November 17, 2012

Decking the Halls

Ladies and gentlemen, the Hyatt household is ready for Christmas!

After we rescued the new-to-us tree from my aunt and uncle’s house on Saturday we couldn’t resist setting it up to see what we had to work with. Well that got us feeling Christmas-y, so we just went ahead and did the main tree and the rest of the decor too! My husband is a saint, because if it were up to him nothing would be decorated until after Thanksgiving. He knows how much I love it though, so he put his all into helping me decorate. He’s the best!

Here is the finished product in our living room:

We started outside, where we put icicle lights on our porch roof and regular white lights around the columns. We also put wreaths with a simple red bow on all of our front windows. Inside the front windows we have electric candles, which look great from the outside accenting the wreaths. The wreath on our front door is the same as the ones on the windows, but with a gold bow to make it stand out.

During the day:

All lit up:

Inside our house we have TWO trees! That’s pretty exciting in my book! In the front of the house is the new-to-us tree, which is decorated with all white and silver ornaments. I love having a tree there, because it can be seen through the front window. Our main tree is in the living room, and is decorated in red, green and gold. Naturally, I was going for classic and traditional. My favorite part is the bow on top, which I made myself! I’m pretty proud of it, along with another snazzy bow I made for the wreath hanging on the mirror above our fireplace. I know bows are the tip of the crafting iceberg, but I felt like a regular domestic goddess! Baby steps, right?

I crafted this bad boy all by myself!

Here's the tree in the front office: 

Other than the wreath, we kept it simple on the mantle with just a strand of lighted garland and our stockings, which are monogrammed with the first letter of our names. In front of the fireplace the nutcrackers my dad has given me over the years are displayed in a row; that was Jason’s idea and it looks great!  Jason also surprised me by wrapping our stair rail in garland, which I love too! Other than that we have a nativity scene set up and my Christmas Cookie scented Yankee Candle out. I think that’s it!

Our stockings are hung by the chimney with care...

It was so much fun decorating our first home together for Christmas. For me the best part was Jason hanging the ornament we bought on our honeymoon (at Ye Olde Christmas Shoppe in Disney World) on the tree. 

Our First Christmas Ornament

I can’t wait to add more meaningful ornaments to our tree as we spend many, many more Christmases together. It really is the most wonderful time of the year!

November 14, 2012

Christmas Kick-Off

This past weekend the Hyatt household was busy busy busy! On Thursday night, we headed downtown after work to check out Frankfort’s annual Candlelight Tour. It’s sort of like an open house for businesses and restaurants downtown, and to most Frankfort folks it signals the start of the holiday season. We got some free hot chocolate, heard the KSU band play carols, and saw the mayor light up the Christmas tree on the Old Capitol lawn. That’s always my favorite part! I’ve been going to the Candlelight Tour my whole life, and this is the third year Jason and I have gone together. It’s a great local tradition!

Luminaries lined the sidewalks. 

I met Rudolph!

Jason & I

Christmas Tree on the Old Capital Lawn

On Saturday my mom’s side of the family came to see our new house. My grandmother, aunt, and cousin came from Owensboro for the day and my aunt and uncle from Frankfort came over too. It was fun to feel like a hostess! 

Afterwards, we had lunch at Cracker Barrel, which of course was delicious. My aunt and uncle who live in Frankfort mentioned they were getting rid of their Christmas tree this year to make room for a new one, so later that afternoon Jason and I rescued it from trashdom.  We strung a new string of lights on the section that was out, and now it’s looks great lighting up our front office! 

We’re still in the process of decorating the house for Christmas, but I’ll post more about that when we’re done. So far my greatest achievement has been the bow I learned to make to top our Christmas tree…Pinterest inspired of course!

November 03, 2012

Book Review: Decked

I’m in a Book Club that meets the first Saturday of each month. Basically, we choose a book that we all read during the month and then we get together and talk about it over snacks. It’s wonderful! September was my first time going, and we discussed Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safron Foer. A lot of the ladies didn’t like it, but I really enjoyed it. It kept me interested, so I read it pretty quickly. It’s definitely thought-provoking, that's for sure. I missed October’s meeting because Jason and I were drifting around the Caribbean on our honeymoon, but they read The Vow by Kim and Krickett Carpenter. I didn’t read that one, so I can’t speak to whether or not it’s any good. I did see the movie though, and I liked it.

Tonight we are meeting again, so I thought I’d give a short review on the book we read for this month, Decked by Carol Higgins Clark. It’s a mystery novel, so that was a nice change of pace. Also, it is partially set in Oxford, England, which was exciting since I visited Oxford a few years ago. It was fun, quick read that kept me entertained, but overall I wasn’t too impressed. Maybe I’m a book snob, but I like things to either be extremely well written, make me think, or challenge me in some way. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close did that for me; this one did not. I'm not above reading literary "fluff," but I'd prefer it be written a little better. I'm a big fan of Emily Giffin and Jennifer Wiener, who are both fairly popular "chick-lit" authors with quick-witted writing styles and complex characters whose stories I can really get immersed in. In Carol Higgins Clark's defense though, I'm pretty sure Decked was her first novel, so I'll cut her some slack. It wasn't great, but it wasn't awful, and I'd be up for reading more of her work just to see if she has gotten any better with more experience. 

So that's my two cents on this month's book. It's definitely worth a read if you're even remotely interested, because it's quick paced and won't take you long to get through at all. I'm really looking forward to finding out which book we'll be reading for December! Plus I'm making a new recipe tonight to bring (Apple Cinnamon Monkey Bread), so I'm excited to see how that goes as well!

Have a great weekend!