Holidays, Christmas Chaos


Okay, so I am very lucky to have a son that not only likes to cook, but he has a remodeling business and always is fixing things around my house…BUT it’s not always at the most convenient times!





Who wants a construction crew in their house the week before Christmas?

No one! 

So it’s a down time for them and that’s when I seem to get a lot of attention!





Last year they painted the dining room on December 23…  And we had a luncheon December 24 😅





Back in October,  HHjr suggested putting an outdoor fireplace on our patio. For years I have been semi considering  making some sort of outdoor room or possibly a screened in porch…

A tall outdoor fireplace is the solution I’ve been looking for!


Outdoor Fireplaces Pinterest Board



The patio isn’t large, but it backs up to woods and it’s very private.  We have spent many evenings and cool days out there around a fire pit and in the fall we watched football on a big screen TV mounted on the wall and kept cool with large fans

Alabama winters are mostly moderate, 40-60 degrees, so it’s very possible to enjoy outdoor living often




HHr has a smoker, a gas grill and a Big Green Egg, and one or two are going almost daily

We are going to add a pizza oven and build in the Big Green Egg





Originally when we made this decision he didn’t have the time or the desire to build it…





I did a few rough sketches and asked a local hardscape company for a bid





The bid came back high and we contacted some other companies for comparable bids, and couldn’t get any action…

Finally last week HHjr said “I’m just going to build it myself, I want it done!!”





These two trees were bought when they were small enough to plant in pots flanking the front door, and as they grew we replanted them on the patio and now they are 10 feet+ tall





The fireplace will be centered between them, opposite the den chimney, with the pizza oven on one side and the Big Green Egg on the other





This is a very rough sketch, but the good news is HHjr and I can modify it as he builds it so it will turn out exactly the way we want






Things are whizzing along…





Do you think this will be finished by Christmas Eve?





We’ve also had some other construction going on…





This is the third year in a row, and I am proud of my building crew



Aren’t they adorable?





Are you in holiday Chaos?

Well, that’s just part of the fun!!


Sweet Sugarplum Fantasy





I will be joining these fabulous parties and blogs:

Meal Plan Monday  Dishing it & Digging it,   Between Naps on the Porch,

Merry Monday   Make it Pretty Monday    Celebrate and Decorate,

Delicious Dishes Recipe Party   Oh My Heartsie Girl  Full Plate Thursday

Thursday Favorite Things  Creatively Crafty   Home Matters 

Weekend Potluck   Sweet Inspirations   Happiness is Homemade

52 Responses to “Holidays, Christmas Chaos”
  1. chef mimi says:

    I can’t wait to see it finished! So lucky you have a handy husband. Merry Christmas!

  2. Rita C. says:

    I did have construction one year at Christmastime, and it makes for total chaos, yes. My guess it that it WILL be done by Christmas. It’s going to be really nice, and you have a great son. Oh, yea, and a great mini crew too. 😉

  3. Lynn says:

    Your construction is very exciting Jenna! No doubt the outdoor fireplace will be beautiful and used often! Lovin’ the gingerbread houses-happy holiday fun with the kids:@)

  4. Sharon Mann says:

    Lots going on at your home, go with the flow, right! I have a son who helps me too, with the fix ups.

  5. Shannon@Belle Bleu Interiors says:

    Jenna, our dream is to build an outdoor fireplace with a pizza oven. I know you must be excited, and I can’t wait to see it when you are finished. Also, your gingerbread building crew is precious! Happy Sunday!!!

    • Thank you Shannon, when it’s finished I will do a post about cost and details. We are lucky because my son gets a lot of stuff wholesale at builder cost so that’s a big plus!

  6. Jodi says:

    so exciting! will be lovely for your Fall football festivities especially!

  7. pattyanneart says:

    Very exciting! Can’t wait to see your outdoor fireplace.
    The gingerbread crew is so adorable!! ❤️

  8. charlotte says:

    Jenna, love the plans for the outdoor fireplace! I’ve had similar plans (in my head) for years. Probably won’t happen for me, but my daughter & son-in-law are planning one for their back patio for sure. As they live close by, I will be able to enjoy theirs often. Good luck with yours and Merry Christmas!

    Charlotte Hall

  9. That fireplace is going to be gorgeous!! Love the plan. Have a great week, Jenna.

  10. Betty Butkiewicus says:

    WOW, a very big under taking. You are going to love it. Can not wait to see the finish project.

    Betty Butkiewicus

  11. Kari says:

    Jenna what a lovely Christmas present…and even though it is close to Christmas, I still like the excitement of a project going on. I know, perhaps I am weird. I am hoping to do a kitchen make-over in the very near future. Your little builders are so sweet, and what wonderful memories! Hugs sweet friend.

  12. Linda says:

    Wow Jenna, I cannot wait to see it finished. I have always wanted an outdoor fireplace, plus a pizza oven. Your plans are perfect. Your gingerbread group had way too much fun! Wishing you lots of merry.

  13. Wow – This will be perfect for you and your family and I am sure it will be finished by the 24th!! I think your little construction crew is adorable and they made beautiful homes!! Have a merry Christmas!!

  14. diane in northern wis says:

    Can’t wait to see your outdoor fireplace. How fun. Blessings to your son, who is quite the mastermind! What a great gift for you!

  15. Cyndi Raines says:

    What a wonderful Christmas present! The fun you all will have making more delicious memories! Lol Your grands are too cute! I know they enjoyed their building project also!

  16. Lorraine says:

    What a great way to extend your living and entertaining space, not to mention, if the power goes out, you will be able to cook just about anything out there. I can’t wait to see it finished.

  17. Oh, how I wish I still lived in my home state of Alabama… I can’t wait to see the end result. It sounds like you have a wonderful family… Merry Christmas!

  18. Jenna, that is so exciting and I can imagine all the fun times that you will have in your new space. An outdoor fireplace will be great for the Alabama games and your mini crew members are darling. EM and I are going to make a gingerbread house today❤️

  19. How fun, that fireplace is going to be a real show stopper! Gather your s’mores ingredients, you’ll need them!

  20. Jill Kuhn says:

    Hi Jenna, I can’t wait to see your finished outdoor fireplace! 😃 How exciting! Nice to have it done the way you want it too. ❤️ I enjoyed seeing the Gingerbread houses your grandkids made. A sweet memory for them too! 🍭

  21. I hate it when Rick gets on a tear during times like this. Grateful, yes — but you can’t wait a week? Still — it’ll be fabulous!

  22. Mary says:

    Adorable construction crew Jenna! 🙂 How awesome to have a son that’s so handy and talented! Your outdoor kitchen will be awesome, I’ll have pizza oven-envy!

  23. Mary says:

    P.S. Someone might mistake you for a Tigers fan from the shot of the field on your TV :))

  24. lisa says:

    Nice to have it done the way you want it to. I enjoyed seeing the Gingerbread houses your grandkids made. A sweet memory for them too. I can’t wait to see the end result. It sounds like you have a wonderful family, I am hoping to do a kitchen makeover in the very near future. Your little builders are so sweet, and what wonderful memories, Merry Christmas. Retaining Walls

    • Thanks so much Lisa! We have a gingerbread house decorating party every year…this year I asked my oldest grandson, who is 12, if he was too old and he said, “you’re never too old to decorate gingerbread houses!” So sweet!!

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