December Now

comments: 47

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I haven't quite reached a peaceful holiday state of mind. I like the week between Thanksgiving and December better than December, in a way. As soon as December starts, I feel — in spite of my best efforts — like I'm being a little bit . . . chased. Chased by a calendar. I'm a cartoon character with legs spinning. I finally sit down to have some tea and a cookie. "Oh shit! I have to order the Christmas cards before they're not 40% off anymore!" Get back up. Go get stupid computer. Ugh. So many things like that. You know. Even though you try not to have too many things to do there are still a lot of things to do. . . . I resist feeling that anything is actually urgent but things feel urgent. . . .

Amelia decorated her little tree. It is so adorable. It looks like somebody stood across the room and threw lights and ornaments at it but in fact she was quite deliberate. Around the house she sings and hums a constant medley of carols, making up half the words. It's amazing how kids just . . . pick it all up, somehow. Every year there's a little more intensity to her experience. It's completely fascinating to watch her put things together in her mind. "Oh!" she exclaims, looking at her tree. "I need to go say my mushroom prayers!" A million things said like that a day, things I couldn't make up if I tried. It's like interpreting a Mad Lib. She is so engaged with everything she does, and it's done in her very own way. Five years old. Enchanting. Darling wonder. Sweetest, sweetest heart.

47 comments

I chucked the advent/christmas calendar. NO MORE COUNTDOWNS in this house. It has helped tremendously in my feeling all rushy and has seriously mellowed me out and we enjoy the season so much better now.

I actually ordered our cards early (for me) this year but they arrived nearly 2 weeks ago and not a single one written, oops. December is always a month where i feel 10 days behind where i should be. This happens when both kids have birthdays in Christmas week. You are right 5 is a wonderful age, mushroom prayers!!!

Annie Vennerbeck says: December 06, 2017 at 04:18 PM

oh oh oh ...her closet! and wooo wooo woooden hangers. An abundance of careful and beautiful effort - just hanging there ! - a feast.

I remember the papering of the door ? - still perfect - especially with the Christmas sock. Thanks for all this !

Mushroom prayers?! I don't know what they are but she sounds ADORABLE!

Dearest Alicia-
I have been following your blog since Amelia was just a few months old. I haven't really been online much lately, as you say I've been feeling overwhelmed and "chased" is just a perfect way to say it. Thought of your lovely blog and came here tonight to find a little peace, something about the pictures of your home and family make me feel so happy, and peaceful. This might sound funny, but I had such an unhappy childhood, filled with abuse and sadness. It makes me so happy to see how much you love your little one, the clothes you make for her, the ribbons in her hair, the toys you make for her. The effort that you take to bring love into every aspect of her life. I can't really explain it, but it makes me happy. I'm tearing up as I write this, I think you are such an amazing mother. Thank you for sharing your life with us.

I finally ordered my Chistmas cards earlier this week and I waited so long they were 70% off! Procrastination at its best.

Everytime I look at your wonderful pictures, I feel the wish to live in a similar and such quiet piece of the Earth. I look at your pictures wondering what I would do in such a place like that. Desiring to live in the country or somewhere similar... to have a simple, quietly life... Then, you write a post telling us about your December battles and I smiled. A sweet smile... never tought that would be possible in a place like that... maybe I'm dreaming... let me... is christmas season... XOXO

Such lovely photos! And Amelia at 5... so sweet. I'm looking forward to making some dolls for my little ones. Last night I made time to sit down by the tree, knit, sip a holiday drink, and enjoy the fireplace. Best night of the year. Part of the joy of hygge is the contrast with the rush and bustle, and Jack Frost on the windowpane while it's so cozy indoors.

Also, that pink cowl is lovely! What's the pattern, please?

EXACTLY!!! I feel like I'm being 'chased' the whole month of December---swirling in pools of panic---love your word craft! Happy swirling, chasing Holidays.

Oh Alicia, I feel the rush too!But YOU my dear, inspire me to be deliberate. Everything seems so still and cozy, well-thought-out and calm. Everything full of love and creature comforts in your little corner of the world. It makes me slow down and remember to enjoy the fun, good food, and family that's right here in my little corner of the world. Although, it's honestly comforting to know you're hustling like the rest of us :)

Such lovely photographs - the misty outdoor ones at the tree farm - wonderful! The tree on the old wagon...the mossy trunk tree lined road...but my favorite may be 'live gently upon this earth'. Nicely framed with rake & ladder and I'm a little partial to blue speckled granite wear, but that one could be a postcard too! Amelia hauling her own little tree is adorable. I've always been an artificial tree fan but these pics could change my mind !!

I just borrowed a book today and I'm reading it aloud to my daughter and the whole time I was thinking of you and Amelia! It's called "Elsie Piddock Skips in Her Sleep" and it's about a little girl who jumps rope with fairies while she's sleeping. I haven't finished the book yet, but the combinations of the sweet illustrations and cute story made me think you'd like it. https://www.amazon.com/Elsie-Piddock-Skips-Her-Sleep/dp/1406373257/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr= Might be a cute gift idea.

We've yet to get our tree - having a REAL one for the first time in several years, hooray! I love the smell of real Xmas trees, especially when I come out in our lounge first thing in the morning...yum.

Am also chasing the calendar - why is it that everyone seems to want things done by Xmas???

Tracy Bowling says: December 08, 2017 at 06:57 AM

Your blog is where I go when I need a mental hug. Your photos soothe my soul. The lighting in your home is exactly how I keep my lighting when I'm able. I would never guess you felt so rushed and hurried along. Thank you for sharing your life through your blog. I think we all feel that little tug at our minds during the Holidays unfortunately. At 47, I'm still working on ways to enjoy it more and let go of the little things. I'll let you know when I have it all figured out. lol. God bless you hope you have a very wonderful Holiday season.

Mary Ventresco says: December 08, 2017 at 07:46 AM

Your photos are a blessing. So beautiful. I look at them at work to cheer myself up sometimes! To me your Christmas preparations look perfect.

Denise Sweeney says: December 08, 2017 at 09:23 AM

One year my grandson decorated our main tree in the manner Amelia decorated hers-garland clumped to one side, etc.,. He lived close by at the time and often came over to share holiday experiences. Now our grandchildren are teenagers, but we have the sweetest memories!

Wanted to pop in and tell you that I have been making the Artisan bread 4-5 times a week. We love it! Am experimenting with different flours too! Thanks for the recipe! No store bought bread in this house for a couple weeks now.

Love the pictures! I am just so excited for these dolls! I have a rag doll my sister made for me when I was about 6 and she was 10 that I just adore. I plan on making her one of these beauties, please let there be pantaloons!! As far as preparing for the holidays I have greatly changed my philosophy. My oldest daughter, at the age of 14, became gravely ill about 12 years ago. Through the course of her illness we have spent many a holiday either with her as a patient in the hospital or away from home as it is necessary for us to travel 300 miles one way for her to receive treatment. The holiday season is truly about family, tradition and love. The millions of little details we let ourselves become enslaved to are just that, little details, that in the end no one remembers. I have adopted a triage-type-mentality over the years and focus on the most important items and just let the rest go! In the end it is always better this way. I just love that you are documenting your time with your family and thank you so much for sharing your creative talents! I so look forward to your posts.

What beautiful pictures! You had me at the first close-up of evergreens.

Quiet photos. Lovely photos. Peaceful photos.

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About Alicia Paulson

About

My name is Alicia Paulson
and I love to make things. I live with my husband and daughter in Portland, Oregon, and design sewing, embroidery, knitting, and crochet patterns. See more about me at aliciapaulson.com

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Photography

Since August of 2011 I've been using a Canon EOS 60D with an EF 18-200mm kit lens and an EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro lens.