We’ve been busy, busy, busy! It’s that time of year, isn’t it? Here are the first five things from the last couple of weeks that come to mind!
We went to the tree farm last week and we had perfect weather for it this year, yet again. I don’t know how we manage to get so lucky with this, but we had our first significant snowfall of the year arrive on the day we planned to visit the tree farm for the second year in a row. We have a fake tree in our living room that I get to decorate however I like, but then we always get a real tree for the kitchen and decorate it with all of our fun ornaments that we’ve collected or made over the years. Kennedy calls it our “tacky tree”. 🙂 It’s really an anything goes kind of situation and we all just add whatever we like. It keeps everyone happy and the best part is that we get that real Christmas tree smell all throughout the side of the house with the kitchen and the mudroom.
We had our annual Christmas cookie exchange last week. This is something I do with a few of my neighbour friends every year. We all love to cook, bake, and share food so this gives us another excuse to do this with just the moms, but also gets us set up for any little gatherings that we’ll be hosting or need to bring something for. We try to do it early in December and we make sure everything is freezable, so we can just stick the cookies in the freezer and bring them out whenever we need them over the following few weeks. I made the pinwheel cookies that you see here this year and I love how fun and festive they are. Will definitely be sharing the recipe for those soon!
It’s a fresh greenery year at our house this year. I go back and forth on how I feel about bringing fresh greenery into the house. Some years I think it’s the most charming, lovely thing for Christmas, and other years I just can’t stand the mess and just want something convenient and easy that won’t shed everywhere. I decided this year that I wouldn’t mind the little bit of extra work that comes with using fresh, and I’ve actually already switched out the cedar on the mantel once because it was getting a little crispy. I love the way the greenery looks, of course, but I think my real motivation this year is that I can just compost everything on the creek bank this year, or burn it if I’m feeling really ambitious. And I won’t have anything extra to store in the basement when the season is over! I’ve been pairing down our Christmas bins this year and I’m almost at the point where everything actually fits on the shelves, so I’m willing to do just about anything at this point to keep it that way. 🙂
I’m working on doing a better job of putting together appropriately-festive Christmas outfits for all of us this year. Well, maybe not for Chris, but for the rest of us. 🙂 I find that this is one area where I always get caught off-guard and I think “Oh, right. It would have been nice for all of us to dress up a little bit for this.” And then it’s kind of too late. And then I seem to always forget when the next year rolls around. I always like to keep our drawers and closets as decluttered as possible and that probably subconsciously deters me from buying things that will only get worn a handful of times per year, but those few festive items are still important to have for when you need them. I think the key for me is to make sure that I have room to store these things before I buy them, and then to not get too excited and overdo it once I start looking at all of the fun things available. That theory kind of goes for anything that I add into our home, but it definitely applies here too. I want to have just exactly what we want and need, and not too much more.
Jack’s Christmas shirt this year is in a plaid pretty much identical to this (his is in more of a poplin fabric, but that seems to be sold out) and he’s really into it actually. 🙂 Kennedy added this cozy plaid sweater (now on sale) to her Christmas list, which I think is a great “teenager-friendly” option for festive clothing. I have one blousy-type shirt from last Christmas that’s actually in the exact same plaid as the shirt I ordered for Jack, which was a hilarious accident, but as I’ve said before, I’m all about staying warm this year so I’m thinking something like this sweater or this super cozy-looking (yet still festive) one might be a much better choice for keeping me feeling holly jolly.
We’re doing our Christmas Eve Box tradition again. We used to have a Christmas Eve party to go to every year, but that family member stopped hosting it and we found more and more people were out of town anyway. So that kind of left us stuck with nothing to do that night, which can feel a little sad for the kids. A couple of years ago, I came up with this Christmas Eve box idea and it was a hit! At one point in October this year Jack suddenly yelled out “Two months until Christmas Eve Box!”, so if that isn’t a sign that this idea is working, I don’t know what is. It turns out to be a great pandemic-friendly way to spend Christmas Eve as well if you’re living in an area where large gatherings are restricted right now. You can throw your box together pretty quickly as a last-minute thing if you suddenly realize that you have nothing fun for the family to do that night, but I’ve had mine done for a few weeks now since I’ve been so organized this year. I wrote a blog post last year explaining how it all works if this sounds like it might be a great solution for your family too!
NEWS AND FINDS
-Do you remember those fleece-lined tights I mentioned awhile back? I went ahead and ordered them and they were even better than I had hoped. They might seem like a bit of an investment as far as tights go, but they’re 100% worth every penny. So fluffy, but still flattering. If you’re always chilly like me, you’ll know as soon as you try them on that you’re going to live in them. I love that they’re actually available in an xxs petite. It’s so hard to find tights that aren’t super loose or way too long on me, so I’m excited that these come in such a great range of sizes. Coziness for everyone!
-I am officially done with decorating for Christmas! That might seem like not a big deal, but it’s a bit of a bigger fuss for me than for most people because of the fact that I want/need to take pictures of things after I decorate them, so I have to try to make things a little closer to perfect. Decorating our porch this year took me about two weeks because I had to keep adding just one more type of greenery, or just one more accent piece. And then I had to wipe every bit of dust off the siding and sweep away every cobweb so they wouldn’t show up in the photos and ruin the whole vibe. It’s always worth it though. It’s a lot of work, but it’s so fun to see it all come together in photo form at the same time.
-My favourite tongs broke after probably about ten years. I did a little search to find a pair to replace them and I ended up finding these works of art in olive wood. Some people have dream cars or dream closets. I have dream tongs. Ha!
-I’m pretty sure that I’ve discovered the perfect Christmas candle. I have a few of these candles in other “seasonless” scents. They’re a bit pricey compared to some others, but they last forever and if I burn one when someone is coming over, it never fails that they comment on how great my house smells. It’s a bit of a luxury, but I think I’ll probably actually still have some of it left when Christmas is done so I’m saving the box so I’ll have it ready to go for next year as well. I love the Grapefruit so much for myself that I bought a few to give as gifts this year. Honorable mentions go to Apricot Tea, and I’ve been wanting to try the Rose Noir and Oud scented one as well.
-I am absolutely in full declutter mode and I’m not adding any more Christmas decor to my collection until I’m sure that I’ve gotten rid of everything I won’t use next year, but this snow day pillow is pretty stinkin’ cute, isn’t it?
-Also stinkin’ cute: This London at Christmas mug. I’m drinking so much Christmas tea this year and I think I’m going to have to work on our Christmas mug game a little bit to along with it.
–These trees are much more sensible, but still fun. 🙂 They’re the kind of thing you could have on your shelf every Christmas for 30 years and never get tired of them, which is really what I’m going for when it comes to Christmas decor these days.
MORE RECENTS POSTS
- Plant-Based Ginger Molasses Cookies
- What to do in December to Prepare for Christmas
- Favourite Christmas Decorating Ideas from Past Years
- Five Things on a Friday 11/19/21
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