Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Christmas cuteness...

Hi there! If you're interested in entering my contest just scroll down to the post before this one to read and enter. I was going to create a link for you but if you're too lazy to scroll down ONE measly post, you don't deserve to win anyway. ;) Incidentally, all comments left on THIS post will get you an additional entry so comment away people, comment away!

I thought I'd end the year with a few of our Christmas pictures, just some random shots of The Son. I'm sure just about everyone in blogland is Christmassed out right now but I have to post these anyway for posterity, he's too cute not to, ya know?

Here he is as a reindeer in the school Christmas pageant. He LOVED these antlers and wore them throughout the entire holiday. I love the imagination on this kid...

Christmas Eve...he had a little treasure hunt organized by The Husband. It resulted in him finding his new holiday jammies and his outfit for Christmas. I think he enjoyed the hunt more than the actual present.

Christmas morning...The Son was especially excited that Santa put presents in his stocking this year, I'm not exactly sure why it was so exciting but he loved it nonetheless.


and unwrapping...

We always visit my Dad's cousins on Christmas morning and this is what they all got him this year. Needless to say, he was pleasantly surprised! I might have to dedicate an entire post to how cool he thinks having his own vehicle makes him but I'll need to remember the camera next time he takes it for a spin around the development.

He wanted to bring along his shepherd costume so that he could sing "Away in a Manger" for everyone on Christmas morning. It was very sweet. The Son has performing in his blood I guess. "Sing OUT SON! Sing OUT!" No, I'm not a stage mother at all.

Lastly, a picture of The Niece, she was thrilled with her Bitty Baby gift from The Cousins even though it doesn't look like it in the picture, I swear, I can never get a good shot of this little gal. Trust me though, she's as cute as can be.

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday season. Have a safe and Happy New Year's Eve and we'll see you around the blog world next year!

Monday, December 29, 2008

It's my birthday and I'll have a giveaway if I want to!

Hi Everyone! It's finally the day for my giveaway. I say finally because I wanted it to be for my 200th post and then I just couldn't get my act together. I decided to have it on my birthday instead because I knew I'd have a lot more time after Christmas was over we are. Let's celebrate turning 39 AND having 206 posts! Yippee.

I realize other bloggers can give away amazing things like coffee makers and vacuum cleaners but here at CityMomma/CountryMomma, we're low budget so my giveaway won't be anything even close to that exciting. I am giving away two of my handcrafted items. First is a set of my notecards. They're cute, they're functional and when I give them as gifts, people usually really like them. I gave the same set to The Son's teachers for Christmas as well as a set to my Step-MIL. Here's some pictures for you. The set I give away will be very similar but may differ slightly because remember, they're handcrafted plus, I'm not sure if I have any more of the paper for the bag below.
cute little storage bag...

the notecards...

the envelopes...

The other thing I'll be giving away is one of my Scrabble Tile Pendants similar to the oneI've posted below. Again, it's hand crafted so the one I actually make, may differ slightly. This is a picture of one I gave to The Son's teacher...I hope she liked it!

So, in order to enter this giveaway, all you need to do is leave a comment on this post. Some of you have already commented on previous posts and you will have extra entries as per the instructions on those posts. (am I confusing you yet?) Lastly, you can get an additional entry by mentioning my giveaway on your own blog and linking back to this post. Please let me know in the comments if you do that. I will run this contest until January 1, 2009 and will announce the winner on Friday, January 2, 2009. Good luck everyone and thanks for entering!

Friday, December 26, 2008

Our Santa Call!

Well, this post sure has taken some time!

I think I mentioned before that I won a call from Santa through Lindsey at Suburban Turmoil. We received our call on December 21st from Santa Speaking and it was really great! I would definitely use them again next year. The Son loved it. He was a little shocked at first as you will tell if you listen to the recording but he warms up quickly and would probably have talked Santa's ear off if he had been give the chance. The Santa guy did a great job of keeping him on track and The Son is still talking about the call, days later.

I had a little trouble figuring out how to get this call uploaded so you could all hear it. I thought I had it figured out but after posting it and clicking on the link that DID actually work, I realized I didn't want you to have to look at risque' photos while listening to The Son's sweet and innocent call with Santa and by risque' I mean porn. (Just so you know, don't use Zshare as a free hosting site.) I got it uploaded to but when you click on the link, it will take you to that site and I think you'll have to download the mp3 file. I hope that's OK. If anyone knows any other free ways to host my file, please let me know and if it doesn't work for you, please let me know that too...I'm relatively new to these high tech bloggy things.

So without any further ado... here is The Son's call with Santa Claus!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas Everyone!
Be Careful under that mistletoe this year!
Warm winter wishes from the CityFamily/CountryFamily

Monday, December 22, 2008

Here's what's going to happen...

Hi again everyone! Am I just the biggest blog/giveaway slacker ever? I think so. But the thing is...I'M BUSY! It's two days before Christmas Eve and that means lots of baking, crafting, gifts for the teachers, a stupid, useless, not going to tell us anything new at 6:30 PM meeting at work that I agreed to bring cookies to, cleaning the house for family on Christmas day and wrapping the presents, not to mention all the normal everyday things like laundry that have to be done. I haven't uploaded pictures for the giveaway yet although things are pretty much complete. I might add another craft to it since I've been taking so long to make it happen...that will mean two winners!

I didn't figure that my 200th post would fall at this very busy time of year and now it's making things difficult on me. I have decided that the giveaway will happen on December 29th! We will be celebrating my 200th-ish post AND my 29th - I wish 39th birthday all at the same time. You'll get presents and I'll have fun giving them.

So now, we know I like comments and you want entries so...for every comment you leave between now and the 29th...I will give you an entry. (One per post please) I can't guarantee that I'll be posting a lot but who knows, I might need a break from the aforementioned chores. I will also have an extra entry if you mention my giveaway on your blog but you should probably wait until I have an actual giveaway post to which you can link back.

I'm off to bake some cookies now...the batters are mixed and chilling and my oven's heating up. The Son is at pre-school and I have two hours before I go back to get him so I must get busy. Have a great day everyone, I hope your holidays are going well so far.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Ready for Broadway...

(Just so you all know, I'm still hanging in there...the giveaway will commence very shortly, maybe even this afternoon, and WOW! I have 13 entries so far just from my "boo hoo" horrible day post.)

Today should be a nice day, it's The Son's holiday pageant at school, he's a shepherd boy. He was a little upset that he didn't get to be Joseph but it turns out that the shepherds have the most "acting" to do according to his teachers. Either way, it's going to be very sweet to see the birth of Christ as reenacted by four and five year olds. It's The Son's first "real" performance and The Husband and I (former thespians ourselves) are very excited.

There's a little party for the parents after and I'll even get to do a little socializing... sounds like it should be fun. I'll let you know how it all turns out.

Isn't that costume cute? I made it all by myself with no pattern... it was like Project Runway goes biblical...I was waiting for Tim Gunn to walk into my kitchen at any moment and tell me to "make it work."

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Remember that give away I mentioned?

Well, it will be happening, just not today. I'm having a really lousy (or insert your favorite swear word here) day. I can't manage it today. I AM having it. I AM excited about it and it will be happening soon. Probably tomorrow. Or the next day. Please come back.

Hey! Let's do this...if you actually came here for the give away and you leave a comment on this post, I'll give you an extra entry. That should really make your chance good considering probably ten people read this blog daily anyway.

Either that or no one has a chance and Darlene will win. ;)

Back to regularly scheduled programming soon... thanks.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Welcome! Open House Tour 2008

Welcome everyone! Today I am participating in an open house tour courtesy of Kimba at "A Soft Place To Land". This year, I tried to utilize what I already have (other than buying a new 9' tree) and not spend too much money. I would have liked to have more natural greens to make things a little more lush but I decided to make do with what I have and not spend the extra money. I did go ahead and buy a natural wreath. All in all, it seems to have turned out pretty well. I hope you have some time to spend, it's kind of a long tour.

I tend to like a simple, full wreath so this year, I just went with the greens and a pretty bow.

I found this sled at the Goodwill store a couple months ago. Until I started blogging, I didn't even know that Goodwill had stuff other than clothing. Now that I know, I've been finding many good things there. This was only $5 and I knew it would look super cute! The wooden ice skates were inherited from my mom's collection of Christmas decorations... I'll tell you more about that in a minute.

As you come through the front door, you're greeted by our new 9 foot Christmas tree! This is our "fancy" tree . I feel a little guilty about moving to the dark side with artificial trees this year but it's SO much easier and in the long run, so much more affordable. Yes, I miss the fragrance of a real tree but this one is so beautiful that it's almost as good. The photos just don't do it (or any of the decorations) justice and as I'm going on all of your tours, I'm realizing that you are all saying the same thing about your own decorations.

A few close-ups of some of my favorite ornaments and touches. A few years ago, I managed to find a store in my neighborhood that was getting rid of beautiful ornaments after Christmas, for a fraction of the retail cost. I ended up with a huge bag for about $20, last year I didn't have a tree because of construction on our City Home so this is the first year I'm using them. They are so pretty. I was lucky to find that sale, the ornaments would have cost hundreds if I had bought them retail!

See that pretty pink ornament above, the small blue one below and the "Minnie" ornament? Those were my Dad's when he was young. We think the blue one dates back to the late 40s. Last December, we lost my mom to brain cancer which makes Christmas (and everything) really difficult but my Sister and I decided to divide up the family ornaments/decorations so that we could use them in our homes this year. Dad isn't much of a decorator and I think he was actually pleased that we were using them. It was bittersweet as we were doing the "divy-ing" up but I'm so glad that we did it because I really enjoy seeing all those special memories of my childhood and my mom. The little angel with the Kwanzaa kinara is one of my favorite ornaments, she's just a Hallmark ornament but she's SO pretty and as silly as it sounds, I enjoy finding culturally diverse ornaments.

Some more of those "sale" ornaments from 2006! Did you notice the red roses and berries? I inherited the berries from my Mom and I've been putting the roses in for years. They are artificial but from afar they look great. I used to add real baby's breath into the tree and it looked fantastic but that was always for a much smaller real tree, I imagine it would be difficult to get out of my new tree after the holidays were over and I didn't really want baby's breath "crumbs" all over my house so I stuck with roses and added the came out really pretty!

On to the family room, Here's our mantel with my Santa Claus collection. We had four fireplaces in the City House and the two that I used to decorate were large so it's been a little change figuring out what to put on this one smaller one. My Santas seem to be happy here though!

I have my Lenox snowflakes on my wreath above the mantel. They come out with a new one each year and I've been collecting them for a while. I really enjoy them and like to "feature" them in my decorating, somehow they get lost on the tree so this has been a great solution for me.

Some Santas...notice the African Santa with the lion, I love him...

My patriotic Santa is a fave too!

More decorations on our entertainment area. I have cousins that give me the most beautiful holiday items every year. The Peggy Karr plates are really special to me. I really like her style.

My snowman collection practically doubled this year because my mom used to collect them too. I have all kinds from Waterford to handmade crafty guys. I'll be keeping these out this year for the month of January and using them on the mantel.

These little Natalie Silitch guys are so cute and have been with me for years. All the little guys in front of them were my mom's. So sweet...

This big guy is one of my favorites! Remember those cousins I mentioned before? This is from my Dad's Aunt, their mom, he's a giant Waterford glass ornament and I get a little panicky about him each year until he's securely in place. The guys around him are from the same Aunt...she spoils us with beautiful things at Christmas and is the only person I know who has the full Lenox holiday set of dishes that we use every Christmas morning at's always so beautiful at their house, she's a big reason why I have so many special holiday decorations.

Here's our Family Room tree, he looks a little puny from this angle but he's actually quite pretty. I put all our "cute" and "rustic" ornaments on this tree. It was a pre-lit tree with white lights but I also added a few strands of colored lights. It turned out looking cute. Please excuse the mass of cords at the bottom. I have a four-year-old and a puppy, we're lucky the tree skirt is even close to the bottom of the tree.

I laugh every year when I pull out this paper chain. Back when I was a classroom teacher (in the early '90s) I used child labor asked my fourth grade students to help me make it. It always looks a little crunched up when I take it out of the box but somehow it ends up on the tree and looks good. See that little Snoopy with his tongue sticking out? He was my favorite ornament as a kid and has been around since the 70s!

Lastly, I'll show you my dining room's very simple. I just took my cloche and hung one of my mom's Lenox snowflakes from the top with some fishing line I then put the cloche and it's base on my cake holder (with the lid off) I put all of that on an oval mirror I have and placed the rest of the Lenox snowflakes around the cloche. I finished it off with a silver ribbon tied around the top. Sweet and simple!

Thank you so much for stopping by my house today! I'll be over for your tour soon! Can I bring The Son? He's usually very well-behaved.

If you'd like a tour of my City House decorations from the past, go here. Then you can head over to "Hooked on Houses", to check out yesterday's house tour party there. I'm actually still working on getting through all of those, but so far, it's been a great party!

Please come back tomorrow for my first ever GIVEAWAY! I am having one in honor of my 200th post! (this one!) Tomorrow will be 201 but I didn't want to do it on the same day as Kimba's party so it will start tomorrow! I sure hope to see you then!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Christmas tour of days of yore.

Hi everyone! I'm participating in a holiday open house today courtesy of "Hooked on Houses". I decided to use pictures from our City House back in 2006 (and 2005). We didn't decorate last year as we were doing renovations and yes, we're STILL doing renovations. We now live in the Country House which I will be featuring tomorrow in Kimba's Holiday Open House.

So...I bring you the City House... it was built in 1811 and is located in a historic city on a very historic street. You history buffs out there, just might be able to figure it out but that's OK, we're living somewhere else now. Incidentally, the house will be on the market soon so if there's any chance that anyone out there is interested in an old house with a brand new kitchen and some added on can find me here on this blog!

Yes, I even decorated the bathroom... doesn't everyone?

I do it now because I like it but back in the City House, I did it because every year we had an open house where people would pay money to come on the street and tour the homes, ours was the only home with a bathroom on the first level and believe it or not, people would ask to use the bathroom instead of the port-a-potties that were provided. Decorating the room, just made it easier to say, "no."

Did you catch that? The tree is in two different places! ha ha! That's because for the life of me, I couldn't find any pictures of our living room tree from 2006, other than the one of The Son at almost three sitting in front of it. I'm pretty sure 2005's tree looked much like the tree in 2006 so just use your imagination.

Thanks for coming on my tour! Tomorrow I will be giving a tour of the Country House's decorations and on Wednesday, I'll be hosting my first give away in honor of 200 posts! Actually, it will be 201 posts by then but who's counting? I'll be featuring a hand crafted item of mine for the give away, I hope you'll come back to enter.

Happy holidays everyone!