Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Let's wrap up the year...

Greeting from Baton Rouge! Hubby and I are currently on our way to Florida from Texas, to begin the house hunting process before our move.
This year was a crazy one to say the least. A deployment, a European rendezvous, friends weddings and engagements, anniversaries and babies! It has a been a great year in our little family. 
This next year will be equally as crazy and I think as amazing as the last. I cannot wait to see what is in store for us just around the midnight hour. 
Happy New Year everybody! Make it a night to remember! 

Friday, December 20, 2013

5 on Friday {9}

The Christmas week is almost upon us. I can smell the tamales now. Yum. To commemorate this being my first holiday season blogging, this post is about one thing only: our Virginia Christmas. As you may remember from my last entry, this is the second Christmas Hubby and I are spending together in the States. I wanted this one to be really special, so I completely decked out the house, got him some pretty decent gifts and now it's vacation time.

Our tree is covered in ornaments from our childhoods
These are our Kindergarten ornaments 
My favorite Target wrapping paper. I wish I had bought it in bulk
The mantle is still my favorite piece
My chalkboard frame redo. I think it turned out pretty nice.
Blue ornaments are my decorating theme this year
All of the handrails are covered in garland! 
And of course we cannot forget the most festive person that lives in this house. 
Luna Mae!

Yes, that is a puppy Christmas dress
Why? Why not!
And an ugly sweater for the road! 
Happy Early Christmas everyone!

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

It's almost here...

8 Days till Christmas. 

Are you done with your shopping yet? No? No worries, neither am I. I am really good at getting involved late in the game. You know that lady that runs around the mall like a banshee, bags falling off of her arms on Christmas Eve? Yeah, that's me. And you know what, I am damn proud of it. I find some really good last minute deals that way. So let the procrastination flow people! Don't worry, we still have a week until the moment of gifting truth :)

Sunday, December 15, 2013

The Holly Jolly Holiday Tag

It's a Tag Party. Learn a little more about me and all that my crazy family does during the holiday season. These Tags are some of the best ways to learn a bit more about the guy or gal behind the blog. So here's all of our Holiday Happiness for yall.

1. Favorite Christmas Movie?
National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation. Always has been, always will be! Classic. 

2. Are you on the Naughty List or the Nice List? 
Hopefully on the Nice List but I'm not putting my money on it. 

3. Show us an embarrassing Christmas Card photo!
I don't have one. We never did cards then I was little, otherwise, oh man, there would be some good ones floating around out there. But do you wanna see what is possibly the best Christmas Card ever?

Kenny is a pilot with Hubby. His sister took this picture when they were flying around the area a while back and she turned it into the best Christmas card I have ever seen in my entire life. It's too good. Only Kenny.  

4. Have you ever had a White Christmas?
Yes I have! It was a magical Christmas. Christmas Eve 2004 was one I will remember for the rest of my life. We got over 5 inches of snow that night. It was only the second time in history that Corpus had a White Christmas. It was pretty funny waking up the next morning and seeing everyone trying to make snowmen in their front yards. We had no idea that you had to roll the snow. lol. And only a few people had the right kind of outdoor equipment for playing in the snow. There were lots of surfboards, inflatable pool toys, boogie boards and water skis being used to zip down hillsides. It was dreamy.   

5. Where do you usually spend the holidays?
We try our hardest to spend the holidays with family. My side in Texas or Hubby's side in Arizona. Either one. It only feels like the holidays when we have lots of family around. 

6. Play or sing your favorite Christmas song!

All I Want For Christmas Is Yo by Olivia Olson on Grooveshark

7. Do you open any presents on Christmas Eve?
Yes I do. Since my parents are divorced, my sister and I spend Christmas Eve with our Dad and his side of the family. My grandmother, aunts, uncles and cousins all get together at someone's house (it changes every year almost) and spend our Christmas Eve with each other. I love it.

8. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer?

Of course I can, I just have to sing it in my head. "You know Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and Vixen, Comet and Cupid and Donner and Blitzen." And of course you can't forget that red-nosed lead guy Rudolph.

9. What holiday tradition are you looking forwards to the most this year?

I am trying to make a new one by spending it with my husband. This will only be our second one together with family since we got married four years ago. It's par for the course for military standards. But we have been pretty lucky so far, I even had the opportunity to spend last Christmas with him on deployment! I hope we can keep this tradition going for a few more years before I loose him to holiday deployments again.

10. Is your tree real or fake?
It's fake. It has to be. Otherwise we would come back home to a very, very dry dead tree. I do miss the smell of a fresh tree though, Maybe I'll get some of those scent sticks you can hang on the tree to make it smell real.

11. Hands down, what is your all-time favorite holiday food and sweet treat?
My grandma Mona's pan de polvo and tamales. You have not lived until you have had a Mexican Christmas :) Tamales are the ultimate holiday food in my neck of the woods. Mmmm. And to finish them off with pan de polvo (it's like a dry shortbread cookie) oh man, my mouth is watering just thinking about them. We need to hit the road soon! 

12. Be honest; Do you like giving or receiving gifts more?
I love giving a gift that I put lots of thought and time into. Nothing is better then seeing the look on their face when it is exactly  what they wanted or something that they did not expect to get. I love that feeling of "Yes, I did it." But don't get me wrong, when someone does that for me I am ecstatic and then I like receiving them more. lol. 

13. Show us your tackiest attire (ex: The Ugly Sweater)
You see that sweater my friend Maggie is wearing. It's mine! It even has shoulder pads! But do you want to see the best tacky sweater?
That's Nick. His sweater features an opening for his iPhone to be the live action fire to his fireplace. Yeah. It's a good one. 

14. What would be your dream place to visit  for the holiday season?
Paris, France. Joyeux Noel! 

15. Does your family have a special holiday recipe you like to help make?
I don't usually participate in the making of the goodies since I am consistently the last one to arrive home for the festivities. I do wish I could help in the making of the sweets, I would be the best X-mas Treat taste tester ever.

16. Are you a pro-present wrapper or do you fail miserably?
Oh I am a Pro. Pro.

17. Most memorable holiday moment?
Spending last Christmas in Italy is one that I will never forget. 
The Colosseum 
The Spanish Steps in Rome
Shopping in Naples
18. What made you realize the truth about Santa?
When I realized that Santa and my Mom have the exact same handwriting. Dead giveaway parents, dead giveaway. I think me and my sister Katie found out around the same time, but we had to keep a lid on it for the two youngest sisters. I didn't really mind though, I felt like I was in on it with the adults. I loved that part.

19. Do you make New Years Resolutions? Do you stick with them?
Nope. I don't make resolutions because I know I will not stick with them. It's just not in me. I have terrible self discipline. 

20. What makes the holidays special for you?
When I get to spend them with friends and family that I don't get to see often. It just makes me feel at peace when I an surrounded by people that I love. This Navy life that we have is not an easy one for that reason. We have to leave the people that we love the most and possibly never live close to them again. Spending the holidays with them, just makes everything so much more special. This will be Hubby's first Christmas with my family in Texas. I want to make it as special as possible. I hope he loves it.  

So there you go! Now you know a little bit more about me and what I love about this time of year. If you want to participate, do it. I tag you! Just post a link to your answers in my comments so I can read 'em. If you don't blog, put some of your answers right into a comment! It doesn't matter how you do it, you can participate in any way: tweet, instagram, email, anything! Don't forget to link back to me @amodernnavywife :) Have fun answering and Happy Holidays everyone! 

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Can I refill your eggnog Eddie?

Let's keep these Christmas themed posts rolling shall we! 
Yesterday's was all about creating some holiday flair without breaking your budget. Today's is all about helping spread holiday cheer with your friends and family that appreciate a great holiday tradition: Drinking with holiday flair!  

Oh yes. It is time for one of the greatest of drinking games. "Joy to the 'Wold": The Christmas Vacation Drinking Game. I found this game in the middle of summer on Pinterest. You can find anything on that site. It is magic. So anyway, a gal posted on her blog, Little Baby Garvin, this game that her and her husband made up in college. And I truly believe that they created a Christmas tradition. It could very well only be played by college students and people in their early twenties but you know what; That's pretty freakin' awesome! It is a riot, an amazing way to kick off this time of year. Just listen to the ground rules and what you'll need to play:

You need - an excessive amount of beer (of course), a Santa hat and a single shot of your choice, preferably a lime flavored Jello shot topped with cat food. 

How can you not want to play a game that starts out those requirements!? Then the drinking cues are even better:

Drink when - Ellen calls Clark "Sparky", The swimming pool is referenced, someone is wearing an ugly sweater, Christmas music!

Ahh, I can't wait to have people over and we can start a round of this game. It will be hilarious and no doubt there will be hysterical photos taken during the two hour festival of holiday drunkenness. For the complete set of rules and extra credit opportunities (trust me you want to read those) click here. To finish off in the festive Vacation spirit I have compiled a selection of pictures from some of my favorite scenes and just other hilariousness. Hopefully it puts you in the Vacation/Drinking spirit. Enjoy! 

And the piece de resistance...

I might have to buy this. 

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Dollar Store Wreath Makeover

So I finally finished the adornment of holiday cheer around my house. I.E., it looks like Christmas threw up all over the place and I love it. A few entries back I wrote about how I had found my holiday inspiration for the outside of the house. See. Oh I love that house. But sadly I do not have the resources to purchase such gorgeous wreaths as those, so what do we do when we can't afford the good stuff. We go to the dollar store and we make it! So let's kick off this high crafting season with a step-by-step to getting 6 nice, full wreaths for a grand total of $14.

I bought all of my supplies for $1 a piece and here is all you need.

- 6 wreaths
- 2 garlands
- 6 pre-made ribbons
   And that is it. 

Before we begin, I recommend scrolling to the bottom and hitting play on the music to really get into the holiday crafting mood. Ready? Okay, lets get to it!   

Start off with the wreath. Yuck. It kind of looks mangy, but that's okay it is only temporary.

Spread all of the branches away from the center wire. 

Here is what it looks like when you're finished.  

Take a garland and wrap it around the center wire. Tie it in place with the surrounding branches. 

Keep wrapping the garland around the center wire, going in between the branches so as to make it as full as possible.

You should not be able to see the center wire anymore, just the garland and branches. 

Next, take the branches and fold them inward. 

Go all around the wreath repeating this step until all of the branches are folded in and even. 

Cut the excess garland when you are all done.

Separate a section of branches for the ribbon to go.  

Attach the ribbon to the center wire with the ties. 

If you want to, you can add another tie for some extra wind insurance. I always save my ties from bread, so they came in pretty handy. 

And you're done. Ta Da!

Display them in windows like I did, in front of mirrors or on a door. They are so cheap, you can personalize one for everyone in your home. Make one for every bedroom, bathroom or closet door. I hope you like the tutorial. Let me know how your wreaths turn out. Don't forget to tag me in your pictures! @amodernnavywife