Friday, November 27, 2009

Happy Holidays to all of you who follow Teresa’s Christmas blog. She wanted me to “guest blog” and let you know a little bit about one of her elves. I have self-appointed myself as the “HEWIC” or the head elf that’s in charge. But after I did a little research on elves, I found a new elf name for myself: “Shinny Upatree”, (the oldest friend of Santa) because that’s what I’ve been doing a lot of lately.
I’ve helped Teresa for many years with her customer database and marketing for her basket business. But it wasn’t until I stopped working full-time that I was able to help her with her tree decorating.
It’s a perfect fit for me. I love, love, love Christmas. Always have and always will. My dad reminded me of the old video he has of me placing one icicle at a time on our tree when I was growing up. So now I realize my OCD was giving me fits then. That’s my only problem trying to decorate. I get into a zone and sometimes take way too long to make something look just right. Okay, so I’m a perfectionist too. Probably many other things if I went into therapy. I think I’m doing a little better with it this year, but Teresa knows she has permission to just shout “OCD” and I know to quickly move on to the next thing. And then I watch Teresa tie bows with her eyes closed and make anything look spectacular in half the time it takes me. But I’m still learning every day.
We have made some great memories for this tree season and who knows what’s to come. Sometimes I can’t believe the things that happen to us. Fully decorated tree falling, check. Haunted house, check. Overflowing toilet, check. Lots of dogs and cats, check. Glitter, glitter and more glitter, check. Plenty of happy and joyful people after we decorate their homes, check, check, check.
Last year I bought a new tree after Christmas and it was so big for my room all the furniture had to be rearranged this year. Even the piano had to be moved which didn’t make my husband very happy. This is the first time I can remember the tree was up before Thanksgiving. So now I have done another tree on my back porch. I’ll have to take a picture and post later. And yes, there is a tree behind me in my office that I started to decorate this afternoon. Enough!!!!
On a personal note, I have been married to my sweetie for 36 years. Our anniversary is next week on Dec. 1st. We have three married sons and five grandchildren with another one due in May. And yes, they all have spectacular trees! Even the little ones.
So thanks to all of you who take time to keep up with what we’re doing. Definitely check back because I’m sure there will be many more adventures ahead. Maybe I need to get more life insurance, hmmmm.

Below are some of Terri's creations.....A Lady Bug tree! She handpainted some of the ornaments.
NOW FOR THE WINNERS OF THE GIVEAWAYS!!! I finally got a cute little man to come by and draw for me .....none other than Mr. Jack....Mickey really wants to hold his hand....notice his mini recliner like Pop's..Surely Mickey can see that Wow Wow Wubsie is on.

The Holiday CD goes to Jeanne at Jeannie's Happy World !
The Holiday Surprise Package goes to Judy at Just a Little Something For You
Please send me your name and address and those packages will be on the way. If you missed the last post, it tells the stories of some special families. Tomorrow we start the last few weeks of the decorating season. Most of the families this week have had the same day for years.
I will post some fabulous homes and trees this next week...and actually a LIVE tree! I just finished a new MICKEY MOUSE tree at my house that is almost ready to show, plus I got motivated late last night and did another fun tree in my family room...Stay tuned for another giveaway next week.....
This is the SEASON of GIVING and there is nothing I love more.


Wednesday, November 25, 2009


The houses we decorated on Monday and Tuesday of this week could not have come at a better time for a THANKSGIVING post. Their homes overflow with thanksgiving, with an appreciation for life that probably only comes in situations they have been through. I don't want to tell their stories, but am going to share the short version and what I see in their lives. Both live in ABSOLUTELY beautiful homes, both of them have a house full of kids!
Both families have experienced some really hard days and both have witnessed great miracles in their lives (and I do have their permission to shout God's faithfulness)!

The first home is a family I have known for twenty years. The first house I ever did when starting the the tree decorating business, was decorating the parents home of the husband in this home...you might have to read that twice. That's a long sentence and it was many, many moons ago. I remember when this couple married probably 15 or 16 years ago. I may be off a year or so...but it sure makes me feel old.
I remember when they wanted babies and and I vividly remember when they lost four babies. I really want this to encourage all the readers I have that are suffering with fertility problems. That was the story in this home. I remember how sad I felt ever time I heard they had lost another baby and then twins. They desperately wanted a house full of little ones...Five year ago they were able to adopt a little man. He was so loved and really rocked their world...and then a few days after I decorated their home 2 years ago, a little girl came along! The tiniest little bundle of joy. Another Christmas miracle!
Fast forward to a few weeks ago, I got an email late one night telling me they had just brought another beautiful little baby girl home from the hospital. Their home is now overflowing with little ones. When they talk about the miracle of the adoptions of all three, their gratitude is so apparent. As I was leaving this week, the Mom was holding this sweet newborn and said to me again...
"These children are miracles and answers to prayer"! This year they celebrate Thanksgiving very GRATEFUL!

Click to enlarge

The tree is one we change up every year and this year she wanted to give it a heavy GREEN touch. Last year we did it in PINK and SILVER!

We spent two days at this next house. Unlike the other family, I have only known this family for 2 years. It is a home that is full of KIDS, FUN and lots of LOVE. The Mom at this home is MULTI-TALENTED! That would be putting it mildly. She designed this home and over several years built it. She is a DOCTOR ( a pediatrician which so fits her) ! She is SUPER MOM to four great kids, 2 boys and 2 girls. She is a wife to a doctor. She is a daughter to aging parents! She is one of the most genuine and warm people I have ever met and I am so thankful to call her my friend. But just a few years ago, life suddenly took a scary turn when she was diagnosed with cancer. Her baby was very young. She went through all the yuk treatment and today she is caner free and totally well. Her zest and appreciation for life just radiates from her. She is one of those people you just want to BE AROUND! And I almost did not meet her...Last December, after I was finished decorating, had put everything away for another year, all my help was home doing their own stuff when I got a call from one of my long time clients that someone really needed help. They had just moved into a new home and needed help getting their holiday decorations up. I first said NO! I thought about it all that night. The next day I called to see if one of my elves could work another day, still not very excited about getting the scissors and ribbon out again. Long story short, I said OK, we would see if we could help, never dreaming we were about to meet one of the sweetest and FUN gals ever. We met a lady that loved life, appreciated every little thing and had a glow that I rarely see in people. We ended up spending two full days with the family. As I drove out of their neighborhood, I had a new appreciation for life and for health. I had made a new friend.. That's one of the great PERKS to my job!
One day I would love to share pictures of their entire house.. NO detail was overlooked and it is AMAZING! But for now, here are some glimpses of their Christmas trees ..We do a true 12 foot Southern Living tree in the family room and then a GIANT 14 ft tree in the game room filled with ornaments the kids have made... Enjoy...

Notice we used all her old stockings in this tree...a great way to preserve memories of stockings of the past.

We made two of these arrangements and they are full of tall lights in them..perfect for the spot they are in!

The main staircase that you see as you enter the house.....STUNNING

The mantle in the game room

BEAUTIFUL HOMES, but most of all BEAUTIFUL FAMILIES full of THANKSGIVING to GOD for life, health and answered prayers.

Tomorrow night I will draw for the wonderful HOLIDAY CD! and then Friday night for a drawing for a special holiday SURPRISE! So leave your comments...That's all it takes to be in the drawing. More beautiful homes to come in the next few days.


Sunday, November 22, 2009

So much for posting everyday! Can't do it....There is just so much energy and at the end of a day my brain cannot make a complete sentence. My body cannot move and the BED calls my name.

THIS POST will be a long one, as I don't know when I will have another window of time to blog....maybe Wednesday night....I have a some great new "Grammy Pictures" that I will post on my main blog.....I have so much to be thankful for.
So check out Teresa's Treasures in the next day or two and you will see my greatest blessings.

COME with me and lets look at the last week. You can click on the pitures and they will enlarge (I hope)!
If this gets too long, just move on to another blog. Its too long for me.
I would love to do a post on each house, but I am afraid that was just wishful thinking on my part. I hope you will enjoy what I can manage to post today.
This was the week I traveled for four days to another town to work at wonderful homes. My biggest problem was I did not take my elves. They stayed here and worked on their own stuff and one even decorated my house! (thanks Terri)

This started our week ..tree, mantle and staircase....though I don't think there are any pictures on my camera of anything but the tree and staircase.....

TUESDAY'S HOUSE is an entire post. We will spend another day there this week
so I will show all the pictures then...but here is a sneak preview! It is a FABULOUS house that a WONDERFUL family lives in.

Wednesday began travel days.... This is one of my sweet friends that moved to a new city this year and has the CUTEST little 3 month old girl!

And this was the FIRST tree I had done totally by MYSELF in years. Wow do I appreciate all my elves.

The home for the next couple of days was for some dear friends...We have only known them a few years, but feel like we have known them forever. JUST VERY SPECIAL people.
Although there was TONS of work, we really enjoyed our stay in their home. My husband traveled with me this week and that was great...I could do paper work while he drove.
This is one of those homes that just says WELCOME and you instantly feel at home. IT is a stunningly beautiful home that has an ABUNDANCE of Christmas.
The picture below is right out of Southern Living...a beautiful, warm, inviting room. The tree turned out gorgeous and was a great new look! There is not a ROOM in this house that is not filled with Christmas...this home really turns into a WINTER WONDERLAND! They have lots of parties planned, so I know they will bring JOY to many people.

The mantle in this cozy room....

Not a great picture, but a view of the dining room

This is the tree in the foyer, full of Annalee ornaments...Opening the front door just screams Christmas.

This is a HALF TREE that I totally redid.....love the look and want one for myself. This is in the family room and perfect for the spot it is in. Below is the top of the half tree....there are endless possibilities for this tree...one you could change each year.

Snowmen are everywhere in this room and a peak at the mantle!

another view of the BIG TREE!

A few pictures of the kitchen cabinets filled with great collectibles from over the years. The staircase looked beautiful, but somehow I did not get a picture.

Even though this was WORK...this was a fun time with friends....GREAT food, good WINE, and fun helpers! (Thank you Vee, Sue and Brenda)

Back home late on Friday and on to a big job yesterday...but also back to my elves....

This house has 2 large trees and for the first time we flip flopped the trees from the living area and the landing upstairs....Loved it! The tree above is what we call a BALL TREE....totally filled with every color ball, crammed in the tree to give the fullness.....one of the most colorful trees that we do!

The tree on the landing is filled with gold, silver and a touch of burgandy.
and the next picture is the topper for it.

This is the fun combination of colors at the bottom of the staircase.

Hope you have enjoyed the weekly TOUR! I can tell you this body feels it as I sit here with a heating pad on my back...and I finally got a long 12 hours of sleep. That was HEAVEN. My husband is outside putting out our outside lights...Nothing makes me happier than to come home at night to a yard filled with white lights and lots of Disney characters...Be sure and leave me a comment and you will be in the drawing for a wonderful
Holiday CD that I will draw for on Thanksgiving.
*****And because I have SO MUCH TO BE THANKFUL FOR, I want to bless someone this week with a BOX of CHRISTMAS goodies! All comments this week will go in a drawing that I will do on Friday night....SO TWO GIVEAWAYS this week.
I cannot end this post without telling you that you MUST see
THE BLIND SIDE with Sandra Bullok and Tim McGraw...Jack and I slipped into the movie on our way home yesterday. A rare treat during tree season. WE are movie lovers and this was one of the BEST movies I have seen in several years. One of those movies that when the credits roll, no one gets up. A movie you think about! A movie that you think about again.
A movie that makes you take stock of your own life. A movie that somehow makes you want to be a better person. A perfect movie for Thanksgiving week. Have a blessed week.
****Just checked and a few pictures will not enlarge....will try and change that later today....