... and a happy new year!

We wish you a merry christmas and a happy new year!

So I'm a little late on the christmas part, but I just had to pop in and spread some Christmas love! Hope y'all are enjoying some merriment this week or spending the day on the couch like I am today.

Happy Christmas and Happy 2013!!


Amazing christmas card above made by my pal, Justine, isn't it pretty!?


Christmas Decor!

So, I think it's safe to say I'm in Christmas crunch time. No matter what I do it always seems to sneak up on me. I'm not going to lie, I had been feeling a bit overwhelmed with my to-do list but, needless to say, things are starting to look a lot like Christmas around here and I am so ready to hang out and relax with my family.

Bring on Christmas!

Christmas Mantel

Just like last year's mantel, I decided to keep it pretty simple reusing stuff I already had and throwing in a few cheap, crafty bits. I had purchased a huge pack of glitter ribbon from home sense a while back and decided it was going to be a very sparkly christmas!

I love how the glitter/kraft paper garland turned out, I had good intentions to create more for the tree but didn't get around to it, so there's just a teeny, tiny section. You can imagine it woulda looked great, right??

Christmas Decor

Happy almost Christmas to you!


That Scary Guy Named Santa

This year's trip to Santa wasn't quite so well received as last year...

This was the best we could get after Alice screamed bloody murder and wouldn't even consider sitting on this guy's lap. I love the unimpressed/terrified look on her face and how she's leaning as far away as possible. Poor girl.


Happy almost Christmas to you!! You ready?


Want, Need, Wear, Read: For Her

As I mentioned in this post, we are attempting to simplify Christmas this year by implementing the 'four gift rule' - something they want, something they need, something to wear, and something to read.

Last up are some gifts for the ladies, all of which look pretty similar to things you might find on my wish list (shocking, I know). I'm not sure the last time I ever bought socks for myself... that's always been Santa's job. It just isn't Christmas without a brand new pair of socks, they are definitely a need in my books.


So that wraps up the four gift guides, be sure to check out the ones for girls, boys and the guys. Also, you can find the whole list of goodies on pinterest here.

Are you all ready for Christmas? I think I need to stop virtual shopping and get myself to a mall, STAT.

Happy Shopping!


Want, Need, Wear, Read: For Him

As I mentioned in this post, we are attempting to simplify Christmas this year by implementing the 'four gift rule' - something they want, something they need, something to wear, and something to read.

I don't know about you guys, but Christmas means board game season for this family. We were introduced to Cards Against Humanity last time my sis-in-law was in town and it is FUN. Described as "a party game for horrible people", this game is sure to spice up your family gathering. If you've ever played Apples to Apples, it's sorta like that only for adults.

Check it out along with my other four gift picks for the guys...

Want, Need, Wear, Read: For Him
WANT: Cards Against Humanity* NEED: Daily Planner WEAR: Patterned Socks READ: Winter of the World* by Ken Follett (I secretly want this for me, loved the first book in the series)

Be sure to check out the four gift guides for girls and one for boys.


*amazon affiliate links

Around Here...

christmas crafting, someone is NOT a fan of the snow, favourite ornaments from Mike's baba, budding artist, my poor sickie, dining room office, it's going to be a sparkly christmas!, at work before the sun, back-to-work essentials.

Super crazy real life means slightly less documented photo life lately, things always looks so much calmer in those nine frames ;)


find me on instagram. username: justbellablog

Want, Need, Wear, Read: For Boys

As I mentioned in this post, we are attempting to simplify Christmas this year by implementing the 'four gift rule' - something they want, something they need, something to wear, and something to read.

First up were the girls and today is some inspiration for the little man in your life...

WANT: Plan Toys Build a Robot* NEED: Dwell Studio Galaxy Dust Duvet
WEAR: Stars Shirt & Bowtie READ: This is Not My Hat
 by Jon Klassen

And some people say boys are no fun to shop for? pfft.

Check out the four gift guide for girls here.


*amazon affiliate link

Want, Need, Wear, Read: For Girls

Don't tell Alice, but we didn't get her anything for Christmas last year. I mean she was just over a month old, already spoiled with gifts, and pretty much just happy lying on the floor staring at the tree lights. Things are so much different this year, she's so fun, interactive and really into ripping paper, I knew things could get out of hand...

So, in an attempt to simplify gift giving I'm implementing the 'four gift rule' - something they want, something they need, something to wear, and something to read. I wish I could give credit to this genius idea, it's been floating all over pinterest and I can't really pin down an original source. I'll just thank the internet for the great idea - thanks, internet.

And if you're anything like me and just looked at the calendar wondering where on earth November went (so much for getting all my shopping done) here is some simplified gift giving inspiration to help you out. First up, the little girls...

Want, Need, Wear, Read: For Girls
WANT: Plan Toys Tea Set NEED: Aden & Anais Sleep Sack (on sale!) WEAR: Glitter Lace Shoes (on sale!) 
READ: The Heart and The Bottle*, by Oliver Jeffers

Super easy, right?

What's your plan of attack for Christmas shopping?


*amazon affiliate link.

Back to Work & Proud Mommy Moment

So, last Wednesday was my first official day back to work... definitely a bittersweet moment. That and a sick little babe, it's safe to say it was a crazy week. It was so weird (and kinda nice) to sit in one place, uninterrupted, all. day. long. Definitely a huge change of pace. I'm back to work part time and hoping we strike some sort of balance, with the whirlwind of last week it's too early to tell. How on earth do you full time working moms ever get anything done??

I'm so thankful we are blessed here in Canada with a year long maternity leave, I treasured (and still do) every day I get to spend with my girl*, especially moments like this...

Walking is still not her #1 mode of transportation but she's almost there. Go, Alice, go!


* I'm realizing, after today's full day of whining, that I might also come to appreciate the peace and quiet of my office every now and then ;) I still love you, honey.