Wednesday, December 10, 2014


IT'S CHRISTMAS TIME!!!  I absolutely LOVE Christmas time.  I love decorating, I love wrapping presents, I love giving to others, I love the smells of Christmas, I love the reason for Christmas and the fact we celebrate the birthday of the best gift we could ever get, Jesus!  Pretty much love everything about it.  So, with that being said, I volunteered to be on our local tour of homes this year for Christmas.  It raises money for our local library so it was for a good cause:)  I had people ask me, are you crazy, why would you volunteer? I was so happy to do it thought it was not stressful or a task for me.  Mike was not so excited when I told him I had volunteered "us" because he knew that meant work for him.  My husband loves me SO much thought he was ready to get up on the roof and get the lights up right away (can you hear the sarcasm in that sentence).  Really though he knows how much I love Christmas so he was not surprised I volunteered:)

So this all started in about September, so I had plenty of time to think about what we were going to do and when we would start decorating.  Now I'm sure you are thinking, if I was doing a tour I would start decorating before Thanksgiving so it could all get done (because the tour was on December 5 & 6, one week after Thanksgiving).  Now that would normally be a good idea but you might remember a few posts back I was telling you about the turkeys we were raising for Thanksgiving (at our house).  I could not skip the fall decorations at Thanksgiving with a house full of people.  Sure, they might understand but it just didn't seem right.  I did however start putting up some Christmas before Thanksgiving (I am not CRAZY!) So we had a mixed decorated Thanksgiving. 

So I will step back for just a moment and share a couple pictures of the DELICIOUS turkey we raised:)  (He Really was great!)  I'm just glad they weren't cute...made it easier to take them to process...

He was HUGE...28.4 pounds to be in the oven but hung over the edge of the pan.

Ok, back to Christmas!!
We had a pretty good turn out for the tour.  Friday night those of us that were opening our houses got together and went as a group to each of our houses.  There were four houses and the library on the tour.  I was glad to have to opportunity to see everyone's house and see fun ideas they had while decorating (one house had a "melting snowman" in the bath tub).  It was nice to be done on Friday with the house so Saturday we just relaxed and I did a couple of last minute things I just couldn't get done before the home owners came through Friday (like wrapping presents).
So I will take you through a small tour in case you missed it:)

Here is the house as you drive up
This one it is still daylight but you can't see our name in the dark (and yes, my loving husband climbed a the hand those lights up there)
The house at night (off in the distance is the chicken coop and the windmill with red lights)
This was the day the lights went up:)  Austin was so excited to help, Lauren is usually up there with Mike but she was having a girls weekend at my mom's.
When you come in our backdoor (backdoor guests are the best, and that is where you pull up to the house) you are immediately in the dining room.  I took this looking back at the door you enter from.  I set my table because I have always wanted to be the house people walked through with the table set so cute:)  Hey, we all have our things...
 Here is one of the place settings...I folded the napkin in the shape of a tree on half of the plates.
 The other half I had these napkins and wanted to use them.   All settings got a salt cellar though (individual salts for each place, they used to use them until salt shakers became popular)
 The kitchen got some garland and lights to make it festive.

 As you head to the living room, my wonderful opening has lights and garland and ornaments displayed on it
Looking up at the opening
 From the living room back to the dining room:)  Both sides have lights.
 Making your way around the living little snowmen (one is Lauren's and the other Austin's)..saw it and thought it was a cute way to put presents around, each one gets a snowman on Christmas morning to open
  Our mantel with the stockings patiently waiting to be filled
 The Tree!!  I Love Christmas trees:)

 The full view of the living room and the stairs
 All the years of Christmas!
 We have all the Santa pictures on display every is fun to see how the kids have changed and remember the years.
This is also where my nativity scene is displayed...remember the fun and remember the reason!
 As you make your way around the staircase from the living room, I have my village houses on the stairs (my grandmother in Canada hand painted all of these).  
You can't see them from the picture but going up the stairs on the garland are wooden ornaments and ornaments we picked up when we used to go to the Christmas tree farm and cut down our tree (until we decided that was why I was sick EVERY year at Christmas time)
 The villages all lit up:)

 Into our room...we had lights and garland on the headboard
 And our bathroom...the red is wonderful for Christmas decorating:)

 I had all kinds of spots to put stuff in here....

 As you make your way up the stairs I have my Barbie tree at the top.  These Barbies were all from my grandmother.  Every year she would give all the grand kids an ornament, all the girls got Barbies.  When it first started it was a little strange, a Barbie ornament??  But as the years went on I would look forward to my Barbie ornament.  The year they stopped I have to admit was a little sad, I have 15 ornaments from the years she did these.  For a couple years the Barbies have not been out because with two children their ornaments are taking over the family tree.  This year however, I decided the Barbies needed to be out and they rightfully deserve their very own tree.  So in a happy spot at the top of the stairs they all hang:)

Into the kids rooms, they each got their own tree (they both wanted their tree pictures instead of their whole room:)
 This one is Lauren's
 And Austin's
 I can't forget the outside little touches...on my front porch is my cowboy snowman:) can't really tell but he had a cowboy hat on.

 Out back we added some lights around with the little deer and a tree
 Hope you enjoyed my tour:)  don't run over the lights on the side of the drive as you leave...this is looking from the house towards the road.  My husband did such a good job on the entrance.
Overall it was a lot of fun.  Even Mike enjoyed visiting with all of our guests, some knew him from the feed store and some didn't realize we were "The Newman's" (funny when you know people by their first name and think you don't know them because of their last).  Since we do not know a lot of people in town (being in a small town if you don't know more than half you are still unknown) it was nice to meet some new people and put some names to faces.  I don't know that I would do it again next year (since they need new houses next year for people to see) but I would say I would do it again.  Honestly, I would love to just have an open house for people to stop by (I am weird like that).

I hope you enjoyed my Christmas time decorations and house:)

On a little side step...everything else in life is going great!  Lauren is still having fun with her show cow, who will be breed this week:)  We will be cow grandparents hopefully in 9 months!!!  Both the kids made the A Honor Roll for the first and second 6 weeks!  This Paper Cowgirl is still living the dream well on her way to a real Cowgirl one day.  We also got new additions this past weekend...

Meet Jackson:)
 And his friend Cotton...Cotton is the neighbors but we each got one so they could stay friends (they came from the same place and one would have been left behind if we didn't get both)  they will both live at our house.
Austin thinks they are the best thing ever...he loves to walk them everyday and take care of them.

We always have something going on and plenty to do around the house.  Coming up we are looking forward to Christmas, a show at the end of December, Fort Worth Stock Show in January and Houston Livestock Show in March!!  Exciting times ahead.

I hope to have something exciting to write about soon but if not in the next couple of weeks, Merry Christmas to everyone.  Have a wonderful time with your family, be safe and remember why we give presents and celebrate this time of year.  God gave us the greatest gift in the form of a baby long ago so we could be forgiven. 

Happy Birthday Jesus!!
Until next time...

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