Friday, December 19, 2008

6 Days To Christmas!

I can't believe that in 6 days Christmas will be here. Hope everyone has been able to take a moment to ingest some Christmas spirit in-between normal life. All week I have been going over lists. I'm getting things ready for when I see my family on Christmas Eve. I've managed to keep the apartment neat and clean. I even set up the guest bedroom for the kids. I set out board games, books for them to read, and coloring books and crayons which should keep them occupied all evening. All of my gifts are bought, wrapped and under the tree. The house is all aglow. This weekend I plan to take it easy. I'm not going to do much as I will need all my energy come Monday when I begin cooking.

Right now it's pouring down rain and I'm sitting here at my desk - eating a nasty hotdog - counting down the hours. I will be off until January 5th (doing happy dance). So you won't hear from me again til the new year.

I hope everyone has a wonderful Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year! And to all my friends at MHH and CEO I especially want to wish you all the best. It has been another great year of sharing thoughts and ideas about Christmas and everyday life. My holidays have been the best they've ever been since meeting you and for that I am truly thankful (smiles, smiles, smiles; hugs, hugs, hugs). God Bless.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Making Cookies Using Cakemix

Today I received a nice surprise. A co-worker gave me a canister of chocolate cake mixes and a canister of sugar cookie mixes by Martha Stewart. I was telling another co-worker about the gifts when she asked if I've ever made cookies using cake mix? I never knew you could do that!

All you add to the cake mix is a stick of soften butter and eggs. Mix those together than add the mix. She also said that you can add more butter if need be because you're trying to get the mix like cookies dough. Plus she said that if you like, you can add sugar or vanilla extract to get the flavor you want. One tip: Do Not Add Any Liquids (ie: milk, water, vegetable oil) as called for when making a cake.

I plan to try this, this weekend with the chocolate cake mix. Plus I have some white chocolate chips to add to the mix. Will let you know how they turn out.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Great Gifts

I just had to share these with you. One of the ladies on my job is a fabulous knitter. Earlier this year I asked her to make me two scarves for my best friend and her husband of their favorite football teams. Here is what she made:

For my best friend

For her husband

Don't they look great! I am so pleased at how they turned out. I can't wait to see their faces when they open their gifts Christmas Eve. I love the scarves so much that I asked the lady if she could make a Ravens scarf for my their son for a birthday present. His birthday is in February. I know that once he see's theirs he's gonna want one too. I can't tell you all enough how excited I am about these two gifts. This lady is awesome.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Holiday Tour of Homes

Today members at Magical Holiday Home are showing off their beautiful decorations for the Holiday Tour of Homes. Everyone has done an outstanding job of making their homes festive for this special time of year.

I too want to share how I've decorate for the season. Much of the decorations are the same as last year and are on this blog from last year, so I've just posted pics of decorations with a few changes and additions.


Friday, December 12, 2008

Only 13 Days To Christmas

I can't believe Christmas is almost here. Time to get ready for my annual Christmas Eve family dinner. I'm expecting a lot of guests so there must be plenty of food to go around. I'm so excited I can't wait to see everyone. Each year I like to serve something different. This years menu is:

party wings platter (buffalo, fried and Bruce Lee).
cold-cut platter
deviled egg platter
pork shoulder
green beans
Seafood salad
potato salad
fresh baked rolls

fruit platter
home made cookies
Oreo balls
Cream Cheese pound cake

Beverages include several types of cocktail drinks for the adults and a special holiday punch for the kiddos. And my all-time holiday favorite, eggnog.

You may be wondering what are Bruce Lee wings? Well I'll tell you. In the city, a few blocks away from the famous Baltimore Inner Harbor, there is a wonderful little market called 'Cross Street Market'. It's a very popular market (next to the world famous Lexington Market, which is a few miles away from Cross Street) that sells all types of fresh produce, meats and other treats. Inside the market there is a stall which sells very delicious chicken. The chicken is crisp and crunchy, dipped into some kind of sauce which has a light bourbon flavor. OMG when I tell you it's delicious, it's delicious! And what's so great is that the chicken stays crisp even though it's covered with the sauce. A co-worker turned me on to them about two years ago, and I've been hooked ever since. I found myself getting some on a weekly basis. The owner's name is Bruce Lee, hence the name.

This weekend is basically free for me (no job to go to) so I plan to get my baking done. Saturday I'm getting up early, about 5 a.m. to get started. I also want to attempt to get my bedroom back in order. I just can't seem to keep it together. LOL!!! Then later Saturday evening my nieces and nephews will be over for pizza and movie night.

Sunday I hope to spend the day just relaxing. Black Friday I bought a lot of movies at really cheap prices. I plan to lay around and watch movies all day while nibbling on cookies and eating ice cream.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

22 Days to Christmas

Today is going to be a productive day for me. I'm making sure of this. First thing I did today was change the screen saver and wall paper on my computer. Then I changed the ringtone and wall paper on my cell phone. During lunch I will down load some Christmas tunes to my new MP3 player. It is one of my gifts to me.

First thing after work I'm heading to Walmart. I need to get a couple boxes of popcorn and other treats for the movie baskets I'm putting together. Then it's straight home to finish decorating. Everything except for the kitchen and the dining room are done. Also I need to dress up the trees. The ornaments are out and ready to go.

Once the decorating is done it's celebration time. To celebrate the Twenty-Four Days to Christmas" I have planned movie & popcorn night. Tonights feature is "Fred Claus" with Vince Vaughn. But before I start the movie I want to watch the lighting of the Christmas tree at Rockefella Center in New York on NBC.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Countdown Week Three

It's week three of the countdown. This week has been all about gifts and giving. I had a long list of people who I wanted to give a gift to so I started way back in January. I'm proud to say that I have about 85 percent of my gifts made or bought. Gifts I have left to get are those that contain treats (food) like the movie baskets, pizza kits, an Italian basket and a wine & cheese basket. I haven't wrapped any gifts yet. I planned a whole day to do that in early December. And when it's time to wrap gifts, my mailing and wrap station is set up and ready. Over the weekend I spent some time sorting through the gifts I've bought/made thus far. I sorted according to families. Each family will have different but coordinated wrapping paper from the other family. It makes knowing whose is whose a lot easier for me. I always group each families' gifts together but by the time everyone arrives and places there gifts under the tree, the groups get mixed all up and I'm on my hands and knees reading the names on cards.

Tuesday one of my childhood friends and I went to Walmart and I was able to knock a few more things off my master shopping list. I bought more gold ornaments for the main tree, found some cute Christmas paper bags for 25 cents each...the perfect size for the acrylic post-it note holders, a 3 ft. tree to go on the balcony (though I think I want a larger tree out there instead). Plus I decided since the tree for the balcony was going to have multi color lights, I would also hang multi icicle lights from the roof-line so I bought two boxes. I found a pretty ceramic poinsettia soap pump to go with the poinsettia theme in the bathroom and a set of red charger plates for the dining table. One of my best friends who was with me really liked the silver charger plates but was short on funds (she's a single parent raising three boys and times are tough) so I got them for her. I could see she really wanted them and she has always been there for me in the worst of times. It made me feel good that I was able to do this, allbeit, small thing. Besides the holidays are about sharing and giving. We had a good time looking at all the decorations and gift ideas. Right now she sounds like a little girl (lost her voice) so I was teasing her all evening.

Earlier in the day I worked on an altered clipboard. It's nearly done. I just need to find the right font alphabet stickers to spell out "days until" and tags to attach the numbers. I have some really neat stickers I used to spell out "CHRISTMAS". I made three, one for the office, one for home and the third is a gift for my best friend.

Speaking of giving I need to call squeeky today. I just remembered I have some gold and white frosted glass ornaments she can have for her tree. While talking about our decorations, she mentioned her colors were gold, silver and white. They will look great on her tree. I bought them from Big Lots on clearance two years ago and never used them.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Count Down To Christmas Week Two

This is the second week of the Christmas Countdown. Earlier this week I received my copy of names of members participating in the card exchange so I have started signing and addressing cards/envelopes. I have a cute little Christmas basket holding the cards which will go in the mail the last week of November. We have members from all over the world participating in the exchange which is very exciting.

Yesterday I walked over to the KMart behind my job and picked up this guy.

It's a singing, melting snowman. It will be part of the decor in my office. Now I need to find an animated Santa. There wasn't much to see as this Kmart is just starting to put out their Christmas stuff. This weekend I'm going to my favorite two places, Dollar Tree and Walmart, plus a couple of other places. I hope to pick up several gifts to cross of my list and do a little window shopping.

I was looking through the Oriental Trading catalog when what should I see? A set of snowmen chair covers. I was so excited...will order them next week. Part of the decoration plan for my office was to cover my chair with a snowman cover and to cover the lady I share the office with chair with a santa hat cover.

Well it's nearly lunch time. A few of my coworkers and I are in the mood for fried Lake Trout.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Christmas Countdown Begins!

Woohoo! Sunday kicked off the Christmas Countdown over at Organized Christmas and I for one am glad it's here. I came to a point where I didn't know what to do next. This week were getting organized and most of the suggestions for this week I'm proud to say were done weeks/months ago.

Every day were supposed to spend at least 15 minutes getting organized. I have spent most of the year doing this. (LOL) I turned my computer station into Holiday Central. There I have my notebook planner, computer, wrapping supplies, and other essential items needed. Above my computer station I posted a copy my my holiday calendar as a reminder of what I will be doing over the next two months. I have scheduled in parties, shopping trips, family activities, cooking, cleaning, decorating, etc.

Other things we are doing this week:
  • Put together a gift list...mine's has been done since January.
  • Create a Christmas card list. This year I will have lots of cards to send out due to members at MHH joining in the Christmas Card Exchange. I think we're near 40 members. This is going to be so much fun and I already reserved a place for everyone's card.
  • Plan/schedule pre-holiday home improvement projects. The only improvements I need are to have the ceiling in my living room painted and new blinds for the bedroom windows. I will speak to management at my apartment next week to get these scheduled.
  • Start planning now if you will be traveling over the holidays (If not done already). I never travel out of town during the holidays. I love to be home during this time and lucky for me most of my family lives nearby (anywhere from 5 to 35-40 minutes away). My brother being the farthest as he and his family just moved into their brand new house in Pennsylvania (Just over Maryland State line) in August.
  • Make arrangements for overnight guests. As I've said everyone lives nearby so I don't have overnight guests. Oh, just remembered I do have one cousin who spends the night with me. She and her son always spend the night at my house Christmas Eve and then on Christmas Day she spends the day with her father's side of the family. I need to call her today.
  • Make appointment for photo sessions. I sent out photo cards of me to family last year. This year I'm going to print photo cards of my nieces and nephews, have each one sign the cards and send them to family members. I just thought of this idea (LOL).
  • And finally, schedule carpet cleaning. It's suggested that you make appointments now as cleaning company's schedules get very busy this time of the year. I do this myself along with cleaning my living and dining room chairs.
Later this week I will do the family holiday values and home spruce-up exercises. The spruce-up should be short and sweet as I've just finished giving my apartment a thorough deep cleaning. Once Thanksgiving is over I just take down the fall decor - making way to start putting up Christmas decor. I love doing the family values exercise. That wasn't always the case. The first time I did the exercise, it seemed very hard to do. It took me days of thinking about earlier Christmases and what was great about them and what was not so great about them because I had nothing documented to fall back on for inspiration. That's why I'm so glad I found CEO Organized Christmas. Now each year I can look over exercises from the last 4 or 5 years and see how my holidays are a little more organized and most importantly how I am able to actually enjoy them and not feel overwhelmed or stressed. Now I know what recipes were a success or failure, if my family enjoyed themselves at the annual Christmas Eve family dinner...if they liked their gifts, did I stick to my budget, etc.

I'll post the results to the exercises later this week.

Monday, October 20, 2008

An Interesting Read

I've been very busy lately with working two jobs. Right now I'm playing catch-up. I just updated my Rudy Day Blog and now I'm reading blogs of my MHH buddies. There's one blog I visited which gave helpful tips on how to survive the holidays with family. I realize that for many the holidays can be painful and stressful. Please read this post as I hope it will help anyone who may be dreading the upcoming holidays. God Bless!

I'll be back with hopefully some exciting updates to share. This coming Sunday starts the Christmas Countdown over at Organized Christmas. I really need this countdown to get me back into the swing of things. Right now I feel like I don't know what to do next.

Where Has The Time Gone?

I was just over at cmerth's blog when I noticed that it's been 3 weeks since my last post. I can't believe we only have 66 day's and Christmas will be here. I have been working so much trying to earn extra money, to make sure that Christmas is extra fun this year that I've all but put the holiday on the back burner. I haven't followed the HGP for the past two weeks and I missed the Fall Tour of Homes. :o( Not to mentioned that the Christmas Countdown starts this upcoming Sunday. So I've decided to stop working so hard and get focused (again!)

I'm taking the day off tomorrow from both jobs. First thing - finish the tasks on my list from HGP. I think this week is the kitchen. I have to give my kitchen a good cleaning out but since it's small hopefully it shouldn't take much time. I've already emptied out the fridge/freezer. It's nearly completely empty. I need to reorganize the food cabinets, sort through expired spices and baking supplies and purchase supplies, move my Christmas dishes from the top shelf of the cabinet down to where they can easily be reached once the holidays are here. Give my floor and oven a good scrubbing, stock the fridge and freezer with easy/quick meals on those nights I don't have time or feel like cooking and other cleaning organizing that needs doing. Then I'll revisit the list for the previous weeks and see what needs to be completed in each area. I know I won't get everything finished tomorrow. What I don't finish will be worked on Wednesday and Thursday evenings as I do not have to work at my parttime job. I want to get the cleaning completed before the countdown begins that way I can focused just on the holiday planning.

I'm sitting here at my desk looking at the boxes of Christmas decorations sitting on top of the file cabinets. I can't wait to start decorating my office. I'm doing a totally different look. I think my co-workers will be presently surprised. I especially hope to lift the spirit of one of them who shares the office with me. Her sister was diagnosed with Cancer back in early September or late August. On Columbus Day the sister went into cardiac arrest and was put on life support. The family decided to take her off this past Friday and she passed away. My co-worker has gone through a lot in the last few months and I just want to make her feel not-so-sad during the holidays.

Saturday is Rudolph Day. There's only one more before the "Big Day" in December - the day we celebrate the birth of Christ. I have to admit that I don't really do anything spiritually-wise and have been thinking of what I can do to change that. I will talk with my mother for advice.

As for this Rudy Day, I'm pulling out all my decorations. I will be checking lights, finish writing room decorating ideas, checking that I have all recipes in my holiday notebook, signing/addressing greeting cards all while listening to an instrumental holiday CD. I like to hang lighted garland around the living/dining rooms and hall. I have the larger lights that I wrapped around garland but this year I want to switch to smaller lights. I picked up a lot of boxes of lights at Walgreens on clearance after the holidays last year that I will use. The larger lights will go on my new tree for the balcony. Thinking now, I'll probably spread this day out to the entire weekend as I also need to finish my crafts.

Monday, October 6, 2008

A Day Closer To Christmas

Today during my lunch break I went to the nearby Dollar Tree. I was in Dollar heaven! I went there to pick up some fall bushes to finish my topiary for the diningroom table. Wow did my eyes get very large when I saw the isles of Christmas decorations. I picked up some really cute photo ornaments for the office tree...and that was all (as far as Christmas was concerned). I will go back when I have more time to look although to be perfectly honest I don't need any more family and friends will tell you. Just as I'm typing this I do need some ornaments to fill in my tree...wish I had picked them up. The photo ornaments are really cute! I only bought 6 as I already had a few from last year. They are green, gold and red - ornament, bell, Christmas sock, sleigh, Christmas tree, and wreath. They will hold wallet size (or maybe a little smaller) photos.

This year I'm decorating the whole office. I've got it all written out. I've brought in the decorations that I usually have in the master bedroom and will take the decorations I used last year in the office to use at home. I'm waiting for the other Dollar Store to put up their Christmas stuff. I see that they've cleared an isle so I'm assuming it will be very soon. (Everything in this store is not a a dollar though, but their Christmas stuff usually is.) Anyway they have the red and gold glittered gift box ornaments I need. I have some already but need more...I hope they have them this year.

Here's my plan:
  • Cover the main door and the head assistant's door with burgundy paper with gold lettering
  • Cover my boss' door with the coordinatin green paper with gold lettering.
  • Hang wreaths decorated with small gift boxes on all three doors.
  • Cover bulletin board behind my desk with snowman print paper. Cover the lady I share an the office with board with coordinating Santa print paper.
  • Cover our two desks with the green paper mentioned above. Add gold ribbon and bow to look like wrapped gifts.
  • Cover our two chairs with the big Santa hats. (It would be great if I could find one that was a snowman for my chair.)
  • Cover top of file cabinets with batting; decorate 3 ft tree with gift box ornaments, lighted red glass beaded garland, clear lights, photo ornaments, lighted star tree topper and coordinating ornamments - inside each ornament will be a picture of everyone in the office; The two smaller trees will sit on either side of the larger tree and will just have red lights and a large red glitter ornament as a tree topper; also there will be an animated snowman and Santa; along the front will be my small Christmas village pieces and maybe a few small wrapped gifts. I'm undecided about adding the gifts as I don't want the display to look to busy.
  • And finally...The bookcases: cover the fronts to mimmic a fire place; cover the top with red & white felt (The red felt will be cut into a pattern and layered over the white felt); a small tree will sit on top as well. We have baskets up there for work and they will be decorated with little velvet bows. To finish it off, our little 4 ft inflatable Santa that my boss brought in for us a few years ago will stand in front.
  • I will dress up the clock which is hung over the book case with a wreath
  • I need to find a place to display my altered Countdown to Christmas clippboard...When I finally get it done. Here's one that one of my MHH buddies made. Isn't it adorable. I hope mine's will look almost as nice.
Well that's it for now. I'll be leaving work in about 45 minutes and I need to start clearing off my desk.

Friday, September 26, 2008

90 Days of Fun

I've just returned to work this morning after several days of pain. I have a wisdom tooth that will be extracted on Monday and I can't wait. The pain has put a damper on my Christmas spirit. I have things to do but just can't get them done right now. Hopefully after Monday, I will be back to my old self-- pain free. I feel okay today (Thanks to pain medicine). I'll try to do something today as it relates to Christmas.

September Rudy Day

Well the 25th found me at home in lots of pain. I have a wisdom tooth that's giving me hell. The pain seems it's worst at night -- bedtime. The pain takes over the entire right side of my jaw. I have been forced to sleep sitting up. My appointment with the oral surgeon is Monday. I will celebrate Rudy Day afterwards...hopefully pain free. I have a lot to do and time is growing short.

Monday, September 22, 2008

93 Days Of Fun

Today I'm kind of bummed out because I'm at work, bored and really don't know what to do. I spent the morning visiting with my friends over at MHH to see how they all are doing. Now I'm here -- blogging. It's a gorgeous day, though it was a little foggy very early this morning. What I'm really itching to do is work on my crafts. I had planned to start this weekend but I was out all weekend enjoying time with friends, family and the beautiful weather.

96 - 94 Days of Fun

Day 96: Nothing to report.

Day 95: Spent an evening with a few friends -- a girl's night out. There was plenty of food and drinks. To top things off, the weather was beautiful the entire day. We played games and just laughed and acted goofy -- a lot.

Day 94: When I awoke in the early morning I made myself a cup of hot chocolate and sat out on my balcony to watch the sun finish rising. It was very quiet and peaceful. I watched the squirrels run around and notice how perky my potted mums looked. More and more flowers are opening everyday. After sitting out there for a bit I started thinking of other things I'd like to do - taking time out for myself. So I wrote down a few things and then penciled them on my calendar. Then I went inside and spent a couple of hours cleaning my master bedroom. Later I took my nieces and nephews to the farm to pick apples. It was Johnny Appleseed Day. The kids had a blast - and so did I.

Friday, September 19, 2008


Well Christmas is less than 100 days away. The weather has begun to get cooler and the days are getting shorter. Oh how I love this time of year. I've been sitting here at my desk thinking of ways to spend the upcoming Rudy Day. Well for starters, there's several homemade gifts needing doing. I've been so busy getting ready for Fall that I'd basically put my holiday crafts on the back burner. While working on my crafts, I'll put on a few holiday movies.

It's chilly out today. I don't think it will get pass 70 degrees. Tonight it's expected to be in the 50's (40's in the suburbs - where I live). Better pull out a heavier comforter tonight. I'm in the mood for some snowman soup (Hot chocolate, 3 Hershey kisses and a peppermint stick). Since the evenings are a lot cooler I think I'll put on my Christmas pajamas in honor of Rudy Day. After this month, there's only two Rudy's days left. I had better get my butt in gear and hope that I'm ready by the time Christmas arrives.

97 Days

SparkleNana, an MHH buddy has started a fun topic counting down the days to Christmas. Each day, she wants you to try to do something fun as it relates to Christmas and report what you did at the forum. The only things I''ve done since the countdown began is go through my planner. I need to start really having some fun. Actually, working on this blog is fun. I enjoy coming here and writing about my adventures as I prepare for the holiday season. And now that we're under 100 days I will be here even more.

On my lunchbreak, I think I will go window shopping. A MHH buddy said she went into KMart the other day and saw that they had Christmas trees out already. There's a KMart right behind where I work. I will walk over there on my break to see if they have their trees on display.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

99 Days and Counting

Well whether you want to except it or not, Christmas will be here quicker than quick. Will you be ready? I sure hope I will be.

I've been getting my apartment in order by following the HGP plan over at MHH . It's been neglected all summer. We're now into week three - the foyer. My foyer is small and leads down a hall to the bedrooms and bathroom. I was able to get 99% of it done in a day. Saturday I will tackle the coat closet which is part of the foyer. Last week was the living room. It's almost done. I just need to rearrange some furniture and shampoo the carpet, sofa and two chairs. The chairs/sofa are white so I clean them twice a year. I hope to get new furniture after the holidays. With the new arrangement I'll have more room for the Christmas tree and the millions of gifts that be underneath it.

I spent a few hours yesterday looking through my holiday notebook. I wanted to see how my planning was going. My gift list is looking really good. I've been buying two gifts at a time throughout the year which has been a big help and won't cause me to worry too much about money when the holiday is here. The gifts I have left to get are mostly goody baskets that need to wait to be put together. There's two special gifts I can't wait to get.

My best friend and her husband are big football lovers. She loves the Giants and he loves the Redskin. They both are originally from New York but the husband has always been a die-hard Redskins fan. The two of them are really funny when their teams play each other. That's a show in and of itself to see (better than halftime). Oh and don't let them go to any of the games. You'll cover your face and shake your head during the whole game. Anyway a lady on my job knits or crochets (don't know the difference). I have her making me two scarves -- one with the Giants logo and one with the Redskins logo and in the teams colors. The scarves will be a little longer and wider than your average scarf. I got the idea last year when we were watching a Redskins game. My best friend's husband noticed a woman in the stands wearing a similar scarf. He really liked it -- mentioned it (every-so-often)the rest of the evening. So when I got home I made a note of it in my planner. My girlfriend knows about his gift but not about hers. Wait til she opens her gift.

After looking over my checklist I need to finish going through my decorations and writing out my plans for decorating each room, update my gift closet list and work on remaining holiday crafts. There's one craft I want to do that I recently thought about and that was a gingerbread wreath for the kitchen - the theme for that room. For the upcoming Rudy Day (25th) I think I'll spend the day doing crafts. I have a lot of catching up to do as I've been spending a lot of time preparing for fall.

Monday, August 25, 2008


It's the first day of school and the weather is dreary. It's supposed to rain - Yeeeeeey! Unfortunately I'm at work so I can't really enjoy it -bummer. The weather will be in the upper 80's but by morning and for the remaining weekdays the temps will only be in the 70's. Anyway today I will attempt to get a few things done. Lunch time I'm going out to pick up two more gifts. My list is really getting down. Will add them to my gift closet list. I'm also going to redo my Christmas Eve dinner invitations as I've decided I don't like the ones I printed. I should have grabbed a Christmas CD to play in the car. On a day like today, some holiday music would definitely have me in the Christmas spirit. I have to work my parttime job tonight as well so won't be able to do much. If we get out at a decent time, I'll put on a Christmas movie and work on selecting photos for the calendar I'm making for my grandmother.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Pleasant Weekend

This pass weekend was very nice. I did some gift shopping and finished10 of the 11 post-it note pads that will be given out to the ladies at work. I originally did 5 but they were so nice and easy to do that I wanted to do more. Here they are:

They're not quite finished. I bought some gold letter stickers that I want to use to add the recipient's name. Plus I need to straighten the bows a little. I saw some great note pads in Michael's craft store that I may use. They came is pretty colors and shapes. I didn't get them because I couldn't remember the color scrap papers I used to make the holders.

I still have one more to do (will finish today), then will start on my altered clipboards. I only have 3 of those to do.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Christmas With The Bailiffs

Just wanted to share a few pics of the bailiffs office all decked out for Christmas last year as promised. One side of the office focused on toys and such, the other was about home and comfort. Hope you like them.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Pass The Halfway Mark

Well we only have 141 days til Christmas. I don't know about anyone else but I'm very excited.

I've had a busy but fun summer which is why I haven't posted in months. (LOL) But I'm back and hope to be posting more often as summer is officially over (for me anyways). Now I can focus more on my Christmas preparations.

Today I've been hard at work. I had made a To-Do list a while back and I have nearly completed everything I need to do.
  1. Checked the website of my favorite local garden store and other local spots for list of holiday events.
  2. Created and printed invitations for my annual Christmas Eve dinner party.
  3. Updated blogs
  4. Had to re-write my master shopping list. I'm keeping it in my purse from this point on.
  5. Started an inventory of my Christmas decorations and a room by room decorating plan.
  6. Finished 5 acrylic post-it note pad stands to be given as gifts. Have 6 more to do. There's more about this at MHH.
  7. Finished my homemade greeting cards.
  8. Finalized my 24 days to Christmas calendar.
I still have more craft projects planned so I need to get to the store to pick up supplies and get started. I also want to check online for Christmas movies and music to add to my collection.

I went Dollar Tree the other day and they already have an isle of Christmas stuff out. I found some Christmas theme post-it pads to use with the acrylic post-it stand that I will make for myself. Also I picked up fun ornaments to decorate a 3 ft tree which will sit outside my front door I think... I'm not sure where I'm want to put it. Plus I bought cello treat bags for the Kissmas Whisks. This is a sweet treat I like to give out with my gifts.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

August Rudy Day

Well let's see. This month Rudolph Day falls on Monday. I will have to plan my activities for the weekend before. I was going through the calendar section of my holiday binder and as I did that I realized that the things that I have to do are finish shopping for gifts, complete my crafts, inventory the remaining Christmas decorations, finish writing up my plans for decorating my apartment, get my place ready to decorate (cleaning), buy postage t0 mail Christmas cards/address and sign cards, create and print Christmas Eve dinner invitations on the computer, and try a couple of dessert recipes. I should be excited, but for some reason I feel like I'm missing something. Oh I just thought of something else, I want to add to my Christmas movie/CD collection. Nope, still not feeling excited. Hey I know what's missing, the really fun stuff like playing Christmas carols, watching Christmas movies, drinking hot chocolate - things like that. Okay, now I'm feeling a little excited. Will let you know what I did on the 25th!

Post Christmas In July

Christmas in July is over and for me it was the boost I needed to get into swing for the holidays. I have to admit it was slow getting started with all the other activities I had going on but once I found the time, there was no stopping me. I finished my handmade Christmas cards as well as worked on a few other holiday projects. The acrylic post-it note pad holders were very easy and simple to do. I originally was going to do 5 but after seeing how nice they looked I've decided to do a few more for the ladies in our accounting office instead of the glass ornaments. Over at the Magical Holiday Home forum there was a month full of fun things to do. I have to remember to bring my camera with me so that I can post my pictures.

I went through and did an inventory of most of my decorations. I have so many I got tired and had to stop. I made a date to go back and finish doing inventory for October Rudy Day. I will be giving some things away that I will not use this year. From that I started writing out my plans for decorating each room in my apartment as well as my area at work. I have my office, the front door/stairwell area, and part of the livingroom already written out.

I wanted to have a CIJ dinner but I over-extended myself with my "celebrate me" plans. I was having too much fun celebrating my birthday. I had a menu planned with decorations and activities all written down. Next year I'll schedule the dinner for the earlier part of July.

I officially placed my master shopping list in my purse to have on hand whenever I'm out shopping. I think I have about half of my gifts bought. I went so crazy with stocking stuffers for my nieces and nephews that I am going to have to use the really big Christmas stockings to hold everything. I should have picked some up today as the Dollar Tree near my job already has a whole isle of Christmas stuff out.

My menu for Christmas Eve is finalized and grocery list is in my holiday binder ready for market day.

If I keep up this pace I think I will actually be ready for Christmas this year. Hope you all will be ready.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Christmas In July Schedule

Here's a list of everything I plan to do this month:

  1. Go through my Christmas decorations. See what I don't want or need to add. Create a decor plan.
  2. Work on several holiday craft projects (homemade greeting cards, ornaments and post-it holders)
  3. Purchase gifts for 4 of the people on my gift list.
  4. Plan Christmas In July menu (date set for July 31st).
  5. Try a new cookie recipe.
  6. Do some of the housecleaning tasks from the Houseworks+Holiday plan.
  7. Inventory holiday movies/music
  8. Watch a few holiday movies. For the first week of July over at MHH we watched "Scrooged" with Bill Murray. Hilarious!
  9. Put my holiday CD's in the car.
  10. Create and print my Christmas Eve dinner invitations
  11. Finalize holiday menus
  12. Shop for stocking stuffers
  13. Create grocery lists for baking/holiday menu
  14. Update my blogs (started today)

Well that's all for now. I've just been over at MHH to see what everyone else is doing. Now I am going to create my July calendar with my '24 Days of Christmas' activities. Will write back soon.

Christmas In July!

Well this month over at Magical Holiday Home boards, we are celebrating Christmas In July. The first week was light because of the July 4th celebration. We were asked to tell of our most favorite/memorable Christmas. My favorite Christmas memory was when I was about 8 or 9, my grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins and friends all came to our house for Christmas. I remember us kids entertaining the adults by doing dances, singing or telling jokes. It was really a wonderful time. My grandfather, father, an aunt, an uncle and a cousin have since passed away. Whenever I think of them, I always remeber the Christmas pasts that we were all together.

It was also the year I got my very first sewing machine. I was asking for a 'Sew Perfect', instead I got a Singer sewing machine. I had that machine for about 27/28 years. Never did learn how to make clothes or anything like that... just the basics.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

I don't have much to report. I did get started on my Christmas cards but that's about it. The weather was too nice and I just had to be out in it after weeks of cold and/or rain. LOL The cards are coming out pretty nicely. I need to do about 10 and so far I have three done.

Now I'm focusing on June. Don't have much family/outdoor activities planned this month so maybe I will be able to focus more on Christmas planning.

For June I want to:

  1. Make several more handmade Christmas cards
  2. Buy gifts for four people on my list (I have to make up for May)
  3. Start holiday handbag project
  4. Update my address book
  5. Gather holiday decorating ideas.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Preparing for May-Day

I'm falling behind a little in my plans but am slowly getting things done. I just picked up the remainder of supplies needed to do my craft projects. So for May's Rudy Day I will start on the homemade cards. I have 10 to make and I want them to be perfect (or as perfect as I can get them) so I need to get started early. My other goal is to shop for two more people on my gift list. I have quite a few people I give gifts to (about 30 to be exact). I know that's a lot but I love to give. One day I'll scale back. LOL!

This month Rudy Day falls during the Memorial Day weekend and I will be attending a couple of parties so I limited my to-do things to only two because I know me and I will not feel like doing much as I will be quite busy the entire holiday weekend.

Anyways I'll let you know about my accomplishments/failures on Tuesday. Hope everyone has a happy and safe Memorial Day, and remember why we have this day to celebrate in the first place. God Bless.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Happy New Year!

Wow it's been along time since my last post. My holidays were splendid! I had a great time with my family at our annual Christmas Eve dinner. Actually we had to do it after Christmas as many of my family members - including myself - had either some type of stomach virus or the flu.

I'm really getting this blogging business. I've already created two more blogs - "Celebrating Aggy" and "Hey Rudolph!" Plus I just learned today how to add a counter so that I can see how many people visit my blogs. Such fun!!! The next blog I plan to create is all about Fall. Second to Christmas, Fall is one of my favorite times of the year. There's so much to do in the Fall...decorate, Halloween, Thanksgiving.

Last time, I mentioned that at work there was a friendly wager between the bailiffs and the court clerks on whose decorations were the best. Well the winners were the bailiffs. The clerks were a little upset because they felt that since their office was much bigger and they had more decorations, they should have won. After the competition, everyone enjoyed the big luncheon. I was hoping to post the pictures today and put up a poll so that people here can tell me which they like better but I don't have the pictures on this computer to show you. I have to get them from my computer at home. Now I'm sorry I erased the memory card. I thought I put them on this computer.

Anyway, I've been doing a lot of thinking about this year's upcoming Christmas. So far I've made of list of homemade gifts I want to do for family members.
  • Advent calender made using small gift boxes for my 9 year old niece
  • Glass ornaments for the ladies in the accounting office
  • Homemade greeting cards
  • Holiday handbags made using felt
  • New holiday pillows for my livingroom
  • A photo calender of all the grandkids for my mom
I've written and rewritten my menu three times...finally got that done. My gift list is 97% done. I never know what to give my mom and stepdad. I have my master shopping listed started and am adding to it regularly as needed. I'm nearly finished shopping for stocking stuffers for my nieces and nephews. It's still early in the year so I'm bound to pick up more stuff. LOL Last year I printed some holiday stories good for reading and will be putting them in a binder. I would like to decorate the front cover of the book with something festive but not sure what. I may even do several books to give to the kids this year for Christmas. Over at Magical Holiday Home, 'May's Monthly Magic' is posted, so I'll be doing some of things listed there as well.

Friday, April 25, 2008

April Rudy Day

One of the things I have planned was to start my holiday craft list. I'm not really crafty so I look for easy, simple projects but that I know my family will love to receive. So I went through my tearfiles and decided that here's what I want to make this year.

I bought lots of Christmas cards after the holidays on clearance but I wanted to make some special cards for people like my mom, grandmother - other close family members. I found this ribbon card project that will be nice to do with my nieces and nephews. They can give them to their parents and grandparents. Plus it will be special because it was made by loving little hands. I love these Merry Christmas and JOY holiday cards. I've added the supplies need to my master shopping list.

A few years ago I made a calendar with pictures of all the grandkids, myself and my brother for my mom which she loved. She still has that calendar up in her office so I'm going to make her another one with updated pictures of everyone. I will also make one for my grandmother but will add all her grandkids, great grandkids, and great-great grandkids.

For a few of my co-workers I am going to make them nice ornaments. I already purchased several packs of clear glass ornaments which I found in Dollar Tree stores. I will fill them with potpourri and glue miniature poinsettias and greenery around the cap then tie with some pretty satin ribbon - ready to hang on the tree.

Baby Blanket for baby's first Christmas

For my 9 year old niece, an advent calendar made out of gift boxes.

For myself and my best friend, this lovely purse will be soooo cute to carry to a holiday party.

My livingroom sofa and chairs are white, so I thought these festive red and white pillows would look really nice on them.

I had planned to go out today to start shopping from my master shopping list but my foot is aching a little from too much walking today (mending from a bad fall) so I'll put it off for Sunday.

Tonight I'll finish my 24 Days of Christmas Activities list and try to start setting up my gift closet. I've made several purchases since the beginning of the year and they have been sitting in my livingroom in a corner in bags. Every time someone comes to visit they head straight toward them - being nosey. I have to head them off and tell them to keep out. LOL I need to get them out of site quickly.

Happy Rudy Day!

This morning I arrived to work half an hour early before anyone else so that I could have some quiet time. In my haste to get here early I forgot to grab my holiday planner. No worry, I remembered what I have planned to do. I brought in one of my Christmas cds and blast it through my computer while I ate some cereal. Once my co-workers started arriving, I turned the music off.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

What's Going On So Far

Here's what I've done so far:

1. modified holiday planner
2. created master gift list (Ginger's Challenge)
3. purchased Christmas cards
4. started master shopping list
5. created a budget

For April :

1. plan holiday craft projects
2. create a gift closet
3. make 24 days of Christmas activity list
4. shop from master shopping list (stocking stuffers)

Rudy Day List

On the 25th of each month I will spend the day doing one or more of these things:

1. Create/modify holiday planner
2. Create/modify holiday budget
3. Update address book
4. Create/purchase greeting cards
5. Sign/address greeting cards
6. Plan holiday family dinner party
7. Create/buy party invitations
8. Plan holiday menus/grocery lists
9. Make trips to store for non-perishable foods
10. Gather Christmas decorating ideas
11. Inventory/purchase holiday decorations
12. Calendar-in activities with friends/family/myself
13. Plan easy-to-make weekly meals
14. Update holiday movies/music collection
15. Try a new holiday recipe
16. Create a list of homemade gift/decor ideas
17. Work on a homemade craft project
18. Create/update gift list
19. Shop from master shopping list
20. Set-up/inventory gift closet
21. Inventory/purchase gift wrap supplies
22. Decorate for the holidays
23. Chat with friends at Magical Holiday Home
24. Visit fellow Rudy Day bloggers
25. Make a 24 Days of Christmas activity list

Monday, April 14, 2008


Each month for Rudy Day I will share my plans and ideas in preparing for Christmas. For those of you who aren't familiar with the day, my friends at Organized Christmas and Magical Holiday Home started this monthly ritual to help people like me (procrastinator/last minute person) plan for Christmas. Let me tell you it has really made my Christmases easier to enjoy.