Really cool and fun

November 20, 2008 § 1 Comment

You might remember this post from last year.   Straight No Chaser’s very cool rendition of The 12 Days of Christmas  give it another listen it is well worth it.

Apparently after their video went “viral” last year they got notice by Atlantic records, were reunited and cut an album.  Check out the story.

I saw it first over at the Anchoress and I know others like Fr Kyle have linked into it.  I feels good to be doing a little, very tiny part to help these great musicians get noticed – because when a lot of us share what we love very occasionally it makes a difference.   Viva la Power of the Internet.

Holiday Grand Plan Week Thirteen.

November 20, 2008 § Leave a comment

The Official Holiday Grand Plan started on August 31.  In order to accommodate the Advent season I have started earlier, and I hope to have everything in order and ready for a calm and spiritual Advent season.

This week the I am focusing on the Kitchen.  This is totally out of order, but I really need to back up to the kitchen and do a good turn through it and take inventory for the Christmas cooking.  

Last Week’s follow up: I will have the checklist for sorting up soon, God willing.  I bought four new Christmas children’s books for the book basket.

Week Twelve: Cleaning:  The Official Holiday Grand Plan has the kitchen listed on week six.  I like having it closer to the Holidays.  My goals in the kitchen are to do a good clean out of the fridge and freezer, cull the baking supplies, check the pantry and make a final shopping list for the items I will need for the holiday baking.  Don’t forget the cleaning list for the Kitchen.

Preparing for the Holidays: This weekend is the weekend we are making sure the lights work.  I bought my Advent candles already.  Cards should be ready to go by the end of next week. 

Planning:  The Offical Grand Plan has recommendations for this week.  My list is a little different since we started a couple weeks earlier. 

Gifts: I need to make a trip to get some fabric for the boys.  This week I want to get one good shopping trip in. 
Cards:  Still working on my cross stitch cards.  I need to check labels for mailing.
Parties: This week I am doing the first plans for our Christmas eve shin-dig.
Menus: The menu for Christmas eve and what we are bringing to Thanksgiving.
Decorating:  Got those Advent Candles, plan for crafts that will be decorations.  The thanks giving goodies go up this weekend.
Baking: I need to get anything that I don’t have after going through the kitchen. 
Devotionals: I picked up some items for Advent devotionals/crafts.  Later today or tomorrow I will have my Advent page up with our devotionals. 
Traditions: We have new books.  I am looking through to decide which night we would like to go to the Grotto and Zoo lights.  We have a couple parties booked.  St Nicholas day celebrations.  Lot’s of things starting to show up on the calendar.

Advent Video

November 18, 2008 § Leave a comment

My friend  Jennifer  has this posted at her blog.  It came out through our homeschool list and it really goes into what I want to do this Christmas season.

Holiday Grand Plan Week Twelve.

November 12, 2008 § 1 Comment

The Official Holiday Grand Plan started on August 31.  In order to accommodate the Advent season I have started earlier, and I hope to have everything in order and ready for a calm and spiritual Advent season.

This week the I am focusing on the Dinning Room and the Children’s rooms.  My dinning room is very straight forward so there isn’t a ton of cleaning there.  Normally I would have done the children’s clothing at the middle of October, but this has slipped a month.  This is a good time to go through the children’s toys and toss/donate anything that isn’t played with.  

Weeks before follow up: The past two months have thrown me completely off task, life happens.  This is almost a restart so I have to take a little time to evaluate where I am this week.

Week Twelve: Cleaning:  The Dinning Room  page at the original Holiday Grand Plan is very helpful.
Children’s rooms: the Grand Plan cleaning page is a good place to start.  The main goal this week is to get all the summer clothing/too small/torn, stained and otherwise clothing out of the children’s drawers.  I am rather ruthless in this.  I developed a checklist for the children’s clothing that I use to “prune back” to and by following it I save myself a great deal of work in laundry and clothing maintenance.  I also want to go through the children’s toys.  As they grow they do out-grow certain things, some thing break, others aren’t played with.  By pruning the toys not only do I make room for the Christmas gifts that will soon be coming, but I create a great deal of sanity in my life.

Preparing for the Holidays: This week I am looking for some new holiday books.  We will pull the decorations up from the basement and double check what is working, broken, missing etc.   The goal is to have holiday gifts done by the first week in December. 

Planning:  The Offical Grand Planhas recommendations for this week.  My list is a little different since we started a couple weeks earlier.  The USPS had a Holiday Planner for mailing gifts.  Check it out.  If you are mailing gifts over-seas these need to be going out right now.  (USPS suggests last week for gifts for overseas troops).  We are finalising our Thanksgiving plans.

Gifts: I have fabric for the girls Santa Jammas  I need to make a trip to get some fabric for the boys. 
Cards:  Still working on my cross stitch cards.  I need to double check my mail list and order stamps.
Parties: No planning for parties this week.
Menus: No Holiday menu planning this week.
Decorating: Taking down the Halloween decorations and checking the lights and decorations.
Baking: The stores are starting to offer holiday baking items, it is a great time to stock-up.  This week we need to purchase any needed containers for freezing and gift giving. 
Devotionals: We got our Advent candles from our Little Flowers group.
Traditions: Checking the needed items for our wreath and Advent decorations..

Back to planning for Advent and Christmas

November 12, 2008 § Leave a comment

After taking an insanely long break I am returning to the Holiday Grand Plan posts.

Holiday Grand Plan Week Four.

September 16, 2008 § 1 Comment

The Official Holiday Grand Plan started on August 31.  In order to accommodate the Advent season I have started earlier, and I hope to have everything in order and ready for a calm and spiritual Advent season.

This week is the post for week four, delayed but not forgotten.

This week the Master Bedroom is getting a good cleaning.   

Week Two follow up: The past two weeks have been a bit “up in the air” for me with us starting schooling and with Kyle being gone.  So far so good though.  The cleaning schedule is going well and the planning is starting to really take shape.

Week Three: Cleaning:  The Master bedroom.  Since the children aren’t allowed to play in our room it is the cleanest and most organised room in our home.   Easy week this week.

Preparing for the Holidays:  If you are going to order Christmas cards this is a good time to starting thinking about that.  We are looking at getting family pictures made later this month.  It is a good time to get a photo sitting, it takes time to get photos back and near the holidays appointments are at a premium.

Planning:  The Offical Grand Plan has recomendations for this week.  My list is a little different since we started a couple weeks earlier.

Gifts: I have a list and am checking it twice.  I want to sew pajamas this year.  The fabric stores are getting in their holiday fabrics and the craft stores are stocking up as well.  I will start the purchasing for gifts to buy in two weeks. 
Cards: This week I start working on my cross stitch cards.
Parties: No planning for parties this week.
Menus: No Holiday menu planning this week.
Decorating: No decorating this week.
Baking: I have my cookie and candy lists and I am starting to watch for sales for thing I will need. 
Devotionals: We are considering a Jesse Tree this year – I have a couple websites that I have been looking at for this.  I want to have an Advent Calendar, an Advent Wreath and an Advent Chain – I purchased a calendar last year that will be useable this year.  We have the items for the wreaths and the chain.  I would like to print out prayer books for the Advent Season – I am keeping my eyes open for art work for these.
Traditions: Nothing really planned for this week.

Things keep moving along. Next week I will start adding in some of the fall plans (whoopee).

Holiday Grand Plan Week Three.

September 4, 2008 § 3 Comments

The Official Holiday Grand Plan starts on August 31.  In order to accommodate the Advent season I have started earlier, and I hope to have everything in order and ready for a calm and spiritual Advent season.

We had a fantastic trip last weekend and we have started schooling again.  This is the third week for the Grand Plan, The Entry/Foyer week.  Since my house is a little different than the Grand Plan I am also adding my laundry room to the list. 

Week Two follow up: My time away gave me a chance to think about the Questions from last week.   I made notes in my planner to help me keep our goals in mind.  We want to be sure that this year we emphasise the spiritual and play down the material, focusing on “special times” not “special things”. 

Week Three: Cleaning:  The entry/foyer/laundry room is my focus this week. 

Preparing for the Holidays:  Check out the holiday prep items.  This week I am making plans for the holiday baking.  Each year I like to make six types of cookies and three candies.  By deciding what we will make this week I can keep my eyes open for sales and stock up on the good stuff when it goes on sale.  I also need to check my craft supplies to see if there is anything I have on hand that should be used so I am not buying what I own.

Planning:  The lists continue to get fleshed out as I work on them.

Gifts:  I am starting to think of specific gifts for the people on my lists. 
Cards: I need to get patterns for the cross stitch cards and then start looking into cards for the rest of my list.
Parties: We will be doing our Christmas eve party.  I am still thinking about how we want to do this.
Menus: I want to have some freezer meals made for when things get a little nutty near the holidays.
Decorating: Everything seems to be in good shape from last year.  I haven’t checked the lights, but I will do that once they go on sale again.
Baking: I need the cookie and candy list finished. 
Devotionals: We are considering a Jesse Tree this year.  I want to have an Advent Calendar, an Advent Wreath and an Advent Chain.  I would like to print out prayer books for the Advent Season.
Traditions: Are we going to need tickets for special events? When do they go on sale? which things do we definitely want to do?  Still working on this.  Zoo lights and maybe the Nutcracker with my mom.

Again I have to keep reminding myself that the goal isn’t to blow Chritmas bigger it is to make the planning easier.  Hope everyone has a great week.

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