At the front entrance, I planted miniature Christmas trees in our year-round silver Ikea pots. These will last all winter, no matter the severe temperatures. On the front door is a wreath I made with supplies from Michaels. I wrapped printed burlap ribbon around a styrofoam wreath base. Once that was secured, I glued on faux florals and berries along with two little cardinals.
When you walk in our front door, you'll instantly find yourself in the dining room. I like to decorate with items that are not just pretty but also meaningful. On the china cabinet, I placed a strand of garland and added berries and pinecones. My favorite decor piece here is a glass block my uncle made that looks like a present. Next to that is a framed picture of my children. The frame reads, "Best gift ever." I upgraded our usual floral arrangement by adding more red berries and added a fresh strand of garland on our dining room table runner. I love the Advent book on the cabinet, that allows us to read the story of Christ's birth, piece by piece throughout December. Each day we read one gorgeously illustrated page and the next day we reread the story from the beginning, adding another part of the story. This helps keep our focus on Christ.
Beyond the dining room sits our living room. I keep a chalkboard sign on top of the fireplace all year and write new sayings as the seasons change. On either side of the sign I placed small paper deer. I love these ones in particular as they're made out of old phone books and add a touch of uniqueness. Under the mantle hangs our stockings. I wanted each one to be different but fit the neutral winter palette. I sewed on a button or broach and tied on a handwritten name tag to distinguish each stocking. On the back wall, I placed another strand of faux garland, and berries along with a strand of white lights. Last year, our daughter's school was littered with pinecones and I took some home to add to the garland. On the repurposed shutter table, I added driftwood decor I found at Marshalls. I decorated our piano with a few family pictures from Christmases past and placed a bin full of seasonal books on a side table. I also added white cable knit pillows to our couch, which can stay out all year. Lastly, we dressed our tree. We keep it simple, with multicolored lights, ornaments bought on vacations, and crafts made by the kids. There are no fancy color-coded, themed trees here. In fact, only the top half sports ornaments this year as our eighteen month old toddles around the house. I love our hodgepodge tree that's personal to just us.
The rest of our house is pretty quiet on the Christmas front, there are holiday books on the kids' bedside tables and a small tree Adeline decorated in her room. I also hung stockings in the kids' rooms that were given as gifts. All over the house, you'll find pieces of a Little People's Christmas set to keep the reason for the season present. Of course, they can't possibly all stay together.
We could be one of several places around the world this time next year. For now, I'm soaking up the woodsy feel here in New York and counting down the days until we celebrate the birth of our Savior. Merry Christmas, All, and happy decorating!