Merry Christmas everyone! Gosh this month is flying by.. I can’t believe it’s almost Christmas. This time last year it was snowing and really helped bring in the festiveness of the season, and this year it’s super mild, and raining.. a lot, dang! – Because I freaking LOVE snow days! How quiet everything seems, how it makes everything bright, and cozy.. Plus I’m a homebody- so any excuse to stay home with my people- I’m alll in.
It’s really neat to be celebrating our tenth Christmas as parents, creating new memories and diving in to those old traditions passed down from each of our own families.
On Christmas morning, the kids come into our bed with their stockings and open them there (while I sip on coffee and baileys)
Then we head downstairs and have chocolate croissants (Literally just the pilsbury ones, rolled up with chocolate..)  I’ve thought of making them a little fancier over the years, but it’s how my Mom used to make them when we were growing up,  and it just wouldn’t feel the same to change that now.
The night before I make “Wife saver” – A recipe passed down from Steve’s Mom and a new one from one of my favourite Christmas movies “The family stone” (The casserole Sarah Jessica Parker tries to make for the family) They’re great because they can be made the night before and tucked right into the oven while you’re still unwrapping presents. I’ve attached the recipe right after this pic 🙂

 

Morton Family Strata:

INGREDIENTS

  • 8slices white bread
  • 8ounces mozzarella, sliced
  • 14ounces tomatoes, sliced
  • 6-8 fresh mushrooms
  • 1medium onion thinly sliced into rings
  • 5 eggs
  • 3cups milk
  • 1teaspoon salt
  • 1teaspoon oregano
  • 1pinch garlic salt
  • Parmesan cheese
  • black olives, sliced
DIRECTIONS
  1. Using a cookie cutter, donut cutter or lid from a jar, cut bread into shapes or circles. Set aside.
  2. Place bread scraps in bottom of buttered 13″ by 9″ baking dish. Layer half of the cheese over bread.
  3. Arrange half of the tomatoes and all of the onion rings and mushrooms over the cheese. Cover with the rest of the cheese.
  4. Arrange the bread shapes on the cheese. Put slices of the tomato in the center of each bread shape.
  5. Combine slightly beaten eggs, milk, salt, oregano and garlic salt. Pour over the bread.
  6. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and dot with olives. Cover. Refrigerate for 6 hours or overnight.
  7. Bake 1-1/2 hours in a 325 degree F oven, or until knife comes out clean. Let stand for 5 minutes or until firm.
 


Anyways, I love traditions and can’t wait to celebrate them all, the countdown is ON!
I love decorating our home for Christmas and I followed the 
same vibes as last year – Where I used a lot of greenery that I found in our backyard, kept it simple and just added a few new pieces to add to the collection. Plus- got rid of some of the older things I had been holding onto because my motto is always “What comes into this house must come out” Too much clutter and stuff sitting in my storage stresses me right out.

This year, Pottery Barn contacted me to work with them to decorate and photograph my mantle with their beautiful Christmas line (I linked everything at the end of this post) and it’s funny because some of you may not know this, but I started this whole blogging thing by accident. It definitely wasn’t something I had planned or set out to do, so theres been a whole heck of a lotta figuring it all out as I go.
When the email came through, I literally had a moment where I was looking around like..”Me?! little ol Michele Phillips from Abbotsford?”  Hope I got this haha!

 

 

 

Ok you guys, I have a easy DIY/ hack I gotta share with ya’ll.. I posted a little about this on IG the other day but I’ll try to give more details here:

So my girlfriend Kim came up with this hack and obv. I stole the idea because it’s just too good!
Grab those cheap faux greenery garlands and wreaths.
Grab some real greenery from your backyard (In our area  it’s easy to find)
And to make it extra special you can head to your local florist and grab:
*Juniper bush
*Eucalyptus
*Seeded Eucalyptus
*Pine tree
*Anything else that may catch your eye and will look ok when it starts to dry-out.
I grabbed these pale purple/white flowers- but I don’t even know what they’re called -Hah!

I literally just tuck them into the faux wreath/garland and it sticks because it’s pre-wired. I don’t over think it, and the best part about creating something is that there are no rules and it doesn’t have to be perfect, you’re allowed to make mistakes.

To hang the garland I used zip ties with a cotton ball so that it didn’t wreck my railing, but then a sweet follower sent me to a link for some that are flexible and made specially for this
Link HERE
So I’ll definitely be buying some of those next year.

You all know I love a good ol charcuterie board so I love this new book by @LisaDawnBolton

I found some beautiful dark green bows from Canadian Tire this year. I can’t find them online though, darn!
I hung the wreath with Command hooks, it’s been up for 2 weeks now and worked really great so that it didn’t wreck my oven hood. For those that don’t know, command hooks are hooks with a removeable sticker that doesn’t rip the paint off your walls/ things. Life changing!

So this is the first year we ever put a tree in our room. We went to my girlfriends Christmas tree farm (Ledgeview tree farm) and had already pre-ordered a flocked tree from her, but wanted to give the kids the whole tree farm experience, so we just started walking around and then of course, Levi found the perfect tree and we just couldn’t say no. I just LOVE it! We already had an old tree stand, etc..  so all I did was pick up an inexpensive box of mixed bulbs and a few large faux flowers from Homesense and called it a day.
I love how it lights up our room in the evening, smells amazing and my favourite thing to do is drink coffee in bed, so it really makes my mornings a little brighter <3


The flocked tree on the main floor

This year I added these peach flowers to my decor to switch it up just a little.

 

The kids each have a little mini tree in each of their rooms, and it’s where Santa leaves their stockings on Christmas eve

 

You guys may have seen on IG that we just got our woodshed / Dog house delivered. We had drawn-up some drawings and designed it with a local company called “Mini Built Structures” We had actually ordered our first shed from them 10 years ago, and Steve refers them to all his farmers, too.
We have been so happy with the quality of work and it’s just so neat that it can be custom designed,  moved, and delivered to your house.
Steve is wiring it all so that it has power and heat in the dog house, then we will shiplap the whole thing inside and add a upper level loft for the cats to hang out on.
Since we live out in the woods,  and on property, our animals are a working part of the family and need to have access to the outside to chase off Bears, coyotes and help keep down the mouse population.
We just love our little fur babies so much!
P.S: We are ordering a DNA test for our adopted pup- Lilac and can’t wait to find out what she is! What do you guys think?

Shed exterior is: Sherwin Williams “Alabastor White”  and door is a pale purple “Winter grey” by Benjamin Moore (Inspired by our Lilac pups name)

 

We didn’t do a lot on the exterior this year, and I never got around to hanging the wreaths over the windows.. But @ThebouquetFarm made me a custom front door pot, and when I put it out I felt like the space needed one more, so I made another from the things I found from around outside. She also made me a square wreath- A nice traditional twist.

 

A few of my kids favourite toys and things you’ll find under my tree this year-
Choose express shipping and Amazon prime and it’s here for christmas!

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Christmas, and the real reason for the season can sure get lost in the hustle and shuffle of it all.
I’m really trying to stop, remember and teach our little ones the true reason for Christmas Day.
I’ve had this song on repeat this season, the words just get me.

Merry Christmas to you all!!
XO, Michele

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