Getting Wrap Ready! And We’re Not Talking Reynolds Or Snoop Dogg

We are so close to Christmas I can almost see the presents under the trees! It’s an exciting time, and though it’s way too early to start decorating (I mean, I am, but I love Christmas), it is time to take stock. The mad rush after Thanksgiving can get a little too hectic too fast, so let’s start out inventory now by seeing what wrapping paper we’ve got. Most stores have Christmas up already, and those tend to have sales on this stuff now, but you probably have more left over from the year before than you think. We have a list here of what to take stock of.

If you’re looking for a little inspiration- a look into the sensational season to come- we have some unique ways to wrap here– oh and a few more here. These are just a few, we’ll cover more later, but they are a teaser for the most wonderful time of the year!

World-Wide Christmas

In our country we have some pretty established traditions for Christmas, like milk and cookies or hanging stockings. Other countries though have different traditions, and today we’re going to look at some. For example, in Ireland they replace the milk and cookies for Mince meat pie and Guinness! That’s one happy Santa.

Spain, Portugal, and Italy have an odd one. They set up a model of Bethlehem in villages all over these countries. Along with the usual crew of Jesus, Mary, Joesph, and the Wisemen there is a man called the Cagnar, which translates less then appropriately and he is seen in the act of defecating. While this may seem outrageous to us, it’s outrageous to them that we don’t have it! In Japan the traditional Christmas meal is…. KFC?! Shocking, but true. In fact they’re so busy on those days you need a reservation to get KFC on Christmas. Sweden builds a giant straw goat that is meant to be burnt down before Christmas, but it’s a game. Some people are meant to protect the goat, others to burn it. Since 1966, the goat has only been burnt ten time! Check out more ridiculous and interesting Christmas traditions here!

Keeping A Christmas Classic- Red And White

Red and white are classic Christmas colors, but so often the classic colors can seem overdone. Whether you’re going for classic and understated or reveling in the festive nature we’ve got a great gallery of red and white for you to check out.

White is the in color this season, we’ve showed you some before, but the way the red works into it with these designs is phenomenal. Simple touches like a little white tree or red sashes running down tables can really make your décor come together beautifully. Candles are another way to rock this look without having to shake everything up. Between cloth, candles and even candies there are a lot of little details you can use to turn your look to classic elegance, one that is often overlooked is a dash of red and white dishes. Whether they’re plates or cups, the red and white on your dishes is a great, understated way of bringing about this look.

See the whole red and white gallery here!

Delving Into Design/ Decor Dilemmas

Whether you’re decorating for a holiday or looking to update a room, we all come into some design dilemma from time to time. You don’t just want to stick things places for no reason, you want your deigns to feel beautiful and reflect you and/or your family. We have some suggestions on how to solve design/ décor dilemma for you.

First, remember your inspiration. If your setting up a room, what room or concept inspired you? How is it different? This goes for holiday decorating as well- if you’re decorating for Christmas, what feel are you going for? Comfort? Classic? Festive? Remembering your inspiration can get you to work a room.

Try picking out a part of the room you love, figure out what it is you love about it, and work the design around it. This is how people will sometimes decorate a whole room based on a couch or their Christmas tree. If those don’t work, take something out. Taking things out of the room gives you new perspective on what you need, what you want, and what really belongs. For more tips follow see here!

The Sounds Of The Season

Music has the power to move and inspire. We’ve all felt it before. And what gets up in the mood for the holidays more than Christmas music? Well, maybe the smell of pine, but mostly it’s the music. Of course, there’s so much of it around how do we know where to get the best that holiday music has to offer? Obviously a lot of those holiday CD’s don’t make it, you can see them in bargain stores all over, but if you want to cut through the chaff and get straight to the wheat give Stubby’s House of Christmas a look. It’s a blog where you can track the newest and best Christmas music. We’ll be putting up an article of theirs from time to time to help get you in the spirit, but give their past entries a look and see how to sure up your Christmas music library!

Bringing Outdoor Christmas Color In

Christmas colors tend to be red and green, but how about white and evergreen? You know, that serene combination indicative of the time of year? Bring the beautiful of winter wonderland indoors this year. Whether you’re looking toward Christmas or maybe a near future redesign, take a look at this marvelous color combo to inspire and insight some serene desire.

Christmas Culmination

Kids think that Christmas ends with the presents. Sure, that’s the highlight for them, and it’s usually pretty nice for us, but the big event for the holiday should be the dinner. Whether you have your big dinner on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day, it’s a special dinner, much like Thanksgiving, but usually a bit smaller. It’s a chance to celebrate traditions and make memories with your kids (who won’t be kids for long). The dining room is also a room many don’t think to decorate, but it’s a huge missed opportunity. I, myself, remember how the dining room transformed from a place where my parents did the bills to a place to this gorgeous place set up for one meal some weeks away, and really set the tone for the holiday as much if not more than the tree.

So if you want to really make this Christmas gorgeous or are just looking for an update for your dining room look, check out this image gallery of gorgeous Christmas dining rooms.

Bringing The Backyard To Bear With A Wreath

Fall is here. With it we have Halloween and Thanksgiving followed by winter with Christmas and New Year. There’s a lot of wonderful decorating options for these holidays, but one thing you can do yourself (with your kids help too) is take a part of nature form your back yard and put it up on your door with a wreath. Linked below is a how to guide on how to make your own fall wreath, but it works for a winter one too! Really, once you make the sturdy circle beneath you can make a wreath for each season or holiday and it’s a great way to spend a couple of hours on some weekend afternoon with your kids! Even if you’re not all that into DIY (I know I’m not) it’s incredibly simple and the kids love it. Of course anytime you want them to bring in something from the yard you’d normally tell them to keep out they’re always going to be titillated.

Check out the materials and steps below and use your wreath as a way to ring in the holidays!

Hiking With The Whole Family!

100 Days to Christmas is a whole book about how to prepare for and get in the spirit of the holiday, and this week one recommendation is to hike with the family. Why? It brings the family together before it gets too cold to fit in one more bonding experience outdoors, and it’s a good time to get that list together of who wants want by dropping subtle hints. Check out 100 Days to Christmas here-

A Christmas Card Reminder

We’re getting so close I can almost smell the spruce. Yes, Christmas is coming, and I’m saying this before Halloween because now is the time to consider your Christmas card. Many people have ditched the old habit of putting out a card every Christmas because of Facebook, Twitter, etc. but the fact of the matter is this tradition is too good to lose. If you put just a little time and thought into your card what you are giving out to your family and friends is a picture they can have hanging up on their fridge or wall all year round. Besides which it’s a great way to keep a hard copy of you and your family around. Not to mention the fact that cards are a way to promote the spirit of the holiday.

To do a Christmas card right though, we need some inspiration, you want to have a little style in you celebration after all. Linked below are some amazing Christmas cards people made that can inspire you and others around you to get in the holiday spirit!