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Show me your Christmas decorations and talk about your family traditions 2020

Polabowla

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 15, 2019
Messages
1,474
Thank you! I’ve been collecting Hallmark Ornaments since we were married in 1993. I started off with two that first year and since then I’ve either purchased one if it was a big one or 8 if they were smaller. Through the years I’ve changed brands as well, sometimes I’ve purchased Carlton ornaments. Some years I’ve been lazy and didn’t take them out but I’ve noticed they always get hidden in the branches of every tree, so this year I looked for a tree that I could only hang ornaments on. This one I found is by Hohiya and it’s 7 feet. I added a string of lights to it. It’s really inexpensive and does the work. The color is gold but it’s more of a coppery gold which I like anyway. It comes in black or gold and I purchased directly from the company bc it’s on sale and cheaper than purchasing from Amazon I got it within four days of ordering it.


More pictures of my ornament tree-
The first one I purchased- 6A76D7F3-C8FE-4A3B-8883-134A475D2D0D.jpeg 4862F1BD-777E-45CA-B204-BAFE395A90A3.jpeg FA8BC3E1-6E49-4850-90D6-2843E000A1B3.jpeg 68B1D16C-EC69-49BA-B065-A9DBB18D2F1C.jpeg 8BB74205-6E1E-4BD0-98AF-D607ADEF7D75.jpeg 5ABC21D9-101F-4FAD-9D78-26636B064CF8.jpeg 8CD265CD-CA9F-4E05-85F1-F353F0AD6C04.jpeg
774C717D-34E8-435F-8FD8-0EAD0E03FF83.jpeg image.jpg

Ok that ornament with here comes Amazon is hilarious & perfect!
@kipari and @kayla17 your homes and decorations are beautiful!

@missy I'm laughing over your kitties w the menorah & tree. Healing wishes for Greg!

We celebrate at home with our children. I ordered the gifts already & the kids are eagerly awaiting the holidays!
 

Daisys and Diamonds

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 30, 2019
Messages
8,850
HI:

I am feeling Christmas sooner than ever, because times SUCK, so I put up my tree last week. I only put on my most favorite decorations, so very minimal, but they are the ones I cherish the most--made by my DS was he was little and made in school. Oh and baby's first Christmas type decorations. That's all I need along with the pretty lights. And the poinsettia's--I could have a hundred of those.

@kipari gosh I love your mistletoe and Holly. Always so elegant and festive. I must admit to not know knowing of any superstitions regarding those plants.

In Dec I will decorate the house a bit. I've bought two new NEST candles--one of them "for the season" and it is really gorgeous. Not heavy handed pine, just a hint. Blue Cypress and Snow.

Like others have mentioned, things will be limited because of restrictions. We cannot travel to see our family. Even our DS is a challenge. Such times!!!!!!!!!!! I can cook and bake all I want but it doesn't improved my situation. Normally we go home, stay with my Mother, we go out for a lovely Christmas eve supper and celebrate the next few days with family at different houses. And drink a lot of champagne and eat stuff I never do (mince meat tarts, yanno) . Watch Scrooge. But nothing this year. And I always wonder if we willl have another Christmas with my aging Mother--but it isn't because of her age! Who knew?

We will make the best of it because we can do nothing else. But our cases are on the rise......

Sharon

How will your mum spend Christmas if she can't shear it with you ?
 

kipari

Ideal_Rock
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Jan 9, 2015
Messages
2,786
@kipari Believe it or not, I don't have a copy of the cookie recipe! :o But it's similar to this recipe, but without the lemon, and with lots and lots of confectioners sugar which makes for a wonderful crust on the cookie:

The recipe comes from my Dad's side of the family, which is Slovak.


Mmmhh, so yummy!!!
 

kipari

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 9, 2015
Messages
2,786
We celebrate Yule and put some Krampus on our tree. We also have a book of Krampus stories and we watch the Krampus movie.
This will be the first year in 20 without having to travel to three/four separate houses on Christmas eve/day.
I usually to bake anywhere between 200-400 cookies for family, friends, teachers, bus driver, mail etc.
I would be starting them now...It was a major production to churn them out. Flinging tins in all directions:lol-2: People usually start making noises about it around Halloween. Not professional by any means but they taste divine.
I will only make enough for immediate family this year. It feels weird(secretly a little relieved). I've already promised the kids I'll still make 3 of their favorite types.
DSCF5127 (2).jpg
Does anybody else hide the pickle ornament on their tree?

Mmmhh!! Those look divine!

And yes, I have a real tree with real candles and very traditional ornaments - handmade from Germany, some antique. But I do hide super quirky glass ornaments like that amazing Amazon ornament from @kayla17 on the inner branches and the back.

The kids love to spy those fun personae and I've had a lot of guests lol (we have a bedazzled frog in a bedazzled spaceship etc)
 

Daisys and Diamonds

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 30, 2019
Messages
8,850
@mrs-b i went out tonight after tea when it stoped raining to look at your namesake tree
holy cow im going to have my own little satellite state of Australia back there if i hadn't pulled off all the seed pods
In all this warm and wet the wattle is galloping away like Jack's bean stalk
Gary isn't overly found of it or its fellow countryman the Lilly Lilly so i don't think its goung to be a long term resident :(2
(im hoping to get another spring flowering out of it before Gary gets too serouse then ill use some of its branches to make the rose quartz mobile i want to do)
Unfortunatly i broke a branch trying to reach some seeds but its around the back that isnt visibly from the kitchen window
Tomorrow i might wack what ever lights i can find up on it
 

kipari

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 9, 2015
Messages
2,786
HI:

I am feeling Christmas sooner than ever, because times SUCK, so I put up my tree last week. I only put on my most favorite decorations, so very minimal, but they are the ones I cherish the most--made by my DS was he was little and made in school. Oh and baby's first Christmas type decorations. That's all I need along with the pretty lights. And the poinsettia's--I could have a hundred of those.

@kipari gosh I love your mistletoe and Holly. Always so elegant and festive. I must admit to not know knowing of any superstitions regarding those plants.

In Dec I will decorate the house a bit. I've bought two new NEST candles--one of them "for the season" and it is really gorgeous. Not heavy handed pine, just a hint. Blue Cypress and Snow.

Like others have mentioned, things will be limited because of restrictions. We cannot travel to see our family. Even our DS is a challenge. Such times!!!!!!!!!!! I can cook and bake all I want but it doesn't improved my situation. Normally we go home, stay with my Mother, we go out for a lovely Christmas eve supper and celebrate the next few days with family at different houses. And drink a lot of champagne and eat stuff I never do (mince meat tarts, yanno) . Watch Scrooge. But nothing this year. And I always wonder if we willl have another Christmas with my aging Mother--but it isn't because of her age! Who knew?

We will make the best of it because we can do nothing else. But our cases are on the rise......

Sharon

Aww, Sharon, I understand!! My family is in another country and Macron has announced the rules for Christmas and New Year's yesterday. They'll allow too much for my comfort (travel within France for the holidays) , but no international. So my mom and sister with family are out of reach for me:cry: .

((Hugs))


A nice scent is sooo comforting, though!

And don't skimp on the Champagne!!! And oysters!

You deserve it!

At least our infection numbers have plummeted with the lockdown. Waiting for people in the hospitals to get better and hoping it stays this way!!!!
 

kipari

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 9, 2015
Messages
2,786
I put up “a few of my favorite things” because they remind me of loved ones passed. I love candles in the windows and lighted garlands. I put them up on the fireplace and staircase railing. I am using a table top lighted tree. I am decorated earlier than usual because we’ll be together with the kiddos on Thanksgiving and I wanted to make it festive. They love Christmas even in their 20s.
@kayla17 so beautiful!!! Your home and decor is lovely and serene! Enjoy the holiday in your new home.

This sounds so cosy, @Slick1 ! I hope your thanksgiving with the kids is wonderful!!
 

kipari

Ideal_Rock
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Joined
Jan 9, 2015
Messages
2,786
Thank you! I’ve been collecting Hallmark Ornaments since we were married in 1993. I started off with two that first year and since then I’ve either purchased one if it was a big one or 8 if they were smaller. Through the years I’ve changed brands as well, sometimes I’ve purchased Carlton ornaments. I’ve also kept every single ornament I’ve been gifted with and that my kids have made. They are all on this tree, except for some reason I seem to have misplaced some ornaments with our move. I distinctly remember ones that I can’t find this year.
Some years I’ve been lazy and didn’t take them out but I’ve noticed they always get hidden in the branches of every tree, so this year I looked for a tree that I could only hang ornaments on. This one I found is by Hohiya and it’s 7 feet. I added a string of lights to it. It’s really inexpensive and does the work. The color is gold but it’s more of a coppery gold which I like anyway. It comes in black or gold and I purchased directly from the company bc it’s on sale and cheaper than purchasing from Amazon. I got it within four days of ordering it.


More pictures of my ornament tree-
The first one I purchased- 6A76D7F3-C8FE-4A3B-8883-134A475D2D0D.jpeg 4862F1BD-777E-45CA-B204-BAFE395A90A3.jpeg FA8BC3E1-6E49-4850-90D6-2843E000A1B3.jpeg 68B1D16C-EC69-49BA-B065-A9DBB18D2F1C.jpeg 8BB74205-6E1E-4BD0-98AF-D607ADEF7D75.jpeg 5ABC21D9-101F-4FAD-9D78-26636B064CF8.jpeg 8CD265CD-CA9F-4E05-85F1-F353F0AD6C04.jpeg
774C717D-34E8-435F-8FD8-0EAD0E03FF83.jpeg image.jpg

Wow, those are pretty and fun! And what a good idea to have that ornament tree to decorate them on.



My favourite decorations are these very traditional handmade German angels. They will be on out mantle from dec. 1st:

(This is not mine!! But my mom has that circular stand and the same organ music box, so hers looks like that)

227102020.jpg 227102020.jpg 227102020.jpg
 

Daisys and Diamonds

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 30, 2019
Messages
8,850
Aww, Sharon, I understand!! My family is in another country and Macron has announced the rules for Christmas and New Year's yesterday. They'll allow too much for my comfort (travel within France for the holidays) , but no international. So my mom and sister with family are out of reach for me:cry: .

((Hugs))


A nice scent is sooo comforting, though!

And don't skimp on the Champagne!!! And oysters!

You deserve it!

At least our infection numbers have plummeted with the lockdown. Waiting for people in the hospitals to get better and hoping it stays this way!!!!

Stay safe France
 

kayla17

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 14, 2003
Messages
2,356
I'm sorry @canuk-gal that is very hard. I hope she will not be alone.

@kayla17 where did you find them? They're so funny

I found them on Etsy. Do a search for Amazon ornaments. This year with Covid, I have definitely been using Amazon a lot. Actually who am I kidding, I used Amazon a lot even before Covid.
 

MamaBee

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 31, 2018
Messages
9,088
I’m so excited to see this thread! I didn’t get a chance to read it yet but will do it later....What a treat!
I took some pics for @mrs-b because I know much she loves Christmas.
These are from my house in Pa. Please excuse the high chair and shopping bag in the dining room..I also captured my son’s therapy ball. That thing is huge but I don’t even notice it anymore... I also caught my mom’s chair. She puts dish towels on everything! She’s protecting the arms of the chair. lol I’m here isolating for two weeks but will be back in Pa later. I’ll take those photos when I get back. I just saw the face on Bailey! Hysterical! I love that crazy dog!
60749A91-3F68-4A96-951F-B08137449785.jpeg D8FDA255-EF6C-40B4-88C3-4E2190CCCDE7.jpeg 97085E83-DDD6-4F7D-A293-3FBC724D39F6.jpeg E8F4AE6B-DB3D-4805-893F-5A15E3B43307.jpeg 9964290A-AB12-43D8-B774-0EAE71F6E7CD.jpeg 9EB19E9D-8A62-4E3E-92B5-B6BE80EC7B23.jpeg 48209AF1-0AFB-4E81-8D7B-D36D27250564.jpeg 2F0CFF35-4C9D-4E4D-9BB3-260977E33544.jpeg 07D08D81-88DD-4637-AA49-A8F2DB1EC94B.jpeg
 
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kayla17

Ideal_Rock
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Joined
Jan 14, 2003
Messages
2,356
I’m so excited to see this thread! I didn’t get a chance to read it yet but will do it later....What a treat!
I took some pics for @mrs-b because I know much she loves Christmas.
These are from my house in Pa. Please excuse the high hair and shopping bag in the dining room..I also captured my son’s therapy ball. That thing is huge but I don’t even notice it anymore...lol I’m here isolating for two weeks but will be back in Pa later. I’ll take those photos when I get back. I just saw the face in Bailey! Hysterical! I love that crazy dog!
60749A91-3F68-4A96-951F-B08137449785.jpeg D8FDA255-EF6C-40B4-88C3-4E2190CCCDE7.jpeg 97085E83-DDD6-4F7D-A293-3FBC724D39F6.jpeg E8F4AE6B-DB3D-4805-893F-5A15E3B43307.jpeg 9964290A-AB12-43D8-B774-0EAE71F6E7CD.jpeg 9EB19E9D-8A62-4E3E-92B5-B6BE80EC7B23.jpeg 48209AF1-0AFB-4E81-8D7B-D36D27250564.jpeg 2F0CFF35-4C9D-4E4D-9BB3-260977E33544.jpeg 07D08D81-88DD-4637-AA49-A8F2DB1EC94B.jpeg

Love your decorations! I love Christmas time!
 

kipari

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 9, 2015
Messages
2,786
I’m so excited to see this thread! I didn’t get a chance to read it yet but will do it later....What a treat!
I took some pics for @mrs-b because I know much she loves Christmas.
These are from my house in Pa. Please excuse the high chair and shopping bag in the dining room..I also captured my son’s therapy ball. That thing is huge but I don’t even notice it anymore... I also caught my mom’s chair. She puts dish towels on everything! She’s protecting the arms of the chair. lol I’m here isolating for two weeks but will be back in Pa later. I’ll take those photos when I get back. I just saw the face on Bailey! Hysterical! I love that crazy dog!
60749A91-3F68-4A96-951F-B08137449785.jpeg D8FDA255-EF6C-40B4-88C3-4E2190CCCDE7.jpeg 97085E83-DDD6-4F7D-A293-3FBC724D39F6.jpeg E8F4AE6B-DB3D-4805-893F-5A15E3B43307.jpeg 9964290A-AB12-43D8-B774-0EAE71F6E7CD.jpeg 9EB19E9D-8A62-4E3E-92B5-B6BE80EC7B23.jpeg 48209AF1-0AFB-4E81-8D7B-D36D27250564.jpeg 2F0CFF35-4C9D-4E4D-9BB3-260977E33544.jpeg 07D08D81-88DD-4637-AA49-A8F2DB1EC94B.jpeg

So so cosy, beautiful and inviting! And the doggo :kiss2: :kiss2: :kiss2: :kiss2: :kiss2: :kiss2:

And the dog bed, so cute!

Your home is beautiful and always looks so perfectly decorated and neat, yet inviting and warm!








I just put up my very minimal lights. Warm white only, just one on each window, waterfall style.

And one tree in front of my door outside.


Totally unremarkable and not enough in the US, middle if the road in Germany (my home) , but wayyyyy over the top in France where I am living now:lol::lol::lol:

Neighbor giving me the side eye..

I don't care!
 

mrs-b

Ideal_Rock
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Aug 18, 2013
Messages
8,336
@MamaBee -

I love every single photo I've ever seen of your house/s. Just gorgeous! And your Christmas decorations are superlative! Thank you so much for sharing!

And MANY thanks to @kipari for starting this thread!

When we lived in Australia we had a set routine. We used to go to church on Christmas morning, then have a bunch of our friends back to our house for morning tea - normally between 16 and 20 people in total. Everyone got a gift and we had sfrappole and fruitcake and fresh cherries.

Then in the afternoon we used to congregate at my best girlfriend's house with a few other friends of ours and her kids - always the 8 of us - where we'd have BBQ'd turkey breasts, seafood platters, and salads, then exchange gifts. After a bit of a breather we'd have pineapple and coconut icecream cake for dessert. We did the same thing every year and it was awesome!

But now my routine is different. Every December I have Thanksgiving here in Boston (previously NY, where we lived originally when we moved to the US), then my husband and I put up the tree and decorate the house, then wrap the gifts over the rest of the weekend. (This was Thanksgiving from 2019. We decided to go more casual, put up our family room tree first, then ate watching old movies and toasting all the things for which we're grateful - which was a lot.)

Thanksgiving 2019.jpeg

Two weeks before Christmas I head out to LA, where I decorate my god-kids' and their Dad's house, and we wrap all their gifts, too. A few days before Christmas, we all get super dressed up and go to the Atheneum (the Caltech staff club - old, stone, gorgeous) for their massive Christmas buffet. Our group is my friend (David), his kids, me, his brother, Rob, (who, as it turned out, ended up marrying my best girlfriend after we introduced them), my best girlfriend (who comes to the US every year now for Christmas and has done for 20 years and is now married to Rob), my god son's girlfriend and my god daughter's best friend. In recent years we've also started inviting another friend of ours, Christel Joy, a friend we met via yoga, who comes down from WA every pre-Christmas to join in. So - 9 of us in total. After that, we go on a tour of the Christmas lights, and everyone stays the night at David's house, except for his brother and my best friend / his brother's now wife (look, seriously, it's not that complicated in real life...) The next day, Rob (brother) and Wendy (my best girlfriend / Rob's wife) come over early, and we have breakfast all together. We read the Christmas story, pray and thank God for the greatest gift of all, then have a bang up brekky! After that, we spend a good hour or two opening gifts, doing the appropriate fashion shows of new clothes, play with whatever gift is appropriate at the time, then, afterwards, Christel Joy runs a a restorative yoga class. The next day I go home. We've done it this way for years as my god kids' parents are divorced and they normally go to their mom for Christmas day. This suits everyone, as dinner at the Atheneum is the heart of our LA Christmas, and they're not open after the 23rd. So it all hangs together perfectly.

I'm always home by the 22nd/23rd, at which point I get the last few bits and pieces organized. Wendy and Rob will generally fly over on Christmas eve and in previous years we've gone to church in the evening - then come home and drink egg nog and eat fruit mince tarts in front of the fire. We have Christmas eve boxes, which we fill with small, inexpensive gifts, and we open those. On Christmas morning we have stockings and a few things under the tree, plus things sent to us from friends or family or anything that won't fit in the stockings. In the afternoon I do a roast - duck this year, in fact - and then we sort of collapse. Rob and Wen will stay till New Year's, at which point Rob returns to LA to go back to work. Wendy stays a little longer and on the first weekend after New Years we take everything down and pack it away till next year. A few days after that, she returns to LA to spend a few more days with Rob, then she flies home to Australia.

So basically, the whole shebang normally starts with Thanksgiving, and ends mid January. I love the Yuletide season. It's incredibly special and is the heart of my year.

This year, given the pandemic, we tried to mix things up a bit and my god kids came out for Thanksgiving, and we had a wonderful time and decorated the house together for Christmas. I'm still going out there, but only for a week, and just to decorate the house and organize all the gifts - no group get-together, no big dinner. I return to Boston on the 16th and will have Christmas dinner with Tim as normal, but no Christmas eve service and no guests, tho we *do* have lots of gifts and will eat our roast duck. ..:)).. We're shipping gifts to everyone and on Christmas afternoon we'll open our gifts on Zoom with the LA connection and we'll be joined by Wendy in Australia and Christel Joy in WA, plus my god son's girlfriend and my god daughter's best friend. So there's that, and it will be precious. <3

I posted this photo somewhere else, but I'll put it here as well: this is my living/dining room this year.

20201128_212515.jpg
 
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kipari

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 9, 2015
Messages
2,786
@MamaBee -

I love every single photo I've ever seen of your house/s. Just gorgeous! And your Christmas decorations are superlative! Thank you so much for sharing!

And MANY thanks to @kipari for starting this thread!

When we lived in Australia we had a set routine. We used to go to church on Christmas morning, then have a bunch of our friends back to our house for morning tea - normally between 16 and 20 people in total. Everyone got a gift and we had sfrappole and fruitcake and fresh cherries.

Then in the afternoon we used to congregate at my best girlfriend's house with a few other friends of ours and her kids - always the 8 of us - where we'd have BBQ'd turkey breasts, seafood platters, and salads, then exchange gifts. After a bit of a breather we'd have pineapple and coconut icecream cake for dessert. We did the same thing every year and it was awesome!

But now my routine is different. Every December I have Thanksgiving here in Boston (previously NY, where we lived originally when we moved to the US), then my husband and I put up the tree and decorate the house, then wrap the gifts over the rest of the weekend. Two weeks before Christmas I head out to LA, where I decorate my god-kids' and their Dad's house, and we wrap all their gifts, too. A few days before Christmas, we all get super dressed up and go to the Atheneum (the Caltech staff club - old, stone, gorgeous) for their massive Christmas buffet. Our group is my friend (David), his kids, me, his brother, Rob, (who, as it turned out, ended up marrying my best girlfriend after we introduced them), my best girlfriend (who comes to the US every year now for Christmas and has done for 20 years and is now married to Rob), my god son's girlfriend and my god daughter's best friend. In recent years we've also started inviting another friend of ours, Christel Joy, a friend we met via yoga, who comes down from WA every pre-Christmas to join in. So - 9 of us in total. After that, we go on a tour of the Christmas lights, and everyone stays the night at David's house, except for his brother and my best friend / his brother's now wife (look, seriously, it's not that complicated in real life...) The next day, Rob (brother) and Wendy (my best girlfriend / Rob's wife) come over early, and we have breakfast all together. We read the Christmas story, pray and thank God for the greatest gift of all, then have a bang up brekky! After that, we spend a good hour or two opening gifts, doing the appropriate fashion shows of new clothes, play with whatever gift is appropriate at the time, then, afterwards, Christel Joy runs a a restorative yoga class. The next day I go home. We've done it this way for years as my god kids' parents are divorced and they normally go to their mom for Christmas day. This suits everyone, as dinner at the Atheneum is the heart of our LA Christmas, and they're not open after the 23rd. So it all hangs together perfectly.

I'm always home by the 22nd/23rd, at which point I get the last few bits and pieces organized. Wendy and Rob will generally fly over on Christmas eve and in previous years we've gone to church in the evening - then come home and drink egg nog and eat fruit mince tarts in front of the fire. We have Christmas eve boxes, which we fill with small, inexpensive gifts, and we open those. On Christmas morning we have stockings and a few things under the tree, plus things sent to us from friends or family or anything that won't fit in the stockings. In the afternoon I do a roast - duck this year, in fact - and then we sort of collapse. Rob and Wen will stay till New Year's, at which point Rob returns to LA to go back to work. Wendy stays a little longer and on the first weekend after New Years we take everything down and pack it away till next year. A few days after that, she returns to LA to spend a few more days with Rob, then she flies home to Australia.

So basically, the whole shebang normally starts with Thanksgiving, and ends mid January. I love the Yuletide season. It's incredibly special and is the heart of my year.

This year, given the pandemic, we tried to mix things up a bit and my god kids came out for Thanksgiving, and we had a wonderful time and decorated the house together for Christmas. I'm still going out there, but only for a week, and just to decorate the house and organize all the gifts - no group get-together, no big dinner. I return to Boston on the 16th and will have Christmas dinner with Tim as normal, but no Christmas eve service and no guests, tho we *do* have lots of gifts and will eat our roast duck. ..:)).. We're shipping gifts to everyone and on Christmas afternoon we'll open our gifts on Zoom with the LA connection and we'll be joined by Wendy in Australia and Christel Joy in WA, plus my god son's girlfriend and my god daughter's best friend. So there's that, and it will be precious. <3

I posted this photo somewhere else, but I'll put it here as well: this is my living/dining room this year.

20201128_212515.jpg

Absolutely gorgeous, @mrs-b ! Your traditions with your friends sound so wonderful. I'm glad you could still keep up some of it in spite of the pandemic!

I am also a very very very big fan of the Yuletide (or "Vorweihnachtszeit").

There are so many wonderful traditions. Especially for the children it's a truly magical time.

Our season starts on St. Martin's day on November 11.th. We have a recital of the St. Martin story, songs, a fire and special sweet brioche men. We usually have a parade at the kid's school with lanterns and a St. Martin on a real horse in front.

I love that the season starts with the reminder that it's a about giving and sharing!!! ❤


Then the cookie fabrication starts. And the decorations gradually comwnul. On Dec 1 at our advent calendar comes up and O the first advent Sunday our crown. Then there's my birthday and generally lots of cookie and tea / killed wine afternoons in non pandemic times. I usually take my girls to the nutcracker ballet and a Christmas play in the theater (not this year!).

We do German Christmas, so gifts on Christmas Eve after church.


Our Christmas season ends on Epiphany with a huge bash around a special French almond filled cake.. (Also cancelled) . That's when all the decorations come down, although it's technically OK to wait until Candlemas.
 

MamaBee

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 31, 2018
Messages
9,088
Love your decorations! I love Christmas time!

Thank you @kayla17 We decorate this house for children...husband included....:lol: I was really looking forward to having Christmas here with my son, daughter-in-law, three year and six month old grandsons. I’m just thankful everyone is healthy...We can have it next year...I know it will happen..
 

MamaBee

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 31, 2018
Messages
9,088
@MamaBee -

I love every single photo I've ever seen of your house/s. Just gorgeous! And your Christmas decorations are superlative! Thank you so much for sharing!

And MANY thanks to @kipari for starting this thread!

When we lived in Australia we had a set routine. We used to go to church on Christmas morning, then have a bunch of our friends back to our house for morning tea - normally between 16 and 20 people in total. Everyone got a gift and we had sfrappole and fruitcake and fresh cherries.

Then in the afternoon we used to congregate at my best girlfriend's house with a few other friends of ours and her kids - always the 8 of us - where we'd have BBQ'd turkey breasts, seafood platters, and salads, then exchange gifts. After a bit of a breather we'd have pineapple and coconut icecream cake for dessert. We did the same thing every year and it was awesome!

But now my routine is different. Every December I have Thanksgiving here in Boston (previously NY, where we lived originally when we moved to the US), then my husband and I put up the tree and decorate the house, then wrap the gifts over the rest of the weekend. (This was Thanksgiving from 2019. We decided to go more casual, put up our family room tree first, then ate watching old movies and toasting all the things for which we're grateful - which was a lot.)

Thanksgiving 2019.jpeg

Two weeks before Christmas I head out to LA, where I decorate my god-kids' and their Dad's house, and we wrap all their gifts, too. A few days before Christmas, we all get super dressed up and go to the Atheneum (the Caltech staff club - old, stone, gorgeous) for their massive Christmas buffet. Our group is my friend (David), his kids, me, his brother, Rob, (who, as it turned out, ended up marrying my best girlfriend after we introduced them), my best girlfriend (who comes to the US every year now for Christmas and has done for 20 years and is now married to Rob), my god son's girlfriend and my god daughter's best friend. In recent years we've also started inviting another friend of ours, Christel Joy, a friend we met via yoga, who comes down from WA every pre-Christmas to join in. So - 9 of us in total. After that, we go on a tour of the Christmas lights, and everyone stays the night at David's house, except for his brother and my best friend / his brother's now wife (look, seriously, it's not that complicated in real life...) The next day, Rob (brother) and Wendy (my best girlfriend / Rob's wife) come over early, and we have breakfast all together. We read the Christmas story, pray and thank God for the greatest gift of all, then have a bang up brekky! After that, we spend a good hour or two opening gifts, doing the appropriate fashion shows of new clothes, play with whatever gift is appropriate at the time, then, afterwards, Christel Joy runs a a restorative yoga class. The next day I go home. We've done it this way for years as my god kids' parents are divorced and they normally go to their mom for Christmas day. This suits everyone, as dinner at the Atheneum is the heart of our LA Christmas, and they're not open after the 23rd. So it all hangs together perfectly.

I'm always home by the 22nd/23rd, at which point I get the last few bits and pieces organized. Wendy and Rob will generally fly over on Christmas eve and in previous years we've gone to church in the evening - then come home and drink egg nog and eat fruit mince tarts in front of the fire. We have Christmas eve boxes, which we fill with small, inexpensive gifts, and we open those. On Christmas morning we have stockings and a few things under the tree, plus things sent to us from friends or family or anything that won't fit in the stockings. In the afternoon I do a roast - duck this year, in fact - and then we sort of collapse. Rob and Wen will stay till New Year's, at which point Rob returns to LA to go back to work. Wendy stays a little longer and on the first weekend after New Years we take everything down and pack it away till next year. A few days after that, she returns to LA to spend a few more days with Rob, then she flies home to Australia.

So basically, the whole shebang normally starts with Thanksgiving, and ends mid January. I love the Yuletide season. It's incredibly special and is the heart of my year.

This year, given the pandemic, we tried to mix things up a bit and my god kids came out for Thanksgiving, and we had a wonderful time and decorated the house together for Christmas. I'm still going out there, but only for a week, and just to decorate the house and organize all the gifts - no group get-together, no big dinner. I return to Boston on the 16th and will have Christmas dinner with Tim as normal, but no Christmas eve service and no guests, tho we *do* have lots of gifts and will eat our roast duck. ..:)).. We're shipping gifts to everyone and on Christmas afternoon we'll open our gifts on Zoom with the LA connection and we'll be joined by Wendy in Australia and Christel Joy in WA, plus my god son's girlfriend and my god daughter's best friend. So there's that, and it will be precious. <3

I posted this photo somewhere else, but I'll put it here as well: this is my living/dining room this year.

20201128_212515.jpg

@mrs-b LOVE your trees and decorations...I love love love the silver and tinsel tree...I have a bitty tinsel tree in Pa.. They’re my favorite..Your festivities sound wonderful just how Christmas should be celebrated.
Thank you for your sweet comments about mine this year.
 

mrs-b

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 18, 2013
Messages
8,336
Here's a few more snaps.

Our mantelpiece:

20201202_224331.jpg

Close up of our stockings:

20201202_224437.jpg

20201202_224448.jpg

A few friendly helper gnomes, who turn up every December. What they actually *do*, we're not sure, but they seem friendly....

20201202_224513.jpg

Our dining table where Christmas dinner normally happens...tho not this year....

20201202_224536.jpg

And my main tree in the living room. @MamaBee - most of my trees are champagne in color, with warm white lights. They're gold and silver tinsel, woven together. Makes the gold more calm and less garish, and warms up the plain silver. It's a lovely, soft, combination of colors.

20201202_224355.jpg
 

MamaBee

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 31, 2018
Messages
9,088
Here's a few more snaps.

Our mantelpiece:

20201202_224331.jpg

Close up of our stockings:

20201202_224437.jpg
Oooooh @mrs-b! I love the mix of champagne

20201202_224448.jpg

A few friendly helper gnomes, who turn up every December. What they actually *do*, we're not sure, but they seem friendly....

20201202_224513.jpg

Our dining table where Christmas dinner normally happens...tho not this year....

20201202_224536.jpg

And my main tree in the living room. @MamaBee - most of my trees are champagne in color, with warm white lights. They're gold and silver tinsel, woven together. Makes the gold more calm and less garish, and warms up the plain silver. It's a lovely, soft, combination of colors.

20201202_224355.jpg

Oooh @mrs-b! I love the combination of champagne with the silver tinsel! I love the wrapped presents on the table..so pretty!Love the gnomes...I also collect them...See the top of the Maryland tree..l’ll take a snap of my others..Your mantel is gorgeous. I think the boxes are so sweet.
My tree in Pa is silver, champagne, gold, and crystal...on a green tree. I’m very picky about how to decorate it. My husband will be doing it this year because I’m in Maryland. I did all the other decorations before I left. I’ll see if I have any of those photos. He has an engineer brain...so different from mine..I like the mix of small, medium and large ornaments throughout the tree in balance. He will probably put all the smaller ornaments on top and work down to large. I had a talk with myself that I will tell him he did a wonderful job. Haha...I’ll post a pic of the tree I did last year. When I get home to Pa I’ll post one of the one he does this Saturday. Maybe I rubbed off on him and he will do it like I usually do...The suspense! Haha
Here’s a pic of the tree from last year. It’s not the best photo..
F5D66A7E-6E36-44C4-B6A3-A4668EE92688.jpeg
 
Last edited:

mrs-b

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 18, 2013
Messages
8,336
Oooh @mrs-b! I love the combination of champagne with the silver tinsel! I love the wrapped presents on the table..so pretty!Love the gnomes...I also collect them...See the top of the Maryland tree..l’ll take a snap of my others..Your mantel is gorgeous. I think the boxes are so sweet.
My tree in Pa is silver, champagne, gold, and crystal...on a green tree. I’m very picky about how to decorate it. My husband will be doing it this year because I’m in Maryland. I did all the other decorations before I left. I’ll see if I have any of those photos. He has an engineer brain...so different from mine..I like the mix of small, medium and large ornaments throughout the tree in balance. He will probably put all the smaller ornaments on top and work down to large. I had a talk with myself that I will tell him he did a wonderful job. Haha...I’ll post a pic of the tree I did last year. When I get home to Pa I’ll post one of the one he does this Saturday. Maybe I rubbed off on him and he will do it like I usually do...The suspense! Haha

This whole post is so me! When my husband does this sort of thing unsupervised, it's always a nail-biting experience! And I am totally familiar with practicing the "Wow - that's great, honey!" talk ahead of time! Altho, he works so hard and tries so hard and I love him so much - it's not difficult to bring out the words sincerely when the time comes. He was out in the cold last night, reorganizing the colored lights on our outdoor tree and I just fell in love with him all over again. I know full well that he does this stuff for me - what a lovely, lovely person he is!

I have to say, I think your decorations are just sublime. I'm SO into Christmas, and I do the best I can every year because I just get so much out of it. I think, in you, I've found a kindred spirit!! .. :wavey:
 
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