Tuesday, December 30, 2008

December Wrap Up

December was not as challenging even with Christmas. Our employer income stayed the same. Additional income of $775.40 in the form of...
  • $269.40 - the hubs bonus (after taxes)
  • $220.00 - health reimbursement from my company
  • $286.00 - cash out stock that was no longer publicly traded ($230 went to savings)
We have decided to take the $1000 we have in a CD that matures next month and put it in savings. Then combined with our tax return we should have enough to have the work that was done on my Subaru last spring done AGAIN cause they messed it up. We are hoping the new mechanic finds fault with the work so we can get reimbursed. That's a long story for another day. Anything left over will immediately go on debt.

We went over our Christmas budget by $15 but that is not too bad since we bought gifts for many people on $500 by shopping sales and making some hand crafted items. We also cut back a little this year but didn't everyone? More hand crafted items are in store that were not finished but I have learned to start early next year.

As far as monthly expenses we track such as groceries, gas, eating out and coffee.
  • Grocery budget $400 - actual $492.20 and we still need stuff for New Years Eve
  • Gas budget $140 - actual $125.56 (and my tank is FULL)
  • Eating out $136.12 which is $3.05 more than last month
  • Coffee $96.59 which is $15.32 less than last month
Goals for January...

Finances
  • Reduce debt by $1800 ($1095 on credit cards and $705 on loans)
  • Reduce eating out to $50 (date night with the hubs)
  • Reduce coffee to $50 (twice per week)
  • Increase grocery budget to $500
Health
  • Continue walking on Sunday mornings with my friend
  • Add elliptical machine twice per week
  • Add The Firm video once per week
  • Increase water intake
  • Date night with the hubs (see eating out)
Hand crafting
  • Finish SD tabi socks
  • Finish SS fingerless gloves
  • Sew headband
Decluttering and Condo projects
  • Put away pattern pieces found in storage tub
  • Find homes or donate stuff behind the couch
  • Find homes or donate stuff along wall in master bedroom
  • Donate items already bagged
And there you have it. I think these are all attainable and I like the focus on several areas in my life. Here's to 2009!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

2009 Goals

My goals for 2009 are pretty simple. In fact, simplicity plays a role in all of my goals for this year. I need to get back to basics and not get distracted from my end result.

Finances I have set up a detailed budget for 2009. The hubs and I plan to pay down our consumer debt by minimally $15,000 which is just shy of half of our consumer debt (not including interest). Any extra we can come up with will go towards debt as well. Our tax return for 2008 and $1000 of the stimulus check we received last spring will go towards needed repairs and new tires on my Subaru. Anything left over will be placed on debt. The hubs and I will be looking in to starting a home business and revenue from that will go towards our debt reduction.

Health My focus we be on getting back in shape and losing some weight. I have my twenty year high school reunion this summer which I am still not sure I'm attending. In the past I have been really gung ho in the beginning and have taken on too much at once which is a recipe for failure. Baby steps to begin with. Throughout this past year every Sunday morning at 7 I have been walking the mall with my friend. In January I will be adding ten minutes twice a week on my elliptical trainer and doing a Firm video once a week. The goal here is to increase Firm workouts to three times a week. As the weather get's warmer I would like to be more active outside riding my bike, hiking and rock climbing.

I also plan on revamping my menu. To being with I am going to cut back on carbs like bread and pasta and eat brown instead of white rice. The goal is for every meal to divide my plate and have 1/4 from lean protein, 1/4 from carbs/starches and 1/2 from veggies and fruit. Increase in water intake as well as decrease in coffee with Starbucks only once per week. Every Sunday will be my menu planning day for the week so I know what I need to get at the grocery store as well as what we are eating throughout the week.

Surroundings It's time to finish decluttering my home. My condo is not very big but there is so much stuff that takes up room. I have craft items I no longer need and piles of stuff that need to be gone through and a home found for them or they need to be donated. I will also work on not bringing more stuff in to the house. My big weakness is books and I have been utilizing the local library system a lot more lately.

I also have some condo projects that need to be completed if we ever hope to put our place on the market spring 2010 and move to a house. Plus, it would be really nice to have my surrounding look done instead of a hodge podge of furniture and accessories in the house. I am going to write down the projects I hope to complete this year and actually schedule them.

Fun I would like to find new ways to have fun and enjoy my family. Not all of these things have to cost money. Some of them will include things I have already mentioned like bike riding and hiking. Things like game nights and movie marathons are easy ways to accomplish this.

Here's to a great 2009!

Friday, December 26, 2008

Getting Ready for the New Year

I hope all of you had a wonderful Christmas for those who celebrate it. I was pretty excited to have more snow on the ground when I woke up. It snowed all morning until around one and then started to warm up. We still have plenty on the ground but I expect it will be gone before the weekend is over. That is really fine with me cause I am getting a little sick of it.

Normally the hubs and I hit the movie theater on Christmas day. This year we and I stayed in PJ's all day long watching movies. I also started a book I got for Christmas. The kids had a great Christmas and scored with Wii games. I know what they will be doing all next week at our house with the hubs.

We are spending today at our friend and neighbors house for a movie marathon. In fact, I don't think we will venture out for the entire weekend with the exception of taking some library books back that are due today.

I'm working on my 2009 goals and have revamped my debt reduction plan and will post soon.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

It's snowing again

I am happy to report that I finished my brothers Christmas gift last night. I still have a few thousand threads to snip then I will get it in to a box and wrap it. I'm calling it Tetris for obvious reasons. Oh - and it's HUGE!

I'm pretty thrilled with the randomness of the look of the quilt but there is nothing random about the pattern. Where you see the orange squares is where I stitched an X through the front and back with orange thread to "quilt" them together. The backing became the binding on the front. It's in the dryer right now cause it's all snowy from the photo.


Here is a special treat for you all. Someone gave me this recipe last year and it replicates a certain giant coffee sellers Christmassy treat with cranberry's and white chocolate.

1 ½ cups packed light brown sugar

1 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled

2 eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 ¾ cups white chocolate chips

1 ½ cups dried cranberries, coarsely chopped (I use Craisins)

1 cup toasted chopped pecans (if desired)

¼ cup grated orange zest


Preheat the oven to 350°


Lightly butter an 11 by 15 inch jelly roll pan or rimmed baking sheet. Whisk together the brown sugar, butter, eggs, and vanilla in a large bowl until smooth. Whisk in the flour, baking powder, and salt until well blended, then stir in the white chocolate ships, cranberries, pecans, and orange zest. Spread the mixture evenly in the prepared pan (it will be quite stiff) and bake until golden brown, about 20 to 22 minutes. Set aside on a wire rack to cool.


Frosting


8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature

1 cup powdered sugar

½ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature

3 tablespoons grated orange zest, divided

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/3 cup dried cranberries coarsely chopped

6 ounces high quality white chocolate, coarsely chopped

Cream together the cream cheese, powdered sugar, butter, 1 tablespoon of the orange zest, and vanilla with an electric mixer at medium speed until smooth and fluffy. Spread the mixture over the cooled base. Stir together the remaining 2 tablespoons orange zest with the dried cranberries in a small bowl and sprinkle the mixture over the frosting. Melt the white chocolate in a small heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water, stirring until smooth. Drizzle the white chocolate over the bars and let sit until the chocolate is set.

Cut the bars into 3 inch squares and then diagonally into triangles, makes 48 bars.



I was unable to finish the Tabi socks for my SD, the fingerless gloves for my SS or the scarf for my mom. Never fear, the SK's will get their gifts in January some time and I will finish the scarf and give it to my mom or save it. It's never to early to start for next year!


Below is a shot of the first Tabi sock and a skein of yarn. I'm about to turn the heel on this sock. This color way is called Wicked Witch. I was leaning towards Lost Boys cause I thought Evil Stepmother was over the top. I will post a photo when they are done.



This is the first ever white Christmas for me and I am thrilled! Now it's time to get my house back in order. There is sewing and wrapping stuff everywhere. I may just make myself a new pair of flannel PJ bottoms first.

Happy WHITE Christmas!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

I second that

I was tagged today by my friend and I agree with her - seriously cruel! Pardon my efforts at taking a self portrait. Digital camera's sure are handy but not this handy.

Soooo..................................

1) Take of picture of yourself right NOW.
2) DON'T change your clothes. DON'T fix your hair. Just take a picture.
3) Post that picture with no editing.
4) Post these instructions with your picture.
5) Tag 10 people to do this.

I'm tagging....

Kilted Travel Agent
Escape Brooklyn
Celtic Sprite
Knit Purl Drop
Weirdy Pants
Betty Boogie's Oddventure
My Forever House
Sallies Niece
Frugal
Confessions of a Pagan Soccer Mom

The mystique is broken - yes it's true. I am normal.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Snow, Snow, Snow & The Mall

We still have a ton of white stuff on the ground here at chez paisleypenguin. It snowed more last night and there was quite a bit of wind. I only have two days to work this week and then I am off Wednesday for the holiday. I'm a bit nervous about the drive to and from work and could work from home again but went stir crazy toward the end of Friday.

Yesterday the hubs and I picked up my mom and headed to the mall. First we hit Barnes & Noble and Old Navy which are near the mall. We found a majority of gifts at B&N cause my family are all big readers. I scored at ON for my SD (her favorite store) with stuff on sale and discounts handed to us at the door. Can you imagine a t-shirt for $1?

After that we went to the mall and to save our sanity the hubs used valet parking. Poor guy, he was the only one working the valet tent and people just started leaving their cars in the valet turnaround. The hubs gave him a decent tip cause he was working his but off!

It's weird going to the mall during regular business hours. Usually Sunday mornings I meet a friend at 7:00 and we walk inside the mall. There are others walkers there and cleaning crew. It's nice and empty. We got to the mall early enough that it wasn't too crowded and the lines were not so bad. The hubs and I managed to get most of the rest of our shopping done before the stress of the holiday and the amount of people started to bother me and make me feel claustrophobic and frustrated. I have to admit there were a few gift cards bought at that point.


The hubs and I dropped my mom off and went to Archie McPhee for stocking stuffers. I can't tell you what I got for the hubs cause he reads my blog but I can tell you the few things we got for the kids. SD got the Cat-A-Pult and SS got the Chuck-A-Duck. I'm partial to the Flying Monkeys myself. The hubs got a free plastic crocodile with his purchases which is now sitting in my car.

You can get all sorts of interesting things at Archie McPhee (they have an online store as well) like bacon flavored anything (band aids, car fresheners, floss, gumballs). Different bath ducks - they have a zombie one, a devil one a pirate one - you name it they probably have it. Don't forget dashboard Jesus. No Christmas stocking would be complete without the Yodeling Pickle.

We also stopped at the fabric store so I could purchase the backing flannel for my brothers quilt. That is what I will be working on today. I need a couple small items and then I am done. I started wrapping gifts last night but need more boxes. I am going to venture to my mom's in the snow cause she has a refrigerator box FULL of boxes I can use.

Stay warm out there!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Wacky Weather

I could not help posting this. Glad I am able to work from home!

Hand Crafted Christmas Update

Sadly I fell short this year of completeing all of my hand crafted items. The socks for SD got started last Monday night and I have managed to turn the heel on the first one. That is where I am at. I have not had time to rip out (again) SS's first fingerless glove or the scarf for my mom. My brothers quilt just needs backing so that will be completed this weekend.

Tomorrow the hubs and I are making a Bonsai run to the mall for the rest of our gift shopping and to make up for the hand crafted items I did not complete. I would like to do some baking this weekend as well. The kids will each get their items when they are done with I hope to be pretty soon in the New Year and I plan on keeping them a surprise.

I believe I will need to start much earlier for Christmas next year.

How did you all do on your hand crafted efforts?

Thursday, December 18, 2008

It's Still Snowing

It's still snowing where I live. Today I worked from home and if things are still bad tomorrow I will do the same. That is a nice option for me.


My dog is crazy. Hates puddles and is from Puerto Rico. When it snows he just loves it! He army crawls and buries himself in the snow. The photo below is after just one adventure. It's a little blurry cause he doesn't stay still for long.

Since it's a snow day, I thought I would entertain myself with some of these lovelies. For the dog that has everything....










Why not the Serengetti gold bed for $240 or the Dog Feeder for $120?

For your biker dog that likes it a little on the wild side.
You can get a wedding dress for your dog too. You can get your girl ready for her deb ball even with this crushed velvet number.


For those of you that want a little Christmas cheer.

You have heard of the man purse. Now there is the puppy purse. I kid you not.

I have no words..........................

Monday, December 15, 2008

Snow & Ice = 2 Hours Late

Because of the snow we got on Saturday and the ice that is sticking around my kids snow schedule for school is in effect and they are running two hours late. I thought I would take the opportunity to post some of my Christmas decorating.

It didn't go as planned this year. I had an idea in mind but was unlucky in finding the right peacock blue colored Christmas balls. I then got inspired by some blogs I read on a regular basis and a new one I found.

Ki Naussauer was one half of JunkMarket and has since moved on to start her own company, Junk Revolution. Her message is Rescue. Reuse. Reimgine. Inspire. Check out her blog which you can also find on my blog roll to the right under handcrafted blogs. Check out this post of her guest room all decked out for Christmas. Inspiring!

Back to decorating which was minimal this year. Plans are in the works for next year though. Our tree fits in the corner of our dining room just perfectly. In fact, this is the first year I have had the experience of the tree NOT getting in the way of a regular traffic pattern (or doorway) in our tiny condo.

Sorry for the color representation - my dining room is actually an olive green but it doesn't photograph well. I even discovered the white balance accidentally (that is what happens when your SS just starts pushing buttons randomly on the camera and you don't read the manual) but it's still hard to get the true olive green color. The red you see peeking in to the photo is my kitchen.

Here is the centerpiece for my dining table. The tablecloth underneath it is from Halloween I just have not had time to make the one I want. That will happen in January (I hope). It's a true repurposing project. Can you guess? I'll give you a hint, I reuse white satin.

Another close up of my evergreen, tinsel and snow theme Christmes balls. This will be the decorating theme for my dining room next Christmas. I will make some white curtains to hang in place of my brown ones for the season, the new table topper I plan to make next month, hopefully will have the table base painted the correct color (right now it's aqua which I have thought about as another color element in the room) and make some white feather trees.


The bar area has my Santa moose which I will need to make a new coat for to color coordinate with my green, silver and white theme. I have an ornament set that spells Joy I hung over my frames.

Here is the bar top. I do plan to get some greenery from my mom's yard. Been too icy this weekend. The owl was a Halloween decoration from 07 that became a permanent resident. I think I may find a snowy white owl for the Christmas holidays next year. This is just to the left of my Christmas tree.

The living room didn't get much this year but I have big plans for next year which include my living room makeover. This little tree usually resides in my kids room but this year we have it out in the living room. I placed it on a silver cake stand and it's sitting on my Grandpa's WWII trunk we use as a coffee table. The ornaments and gifts under the tree we have had for several years. It was so cold yesterday we thought a fire would be nice.

Even Jeeves our butler and bearer of God sticks get's in to the spirit. He serves as a side table to our wing chair. Now that I think about it I don't think I have posted about my find. We found it at a thrift store for $20 and it reclines. Now to find a second and replace our sofa with an IKEA couch.


I have always wanted to do a theme tree but every year there are so many memories with our ornaments we always end up putting them all up. I think I may buy a short little two foot tree to do as a theme every year. Some of my favorite ornaments...

This sassy gal doesn't have a name yet. The icicle to the right is a set of six from my sister. Goes great with my green, silver and white theme. There is Herbie the love bug.

Here is a shot of the green and brown ornaments I was going to use as the theme in this room.


We have a star wars obsession her in our household.

The Millennium Falcon.

Queen Amidala

A Tie Fighter. There are more but this post is suddenly getting to sci-fi. We have the mystery machine from Scooby Doo.
And of course, no tree would be complete without an ode to addictive legal stimulants.

As I said before. Lot's of plans for next year. Putting everything out yesterday got me inspired. I have new Christmas stockings, a new wreath idea, a tree for my front porch, feather trees, curtains, a table topper and much much more. I will leave you with a photo of Santa Mouse. The hubs has had this since he was a kid and his huge plastic easr are kind of indearing.

Now to go put on long underwear and brave the ice. If we get the kids to school and it's bad out there I will be working from home today. Love that option!

****

PS. Just as I was finishing this post I got a message from Roland at Militant Ginger. I won his contest and get a chance to read his book! If you have not already go and check him out. You won't be sorry!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Quilt Top Finished & It Snowed!

Yesterday I did a marathon sewing day while watching all three Lord of the Rings movies - extended versions. Good news I finished the quilt top for my brother in the beginning of the third movie.

I don't have a photo yet cause it's so big I just can't get a good picture. I hope to post one soon though. Now all I need is flannel for the back. I am only going to quilt it by stitching x's in the orange squares. That will hold the two pieces together in places all over. The back piece of flannel will also be the border for the front.

It snowed yesterday as well and when I got up at o dark thirty to go walking this morning I discovered at least four inches on my car.


I noticed the other day there are still blooms on my hollyhocks from last summer. Here they are in the snow.

I hope for more and could do without the ice. If it sticks around I will probably be working from home tomorrow. We are going to get our tree up and decorated today and we are doing a Harry Potter marathon.

Sadly I have not decorated much for Christmas. This year it will be the basics but all next year I will be gearing up for decorating my house for Christmas come December 1st!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Christmas Movies

I can't believe Christmas is in 12 days! I'm not nearly ready. I have craft projects to complete - or start, I have gifts to buy and everything needs to be wrapped. We bought our tree last weekend and need to put it up this weekend. I have not even decorated. Ahhhhh! (Picture Makauley Culkin in Home Alone).

I got a little of the third panel of my brothers quilt done last week. Worked long hours and was exhausted most days. This weekend is all about finishing that quilt and anything else I can start. It's supposed to snow too.

Now that we have rearranged the living room I can see the TV from the dining room table where I will sew and that reminded me of my favorite Christmas movies. I tend to enjoy the ones where everything is not picture perfect, slightly dysfunctional families and lot's of drama.

First up is the classic A Christmas Story from 1983. "Ralphie, a young boy growing up in '40's Illinois, dreams of owning a Red Rider BB gun. He sets out to convince the world this is the perfect gift. But along the way, he runs into opposition from his parents, his teacher, and even good 'ol Santa Claus himself." The hubs and I actually have a leg lamp replica but have never had the place to put it. Maybe this year we will find it."


Quote: Only one thing in the world could've dragged me away from the soft glow of electric sex gleaming in the window.

Next up is The Ref from 1994. "Denis Leary plays an unfortunate cat burglar, who is abandoned by his partner in the middle of a heist, and is forced to take an irritating Connecticut couple (Kevin Spacey, Judy Davis) hostage. He soon finds that he took more than he bargained for when the couple's blackmailing son and despicable in-laws step into the picture. Before long they're driving him nuts with their petty bickering and family problems. The only way for him to survive is to be their referee and resolve their differences, before he can be nabbed by the police."


Quote: "Great, I hijacked my [insert favorite expletive] parents."

A more recent holiday movie but one of my favorites (LOVE Diane Keaton) is The Family Stone from 2005. "The Stone family unites in common cause when their favorite son brings his uptight girlfriend home for the Christmas holiday, with plans of proposing. Overwhelmed by the hostile reception, she begs her sister to join her for emotional support, triggering further complications."


Quote: "Christmas is not "clothing optional" this year - we have a guest. "

Another recent favorite is The Holiday from 2006. "In London, Iris Simpkins writes a wedding column in a newspaper and has an unrequited love for her colleague Jasper Bloom. Nearly Christmas, she is informed that Jasper is engaged and will marry another colleague, and her life turns head over heels. In Los Angeles, a movie-trailers maker Amanda Woods has just broken with her unfaithful boyfriend Ethan and wants to forget him. Amanda accesses a house exchange website, and impulsively swaps her mansion for Iris' cottage in Surrey for the holiday along the next two weeks. While in Surrey, Amanda meets Iris' brother and book editor Graham and they fall in love for each other. Meanwhile Iris meet her next door neighbor, the ninety year old screenplay writer Arthur, who helps her to retrieve her self-esteem, and the film composer Miles, and they fall in love for each other."

Quote: "I don't know, but I think what I've got is something slightly resembling... GUMPTION!"

A classic for the entire family is Home Alone from 1990. "In this film, Kevin McAllister is an eight year old boy left at home by his parents, when they leave with the rest of the family for Christmas holidays to Paris. At first he seems to enjoy living alone, but after a while he understands that things aren't so easy. Especially when two robbers decide to break in a particular house. HIS house! Is he able to defend his home?"


Quote: "This is extremely important. Will you please tell Santa that instead of presents this year, I just want my family back. No toys, nothing but Peter, Kate, Buzz, Megan, Linnie and Jeff. And my aunt and my cousins. And if he has time, my Uncle Frank. Okay?"

Another personal favorite is The Santa Clause from 1994. "Divorcee Scott Calvin is disgusted to learn that his ex and her husband have tried - and failed - to break it easy to their 6-year-old son Charlie that Santa isn't real. On Christmas Eve, Scott reads The Night Before Christmas... then receives an unexpected visitor on his roof. When he's startled by Scott's calling out and falls, the Santa impersonator disappears, leaving only an 8-reindeer sleigh and a suit with instructions to put it on if he's involved in an accident. Scott does, and is transported around the town dropping gifts through chimneys until he's taken to the North Pole and informed by a group who claim they're elves that he is now Santa. Charlie is proud of his dad's new job, though Scott's convinced it's a dream. Until his hair turns white, his beard refuses to stay shaved, he gains weight inexplicably, even for his sudden love of junk food... Now he's accepted it, there's just one problem: how to keep it secret from his disbelieving family?"


Quote: "Hey, I know where this is going. The other guy fell, it was an accident. I've got homeowners insurance, and a good attorney, not as good as my wife's - but lets not open up that wound! "

The new version of the classic How The Grinch Stole Christmas from 2000. "Based on the book by the famous Dr. Seuss. Inside a snowflake exists the magical land of Whoville. In Whoville, live the Who's, an almost mutated sort of munchkinlike people. All the Who's love Christmas, yet just outside of their beloved Whoville lives the Grinch. The Grinch is a nasty creature that hates Christmas, and plots to steal it away from the Whos which he equally abhors. Yet a small child, Cindy Lou Who, decides to try befriend the Grinch."


Quote: "The nerve of those Whos. Inviting me down there - and on such short notice. Even if I wanted to go my schedule wouldn't allow it. Four o'clock, wallow in self pity; 4:30, stare into the abyss; 5:00, solve world hunger, tell no one. 5:30, jazzercize. 6:30, dinner with me. I can't cancel that again. 7:00, wrestle with my self-loathing; I'm booked. Of course, if I bump the loathing to 9 I could still be done in time to lay in bed, stare at the ceiling and slip slowly into madness. But what would I wear?"

There are a few movies in the theaters this season I want to see. Typically we have the hubs kids Christmas morning and then they go to their mom at noon. The hubs and I have been known to see three movies on a Christmas day.

Four Christmases
"When a couple tries to fly away from their family for Christmas, as they do every year, their fun turns around when all flights have been canceled. Now they have to go to four houses to celebrate Christmas while going through memories they don't want to go into and surprises they can't handle while they have to use a safe word to get out of situations ."

Nothing Like the Holidays "A Puerto Rican family living in the area of Humboldt Park in west Chicago face what may be their last Christmas together."

What are your favorite Christmas movies?



Thursday, December 11, 2008

Christmas Lights

In Seattle we have some really great Christmas light displays and some not so great. Last night the hubs and I stopped at various places to take some photos. There are two neighborhoods in North Seattle that go all out and decorate. They both have food donation stations and give out candy canes.

The house below decorates in red and white lights every year. They are right at the entrance to the neighborhood. If you are in the north Seattle area of Mount Lake Terrace this neighborhood is just east of 44th off of 228th.

This house has a somewhat tropical flair to it. Palm trees in the winter? Why not?

Sorry for the blurriness of some of these photos. I tried my best. Below is a mailbox that I thought was too cute.

This neighborhood has a bunch of houses with these large blow up characters that have become popular over the last several years. I am not a big fan but here is a favorite Christmas cartoon character.


The next neighborhood is further east down 228th. This neighborhood I think inspired the first one as they have been at it a little longer. All of the houses have these great signs in front of them.

The house with these penguins have a ton of individual lit up animals and characters.

There are a few houses near my place that are a little over the top. If you are quiet enough you can actually hear the electricity. The first one I call the Purple House cause they actually have two tones of purple paint on their house.

There were so many lights I could not get them in to one photo. If you live near the King/Snohomish county line this house is just west of highway 99 on 205th.

This other house is near the Purple House and we drive by it every night on the way home from work. It's off Freemont just south of 205th.

Again, so many lights I had to take two photos. They even have a Christmas countdown clock in their window.

This house is another we drive by every night. Another house with a ton of Christmas lights.

Downtown Edmonds (my town) fountain decorated but missing it's Christmas tree.

This weekend the hubs and I plan to go to Candy Cane Lane in the U District as well as a couple other well known displays. Photos to come soon!