Need A Fun Holiday Tradition? You’ll Love This Game!

Need A Fun Holiday Tradition? You’ll Love This Game!

Need A Fun Holiday Tradition? You’ll Love This Game!

December 26, 2016

    Need A Fun Holiday Tradition? You’ll Love This Game!  Last year, I found a post for ‘The Christmas Game’ on Pinterest.   My family enjoyed it so much and the grandkids have been asking if we were playing it again this year.

    “The Christmas Game”, which I came across inspired our version of this game. A few changes were made to the original.    You can read last year’s post and copy some of the tags made for last year here ►Christmas Game.

    The gifts for this game are displayed on the coffee table in the family room, keeping them separate from the other Christmas gifts.

    The idea is to collect inexpensive presents for everyone who will be at the Christmas party and wrap them.  Most of the gifts I purchased were $10.00 or under.  Cash or gift cards can be hidden in some of the gifts.  One of the gifts will have a more significant amount of cash to make it interesting.   I am only wrapping one gift for each person again this year.


   We are having eighteen people here so eighteen numbers were printed on a piece of paper, cut out, folded, and ready to be drawn from a wooden sleigh.  Number one goes first and chooses a gift and opens it.  Number two goes next.  That person can pick another gift from the pile or steal an opened one from someone else.  The person with the stolen gift can either choose another gift from the pile or steal from someone else.  

    The game resumes and the next number is in play.  Although the blogger who inspired this new tradition gave three steals before being dead, we decided a  gift can only be stolen two times before it is dead and can’t be stolen again.  (Most of us have probably played a similar game with co-workers, but everyone brought a gift.)

    I thought this was a great idea, but I took it a little farther and chose some cheesy sayings, which were also inspired by some pins on Pinterest, to accompany the gifts.  I am sure some of the puns will get some laughs and perhaps some will receive winces but it will be so much fun.

    Deciding to make the ‘rein-beer’ gift, which we have all seen on Pinterest, I went in pursuit of some root beer.   The store where I was shopping only had A&W in plastic bottles, some larger and these I chose, which are 12-ounces.  

   My plan was to place them in a metal bucket.  I had been watching for a bucket on all of my recent shopping expeditions but couldn’t seem to find one.  Having seen them there before and making a mental note that they were very affordable, I knew that Lowe’s had a variety of sizes of metal buckets.

     Unfortunately, lots of people must have had a similar idea.  There seemed to have been a run on buckets!  This little bucket for three dollars was the last of this size.  One size up was completely gone.

     With Tacky Glue, sparkly red pom poms, googly eyes, brown pipe cleaners, the bucket, and some red and green basket filler, the ‘rein-beer’ were created. 

   Last year, some gift cards and some cash were hidden in some of the gifts.  Alex seemed very happy with her mints and then she found the ’20’ dollar bill hidden in the cardboard sleeve!  

    This year, I chose to forgo the gift cards and simply use cash.  Dave stopped by the bank and picked up a hundred dollar pack of singles for me to tuck into some of the gifts.

     As I was putting this bucket together, the notion of dollar bills being referred to as ‘bucks’ came to mind.  The idea for a  ‘bucket of bucks’ was born.  So, I decided to roll a few up and tuck them around the bottles.  The ‘Bucket of Bucks!’ label was designed on Pic Monkey, printed out on card stock and attached to the bucket with clear packing tape on both edges.

    The original gift tag I had planned was placed in the middle of the root beers on top of some of the rolled dollar bills.  The finished bucket was placed on a few sheets of tissue paper, which were offset and pulled up around the entire bucket, and then placed inside a holiday bag.  Isn’t this cute?  I have to say, this was my favorite gifts this year!

    So, this year I found this gift box with Hershey cups and the ingredients for S’mores!  The sentiment for this tag was changed a little to be appropriate for Christmas.  That is the great thing about this game.  You can change the wording a little to fit the gifts you find and make it your own.

    Although there are many different ways you could package ‘candy kisses’, I liked this package, which also has a cup with a lid.  How cute is that?

    Everyone seems to like these soft throws.  This one looked so rich and soft and the neutral color would go with any decor.  The price was so affordable, it seemed a perfect pick.

   The small stuffed toy in this cup is a reindeer!  How cute is this?  And there is chocolate in it, too.  Notice the clever, or not so clever, play on words here!  Yep, I made that one up on my own!  Wince…  It did seem appropriate.


  This gift had a bar of great smelling holiday berry soap, a loofah, and a sleeping mask.

   The tags for this year can be copied for your personal use here ► 2016 Tags.

   Hope these give you inspiration for some great gift ideas!  Seriously, do you think you Need A Fun Holiday Tradition?  You’ll Love This Game!



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Create An Easy Apothecary Jar Snow Scene Complete With Lights

Create An Easy Apothecary Jar Snow Scene Complete With Lights

Create An Easy Apothecary Jar Snow Scene Complete With Lights

December 15, 2016

   Create An Easy Apothecary Jar Snow Scene Complete With Lights.  Simple and elegant, anyone can make one of these.  Granted, you may have to fiddle with things a little, but you can create a nice little vignette to add to your holiday decor.

    This glass apothecary jar was bought from the craft store.  It was the largest I could find.   Ever frugal, I used a 50% off coupon for it.  Even though it was the largest, I did have some problems finding the item to fit into it!

    At first, the idea of a snowman scene included in those little ceramic Christmas village pieces you can buy at the craft stores was part of my plan.  Yeah, it was too big for the part of the jar that is recessed.  Although the bowl part was plenty big, it had to go through that smaller part of the neck! 

   The thought of making my own little cardboard house came to mind, but I found this little church ornament and it also lights!  

    The front door has the ‘Snowman Wreath‘ I made a few weeks, ago.  The Christmas tree on the catwalk has white lights.  The pine bough across the banister rail is decorated with a heavy coat of faux snow.  Snowflakes, suspended in air with fishing line, create an arch to walk through into the family room.  Do you see a snow theme going here?

     The apothecary jar snow scene seemed to be the perfect addition to this area.  The little church ornament is white with snow, glitter, and gold accents.   

    To begin with, I bought the little ornament, the faux snow, and lights with a battery pack.  (Batteries are not supplied with it.)  This particular light set was a little more expensive than the one for the lantern with the deer.  The great thing about it is that it has an on, off, and a 6-hour self-timer switch.  You flip the switch at the precise time you want it to come on each day and it will stay lit for 6-hours automatically.  Each day, it will turn on at that time and turn off 6-hours later.  It works like a dream.

    So, my plan was to place the battery pack in a glass, wrap the string of lights around it and place in the apothecary jar.  Thinking that the battery pack could be encased in two glasses, one upside down and fitted inside the other, I searched through the cabinets and came up with these two glasses.  Perfect, right?

    Although it fit perfectly inside the two glasses and would have cut down on the snow needed, when I put the little church on top, it was too tall.   The church went up inside the neck too far.  Guess a smaller church ornament would have worked better.

   So, I tried one glass upside down.  Nope.  That didn’t work either.  Although this might work for you, the glass just was not working for me.   Not one to give up, I brainstormed.   I thought it just needed something clear to sit atop.

    A small glass from a picture frame came to mind.  The glass was taped to both ends of the battery pack and it was placed upside down in the jar.  The church was set atop and the whole thing slid sideways.


      The glass against the glass jar was too slippery.  So, I remembered I had some clear rubber bumper pads and positioned them on all four corners of the battery pack.   That worked.  The rubber pads caught on the glass and the battery pack stayed in place.  (I re-positioned the one on the left to hang just over the edge like the others.)

    The little church was placed on top of the glass taped to the battery pack and the faux snow was poured around the base of the ornament, covering the lights.

    Then, the lid was positioned on top of the jar and the jar was placed on a tray on the table in the foyer.  Some greenery was circled around the jar and a few pine cones were also strategically placed on the greenery.  To finish it off, a bow of a sparkly white and silver ribbon was made and placed in the front and to the side of the jar.

    It’s funny that so little went into this jar with the little snow scene.  It does make a stunning impact during the day but especially as the sun sets.

   Maybe this will inspire you to Create An Easy Apothecary Jar Snow Scene Complete With Lights!


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Love This Dazzling Christmas Decor? It’s Insanely Easy!

Love This Dazzling Christmas Decor?  It’s Insanely Easy!

Love This Dazzling Christmas Decor?  It’s Insanely Easy!

December 11, 2016

     Don’t you Love This Dazzling Christmas Decor?  It’s Insanely Easy!  If you recall, this lantern was purchased to display the DIY Moss Covered Bunny in 2015.  My plan was to display a snowman in it this year.  Well, you know how it is, due to circumstances, sometimes plans change.

    Time has definitely been pressed this year.  Helping with Memphis, Aidan, and Sophia, some medical issues in the family, and numerous birthdays here in December have all eaten away at the time.  Family comes first, you know.

    Time for shopping has been almost non-existent.  The perfect snowman was not found.  So, the boxes of Christmas decorations were packed upstairs from the basement, opened, and while unpacking the collection of Santa’s, an idea struck me.

    The smaller Santa’s are usually displayed on the sideboard each year.  You know, if you have a collection of items and they are scattered all over a room, or the house, they can be barely noticed or missed altogether.  If gathered together and displayed as a group, they take on more importance.  (This picture is from a couple of years ago.)

    Well, as I unpacked the Santa’s, I placed two of the larger ones on the fireplace mantel, cocked my head sideways, and considered them.  Then, the white trees bought last year were situated between them.  The golden wire trees were also used on the ends and ultimately, a sparkly gold deer was centered on the mantel below the clock.  (The deer had been purchased to display in the lantern, but it ended up being a little too tall.)

    The mantel display looked nice, but it needed some more weight.  Since the Christmas tree ended up being predominately red and gold, the color red seemed to be needed.  And yes, it just so happened we have a sparkly red poinsettia length of garland.

    The poinsettia garland was attached to the mantel using a couple of those ‘Command Strips’ placed on the top of the mantel and some floral wire.  Instead of laying it straight along the edge of the mantel, an arch was formed mimicking the arch of the trim.  A red velvet bow was attached to each end with floral wire.

    A string of white lights is scattered behind the vignette.  When they are turned on the magic happens.



    Back to the lantern, a pin on Pinterest gave me the idea to add lights to it.  These little lights are available at craft stores.  These were purchased at Michael’s and they were half-price at the time.  This wooden lantern has four holes in the top, which is not removable. 

           With the leftover piece of ribbon from the Christmas tree, a bow was made.  Green plastic wrapped wire was used to secure the loops and some greenery and a pine cone were also attached with floral wire.

 Christmas Decor - Don't You Love It? It's Insanely Easy! on

    These lights have a battery pack, which takes 3 – AA batteries.  This set has to be turned on and off with a switch.  The holes in the top came in handy.  The lights were snaked down through the holes and the battery pack sits behind the bow on top of the lantern, out of sight.   

*The light set purchased for the apothecary jar displayed in the foyer has a timer, which can be set for 6 hours.  It was also purchased at the craft store.

   Using clear packing tape, the string of lights was secured to the top of the inside of the lantern in two places.  

    Faux snow was sprinkled on the floor of the lantern and then the golden deer, which matches the wired Christmas trees on the mantel, was set inside.  How insanely easy is that?  The battery pack for the string of lights was switched on.  Doesn’t It really look quite stunning in its simplicity?

    Given more time for shopping, some of this Christmas decor would have taken on a completely different look.   Sometimes, maybe having less time can be a good thing!

    Love This Dazzling Christmas Decor?  Maybe it will inspire you!  It’s Insanely Easy!



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How To Make Your Christmas Tree Even More Beautiful!

How To Make Your Christmas Tree Even More Beautiful!

December 7, 2016

    Are you wondering How To Make Your Christmas Tree, Even More, Beautiful?

Awhile back when Sophia and I were shopping, we saw Christmas trees at Macy’s. I noticed one of the trees had a ribbon treatment, which I had never seen before. Multiple pieces of ribbon were layered together and they were festooned on the Christmas tree.  The end result looked rich and gorgeous!


    When I finally got the chance to go shopping, I found this beautiful swirled gold pattern on this red ribbon at Sam’s.  The spool had 50 yards of wired ribbon and was only $6.95 a spool.  What a deal!  

   With the ribbon in mind, I ended up at Michael’s and their deal of the day was 70% off their Christmas picks!  Although the remaining decorations were pretty much picked over, I found the gold glittered picks, which seemed perfect to repeat the swirled pattern.  The glittery red poinsettias didn’t look like much all glommed and folded together.  After picking one up and manipulating the glittery leaves to look like a poinsettia, it really looked pretty.  Ten of each of these went into the shopping cart.

   After a little research, I found that these swirls of clustered ribbon were created by cutting lengths of ribbon and stapling them together.  In order for the ribbons to open up, each needed to be a little longer than the one cut before.   

   The first piece I made was cut about 36″ long.  Using that ribbon as a guide, I cut the next ribbon about 2″ longer, the next 2″ longer than the one before, and so on.  Four ribbons were cut in total.  (After making that one, I decided 1″ longer was preferable to me.  The rest of the ribbons were cut with a 1″ difference.)

    First one down, I ended up deciding to make the ribbons a little longer, about 42″ for the first, 43″ for the second, 44″ for the third, etc.  After all, the lower part of the tree is larger than the top.  Instead of using four ribbon pieces, five pieces of ribbon were cut and stapled together, lining up the cut ribbon at both ends.

    The first one I made, I overlapped the ends and covered up the cut ends.  Waste of time!  Not necessary and kind of a pain to do, too.  The ends are tucked into and hidden in the branches anyway.

   The first ribbon cluster was started at the top of the tree and wound and looped.  Then, the end was tucked back into the branches.

    The next ribbon cluster was started close to the first, tucked, looped, and artfully fashioned around the tree.   The ribbons can be separated slightly to show a little more of the other ribbon edges.  I went back and tweaked the ribbons, sliding the ribbons slightly to show more here and there.

    Doesn’t this look gorgeous?  Just think about a single ribbon being in the place of this.  It wouldn’t have near the impact, would it?

   Having draped ribbon on many of our trees before, this is definitely the most beautiful treatment.   Just so you know, almost the entire roll of 50 yards of ribbon was used for the ribbon clusters.

    Now, the ornaments will be added to the tree, but this ribbon treatment and the picks along with the lights is stunning!

   Are you wondering How To Make Your Christmas Tree, Even More, Beautiful?    Maybe this will inspire you!




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