Sharing the Christmas Cheer

Time is short on this Friday before Christmas, but there’s always time for sharing the Christmas cheer.

vintage-style-gift-bagsChristmas on sale emails get my attention at this time of year.

I sourced, shopped, and scored these Simplicity vintage gift bags at Joann Fabrics and Crafts, and they are so super vintage style cute.

Christmas-potpourri

Apples, lemons, cinnamon sticks, whole coves, and bay leaves brought to boil and set to simmer fills the house with the scents of Christmas.

poinsettiaBrothers bearing gifts of poinsettia in winter white and Christmas red kick off the week before Christmas gift exchange.

porcelain-Christmas-tree

This year’s Christmas decorating is less extravagance and more emphasis on special touches rooted in memories, provenance, and simple I love that beauty.

angel-wings

oranges-cloves

Oranges and cloves remind me of my great grandmother’s house at the holidays.

cloves-oranges-cedarHer uncomplicated approach to Christmas decorating translated into a unique style all her own and adorned in understated grace.

bottle-brush-Christmas-trees

I conducted a Christmas tasting trial run while the kids were home.

Hands down, this cranberry fig cheese ball took top honors in the holiday appetizer category.

cheese ball

Cranberry Fig Cheese Ball

Ingredients

8 ounce block cream cheese softened

8 ounces shredded mild cheddar cheese

2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

½ cup dried cranberries

1/3 cup fig preserves

1 Tablespoon fresh parsley, finely chopped

1 Tablespoon Creole seasoning, optional

½ cup chopped walnuts

Directions

In a mixing bowl, whip the cream cheese to soften.  Add shredded mild cheddar cheese, dried cranberries, Worcestershire sauce, fig preserves and chopped parsley.  Mix all ingredients together to blend.

cheese-ball-ingredients

Form cheese mixture into a ball, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 4 hours or even better, overnight allowing cheese ball to firm up.

cheese-ball-form

Once firm, unwrap cheese ball from plastic wrap.  Roll the cheese ball in Creole seasoning and chopped walnuts to cover.  Serve with snack crackers of choice.

Santa-figurine-on-table

Sharing the Christmas cheer is the best part of the holiday season.

I’m spending this weekend in the Places In The Home test kitchen churning out cakes and cookies for family, friends, and neighbors.

After all, it is the most wonderful and tasty time of the year, the present is in the process, and the gift is in the giving.

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend and love from me to you at this holiday season.

Merry Christmas!

love your style

 

 

 

At The Holiday Last Minute Christmas Gift Ideas

Santa’s elves are working diligently to give last minute Christmas gift ideas inspiration to those of us who invariably feel the need to pick up one or two more little things for that special someone on our Christmas gift giving list.

glitter wristlet

Zip-Top Wristlet For Women

All that glitters is a winter glam gift idea.

This super on-trend glitter wristlet from Old Navy is a great gift option for the holiday of it all as well as winter fetes and Mardi Gras gatherings.

I know this firsthand from the “I love it” reaction our daughter-in-law had when she found one in her stocking when they visited last week.

last minute Christmas gift ideas

Target order pickup is a life saver during these hectic holiday times, especially when the son and daughter-in-law volunteer to go on a Target run.

Earthenware Stocking Mug Pink - OpalhouseEarthenware Stocking Mug Pink – Opalhouse

As I flipped through the pages of last week’s weekly ad, this stocking mug caught my eye.

It’s got pencil, pen, and whatnot holder for my desk written all over it.

Clydesdale painting print

Art is the gift you can’t go wrong with.

Horse pink canvas print clydesdaleClydesdale Painting Canvas Print

JOSH YÖUNG DESIGN HOUSE

Josh Young – Domino

James Dean canvas print

James Dean Print by Phil Stern

An encore from Josh Young Design House.

Emma in blush framed

Emma in blushEmma in Blush

Andy Warhol Soup Can Die Cut Notecards Set Of 12Andy Warhol Soup Can Die Cut Notecards Set Of 12

Rae Dunn pen setRae Dunn Pen Set

Old And Wise Cane Pens Set Of 2Old And Wise Cane Pens Set Of 2

Leopard love this haircalf tray with leopard print from TJ Marshall’s (what I call it when the item can be found at both outlets).

Haircalf Tray With Leopard PrintHaircalf Tray With Leopard Print

marble cutting board with brass

Jay Import Marble Cutting Board With Brass

There’s nothing cheesy about spending the night in with delicious bites served in style with a side of all things cheesy trivia.

the big cheesy night in

Big Cheesy Night In Game

greens-ryobi-handheld-flashlights

Dave the Builder’s idea of Christmas lights.

18-Volt ONE+ Lithium-Ion Cordless LED Light

18-Volt ONE+ Lithium-Ion Cordless LED Light

Cookbooks, spices, sauces, and grilling kits are my last minute Christmas gift ideas go-to for the host, hostess, him, and/or her.

The Southerner's Cookbook: Recipes, Wisdom, and StoriesThe Southerner’s Cookbook: Recipes, Wisdom, and Stories

last minute Christmas gift ideas

Jim Beam Grilling Essentials

Color, texture, and pattern for the holidays.

JBL Clip 3 Portable Bluetooth Speaker with Carabiner - CamoJBL Clip 3 Portable Bluetooth Speaker with Carabiner – Camo

 

2 Pack TAL 20 Ounce Modern Bottles Pink and Leopard2 Pack TAL 20 Ounce Modern Bottles Pink and Leopard

We’ve already had our big Christmas when the Canadian snowbirds were home, so I’m hitting the reset button for the second round of celebrating the most wonderful time of the year.

With all there is to do in these last few days before the big day, last minute Christmas gift ideas come in holiday handy.

I don’t want to rush, forget, or overlook the season and all its fabulous traditions, which can be easy to do if you don’t take a moment or two to take it all in.

Classic, old, and vintage Christmas songs on YouTube are keeping me company as I source and sip Christmas cider (apple cider or juice and red hots warmed on the stove until the red hots melt).

Now for a blast from Christmas past.

I found this Kmart in-store Christmas music from 1974 video on YouTube and to say it brings back holiday shopping to merry Muzak memories is an understatement.

Happy holiday shopping.

love your style

 

 

 

 

Festive Finery For Christmas Fetching Friday

Today’s festive finery for Christmas fetching Friday comes to you in the spirit of it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas.

fetching-definiton

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Christmas is the time of year for decking the halls in elegant, traditional, vintage, casual, and the like finery.

hg-ven-house

House & Garden

tassel wreath

One Kings Lane

Christmas fetching Friday

Better Homes & Gardens

mirror above benchThe Glam Pad

hg_puseyhouse

House & Garden

Absolutely vintage style fabulous.

farmhouse-holiday-entry

Country Living

wreath-in-window

Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles

Designer Darryl CarterDesigner Darryl Carter

flocked-Christmas-tree

Veranda Magazine

 JOSH YÖUNG DESIGN HOUSE

Josh Young Design House – Domino

It’s the most wonderful and beautiful time of the year.

I hope you have the opportunity to witness firsthand the beauty and magic of the season’s festive finery on this twelve days until Christmas fetching Friday.

love your style

 

Home For The Holidays Christmas Decorating Ideas

Ho Ho Home for the holidays Christmas decorating ideas are all around. Inspiration reigns supreme at anytime of year, but it’s especially motivating and visually captivating at Christmastime.

Gardner Architects LLC

Gardner Architects LLC

Genius and gorgeous Christmas decorating ideas are well worth repeating and reproducing.

Christmas crafts citrus

Country Living Magazine

Uttermost Samuelle Wooden End Table

Uttermost Samuelle Wooden End Table

burlap base faux Christmas tree

Holiday Time Green Fir Tree with Burlap Base Christmas Decoration

Hammered copper continues to catch my eye as a classic color, texture, and pattern decor choice.

Hammered Copper Party TubHammered Copper Party Tub

Marketed as a party tub in its original retail form, I see the Hammered Copper Party Tub from World Market as a classic container extraordinaire for housing a tabletop Christmas tree, fresh greenery, or rosemary tree.

DIY Dried Citrus Garlands

DIY Dried Citrus Garlands

A string of Christmas charm awaits in a fragrant DIY dried citrus garland like this one from Honestly WTF.

dried-orange-slices-bay-leaves

Olive Green: 2-ply Waxed Polyester Cord, ~ 1mm, pack of 25 feetOlive Green: 2-ply Waxed Polyester Cord, ~ 1mm, pack of 25 feet

cinnamon_large

decorative tassels beige

Hobby Lobby

Dried oranges, bay leaves, cinnamon sticks, and decorative tassels strung together in a repeating pattern produce a simple yet elegant Christmas through winter decoration for a tabletop, mantel, banister, and Christmas tree.

tassels-on-door-knobHouse Beautiful

Small touches take the ordinary to holiday extraordinary.

Entertaining goes with the holiday season, and this recipe for white Christmas punch and ice ring mold is Christmas decorating ideas easy and elegant.

holiday_hosting_bar

Ballard Designs

Buff Concrete Planters

Buff Concrete Planters

Well-done home for the holidays decorating ideas do not have to be costly to be remarkable.

Balsam Mixed Greens Fresh Wreath

Balsam Mixed Greens Fresh Wreath

pears-Thanksgiving

Pears paired with fresh greenery and placed in a decorative urn housing bottles of your favorite holiday beverage on ice becomes a festive beverage  holder focal point.

Christmas decorating ideasHouse & Garden

early-20th-century-antique-french-carved-cane-seat-side-chairs-a-pair-4369

Early 20th Century Antique French Carved Cane Seat Side Chairs- a Pair

Christmas decorating ideas often entail a project, and this wonderful pair of early 20th century antique French carved cane seat side chairs are sitting pretty ready to be purchased, primed, and painted in Modern Masters pale gold metallic interior paint.

Wait a minute.

Aren’t you the one who preaches against painting antique furniture?

On the whole I am, however, in certain decorating situations and with certain pieces, a coat or two of matte metallic in a designer color is pure paint project perfection.

Pale Gold Water-Based Matte Metallic Interior Paint

Modern Masters Pale Gold Water-Based Matte Metallic Interior Paint

Neutral-toned antiques and quality antique reproductions layers a space in  softness.

snowy white Christmas French armoire1

Midwest Living

Ethan Allen Legacy Huge French Armoire

Ethan Allen Legacy Huge French Armoire

Vicknair Distressed Rocking Horse Wood FigurineVicknair Distressed Rocking Horse Wood Figurine

Hanging a wreath(s) or greenery bunches from the top of a door (armoire, cabinet, exterior) with ribbon adds a custom touch to your holiday decorating presentation.

cedar-berries-oranges-feathers

The wider the ribbon the better, so I like to use a ribbon that is at least 2½” wide.

wide red velvet ribbon

Determine the placement of where you want the wreath to hang on the door.  Measure the distance from the top of the wreath to the the top of the door.

Double that measurement and add three inches to it.  This is the length in inches to cut the ribbon.

Loop the ribbon under the wreath’s center, bring up the ends to meet, and position over the flat top of the door.

top of front door

Press a flat head thumbtack into the center of the ribbon to secure.

Festive kitchen

House & Home

Antique French Hanging Plate Rack, circa 1700s

Antique French Hanging Plate Rack, circa 1700s

printed table runner

Printed Table Runner

Christmas decorating ideas

large pine cones

Pinecone Ceramic Salad Plate Set of 4Pinecone Ceramic Salad Plate Set of 4

vintage-bulb-christmas-craft-centerpiece

Country Living

DIY retro bulb centerpiece is popping with color and memories of Christmas past.

You’ll need a small round Styrofoam ball and a strand of vintage or vintage style big bulb Christmas lights.

To make the centerpiece cut off the bottom of the Styrofoam ball so it will sit properly.

Philips 50ct Christmas LED C3 String Lights MulticoloredPhilips 50ct Christmas LED C3 String Lights Multicolored

Use a hot glue gun to attach the Christmas lights to the top and sides of the ball.

Be very careful handling the hot glue gun and the glass bulbs.

Ornaments on High

Better Homes & Gardens

A box of Shiny Brite ornaments keep with the appeal of vintage at the holidays.

Adorning a chandelier with vintage or in the style of vintage ornaments is a home for the holidays Christmas decorating ideas classic that is  delightfully elegant in presence and simple to achieve.

Shiny Brite Signature Flocked Vintage CelebrationShiny Brite Signature Flocked Vintage Celebration

Ho Ho Home for the holidays Christmas decorating ideas for decking the halls in Christmas decor and finery time is here.

For those of you beginning to deck, do show and tell with us.

For those of you whose halls are decked and ready to impress, let the decorating continue.

You can never have too much Christmas!

love your style

 

 

With Only Five Days Until Christmas

With only five days until Christmas, it’s beginning to look, taste, sound and feel a lot like Christmas.

Five Days Until Christmas

In the spirit and the groove of the season, visions of holiday food, fun and festivities dance in our heads to the tunes of classic, traditional, rock, jazz, country and instrumental Christmas music.

A moratorium on talk radio and smooth jazz is in place in favor of my ‘Tis the Season For Christmas Tunes playlist on Spotify.   The sounds of the season window is short at best, so we go all in December 1st through New Year’s Day.

Sitting-Santa

Ho Ho Holly Jolly Santa sits holds court in the Places In The Home candy kitchen.  I wasn’t sure this particular holiday vignette would translate, but translate it does.

vintage-Santa-mug-lights

A wisp of whimsical paired with a spot of vintage in the spirit of bygone days fits perfectly into our Christmas motif.

rosemary-tree

Fresh, fragrant and fa la la la lovely – Christmas smells so good!  A tradition of sorts dating back to the days of Hopefully Classic, Dave the Builder picks up a fresh rosemary tree shaped in the form of a mini Christmas tree on his Black Friday run.  Fresh orange slices, ground cloves and bay leaves brought to a boil and left to a simmer- divine!

boiling-oranges

With only five days until Christmas, things are heating up in the Places In The Home kitchen.

Candies and cookies, and dishes, oh my waistline.

We’ll  count calories in January, but for now we’ll feast upon traditional and regional holiday dishes in traditional tastes and colors of the season.

rice-dressing

No respectable Southern cookie, candy and cake plate is without Kentucky bourbon balls, the quintessential southern Christmas goodie.

bourbon-balls

reeses-peanut-butter-cup-dishReese’s Peanut Butter Cups commandeered from Dave the Builders candy dish make a delicious addition to a cake mix sugar cookie.

Reese's-sugar-cookie

dining-roomTry, try as I may to deviate from a pastel palette of pink, French blue and winter white, the lifelong preference invariably wins out over traditional and new-traditional colors.

ornaments-on-tree

Christmas-tree-2017

Walmart surprised and delighted the decorating and the savvy consumer side of my brain this holiday season.

Christmas-plates

I could not be more pleased with the presence and the price point of the tabletop pre-lit silver artificial tinsel Christmas tree and the Better Homes and Gardens holiday plate set.

Christmas-dessert-plates

We had a little “this never, ever happens here” excitement this week.

snow-showers-prediction

For a split second the Christmas Day forecast for Central Louisiana looked like we would need to break out the snow boots and snow booties.

snow-booties

Snow in Louisiana on Christmas Day?

Could it be that a miracle of snow on Places In The Home Street will take place?

Although it will not come to pass, the prospect of it could happen only adds to the excitement of a White Christmas.

Christmas-figurines

I realize a gold picture frame with black and white zebras and a black and white photo of our son and his groomsmen does not necessarily qualify as a Christmas or holiday decoration, but leave it to me to find a way to incorporate it into an I’ll be home for Christmas theme.  The Canadian snowbirds will not be home in Canada or Louisiana for Christmas, and for an excellent reason.  The snowbirds are flying south as in the tropical south  for a holiday honeymoon.

groom-groomsmen

With only five days until Christmas I suppose I should push back from the keyboard if for only a day or three to enjoy all the season has to offer.  May your holidays be merry and bright, safe and sound, healthy and happy and your heart always be Home for the Holidays.

love your style

 

 

 

 

 

Treasures On The Tree: Christmas Ornaments

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas. Let’s take a look at the history of Christmas ornaments, shall we?

History shows the decorations used to trim and bedeck Christmas trees included white candy canes, fresh apples and pastries shaped in the likeness of flowers, hearts and stars.

Garlands of glass beads, tin figures and the famous glass bauble made in Lauscha, Germany by Hans Greiner captured the eyes and the hearts of admirers.  Artisans crafted the original ornaments in the shape of fruits and nuts.

peach-german-ornament

William DeMuth created the first American-made glass ornaments in 1870.  American businessman F. W. Woolworth discovered glass bauble ornaments on his travels to Laucscha, Germany in the 1880s subsequently importing the Lauscha ornaments to the United States.

Germany-glass-ornament32° North

The F. W. Woolworth Company went national in 1910 with 1000+ stores introducing glass Christmas ornaments into its inventory.

Over the 20th century, Woolworth’s would import 200,000 Christmas ornaments and top $25 million in sales from Christmas decorations.

christmas ornaments

Over the last decade, decorating the Christmas tree has become more than strictly a holiday ritual and more of a trip down memory lane starring Christmas ornaments notably in what Christmas means to me magnificence.

decorated-tinsel-tree

Small in size, but oh-so-large in representation of our individual style, personal interests, defining milestones, landmark events, choice destinations, memories of yesteryear;  Christmas ornaments become delicate, shiny, glittery and wonderful winter wonderland pieces to add to or start a these are a few of my favorite things collection.

Snow-Great-Smoky-Mountains-National-ParkGreat Smoky Mountains National Park  ~  Photo by Nick Yarnell

East Tennessee is our second home, and even though we will spend Christmas at home in Louisiana, the GSMNP ornament will allow us to be home for Christmas if only in our Great Smoky Mountains National Park dreams.

ornament-smoky-mountains

Great Smoky Mountains National Park

ski-winter

Load ’em up and let’s hit the slopes memories.

ornament_ski_gondolaSki Gondola 

Winnipeg- JetsWinnipeg Jets

The newlywed Canadian snowbirds eat, sleep and drink all things hockey, namely, the Winnipeg Jets.

Jets-games

This one’s for y’all or celui-ci est pour vous tous.

ornament-hockey-puck

Instead of the traditional our first Christmas ornament denoting the happy couple’s first Christmas together as man and wife, I thought I’d go in a different direction.

pizza-food-truck

The food truck was a huge hit at their wedding reception, and a food truck ornament serves as an appropriate token of their make it our own style.

ornament-food-truck

Christmas ornaments somehow become more than objects of beauty, they become ornamental objects of ourselves and treasures from our lives and the lives of those we love.

Houmas HouseHoumas House

Now for an array of Christmas ornaments celebrating the food, music, landmarks and culture of Louisiana  and ones that capture the essence of the there’s no place like home for the holidays sentiment.

ornament-landscape

Dagmara Landscape Printed Glass Ball Ornament

I fell in love with the Dagmara landscape printed glass ball ornament at first sight.  Monochrome topography fittingly depicts a scene reminiscent of the homes, buildings and churches along the parish roads and bayous of Louisiana.

Flying_pelican_grand_bayBrown Pelicans

cloisonne-Louisiana-state-ornament

Kitty Keller Designs Cloisonne State of Louisiana 

The announcement of Ultra Violet as Pantone Color of the Year for 2018 coordinates with the holiday color fest.

2018-Pantone-Ultra-Violet

A splash of non-traditional color livens the look, and complements the colors featured in the all I want for Christmas Limoges oyster plate and oyster ornament.

Limoges-oyster-plate

Hand Painted Limoges Plate With Sea Oyster Shell Decoration

ornament-oyster

Old World Christmas Oyster with Pearl Glass Blown Ornament

Beignets_and_Café_au_Lait_at_Café_du_Monde,_New_OrleansBeignets and Café au Lait at Café du Monde

Beignets and Café au Lait at Café du Monde is a delicious New Orleans tradition.

ornament-coffee-beignets-cafe-du-monde

Coffee and Beignets New Orleans Christmas Ornament 

Our pets are members of our family.

Sadie the black Labrador Retriever and Beau the white German shepherd keep our nephews company on the hunt.

Sadie-black-lab

pet-ornaments

German Shepherd

white-German-shepherd

Creativity and color make up a large part of my day, every day.

french-artisit-oil-paint-palette

French Artist Oil Paint Palette

It’s a color your world Christmas.

ornament-artist-paletteOld World Christmas Artist’s Palette Glass Blown Ornament

The piney woods are well-represented through adorned packages in shades of blush, gray, and gold wrapped to impress.

pink-holiday-gift-wrapping-ideas

Decorate your Christmas tree as you would your home- with a sense of you.

Love your style!

Places In The Home: In The Spirit of The Twelve Days of Christmas

In the spirit of The Twelve Days of Christmas, true Christmas traditions and because twelve is the exact number of photos that turned out to be share worthy, I present to you the Places In The Home Twelve Days of Christmas.

On the first day of Christmas my idea of true Christmas traditions sent to me

vintage inspired aluminum Christmas wreaths and shiny and bright ornaments kinda sorta just like the aluminum Christmas tree, color wheel and Shiny Brite ornaments my maternal grandmother had.  It’s all in the accents and accessories details.

shiny-and-bright-ornaments

On the second day of Christmas my idea of true Christmas traditions sent to me

the patience prayed for and the grace granted to find the beauty in everything and everyone.

twelve days of Christmas

On the third day of Christmas my idea of true Christmas traditions sent to me

an old world Santa figurine ornament in shades of yellow, cream, brown and glitter gold that cost next to nothing, and one I would not take a million dollars for.  Well.

old-world-santa-figurine-1

On the fourth day of Christmas my idea of true Christmas traditions sent to me

a Christmas centerpiece rich in throwback tradition and vibrant colors compliments of nature’s beauty and the neighbor’s grown with love grove.

fruit-arrangement

On the fifth day of Christmas my idea of true Christmas traditions sent to me

the aromatic trio of one orange, one bay leaf and a generous sprinkling of ground cloves soon set to simmer and scent.

boiling-oranges

On the sixth day of Christmas my idea of true Christmas traditions sent to me

a craving for a family must make and bake at the holidays family tradition, Mama Two sugar cookies.  The story of how her name came to be is almost as iconic as her family famous Christmas cookie recipe.

sugar-cookies-dough

The name I assigned to my great-grandmother was born out of a childlike understanding.  Our holiday destination point was set for the great state of Texas to spread holiday cheer and to introduce my great-grandparents to the newest addition to the family (me).  My mother and grandmother took advantage of the over the bayous and through the piney woods, to great-grandmother’s house we go travel time to coach me into calling my great-grandmother “mama”- the term of endearment she had always gone by.

me

The story goes my mother tried her best at introductions and association in terms she assumed best suited for a toddlers scope of understanding.

This is mama (pointing to herself).

This is mamaw (pointing to her mother).

And this is mama, too (pointing to her grandmother, my great-grandmother).

Okay, I’ve got it.

This is mama.

This is mamaw.

And that is mama two.

There’s only one mama, silly.

Alas, the intended became the literal, and a lovely Christmas story to boot.

butter-sugar-fudge

On the seventh, eighth and ninth day of Christmas my idea of true Christmas traditions sent to me

melted butter, sugar and spice

coco-coconut-cake

fresh coconut, fresh apples and fresh Louisiana pecans.

apple-pecan-walnut-cake1

On the tenth day of Christmas my idea of true Christmas traditions sent to me

the sending to and receiving from neighbors, friends and family Christmas cards of season’s greetings.

christmas-cards

On the eleventh day of Christmas my idea of true Christmas traditions sent to me

twelve days of Christmas color, texture and pattern.

color-texture-pattern

On the twelfth day of Christmas my idea of true Christmas traditions sent to me

friends who are the jewels of life.

gold-tassel

Merry Christmas, friends!

Love your style!