Friday, December 14, 2018

Five on Friday - Holiday Dresses Under $50

*This post may contain affiliate links, which means at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through or make a purchase.

Christmas week is almost here, y’all!  If you’re anything like me you plan waaaay ahead when it comes to what you’re going to wear, but sometimes things are so hectic this time of year, it’s pretty easy to drop the ball.  If you’re looking for some last minute ideas for parties, church, or even New Year’s Eve, I have you covered today!  These are all under $50 (most are actually under $30!) and best of all, they all qualify for FREE two-day shipping with a Prime Membership (get yours here) so you can have them super fast.

B and I attend a ball every January, so I actually decided to do this post to a) help anyone who may be looking for last-minute outfits, and b) get your opinions on ideas for what I should wear to the ball!  Some of them are too casual to be ball contenders, but of the dressier ones, let me know which ones you like!

O N E – Classic

I fell madly in love with this dress at first sight!  It’s actually one piece, but I love how it looks like a skirt with a top.  AND IT HAS POCKETS!  It's taking every ounce of self-control for me to not buy this RIGHT NOW.

This 50s throw-back is classic, but I love how it was modernized with the cut-out at the neck.

Little black dress with a touch of lace, anyone?

This is another one-piece dress that looks like a two-piece!  And it comes in so many fun colors and patterns and it has pockets, too!!  It's also a best seller on Amazon and highly rated.  This one is taking self-control, too!  I'm seriously considering purchasing it for Christmas card pictures for next year!!  It's less than $30!  

T W O – Cocktail

I love the high-low on this dress and the touch of lace on the top.

Lace all over and an off-the-shoulder scalloped neckline makes this one stand out.

I love red and this little dress here is so fun!

T H R E E – Glam

This is one that I’m considering getting for our ball.  I love it SO much.  It looks like it would be so flattering since the waist is cinched and it looks like a million bucks!  But it’s only $27.99.  This is why I love Amazon, y’all!  What a time to be alive!

And this dress… oh my word.  This would be my number one choice for the ball if it wasn’t so much!!  I know I said that the dresses in this post were all under $40, but I couldn’t help but throw this one in because it’s so gorgeous.  Sadly, I just can’t justify paying that much for a dress I’ll likely only wear once.  BUT LOOK. HOW. PRETTY.

This dress looks like a dupe for a dress that came out either last year or earlier this year.  I remember seeing it all over my Instagram feed and all over the big fashion bloggers’ websites.  I loved it from the start, but would have never paid that much for it.  Well, this dupe is only $29.99, y’all!!  And it also comes in lots of colors just like most of the other dresses in this post.

F O U R – Low-Key

This dress is perfect for church or any fairly informal party.  I actually have one almost identical to this one in red and I wore it last year for Christmas mass.  I got so many compliments on it and I’ll probably wear it to Christmas mass again this year!  It comes in lots of colors.

Okay, I know some people might think this dress is a little questionable, but y’all, I think the print is SO FUN!  And it’s a swing dress… y’all know how much I love those!  They’re so comfy I wear them all the time.  This would be a fun, festive dress to wear while Christmas shopping or going to a Christmas parade or a Christmas tree lighting or any other type of casual Christmas event!  And yes, it also has pockets.  ;o)

I couldn’t decide which category to put this dress into because this is one of those that looks like it could be dressed up for a cocktail party or dressed more conservatively for church.  What do y’all think?

F I V E – Sparkly

B and I don’t really ever attend any New Year’s Eve events anymore (although, now that the kids are getting older, I wouldn’t mind doing that again sometime) but I always enjoy perusing all of the fun gold, sparkly dresses that I would wear if we did.  This first dress is another one that I would LOVE to wear to our ball in January, but it’s still a little more than I would like to spend.  But isn’t it STUNNING?

This one is perfect for a fun evening out but it also looks comfy!

And if you really want to WOW everyone on NYE, this one is AH-MAZING.  I love the v-back! 

So which ones are your favorites?  Which ones should I consider for the ball?

B and I are having another Day Date today to finish up Christmas shopping and I'm going to try to do a little Day in the Life in my Instagram Stories, so be sure to follow me on there so you can follow along with us!

*Linking up with A Liz Adventures and Carolina Charm for Five on Friday, A Little Bit of Everything for Friday FavoritesMeet @ the Barre for Friday Favorites, and Cup of Tea for High Five for Friday.

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Christmas Home Tour 2018

*This post may contain affiliate links, which means at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through or make a purchase.

It’s Christmas Home Tour day!  If you saw my Christmas Bucket List then you may know to expect a little something different for our home tour this year.  Since B and I got married eleven years ago, I have always decorated primarily with dark red and gold, but for the past few years I’ve been trying to replace the dark red stuff with bright red and the gold stuff with white.  This year, I finally finished the transition and the end result is perfection!  It has helped brighten our decorations overall and I think the red and white is just so much more whimsical than the traditional dark red and gold.  And if you want to see my decorations from last year to compare, they are here.

Another change we made was to step up our outdoor Christmas décor.  The kids have been begging for a Christmas inflatable, so we finally caved this year and bought this $29 9-foot Santa from Walmart.  It's currently out of stock, but they do have this one if you're looking for one.  We also added lights to all of the bushes per the kids’ request and now we have our very own winter wonderland!

Welcome, y’all!

When you walk through the front door, this is the view:

When you look to the right, you’ll see the formal dining room that we only use a handful of times each year.  It’s decorated pretty much the same as it has been for the last three or four years, but I borrowed four of the white snowflake placemats and four of the white napkins to use at the kitchen table.  I kind of like how every other place setting in the dining room is now different.  It adds a little bit of interest.

I removed all of the gold balls from the Christmas tree this year and replaced them with some gorgeous knit garlands from Crate & Barrel.  They were half off on Black Friday so I was able to get a great deal on them!

I finally found some stockings that I adore, and I was able to replace the old dark red and gold Walmart stockings that we have had for the past eleven years.  I have to admit I was a little sad getting rid of them after all of these years, but I reminded myself that I had originally purchased them knowing that I would replace them a few years down the road when I found something of better quality.  I also spray painted all of our stocking holders and the reindeer white.  They were gold before, but as I said before, I was getting tired of the gold.  I cannot even tell you how much I love the white down here!

We put the Christmas props basket out yet again because the kids love to play with them this time of year, but instead of having them on the coffee table I moved them over near the entertainment center to make room for… our old Christmas cards on the coffee table! 

This past year I finally took the time to clean out my old keepsakes, and part of that job also meant organizing our Christmas cards.  I just hole-punched each of them, added a tag at the front with the year, and used a binder clip to hold them together by year.  They are nestled in a gorgeous gold wire basket that I found at Walmart for all of $1.50 and I could not love this display more!  And the Christmas card basket is full, so when I add the 2018 cards at the end of this year, I’ll have to start using a second basket… I already have another one waiting in the wings!

The other side of the coffee table holds my favorite tray (it's absolutely gorgeous in person) with the usual plant and stack of books, and then I added a Christmas present for a little pop of fun.

Our seasonal book crate is stuffed full with all of our favorite Christmas books, and it sits right in the living room at the kids’ fingertips so they can read any time they want.

The banisters on the stairs are wrapped with garland and this year I ditched the dark red ribbon that I normally add and replaced it with red and white berries.  I’m not completely sold on the red and white berries, though, so I may end up doing something more elaborate next year.

I put out our usual gold foil trimmed snuggly blanket (one of my most coveted Walmart finds from several years back) and I also changed out our every day pillows with my red, ruffled ones that I love so much.

Moving into the dining room… one of my favorite things to decorate… THE BAR CART!  It houses my beloved letter board and all of the essentials for our holiday drink-mixing – wine, cranberry vodka, Goldschlager, Tito’s, Cherry Rum – and a bunch of fun accessories – festive champagne glasses, glittery coasters, red and green paper straws, holiday napkins, and M&Ms.  I also framed our Christmas card for this year to keep on display, and my beloved letter board is also housed here. 

I typically do some sort of elaborate hand lettering on the chalkboard above the bar cart, but I just didn’t have time for that this year, so I did the next best thing and I made it look like a wrapped present.  Took all of 15 minutes!

The décor on the buffet table in the kitchen is decorated the same as always, but I changed out all of the decorations on the tiered tray.  Bottle brush trees, anyone?

I also added a red bow and red ribbon to the wreath that always hangs on our pantry door.

The kitchen table is typically set with gold placements and the same red poinsettias, but as I said before, this year I swapped the gold placemats for the white snowflake placemats and white napkins that I normally put in the formal dining room.  (And the white placemats are on clearance right now!)  I love it so much!  This is one of my favorite little areas in the whole house this year!

The kids made gingerbread houses a couple of weeks ago and those have been on display on our kitchen island… although, somebody (not naming any names) has been picking the candy off of theirs so it’s looking a little bare.  Also, how long is too long to leave sugary sweet stuff out like this?  Should we have thrown them away by now?  Lol.

I always keep a Christmas candle burning on the island as well and it always leaves our house smelling amazing!

The JOY marquee is in its same place on the kitchen counter this year, but I did have something new to decorate this year… my metal tray.  I just swapped the fall dish towel for a Christmas one, swapped the pumpkins for a Christmas gift, and moved my gorgeous Platters and Boards book over there. 

The coffee bar looks about the same this year as well, but there are a few new additions – the Mini Marshmallows dish and the Peppermint Chips dish were on clearance at Hobby Lobby and I got them for practically nothing.  I also finally lucked out and found some Rae Dunn stuff at our local Marshall’s and I couldn’t resist this Merry mug… only $5.95!

I hung our card hanger on the closet door under the stairs in the kitchen again and I love it there.  Our trashcan and other things we use daily are in there, so it gives me an excuse to look at the cards a lot.  At the time of photographing the house we hadn’t received that many cards, but we’ve added many more since then, and by the time Christmas comes, the whole thing is always full!

Here’s a look back from the kitchen into the living room… this is one of my favorite views in the entire house because you can see pretty much all of the lights in the house from one vantage point.  Love love love.

Moving upstairs, here is the view that I look at pretty much all day every day during the week:

My office tree!  This year instead of putting it in the window, I put it on my file cabinet.  When it sat in the window I had my back to it pretty much all day.  Having it on the file cabinet allows me to see and enjoy it all day long.  I never used to decorate my office since I was so rarely in there, but when I quit my job last year I brought my work Christmas tree home to use in my home office.  Last year it was still decorated in the pink, purple, lime green, and blue that I had at work, but this year I decorated it to match my office – in pinks and golds and whites.  All of those gold balls that I got rid of downstairs?  Yep, they’re being repurposed in my office!  It was nice that it worked out that way so I didn’t have to spend any money buying new ones.

We always put up a full-size fake tree in our master bedroom, and it has always been my white and silver tree, but this year I found some adorable pink, white, and aqua pom pom garlands on clearance at Michaels and I just couldn’t resist them.  I added those to the master bedroom tree and I love the pop of color so much I don’t think I’ll ever go back to plain white and silver!  And apparently y’all all loved them, too, because when I polled everyone on Instagram every single person said to keep them!  And that post is also one of my most liked posts of the whole year.  So weird.  And as always, the tree also holds all of our beloved snowflake wedding ornaments.

Jacob’s tree in his bedroom is exactly the same as last year.  I always let him and Olivia put the decorations on their trees, so that’s why a lot of them are clumped together and hanging off of the bottom.  Lol.

Olivia’s tree in her bedroom is also exactly the same as always.  And she wanted me to do the flowers and some of the balls so hers are a little more evenly distributed. 

Well, that’s the entire house!  But before I go, let me just show everything to you one more time… at night, though!  That’s always my favorite way to see everything even though the pictures don’t do it justice!

Well, I enjoyed having you over!  I hope you enjoyed your little visit, too!

Don't forget to link up with us below!  

Your Hosts! 

Whitney at Polka-Dotty Place / Bloglovin / Facebook / Instagram / Pinterest / Twitter 
Keri at Keri Lynn Synder / Faceobok / Instagram / Twitter / Pinterest 
Sarah at Sarah E. Frazer / Facebook / Instagram / Twitter / Pinterest 

*Linking up with The Pleated Poppy for What I What I Wore, Pumps & Push Ups for Oh, Hey Girl! Link-Up, The Mummy ChroniclesTucker UpShopping My Closet for Style Me Wednesday, Classy Yet Trendy for Trendy Wednesday Link-Up, The Blended Blog and Jessi's Design and Going the Distance for What's Hap-"Pinning" Wednesday.