I LOVE to entertain and host dinners and parties. I also LOVE to give nice gifts hostess gifts when visiting. With those two thoughts in mind, I put together a... Holiday Hostess Gift Guide *this post contains affiliate links* Entertaining during the Christmas season is one of my favorite things. As I put together this Holiday Hostess Gift Guide, I did it from the perspective of  how I entertain. Picture  me, opening my front door to you.  There are candles burning brightly in the entryway, and I'm wearing a pretty hostess apron.   Red Metal and Glass Lantern, Set of … [Read more...]

Wow! That was fast! I cannot believe how quickly the Christmas season zoomed in and out this year. We were blessed to have had some special time with my husband's family, plus a brief time with dear friends we rarely see.  I know the holidays are not wonderful for everyone.  But, I do hope in the midst of it all, you were able to sense God's amazing love for you.  It's that love that brought us the very best gift we'll ever know. Do you ring in the New Year with family and friends?  However you celebrate, large or small, quiet or loud, we've got some delicious New Year's Eve menu ideas from this week's Project … [Read more...]

How would you like to make your holidays brighter?   I'm so excited to be able to give you the opportunity to  win a $250 Visa gift card courtesy of BlueMountain.com.  Click here to enter.  Someone is going to be super blessed!     Last week my friend Melanie linked up a Christmas post to Project Inspire{d} that touched my heart.  She talked about how much she had to do for Christmas, how her decor wasn't really blog/magazine worthy, and then she shared this... My old, plastic light-up nativity set may seem cheap to some, but my kids absolutely love it. They spend time … [Read more...]

Christmas Baking Vignette   What a treat to be here visiting my friend Diane at An Extraordinary Day! I was so excited when Diane told me that she was hosting a series on Christmas vignettes.   I love the idea of creating small vignettes in my home. It's an easy way to break decorating into small manageable bites. And that is especially welcome at the holidays when decorating the whole house can feel quite overwhelming.     Today I'm sharing a simple little vignette that sits on my kitchen counter and it's all about family traditions and baking Christmas cookies.     I … [Read more...]

Ready for a hot holiday tip? Do you take pictures of your past holiday decor or table settings? If you don't, I urge you to do that.  Bloggers have a tendency to take lots of photos, and I was "guilty" of that in my pre-blogging years.  But, now as I look back, I'm so glad I did.  It helps me remember the good ideas and get the creative juices flowing when I'm tired from all the festivities and I might still have some decorating to do, or tables to set for those special dinners and parties. Why not create a special file on your computer, just for holiday decor you want to remember?  I think you'll find … [Read more...]

Are you looking for a family friendly sweet treat for the grand finale to the big dinner? How about  dessert that you can pretty much make ahead, quickly assemble, and then serve with great aplomb? I've got just the thing for you... Snowman Sundaes     A snowman sundae is sure to be a hit.  I love that there's no baking involved.  It's really more like  craft project dessert. If there's a children's Christmas party on your calendar, you can even let the kids do everything except scoop the ice cream.  They'll have a ton of fun creating their own snowman sundaes, for … [Read more...]

It's Cyber Monday! Raise your hand if you've been shopping for deals online. I want to make your Christmas shopping a breeze, so I joined with some of my blogging pals and created the The Ultimate Holiday Gift Guide.  Here's my part.  I'd love for you to stop here and here and check out all the goodness. And if you choose to purchase through the links there... you will make my day and help support me and An Extraordinary Day.  Mwah!   And now... It's time for Project Inspire{d}! I am so glad you're here!    Mary Beth from Cupcakes and Crinoline ~ Malia from Yesterday on … [Read more...]

Are you ready for Thanksgiving? I confess... usually I have plenty of plans made by this time... but I don't necessarily do well in the execution department unless I get all the details prepared a week in advance.  Let's just say someone might have had a meltdown. One thing I like to do is have my table planned out and set ahead of time.  For me, that is an important detail that gives me a lot of peace and joy. This year I created an Oak Leaf  Thanksgiving Menu Frame for the buffet.     You can read all the details at Mod Podge Rocks.   And speaking of Thanksgiving … [Read more...]

Raise your hand if you've ever been late to a party. It's sort of embarrassing isn't it?  Everyone is already chatting and you're trying to fit in. That's sort of how I feel now that I've finally joined the Twitter "party." If you're on Twitter... would you help me "fit it" by following me and asking your network to follow me too? You can use the box on the sidebar at the right... or here's my handle: https://twitter.com/DianeMillerAED   Wow!  I sure can tell that the page on the calendar got turned for this week's link party! There is no doubt that many of you have already been thinking … [Read more...]

Whoosh!  That's my word to describe how quickly this week has come and gone. If you've got little kiddos humming around your house, you're no doubt on the look-out for fabulous fall or Halloween ideas for kids.  Last week I shared 9 Fun Halloween Ideas, from the link party.  This week we struck the mother-lode at Project Inspire{d)!  If you're creativity button needs a charge.... we've got you covered.  I can't wait to hear your favorite ideas!!   23 Crafts and Sweet Treats for Kids for Halloween.... Pom Pom Spiders by Craftionary Googly Eye Cupcake Topper by View From The Fridge DIY Scuba … [Read more...]

I love wildflowers! One of my favorite things to do is to walk the roadside and pick bouquets for decorating the table(s) for the Fourth of July. Earlier this week it rained quite heavily for a few days, so the wildflowers were pretty beat up. But, Wednesday, I went for a very long walk and discovered just what I wanted.  Happy Day!     The next morning I went for another walk scissors in hand. To my dismay, the massive scissors of the local road crew had come through and leveled my wildflower garden. You should have seen my face. I think it fell to my knees. Why, at … [Read more...]

  We on this continent should never forget that men first crossed the Atlantic not to find soil for their ploughs but to secure liberty for their souls. ~Robert J. McCracken Happy Fourth of July!!   Thank you for stopping by today. I appreciate you and your sweet comments make my day. Wishing you An Extraordinary Independence Day! Diane To receive FREE bits of inspiration like this in your inbox or reader, subscribe now. I'd be delighted if you'd share the goodness here with your friends. Click any of the sharing buttons at the bottom.   … [Read more...]

I can't believe how fast the days on the calendar tick off. We're just a little more than a week away from Memorial Day.     Last year I created a truly homespun and patriotic table.  It's one I really enjoyed a lot, too. I hope that you'll be able to take away some Memorial Day tablescape ideas that you can use for your celebration this year. Click here to see lots of photos and inspiration.   What do you usually do for Memorial Day weekend? Do you have a party planned?   Speaking of party....I am sooo excited that you have joined us again this week. I … [Read more...]

If you've been hanging out here for any amount of time, you've come to know that I believe that it's the little things that make life extraordinary.     There is absolutely no need to have pretty embellished valentine towels in your powder room or bath. Truly, we don't need fancy towels.   What if your friend gives you a bit of fabric? What if ivory hand towels the precise color of the fabric are discontinued and on sale for just $2.09 each? What would you do?  Get out the scissors and sewing machine and embellish a few towels for Valentine's Day? Seems like a good plan … [Read more...]

Valentine's Day is quickly approaching. To make it easy for you, I've put together ideas for valentines, delectable treats, wreaths, gifts, and decor.     Have fun spreading love and joy to those in your path with these...   14 Ways to Make Valentine's Day Extraordinary   When I first spied these valentines, I totally flipped. Every kid (or adult-sized kid) would love to get one of these. I've Got My Eye on You Valentine by Feelin' Crafty     Do you feel the pressure to have cute treats for your child's classmates or friends, but really don't have … [Read more...]

“The object of a new year is not that we should have a new year, but rather that we should have a new soul.”  G.K. Chesterton Do you make New Year's Resolutions? Whether the resolution is to be more organized, get healthy, read more books, or run a marathon....as significant as all of those are....the resolution to restore our souls is the more lasting resolution. What do you resolve to do in 2014? The photo quote above by Chesterton is available as a Free 5x7 Printable.  Download the New Year's Quote and Printable for 2014 here.  Save it to your desktop to print out at home or take to your favorite photo … [Read more...]

Twenty Fourteen will arrive in just a few days... Are you ready for the fresh start and opportunity she will bring?     The New Year is like a beautiful blank book..... We will open the book.  Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year's Day. ~Edith Lovejoy Pierce What words are you hoping to write in your new book? ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   ~   Catch up on all that's Extraordinary... this week at An … [Read more...]