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Archive for November, 2011

November 30, 2011

O Christmas Tree

It’s tradition in my family to decorate the Christmas Tree on Black Friday, and this year Scott and I were inspired to keep it going.  Although I had to work all day, I was excited to come home, put up  our Christmas decorations and start on the tree.

Scott and I have decided to use an artificial tree until we move into a house.  Since we live on the 8th floor of a condo (thank God for elevators!) it’s a bit of a hassle getting a live tree in and out.  That, and we don’t have the luxury of sweeping all of the fallen needles out into the backyard.  They could be swept onto and over our balcony, so I think we’re doing our downstairs neighbors a favor.

An artificial tree it was, and believe it or not we got this one two Christmas’s ago at K-Mart.  We waited until the day after Christmas when everything was 75% off and got this pre-lighted beauty for around $50!  On top of that, this was the year we got our ornaments, garland, and lights from Target also at a huge discount. 

 *TIP: If you’re wanting to get a completely new look and/or a new tree, the day after Christmas sales are totally worth the wait.

We set a similar type of tree up last year, but this year is the start of a new tradition where we are only putting new ornaments up that we’ve purchased together. 

Without any more babbling, I present to you our very first Hesington Family Christmas Tree:

Just like our other decorations, we kept the fun & funky colors and prints theme going.  I told Scott it everything together looked a little like Whoville, but it’s finally grown on me and this year I love it.

Let’s start the tree breakdown with my favorite part: the live animal decor.

I don’t care if you’re a cat person or not…that’s stinking adorable.

Next, the lights.  Our Christmas tree came pre-lit, but Scott had a great idea of adding more.  We have the pre-lit multi-colored strands, but then added 3 colored to white dimming sets.  I like how it changes and gives the tree movement.

After the lights, came the garland, again purchased from Target.


After garland comes ornaments and we stuck to the basics.  Part of our After-Christmas purchasing was a small medium and large ornament set.  All three came in bright colors, funky patterns, and a variety of shiny, matte and sparkles from Target:

To offset the brightness we added a few matte white ornaments:

From there, we are now only allowing ourselves to add ornaments we purchase together.  This ballerina is from our trip to ICE at Gaylord Palms two years ago:

We have also started a tradition of giving each other Christmas ornaments on our dating anniversary, which is New Years Day.  The rule is you have to get it after Christmas on sale, and last year Scott got me this adorable fish ornament from Pier 1 Imports:

And last, but certainly not least another highlight is our Christmas Pickle.  It’s been a tradition in my family for years to play “find the pickle ornament” on the tree every Christmas Eve. 

 Whoever finds it first (after it’s re-hidden…of course) gets to open a present on Christmas Eve.  It’s a great game for a family of all ages, even one like ours that just constists of me, Scott, the cats and this guy:

Roadie’s great at games, when he’s not distracted by Christmas Tree toys…

(which by the way, has already been destroyed).

Let’s finish off our Christmas Tree Breakdown with my favorite part of decorating: the star.

We had it lit up last year, but the base of it that carried the light disappeared over the year.  Somehow, Scott rigged it to stay up so at least we have something up there.

I really want to find a better tree-topper, or even make one of my own.  I have some ideas for a DIY project, but don’t want to give too much away just yet.

So that’s our first official Hesington Christmas Tree. 

I hope you like it! :)

Off to try to figure the topper out and get more ideas inspired by Pinterest


  • Have you started decorating or gotten your tree yet?
  • Do any of you play the “find the pickle ornament” game?

November 28, 2011

Christmas Decorations Time

I’ve been hearing Christmas music since the end of September, preparing for The Singing Christmas Trees and am excited that the rest of the world is finally on my page of decking the halls and going on sleigh rides.

As much as I love Halloween and Thanksgiving, nothing beats the tradition of decorating at home for the Holidays.  This year we decided to keep it simple, but fun.

You may have picked up on the fact that Scott and I have a decorating sense that you wouldn’t necessarily find in a Martha Stewart Magazine.  We like fun & funky colors and prints and share a love for a contemporary dream home made up of unique furniture and pieces.

With that said, I get little approval for anything in the country chic category, so I welcome you to a fun and contemporary Hesington Christmas Decorating Party…

Mini Christmas Trees:

We got the set of teal and mint green mini trees from Urban Outfitters in the After Christmas Sale in 2009.  Last year we decorated them with the mini ornaments, also from UO, but this year we added the mini strands of lights which Scott picked up from Michaels. I LOVE these little guys.

HB&SH Stockings:

We got everything you see in this picture a few years ago from Target.  My favorite part about them is the HB & SH initials, which are really crystal lettered broach pins:

I love the funky JOY & NOEL stocking hangers, also from Target:

Oh, yeah…by the time I got finished taking photos around the house Scott added some white Christmas lights to the fixture.  I thought it turned out pretty cool:

Candy Cane Trees:

Now, this “believe” sign might have been pushing it for Scott’s taste, but I fought for it (and won).  I found the sign and the red and white tree cones at Stein Mart last Christmas.  The cones actually came in a set of 3, but I’m still debating on where to set them up.

For now, they’re on top of the aquarium.

Kitchen Stuff:

It doesn’t take much to add a little holiday touch to your kitchen.  Just like my Fall Decor, I headed to Home Goods to find this set of hand towels for $5.99.

There’s nothing more pleasing when you’re washing your hands than to smell a seasonal scent.  This Wish Peppermint hand soap was only $4.99 from Home Goods.  It is surprisingly strong, which makes it refreshing…and addictive…believe me! :)

We always display colorful or seasonal napkins in our contemporary napkin holder from Ikea.  They have tons of bright and fun napkins there, but for the holidays I found a the “Plenty for All” Raindeer napkins, again from Home Goods.

We also put our “H” napkins on top, which was a present we saved from Christmas last year.


Every time I turn around Scott finds more Christmas lights to put up.  Here you can see our curious kitties scoping out what’s going on out on the balcony…

And, of course more lights:

Creative…yes…but I’m still not sure about that one.  I love the candle holder though, which was an engagement gift from Pier 1 Imports.

That’s the majority of our Christmas Decor, but keep an eye out for even more coming soon!  I’ll leave you with a sneak peak at our first Hesington Family Christmas Tree:


  • Do you prefer a contemporary or more country decorating theme?
  • When do you normally start decorating for the Holidays?
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