Sunday, January 7, 2018

Preserving Christmas Memories


As everyone puts Christmas away, I wanted
to share some of my favorite ways of remembering
past Christmases.  

Christmas is our favorite holiday and it has the
most family traditions surrounding it at
our home.  We spend a lot of time and energy
trying to create magical memories at this
time of year and looking back at my own life,
I realize so many memories are jogged by
pictures.  

(Taken 22 years ago when my youngest was under a year.  This
picture is put out every year.  Now the two oldest have five of
their own.)

I want my children to remember, so gifts I give,
and Christmas decor involves pictures, and I 
want to share some of my favorite ways I have
found.


My most popular post last year was 
My Life Story, which I published with
lulu.com.  I have loved using Lulu for family
histories.  I have also regularly published my blog,
making copies for each of our children, with Blog2print,
but lately my favorite source has been Costco Photo.

(Christmas 2016 Book)

Photos at Christmas are so colorful and vibrant


and I wanted to preserve some of that.  I accidentally
discovered Costco's 12x12 flatfold book a few years
ago when I printed up a memory book for my oldest
granddaughter when she had spent two year's as 
a Little Miss for our friend Hannah while she was
Miss Orem and Miss Utah County.  When I got
the book back I was stunned by the thick, luxe pages
that were so glossy and stunning.  They start at $39
and I have recommended them to everyone I know.
Hannah's twin sisters both recently got married and
used these books for sign in books.


I gave one of these books to each of my children
this year - documenting Christmas 2016.  I want
to capture our traditional chocolate dipping,


desserts served,


and tables set.



These are priceless memories to me.


I had done this previously in a book comprising
our first 30 years of Christmases.  Now I plan
to do one each Christmas.  It will be so fun to watch
as the family grows, and we are always together for
Christmas.  The Christmas Memories 1979 To 2009
was printed by Shutterfly, but I can't begin to 
tell you how much more I like the glossy photos
from Costco.  I have printed these books
for family vacations also and place them
in the living room for others to look at.


It isn't every year that we get a good group
photo, but last year we had time to set up the
family, and the camera on a tripod, and play
with bouncing the flash off the vaulted
ceiling.  The picture was so good, I wanted to
blow it up.  I had tried a photo from Costco
printed on metal from my youngest son's
wedding this summer (still haven't posted about
that - yikes!) and so I decided to print the family
pajama photo out on metal.  It turned out so well,
it was placed next to the piano that houses 
our village and is guarded by two giant
nutcrackers.  (These were Costco purchases almost
20 years ago!)



After our little angel's picture was so beautiful,
I also had it printed on metal from Costco.  The
difference in printing on metal is it gives you such
bright and vivid pictures and such a high gloss
finish.  This one cost $53.  


This Holy Family shot was from two
Christmases ago - this is the 2 1/2 year
old that crawled into the manger this year
when she was six months old.  I had this
printed last year on canvas from Costco.

The mother of these little ones, my oldest
daughter, just had a larger canvas printed
of this for her family.  

You never know when you are going to
get a photo worth enlarging and printing.  If
you look closely, you can see that behind Joseph
is our same little angel, but she was bending down
and goofing around - you can see her halo above
Joseph's head.  When you did get a great 
photo, why not enlarge it and print it on
metal or canvas and use it as decor?

I hope these ideas inspire you as to how you
can preserve some fun family memories and
use them for gifts and decor.  The years flee
so quickly, it is wonderful to capture these
memories while we can.

Tell me your favorite ways of preserving
treasured Christmas memories.

I am not associated with, nor compensated
by any of these companies.  I just love to
share the ideas and sources that I love.

I will be posting this with













Saturday, December 30, 2017

I'm Not Ready....


I am not ready for Christmas and lights and magic
to end and be over and put away!  


I love that places keep the magic going until
into January.  My birthday is two weeks after
Christmas and for the last 20 years we have
escaped the dreary weather of January here
in Utah at least for a week so that I can grow
older in sunshine.  Let me tell you it helps!


We decided to have an early birthday dinner 
to celebrate with the kids and their spouses,
and we headed up to La Caille at Quail Run -
the fanciest restaurant we have in Utah to bask
in their Christmas glow and celebrate my birthday.


I have tried to teach my children that you should
dress up for a nice restaurant, and they did a
great job.  They had fun doing it too.



This one came straight from work so he 
felt underdressed and didn't want to take
his coat off and she is 7 months pregnant
and didn't want to take her coat off either.


Everyone but one couple were able to make it. 
Half of them had never been to La Caille before,
and we wanted them to experience it in it's
Christmas splendor.



It's what my dream chateau would look like,
inside and out.





And the food was marvelous too.
This was a Burrata cheese appetizer served
in a slice of squash.


An exquisite filet with a sauce that was a blend
of Bearnaise sauce and a Red Wine Sauce with
incredible Au Gratin Potatoes,


And a monstrous chocolate cake!  We had to laugh at the
tiny ice cream scoops!  We were too full and brought most
of the cake home.

Next we are off to our cabin at Sundance for
skiing through New Year's Day and then
hubby is whisking me off first to Disneyland
to soak up the last of their Christmas magic
before it disappears until next year and then
on to Hawaii to soak up some sun while I age!

Mid January we can get back to real life, but until
then we are enjoying the season until it is all gone!



Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Blushing Christmas Eve Table


I just get giddy as I set the tables for
Christmas Eve.  Everything is prepped and
the Christmas music is turned on, and it
is my happy place.  

This year I was inspired by these new
chair covers from CV Linens - they
just looked ethereal.  I ordered them
in blush pink and my table began to
come together.  The tablecloths were
blush pink rectangular cloths from Amazon
by Your Chair Covers Inc.




On the adult table I used my mother's Pink
Fostoria glasses.  


Blush pink and white angel wings graces the plate stacks.
The blush pink wings were from Hobby Lobby this
year and the white ones were from At Home.


Gold sparkling chargers anchored the
white and gold rimmed plates, and gold
flatware was the choice.




I wanted sparkle down the tables with
a glittering blush runner, along with
blush pink metallic beads from Hobby Lobby
this year.


But I wanted to bring in Christmas greenery
with florals this year.  I started with a
purchased outdoor hanging pot made all
of greenery and pulled it apart, recreating
two arrangements in mercury glass
and adding pink and white roses.



Pink mercury glass candlesticks graced the adult table.






With the pink touches I added to the mantel
and tree this year, the table looked perfect
in the great room.



The little people table is a Lifetime table that
has adjustable legs.  I used matching Chiavari
chairs in child size. They just love having their
own table.




Goblets for their table are from Dollar Tree,
so there is no worry about breaking.  Of course,
because we aren't worried about them breaking,
we haven't broken one in over two years!



My daughter in law was so cute, as she walked
into the entry and looked into the great room,
she stopped and pulled out her camera and 
video taped the room.  What a compliment.

I hope you had a very Merry Christmas.

I will be posting with


Monday, December 25, 2017

Angels in Heaven and on Earth


Angels we have heard on high
Sweetly singing o'er the plains,
And the mountains in reply,
Echoing their joyous strains
Gloria, in excelcis Deo!

Can you just imagine for a minute
what it would have been like to be
a humble shepherd out guarding your 
flocks and a heavenly host appears 
unto you bringing you the great news
that your Savior is born, and to come
and bear witness to the world through
all generations of that reality!

What wonder and joy that must have been.


My little angels are my grandchildren.  Those of you
who have followed me for some time know how most
of what I do is motivated by creating magic for them.

I love the wonder and joy in their little faces.

This is Jacquelyn.  You saw her when she was first
born and now she is a very astute and bright five
year old.

We had only one pretty angel costume for our
Night in Bethlehem and she quickly 
told me that I needed another one, and in a size
that would fit her better.


She asked to have a sleepover -all by herself -
the other night.  She had asked for that once
before and just made it into the house with
her cookie that we had stopped to buy, when
alligator tears began rolling down her face,
and she wanted to go home.


This time she spent the night and did so well,
and we had just tried on the new, better-fitting
dress, when she said she didn't feel well and
wanted her mommy.  I think it is beginning to
show in her face on this one.


Of course, grandma didn't know if she was just
a little homesick or what, but we got her changed,
and her things packed up, and just as we got 
into her house - sure enough - she really was
sick!  Oh no!  Not at Christmas time! 

And speaking of angels, I created this angel
mannequin this week.


Ever since we created our mannequins at
Halloween, I decided I wanted one for 
Christmas to decorate my home.


Of course, with the angel wings on the tree,
she needs to be set up close to the tree.


Everything was collected from my closet
and drawers - skirts, a jacket, a ruffled
vest, a set of gloves, pearls, and some
table linens.


I had purchased a black velvet mannequin
online.  She took 45 minutes to assemble.  Such
a fun last minute project.

I just love the beauty and glory
of angels.
May your life be filled with
earthly and Heavenly angels at
this time of year and always.

Wishing all of you and yours a very
wonderful Christmas, and may the joy
the good news of Christ's birth bring
you peace all year.  May you feel God's
angels surrounding you and lifting you up.
May you give glory to God on the highest.

Merry Christmas on this
Christmas Eve
from 
Purple Chocolat Home.


Our whole bunch of angels.










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