A Bit of Holiday Decorating

comments: 48


We've been putting up Christmas decorations a little bit all week long — a little here, a little there. I feel a deep need for simplicity right now, since there has been so much commotion around the house these past few months. I decided to forego my Christmas village, and pretty much keep the mantle the way it's been for the past few weeks. Amanda mentioned putting flameless tea lights in mason jars on the windowsills; I love the way candles look in jars, too, so I thought just a few for the mantle (though mine have the real tea lights in them), along with the snowflakes we usually hang, and the cranberry stand, and a little pennant garland I made yesterday using Stephanie's tutorial.


It's all made me quite happy to look at. Funny how Christmas does that to ya.

It's been so nice to be home in the quiet this week, puttering and dinking around. Going slow (it's already 5:43 p.m. and I am just getting to post). Cleaning. Knitting. Sitting around with animals on my lap. I am planning some holiday baking. There will definitely be cinnamon rolls. There will definitely be gingerbread. I am not great at baking cookies, but I might try. I am definitely planning on taking more photos around the house, but it's been so dark lately. I keep waiting for more light, but that seems downright silly.

(A couple of people asked where I got the ticking stripe fabric for the dog beds [there is a cat sitting on one of them right now, actually, so I guess it's a "pet" bed] yesterday — that ticking was in my stash from forever ago, but it probably came from Fabric Depot or Mill End Store. [And for those who asked about the braided rug, I didn't make that; it's from L.L. Bean about five years ago or so.] )


My heart sank when I saw your words "forego my Christmas Village..." because I have a special thing for glitter houses, but I love your mantel - it's cozy and cheery and Scandanavy and Christmassy!

Love it :) and your tiny mason jars! Silly me uses the big ones and then my hand gets stuck - it's a mess. The hanging snowflakes are so special.
Thank you for the link - I'm honored.

Mmmm, cinnamon rolls! Sounds like a cozy time. I love the mantel.

I love your mantle! I am envious, we don't have a mantle so our stockings are hung on the curtain rods! I was wondering where your advent candle holder came from?

Love the stockings. Are they made from old sweaters?

Lovely. Simply lovely.
I have been loving all the places you can put those tealights... without putting them out or starting a fire!
I have some milk glass behind glass cabinets, and we put lights in those... they flicker and glow and give seasonal cheer.

I love how you're "not good at making cookies" but can do cinnamon rolls and gingerbread. Talent. Fancy. You have the PRETTIEST decorations!!!

Susie Sears Taylor says: December 09, 2010 at 06:48 PM

As you get older you will find more enjoyment in the simpler things...less is more...more enjoyable, more tolerable, more romantic, more fun, more peaceful, more agreeable, more pleasant, more restful, more precious etc. etc.

Alicia, I was in Joann's Fabric yesterday picking up yet another notion for yet another Christmas project and they had the ticking fabric. Thought of you.

I believe that simplicity at the holidays is so important because, I think, IT ALL ADDS UP QUICKLY. You know? Decorating, baking, gifting, gatherings, et cetera. I go with the idea that doing each thing simply makes it so much easier to savor every sweet bit of it. (Not that I don't keep adding more and more and more;It's nice to have the time to toss a little more on the pile since I'm not already overwhelmed and behind on some preconceived ideal.)

I'm thinking of doing the pennant garland in January, when I'm all sad and putting away the holiday decor. By the way, I (we) have been decorating slowly too, over the course of about ten days. My husband has been out of town since Monday and I'm anxious for his return... so that he can help me drape lights from the porch ceiling. Oh, and of course, I miss him!

And, sorry to write a novel here, but I must ask how you hang your snowflakes/ornaments from the ceiling. I have been pondering how to hang a gathering of flakes or stars. I considered the 3M hooks, but wonder if there's a better method, such as wall putty.

Now, I shall quietly duck out of here and I bid you a festive adieu.

I love your Christmas village, but I understand the need to take it easy. I think your mantle looks lovely. It's simple but still festive. Your Christmas village post from about a year ago was one of the most memorable for me. Your blog is the reason I started reading blogs. I've lurked for so long and just in the last several months had the courage to leave comments. Sounds silly now that I type that. It's funny how mentioning the Christmas village triggered the memory of how my blog obsession began. I can’t believe it’s been a year that I’ve been hanging around. Enjoy your baking. It will make the house smell wonderful.

Oh your mantle is so very wonderful, I just had to dramatically sigh to my husband over the beauty of it all. I love every bit of it.

I find it hard to believe that you are not good at baking cookies, I bet with a little practice you would be super good at it.

I am going to now admire your mantle for a few moments more...
Happy quiet cozy winter days to you!

Change is good. I use to put a tree in every room. I had seven of them. I still decorate but less. I enjoy it more. I've given away and intend to give away even more of the ornaments that I don't need.

Next year you might change again. I think that it makes life interesting.

Loved the old mantle with the cute little houses and love the new one, it's fresh and so beautiful.

I love the mantle. The decorations look wonderful. Whilst I do love the Christmas village, what you've done is beautiful. Yes, change is good! Happy holidays!

So lovely, so cozy. I'm with you, simple is better this year...I am going for that! =-)

Inviting and relaxing. Just the way the holidays ought to feel.

Super cute! I never thought I would like flameless candles until I tried them. I found some in jars that look so real and flicker and are on timers that just go off every night at the same time like little twinkling (and safe!) nightlights. They were also awesome when the power went out from a storm.

So so pretty, just simply gorgeous!

Alicia, I am a children minder in France. This year in the area where I "keep" 3 little children I did your "winter village" (so, I try to do it more exactly). You can see it in my blog. Next year, I will built new little house with fabrics, next year, it will be better ;-)
Thank to share with us your nice ideas !!

Funny indeed! I love Christmas, and I love your home, and your decorations. It sounds quite glorious just sitting for a while with a pet in your lap <3

Oh no, NOT the Christmas village!!!! That was the most peaceful looking scene. LOL enjoy your decorations.

Your mantel looks beautiful. I especially love the snowflakes.

Awww, I love your Christmas village, it inspired me to make my own last year. Best not to take on too much at this time of year though, I do understand that. I do my decorating in fits and starts, most of it is done now but a few bits remain, I confess! I'll eventually get round to it by the 25th!

If you want to try cookies, this is an old family recipe, and everyone who's tried them loves them! http://blog.fuzzymitten.com/2007/12/ginger-cookies.html
They're pretty easy as cookies go. Even if you over-bake them a bit, they just end up crunchy instead of chewy.

So nice to hear you can relax a bit after all that mayhem. I could use a bit of that too :)

This is a bit random, but I saw the quote in this post from Cornflower and it really reminded me of you, or, at least, your blog:


Perhaps it is a book you would like to read?

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About Alicia Paulson


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