Home for Christmas – Part I

Today I’m showing you a little bit of what I’ve been up to around my house. There is still a lot to be done, but with two little ones and a dog I have to work when I can and be ready to break up a toy dispute or clean up a spill at a moments notice. I do NOT spend a lot of money on Christmas decorations. Most of mine are actually second hand from relatives or thrifted. I see things I want all the time like, practically everything at Target every year, but I can’t justify spending the money on something I’m going to have out for a month or two.

We’ll start with the front door. One of the things I love most about my house is the double doors. There’s just something about them that feels very welcoming to me and they were begging for matching wreaths.

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Look closely and you can see a little face peeking out like, Mommy, stop being a creeper. My entry rug is actually two. I bought one from Home Goods and it looked kind of small and sad so I went back and luckily there was one more left so I snagged it. I think it’s better than trying to find an outdoor runner in a pattern you actually like.

The topiary trees and black urns are a new purchase and they will be living there year round. My wreaths are the skimpy $3 ones from Home Depot but when fluffed I think they look just right. I hung them using 3M shower hooks and added the bows with some burlap scraps I had. The garland is actually four of the basic el-cheapo ones twisted together so they would look full enough to be seen from the street.

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I continued the simple green theme in the foyer. I’m not really one for a lot of STUFF hanging all over the place. I actually purchased this extra wide garland last year at Goodwill (brand new still in the package!) and magically it was the perfect length. I think the grand total was $4 or something like that.

My entry table is all silver, which is new for me this year because I tend to mix silver and gold but I thought this would look nice with my new paint and wall sconce.

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My girls added the little snowflake tea lights and the Eucalyptus is left over from a centerpiece I did for a dinner party over the weekend. You can get large bunches of it at Trader Joe’s for $2.99 and it smells fresh and lasts for weeks. The little lamp on the floor is actually another Goodwill find that I turned into a little DIY project. I’ll probably do a separate post for that.

Also, here’s a reminder of the paint color before. It’s the quintessential tuscan goldish Johnson County beige:

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This is how it looks now, repainted in Behr’s Poetic Light:

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So fresh and so clean, clean. We saved money by doing the bulk of it ourselves and then hiring a professional to come in and finish up what we couldn’t. We also updated a sconce, getting rid of what my husband and I refered to as the Boob light.

Before:

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After:

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Last year I really didn’t change anything in our main sitting room, but if I’ve learned one thing from looking at all the fabulous blogger home tours I follow, it’s that small changes add up to a whole new feel.

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Only the Nativity scene here is really a “Christmas” decoration, but when you put it all together it feels very understated but festive to me.

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On this shelf, all I did was add the little nativity scene, the stocking and switch out my normal candles for red.

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Since it TIS the season to entertain, I moved this pedestal table from our dining room into our sitting room and added the tray to make it into a makeshift bar cart.

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As you can see, the tree (also a thrift store find!) has nothing but lights on it so far. Hopefully that will get done this week and I can show you the hearth room, kitchen and dining room.

Moral of the story is, before you pay full price for decorations, check out Goodwill and ask your Mom or Mother-In-Law. They probably have some gems stashed away!

If anyone is looking to get me some new decor, I desperately want these pillows:

Vacation Pillows

 

MKM Style: Home Life

Happy Throwback Thursday! I thought I would give a quick update on my home decor now that I am settling into my new house with a little throwback to the “before” pictures. It was already beautiful when we saw it staged from the previous owners, but I’ve had a great time coming up with my own style. For me, home decor is an ongoing process. I’m always changing things around, moving furniture, trying different hangings on the wall (I get it from my mom) so I never really feel like a room is “done” but here are a few my favorite areas so far.

Foyer Before:

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Foyer Now:

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I’ve always loved the idea of having a little table in the entryway for flowers and there is so much space here that I can actually do it without fear of a child running through and knocking it over! The table and rug are both from Home Goods. Obviously there is potential here to do much more…send me ideas!

 

Hearth Room Before:

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Hearth Room Now:

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The painting over the mantel is one of my most prized possessions. It was a wedding gift from my parents and it was done by an artist, Nancy Milano, who knew me as a child but hadn’t seen me in years. They just said, paint something for Emily and this is what she came up with. It stuns me how reflective it is of my taste and aesthetic. It could not be more perfect. The rug is from good old Target and the bench is from Home Goods.

Formal Living Room Before:

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Formal Living Room Now:

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My husband didn’t really have any input on this room whatsoever, which is why it’s light and bright. He tends to like darker colors and more traditionally masculine materials like leather so we compromise in other areas of the house, but this room really reflects my personal aesthetic more than any other. If I have a quiet moment I like to sit here with a glass of champagne or a cup of tea and look out at our view of the trees and stream in the backyard. Maybe it’s the fact that I usually only sit here when my kids are sleeping, but I find it very peaceful.

 

 

Hope you enjoyed the little #tbt tour!