Archive for Christmas
As I anxiously await the arrival of our sons and daughters-in-love I am reminded about how important family is at Christmas. I am so very fortunate to have such a loving and close family. We are spread out across the country but we make the effort to be together for Christmas. I am truly blessed. Here is my playful family last Christmas at Lake Gaston!
Over the years my family circle has grown. The MSLL gang is a large part of that circle. This is the gang at our annual Christmas dinner along with our new addition, Ethan Campbell Wenger (being held by Ryan, his proud Dad)
My extended family goes much further than just our team. It encompasses the wonderful friends that grace our showroom, our design clients that invite us into their homes and all the talented contractors that support us. We get to know them and their families as part of our amazing family circle.
So whether you spend Christmas with family, friends or neighbors it is the people that make Christmas magical. Embrace the moments!
Merry Christmas to you and all your family circle!
Love to all,
MSLL has constructed the ultimate Holiday Gift Guide to make your shopping experience a bit easier this Holiday season. We promise with these amazing gifts there will be no returns or re-gifting if you stick to our guide! The following MSLL Holiday Gift Guide features 12 perfect gifts that are sure to bring happiness and make you the best gift giver ever! Move over Santa, I’m giving the best gifts this year! Oh! Not to mention you will have the best wrapped presents around with our fabulous complementary gift wrap!
Mary Sherwood Lake Living Holiday Gift Guide 2014:
1. Fashion Apparel: This year’s apparel seems to be the best we have ever carried! It’s been hard to keep the racks full. We have wonderful travel wear, bright tunics and palazzo pants that have been super popular this year. Our travel wear is wrinkle free, perfect for your next getaway! $38 – $78
2. Don’t forget the Captain! Our Captain Rodney’s Boucan Glaze and Peach Barbecue Boucan Sauce are a crowd pleaser! These would make perfect gifts for a neighbor or take a bottle as a hostess gift for your next holiday party your attending. This sauce is delicious! The bottle has a recipe attached for an amazing appetizer dip! Even someone that tailgates would love this for their next sports event! You can’t go wrong here. $12
3. Magnolia Casual Indoor/Outdoor Swings: I always have people telling me their child would love this in their bedroom or they are planning on hanging one on their boat dock! Which is a perfect idea for these gorgeous swings! All our swings come in a set which includes: The swing constructed in indoor/outdoor fabric, a seat cushion, back pillow and matching carrying bag which is easy to stow. $189
4. Sweet & Saucy Caramel Sauce: This happens to be our Salted Caramel Sauce which is my favorite! = ) We have: Spicy Mango Madness, Rum Caramel and even a Raspberry Fudge Sauce! This is a great gift for anyone! I would pair my jar with an ice cream scoop for the perfect ice cream sundae package! Simple & Easy! You could always add cherries on top! $11
5. Lake Gaston Picture Frame: Here is another great gift idea! I’m sure mom or grandma would love this in their lake home! Take it step further and actually put a photo in the frame of the family or grand-kids! The picture corners in the frame make it easy to change out the photos each year! $49
6. Mary Sherwood Lake Living Gift Card: The perfect gift! Our gift cards do not expire and can be used towards anything in our showroom! You could even give a gift card for $25 or $35 for someone to attend one of Chef Yvonne’s cooking classes held here at MSLL! Absolutely Perfect! $ – $$$
7. Lake Gaston Christmas Ornaments: We have several different ornaments to choose from this year. Some even have Lake Gaston printed on them! How cool is that? These would be great if you know someone that gets an ornament for their tree each year or for an ornament exchange party. $18
8. Jewelry: Our Jewelry display has just everything from necklaces, earrings, bangles, brackets, watches, rings and a few necklace/earring sets. Various style to choose from. We even have a handmade line from a young lady in Virginia Beach! $10 – $148
9. Handbags: We have the look you want but not the price. Our gorgeous bags look similar to a Micheal Kors’ bag but not the ticket price! I love our bags I think they are age appropriate for anyone 20-something to someone 60-something! We have various sizes and style for fit any ladies taste. $14 – $123
10. Scribble Cloths: Have you seen these yet? Scribble Cloths are amazing! Great for parties, children and events! We have runners that can be scribbled on with chalk! We have used these several times for events here at MSLL! We used the large runner for our food display, labeling all our delicious delights! What a great gift! $38 – $50
11. Lake Gaston Coasters: We have several sets of Lake Gaston Coasters! My favorites are the Lake map and Lake Rules! We have sets of two and fours! Perfect for anyone that loves and lives on the lake! $32 – $57
12. Add-A-Kid Bibs: Don’t forget the little ones! We have an array of items in our children’s area but, these have to be the funniest! These bibs are one of a kind designs for little guys and girls! All bibs have Lake Gaston on them as well! Such a great keep sake too! $13
Just follow our Holiday Gift Guide for the perfect Christmas presents this Holiday season! Need more ideas? Just give us a call (252-586-2437) or ask me! We do our best to meet the needs of our customers. We are always willing to help! We even suggest gift ideas for no charge! =) Join us this Holiday season and Shop Small here on Lake Gaston! Don’t forgot the complimentary Gift Wrap!
Mary Sherwood Lake Living, Lake Gaston
It’s the week of our Christmas Open House here at MSLL! I have been blinded by Christmas lights, covered in glitter, and the bows just keep coming and coming. Whoops!? I’m sorry that was just my tacky sweater! HaHa!
‘Tis the season to be Tacky! & we are embracing this Tacky trend this holiday season at MSLL! We even have a whole tree dedicated to this Tacky Christmas trend! Why Tacky!? Well because it’s FUN! There are no rules, no guidelines and just about anything works! It brings out the kid in all of us!
The holiday season is a great time to gather with friends and family. Special festivities take place and this year Tacky Christmas Sweater parties top the chart as the most popular party theme to host this holiday season. However, this may require you to wear a tacky sweater that you may not own. NO FEAR! There is even a website now that sells ONLY Tacky Christmas Sweaters! Like I said, this trend is taking over the spotlight!
Tacky Christmas Sweaters can be for your beverages too! Like the ones shown here!
Tacky Sweaters can be found at thrift stores, eBay, or if you’re feeling creative construct a one of a kind sweater of your own! I think homemade sweaters are the way to go. Just like homemade Halloween costumes, they always make a better lasting impression.
Not sure how to create a Tacky Christmas Sweater? Here are a few tips to consider:
1. Start with a good sweater for the base. Bright bold cheerful colors in shades of green or red will work best! Any sweater with an over-the-top print or pattern are great as well.
2. Ornaments are second. These can be found at any dollar store or thrift store. The more unique the better! Stay away from breakable ornaments – this could get messy in the middle of your party, PARTY FOWL!
3. Add a little Flare to your sweater. Sequins, tinsel, shiny bows, garland, what ever your heart desires here!
4.Patches and other appliques can be a quick and easy fix! Hot glue them or even iron-on’s will do the trick! Wah LAH! Your Done! You have a one of a kind Tacky Christmas Sweater that is sure to be the highlight of the party.
Here are some of my favorite homemade Tacky Sweaters I’ve come Across Online:
Christmas Sweater Tree– I have seen this several times, it’s so clever. When she puts her arms above her head her sweater becomes a beautiful Christmas tree.
The Abominable Snowman Tacky Sweater- I love this! Rudolph is a classic Christmas movie and this fuzzy guy will steal the show at your next Tacky appearance.
Tacky Couple of Sweaters– Get the Hubby involved! I think this is adorable and even tackier that they match!
Which Sweater is your favorite!? Or do you have a Tacky ensemble you would like to share?
We hope to see everyone this Saturday at our Christmas Open House! Seminar beings at 9 AM! Shopping 10 AM!
Have a Tacky Holiday Season!
Mary Sherwood Lake Living -Working with you to create your lifestyle!
We just returned from our semi-annual market trip to Atlanta. Boy did we pack a lot into this trip!
We were pleased to be invited to a Retailers Round Table Breakfast sponsored by Home Accents Today Magazine at the Capital City Club. This was a small group of retailers ranging from one of the largest online home fashions companies (Wayfair) to independent interior designers. We shared insights about consumer buying trends, the use of social media and other business issues. It was a great to take part in this forum and express our ideas amongst our national peers.
Later the same day we were invited to the largest awards event in the gift and home industry, The Icon Awards. Thanks to Home Accents Today magazine, we were guests at their table to hear the presentations of the awards to so many deserving companies. Most of the award winners have built very successful, large companies that are very involved in local, national and international causes. It makes one feel very fortunate to be involved in this industry. Entertainment for the evening was a performance by the band Heart. Do you remember their most popular song in the 70’s? Here is a short clip of part of their performance. http://youtu.be/81h0yD78ns
Now for the finds. Here are a few of the interesting displays and items we found.
Solaria 26″ Globe Chandelier was amazing. They just introduced this fixture in multiple colors.
Contemporary large art was everywhere. Here is a pair of prints from Paragon.
This window display at Mud Pie was still showing the chalk board theme for the holidays. Santa, Mrs. Claus and the reindeer have their places marked on this chalk board runner. We are not over this trend just yet.
This cute display of stuffed animals on inner-tubes and slides was quite eye-catching. Great merchandising…we bought some of these cute Knitzie animals.
Dixie was into head-gear as evidenced by her many poses in various hats and headbands.
The girls and I did manage to have some fun with an afternoon glass of champagne with floating Wild Hibiscus Flowers…soon to be available at MSLL.
One more shot of our late evening play-a ride on the Atlanta ferris wheel at Olympic Park, adjacent to our hotel!
So-these girls do know how to have fun mixed with a lots of work!
You can look forward to lots of new items starting to arrive any day!
Mary Sherwood Lake Living -Working with you to create your lifestyle!
It’s that special time of year again, the holidays. The stockings are hung with care and Christmas spirit is in the air! Loved ones near and far come to together to celebrate this joyous holiday. We would like to wish each and every one of you,
a very Merry Christmas from our Mary Sherwood Lake Living Family to yours!
Please be careful in your travels and don’t forget to leave cookies for Santa!
Here is a little sneak peek from our
Mary Sherwood Lake Living Christmas Party. Enjoy!
Rocking around the banana tree? Yes, Mary doesn’t have your traditional Christmas tree every year. She likes to think more outside the box. What do you think of her non-traditional tree? Check out Mary’s blog about non-traditional Christmas trees. http://marysherwoodlifestyles.com/oh-christmas-trees/
I love when people have interesting or humorous cocktail napkins. They are a great conversation starter! Here are Mary’s from our get together!
So many great presents! We opened our gifts before indulging in our fabulous meal prepared by Chef Yvonne!
I even decided to make my Christmas Candy Sleighs! I featured them in the past Design Wisdom Wednesday on Christmas Party Planning Guide. I think they came out great? What do you think?
Our dinner was amazing. Chef Yvonne out did herself as usual! For appetizers, we raved over the Buffalo Chicken dip and mozzarella cheese sticks wrapped in salami on a balsamic jelly. Did I mention the balsamic jelly came all the way from Italy? YUM! Our first course of the night (shown above) was bay scallops on a sweet potato puree with pickled corn and roasted sunflower seeds topped with micro greens. What an incredible combination!
For our main course we devoured this delicious homemade creamed garlic spinach and lasagna. By now my buttons are about to pop off my pants! But Yvonne’s food is so good, of course I didn’t turn down dessert, especially when we had two choices! She even let you choose both, if you wanted! Many of us shared our decadent treats! We had a choice between eggnog bread pudding with an eggnog glaze and chocolate pate with a cranberry coulis. Outstanding!
I am truly blessed to be a part of the Mary Sherwood Lake Living family. I’m the new kid on the block, but I have been so fortunate to have met such wonderful people who I get the privilege to work with. I can not only call them co-workers or my boss, but also great friends!
Again, I would like to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas &
a Happy New Year!
Mary Sherwood Lake Living – Working with you to create your lifestyle at Lake Gaston and beyond!
Our feathered friends are steadily increasing in trend and popularity. Peacocks, cardinals, parrots, and toucans are all soaring into view. Yet of all these creatures of flight, owls have swooped in and stolen the spotlight. Don’t expect this trend to slow down anytime soon, owls are here to stay!
Owls can be found in almost everything from home decor including wallpaper and fabric to clothing and accessories. Owls are a symbol of intelligence, so of course following this trend is a smart choice indeed. Try using owls on your mantel, included in a centerpiece or on a side table.
Owls have always played a significant role in fairytales and folktales as symbols of knowledge and wisdom, which makes these feathered friends ideal for decorating a child’s room. Whether it’s through wall accents, bedding, or a cuddly, plush toy, it will make any little one smile.
Owls are no longer simply associated with fall. Owls are popping up as Christmas ornaments, as Spring decor with bright colors, and even as Valentines Day inspiration, which puts a new twist on the saying “love birds”.
Remember the early bird gets the worm, so don’t be afraid to bring these great feathered friends into your home. It will have your friends hootin’ and hollerin’ over your space!
Interior Design Intern
Mary Sherwood Lake Living…working with you to create your lifestyle!
I am getting ready to travel to one of my favorite places, “Santa” Monica, because that is where I will share Christmas with both our sons and two daughters-in-love. It should be a great week! Our times together involve a lot of relaxing, eating and sharing stories with the newer members of our family. It doesn’t matter where we are, we always find these times together so special.
Last night reminded me of what an incredible acquired family I have right here at Lake Gaston. We had a Christmas dinner at our house for all the MSLL family. The wonderful, talented people who surrounded me are truly amazing. It makes it such a pleasure to come to work each and every day.
Paul, Autumn, Lu, Michelle, Peggy and Yvonne thanks so much!
The rest of my acquired family is every one of you who has supported us, shopped in our showroom, cooked in our new kitchen and asked us to help make your home a comfortable, family place. We have gotten to know you and your family and friends. The circle just keeps getting bigger. Thank you for enlarging our family!
Make this a holiday to remember with your family whether acquired or by nature.
Here are a few pictures of our MSLL Christmas party.
Have a wonderful holiday!
Working with you to create your lifestyle!
Shopping for a special gift for that special someone? Looking for the ideal present for the person who has everything? Don’t get your tinsel in a tangle. Allow Mary Sherwood Lake Living to help you compile the perfect gift basket.
Are they a wine enthusiast? We can combine our E-Z Grip Wine Bottle Opener, Wine-A-Rita Drink Mix, and a package of festive napkins to help them celebrate.
Do they enjoy mixing a cocktail or two? We can combine our Mini Red Ice Bucket, Mini Red Cocktail Shaker, and a jar of Pickle, Olive, and Pearl Onion Cocktail Stirrers to help them conjure up their concoctions.
Are they the chef in their household? We can combine our famous Captain Rodney’s Boucan Glaze, a White Rectangular Baker, and a Knotted Spreader to aid them in preparing Captain Rodney’s Cheese Bake (recipe included).
Do they just deserve to be spoiled? We can combine our Azalea/Ruby Dot Glittens (glove and mittens combination), Leopard Ballet Cozy Slippers, and a Jeweled Photo Frame to help comfort them.
Still stumped? Come visit us at Mary Sherwood Lake Living or give us a call at 252.586.2437 to help you with just the right combination for the loved ones on your list.
Happy Holidays and Happy Shopping from Mary Sherwood Lake Living!
Mary Sherwood Lake Living working with you to create your lifestyle!
With the holidays quickly upon us, everyone is eager to make a meal plan that will provide their family and friends tasty dishes with minimal prep and stress. This Saturday, December 8th, our favorite local chef Yvonne Hoffman will be having a Home for the Holidays Cooking Class at Mary Sherwood Lake Living at 10 a.m.
She will be serving a crowned pork roast with cornbread, apple, and pecan filling, brussel sprouts salad with a lemon vinaigrette, and sweet potato hash along with other ideas to accent your holiday meal.
Also, coming up on Tuesday, December 11th, Chef Yvonne will be providing seasonal breakfast and brunch ideas to warm you and your family. Please give us a call at 252.586.2437 to reserve your space for either class and savor our variety of delectible holiday samplings.
Mary Sherwood Lake Living working with you to create your lifestyle!
Yes, friends there will be a Christmas tree at the Sherwood’s Lake Gaston home this Christmas! Some of our friends were beginning to worry there would not be any sign of holiday cheer at our house by the time our family arrives. Have no fear, we once again have a “live” Christmas tree. Here is the story…
Being in the retail and design business we are often very busy at this time of year. As our business and children were growing up and time was at a premium, Aaron and Jake began to question “if” and what kind of tree we would have. Traditionally it was always a live tree, sometimes collected from a local tree farm or the local Jaycee’s lot. In 2002, having waited until the last minute, I rushed to Wildwood Nursery in search of a live tree. They were too large, too tall or too expensive, so I had to re-group. Wondering through the nursery I spotted a Pom Pom Topiary Juniper. It was not very big but had a very interesting shape. Could I make this work as a Christmas tree? I am always up for a challenge! My youngest son, Jake, at that time, always arrived home for Christmas late in the night from NJ. I had promised him a real tree! So, he first laid eyes on this tree while everyone else was sleeping. In the morning he said, “Mom, what have you done? You decorated a “broccoli” tree for Christmas! Thus the saga of the potted Christmas trees began. Here is the pictorial version of the saga from 2002 to today, http://bit.ly/vFOmDz.
So this past weekend once again we set out on the quest for a tree. Again Wildwood Nursery was able to oblige. We found a beautiful potted ‘Carolina Sapphire’ Cypress tree about 5’ tall. This type of Cypress is a very airy looking tree with aromatic, pale blue-grey foliage. Because the foliage is so wispy, developing a decorating scheme took some thought.
I began with the lights placed close to the trunk. Tulle mesh ribbon in three colors, white, red and turquoise, and lime stretchy ribbon was added for the garland. Last but certainly not least, an assortment of light weight glass ornaments created the finishing touch!
Yes, we do have a tree and a few other Christmas baubles and bangles.
Thank you for reading this story! It helped me remember how precious these holiday memories will always be in our lives with the people we love.
Enjoy your holidays wherever you may be. Make some memories!
Moving on to Install Day 2 we concentrated on the guest bedroom/home office in the MBR wing of the house. Our previous post told you a little about our client and the house. If you missed the first day’s events check out our blog: “This is What the Lake Gaston Girls Do in Dallas.” With the master bedroom basically complete we focused on to the guest bedroom/home office. This space is to function both as the small, comfortable private retreat/computer space for the owners and transform into a well- appointed guest room when needed.
In this space we dealt with the window that grew (mentioned in our last post)! Autumn, very skillfully, stretched the window treatment by adding a panel to the rear to make it 5″ wider. The treatment is a “faux” (or fixed) roman shade. We embellished the bottom with trim and hand-made buttons by NC potter, Courtney Tomchik.
With the use of a Murphy bed this space can switch easily into a place for guests. This was the room I stayed in during our visit. I actually slept with Mr. Murphy…the bed that is! 🙂 It is amazing how easily it converts! What a great solution for a multi-use space. Below are pictures in this order: the closed Murphy bed with four sets of bookcases, the Murphy bed frame behind the two center bookcases, and the Murphy bed ready to bed down guests. The bookshelves in this Murphy unit are crying for accessories. That will have to happen on our next visit!
To complete the space we added two very comfy Four Season swivel-glider slipcovered chairs! The slipcovers make the seating very pet friendly for the two dogs, Q-ee and Lew-ee! A small, mobile laptop desk, flat screen TV and small shelf for the receiver complete the owner’s retreat.
The owner’s comment: “I love this space! I’m not sure I want to share it with guests!
Hope you like this space! Tell us what you think!
More areas of the Dallas project to be revealed in our next post.
“Working with you to create your lifestyle at Lake Gaston and beyond.”
Just wanted to say,”Hi”. I haven’t had much to say lately…been too busy…my wife’s been working me too hard!! Now, Mary and I are getting ready for a Christmas trip to the west coast to visit with our two sons and their significant others. Mary’s gotten us great travel arrangements: direct flights both east and west…so Thursday night we drive to Charlotte and Friday its off to the “left coast”. Big plans…meeting our older son’s girlfriend…having Christmas…renting a motorcycle for a day.
This is a great time of year and one thing I don’t want to forget is to thank all of you for the interest you’ve shown in what Mary and I have going on. Between your responses to the social networking and your presence in our lives (read “store”) we have much to appreciate.
Mary and I wish all of you the happiest of holidays and we’ll be back from LA with stories to tell!
Well, today I believe Paul has finally arrived at a level he thought he was unlikely to achieve. After his bantering and complaining about the lack of respect regarding his gift wrapping skills he has received a glowing testimonial from our customer, Peggy Freeman. Not only is his competency no longer a secret we now have a video of Peggy’s statement. Visit our YouTube channel to share in Paul’s glory. Testimonial of Paul\’s Gift Wrapping Skills (Turn up your speakers, we are still trying to get the hang of this video thing…thanks).
Let’s keep the challenge going by requesting Paul’s gift wrap for your next gift. Let’s have him prove this newly exposed talent. He might just develop a new signature wrap for Mary Sherwood Lake Living.
Some days I wonder how far we will go to provide good customer service. 🙂 And it doesn’t get any better than having a husband who will gift wrap. Just think of the possibilities at Christmas! We are always looking for a topic for our next special event. How about Gift Wrapping 101 for Guys by Paul?
Let us hear your comments and stories about the secret skills of gift wrapping and your partner.