It’s become a tradition for Nick and I to put up our Christmas decorations the day after Thanksgiving, and this year was no different. I just love the glow of the lights on the tree and the extra cheer that holiday decorations bring to our home – so the sooner we put up our decorations the longer we can enjoy them.
I mentioned last year, that we always decorate two trees – a real tree in the front window of our main level, and a fake Charlie Brown tree downstairs in our den, where we relax and watch TV.
After trimming our trees, we also put out the rest of our holiday decorations, including the nativity set that always gets displayed on our mantel; our other decorations get changed up from year to year.
I like simple holiday decorations and often decorate with natural elements, so I spread some extra cheer around the house by putting out a few glass containers filled with red bulbs and scented pine cones.
Since we frequently use our fireplace, our stockings get hung downstairs – I also set out a holiday poinsettia and some large pine cones that I spray painted silver.
The lighted garland was a recent purchase and I absolutely love it – it’s pre-lit and decorated with pine cones and red bulbs and was so much easier (and cleaner!) to hang than the real garland we’ve hung the past few years.
While I enjoy decorating our home for Christmas, I dislike the time it takes to put everything away in January; so my strategy is to simply add holiday touches to decorations that I already have displayed. I added a green ribbon and some red ornaments to the lantern below and covered a book in holiday wrapping – and just like that it looks like Christmas!
We also decorated the outside of our home, we attached a simple wreath to the front door and hung our icicle lights to brighten up the exterior of our house.
Nick and I also spent some time creating a new display for our holiday cards. Last year I made a yardstick Christmas tree to display our cards, but I had an idea for something new this year. A small ledge runs along the stairwell between our main and lower levels, which I think is the perfect place to display the cards we receive. So we purchased a 6-foot length of 1 1/2 x 3/4-inch poplar from the hardware store for a couple of dollars.
Our first step was to distress the wood. Nick heavily sanded some of the edges and then we randomly banged on the wood with the edge of a hammer and pounded some nail heads and screw marks onto the top of it.
After it no longer looked like a brand new piece of wood, we added a couple of coats of stain (which we had on hand from another project) to match it to our hardwood floors.
Our next step was to add a cut down the middle of the entire length of the board to insert the cards; our cut was about 1/2-inch deep (a circular saw would work great for this, but we just used our Dremel Saw-Max). Since holding the board and cutting the wood was a two-man job, there are no pictures of this step – but below is a close-up photo of the finished result.
Here’s a photo from further back – the board blends in well with the color of the wood steps and it looks like it could have always been there.
And here’s what the display looks like filled with our holiday cards (note, we’d only received a couple of Christmas cards when we worked on this project, so I pulled out some of the cards we received last year).
I’m so happy with how the card display turned out, this was a super easy project and it’s working really well for us…and it’s especially nice to see the faces of our family and friends every time we walk up and down the stairs.
Anyone else have a great idea for displaying holiday cards? I can’t believe that Christmas is only a few days away!