Monthly Archives:

November 2011


Holiday Open House: Week 1

Welcome to week 1 of the Holiday Open House!This is the week to share your Dining Room and Kitchen Holiday Decor!

I will start off my tour in our dining room.

I put a table runner on the table and then used some old garland as greener.
Slipped in different silver candle sticks with white or silver candles and then added some white berries and glittered pine cones to the garland.

Here is my Christmas Village.
I had to get creative with it this year because I used to put it on our hutch but I am using that in my craft room so I had to come up with a new idea. Luckily, since we just moved we had lots of empty boxes! Covered them up with different white fabrics for layers and put the houses on that.

Shot of the table and village in the background.

Moving our way to the kitchen, we’ll make a stop at the bar.
Above the bar hangs the burlap art I created (tutorial next week) and then on the bar a fun Silver Tinsel Tree with 2 little snowmen.

Closer shot of the tree and snowmen.

I hung some colorful snowflakes in front of our sliding back door.

I don’t decorate much in the kitchen but I have this little tree on our island with some candy dishes under it.

And under the island, I have another cute tree with my fun, tall snowman.

Above our stove we have this glass block window so I added another colorful snowflake in this window and then have my Christmas Salt and Pepper Shakers in the window.

Here is a closer shot of my salt and pepper shakers.

That is the end of my tour so I can’t wait to see how you have decorated!


1.) Link up to a specific post not your blog in general.

2.) Your post must be of your Holiday Decorations not of a tutorial.

3.) Stop and visit a couple links to get new ideas!

4.) HAVE FUN!!!

Grab a button if you’d like!

holiday open house button

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Ribbon Christmas Ornament

I shared this tutorial over at I {Heart} Naptime during my move and I want to share it here with all of you as well!

Ribbon Christmas Ornament

Here is how to make one for yourself!


-4 inch Styrofoam ball
-Low Temp glue gun (this way it won’t melt the styrofoam)
-Good pair of scissors
-4 spools of ribbon (2 spools of the same for main ribbon and 2 different spools for accents.)
How to:

-Take the main ribbon that will cover the ball and measure out to see how much it will take to go around the ball once.

-Cut both of your main spools to length leaving a little to overlap.
– Glue one end down and pull tight around the ball. Glue other end down.
**Do not place glue along the whole ribbon. You may need to slightly adjust the ribbon in the end to fill gaps.**

-Glue 4 ribbons first in an “X” pattern.
-Then glue four more in the centers where they cross.

-Then fill in the rest of the gaps.

-When completely covered, you may need to slightly shift the ribbon to fill in any gaps.

-Next, take your first accent ribbon and pull it around the center of the ball.

-Cut to length.

-Glue down along the center of the ball.

-Cut more of the accent color to create a loop.
-Place a small dot of glue near the ends to make the loop but do not glue the ends together.

-Spread the ends of the loop and glue down to the top of the ball.
You can also use small pins if you’d like.

-Now take your third accent color and cut short strips.
-Burn the edges of the ribbon so it doesn’t fray.
-Fold in half and add a little dot of glue to hold together.
-Glue to the center bottom of the ornament.

-Continue gluing to make a small cluster of fringe at the bottom of the ornament.

-To finish, cut a short piece of ribbon and wrap the fringe at the top.

Bottom fringe complete, let’s work on the top now!

-Cut short pieces again, and glue the centers the same way as the bottom fringe.
-Glue around the top loop.

-Take a short piece and cover all the edges to give it a finished look.

And now it is all ready to hang on your tree!
You could add some fun buttons or beads to it if you like to add some more texture and if we didn’t just move and all my craft supplies weren’t still in boxes, I probably would have. So embellish to your heart’s desire!

Linking up to some of these parties.

Oh, and don’t forget the Holiday Open House starts tomorrow!! YEAH!

holiday open house button

Check out the HOH announcement post to find out the details.

And if you’d like, you can check out my posts from last year to get an idea of what to share.
Week 1, Week 2, Week 3, and Week 4


BIG News on the Homefront

Hey everybody!!
I’m back!

I hope you enjoyed all those fabulous guest posts while we were moving but I sure have missed you all!

I have some big news to share with you guys.

First, we made it out to Colorado and are officially HOMEOWNERS!! 🙂This is our new house.

We had to give it some immediate attention as soon as we closed by replacing the flooring in the WHOLE house so we have been quite busy!

In the coming weeks, I will share what we have done so far with the house with all of you.

And second, do you guys remember the post I wrote back in April titled “Something that I want?”

Well, guess what?!


It took us nearly 3 years for it to happen but it finally has!

When we moved to VA, we quickly found a Fertility Specialist and got to work.
Many tests were run and they had no idea why we weren’t getting pregnant, which was frustrating.
We did a round of IUI and we were just sure it was going to work and it didn’t.
We were going to try a second round with medicine but had to wait a month because we were flying out to CO to house hunt during the prime time of the month and apparently, we didn’t need it! We got pregnant that month!
Guess we should have bought a house a long time ago to get my mind on something else! lol

I found out a week before my birthday so it was a great present!

I wanted to tell Travis in a special way and I had an idea in my head since we started trying so as soon as I got that “Pregnant” I immediately got ready and went to work.

Ran to the store to buy pink and blue balloons, made a big sign, and wrote out some clues.
I sent Travis on a scavenger hunt through our apartment where he found me, the balloons, and the big sign in our bedroom yelling, “Surprise!”

He was quite surprised and quite excited!

So, excited to finally see that word!

And then within days, the morning, I mean ALL DAY SICKNESS, kicked in.
I was MISERABLE!!!!!

All day, everyday, I was feeling sick or getting sick.
I could barely make it from our bed to the bathroom or to the couch in the living room without getting sick.
I could barely eat and if I did, I was lucky if it stayed down at all.
I lost weight and was so happy for nausea meds, although they only helped me a little.

I wanted this SO bad but was totally hoping that I wouldn’t be that sick and it completely SUCKED! lol

And it didn’t help that we were moving across the country during all this! UGH!
I was pretty much invisible the whole move. Travis did a fabulous job taking care of me and everything else that had to get done!

Luckily, before we left VA, I was able to get an ultrasound.

Baby M at 8 weeks.
This made the sickness worth it but I still wish it wasn’t SO bad!

While we headed out to CO, we stopped at each of our families’ houses for an evening and we told them in person.

I scanned the ultrasound picture and put it in a frame with the words saying: “Coming soon: May 2012” in it.
Each of the grandparents got a frame saying “Grandkids” and my sister got one saying “Family.”
Needless to say, everyone was thrilled!!!

Here are some progress pictures of me week by week.

I will be 14 weeks tomorrow and am so happy to be out of that 1st trimester because I am having more and more better days already!

I want to thank all of you for the sweet words you left on the “Something that I want” post and for all the prayers you have said for Travis and I.

Baby M is due May 29, 2012 and I will be sure to continue to share pictures of all things baby!


Guest Post: The CSI Project


Hi, A Glimpse Inside readers, I am “the” CSI girl. You can find me blogging and operating, The CSI Project everyday. Visit
My hope is that when you come over to the blog, you leave inspired! I also hope to encourage you to Create, Share and Inspire. Come on over for a new challenge, new tutorials and new winners every week!I am so happy to be here at Allison’s place. This is one of my favorite blogs that I visit everyday.Best wishes on your move, Allison!

Today, I am sharing a quick and easy neighbor or friend Christmas gift. I love this because it is easy but also personalized so the receiver feels special and that’s part of the fun of Christmas, making others feel special and loved.

All you need is:

~ glass ornaments( I bought mine at Hobby Lobby 30% back in September. I was way ahead)
I loved all of the shapes they had. So many choices.
~ Glass Etching cream(found at any craft store)~ Stencils
~ tape

1) Pull out the stencils of the letter you want to use. You could spell a word but for mine, I kept it simple and just did the families last name initial.

2) Tape down your stencil

3) Now, use your etching cream as directed on the bottle. It is simple. Just fill in the stencil and wash with water. Be sure to test it first.
It may seem intimidating, but really it is easy and you can do so many projects once you get the hang of it!
That is a CSI Promise, friends!

4) Finally, take off your stencil and finish the etching process and you are done.

Now, I can give these to our neighbors and friends. After I did these, I had another idea to make a holiday centerpiece for my table. I etched the words, Ho Ho Ho and added greenery.There are so many possibilities using etching cream. I hope you will try it out and make your own Christmas gifts.

~ Thanks for having me, Allison.
I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving and a very happy holiday season!
Stop by The CSI Project and join in all of the fun.Consider this your personal invitation.

Thanks so much for sharing Dee!! 🙂


Catch a Glimpse Party #55

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!!

I hope you all have a fabulous day with your family and friends eating lots of yummy food!

But it isn’t just Thanksgiving, it is also party day!

Catch a Glimpse Button

What fabulous ideas do you have to share this week?


1.) Link up any crafts, recipes, home decor, tips, etc.

2.) PLEASE be sure to link to your specific post not your general blog. (I will delete any posts that do not follow this criteria.)

3.) Add my button or a link to my blog in your post or somewhere on your blog so others can come party too. (You can find my button code by clicking on the button icon in the top, left column.)

4.) PLEASE visit and comment on the post before you and after you, on top of any others that catch your eye. Everyone loves comment love!

5.) And most importantly… HAVE FUN!!


Guest Post: Lil’ Luna


Hi there A Glimpse Inside readers!So happy to be here for Allison today.My name is Kristyn, and I blog over at Lil’ Luna.Come on over and say hi and also check out some fun and easy tutorials, crafts and recipes.
Today’s project was totally inspired by an awesome tutorial I saw last year {Soda Bottles Craft for Dad}.

I had been waiting to see more of these for every holiday
and hadn’t seen any yet, so I decided to make my own Christmas version.

We have some good friends going home to UT for Christmas,
and I wanted to make them a fun, cute, gift that would make the drive easier.

This is what I came up with:

And here is how I did it:

-IBC Cream Soda Bottles (Washed & Dried)
-Spray Paint
-Scrapbook Paper
-Hole Punch
-Mod Podge
-Hot Glue Gun
-Silver Rings
-Printables (available only HERE)


1. Spray paint box the desired color and let dry.

2. Add scrapbook paper to the front, back, sides, and top (I only added it to the front and back using mod podge).

3. Then PRINT out Christmas Soda Labels found HERE. Cut out pieces.

4. Fill bottles with sweets.

5. Cut (6) 8.5×3 inch scrapbook paper strips. Add to Soda labels. Cut out large circle labels. Add large circles to soda bottles.

6. Add smaller circles to the top of the bottles on the lid.

7. Add larger circles to the bottles, by hole punching at the top and tying on with ribbon or tulle to a ring.

8. Add large santa printable to the front of the box.

Super cute and easy gift for your family, friends, or neighbors.

Hope you Like!!

And remember, come on over and say hi!
Would love to get to know you better. 🙂

XO - Kristyn

Thanks so much for sharing Kristyn!!


Fall Front Porches from the Experts at Balsam Hill

Fall Front Porches – Thanksgiving and Beyond

Your front porch might be a coveted feature around the neighborhood, and it’s a great place to pass an afternoon. Porches should create a welcoming and lasting impression, and the rich colors and general coziness of fall lend themselves perfectly to this goal! Our Balsam Hill decorating experts are here give you a few quick guidelines to make your fall front porch decorating simple and stimulating.

  1. Conceptualize. Start your project by considering your interests and what part of that interest you would like to incorporate into your design. For instance, if you love entertaining guests in your home, set aside a space for extra sitting room. Get ideas from magazines, the Web, your neighbors. Love to amble? Take a walk in a beautiful garden or tour a farm; these places of natural beauty are greatly inspiring. Whether simple or intricate, your concept will reveal part of your personality.
  2. Visualize. The next basic, yet vital, step is to envisage the whole picture of your design. Always consider the size of your porch when thinking of accessories and furniture. Do not overload your area with unnecessary decorations! Judge for yourself if your design is comforting and alluring. If you feel you have achieved the right look, then go to the next step.
  3. Actualize. To execute your design properly, first of all, clean and clear your area. Remove everything, from the old rugs to the dusty wreaths, and give the porch a good cleaning. This makes it easier to decorate, to visualize, and to move furniture around.
  4. Colorize. Your color choices will define your area and give structure to the larger picture of your theme. It is important to distinguish the dominant shades from the backgrounds and supporting colors. Your palette can be composed of your favorite hues, utilize colors that are in harmony with your home design, the colors of the season, or based around the architectural style of your home. For instance, a Victorian home will include deep, rich colors whereas a tropical home will have soothing sandy shades accented with lush greens and blues. A Tuscan look, on the other hand, utilizes earthy shades united with cool shades of blue and green, whereas a cottage will usually have lighter, softer pastel colors.
    For autumn, the popular preferences are warm colors like bright yellows, oranges, and vibrant reds. A dash of crimson can liven up a porch.
  5. Dramatize. Take away the boredom of your naked entrance door by adding a decorative wreath. Wreaths can be big, bold things: 48 inches of sunflowers, or a sturdy circle of berries, figs, and grapevines are striking and are natural representations of the harvest season! The rule is to choose elements which will fit your theme and your personal style.
  6. Accessorize. Embellishments complete the look of your front porch and set the tone of your entire creation. For instance, if it looks like something is missing in your design, the right style and placement of a simple mat may pull your design together. Traditional fall front porches are finished by a few pumpkins and colorful flowers placed at strategic spots around the porch.By the way, remember that the choice of accessories is just as imperative as the foregoing elements mentioned. For example, if you love a traditional look, choose planters, furniture, and accents that characterize the style.
  7. Minimize. Avoid clutter when using decorative elements. Anything in excess will lessen the beauty of your design.

Jessica Phan is a designer for a
purveyor of high-end artificial Christmas Trees. Living in the San Francisco Bay Area is perfect for her because she has a wide range of interests, including Art & Design, Fashion, Photography, Painting and Thrift Store Shopping.


Guest Post:: The Scrap Shoppe


Hello, A Glimpse Inside readers!!

I’m Michele, and I create at The Scrap Shoppe.

I’m excited to be here and help out Allison while she settles into her new house.

Such an exciting time!

Today I want to share a fun Christmas craft you can do with your kids and use in your holiday decor or give away as gifts come Christmas.

Salt Dough Handprint Ornaments!

So let’s get started on a tutorial…

I invited some of my girlfriends over for fun ornament making party so we could all experience this process together. It was a lot of fun to share this with them!

I gathered as many supplies as I thought we could possibly need for cutting and decorating our ornaments.

cookie cutters of all shapes and sizes
rubber and foam stamps
paint brushes
acrylic paint

I also set out baking pins, mats with parchment paper, and flour (for rolling).

To make the dough you will need

4 cups flour
1 cup salt

1.5 cups water
Start by mixing all three ingredients together with a large spoon. As it starts to thicken, start mixing with your hands. When it start to form the dough, knead it thoroughly for about 5-10 minutes. Add more water or flour in small amounts as necessary to get the right consistency (not sticky, but not too dry). You should be able to tell when you get there!

Roll your dough out until it is about 1/4″ thick.

With small children (think under the age of 1!) it will probably take two people to get a good handprint in the dough. One to hold the child and the other to keep the baby’s fingers straight and press into the dough. Older children will only need someone to help press their hands into the dough evenly.
If you have a cookie cutter (or cup or bowl) that is large enough to cut out the handprint, do so. If not, find a tool to use to cut a rough circle around the handprint. You certainly do not have to stick to round cookie cutters. Try a Christmas tree or Santa face for a more fun shape!

BE SURE TO POKE A HOLE IN THE TOP OF YOUR DOUGH IF YOU’RE GOING TO USE YOUR CUT OUTS FOR ORNAMENTS! You need to be sure you have somewhere to put the wire or ribbon so they can hang on the tree.

The dough can be a bit fragile before it is cooked so I would recommend taking the parchment paper you just cut the ornaments out on and placing it directly onto a baking sheet. You definitely need to use parchment paper as a buffer between the dough and the pan or there will be a lot of sticking.
You can see in the photo above that I tried out a lot of different shapes not even using the handprints. I thought while the dough was there I would try a few other things, too. 😉

Once you have all of the dough on a parchment paper lined baking sheet, pop it into a 350F oven for about 20 minutes.
Note: Your ornaments should feel fairly solid once you pull them out of the oven and let them cool for 20 minutes or so. If they don’t feel firm, put them back in the oven for another 5-10 minutes.

The baked handprint ornament looks pretty much just like raw version!

Now its time to get even more creative!
Decorate the ornaments!

My girlfriends were super crafty and made Santa faces with some of their ornaments.

I was little more lame and stuck to coloring the hands one color and the backgrounds another.

I also made a Christmas tree with everyone’s thumbprint.

Note: Some of my paint looks bubbled up because I actually stuck my ornaments back in the oven after I had painted them to harden them up some more. Learn from my mistake! Make sure they are hard before you paint them. 😉

You can label the back of the ornaments with a Sharpie marker.

Once all of the paint is dry, varnish the ornaments to seal the paint and further harden the ornaments.
Thread wire or ribbon through the hole in the ornament so you can hang them!

I love how our thumbprint tree turned out! This will be such a fun ornament for us to hang on our tree this year. This is actually two cookie cutter cutouts stacked on top of one another.

I’m going to use these little handprints as decoration on the grandparent gifts this year.

I think they’ll be a big hit!

And, of course, a pair are going to stay at my house as keepsakes. 🙂

Thanks so much for having me over today, Allison!

I would love for everyone to come visit me sometime!

Those are adorable Michele!
Perfect keepsake!


Holiday Open House Announcement

I have a little fun announcement to make.
I will be hosting the 2nd Annual Holiday Open House every Wednesday starting November 30th and continuing through the 21st of December.

What is a Holiday Open House you ask?

Well, I am sure many of you are like me and put up all of your Christmas decorations right after Thanksgiving (I bet many of you already have some up) and I want you to open up your house to all of us and share all your pretty things!

Here will be the schedule:

Week 1, November 30th:
Kitchen and Dining room decor

Week 2, December 7th:
Living Room Decor
Plus if you decorate in your kid’s rooms or a bonus room- show us that too

Week 3, December 14th:
Show us your Tree(s)!
(Include your favorite ornaments if you’d like!)

Week 4, December 21st:
Outdoor house decor

I threw this party last year on my blog and loved documenting how I decorated plus getting great ideas on how you all decorated as well.
Now, I know if I really liked something to do it again this year or change something up that I wasn’t too fond of.

I really hope you all will join me in the Holiday Open House fun!
The linky party will open up at 6 am November 30th! 🙂

BTW- Catch a Glimpse Party will go on like normal every Thursday.

Grab a button if you’d like!

holiday open house button

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Guest Post: Johnny in a Dress


Hey there!
This is me, Natalie!

I am a Christian, Wife and Mother. My days are spent doing different therapies with my son, who has Cerebral Palsy, and picking up after my daughter, whose favorite activity at the moment is to to see how fast she can wreck our entire house. At Johnny In A Dress, you will find crafty tutorials mixed in with glimpses of my day to day family life! Johnny In A Dress has become my journal and I am love for you to stop by!

I am so excited to be here today!
Allison is soooo sweet and A Glimpse Inside is one of my all time FAVORITE blogs!
Love it!

Ok, so, today I wanted to show you how to create a $2 Merry Christmas Plate! 

I fount this plate and “Merry Christmas” ornament at the dollar store!

Next I took the plate outside and sprayed it with water…
(I know this sounds super strange, but trust me!)

Then I got out my red spray paint and sprayed the plate… 

and took a paper towel and dabbed the plate to create the “mercury glass” look on the plate!
(sorry this pic is awful… it’s super hard to dab and take a pic at the same time)

I ended up with this:

After the plate was completely dry, I took it inside, got my E-6000 out and… 

put the glue on the back of the Merry Christmas ornament!
Then I stuck it onto the center of the plate and put a bag of drawer pulls on it!
(you don’t HAVE to use a bag of drawer pulls, anything with a little weight to it will work)

Then I ended up with this: 

Oh yea, and just to let you know, the Dollar Store has some cutie ornaments this year!
Thank you so much Allison for sharing your readers with me today!
Merry Christmas! 

Thanks so much for sharing your adorable plate Natalie!