Today on Weekend Meanderings, a holiday gift wrap idea, cozy winter throws, a great shop for coastal decor and tips for traveling with pets.
Happy weekend, friends!
It’s Saturday and I’m joining Kim and Elizabeth for Weekend Meanderings.
Our weekly roundup of inspiration and goings on.
It was another busy week around here.
Seriously, is there any other kind?
Our tree is decorated!
I hesitate to post a full photo.
It may be the most terribly decorated tree in the history of the world.
But it’s done and when it’s dark and the lights are on it sparkles and shines as well as any tree.
We also had Christmas lights put up on the outside of the house.
A first for Snowberry.
When I say ‘had put up’ I mean we paid someone to do it.
No shame here.
We also had our area rugs cleaned which was long overdue.
As well as our sectional sofa which I’ll talk more about later.
My Better-Late-Than-Never Holiday Gift Ideas went out.
And Kim and I hosted another Live which you can watch here.
Wow, I’m feeling pretty good about myself.
So on that note, are you ready?
HOLIDAY GIFT WRAP IDEA
Is your shopping done? Are you ready to start wrapping? This is how I wrapped our gifts this year and I already had all the components. I bet you have the makings of something similar in your gift wrap stash.
Plain brown paper is a great thing to have on hand and I love it for wrapping gifts. I also had this 5″ wide burlap ribbon. Why or when I acquired it, I haven’t a clue. The 1″ antique gold velvet ribbon is left over from decorating the library for Christmas. I also used it to tie bows on our tree. The 5/8″ blue velvet ribbon is left over from last year. The dried orange slices are also left over from decorating the library and I used them for garnish in my Cara Cara Winter Spritz.
On our Live this week we talked about favorite local shops and someone asked what is a favorite shop for coastal decor. Great timing because I planned to share Cailini Coastal today. Cailini Coastal is not a local shop … it’s an online shop. And as far as I can tell, does not have a brick and mortar presence. But … coastal is coastal.
Mary Ann of Classic Casual Home once told me that a touch of coastal decor is perfectly fine here at Snowberry. We’re near the coast … if I hop in the car I can see the Bay in a short 10-15 minutes. The key to what she said is ‘a touch.’ And I think most of us can get away with that. Here are a few of my favorite things from Cailini Coastal … that are a touch coastal but appropriate in any home.
Cailini Coastal is new to me, introduced by Alli of TCB Style. She recommended it as a source for the blue and white Christmas tree platter I shared in my Christmas in the Library post. It was sold out but I was able to find it here. Anyway, once on the site I couldn’t believe my eyes … how did I not know about this coastal shopping nirvana?! Good thing I know about it now, and just in case you didn’t, now you do.
TRAVELING WITH DOGS
Jim and I adopted our first dog, Sasha, shortly after setting up house together. This was a terrible idea and I don’t recommend it. Jim traveled, I worked a full-time … and all I can say is thank goodness for doggie daycare. It saved us in the first few year’s of Sashie’s life. Raising Sasha, a black lab, was a process of learning as we went … mostly we messed up but Sasha (best dog ever) was patient and eventually got us trained. By the time she left us, at the too-young age of 12, we had finally got the hang of it. Fast forward 20+ years and we now have two little dogs, Pippa and Maggie. Small dogs can be quite different from bigger dogs. And once again, we had to put the training wheels on while the girls showed us the ropes. One area where we had a lot to learn was how to travel (I’m talking road trip travel) with dogs. I think we’ve mastered it and these are a few things I recommend to make road tripping with dogs a little easier. On you and them.
Car seats are essential for small and medium sized dogs so they can see out. And also feel safe and protected. These are the car seats we use. The fleece slipcover comes off easily to toss in the wash.
It’s hard enough to get myself packed for trips, and then come the dogs. We had a duffle we used for their food, water, toys, treats, bully sticks, poop bags, harnesses, leashes, travel bowls … and all the other paraphernalia required to keep a pet happy. I just ordered this pet travel kit. It arrived yesterday, and it’s going to make our upcoming road trip even more smooth and organized.
Another thing we learned the hard way is to bring their beds. Our dogs are small, and we have these donut beds all over the house. A set in the bedroom, office and great room. And we have a set for travel. It makes them feel at home in hotel rooms or wherever we’re staying.
Along the same lines, bring blankets. Some restaurants won’t allow small dogs to sit in your lap or in a chair and insist they sit on the ground. Quel horreur! I always have our dog’s blankets in the car to place on the ground should they encounter such an indignity. This is a great tip for non-lap dogs too. I hate when I see dogs laying on cold, rough cement … and, yes, I judge their parents. We’ve been using these soft 30 x 30 baby blankets for Maggie and Pippa since they were babies. Our local pet store sold them. To make life easier we have several sets … one for their nighttime beds, and one for their car seats so we can grab them easily for restaurant dining. Most of the time we place the blanket in an extra chair and our dogs take a nap while we eat.
I keep their travel bowls handy so we can easily offer them water during rest stops. I bring refillable water bottles. Our dogs tend not to eat on the road. Or I should say tend not to eat their own food. They’ll happily have a bite of whatever we’re eating. Which brings me to my last tip.
Did you know that In ‘n Out Burger offers dog patties? They do. They’re unseasoned. We always order one for the girls … they share.
OVERSIZED FAUX FUR THROWS
Keeping our white sectional sofa cushions clean is an ongoing challenge. Two dogs and a cat don’t help, neither do two humans who have been known to spill. We had our areas rugs and sofa professionally cleaned this week. I’ve been using inexpensive ivory quilts to cover the bottom cushions, but thought it would be nice to use something cozier for these cold winter months. Yes, it gets cold here. This week we had overnight temps in the 30’s. Drew Tuma, one of our local meteorologists said, “30’s in California feels colder than any polar vortex on the east coast and you can’t tell me differently.” Well said, Drew. Well said.
After seeing so many Instagram and Pinterest photos of faux fur throws tossed over furniture, I wondered if I could find one long enough for our sectional. Turns out I can, and did. West Elm makes these oversized (60″ x 80″) faux fur throws … they arrived conveniently the day before the sofa cleaning and yesterday I tucked them into the lower cushions.
Pippa and Maggie give them two thumbs up. They come in standard (40″ x 60″) size too.
HOLIDAY PARTY IDEA – FRENCH FRY BAR
This week my friend, Suzanne of Crazy Blonde Life, shared a wonderful idea for holiday parties. A French Fry Bar! Genius. Read her full post here. And if you aren’t already following her on Instagram you’ll find her here. She has amazing style.
So there you have it, this weekend’s meanderings.
Let’s visit Kim and Elizabeth to see what’s they’re sharing.
Odds & Socks ~
Niece Sammi sent me snaps of her daughter Mae after her class Christmas choral performance.
Mae is five.
Older brothers Wyatt and Beau brought her flowers.
And, that’s a wrap on my Weekend Meanderings for this year.
Thank you for embracing our weekend shenanigans.
For reading, commenting, sharing the blog with your friends.
And also for your emails full of fun thoughts and suggestions.
I’m appreciative and grateful for your support.
And I’ll be back with Kim and Elizabeth on January 7th.
Until then, I wish you and your family the most magical holiday season.
Christmas, Hanukkah, everything you’re celebrating.
I hope it’s merry and bright.
If you missed last weekend’s meanderings, you can catch up here.
Cheers from Snowberry!