Monday, December 31, 2012

Tippin' My Hat To 2012

I think it's normal at the end of each year to look back and reflect on all the crazy things that happened that year. At first I had trouble thinking of things, but then as I remembered one, another memory floated along until I got to the point that I realized a lot of things really did happen.

For one:

I had a non- human stalker

I came across box after box of insanely awesome photos of my grandparents when they were younger. My grandparents were my world, so this find is priceless to me

I tried out cross country skiing and LOVED it... my dad even surprised me with my own set for my birthday/ Christmas- this spoiled girl is stoked. I enjoy it for the same reason I enjoy hiking- it's a relaxing way to get out and enjoy the scenery

We put an offer in on a house. It was rustic and gorgeous and I still think about it. But we were overbid. That whole situation was a huge learning experience for me and had we won the bid, we never would have been able to rent the flippin awesome cabin we have now

For 12+ weeks I tried out the Happiness Trick... and I think I'm going to do it again

The hubs and I celebrated 4 years of marriage and 10 years of being together- time flies when you're with your favorite person

A bunch of my awesome clients sent me GORGEOUS photos from their weddings. Just one example

I discovered instagram and am now hooked

Brides wearing Silver Pencil products were featured in Weddingbells Magazine, Style Me Pretty, and Ruffled Blog

I made my first trek up to Big Sky, Montana to visit my little brother

I confided in you and spilled 10 things you probably didn't know about me... the second installment will be coming soon... don't fall asleep yet

Maverick broke out his musical skills to my terrible harmonica playing

I opened SP Home! A huge and incredibly rewarding experience thus far!

We discovered one of our new favorite places to camp

I flew out to California to be in my good friend's wedding and had an amazing time catching up with all the wonderful people I miss

There was a fire super close to our house

I discovered taking a drive is one of my fave things to do when I need a quick getaway

October was ca- razy busy

I moved into my favorite place I've ever lived- ever! This cabin

And I experienced the wonderful Griswald experience of cutting down our own Christmas tree

2012 has been good to me. We had some serious downs, but some uber amazing ups as well. What I'm most grateful for is that at this very moment- everyone is healthy. And I can only hope that when we get to this time next year, that I can say the same.

Happy New Year Everyone! See you on the flip side!

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Monday, December 24, 2012

Happy Christmas Eve!

Source: via Erin on Pinterest

Happy Christmas Eve! I just came in from walking around in the snow. We're getting dumped on right now and it's absolutely gorgeous out! 

I hope you all have a very Merry  Christmas!

Friday, December 21, 2012

To the Weekend!

This morning I woke up to two large elk walking through the snow in front of our house. It was gorgeous and serene... until Maverick started barking like crazy... elk, cows, horses- he likes to verbally communicate with all of these- lucky me.

Posting around here will be a little light until the New Year. But I have so many exciting posts coming then- lots and lots of beautiful weddings featuring gorgeous SP brides- and I'm also starting a series about our move- how we decided upon moving and where to go, the logistics behind it, and the pros and cons behind doing so. But until then, these last few days of  December are going to be spent prepping for wedding season in SP Bridal (so many engagements over the holiday season- including mine 5 years ago today!), Christmas celebrations with friends, and counting my blessings for everything we've been given. It's been an amazing year-  I'm so looking forward to 2013.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Monday, December 17, 2012

It's My Birthday!

Today I turn 28! And it's already wonderful. My husband made me a delicious birthday cake (yes... I asked if I could have some at midnight last night).  It's snowing like crazy outside. And I'm snuggled up inside my cabin. It's the perfect day. Can't believe how blessed I am.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Snow All Around Us...

The last few days we've been getting snow non stop and it's finally starting to feel like winter around here. Took a walk around the yard for proof...

I love winter...

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

How To: Make a Fresh Garland or Wreath

Today I have a little tutorial on how to make a beautiful and fragrant, fresh garland for your house. Growing up I always loved how my grandparents took random things from their yard and turned them into beautiful and useful decor for their house- whittled bamboo sticks turned into wind chimes, large plant leaves as serving platters, and painted pine cones during Christmastime- my Grandmother was the queen of using what she already had- and I always loved that she could make something so beautiful for zero amount of money.

Well, I wouldn't say my garland could win any awards. But the fact that I was able to add that little extra to our house during a time when we're on a very tight budget made me happy.

All you need are:

We have a pine that's experiencing severe overgrowth in our yard so I just sawed off two of the low branches and then sawed them into lighter, workable pieces.

Next, just start overlaying branches. I pretty much lined each one halfway up the other and then tied & knotted it a bunch with some twine. (I used green twine from the dollar store but you can use a brown one as well).

Because my branches were sort of heavy. I did the top layer of the garland first and secured that up. They apparently make great hooks that make hanging garland easier, but I wanted to use what I already had lying around. So I used a staple gun to secure a few staples along the top trim, laced twine in between them, and then tied the twine around the garland. This worked great and my garland hasn't fallen out of place once.

I then attached each of the sides from the top (letting them hang freely to the ground). Look how great the green twine blends in- you can barely see it

And you're done! Cheap, easy, and fast. I'd say the most difficult part was hanging the garland so ask someone to help to make it go faster- but still- if I can do it on my own- anyone can :)

When we got our Christmas tree, we had leftover branches so I used the same steps to make a wreath. Just instead of hanging the garland, I twisted it into a circle, tied if off with twine...

And then hung it with ribbon inside our cabin.

Let me know if you take this on yourself or have any questions!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Happy Weekend!

Happy Weekend All! I'll be spending mine working, baking, and trying to get our Christmas Cards created and ready to ship out.

Have an awesome weekend and see you back here next week!

Friday, December 7, 2012

Gift Guide for your Adventure Seeking Husband

Holiday Gift Guide Part 2:

For the man who climbs mountains, fly fishes after work, and loves fresh pow.

Personal Note Cards with a dark side, Warm Socks, A fancy, rustic shirt, Headphones for their music, Trail Running Shoes, A new fly fishing rod, A nice clean shave, Something to keep them warm,  An avalanche beacon for back country, A new pack for holding his board up the mountain, Warm baselayers

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Mountain Living Adventures: Cutting Down Our Own Christmas Tree

Although we've lived in the mountains of Wyoming a few years now, we've never cut down our own tree. Perhaps because we used to live in town or because it was just easier to pick one up in some random lot, but either way- we were totally missing out. Because it was so much fun! Even my husband (who's not a Scrooge when it comes to Christmas... but who's not giddy about all things Christmas like myself either) had a good time. 

We started off by going to the Forest Service and picking up a permit. All trees up to 12' are just $10- Hello savings! Danny & I usually spend upwards of $60 so this was awesome in itself. They gave us a map of all the forest areas still open to cutting and we headed out.

We tried a place about 20 minutes south of us and parked the car on a random road. I don't know what I was expecting: someone to check our permit, wave us in, people, a sign that said, "Christmas Tree Cutting Here!"- something- but there was only us. And besides the wind rustling between the trees, it was completely silent.

So we got out of the car and started hiking around the hills... looking for the absolute perfect tree.

It's not like a Christmas tree lot where they all kind of look the same save for a bare spot or two. These babies were all over the place

Don't mess with this guy- he has two saws... I don't know why... maybe he was planning on having me help... haha

And then after about a good 15 minutes- we saw it- the perfect Christmas tree. So Danny picked his favorite of the two saws, cut it down in less than 5 minutes, and started trimming some of the lower branches off (which I took for a wreath I'll be making)

He's such a good sport.

So we Danny strapped the tree to the top of our roof with a few tie downs and we were off. So easy!

Here's our tree in the house... fulfilling it's Christmas destiny (kudos to anyone who knows what show that's from)

Danny and I are definitely going to do this each year that we can. Because any activity where it's snowing, your toes are frozen, and you still have a really great time is worth doing again.

If you're interested in cutting down your own tree as well, call your local forest service office. They should be able to tell you if you can, the cost, and where to go. All you need is a hand saw and it's a great date with your friends, kids, or significant other.