We all have Christmas traditions whether we still do them, they've changed a bit over the years, or they are just memories of the past. From the age of four (4) years old, my husband remembers eating at IHOP on Christmas morning because they were up early and on the road to Vail, CO to spend the next week. They'd leave on Christmas Day to get a discount (apparently that was a thing in the 90s-2000s). My friend Alex told me recently that her mother's Christmas tradition was to buy an ornament each year starting when Alex was born and her mother gave them to her when she got her own tree in her own home. Another friend cherished going back home to her great-grandmother's old home in the country each Christmas and seeing all of her cousins.
My Family Traditions
My family's traditions have fortunately gotten to stay relatively the same since I was a child, even though two (out of us three siblings) of us are married. My sister married into a family that celebrates Christmas on Christmas Eve, unwrapping all of their presents and everything. So, my sister ducks out of our Christmas festivities early on Christmas Eve and comes back late in the night to drink with the rest of us. I on the other hand, live in the same city as my in-laws and, absent COVID we see them pretty regularly and I see my family maybe 2-3 times a year other than Christmas.
So, I made the executive decision that we would do Christmas with my husband's family in Abilene on Christmas Eve morning and then we drive the three hours east to my family's home in DFW to do the rest of Christmas with them. Each year, we get in the hot tub, drink wine and hot cocoa, and graze on all of the food the women in my family had spent the last few days cooking. We normally also go to Christmas Eve church services, but COVID prohibits that this year. When we were little we read Twas the Night Before Christmas as well as the story of Jesus' Birth in the Bible. We wake up on Christmas morning, open stockings, do a huge Christmas breakfast, and THEN we open presents. My family is big on just vegging out and spending time together and most of my family stays until the 27th and extends Christmas for just one more day. I LOVE this tradition.
Christmas is such a magical time of the year. Every year, with the exception of this one it seems, the law firm workload gets lighter and lighter in late November and even slower in December (we practice family law and families spend money on their family this time of year). This is typically great as this affords us more time to spend with family of our own for the holiday season. However, with COVID we've been busy even during our slow season and even with Martin and I (and our family's) quarantining and getting tested prior to meeting up with everyone for Christmas - we can't stay or be around our loved ones the same as we want to.
If you've been following my Stories lately at all, you know I've been trying to spark small joys for myself because I've been in a bummer-mood lately. One of the things that always puts me in a better mood is holiday decorating - especially the tree! I've linked all of the sources and some similar, if sold out. And remember to save this post and come back to shop all of the After-Christmas Sales to get all of your holiday décor for next year! And to be transparent, this post contains affiliate links, from which I may be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links. However, I promise that all opinions are my own -- after all, I couldn't have holiday décor in my home that I hate! :D
First Thing's First: The Details
Maybe I'm the only weirdo / ADHD gal out here but I LOVE getting lost in something pretty and look at EVERYTHING. Seriously, the first time Martin ever took me to the Zoo, he regretted it because four hours later, we were still there. I have to see EVERY SINGLE animal after all! haha
Whether its outfit or home décor, for me its always in the details.
Click on the image for a close-up
The Red/Pink/Gold Tree
Honestly, this Tree and I did not get along for the first week of it being up. I planned on shooting my Christmas Tree Tutorial using this tree after Readers saw my Closet Tree and wanted a how-to video to watch. No joke, I filmed the tutorial three times and had to take it apart each time to re-shoot.
I'm new to this whole thing, especially video editing and filming myself. I kept messing up halfway or, even worse, thirty minutes into a really in-depth video.
It really felt like it was taunting me at one point.
But, because it finally all came together so beautifully after so much of a struggle I'm pretty proud of it. I've linked as many same/similar décor elements as mine as possible below for y'alls convenience.
SHOP THIS TREE:
This little rocking horse was Martin's when he was a toddler. It was handmade by a dear family friend. We inherited it when his grandmother passed and I couldn't bear to see it thrown out!
This nutcracker gift wrap and matching gift tags are from Simply Jessica Marie. I cannot tell you how many compliments I've gotten this year on my presents and Jessica deserves all the credit! Her designs have that precious vintage vibe, but with a modern flare. Highly recommend her products + services.
For your convenience, all ribbon and ornaments are linked below and at the very bottom of this post. :)
The Mantle + Entry + Bar
I hate so much not having a pretty kitchen (we live in an apartment right now) but at least I have a mantle-ish to decorate for the season.