Here is our Christmas tree in the family room. I use our formal living room as my office area and part of my workshop, so all of our life happens in this family room and the kitchen! I cannot capture the beauty and magic of our Christmas decor in photographs... but really, they are so lovely in person! (And if you click on the image below, it will enlarge, and you can see one of my favorite things, there on the wall. It is a Mary Engelbreit pie plate that says "Bless this Home". It was a gift from my sweet friend Robin from Colorado... one of my best friends ever!!! I get to think of her everytime I see it!)
I always start my tree decorating with white lights, white beads and white bows. (I have actually tied the same bows on my tree every year for 20 years!) I then add a lot of dark red and some gold ball ornaments. After those basics are completed, out come the assorted ornaments. This year, I let the kids complete the tree decorating. Since we have enough ornaments for two trees, it is quite full of pretty pretties. Many are very bunched together, on top of each other, even. But, you know what? I love it! It is so not perfect, but it is our best tree ever. And I love that the kids made it that way.
When my mother retired, she became a quilter. For my birthday in 2000 her 8th quilt was this beautiful tree skirt she made for me (I love that she labels all her quilts!). I am proud to have it under my tree. And, we do see it for much of the Christmas season... especially these last few, leaner years!
Here is a peek at a few of my favorite ornaments. This one is my very, very favorite, and is from my childhood tree. My mother said it was a gift from my German babysitter, Frau Grau, when I was three years old! We were living in Germany at the time, and my brother was a baby. It is a teeny, tiny Nativity. We always loved that a little tree light would fit into the little hole in the back to have light fall on baby Jesus! Yes, this ornament is almost as old as I am.
I found these little papa and mama bear dolls at a sweet little shop one year, long ago. I have always loved them. I put them in a prominent spot to signify Gil & I. Right next to them, is an ornament commemorating our first Christmas together! I met Gil on New Year's Eve 1995... In 1996 we had our first date, got married, celebrated our first Christmas, and then on December 28th, welcomed Zachary into the world! It was a very good year.
We rearranged the family room to make room for the tree. The kitchen table is over to the right, in front of that window.
And here is a view from the kitchen! I just love my Nesterfied garland on the mantle! I used the same garland last year, too!
Again, I cannot even begin to capture it's beauty, but it is two garlands put together, with white lights and other greenery stuffed in. I have fake poinsettias and feathers in the two corners. I love adding bows, too!
This year, I took other relics from my childhood and added them to the garland... I have these old cookie cutters that are so beautiful. Last year I had the bright idea to use them as ornaments on our tree. But this year I thought it would be more fun to highlight the collection all in one place and put them on the garland!
Here is my last stop on the tour today... a happy little corner of my kitchen counter! I am just loving that in addition to celebrating Christ and His glorious birth, Christmas is an opportunity to reflect on family memories. Merry Christmas!
I am so excited to particpate in The Nester's Christmas Tour of homes! Click on her button above to see more "tour" homes and Christmas ideas.