My Christmas Mantel

After 6 years in my Town House I wanted to install a real fireplace but my HOA said there was no way I could knock down the outside wall to build the chimney.
So I took it upon myself to build my own faux.  You can see how I did it HERE
Since then it's been a joy to have a mantel to decorate every Holiday.  One thing that was not in the program for me was, "The Mr. insisted on his flat screen up there"  But I've made do and found ways to work around it.
The first thing that must be on the mantel throughout the year is a little ceramic rendition of my Mom sitting with all her grandchildren.  It was a gift from my Nephew after Mom passed away 16 years ago.  Each of her grand children's  names are hand painted on the sides,  and how I love it.

I collect Nutcrackers and they  are scattered for all to see, around the mantel and wall unit.

Each a gift from friends and family.

Since my kids have moved on to their own lives I've toned down my decorating a bit.  It's just not as elaborate as it once was. Now I think of putting it all back at the end of the season so over the past few years I've given my children some of my collectables  for their own homes.

My decorations are not romantic or elaborate and at this point in my life, it's just the way I like it but I will say, each item displayed has a meaning to me and my home feels like Christmas.

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The Better Late Than Never Christmas Inspirations Bloghop.
Barb from The Everyday Home
Laura from Top This Top That
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and for the letter "C" over at Jennys
Alphabet Thursday 


Holiday gifts and experimenting with knitting . . .

I bought some really nice colorful yarn with hopes of finding a design for a  scarf and gloves,  a Christmas gift.  It was  light weight and the colors are perfect for my grand daughter.  
It has purple!  Eve lives in Juneau and it is cold and snowy up there, so what better gifts than warm knits.  And, I'm so enjoying making her many different items.

I have such trouble reading knitting patteren's and gloves have not been my strong suite, so I bought a simple pair of gloves.. you know the ones you can find that look like a child's but stretch to fit any size.  These were all of a dollar in JoAnns.  I chose a blue color to contrast with the colors in the yarn. 

 Using my crochet hook I popped a hole for each stitch around the wrist and created a fringe of sorts to go with the scarf.  Once the scarf was finished I added the same loopy element down the lower edge.  Different?

As for the scarf, the way I knitted it created a wavy design.  It does not hang straight but has a swivel look and it's long, and can be wrapped around the neck several times.

There's me, modeling this set and I might add,  it looks rather nice.  Sometimes I wish I were able to wear such knits but as most of you know,  I'm in Florida.

At the moment I'm working on a Hat and fingerless glove set for her mom, my daughter-in-law. 

Don't you just love the colors and feel of today's yarns.  We have so much to choose from.
  "Another few Christmas Gifts will be on their merry way to Juneau"

What have you been working on?

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My Boys and their Christmas Jammie's

The Boys got their box yesterday and they just love their Christmas Jammie's.

I did a post a few weeks ago on how I made them, you can see this post  Here

I also made Mom and Dad a pair and amazing enough all fit, except little Alex's are a bit too long so mom did a quick hem.

The Perez Boys, how I love them all.

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My Holiday Decorations are almost finished...

Yesterday I went to Michaels after Thanksgiving Saturday sale and all the Christmas decorations were 60% off and I also had a 20% coupon for the entire purchase,  if I used it before noon.  Haha, I bought some really good items and for some reason it boosted my spirit.
Mr. N is the prez of our HOA and I told him, "We need to decorate the entrance signs" and we got to work.  Looks good  at both enterence's  of the complex.  
For the past several months I kept thinking of Christmas with a bit of sadness.  "No one will be here this year."  All the kids have made plans of their own when I'm so used to them coming to me.  Even my sister told me her winter visit will not start till after Christmas.  So I told myself "I'd not be decorating this year".  Well maybe just a wreath on the front window.
I went into the storage room and pulled out last years wreath and the poor thing was bent and looking  frumpy. 

With all the goodies I picked up at Michaels I got to work trying to revive the old wreath.
A new ribbon and a few sprigs of faux pine  did wonders.

I also think I'm not going to put lights around the eves of my house like in the past, so I put a string of 100 colorful lights on the wreath.  Looks good!

(yes those are  Hibiscus flowers you see there, "I live in Florida after all")

Well one thought and thing,  lead to another and I went in the storage room and pulled out the boxes of decorations.  Might as well make the house festive!
(My Daisy did not understand what all the stuff was in the kitchen hallway.)

Ok, now I'm going overboard. One peek into the box of Nutcrackers and I had to put a few on the bookcase.  There are so many more in the box but these few have meaning and are gifts from friends and family.

Ok, now for sure I've gone against what I said.  Cyndi gave me this really cute snowmen garland several years ago.  It had to be put out.

Boy this decorating thing sure did get out of hand.. but know what,  I'm feeling great and am into the festive mood now. 

"Egg Nog", I need to go get some Egg Nog for this evening.  I've even got a bottle of Spiced Rum.
It's going to be a good night.

Once it's dark outside this evening I'll get some photos of my Christmas lights on the window wreath.  (If I don't watch it I'll be on the ladder tomorrow putting up the icicles... ?)
The front porch so far, I had to put my little "Charley Brown" tree on the end table.  Might just go get a ceramic "Charley" to stand next to the tree. 

Think I need to put up the icicle lights? Maybe a few more poinseatia's and I'm ready.
"Let the Holidays begin"


Anyone else working hard on  their Christmas decorations on this after Thanksgiving weekend?



Have fun,  don't forget the Egg Nog!

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