Decorating the house...and date night

After Thanksgiving weekend, we kicked off our Christmas decoration party. Hah, and by "party", I mean: Point of Grace Christmas music, Eric, moi, and the lovely boys who create more havoc on a Christmas tree than a blizzard in North Dakota (boys = Oliver and Marzell of course). We actually decided not to buy/put up a Christmas tree this year. *GASP!* I know, it was a painful decision, BUT, we thought since we'll be in FL for Christmas with Mom & Dad Shilling, we would re-allocate some of the money we'd spend on a tree to outdoor lights. Though it does feel like we are missing something in our living room (and I dearly miss seeing all of my ornaments), I also love having a festive house on the outside! When the blinds are up and it's dark out, it kinda just looks like we set up our tree and forgot to bring it in...haha. I will post some pictures of my wonderful handy-man husband putting them up in the cold. All would be proud to know, I helped! I embarrassingly confess that my arms were sore for the next two days ...UMM....free weights, anyone? What are those again? To be explored...soon....*cough*. ANYway, I think I might find a way to hang up some ornaments in other places, because I can't wait until December 1, 2009 to see them all again.

Here are our stockings hanging in the fireplace. We got the fire going and with the carols playing in the background, it was such a cozy evening. My stocking was hand-embroidered/made by Debbie, my dearest Mom-in-law. Eric's stocking was made a long time ago, by his Grandmother...Debbie's Mom. Both stockings are both very special to us and make a favorite tradition even more meaningful.

Silly Oliver and Marzell already fighting over who gets to dress up as Santa this year...
O: "It was your turn last year! It's MY turn!"
M: "But I LOOK more like Santa with my white fur! You look like a phony, everyone knows a black cat from Santa!"
O: "Let the hat go or I'll eat all your food tonight! And steal all the good sleeping places!"...

Then, if watching cats play with a Santa hat (and making up a pretend dialogue) wasn't entertaining enough, I made my obliging husband put it on for kicks. Doesn't he look sweet.

It was a very fun night and now our house is ready for holiday cheer. Tomorrow I decided to start my Christmas cookie baking and I cannot wait!! I am still mulling over which recipe to start with: Molasses Spice? Toffee bits? Traditional Spritz (always a fave of mine)? Adorable sugar cut-outs? Linzer? Thumbprints? And that is me trying to narrow it down! Guess I'll just have to make them all and report back! :)

Here's us on our date night last week: We went somewhere we had a coupon to a little local place (I LOVE that coupon book and trying local restaurants!) and though it was pretty good, but I don't think we'll go again. The food was tasty, but my hunny didn't quite leave with his belly full (which, in their defense, can be a challenge some days...especially now that he is running his already ridiculous metabolism up with indoor soccer season in full swing!) We had fun, though, just walking around downtown, catching up, and for me: no dishes! ;) We don't usually remember to snap evidence of our date nights, but we are still on a 'new camera high'.

AlSO? I got to go to my FAVORITE bakery in Greensboro (Simple Kneads) while we were walking around and bought some day-old wheat bread for 1/2 price (loved it) and a deliciously sinful Fig and Walnut Bar. There are no pictures of this, because, well, I was focused on something else...aka stuffing my mouth. Hmmm, good times.


johnandkatie said...

Bets-The older we get the more I realize that we have in common. I couldn't think of a more fun way to decorate for Christmas and your fire place looks so cozy. I have to try that rice crispy recipe!!! YUM.
I wish we could be together more often. I sure miss you! Love you, Katie

The Shillings said...

Wish we could be together to decorate/celebrate Christmas this year (correction: every year!!) I am missing you like crazy this year - it is harder than I thought it would be.
The rice crispy recipe idea came from when you used to slather the top with peanut butter, which I loved, and I thought, what would happen if I put it IN the gooey marshmallows and it worked! yummy.
Love you lots! Bets