christmas around our home 2013

DSC_5173 copyWEB“It came without ribbons! It came without tags! It came without packages, boxes or bags!…then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before! ‘Maybe Christmas’ he thought, ‘doesn’t come from a store…maybe Christmas perhaps…means a little bit more!’” Dr. Seuss.

Publication11 DSC_5178 copyWEB“Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” ~An Angel, Luke 2:10-12

DSC_5184 copyWEB“Christmas is a day of meaning and traditions, a special day spent in the warm circle of family and friends.” ~Margaret Thatcher

DSC_5193 copyWEB“May Peace be your gift at Christmas and your blessing all year through” ~Author Unknown

DSC_5201 copyWEB“At Christmas, all roads lead home,” ~ Marjorie Holmes

DSC_5203 copyWEB Publication21WEB                    We wish you a Merry, Merry Christmas!

december – diciembre

The most wonderful time of the year is here! Christmas is my favorite Holiday. It has always been and since I’m a mom with more reason. Christmas time is all about creating fond memories with and for my boys. And I plan to do just that with our yearly Countdown to Christmas, a tradition we started two years ago. You can read about here, here and here.

This is going to be a little tough time, though. It’ll be the first Christmas since G was born that we won’t spend with my side of the family. We spent G’s first Christmas in Lima and last year all my family, parents, brother, sister and brother-in-law, came to New York. This year was our turn to go to Lima but with the insane airplane ticket prices we decided it was a smarter decision to postpone our annual trip to Perú. So it’ll be a little nostalgic Holiday season but full of family moments and lots of love nonetheless.

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My parents are still here and they’ll be part of our first week of Christmas activities. I’m so happy we’ll be able to share these moments together. Our calendar is filling up with family and friends gatherings already and we’re looking forward to them. Because that is what Christmas is all about.

our first thanksgiving at home

DSC_3173 copyWEBYesterday we had our first Thanksgiving at home. We planned a small gathering since it was just us four and my parents who are in town. Kind of last-minute, which is how things happen most of the time around here despite all my efforts to be organized {but that’s another story}, we invited over two foreign EF Academy students. The school places students that have no family or close friends for special occasions like these, with local families as part of their programs and as a way for students to experience American traditions. Ours it not exactly a typical American family but we are so grateful to be able to celebrate this important holiday and so we wanted to open our home and share our first Thanksgiving at home with them.

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I had some green plates and cups so I decided to use them for our tablescape. The center piece was a real pumpkin I borrowed from the Entry Hall console, with some little fake gourds I had already. Fresh flowers placed in little mason jars with little tags. For place cards I used pieces of corrugated card stock and a Thanksgiving place card I found online. I tied the napkins with green ribbon and added some leafs from our yard, that L helped picked up.
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As I mentioned yesterday my mom cooked a delicious Thanksgiving meal for all of us. I helped a little and took lots of notes {I may attempt to cook Thanksgiving dinner next year!}. While Nona cooked, L and I set up the table, Nono entertained G and M just hang out.

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{I don’t have many pictures of our feast because well, I was busy eating!}


{I never got a change to take pictures of our Entry Hall Thanksgiving decor, just have these two pics from my iPhone. I made the sign and leaf pennant with my Silhouette Portrait machine}

After we ate, we just relax and watched some reruns of the Macy’s parade. G skipped his nap so he went to bed very, very early. After L and I watched a movie, and after both kids were in bed, the adults watched another movie. It was a simple, small but beautiful Thanksgiving Day!

happy thanksgiving!

This year we got to spend Thanksgiving Day with my parents who are visiting from Perú. And so this was our first Thanksgiving at home. And I loved it! It was a small, simple dinner but full of love. Thanks to my dear mom who prepared an amazing meal for us trying to follow the American traditions. She did an amazing job and we filled our bellies until we were all food comatose. Really, it was that good! We had a couple of guest over, too but more on that later.

Now I just want to take a moment before the day ends to say I’m very, very thankful for my amazing family. I feel truly blessed to have a compassionate husband, healthy, happy boys, supportive parents and loving siblings who love me no matter how crazy I get. You ALL are my life and I’m grateful for it.

photo-3Happy Thanksgiving 2013

thanksgiving decor

Last year from Halloween decor I jumped to Christmas decor. I completely skipped Thanksgiving. We were going to spend Thanksgiving in Boston, so it didn’t make sense {to me} to decorate if we were not going to be around.

This year is different. My parents are coming to visit and we’ll spend Thanksgiving together. We’re not sure about our plans yet but still I think it’ll be nice to have some Thanksgiving spirit going on. Especially since this is a Holiday we don’t celebrate in my home country. After 8 years in the United States I have learned to appreciate this celebration and understand its meaning and I’m sure my parents will like to learn more about the story and traditions behind it.

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I tend to lean towards simple, modern, clean decor most of the time. I think a few details will be more than enough to commemorate this special day. I’ll work on it on the weekend, so it’s ready when Nona arrives. Let’s see what I come up with.

November – Noviembre

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Mother nature was kind to us and gave a gorgeous month of October. The weather was beautiful for the most part and all Halloween festivities ran according to plan and we did a lot of family activities. It was a fun, fun, fun Halloween 2013. We spent the weekend putting decorations away and trying to straight up the house a bit, because…

this is another special month. Not only we are celebrating L’s birthday, but also our beloved Nonos are coming to visit! I couldn’t be happier and more excited. They will be able to spend some weeks with their grand kids and I’m already planning some special family outings. And let’s not forget about Thanksgiving.

I usually get all excited {and stressed out a little} when we have guests, because I want to complete all unfinished home projects and start new ones. But this year I’m letting it go. I’m not worrying about having the guest bedroom ready {which is now serving as my office, too} and if the sheets match the wall color, or having the bathrooms done, or having the kids toys organized. We still want and we are going to do all those projects {and we have many, believe me}, but we are not going to rush. We’ll do them when the time is right. And that time, is not now.

This month I’m going to concentrate in having an awesome party for L, creating special memories for my boys and their Nonos, spending one and one time with my mom {she and my sister are my best friends and I missed them so much} and just enjoying my parents are here, with us.

It’ll probably be another hectic month, but another memorable one. Welcome November!

and the halloween festivities begun!

Last Friday we kicked off our Halloween festivities with a little Halloween party we hosted at home. As I mentioned before, we did it for the first time last year {you can see our party featured in WeeWestchester here} and it was so much fun, we wanted to do it again. And after this second time we now know it’s going to be a family tradition. It was complete chaos, with kids, ages 3 months to 9 years old, running around but so much fun. Head over to mamemima to check it out.

halloween1Next day, L had a Halloween birthday party and later we had planned to go to our town’s annual Halloween parade. The plan was that M and G walked to town, and then L and I would meet them there to watch the parade and  return home together. Well, L and I never made it to the parade!

halloween2There were some Halloween events going on in the neighboring towns, but I didn’t expect it  to be this traffic mayhem. L was disappointed.  But we didn’t give up, though. We finally got to our town and met G and M for frozen yogurt.

halloween3Sunday morning we took our weekly family walk and pay a visit to the scarecrows at a nearby park. The scarecrows were made by local middle school and high school students so it was a great show of kids creativity.

halloween4This week, the Halloween festivities continued. G had a couple of Halloween celebrations yesterday morning and today has a Halloween parade. L was allowed to wear his costume to school and will have a little celebration in his classroom.

halloween5Of course today’s highlight will be tonight when we go out trick or treating. L is very excited and has been training G to say “tik or trit”. So cute!

I have to say it’s been a great Halloween 2013 and I can honestly say that I definitely enjoy Halloween more since I had kids. Really.

Happy Halloween! Feliz Dia de las Brujas!

halloween around our home

Just some pictures of our Halloween decor this year. This year I kept the festive decor to the entry hall and dining room. I re-used most of last year decorations. They were in good shape and I didn’t have time to make new things. I think it worked and everything looks completely different.

DSC_0999 copyWEB DSC_1000 copyWEB_edited-1{ card stock bats }

I love our card stock bats. It was such an easy project yet makes a big impact. Last year our friends the bats visited us in our dining room and gallery wall {you can see them here}. These year they migrated to the hall. The sweetest thing was the next morning after putting these little guys up {I did it at night while the boys were sleeping}. L and G were coming down the stairs when I heard L say “Look G, bats” and G responded “Wow, bats! Cool”. So cute! DSC_1231 copyWEBDSC_1224 copyWEB_edited-1 DSC_1243 copyWEB_edited-1{ halloween gallery art }

What an easy way to decorate for this occasion with a Halloween gallery art. No, I didn’t make nor print new Halloween art or photos. I just re-used my last year Halloween printables and some Halloween scrap booking paper I got on sale. And I didn’t take the frames down and switch photos/pictures {who has the time!}. No, I just taped them on top of the glass with painters tape. To disguise my lazy approach I added some white web around. The final touch, twisting the frames. Last year Spider Web art ended here, too.

DSC_1229 copyWEB DSC_1249 copyWEB{ halloween pennant }

I used the “BOO” signs from last year’s party {you can see it here} to make a new Halloween pennant. I added a back layer {spider web paper trays I got at the Christmas Store last year} to make it a little more interesting. I completed the look with a few things I had around. L carved a pumpkin last weekend at a local Fall festival. I’m honestly not a big fan of real pumpkins, but I had to include it in our decor since my boy made it. I also repeated last year stripped candle project, this time with skinny, tall candles.

We’re having a little Halloween party for some family and friends tomorrow so I still have more decorating to do!

our little halloween project in Oh my! creative

Yesterday Susan from Oh my! creative featured our one and only 2013 Halloween project. I’m really flattered she picked my Spooky Door Knockers  among so many other amazing ideas.

Head over there and check out all the amazing and creative crafts. Sometimes I find it mind-blowing how many imaginative, artistic, talented people are out there. Really, I wish my days had extra hours just to browse away and navigate through some much inspiration.

I warn you. Be sure you have time on your hands when you visit her site because you’ll stay glued to your screen. You’ll be inspired. So many ideas, so many projects!

DSC_0899 copy1Halloween Door Knocker

Tomorrow I’ll be sharing our Halloween decor this year. So stay tuned!

halloween decor {on a budget} – chic spooky door knockers

DSC_0883 copyWEB I mentioned in my last post that this year I re-used most of our Halloween decorations, just switching things around a bit and relocating everything. The Halloween wreath and Spider Web art ended up somewhere else in the house, leaving the front doors empty.

I was at the Dollar Store the other day looking for something I could use for the front door, when I saw these spooky plastic door knockers. I immediately remembered this cool project I ran into while browsing some Halloween linky parties last week. Not sure why, but I just grabbed one knocker {the skull} even though we have double entry doors {I guess I thought I was just going to see how it came out first}. Since I couldn’t find a frame I like I picked a mirror, thinking it’d make the project a little more interesting {and it did}.

I gave the mirror frame some coats of white spray paint and used gold for the knocker. I attached the plastic knocker to the mirror with super glue and used command hooks to hang it on the door. I liked the result so I went back to the store to get another skull door knocker. Of course they didn’t have any more. I grabbed a mummy instead. Ideally they’d match but whatever. I still like them.

DSC_0886 copyWEB_edited-1 DSC_0901 copyWEB DSC_0891 copyWEBDSC_0902 copyWEBI like this little project a lot. It’s a good alternative to the classic “front door wreath”. I like wreaths, too, but sometimes it’s nice to think outside the box and do something more original and unique. You can use different frame types and sizes, different backgrounds {fabric, paper, etc}. The possibilities are endless.

The whole project cost $4 dollars and took me about half hour to make. You can’t beat that, right?

Linking up with Sugar and Dots, Polkadots on Parade, Ginger Snap Crafts, Made in a Day, Oh my Creative, 52 mantels.