Saturday, December 10, 2011

Christmas Chalkboard & Real Greens Arrangement

Last week I mentioned that I was making a Christmas chalkboard display with real greens.  Yesterday I went out and cut some greens from my shrubs and let them sit overnight to absorb water.  Every year I do at least one big arrangement of real greens just so I can get that wonderful Christmas aroma.

Today I made my display using floral foam soaked in water.  This arrangement should last at least three weeks as long as I add water as needed.

 I used a faux evergreen swag on the edge of the chalkboard. It's trimmed in the same ornaments I used on the tree. 

I added a strand of battery-operated lights to the swag, which I turned on for this pic:
The battery-operated lights don't seem to last long, so I will not turn them on again until party #1. The real evergreen arrangement is very simple--just greens, dried hydrangeas from my Limelight bush, sprigs of gold balls, and pine cones.

  I went for simple decorating this year and used a ton of pine cones.

I put a couple of wreaths around candles in the family room and used pine cones &  silver mesh balls to decorate the wreath.

The dining room centerpiece is a simple faux greenery/pine cone/silver ball arrangement. Normally I would have a 2ft tree on top of all my china/curio cabinets, but this year I cut way back on my decorating.  I usually have six 2ft trees atop various china cabinets. 
 Right now I am regretting not doing those trees. I really need a tree with white lights on top of that curio cabinet.  I would not be surprised if I change my mind and add more trees later this weekend.

I have been putzing all day with table centerpieces, the real greens arrangement, wreaths for end tables, etc. It's been a lot of fun today. There is no pressure as I still have a week before the first party and I have the meal planned, most of the decorating done, 2 tables ready to set, and  I have prepared my grocery list. DH bought some items while grocery shopping today and will get the rest next Thursday. He wants to do shrimp cocktails with fresh shrimp, so that needs to be purchased just before serving.

Oh, by the way,  I have changed my dinner menu.  After talking with DH, we have decided to do a plated dinner of stuffed chicken breasts for next Saturday's dinner. As long as I am doing 100% of the cooking, I may as well cook what I like, which is a plated meal. I was looking on my blog for past entrees that I liked and came across a post about chicken Florentine and potatoes Anna. I stated that it was too bad I had no guests as that dinner was definitely guest-worthy.  That got me to thinking maybe I should do it for my party.  I will also do Chicken Cordon Bleu since I don't know if everyone likes spinach.  Instead of salad, we will serve shrimp cocktails as the first course.  I happen to have the coolest shrimp cocktails dishes....there are two glass pieces and the crushed ice goes in the first bowl with the shrimp and cocktail in the bowl that sits atop the ice.  I have never used them for a dinner party...only for our own dinners for two.

DH will don an apron and be the server as I plate the dishes.  

So far I have had a very busy, but pleasant day.  I am now taking a break to blog. Blogging is what I do to relax.

I hope you are all having an equally wonderful Saturday!


  1. Zoey, I love your Christmas decorating with the use of the pine cones. I used a lot of pine cones this year too. I really like your fresh arrangement under your chalk board.
    Have a good rest of the weekend

  2. your home looks beautiful...sounds like you are ready for your dinner guests...

  3. The greens and pinecones look great with the new green paint! I noticed it right away. Your house is so neat and tidy-mine looks like a decoration explosion. : ) I'm still working on decorating. Found my stockings and things got water in the bag and many things got mildewed-must have been when the heater had a leak-ugh and stinky. Had to toss a lot of things and washed some. My back is bad and I just came home from work too.
    Your dinner sounds nice. I love roast beef too. : ) I did one add it was easy peasy.

  4. Oh girl, you have to tke a picture of those Shrimp cocktails so I can drool on my keyboard!
    Your house looks beautiful.
    Good luck on your dinner!

  5. Zoey everything is looking really lovely. Your home is Christmas ready and I believe your company will be impressed.
    Cher Sunray Gardens
    Goldenray Yorkies

  6. Hi Zoey. Girl everything looks so pretty and festive. I love the arrangements. Either menu sounds yummy to me but I am not the one doing the cooking. LOL!

  7. I have always wanted a chalkboard..I must get one!
    You sound organized for your party many are you having? And everything looks festive and inviting.
    We had my siblings here last night for a Christmas party and had a wonderful time.

  8. Zoey, I love the natural theme this year. With me, I always think less is more. I think your decor is elegant and understated. Your guests will be wowed!
    A plated service is just what we're used to, working so many banquets! It will be awesome!

  9. This looks great,you have a beautiful home :)


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