24 Days of Christmas: Advent Week Three

I can’t believe week three of Advent is already upon us.

The third advent candle, also called the shepherds’ candle, represents joy. The candle represents the joy the world felt at the time of Christ’s birth.

As you light your advent candle, read Luke 2:7-15 (NIV)

and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

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“Glory to God in the highest heaven,

and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

This Christmas let’s remember the joy that only a personal relationship with Christ can bring.

May God bless you this week.

Linking to StonegableWorthing CourtCedar Hill FarmhouseConfessions of a Plate AddictTThe Turquoise HomeA Place of My TasteThe Happy Housie, The Blissful Bee, My PinterventuresThe Lady Prefers to SaveThe Kolb Corner, Craving Some Creativity,  Let’s Get Crafty, Diane and Dean DIY,  Starfish CottageBluesky Kitchen,  Potentially Chic,  McCall Manor, and Odds and Evans,  The Quintessential MommyChristine Everyday,  Little Miss DexterousDécor To AdorePoofing the PillowsAt Home With JemmaWhite Spray Paint,  and French Country Cottage!

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Staying Safe While Christmas Shopping

Most of us plan on completing our holiday shopping in the next week. If you’re like me, you live in an area in which holiday shopping requires travel time. You may also not have access to the stores where you want to shop. When we are shopping in brick and mortar stores, we think about our personal safety, and the safety of our families while holiday shopping, but do you think about the safety of your personal information when shopping online? Did you know that last year, FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center received nearly 300,000 online-theft complaints?

 

According to eMarketer,a research company that provides insights related to commerce and marketing in the digital world, online shopping is expected to boom during the 2017 holiday season. Taking special precautions while online shopping can protect your identity and credit card information from being stolen. At LifeLock, experts have shared the following tips for keeping your identity sage this holiday season. 

  1. Only shop from websites you trust. 

When you’re shopping at a brick and mortar store, you know for sure it really exists, but when you shop online, some websites could possibly just be a front. Some websites exist only for the purpose of stealing your credit card information. While it may look like a legit website, it may not be.

2.  Check out unfamiliar websites before you buy

 

If you happen to find the perfect gift on an unfamiliar website, do some investigating before you enter any personal information. Perhaps the best hint is whether or not there is a phone number and address for a real brick and mortar location. Check out their social media presence: does the company interact with their customers? Are there any reviews? What do they say?

3. Beware of prices that seem too good to be true 

Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales are common, but if a website offers prices that seem too good to be true, they probably are. It is wise to compare prices and pictures of similar items at different retailers. Unusually low prices could be a hint that a website may be a scam to get your information.

4. Don’t do your online shopping on public wi-fi 

You wouldn’t give out your social security number or your credit card information on a cordless phone, so don’t do it on a public wi-fi. With a little knowledge of the Internet, someone can easily intercept what you are viewing on the Internet, and also gain access to your credit card number.

5. Check out website security
If you see a small lock icon in the corner of your URL field, this tells you that the web page you’re on has privacy protection installed. The URL will start with “https.” If you don’t see a lock or “https,” then the website has no protection installed.

Refer to the following infographic from LifeLock to keep your identity safe during this holiday season.

 

Happy shopping!

 

Linking to StonegableWorthing CourtCedar Hill FarmhouseConfessions of a Plate AddictTThe Turquoise HomeA Place of My TasteThe Happy Housie, The Blissful Bee, My PinterventuresThe Lady Prefers to SaveThe Kolb Corner, Craving Some Creativity,  Let’s Get Crafty, Diane and Dean DIY,  Starfish CottageBluesky Kitchen,  Potentially Chic,  McCall Manor, and Odds and Evans,  The Quintessential MommyChristine Everyday,  Little Miss DexterousDécor To AdorePoofing the PillowsAt Home With JemmaWhite Spray Paint,  and French Country Cottage!

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24 Days of Christmas: A gift-wrapping round-up

For today’s installment of 24 Days of Christmas, I have decided to share a roundup of great looking Christmas gifts. This is an area where I really struggle. I am terrible at wrapping presents and even more terrible at making them look nice once they’re wrapped. My grandmother always wraps beautiful presents- I’m always jealous 🙂 I went to Pinterest looking for inspiration and what I found was too nice not to share with you guys.

One thing I really want to do differently this year is put a little more creativity into my Christmas gift wrapping. Usually, I just buy whatever wrapping paper looks the best with my tree and go from there. I have found some very cute ideas on Pinterest this year and I can’t wait to try them out 🙂

1. Four Corners Design: Not one, but FOUR really unique and interesting ideas for wrapping gifts. She actually even uses an old map and some old fabric for a bow!

2. Dishfunctional Designs: She has some great ideas, including using old sheet music, using photographs, floral sprigs and chalkboard paper. Lots of great ideas here!!
photos instead of gift tags / Disfunctional Design
This lady uses vintage buttons and boxwood to decorate her Christmas packages. Plus, her home looks like something out of a magazine.
RedandGreenGiftWrap thumb Gift Wrap Ideas: Buttons & Boxwood
So much inspiration here, but this polka dot package caught my eye.
I hope you have been as inspired by these pretty packages as I have. Now, on to do some Christmas wrapping!
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24 Days of Christmas: Christmas initial ornaments

My oldest daughter has this super cute Christmas ornament in her initial. It’s hanging on the top of her tree.

I searched for a cute ornament similar to this for my youngest daughter, but couldn’t find one in pink or purple that we loved.

I found these wooden letters at Walmart.

They were less than $2 and I bought the last “A” they had.

I quickly attached a string to the back for hanging, and covered the A in a layer of Modge Podge. I love that stuff!

Then, I covered it in a thick layer of purple glitter. I then let it dry for about 24 hours.

I could see covering these letters in scrapbook paper, or fabric as well. I could see chalk painting them. I could also see attaching them to a present instead of a tag.

But it also looks pretty cute as a tree topper, too.

Linking to StonegableWorthing CourtCedar Hill FarmhouseConfessions of a Plate AddictTThe Turquoise HomeA Place of My TasteThe Happy Housie, The Blissful Bee, My PinterventuresThe Lady Prefers to SaveThe Kolb Corner, Craving Some Creativity,  Let’s Get Crafty, Diane and Dean DIY,  Starfish CottageBluesky Kitchen,  Potentially Chic,  McCall Manor, and Odds and Evans,  The Quintessential MommyChristine Everyday,  Little Miss DexterousDécor To AdorePoofing the PillowsAt Home With JemmaWhite Spray Paint,  and French Country Cottage!

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24 Days of Christmas: Mason jar candle holder

I may be slightly obsessed with Mason jars. I have them in almost every room of the house. Not surprisingly, I like to use them in my seasonal decor.

I just brushed this one with some Modge Podge.

I then rolled the jar in Epsom Salt.

Then, I tied a bit of twine around the mouth and added this sweet floral pick to it.

It looks so sweet and so Christmas-y with the tea lights in it.

Have a blessed day!!

Linking to StonegableWorthing CourtCedar Hill FarmhouseConfessions of a Plate AddictTThe Turquoise HomeA Place of My TasteThe Happy Housie, The Blissful Bee, My PinterventuresThe Lady Prefers to SaveThe Kolb Corner, Craving Some Creativity,  Let’s Get Crafty, Diane and Dean DIY,  Starfish CottageBluesky Kitchen,  Potentially Chic,  McCall Manor, and Odds and Evans,  The Quintessential MommyChristine Everyday,  Little Miss DexterousDécor To AdorePoofing the PillowsAt Home With JemmaWhite Spray Paint,  and French Country Cottage!

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24 Days of Christmas: Snowman Christmas Ornaments

 

My daughter and I had some extra ornaments lying around after making the waterless snowglobe ornaments last week. We wracked our brains for something fun to do, and we finally came up with these snowmen ornaments.

First, take your clear plastic ornament and dribble white paint inside it. Roll it around until the inside of the ball is completely covered.

Then, cover the outside of the ball with a thin layer of Modge Podge and roll it in Epsom Salt. This makes it look like a real snowball. Don’t worry if it doesn’t cover evenly and you have some thick spots.

Take a baby sock and cut it down to size. Fold up the bottom and glue it to your snowman head. I took a needle and ran thread through the top of the hat so I could tie it to the ornament hanger.

Let it dry for about one day, and then glue on buttons or beads for the eyes and mouth. We made the carrot nose out of pipe cleaner.

Now, go hang your cute snowman on your tree!

Linking to StonegableWorthing CourtCedar Hill FarmhouseConfessions of a Plate AddictTThe Turquoise HomeA Place of My TasteThe Happy Housie, The Blissful Bee, My PinterventuresThe Lady Prefers to SaveThe Kolb Corner, Craving Some Creativity,  Let’s Get Crafty, Diane and Dean DIY,  Starfish CottageBluesky Kitchen,  Potentially Chic,  McCall Manor, and Odds and Evans,  The Quintessential MommyChristine Everyday,  Little Miss DexterousDécor To AdorePoofing the PillowsAt Home With JemmaWhite Spray Paint,  and French Country Cottage!

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24 Days of Christmas: Christmas Trees from Styrofoam Cones


I found some of these Styrofoam cones on clearance at Michael’s and I wondered what I could make with them.


I quickly started perusing Pinterest and I found a host of awesome ideas, like this one:


While I liked this idea, I decided to go with something I already had in my stash.


I used hot glue to secure the edges to the cone, and then I just wrapped it around. When I finished, this is what I had:


I put them in my daughter’s room. These sweater trees are so cute, and the pink is so perfect in my girls’ room.

What Christmas DIY have you done lately?

Linking to StonegableWorthing CourtCedar Hill FarmhouseConfessions of a Plate AddictThe Turquoiseaquifer and HomeA Place of My TasteThe Happy Housie, The Blissful Bee, My PinterventuresThe Lady Prefers to SaveThe Kolb Corner, Craving Some Creativity,  Let’s Get Crafty, Diane and Dean DIY,  Starfish CottageBluesky Kitchen,  Potentially Chic,  McCall Manor, and Odds and Evans,  The Quintessential MommyChristine Everyday,  Little Miss DexterousDécor To AdorePoofing the PillowsAt Home With JemmaWhite Spray Paint,  and French Country Cottage!

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Second Sunday of Advent


The second Sunday of Advent is upon us. 

On the second week of Advent, the second candle is known as the “Bethlehem candle,” which symbolizes faith. The Bethlehem candle is meant to remind us of Mary and Joseph’s journey to Bethlehem. 

I always think about how much faith and trusting in the Lord Mary must have had to take that journey. To travel such a great distance and so close to delivering her baby. That doesn’t sound like a plan any of us would make, but God had a plan. And His plan was perfect.


Tonight as we light the second candle, read Luke 3:4-6:
Luke 3:4-5New International Version (NIV)

4 As it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet: “A voice of one calling in the wilderness, ‘Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him.
5 Every valley shall be filled in, every mountain and hill made low. The crooked roads shall become straight, the rough ways smooth.

This week, let’s pray that the Lord prepares our hearts for the Christmas season and that we may remember the faith of Mary and Joseph and emulate that faith. 

Have a wonderful week.

Linking to StonegableWorthing CourtCedar Hill FarmhouseConfessions of a Plate AddictTThe Turquoise HomeA Place of My TasteThe Happy Housie, The Blissful Bee, My PinterventuresThe Lady Prefers to SaveThe Kolb Corner, Craving Some Creativity,  Let’s Get Crafty, Diane and Dean DIY,  Starfish CottageBluesky Kitchen,  Potentially Chic,  McCall Manor, and Odds and Evans,  The Quintessential MommyChristine Everyday,  Little Miss DexterousDécor To AdorePoofing the PillowsAt Home With JemmaWhite Spray Paint,  and French Country Cottage!

 

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24 Days of Christmas: 2017 Christmas Home Tour

Over the HillBirthday PartyDecoration Ideas

I am so excited to share the 2017 Christmas Home Tour with you this year! I feel like this is honestly our prettiest Christmas ever. It hasn’t been the best of years, so I did more this year than I usually do.

This is our main tree, in our living room. I used the same red and gold ornaments as always, but this year, we added some gold ribbon.

This lovely tree lives in our dining room and has ornaments from my childhood on it.

My girls have white trees with pink and purple ornaments. Here is my oldest daughter’s tree.

Each year, we get them a new ornament for their trees. Some of our favorite “Emorie inspired” ornaments are on the tree.

Aubrey’s tree sits atop her end table to discourage her from messing with it. It doesn’t help- she still messes with it.

Like her sister, she gets a new ornament each year.

Our tree in the office contains all of our personal ornaments as a family. We buy a new ornament each year and put it on this tree. Nothing on this tree looks alike or matches at all. It’s random, it’s crazy looking, but it’s my favorite. Lots of memories on this tree.

In our room, we added a tiny little tree this year and this cute terrarium I found at JoAnn’s.

This cozy corner of our bedroom is decked out with a Christmas throw and a pillow with the famous red truck.

Our nativity lives in the living room. It’s even more special to me this year as my grandpa built the manger and he died this year.

This red berry wreath lives on our front entry mirror.

Our living room couch (soon to be replaced) has these super cute Christmas pillows in it:

Including this one I made last year from placemats:

Our office, Home of the random tree, also features this “Christmas art,” which is really just some gift bags that I framed last year.

This galvanized pail Of ornaments lives here, too.

Our other nativity scene lives here as well. My grandma bought me this one and I think they’re lovely.

Our faux mantle is looking extra cute in our dining room.

I found this cute battery operated lantern at Walgreens:

I changed up our fall vignette just a little for Christmas:

And decked out our China cabinet like this:

I hope you have enjoyed our Christmas Home Tour this year! Join us this week for handmade ornaments and more.

Linking to StonegableWorthing CourtCedar Hill FarmhouseConfessions of a Plate AddictTThe Turquoise HomeA Place of My TasteThe Happy Housie, The Blissful Bee, My PinterventuresThe Lady Prefers to SaveThe Kolb Corner, Craving Some Creativity,  Let’s Get Crafty, Diane and Dean DIY,  Starfish CottageBluesky Kitchen,  Potentially Chic,  McCall Manor, and Odds and Evans,  The Quintessential MommyChristine Everyday,  Little Miss DexterousDécor To AdorePoofing the PillowsAt Home With JemmaWhite Spray Paint,  and French Country Cottage!

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24 Days of Christmas: Wood Slice ornaments, a Christmas roundup

Wood Slice Ornaments

I am loving the rustic charm of wood slice ornaments lately. There are so many of them out there, and they’re actually pretty easy to make. I decided today I’d share a Pinterest round-up of my favorite wood slice ornaments from Pinterest.

  1. I love this one from A Muse Studio because it’s so simple and cute.

woodslicesnow

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These ornaments are actually embossed. I would put these on a tree with some cute little woodland creatures and white lights. Aren’t they cute?

2. These snowman faces would be perfect to make with kids. Actually, everything at Made to Be a Momma is perfect to do with your kids.

Wood-Slice-Ornament-7

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How cute would these snowman ornaments be on a tree with white lights and some silver and blue glass balls? I love them! I also love her idea of using them as gift tags on presents.

3. These photo transfer wood slices from Landeelu are great, and they’d be an awesome grandparent gift.

Photo-Transfer-Christmas-Ornaments-DIY-Tutorial-via-Landeelu-600x2116

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4. How about these custom ornaments from Forage Workshop on Etsy? I am thinking of ordering a few of these myself.

forageworkshop

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I hope you have enjoyed this Pinterest round up. I cannot wait to show you which wood slice ornaments I decide to make.

And P.S.: Home tour coming tomorrow!!!!

Linking to StonegableWorthing CourtCedar Hill FarmhouseConfessions of a Plate AddictTThe Turquoise HomeA Place of My TasteThe Happy Housie, The Blissful Bee, My PinterventuresThe Lady Prefers to SaveThe Kolb Corner, Craving Some Creativity,  Let’s Get Crafty, Diane and Dean DIY,  Starfish CottageBluesky Kitchen,  Potentially Chic,  McCall Manor, and Odds and Evans,  The Quintessential MommyChristine Everyday,  Little Miss DexterousDécor To AdorePoofing the PillowsAt Home With JemmaWhite Spray Paint,  and French Country Cottage!

 

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