Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Christmas Boxes

Over the years I've found some pretty Christmas boxes here and there. This year, I seemed to hit the mother load at Home Sense. I literally filled my cart with them, but at $2.99-7.99 for these beautiful boxes, I couldn't resist. Here are a few of the ones I picked out:

I use them to put gifts in, tied with a ribbon and gift tag, and they make a pretty display under the tree. I then use them after Christmas to store our ornaments in.

I selfishly use them mostly for our immediate family so I can reuse them year after year, but if you have a special friend or family member whom would cherish these boxes as much as their gift, then wouldn't it be a special way to present their gift?

While I still love a beautifully wrapped gift, these boxes make a lovely compliment to your wrapping needs!

Do you use gift boxes, or good ole wrap and gift bags?

I've been spending the past few days baking up a storm.  I'm trying to get it all done in time for a large Christmas/housewarming party we're hosting at our house this Saturday. 

Monday, November 28, 2011

Christmas in the Sunroom

I had planned to share my kitchen and dining room space next, but due to a frenzy of baking, it's not quite ready for it's photo op yet =)

I kept the sunroom quite simple, adding in a few festive touches here and there:

I love my new pillows from Dear Lillie.

A very simple mantel:

Linking to my Favorite Parties!


I hope to be back soon with our Kitchen and Dining room tours!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

The Best Rum Ball Recipe Ever!

I've tried many a Rum Ball recipe in the past, with mixed success. This year, I tried a recipe that my quilting teacher gave me....and my.oh.my. YUM!

Image: Pinterest
I didn't take photos while I made them, as I wasn't sure how they'd turn out, but I would still like to share this recipe with you. A word of warning: They are easy to make, but a bit time consuming, and the cost of the ingredients will be more than your average cookie. It is well worth it, though, trust me!

Without further ado:


12 oz semi sweet chocolate chips, melted
1/2 cup almond paste
1 cup sour cream
pinch salt
8 cups finely crushed Mr. Christie Vanilla wafer cookies (I used the 'Nilla' vanilla cookies from Mr. Christie)
3 cups icing sugar
1.5 cups melted butter
2/3 cup cocoa
1.5 cups white rum
2 cups almonds (or pecans), crushed finely
chocolate sprinkles (or icing sugar to coat finished balls)

Combine ingredients 1-4.  Cream well and set aside.  In separate bowl, combine wafers and rest of ingredients except choc. sprinkles.  Mix until it holds shape.  Add 1st mixture and knead until soft. Refrigerate until firm enough to form balls, yet soft enough to pick up sprinkles. After making balls, refrigerate overnight.  Allow 2 weeks to mature (preferably in fridge, but I place mine in the freezer and they taste wonderful too).  Freezes well.  Makes 9-10 dozen.

Let me know if you try this recipe and what you think!  Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Master Bedroom Reveal

When we first moved into our new home, I was at a loss for how to decorate the Master Bedroom.  You can read about my ideas for our new feminine Master here.  However, this large, square, boring room was just not speaking to me.  We started with just an armoire, handed down to me by my Mother, and our bed, with no bed frame.  Once we rearranged the furniture we did have, this room really started to come together! It's amazing how just a change in layout can change the entire feel of the space!

We are now 90% complete.  We just need a chest for my husband's bedside table, some crown molding and a new ceiling fixture.  Here is where we are at so far:

The bedside table and headboard are Kijiji finds, which you can read about here and here. The bench at the end of the bed was a wedding gift.  It is craftsman style, upholstered with William Morris fabric, from Charles Rupert and Co (a very cool store in Victoria, B.C.!).

The wall colour is Monroe Bisque from Benjamin Moore.  It's a very nice, neutral yet warm cream.

We found all the smaller prints from an antique dealer who was selling off his collection as he was moving to Europe.  The frames are from Michael's.

I love these pastoral scenes that flank the armoire. All the pictures are original engravings circa late 1800's.

More equestrian themed prints.

You can read about our Pottery Barn bedding here.  I adore the $2 lights on the nightstand (a garage sale score).

You can read about the larger prints here, and the small needlepoint chair here.  I'm looking for something to go above the picture in between the two windows.  I'm thinking small mounted antlers, or perhaps a small mirror??  I'll know it when I see it =)

I spent weeks sewing these curtains.  It was so much more work than I thought, but I love how they turned out!  The fabric is Bosporus Flax, ordered from Online Fabric Stores.  It was a great price, and came very quickly after I ordered it.  I was nervous about having to pay huge duty fees, but only had to pay $15 of federal GST tax on top of the price.  It's always a bit risky ordering from the US to Canada.  I've been hit with huge duty, fees, and shipping before! For all you Canadians out there, I found the key is to request USPS, NOT UPS.  Canada Post and USPS have a deal where they will take care of eachothers duty and brokerage fees.  However, if you order from UPS, unless the item you ordered is listed under the free trade agreement, you may get a shocker when your package is delivered and they won't give it to you until you pay a huge fee (usually more than you paid for the item!). 

We love our new Master Bedroom!  It's just the right amount of feminine and pretty that I was looking for!

Linking to my Favorite Parties!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Our Christmas Great Room

Welcome to our home....this is what you'll see upon entering the front door:

The entry is simply decorated, with sleigh bells on our front door, and festive berries and bobbles in the umbrella stand:

You then enter into the Great Room:

Just through the french doors, flanking the fireplace, is the Sunroom:

Our next project is painting and decorating the stairway.  You can see it just to the right on this next picture:

I love our antique armoire.  So glad we went with this option!  You can read more about the armoire here.

I'm still looking for a new mirror for above the fireplace.  This one is far too small, but I need something fabulous, so I'd rather wait to find the perfect one, than to settle, so my old one will have to do for now!

I'll be sharing more about our Christmas tree, in more detail, soon!

Can you spot the special 'present' under the tree.  She blends in well, so it is tricky to see her.  Hint: She's black and orange, has green eyes and loves to purr =)

The coffee table is simply decorated with Paperwhites, just starting to grow, candles and chestnuts.

I hope you enjoyed your look around!  Next on the Christmas tour is our kitchen and dining room.

Linking to my Favorite Parties!


Thursday, November 17, 2011

Our Christmas Porch

Welcome to our home. Come on in....there's plenty of Christmas cheer inside!

Here to greet you, is an antique horse feed sack propped on our bench. I originally wanted to hang it on our door, but the style of our door makes it tricky to hang a wreath or other decor, so I figured the next best spot is on this bench. It is also very heavy (metal), and the sack part inside tends to fall through the bottom when hung, so this is the best solution.

Our urn is filled with Cedar and Pine boughs and plenty of Christmas sparkle.

Next up: Our Great Room and Front entry. I hope you'll stop by for a visit!

Linking to my Favorite Parties!