Happy Friday from the front porch, sweet friends! Thanks so much for being here and for making us a part of your day.
It’s crazy to think there are only 9 days until Christmas!
How are you feeling?
I feel like I should be wearing a t-shirt that says, “I survived the wildest week of the entire year!” 🤣
On the same weekend every December, we drive to the farm to have Christmas with my extended family. Then we drive down to watch my niece dance in her winter recital. The day after the dance recital we drive back down to celebrate my sister’s birthday. Then we celebrate my late grandmother’s birthday midweek with dinner and ice cream, then ride around looking at all the Christmas light displays.
Tomorrow we’re going to pick up one of the littles for a special one-on-one Christmas date.
It’s nearly 7 days of non-stop holiday engagements and an extra 15 hours of driving.
I am totally exhausted in a “my heart is full…my abs hurt from laughing…I can’t eat another cookie…what city are we supposed to be in today” kind of way!
I’m hoping to carve out some time to totally chill on Sunday and relax a bit.
Long naps, cozy sweats, a fire in the fireplace, asking Alexa to play “Christmas Jazz or Holiday Favorites,” takeout, old Christmas movies, cups of cocoa with gobs of marshmallows, and generous bowls of popcorn sound like the perfect way to recharge and recoup some holiday cheer.
Whatever you have planned I hope your weekend is filled with your heart’s desire.
A Few Of Our Favorite Things From Around the Web…
Inspired by Charm always puts together the most magical holiday decorations. I loved his “same but different” take on decorating this year. Especially, his Nature Inspired Christmas Tree With Handmade Decorations. It’s really pretty!
I would never have thought to pair rich browns with rusty red for Christmas but this Christmas Home Snapshot is so amazing it completely changed my mind.
This dry bar turned reading nook is still one of my all-time favorite makeovers.
This post, Christmas in Quebec: The Next Best Thing to Europe from Town and Country Living was filled with so many beautiful images.
If you love red, plaid, or equestrian touches in your home you’ll love this home tour. It’s such a classic!
Speaking of classics, have you seen my sweet friend Michelle’s porch yet? It’s fabulous
I pinned so many things from this beautiful blue and white dining room Including the tablescape, entry, and tree!
My friend Rachel shared a tour of her beautiful greenhouse all dressed up for the holidays.
Jen shared the cutest hot cocoa bar complete with printable tags you can use all winter!
Tanya shared a super creative paper gingerbread garland that I’ve got on my list to try.
Content Warning: The loss of a child
Finally, I really appreciated this post and all the comments on grief. Some of you may know my Mom lost both of her parents about 36 hours apart several years ago. Navigating grief during special occasions and the holiday season has been a lot harder than most people ever talk about. This post helped me realize it doesn’t matter how long someone has been gone it’s still important to include them any time you’re making memories. For the longest time, we were scared to talk about our grandparents in front of my Mom because we didn’t want to upset her. But now we understand it brings her comfort to know they were lavishly loved and have not been forgotten.
Words to Live By…
Fourth Quarter Books of the Month and Devotional…
(Amazon affiliate links have been provided for your convenience. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Any sales made through such links will support us with a small commission at no extra cost to you. You can read our full disclosure policy here)
- October: Celebrating Home by James T Farmer, III (Loved this book and reference it often for tablescape inspiration)
- November: How to Manage Your Home Without Losing Your Mind by Dana K White (this book has relatable tips and helped me reframe my mindset around clutter) OR How to Keep House While Drowning by KC Davis (I haven’t read this one but several of you said it helped you set realistic expectations for the season of life you’re in right now which warmed my heart to hear)
- December: The Power of One More by Ed Mylett (I haven’t had a second to touch this one yet! I probably won’t finish it this month but I’m hoping to start it this weekend)
- Devotion: Courageous Kindness by (in)courage (Such a great way to start or end the day)
On the Menu this Week…
- 12/17 Saturday: Baked Garlic Parmesan Chicken with Loaded Baked Potato Casserole and Roasted Veggies
- 12/18 Sunday: Christmas Fettuccine or Three Cheese Turkey Manicotti
- 12/19 Monday: Soy Ginger Salmon with Asian Roasted Carrots and Broccoli
- 12/20 Tuesday: Enchiladas with Southwest Salad
- 12/21 Wednesday: Rosemary Chicken Bacon and Avocado Salad
- 12/22 Thursday: Winter Minestrone with Garlic Bruschetta
- 12/23 Friday: Christmas Charcuterie Board
- 12/24 Saturday: 75 Christmas Eve Dinner Ideas from Fancy to No-Fuss
- 12/25 Sunday: Christmas Menu Ideas and Recipes (including apps and desserts)
- 60 Creative Christmas Ideas That Will Steal The Show
- 15 Make Ahead Christmas Breakfast Ideas
Sweet Treats to Try This Week…
Neutral Inspired Finds We Spotted Online at Amazon and Target This Week…
(Amazon and Target affiliate links have been provided for your convenience. As an Amazon and Impact Media Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Any sales made through such links will support us with a small commission at no extra cost to you. You can read our full disclosure policy here)
If You’ve Missed Anything from the Blog Recently or the Archives, Here’s a Peek At What We’ve Been Up To…
Sweet Shop-Themed Holiday Home Tour (this year’s holiday home tour)
Our Best Holiday Gift Guide (in case you need last-minute gift ideas)
December Bucket List…
- Observe Advent
- Celebrate December Birthdays and Anniversaries
- Donate to the Sweater Drive
- Hang a Stocking for Piper
- Attend Dance and Piano Recitals and Cheer on The Littles
- Sip Cocoa at The Lights Festival
- Christmas Lunch with Extended Family at The Farm
- Make Christmas Fettuccine and Watch The Holiday
- Celebrate Christmas with The Pod at Bliss Barracks
- Leave Cookies and Milk for Santa and Veggies for the Reindeer
- Enjoy Holiday Vacation
- Set Goals, Dreams, and Intentions for 2023
- Create a Vision Board for 2023
- Celebrate New Year’s Eve and Midnight Gift Exchange
- Read the Book of the Month
- Keep Sundays Sacred
December Simplified and Organized Home Challenge…
Focus of the Month: Holiday Planning & Preparing for the New Year
- 12/03 – Mail Christmas Packages
- 12/10 – Finalize Christmas Menu & Grocery List
- 12/17 – Purchase New Planner & Set Goals for the New Year
- 12/26 – Organize Holiday Storage Items
TCG Housekeeping Notes, Dates to Remember, and Upcoming Posts…
- 12/17 Last Shipping Deadline for Christmas Ground Delivery
- 12/17 National Wreaths Across America Day
- 12/18 Fourth Week of Advent: Joy
- 12/18 Hannukah Begins
- 12/24 Christmas Eve
- 12/25 Christmas Day
- 12/26 Boxing Day
- 12/26 Hannukah Ends
- 12/26 Kwanzaa Begins
- 12/31 New Year’s Eve
As always, we appreciate you more than you could ever know, and we hope your weekend is peace-filled and relaxing. We can’t wait to share even more with you next week!