Getting ready for the holidays

The holiday’s are here!! I haven’t been around much, but I’m hoping to get back on track with you, my food and exercise plan, and my holiday planning! Here’s the first few things I started working on for the holidays.

 Number 1: My holiday budget

Holiday Budget PDF: This is a PDF for a holiday budget. I make sure to write my “guesstimate” budget on top. What I did was write down each person I buy for, including Yankee swaps and co-workers, and then on the back I added a space that I use for my husband. You could use this space for anyone special though. I write down each gift idea and the estimated cost. On the bottom, I write the estimated total. Then, as I purchase gifts, I write down the gift and actual cost. At the end I see how I did budgeting my holiday spending.

I’m part of a Christmas club with my bank. Many banks offer a Christmas club membership. They took $10 a week out of my savings account and placed it into the Christmas club. Even though it was only $10 a week, I managed to save $600 by the first week in November. (Sometimes when I had left over funds I hadn’t expected too, I would add them to this account.) I made sure to write out my gift ideas early and when the money came in I purchased almost all of my presents! So it’s before Thanksgiving and I’m proud to say, I only have a few things left to buy!

 Number 2: Holiday Party

My husband and I throw our annual Holiday party the Saturday in between Christmas and New Years. This way we know we have a big crowd and we are not stressed for time. I started making my menu already:

Veggie Tray & Antipasto Skewers
Cheese & Crackers & Chips & Dips
Buffalo Chicken dip, Queso Dip, Loaded Baked potato dip

Chicken Wings & Cheeseburger Sliders
Pizza & Spinach and Ricotta Rolls
Desserts: Cookies & Brownies 😉

Drinks: BYOBeer!!
Drunken Gummy Bears & Holiday Punch
Soda, Water, Mixers:
We have lots of leftover liquor from previous parties please feel free to enjoy!

I made an event on Facebook and sent out my invitations. I even already started making my to-do list on what to prep and when! This makes my life a little easier, especially before all the hectic Holiday stuff starts up. Plus I can make sure to have my Peapod delivery ready for food. I started doing Peapod, so when I’m busy I don’t have to worry about food shopping and I’m sure that I will need it right before this event!I already put the things in my cart that I want to have delivered for that day! I’m a prepper, so this may sound crazy to some. But it makes me feel like I’m ready to go.

The To Do list is also super important for making me feel a little at ease. I list out the week prior to my party and write down each day the things I think I can do. Lets peek at the list: Party to do list

You’ll notice I write “cookies and brownies”- It’s in quotations because I’ll probably just buy cookie dough and throw it on a pan and call it a day. I’ll also probably hear from one of friends who wants to bring something and I always tell them to bring delicious desserts! Less work for me!!

 Number 3: Holiday Decorations

I took my wireless lights from the Halloween decorations and put my lanterns together. This is how I usually start to prep my house for the holidays. I like to use the red bulbs because they are more reflective. I put a few bulbs in, wrap some lights, a few more bulbs, a few more lights and so on.

lantern christmas

Our Christmas Tree is VERY nontraditional. We usually do, black, purple, and silver ornaments and a silver star on top. It looks more…us!! We are nontraditional people. My mom always had this tradition of putting our tree up Thanksgiving day, after we finished our meals. I like to keep that tradition going, except we do it the night after. So we spend Black Friday the way people should spend black Friday….not out running around shopping for the best deal, but with each other. We decorate the house, lounge in our jammies, and eat leftovers. So that ha not been put up yet, But I’ll make sure to post pictures when it’s done.

I also…for whatever reason…had pine cones in my Christmas storage bin. I couldn’t figure out what to do with them. As I was cleaning I found this really unique vase my hubby bought me when he had anniversary flowers delivered to my work. So I put a candle in the middle, and placed the pine cones around it. Voilá!

christmas pine cones

 And that’s it for this post! Within the next week I’ll be posting my Christmas tree, some gift ideas for grabs, and party prepping when it’s time!! See you soon…


Fall Decorations

I love Fall!! I love the clothes, the holidays, the weather, and decorating my house!! Here are some of my fall decorations this year:

I bought the Wreath from Target for $20. I like this because it was a smaller size, so its easier to store and doesn’t take up much room on the front door. It’s not necessarily a Halloween wreath and it could be used all season long! I also bought the wreath hanger from target around Christmas, so it was easy to take this wreaths ribbon and just hang it up on the door.   Target Wreath

The flowers I bought from my local supermarket. They were pretty inexpensive, about $9.99. I liked the fall colors and that they were a double color as well with the burnt orange and yellow. I have so many vases at home so I cut them down really low and filled up a square vase. I can usually get my flowers to last a decent amount of time by changing the water every few days!

At the same supermarket I purchased the little pumpkins. My dad and his fiance gave me the day of the dead Bride and Groom for my birthday! What a cute add-on to my fall decor collection!! I love that they independently stand up and looked so cute in the round vase with the pumpkins.

The sparkly bulbs with lights is my go-to decoration for any holiday!!! It super easy to make and pretty inexpensive. I bought the large hurricane vase at Michael’s. I found the black, purple, and silver bulbs there as well and then found little skulls that could go along with it! I purchased the battery operated lights at target. They do all kinds of different things like blink, go on at a specific time, and they are great because I don’t have to plug them in!. So what I do is wrap some lights at the base of the vase (haha that rhymed!), then I put a few bulbs on top. Wrap some more lights around, bulbs on top. And go all the way up until there are not any left! So easy!!!

I also made some delicious Halloween cupcakes, which I normally wouldn’t eat, but I they were on sale at the supermarket, along with the orange frosting and sprinkles that looked like little skulls and I thought “why not indulge a little”! I had one, Anthony had one, and I brought the rest to work for my co-workers to enjoy!

Happy Fall Everyone!!! Next post will be about some fall fashion statements…If there are ever any questions on something I have purchased or you want to know about something I made please feel free to email me or contact me another way!! I would love to be more interactive with my blogging fan base! 🙂