Ladies, I cannot believe it is 2 days until Christmas. TWO DAYS. My word this year has flown by. And the month? Wasn’t it Thanksgiving just yesterday?
Well, today is just about all things festive. We’re talking Christmas hand print art, a Christmas recipe, and a Christmas home tour!
CHRISTMAS HAND PRINT ART
Let’s start out with my favorite Christmas decorations in our home, the hand print art that our family has made together over the years.
Making these canvases is definitely one of my very favorite traditions. We started with the Christmas tree when Carter was 3, and we’ve obviously done several since. He loves doing them, and I love thinking about him having these when he has his own family, although I can’t imagine parting with them. Chris and I get it on the fun too to make the pieces even more special. I haven’t hung the one yet that we’ve done this year, but it was all Carter’s idea. We’re not quite finished with it, so I hope to share it on a Friday Favorites sometime soon!
Here’s a straight on shot of all of them for you to get a good look!
I basically just search “hand print art” on Pinterest and then use the images as inspiration. Some of the canvases are all paint, but the Santa and the snowmen family also incorporate scrapbook paper that I added with Mod Podge. The Christmas tree is all of Carter’s 3 year old little hands on top of each other, and the Christmas lights are his fingerprints! The snowman family is all of our feet (with scrapbook paper scarves and hats), and the red birds are mine and Carter’s hands.
You can pick up canvases at a local craft store (I get mine at Hobby Lobby), or you can order canvases of varying sizes HERE. We just use regular ol’ acrylic paint, and we hang them up with these handy dandy velcro strips, which are totally easy to use and don’t leave any residue behind.
Here’s a picture of the proud artist a couple of years ago. This manger scene is my favorite one we’ve done. My foot is Mary, Chris’s foot is Joseph, and Carter’s foot is the angel. Carter’s hand prints are also the animals.
This particular canvas is extra special to me because my sweet friend Manda’s family also has a canvas manger scene of their own. On Manda’s last Christmas on earth, our friend group rounded up a big ol’ box of fun for Manda’s family to use while at home during the Christmas season. Games, books, puzzles, things to bake…..we wanted them to have all of the items necessary for making memories.
Narci and I went over to deliver the box of memories and spent a little bit of time with the family. Narci took Santa pics of them all (yep, we had a Santa come to the house!), and I worked with the family to do a couple of these hand print scenes with all of their hand and foot prints. It was such a special time, and I know it meant the world to Manda to be able to give her children those Christmas memories. She was the most incredible mom, and even at her very sickest, she made sure they felt treasured and loved.
Each and every year, one of my favorite traditions is attending the girl’s Christmas party that Shay hosts. Several years ago the theme was Ugly Christmas Sweaters, we all brought appetizers, and I won the recipe contest!
This recipe could easily fall under “dessert” or “appetizer”.
Click HERE for the recipe. If you can even call it that. You layer 3 items: Softened cream cheese, caramel, and Heath pieces (without chocolate). I bought the caramel sauce in a tub by the apples in the produce section, and I bought the Heath pieces already chopped up like that in the baking aisle (by the chocolate chips).
I piled up the layers in a pretty pie plate, placed the plate on a wooden platter, and surrounded it with red and green apples. A big shout out to Jill (one of my high school besties) who gave me the recipe. She said it was always a crowd pleaser, and boy was she right. Love you, Jill!
CHRISTMAS HOME TOUR
I planned on doing a new Christmas home tour this year since I’ve changed a couple of things up here and there. But y’all. I’ve been sick for over 2 weeks…AND I WAS REALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLY sick for 1/2 of that time. Thankfully I’m feeling MUCH BETTER now, but my ears are still giving me trouble (I can’t hear a thing), and on Saturday I was diagnosed with a severe ear infection. Good times.
So instead of a new home tour this year, you’re getting a recap of last year’s home tour.
We’ll actually just be focusing on our family room and kitchen today. In an effort to make the holidays a bit more simple, I decided to just decorate the main two areas that we spend most of our time in, and I loved the results.
There’s pretty much nothing I love more than being cuddled up on the couch during the Christmas season with my family. Stockings are hung, a fire is typically going, and twinkle lights give a glow to everything. But we’ll get to the family room in a minute…let’s start in the kitchen!
I grew up with my mom pulling a nutcracker collection out every year at Christmas, but I’ve never had any of my own. When I saw this little guy, I scooped him up immediately because I loved his little pine cone hat and skirt and thinks he looks so regal! Click HERE if you’d like to add to or start a collection of your own!
I love setting up little vignettes, and the wooden tray was the perfect station to house some festive plates and mugs.
This entire station has us ready for cozy nights at home, just soaking up family time together.
Festive kitchen towels are an inexpensive way to freshen up a space as the season changes, and this set of 3 was great to add another pop of red to the space. I picked up the white set and the red set.
There are several little touches I added throughout the family room as well.
My favorite little area just might be the live poinsettias in this vintage red box.
And who doesn’t love a truck with a tree.
Pom Pom garlands and a Merry Christmas banner make the mantle so festive.
Carter loves decorating the tree, so he always gets in on the fun.
This Christopher Radko set added some great color and sparkle to the tree.
One of our favorite traditions as a family is adding a new ornament to the tree every year for Carter. Something that signifies the year in some way.
This makes decorating the tree each year extra special because we get to take a walk down memory lane! We always write the year on the ornament, so as we are decorating, we can remember when and why we bought the ornament. A couple of years ago, I got to add my own ornament to the tree. When I was on my girl’s trip in New York, we all picked up an NYC ornament at the flagship Macy’s on 5th Avenue! Macy’s has an incredible selection of ornaments that includes boxed sets, Waterford ornaments, pet ornaments, Swarovski, and Christopher Radko!
And we of course had to take the time to grab a pic together. Because CHRISTMAS PAJAMAS.
And then night fell, and everything was immediately sparkly and cozy.
Carter has always loved Christmas decorations, and so I always look forward to spending this time with him. When he was 2 and 3, he cried his eyes out when we had to take the tree down in January. No more tears when we have to take it down, but his eyes sure do sparkle when we get to put it all up.
That’s it for today, y’all!