got sacrificed.

Beyond the foyer table is our stairway and I got crazy with my Christmas leftovers.

The stairway railing is just covered in everything that I had in boxes….white flowers, green ribbon, gold fruit and instrument picks.  I wrapped and pieced and in the end, it reminds me of a Martha Stewart color scheme.  It’s kinda Eastery too so maybe I’ll just keep it up till then :)

Oh and at night….we get our glow on.

I moved our little tree table into our foyer nook and it was a dangerous proposition but the boys have pretty much left it alone.  There was one incident when Weston thought that maybe he should bring me all the trees….but after he realized that monster trucks are much more fun.

I took these photos right before Jeremy’s birthday.  I totally shop for him…but I wrap for me :)

The best part about this little tree village is that they are not too uniform but they are pretty cohesive.  Most of the trees are collected over time at various places (TJMaxx, Target, Lowe’s) but some are homemade too.

Next to the foyer is our dining room and I set it up this year with a different scheme.

The fruity garland and the candlestick holders were all my mom’s.  They must be at least thirty years old because I remember them when I was little.  I put my more natural-looking trees on the buffet….aka the smallest buffet known to man.

The table runner is a little too short…as are the green armchairs….I’m still looking for the perfect head dining chairs.

I got the runner at TJMaxx for three bucks and the red chargers are from Walmart.

I used the white nutcrackers to give the table a little more height and they don’t block conversation which is nice.

On the other side of the railing, it leads to our living room.

I hung this wreath…it’s the only one we have out with breakable ornaments.  It was on the door in the living room but in a non-kid zone…so it’s safer than most things in our house.

On our living room console table, I put some other cheap chotchkes.  The gingerbread house is from Goodwill….as is the snowman….the glass bowl is from Walmart and the ornaments are just plastic.  The red beaded garland is from Target (after Christmas discount sale of course!).

And our tree…..

Will requested a rainbow tree with a star on top.  I interpreted that as “put all our ornaments on it and call it a rainbow”.

The star on top was hard for me to find.  I wanted the regular lighted star (no LED’s please) and just plain white plastic on the outside.  I couldn’t find one so I opted for an LED version from Walmart and bought a pack of 20 lights for the inside.  Then I had to break it open, glue all the lights inside and glue the star back together.  In the end, I like it much better and even though it is a cheesy star, the kids LOVED it.  I did add a ‘rainbow element’ to the tree with the ribbon….and Will said that we have the bestest tree ever so I think it was a success.

The thing that everyone asks about is the big round glowing lights….they are ping pong balls.  I took a xacto knife and cut a little X in them and had the boys pop them on the lights.  I got a package of 144 on ebay for $8 with shipping…so it was a cheap but fun little project.

Overall, I do love our tree this year.  Jeremy said it’s his favorite yet because it’s really fun.  I love the tradition of letting the kids decide the theme.  I wonder what Will (and Weston!) will ask for next year.  It will be crazy to hear their requests and probably even crazier to blend the two.  It’s probably gonna be a fourwheeler-chocolate tree….or a spiderman-lollipop tree….

Our new mantel came in real handy this year.  You heard me say that this is the sole reason that I wanted a mantel and it did not disappoint.  I even saved last years gift cards and ordered matching stockings for the little boys and everything just felt so cozy and christmasy in the living room.

The only other decoration that we had was in the kitchen.  I like to switch out these shelves for the seasons (if you follow me on instagram, I hashtag it #bowershelfie) and it got a little more into the rainbow spirit.

Overall, I am kinda bummed that we have to take all this festive stuff down so soon.  I usually wait till the end of the month but this year, it is a major goal to get organized and we have a looming deadline for something BIG.  I will have to share it with you soon.  No….I’m not pregnant….just waiting on the all-clear to give you all the details.  Oh and I am trying to get back on the blogging schedule so I will be posting regularly throughout the week!  Now go take pics of your own stuff before taking it down….you’ll be happy you did :)