By How She Does It
Let’s face it: Everyone loves looking at Christmas decorations, but not everyone is terribly motivated to spend a full weekend hauling dusty boxes from the attic, putting up garland, trimming trees, and then inevitably vacuuming up pine needles. Decorating for the holidays takes time and effort and for the busiest among us, it might not seem worth it.
But, believe it or not, holiday decorating does not have to be burdensome. And it certainly does not need to add to your stress this season. In fact, taking time to deck your halls can enhance your enjoyment of the holidays in a variety of ways, whether encouraging you to slow down and spend more time at home, evoking special holiday memories spent with family, or simply giving you something beautiful to behold when you step into your home after a long work day. In this post, a few women are sharing the ways that holiday decorating has made their days extra merry and bright this holiday season. We hope you enjoy!
One of the primary reasons I love to decorate for Christmas is that a festive home reminds me to slow down and savor the season. For that reason, I choose decorations that are both beautiful and meaningful. Growing up, the nativity scene was always an important Christmas decoration, reminding us of the true meaning of the season. My grandparents had an intricate hand-carved nativity scene, which I loved unboxing each year to display on their mantel. Although my grandparents are no longer living, unboxing my own nativity scene each year continues this tradition.
Decorating the Christmas tree is another family tradition. Since getting married, my husband and I have purchased ornaments as souvenirs when we travel. When we decorate the tree, it is fun to remember those trips and relive the memories we have made in the past. I’m also reminded of my childhood, when my parents would take my sister and me to a tree farm, complete with a hayride and hot chocolate, to pick out and cut down our own tree. For me, the Christmas tree encourages stillness. There is something magical about the lights on the tree in the evening that just causes me to stop and be still for a moment. Although Christmas is often a busy season, I find that a festive home encourages me to slow down and enjoy my family more, rather than hustle around to get everything done.
Taking time to decorate for Christmas makes my home feel like a sanctuary. My decorations are simple, but they are all deeply meaningful in that they were handed down from my parents, grandparents, or even my great-grandparents. These items fill my heart with joy every time I see them. In order to make decorating fun and hassle-free, I stick to a few ground rules.
- I decorate with a lot of live items – poinsettias, live wreaths and garlands, and magnolia branches. That way, I do not need to find a place to store them at the end of the season (a pro-tip from my mom!). Plus, they make my house smell amazing!
- I do not use all of my decorations every year, but choose a few special pieces to display. Less is more!
- I utilize items that I simply love, instead of feeling pressure to stick to “trends” or to create a Pinterest-perfect home. At the end of the day, whether my home fills me with joy is more important than fretting over whether my decorations are fit for the Joanna Gaineses of the world.
- I always, always make decorating a family event. We have coffee or hot chocolate, listen to music, and eat dinner together. This is the highlight of my holiday season every year.
My favorite reason for holiday decorating is that doing so is just plain fun! During a season that can be particularly busy, it is nice to step away from the hustle and bustle and spend an afternoon at home making your dwelling festive. Do it in whatever way is fun for you: crank up the new Hanson Christmas album (yes, it’s a thing), pour a glass of wine or cup of hot chocolate, enlist family members or friends to come do it with you, or do it all alone in a quiet house – whatever makes you feel happy and refreshed!
And, if the idea of decorating doesn’t sound fun to you, then simply don’t do it! There are no decorations police who will come banging on your door screaming for your arrest if you don’t decorate this year. Sometimes, just realizing that something is an optional activity that we can choose whether to do puts the fun right back into it. What once seemed like another item on the to-do list becomes an enjoyable activity that you have consciously chosen as fun time in your busy schedule.
In that vein, be sure to choose a time to decorate when it actually can be fun. The world will not end if your Christmas tree is purchased two days before Christmas rather than the weekend after Thanksgiving. Likewise, if you’re just full of the Christmas spirit year round and want to decorate on November 1st, then don’t let the holiday nazis like me tell you that you have to wait until after Thanksgiving (I promise I’ll try real hard not to judge). Pick a time that works for your schedule, then have FUN!
Are you decorating your home for the holidays? Do you have a favorite family heirloom that you pull out every year? Check in with us on Instagram and share your favorites!
#howshedoesitathome #perfectlyimperfecthome #holidaydecorating
Featured image courtesy of Wonderfelle Media. Follow them on Insta at @wonderfelle!