Category Archives: Christmas

162 – A Christmas Wreath

So last night we stopped in at Canadian Tire so that Bryan could get some new shoelaces and so that we could buy some skates for Ginny. Sadly, they did not have the skates we needed. But! Bryan did find his shoelaces, and also snagged an AMAZING deal on a hockey helmet. And best of all, while he was trying on helmets, Ginny and I got to peruse the Christmas stock and oh boy. I was so excited. SO MANY THINGS ON CLEARANCE. GAH! I picked up a few goodies, including a cool geometric/gold tree, a festive table cloth, and some stocking stuffers, but the most significant item I found was a wreath.

The wreath was plain, just green branches and pinecones. Nothing special about it at all really, other than the fact that it was only $7. I found some adorable twine-ball lights (battery operated and $3) and wrapped them around the wreath. I LOVED the look of it immediately. This was how it looked set up and lit last night.


You may think I was being creative, hanging it on the curtain but it was the only place available. I tried hanging it on the front door but that made it so the door wouldn’t shut and we’re not the type of folks who like to just leave our door open. In the end, however, I really really love how this looks. SO MUCH.

This morning I was so pleased to walk out into a tidy living room and see this hanging up. However, I felt like it needed just one more element. We’re not putting up a tree this year, as we won’t be home for Christmas and honestly I didn’t want the hassle of putting it up and feeling disappointed once again that it’s so small (but there’s no point in getting a bigger one until we get a bigger place – or find an amazing deal). Anyways, because there’s no tree, that meant I have a bin of ornaments just collecting dust, so I decided to utilize some.

Growing up, my mom would purchase each of us a new ornament each year, and when the season ended she would tuck them away in individual bins labelled with our names. She also supplemented each bin with some older, random decorations that had accumulated over the years, all so when we grew up and left home we would have a homey start to our Christmas decorating. I love my little bin (minus the year I FOUND A DEAD CENTIPEDE IN IT – we called it Santapede), but I especially love that my mom put in a bunch of vintage wooden ornaments because they were some of my favourites growing up and I think they are just the cutest.

Obviously, since I’m rambling about them, the vintage ornaments are what I stuck in my wreath.


I love the look of it. It went from looking acceptably nice to, in my opinion, delightfully whimsical. It’s a perfect way to display these ornaments which are so special to me!

In other news, I did another DIY! I’ve been busy, apparently. So back in like…April, I bought a canvas (like painting canvas not just fabric) letter J to decorate as a wedding gift for some friends. I then promptly forgot about it forever. Yesterday I noticed it in the corner, watching me, and decided that it was time to do something. I had leftover spray paint from the wedding shower Quidditch hoops, so I sprayed the J.


This is my spraying set up. It is 100% less than ideal, but whatever. Also, I forgot about these other things I sprayed and they spent the night out there. Oops. Fortunately they’re scrap anyways that I’m just trying to revamp. I used a Rustoleum spray, by the way, which I can’t recommend more.

Next, and I didn’t take any photos of the progress because I was in a hurry, I painstakingly hot glued sequins to the J, and then used a toothpick to individually apply little tiny stars. It was really fun!! Here’s the finished product.


Coming up in a week or so, I’m hoping to do a Christmas craft featuring pennies, so stay tuned for that!

Also, here’s Ginny wearing a tree skirt. Just because.


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111 – Christmas Time

Christmas was REDONK. The plan was to have a quiet Christmas, just us Reilly 3 plus Phil. Christmas Eve we went out to church for the candlelight service which was beautiful as per usual, then we went back to the apartment for snacks and movies – How the Grinch Stole Christmas (classic one), and Home Alone. Phil went home for the night and Bryan and I went to bed. Morning arrived, I woke up Ginny, Phil came over, and we did gifts which was fun. Ginny was so excited. We skyped with my mom and dad, then the boys went and picked up some fast food for lunch while I got the turkey ready to go in the oven for dinner. After lunch, I had a delightful Christmas nap, and then I got up to finish making dinner (which was delish). Around 10:15, it was time to go with Phil to pick my sister up from her boyfriend’s house where she had spent her Christmas.


They surprised me!! My mom had kinda blown it a bit on Skype earlier that day, but I had ZERO INKLING THAT THEY WERE COMING RIGHT ON CHRISTMAS. How much was I not expecting it? I had anticipated sitting in Phil’s car without the need to get out, as we were just picking Sarah and up and going home. So I crammed my jammie pants (which are actually Bryan’s so they don’t fit right) into my boots, put a jacket on over a hoodie (also Bryan’s), and then wrapped my Ewok scarf around my head. I was dressed in optimal remaining in the car comfort, not pick up my parents at the airport attire. Anyways, it was a good surprise. I love my mom and dad and I hadn’t seen them since July 2014, so it was a long overdue visit. They booked a room at a hotel, so I didn’t have to worry TOO much about the fact that my apartment was a disaster zone – but I did still worry a bit because that’s who I am.

Boxing Day we all went over to Bryan’s folks’ house for a day of gifts and food and games. It was really awesome having both families together for the day. I’m endlessly thankful for the fact that our parents are friends.

The rest of my mom and dad’s visit was spent eating, hanging, watching movies, shopping, playing games, and just being silly which is our custom. Ginny was spoiled, of course, but nobody minds that. It was a GREAT Christmas, all told.

Behold, our family photos. The first we’d taken in AGES.


108 – Christmas Memories

I had a HUUUGE long post written before this one, wherein I recalled some treasured Christmas memories in detail. But…before I could finish writing it, the emotions connected to the memories hit me in the feelings and I couldn’t stop crying! And it wasn’t a bad thing, but it meant I had to stop writing, hahaha. So anyways, I’m just going to share photos now without the accompanying words, because pictures say so much anyways.