What Santa Brought Us

This was an exciting Christmas because in all of our seven December 25ths together, we’ve never woke up in our own beds to open the presents under our own tree as a family (i.e. we’d always traveled elsewhere).

We did meet up with a bunch of relatives later in the morning to open gifts as one big crazy Petersik family, but we snuck in some present opening time as just the four of us earlier in the morning. Especially since Santa brought one little Petersik something extra special this year (as mentioned in great detail here)…

Along with her play-kitchen Clara got lots of clothes, books, toys, and that favorite leopard hat of hers. But since we always get asked what we got each other, let’s get into that. First off, I stalked Sherry’s Pinterest page to learn that she wanted these Kendra Scott earrings – which look quite good on her, if I may say so.

She also got me a couple of dangly things in the form of two bicycle ornaments (well, technically one’s a moped) from Crate & Barrel to fuel my new obsession with bike art. It provided the perfect opportunity to pose next to my dad with the gift that we got him – a bicycle parts shirt from Etsy (unlike me, my dad’s love of bikes extends to actually riding them regularly).

Sherry and I both ended up getting each other art too, which was kind of funny. Sherry made me a very sweet Boy Scout merit badge collage for all the “skills that I excel at” that she was inspired to create after seeing some vintage badges on eBay for woodworking that she thought I deserved (they were selling for something like $80, so she called a friend whose son has tons of boy scout/eagle scout badges and just scanned and returned them). Then she printed the ones that “applied to me,” cut them out, and taped them in a grid on some navy craft paper leftover from our old living room art.

The sweet part is that she used the actual name of the merit badge to express something she loves about me, is thankful to me for, or that’s meaningful to us both.

She even typed up and framed a key to explain everything. I laughed out loud at letter P, which was a badge featuring a squirrel icon.

We haven’t figured out where to hang it yet, but I love how simple and graphic (and funny!) it is. It looks great with the curtains in the dining room, so it might end up there.  On the other hand, Sherry had my gift to her hung before the day was over. That girl is fast!

It’s there on the far left, and it’s a custom poster that I bought from A Vintage Poster. It’s a weird story, but this is a line from an episode of Toddlers & Tiaras (um, not that we watch that show – it was just on in the background one day). They introduced one little girl to the stage with this gem that perfectly epitomizes childhood innocence: “When Emerald grows up, she wants to be a photographer… or an octopus.” I altered the quote a bit and A Vintage Poster did a bang up job converting it into a fun little one-of-a-kind poster that only makes sense to us.

Who doesn’t need a refreshing reminder to dream big every once and a while? And the coral color looks so great with Clara’s painting next to it.

Speaking of big dreams, Clara, Burger and I also gave Sherry something to encourage her to pursue one of her former hobbies: art. She’s got her BFA and originally went to school to be an artist, but life has kinda pushed that aside. I’ve heard her say more than once while watching Work of Art on Bravo that she misses it, so we snagged her some paints and a gift certificate to a local art supply store (intentionally not Michael’s or somewhere she could spend it on house projects instead). Oh, and don’t mind my goof on the card – I’m so used to signing “John & Sherry” that I forgot she wasn’t giving this to herself. #ChristmasPresentFAIL

Let’s see – what am I forgetting? Oh yeah, Sherry got these funny little buttons that perfectly sum up our relationship for me here on Etsy.

Knowing my nerdiness, she also got me a “tech” gift  in the form of a remote for our camera (because I’ve often mentioned that it’d be helpful to have around). After all, the world needs more photos like this, right?

The remote also let me snap a pic of the other random gift I got Sherry, even though it’s really for me to wear. Ready for it? Check out the shirt that I bought from zazzle. Yes, I had to “design” it myself, as no pre-made shirts that say “white ceramic husband” seem to exist.  

Yeah, I’m a super dork. Ten bonus points every time you spot me wearing it while doing projects around the house. I figure I need something to round out the ol’ soda t-shirt collection.

Oh, and don’t worry – Burger wasn’t forgotten. He’s just not a morning person – er, morning pup (?) – so he had to have his presents delivered to him in bed. Here he is with the lion toy Clara picked out for him.

And there’s a great stretching/smiling photo of him here. On that note, I think we’ve more than exhausted our run down of Christmas goodies between this post and this morning’s play kitchen extravaganza. What’d you guys get or give his year? Anything especially awesome? Something DIY or house related?

Psst- We just shared a HUGE CHRISTMAS POST full of family pics and even more holiday details over on Young House Life, so you can check that out here.


  1. says

    Well, Santa didn’t bring me anything at all . . . but my DH got me . . . wait for it:

    a Kreg Jig! :o)

    I’m pretty stoked. And I love that t-shirt, John. Awesome!

  2. says

    Great gifts! They are all so thoughtful–which are the best kind. Chris surprised me with WICKED tickets and I teared up and I got him a leatherman which I am 90% sure he likes. hahaha. For our little girl, we got her a Prince Lionheart Wheely Bug…that is actually a cow. Proof that not all toys are created equal. This one is seriously stylish and I don’t even mind it hanging out in our living room.

    (scroll down to see what we enthusiastically call, “Wheely Cow!!”

  3. Ann L says

    White ceramic husband shirt? In the words of Rachel Zoe…Ba-na-nas (or is it ba-nan-as?)!! Such a cute gift idea, even if it is for you to wear.


    • Ann L says

      Watched a RZProject marathon on Bravo so all of her “isms” are stuck in my head. I actually said “I die for this” in reference to one of my ornaments while undecorating my tree during said marathon.

      Luckily, only my dogs were around to hear me.

  4. says

    I love how sweet and personal your gifts to each other are! Too cute. My adorable fiance bought me an oil-rubbed bronze Eiffel Tower statue that I’ve been lusting over for the past five years.

  5. Sophie says

    My favourite present has to be one of the ones from my parents. I’m training to teach little kids so they bought me something to help me out when I’m on practicum. Wait for it…


    I know, I know, sometimes they think they have a three year old instead of a grown up lady for a daughter.
    Though my puppets may or may not have already ‘met’ various friends via skype. They all think I’m completely nuts XD

    • says

      Shucks, that’s sweet of you to say! I feel like my skin has never been worse because we’re not sleeping like we should be! Soon though! 2012 is going to be the year I sleep like a normal person. Haha.


  6. Kate says

    Besides some clothes, my husband got an air compressor and I got a miter saw (part of that was for my birthday, but they merge together; my birthday’s Dec 28th), which should both be great for the projects we have lined up for the coming year! My gifts to my husband were rather uninspired, but he got me a ring from Etsy that has a sweet message stamped on the inside (well, I showed him the ring but he picked out what to write in it).

    I also got a bit of birthday money that I’m planning to use on a Kreg Jig, woot!

  7. Jyl says

    I giggled at photographer or Octopus.
    I laughed a little at the crafty wife and nerdy husband pins, cos that sounds like me and my husband…

    But I laughed so hard that I honked (I have a cold) when I got to “White Ceramic Husband” for a good minute at least.

    John Petersik you are a riot. And deserve a merit badge for willing to play along. Merry Christmas, Petersiks!

    • says

      Haha- that’s what I said! After we opened gifts I was already thinking of new merit badges he had earned for present giving and wanting to update his frame! Haha.


  8. says

    You guys are ADORABLE and totally just brightened my day. I love all the thoughtful and creative gifts you got each other…. and the White Ceramic Husband shirt is the icing. LOL. Love it!!! Happy 2012 to you and your family.

  9. Annabelvita says

    Love it all! That octopus art is my fave.
    My boyfriend got me a bright red kitchenaid (I’m so in love!) but my favourite small present was a set of hankies my mum made for me out of my old pyjamas- so sweet ( you can see em here: http://Annabelvita.com/pyjamas, along with a toy cat I made out of pyjamas)

  10. says

    love those earrings on your $her-dog!

    p.s. i thought the poster said “photographer FOR an octopus”… i am still laughing at it both ways though!

    merry merry merry to you guys

  11. says

    I’m glad someone else also watches Work of Art! That show definitely makes me want to be an artist too. Although I did not major in art. Go figure.

  12. Debbie says

    i got a range rover for xmas, complete w/ the huge red bow. we’ve been talking about getting me a new vehicle since this summer, but w/ re-modeling yet another home, it got put on the back burner. also when we were in NYC for new years, i was treated to an all day shopping fest at barneys, where i did some serious damage. i got the bf a new telescope that mead had been building for nine months. i was really starting to think it wouldnt get here in time (it arrived 12/23) & custom floor mats for the vette w/ his aviation co logo on them.

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