Christmas Recap

Happy New Year’s Eve, everyone! I can’t believe this year is over. I feel like every year goes by faster and faster. I hope you all had the best time over the holidays, however you celebrate. 🙂 I thought I’d share with you some of my favorite parts about this Christmas!

We had a gingerbread house contest with my boyfriend’s family and it was so much fun. Cody and I decided to come up with our own idea beforehand instead of just using the kits. We chose to do a Christmas barn so the night before, Cody made the dough and I went over early the next day so we could start baking. I thought I would be more helpful in this area but Cody ended up being better at rolling and cutting the dough so I stuck to oven duty. After I dyed the walls of the barn red, we put all the pieces on cookie sheets, covered them with saran wrap, and set off to his parents’ house.

It was pretty funny because his mom had set up kits at everyone’s station and in comes Cody with premade gingerbread ready to assemble. Needless to say, we won AND we set the bar pretty high so now I don’t know what we are going to have to think of for next year.

I forgot to take a picture after we had cleaned up our station but this is just a glimpse of what it looked like. I made the sheep out of pretzels and marshmallows and the trees from sugar cones and green frosting. It was hard but worth it in the end! From what I hear, a trophy is coming our way 🙂 If you want to take this design on next year for your contest, you can find the instructions here.

My friends and I like to do a Secret Santa exchange every year and it’s fun because you never know who you’re going to get. This year, I got my friend Levi and he had a lot of interesting things on his list. In the end, I got him throwing axes and a hammock. I think my Amazon account is probably confused why all of a sudden I’m into axes but oh well. My friend Tino was my Secret Santa and he gave me an Amazon Echo Dot. I set it up this weekend and it’s so fun. What are your tips & tricks on what to do with Alexa?

I cannot wrap to save my life (and I can’t rap either, but that’s a different story). This year, I wrapped one present and was super proud of myself and then I took on a weird-shaped box and when I eventually ripped the paper, I gave up and finished watching 8 Mile. (Yes, I was watching Eminem rap while I tried to wrap for inspiration.) My sister helped me finish and I got to write their names on the boxes. We both love choosing a wrapping paper color scheme and this was mine:

Yes, that is a small gingerbread man.

For my Christmas present, Cody spoiled me big time and got me the nicest record player ever. Not only that but he bought me really nice speakers to go with it. My records sound amazing! I ran out to Target the next day to buy a table for it because I wanted to display it. I’ve spent a few days listening to my records now and made a huge list of ones I need to get next. I need to step up my gift-giving game now!

If you look in the mirror, you can tell I’m listening to Ace of Base’s The Sign. Classic.

I got a lot of goodies for Christmas but a couple things I was super excited for was the Crazy Rich Asians trilogy by Kevin Kwan. I loved the movie so much so I’m excited to read them! My sister also got me a calligraphy set and voucher for an online class! She is my biggest supporter to keep writing so I’m excited to start that and see my handwriting improve.

How did you celebrate the holidays?
xoxo

Wrapping Paper

I had been meaning to post about my wrapping paper storage a long time ago and forgot about it and I’m finally remembering and thinking it’s a great time with the holidays right around the corner. I love some good organization and when I saw this storage system being talked about on one of my favorite blogs, Momfessionals, I had to get it for myself.

This closet is just my hallway storage closet and after my birthday last year, I saw that the organization system was on sale so I splurged. It’s a little bit pricey but I feel it’s worth every penny with how much you can customize it to what you need.

This system is from the Elfa Collection at the Container Store. It’s nice because you can really customize it to whatever you’re wanting to store. I’ve seen the wrapping paper, cleaning supplies, food pantry storage, etc. I wish I had more closets to use this in.

I chose to do the gift wrap basket at the bottom. You can even pick what color you want it to be and if you want a wire basket or mesh.

At the top, I did two baskets to hold my ribbon, bows, small boxes, and tissue paper.

I added a little pegboard and some hooks to hold all my bags and then I hung my scissors and tape for easy access so I’m always ready to wrap something right then.

This whole system was so easy to install and I did it myself with no tools. It’s just a bar that hangs on at the top of my door and the bottom. The door still easily shut and was very secure so it wasn’t banging around when you open or shut the door. Again, definitely worth the splurge. I wish I had a food pantry door in my kitchen to do this.

I thought I would also tell everyone where I love to buy my paper from. I could call myself a little bit of a wrapping paper snob and can be picky. Costco has great paper that is thick so it doesn’t tear easily. Plus, it comes in a large roll so it doesn’t run out quickly. Sometimes I don’t love that because I like to keep buying new paper. 😉 I’ve also only ever seen wrapping paper at Costco for the holidays.

My favorite paper that you can see below is from Home Goods. This is some great quality paper. It’s thick and has a little texture so it doesn’t tear as you’re trying to wrap a present. They have the cutest designs in my opinion as well. The rolls are usually about $2.99 each and you will easily spend that on a roll at Target and it probably won’t be as good of quality.

I about died over the Popsicle paper for a fun gift in the summer. Recently, I bought the rose gold dots and the black and gold dots. Those are calling Michelle’s name for her birthday present paper. It’s probably a good thing that basket on my door only hold so much because I have a hard time not buying a roll or two every time I’m at Home Goods because they always have new ones.

Has anyone else tried anything from the Elfa collection? I’m always looking for new ideas on how to organize! Here’s the link again where you can go build your own setup and see all the different options. 🙂 I hope you enjoyed this post!