29 November 2010

50 Christmas Activities

I always have good intentions of doing one Christmas activity a day during the month of December, but without a little planning, it just doesn't happen. So this year, I decided to make a list of all the possible Christmas activities we could do. Each day we'll pick one depending on how much time we have. My goal was to come up with at least 25, but as you'll see, this list is a bit longer... You'll find the descriptions for lots of these in the Archives.

What are some of your favorite Christmas/holiday activities?

1. Decorate sugar cookies and take them to a neighbor
2. Decorate the Christmas tree
3. Put up Christmas lights
4. Drive to see the Christmas lights
5. Make gingerbread houses
6. Visit Temple Square
7. Make a countdown to Christmas candy chain
8. Go Christmas shopping
9. Get a picture taken with Santa
10. Go caroling at the hospital
11. Read Christmas stories
12. Sleep out by the Christmas tree
13. Celebrate St. Nicholas Day
14. Watch a Christmas movie
15. Go to a nativity display
16. Make Christmas candy
17. Dip pretzels
18. Do a Sub-4-Santa
19. Drink hot cocoa on the front porch
20. Celebrate Advent
21. Host a Christmas open house
22. Read the nativity story
23. Try a new Christmas recipe
24. Start a Christmas Jar
25. Wrap presents
26. Watch Elf
27. Watch the First Presidency Christmas Devotional
28. Build a snowman
29. Drink hot chocolate on the porch with Grasshopper cookies
30. Carol around the neighborhood
31. Write letters to Santa
32. Start a new Christmas tradition
33. Host a Holiday Open House for neighbors and friends
34. Watch Home Alone
35. Go to an outdoor ice skating rink
36. Dance to Christmas music
37. Make a homemade gift
38. Watch Miracle on 34th Street
39. Write and mail Christmas cards
40. Cut down your own Christmas tree
41. Have a Christmas-around-the world night
42. Make a Christmas craft
43. Go to a light parade
44. Go to a free Christmas concert
45. Attend the city's tree lighting ceremony
46. Read the Christmas Carol
47. Read the Scripture Advent each night
48. Do a Christmas card or ornament exchange
49. Volunteer at a soup kitchen
50. String popcorn for the tree

27 November 2010

Fall Place Settings

Hope you had a good Thanksgiving! I decided to make some simple place settings for Thanksgiving dinner. I wanted to use only things I had around the house. This is what I came up with:

What I used:
  • small clear bags (from Michael's)
  • Fabric leaves from a dollar store
  • Rafia
  • Harvest color kisses
  • Brown crinkly paper from a gift

23 November 2010

Thank you Notes

We started a new tradition this year. Its great being thankful, but its even more important to show gratitude in one way or another.

So...we decided to write thank-you notes to a few people who we are especially grateful for this year.

19 November 2010

Holiday Movie Schedule

If there is something about the holiday season that I LOVE, its cuddling up to watch a good Christmas movie. Yes, I'm talking about any kind...the classic cartoons like Frosty the Snowman and Rudolph, or the magical ones like Miracle on 34th Street.

If you're still trying to build up your Christmas movie collection like we are, you may not have them all at your fingertips. But never fear, ABC is playing many of them on TV this season.

So grab some popcorn, a blanket, and enjoy!! We will be.

For a PDF-printable list of all the shows, click here

12 November 2010

Thanksgiving Decor

This is the first year I've had different decor for Halloween and Thanksgiving. Its been fun changing from bright orange for Halloween to more earthy tones for Thanksgiving. Most of my fall decor came from a Big Lots 90% off clearance sale a few years ago. My motto--decorating can be cheap and still classy.

My mantle.

-Pedestal-thrifted $1
-Vine pumpkin- thrifted $1
-Leaf garland- Big Lots $1
-Pumpkins- fresh from a pumpkin patch- 50 cents each
-Cream turkey- made from foam board and painted
-Branches in vase- branches from a nearby park, acorns in bottom, and vase I had

Our sofa table is sporting a craft I made last year.

My friend and I used old 2x4s, cut, sanded, and painted them. Then we used various papers and mod podged it all on!

10 November 2010

Cookie Contest Recipe 2 & 3

The Cookie Contest continues...

It's taken me a while to get through all of the recipes because I've also been trying out other festive recipes. But don't worry, my husband loves chocolate chip cookies and can't go THAT long without some.

Recipe 2... 6 1/2 out of 10

Recipe 3... 7 1/2-8--Best so far!

08 November 2010

If you want to be happy...

Every year before Thanksgiving, my mom would pull out the Thanksgiving file folder to read us a story called, "If you want to be happy..." I'm not sure where she got it. It wasn't a published book. She had cut pictures out of magazines, glued them on to construction paper, and had the text correlating with the picture on the back of each sheet of paper.

Year after year, we would read this story. And the older we got, we loved it even more. Last year, I decided to make a copy for my own family. I didn't have a collection of magazines to get pictures from, but thanks to Google images, I was able to get just what I needed.

This story has such a great message that will help you get into the true holiday spirit and the secret to being happy. Click on the link to read it for yourself. Enjoy!

{Feel free to print it for your own family.}

06 November 2010

Thankful Turkeys

All to often Thanksgiving gets overlooked by Halloween and Christmas, so our family decided to start a little tradition to try and keep our focus on our blessings for the entire month of November. At the beginning of the month we put together what we call our "Thankful Turkeys". We each make a picture of a turkey and list things we're grateful for on the turkey's feathers. It doesn't have to be fancy. Just have fun with it! We hang them up somewhere in the house where we will see them every day to remind us of the things we wrote down. Then every day for the rest of the month we add a fall leaf with one thing written on it that we're grateful for. This has been such a great tradition for us and has kept our thoughts on our many blessings as we go through the Thanksgiving season. Here's some examples from the last couple years...
(Landon's 6 months old so he had a little help from us, ok a LOT of help from us!)

And here's a link for a PDF of the leaves and this year's Turkeys in case you want to use them for your families...
Turkey (print 2 copies of the feathers)

04 November 2010

Craisin Bacon Salad Recipe

My best friend made this salad for me for my bridal shower and I have been in love with it ever since! It is SO yummy and perfect for a get-together. It was a hit at the Fall Baby Open House.

Craisin Salad

3-4 Heads of lettuce or various greens
2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
1 1/2 cups parmesan cheese, shredded
1/2 pound bacon, cooked and crumbled
1/2 cup almonds, slivered and toasted
1- 6 ox package of Craisins
3 apples, diced
4 teriyaki chicken breasts, cooked and sliced

3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup red wine vienegar
1 tsp. dry mustard
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup red onion, chopped
1 cup oil

Mix salad ingredients. Blend dressing ingredients in blender and chill. Pour over salad.

02 November 2010

Chicken Corn Chowder Recipe

This is one of the recipes from the Fall Baby Open House you asked for. It is from a close neighbor of ours.

Chicken Corn Chowder

1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can cream of potato soup
1 can corn
2 cups cooked cubed chicken
1 1/2 cups milk
1 tsp. rosemary
1 tsp. dried or real onion

Mix all ingredients in a large pot. Bring it almost to a boil and then remove from the stove. Stir 1 cup of cheese in right before you serve it.


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