How To Make A Christmas Wreath

I love having a good wreath and typically buy mine at Whole Foods or Trader Joes and then decorate them, as seen here. But I really wanted to try making a wreath this year. And it turned out to be an easy 15 minute project with no headaches. I was pleasantly surprised.

One of the reasons it was so easy is probably because I had all the supplies on hand...wreath frame, green florist wire, purning shears and most importnatly left over Christmas tree branches (the ones that get cut off in order to make it fit in the stand).

It was really easy to do. Start by wrapping the florist wire around one of the spokes of the wreath frame, then wrap it around the frame, in the same spot, 3 or 4 times, and make it tight. No fancy knots or anything, just keep wrapping it. Then put on the first branch, then wrap the florist wire around the base of the branch, then add the next branch and keep wrapping. Don't cut the wire inbetween, just keep it one long piece. I wrapped each new branch probably 3 or 4 times before adding the next and tried to not squeeze the smaller branches in with the wire but wrapping in between them. Then just keep adding branches and keep wrapping. At the end just put the branch(s) underneath the first ones and keep wrapping around, trying to keep the wire hidden.

Then cut the wire leaving 4 or 5 inches of excess. Then I wrapped the excess wire around some of the previous wrappings and did a simple knot, which wasn't even needed.

I tried shaking the wreath a bit after it was done and it was still intact so I figure it can survive the mild California winter weather coming.

It's a bit plain, although I do like the simple look, so I'll probably add some ornaments or pinecones but for now I am just glad that it is done and up. And I am pretty proud of how it turned out since I had no idea what I was doing and The Bubb managed not to hurt himself (or eat any of our succulent plants) while I was making it :)

Off to finish those last minute Christmas orders! Hope everyone is having a good week :)


Christmas Book Advent Calendar

I kept seeing all these advent calendars last year with small gifts or candy, etc. and I thought that a new toy every night or worse, candy, was just too much, so I thought books. Well apparently I am not alone it seems after doing a google search, so I've joined the book advent calendar band wagon.

Now you're probably thinking that I'm a crazy - a new book, every night, that will get expensive fast. Well for this Christmas, we only spent $10 (yup that's right and only on one book - we get him one new Christmas/Winter themed book every year). So how did I manage to do 25 days of books for $10?

First we own 7 Christmas/Winter themed books already. Two we had given The Bubb already: Snowy Day and Max's Christmas and 5 other books: Winnie The Pooh's Christmas, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Morri's Disappearing Bag, Bear Snores On and The Mole Family Christmas

Now for the rest? There was no way we were going to buy that many. Solution: The library! I went yesterday and scored all the books that I needed. No they are not all the best winter/Christmas stories ever but the majority are pretty good and we can try them out without spending money on amazon for books unknown and we can slowly purchase the favorites over the next few years.

Okay so wrapping. Yes I wrapped all of them. Regular paper gets expensive and lets face it who wants to cut paper to size for 25 presents in one evening. Not me. (and my lovely husbanad said, isn't there a cheaper way and suggested tissue paper). So that is what I did and I didn't have to use the scissors once as tissue paper is already the perfect size (or at least the type I used). Yes you can kinda see through them, but he is 2 and doesn't care anyway. It took me about 30 minutes to get them all done. No fancy ribbon or anything.


I was going to number them, so that I could put the library books up front incase I couldn't renew them, but since I can sorta get a glimpse of what they are anyway through the tissue paper I can encourage The Bubb to choose the library books first. But I don't think that renewing is going to be a problem, so it is good. And now after the second night we've decided that we will just pick the next book, as having a 2 year pick out of 25 right before bed, means stall stall stall. So it is faster and simpler and he is just as pleased.

(sorry for the blurry pictures above, he was moving WAY too fast for me to refocus each time. Evan and I also both agree that it is good we're doing this as he is super slow at unwrapping. It takes him forever as he likes to take off about a square inch each time, which is nice that he likes to prolong it but Christmas is going to take seriously way too long, so we have 23 more days to get him up to a tolerable speed)

We read the Polar Express last night and while it is a little old for him, he kept calling the train Thomas, which I thought was so cute, and was totally captivated by the pictures. Love that book.

My next project is to start on my Christmas wreath. I am going to try to attempt to attach the branches myself instead of buying one premade and decorating like year's past. I have the branches but they are outside and it has been pouring rain the past few days and so they are soaked too. It is supposed to be sunny tomorrow so hopefully I'll be able to dry them out a bit.
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