Ok, so it's been a while. A looong while! But can you blame me? I've had my hands full with a precocious lil one who loves keeping me on my toes. When it comes to the moments of spare time I manage to come by, I try not to fill it with anything but planting my butt firmly on the couch and breathing deeply. Fast forward 6 months and we're approaching the very same time of year that was responsible for lighting a flame under said butt to start this blog. So here we go again. With renewed interest and motivation, I'll try being better at spewing my own version of what's beautiful and important in life onto the world wide web (do we call it that anymore?) Of course, it's easy to find the beauty in things this time of year. I love that we feel compelled to adorn ever little corner of our lives for the holidays, so none of that is lost on me. Here's how I decked the halls for the holidays.
This year, we have a toddler AND a puppy. Some might not even want to deal with a challenge like that, but I would not be able to enjoy Christmas fully without some decorations. I put on my brave, big girl panties and got to work, working with what we had. I pulled out the Christmas bins and started the ritual sorting of ornaments and testing of lights. Of course, the foundation of any good Christmas decor is the tree. When I have to cut corners on holiday decor, I do it everywhere else but the tree. After learning the hard way that cheap trees (a) don't hold up ornaments, (b) go sad, dull and limp after a week, and (c) leave an insane amount of needles on the floor, we upgrade to the more plush and sturdy fresh trees. This year, we went with a Noble Fir for $7/ft from our local tree farm. Add some white lights, gold ribbon, and ornaments in a deliberate color scheme (this year is, red, gold, and silver) and voila-it's Christmas! I add some cheap, faux fur fabric around the base for a snow effect.
Admittedly, I'm a tree snob. I like a pretty, adult tree, while my husband prefers a tree done with more childlike abandon. Hence, a tradition was born this year! We've been buying fresh trees for a few years now, but have a fake tree from back in day. I took the top portion only, attached the base and set it up in our daughter's room. It's insanely adorable in there!!! It has all her "baby's first christmas" ornaments on it and other keepsakes and fun craft ornaments. We've decided to set it up every year (maybe in the playroom), and as she collects more of her own ornaments and we have more kids to collect their own, it will become even more adorable.
As for the rest of the house, I went pretty minimal. Watching the trees are enough work. A few garlands over the windows and I decided I was done.
This is the first year I've decorated the outside of a house. I have to say, I'm very proud of myself! Not that it's particularly over-the-top or grand, but it makes me feel like a REAL homeowner (even though I've been a real homeowner for over a year already). My crowning achievement is the garland door hanger I made from branches we had to cut off the bottom of our tree for some clearance. I took some floral wire I had on hand and secured the branches on top of each other. Then I made a bow with a random spool of ribbon (not the exact color I would have chosen, but it's what I had). I secured the bow and a few ornaments to the branches with the wire, made a loop and hung it up! It's so pretty and welcoming as you come to the door. I'll probably be doing this every year now.
I'll do a post on how I made this big bow. I winged it, so it's really quite simple. Don't know if I did it technically right, but it turned out pretty.
I used a can of snow ($1.50 from Walmart) to frost the front windows, much to the delight of my 14 month old daughter banging on the window from the inside. Then we had some fun playing with cling on snowflakes to create our own white Christmas.
A few strings of icicle lights looped into the already installed hooks (thank you previous home owner) and we are ready for some hot cocoa and jingle bells.