I Still Believe in the Magic of Christmas

Do you still believe in the magic of Christmas? If you’re like me, you’ll want to turn your beach house into a Winter Wonderland with affordable decor from Oriental Trading. Just so you know, I did receive free and festive decor to facilitate this post, but all opinions and photos are completely my own.

believe in the magic of christmas

Do you remember when Christmas was magical? You woke up on Christmas morning when you were ten (or younger if some jack wad ruined it for you before then) and all in the world was right? There was a Muppet Drum Set (the EXACT ONE you wanted…the ONE you asked Santa for) sitting under your tree, just waiting for you to make beautiful music (and drive your family insane). You’d asked Santa, he listened, and you were happier in that moment than you had ever been in your whole life, and possibly happier than you’d ever be again. THAT is magic; that is the magic of Christmas.

Let me let you in on a little secret: I still believe in the magic of Christmas. The exact minute I realize it’s time to buy the Thanksgiving meal is the exact moment that I start busting out the tree, the lights, the mistletoe, the…well, everything magical. To be honest, I really haven’t had a Christmas as magical as the one that I had when I was ten since then. Not because I didn’t get the exact gift I wanted, not because I wasn’t with the people I loved, but because nothing will ever compare to the magic that I felt that year; at that exact moment. But I still try to capture the magic…do you?

still believe in the magic of christmas

For all of these reasons, I completely, totally, and ridiculously deck the halls for Christmas each year. It looks like a winter wonderland (snowflakes on the ceiling and all) in my southeast Texas home because Christmas is magical and I want my children to always feel the magic of Christmas (long past their 10th birthday so shut your piehole if you want to be the jack wad that ruins it for them before then). But decking the halls, like all of them, can get quite expensive if you don’t know where to turn. It totally doesn’t have to be though. Making the magic come alive for Christmas is as easy as building up your decor over the years, stopping by your local dollar store, or (my favorite option because I don’t have to leave the house or get out of my jammies) shopping online with Oriental Trading Company.

believe in the magic of christmas

Just little touches around the house, everywhere, can bring the magic alive for you and the kids. How adorable is this paper towel holder, for real?

believe in the magic of christmas

Walkways through the house are great for lighting. To me, and apparently to my kids, lighting just makes the mood in the house feel more magical throughout the season.

still believe in christmas

A naughty and nice coffee station is a festive way to perk you up in the morning. (See what I did there? Perk. Coffee. I crack me up.)

believe in christmas

Of course, no Texas Christmas would be complete without a cowboy boot candy cane count down.

still believe in christmas

Turning a beach house into a winter wonderland does have its challenges though. But as long as you get your elf to play along, you can make your beachy decor work during the season of magic. Thankfully, Mikey the Elf is a really good sport!

believe in christmas

I love turning countertops into fun and festive spaces the kids can enjoy. Bubby, in particular, thinks this Snowman Candy Dish that I got from Oriental Trading Company is the BEST. THING. EVER! OK, maybe it’s the peppermints that he’s truly fond of, but I’m more partial to the dish.

believe in christmas

Our tiki bar even got a makeover for the season. Isn’t it magical?

believe in christmas

We all know that the tree is probably the MOST important decoration you can adorn during the Christmas season so decorating it to fit your seasonal theme, as well as your typical decor, is key for bringing this all together. Since I’m partial to snowmen during the holiday season, and beachy and sparkly things adorn my home for the rest of the year, it’s no surprise that we decorate our tree with a combination of both. Flip flops, glitter, and snowman candy cane ornaments for the win!

Do you still believe in the magic of Christmas? If so, how do you transform your home into a winter wonderland? If you find the whole process too time consuming or expensive, you might be looking in the wrong places. This year, and every year, turn to Oriental Trading Company for all of your holiday needs. Fun, festive, and affordable holiday decor you’ll display for years to come. Look, we all have to grow up, but we don’t have to grow old and stop believing in magic. Embrace the season, enjoy, and just believe in the magic of Christmas again! I believe; do you?

Beach House to Haunted House for Halloween

Learn how to transform your beach house into a haunted house for Halloween with affordable decor from Oriental Trading. Just so you know, I did receive free and freaky decor to facilitate this post, but all opinions and photos are completely my own.

beach house to haunted house

Beach House to Haunted House on a Budget

Halloween is my second favorite holiday, coming in as a very close second to Christmas of course. Since Bubby is basically a Halloween baby, we like to “do it up” around here and we tend to start early. Our house is full of beach decor in hues of blue and green so it’s kind of tricky to give it that scary feel that we want for the month of October. But with the help of affordable Halloween Decor from Oriental Trading, we can easily transform our beach house into a Haunted House for Halloween!

beach house to haunted house

Reapers, and skeletons, and spiders…oh my! With just a few simple touches, you don’t have to makeover your house for Halloween, just creep it up a bit!

beach house to haunted house

Solo Man is by far Bubby’s favorite Halloween decoration so he typically goes up first. The frightful banter and glowing eyes from this guy spooks passers by every evening and it’s way funnier than it should be to me!

beach house to haunted house

No haunted house would be complete without a reaper!

beach house to haunted house

This year’s new addition for our outside decor, Greta, is ready to greet all of the trick or treaters as they walk up this year.

beach house to haunted house

Making the inside of our home a little scary is always more of a struggle. I mean, there’s nothing scary about seashells, light blues and greens, and anchors, right? But with a little imagination, it’s pretty simple to change things up. Hang webs from windows and add a few spiders.

beach house to haunted house

Hang motion-activated (scary as hell) slashing bats from walkways.

beach house to haunted house

Cover antique desktops with bloody clothes and skeletons, and things start to take shape quickly!

beach house to haunted house

Placing signs and potion bottles on your tiki bar gives it a festive flair.

beach house to haunted house

And my absolute favorite, the screaming, shaking skeleton in his cage, hangs just outside my kitchen so that every time I drop, chop, or pop something, he starts chattering and cracks me up!

beach house to haunted house

Our backyard graveyard (in the jungle) is a great place for entertaining all of our ghoulish friends. Really, when it all comes down to it, it’s so simple and affordable to turn your beach house into a haunted house with the help of Oriental Trading, a few dollar store items, and after-Halloween sale items from your favorite big box store.

What do you do to boo during the month of October?

DIY Aurora Queen of the Moors Crown

This DIY Queen of the Moors Crown was inspired when I received an early release copy of Disney’s Maleficent from Click Communication to help promote the in-store release on November 4th. All opinions, ideas, and photos are entirely my own.

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“For in the other kingdom, the Moors lived every manner of strange and wonderful creature.

And they needed neither king nor queen but trusted in one another.”

Maleficent is my new all-time favorite Disney movie EVER! That’s saying a lot. I’m a Disney freak. One might think it’s because I have a million kids so I had to learn to embrace them, but that’s not true. One of my very first vivid memories as a child was going to the movie theater with my mom and my sisters to watch a Disney movie. I was hooked at about the age of 3 and things haven’t changed since, and I never miss a single new release. Unfortunately, because there were questions about whether Maleficent was completely kid friendly, I opted to skip it at the theater *SIGH* and anxiously await the release of the DVD in store. And that time has come! Disney’s Maleficent will be available on Disney Blu-ray™ Combo Pack, Digital HD, Disney Movies Anywhere, DVD, and On-Demand November 4, 2014! I got an early release copy, and I’m not going to ruin it for you if you haven’t already seen it, but I’m going to tell you…again…I loved it and have watched it several times. And for the record, there was nothing even remotely frightening to my 8 year old daughter in the movie and she loves it too! We loved it so much that it inspired me, a total craft hater, to craft an Aurora’s Queen of the Moors Crown. Want to make one for your little princess before the in-store release? It’s super easy. If I can do this, anyone can!

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Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Thick, bendable wire
  • Electrical tape
  • A random assortment of leaves (the fake foliage you can buy at any big box store)
  • Random embellishments (I used a few beads and some sparkly gold twigs)
  • Scissors
  • Gold spray paint
  • Hot glue gun

Start with the wire. Measure the piece around your queen’s head and cut it accordingly, overlapping by about 2 or so inches. Take the electrical tape and tape the overlapping wire together. Be sure to cover the whole area to avoid sharp edges.

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Cut the leaves off of the stems, spray paint both sides gold, then start hot gluing them on the wire band as randomly or neatly as you see fit until the entire band is covered to your liking.

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Clip your other, smaller leaves, twigs, etc. and hot glue them as you’d like to get the desired look and depth of the crown.

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That’s it! When you’re done, you have a golden crown inspired by a movie that you either already love, or you’re going to love as soon as you see it on November 4th! This was a fun project that my daughter was able to help with and she absolutely adores the results.

maleficent craft, diy queen of the moors crown, aurora crown

November 4th is just around the corner, hurry up and preorder your copy of Maleficent today, and then head to the store to pick up supplies to make your own Queen of the Moors Crown before it arrives. In the meantime, check out all of the buzz about Malefient on Facebook and Twitter. If you’ve already seen the movie, I’d love to hear what you thought of it. If you’re anxiously awaiting the in-store release, let me know what you think of it as soon as you see it. Seriously y’all…Maleficent FTW!