Thursday, December 30, 2010

Snowy Snapshots

I haven't really shared my love of photography with you on My Northwest Nest, but believe me, I love photography. So I jump at the opportunity to take a few snapshots of friends, family, nature, old buildings. You name it, I'll take a picture of it.
A few weeks ago my best friend, Cat, called and asked if I could take a few pictures of her family. Their beautiful baby girl is almost ten months old and they've never had family photos taken. I was honored to be able to take their first family shots. I'm not a fan of the traditional family portrait. "Tilt your head this way" "Say pickles." That's not my style. I like outdoors, different angles, on the floor types of family pictures. Luckily Cat isn't a fan of your average family picture either.
We agreed on outdoor pictures, the ground wasn't an option since it was covered in snow but we were able to capture some pretty great shots. Cat and her husband found a random road blanketed in fresh snow and the baby was sleeping so we hopped out of the cars and snapped a couple pictures of just husband and wife. A nice reminder that even though so much of their life is now all about baby, first they are husband and wife, the best gift they can give their precious little girl.
So here we go...
I love the way her red sweater and his red scarf pop against the snowy background. I was wishing I had a red umbrella for a prop but their red accessories worked perfectly.
This next one is one of my favorites. At least the editing I did, makes it my favorite of the happy couple. If you look at the picture below you see a couple walking down a snow covered road. But...
If you look now you see the deer up ahead to the right. I put the focus on the deer and softened the rest of the photo. I love it! And luckily so did my subjects.
We spend about twenty minutes getting pictures of just the two of them then the little one woke up and was ready for her picture.
Of course I couldn't pass up this opportunity. It was like she was peeking over Mommy's shoulder asking me to take a picture. So cute!
By no means am I even close to a professional photographer, but I'm pretty happy with how these turned out. More importantly my friends are happy with how they turned out.


Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Around the House

I just realized I never shared the Christmas decor around our house. Well, now it's time to take it all down so I thought I'd snap a few pictures before everything gets put away. I'll share it with you again next year... before Christmas. =o)
Dining room table centerpiece.
Just a stand on an end table in the living room.
Christmas card display.
The three wise men. One of my favorite decorations, made by a close family friend.
I also have a kitchen full of snowmen and a lantern full of ornaments on the front porch but unfortunately I don't have photo's of those right now. So as my seven year old would say, "You get what you get and you don't throw a fit."


Monday, December 27, 2010

Merry Christmas

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas with your loved ones. I most definitely did. We had a house full of company on Christmas Eve, twenty people filled the downstairs of our home throughout the afternoon and evening. Our house is not a very big one so it was a little crowded but every minute was memorable. On Christmas Eve we had appetizers, presents, a big ham dinner, Christmas Eve service, desserts and "holiday cheer."
Here's a peak at what our house was like Friday. Just imagine five different conversations going on and crazy kiddos squealing.
Lots of family.
And friends.
The whole group who stayed for dinner and church.
Christmas Eve with my best friend from high school. We haven't had Christmas together in ten years. So glad she's finally back home.
Yes, we do matchy Christmas pajama's. Our girls had so much fun with all the family and friends. We kept teasing our middle chick that she had crazy eyes. Too much dessert and fun.
And now Christmas morning, just the five of us.
Our morning was spent relaxing at home in our pajama's. It was fantastic. Just after lunch we packed up and headed down the road to my sister's house. My dad and his girlfriend and my mother and father-in-law met us there for more food and fun.
There you go, that was our Northwest Nest Christmas. We truly enjoyed our time with our families and friends. Now to clean up this mess.... Ugh!


Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Christmas Wreath

I realize it's been a few weeks since I said I was going to start my Christmas wreath and share it with you. Well, I'm not a complete procrastinator, the wreath is done. It has been for a while now, I just haven't taken any pictures to share with you. First I want to share with you my inspiration wreath.
I saw this wreath in a Lowe's Creative Ideas magazine (one of my favorite's.)
I absolutely LOVE this whole front door area. The black doors the wreath trio on either side. The simple garland with burlap wrapped around it. The swag on the door handle. L-O-V-E it!!
I've talked my inspiration up so much you'll probably be disappointed when you see my wreath. I can honestly say I'm a little disappointed too. I failed to get the poinsettia flowers to stick in the wreath. So my version is much more simple than Lowe's but you get the idea. So here she is...

My wreath cost a fraction of what Lowe's cost ($34.97.) I had the green wreath from Michael's, they usually cost around $ 5 and the green ribbon I paid about $2.50. The sparkley sprig was a couple dollars, the glittered R is actually a stocking ornament I picked up from WalMart for $1, the green ornaments were from WalMart also, I picked them up for multiple different projects (coming soon.) And I had the burlap in with my craft material. Not too bad. I'd say about $8 out of pocket for the whole wreath. And I didn't glue anything so I can use the everything again on another project.
Here's one more look.
Christmas blessings friends.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Christmas Frames

It seems I make a frame for someone every season/holiday. Christmas is no different. I whipped up some Christmas frames for my little chicks teachers. I've said it before and I'll say it again... these frames are SO easy! And quick to make.
I seriously put these together in about thirty minutes right before I had to leave for work on the night before the girls Christmas parties.
Here is what I used:
  • wooden frame from Michael's ($1)
  • Christmas scrapbook paper
  • craft paint
  • Mod Podge
  • sand sponge
  • letters & shapes from Cricut
I painted the edges of the frames red and white, including the inside of the frame opening. Use a little Mod Podge to apply scrapbook paper. Once the Mod Podge dried I used my sand sponge to smooth the edges. I applied the letters and shapes with another thin layer of Mod Podge and of course put one more thin layer on top of the whole thing.
For this frame I put a little extra bling on it. I applied rhinestone stickers to the little swirls on peace. I also brushed on extra Mod Podge on the inside of the frame opening and sprinkled it with white glitter.
Hope you like!


Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Scrabble Ornaments

I feel like I am so far behind the rest of the world when it comes to Christmas crafts. People have been showing off their cute projects for weeks and I'm just getting around to it. Better late than never, right?
The other day I dug out some extra Scrabble tiles and started pondering what I could make with all these letters. Ornaments, of course! I switched letters and made all sorts of different words. I finally decided on three different words for my own tree.
Here's what you'll need:
  • Scrabble tiles
  • hot glue
  • popsicle sticks
  • wire
  • raffia or ribbon (optional)
I arranged my letters in order and flipped them over for gluing. I used a popsicle stick to keep all the letters straight and flat.
I decided on using a pretty thick wire to hang the ornament with. For two reasons; One, it's what I had on hand and two, I like the way it looks better than a ribbon or ornament hook.
And my three words: Faith, Hope and Love.

I also made some ornaments for a few friends and neighbors but for the sake of surprise I'm not going to show you those.


Thursday, December 9, 2010

Decorating the Tree

Decorating the Christmas tree is such a huge tradition in most homes this time of year. I remember years as a child when decorating at our home was not like most homes. Remember I lived in this house until I was in the third grade. We had six people living in this farm house. There was no indoor bathroom, only cold water running off the mountain that had been plumbed to the kitchen sink and a wood stove was our only source of heat. The house wasn't big, but it worked. I remember a Christmas where we decorated a laundry basket instead of a tree, there just wasn't enough room for a big tree.Once my mom, step-dad, sister and I moved into a different home on the property we started going out onto our property on horseback looking for the "perfect" tree. Those were fun years!
Now that I live in suburbia, my Tall Man pulls on some slippers and a sweatshirt and goes to the garage to pull our tree down from the rafters. Not as adventurous but it works for us. Set up this year was a little different because we were given a bigger tree from some family so it was the first time assembling the 7.5 foot tall tree. I have to admit I sat on the couch and supervised while Tall Man and the little chicks put the tree together. It went much quicker than I expected.
As you know the lights go on first then time for the ornaments. Our tree has no theme, it hasn't for probably six or seven years now. Each of our girls get at least one new ornament each year, times that by three girls time nine years... that's a whole lot of princess ornaments! So our "non-theme" is a whole lotta little girl with a touch of mom and dad. Here are my favorites...
You may have noticed I like monograms.
Here are my girls new ornaments from my mom.
This is one of my favorite home made ornaments.
My oldest chick made this at AWANA one year.
A favorite given to us from some friends a couple years ago.
And of course a little something for the Tall Man.
Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and happy decorating!