Friday, January 13, 2017

First Christmas in the Louisiana Farmhouse

Well I know it's late for a Christmas post, but better late than never right?

Ok... so I had all of these amazing plans for Christmas in our new house.  (You remember the post, right?)  Actually I had been dreaming of Christmas in the new house for years.  But the reality was, we had just moved in the day before Thanksgiving so between unpacking, a busy busy work schedule, and an even busier kiddo itinerary there wasn't a bit of time left to decorate elaborately for the holiday.  And realistically, we didn't have living room furniture, a dining table, a washer and dryer, or even a refrigerator until just a little over a week before Christmas.  So I felt happy just to have those things, let along décor.

To make decorating for Christmas even more of a challenge, (Y'ALL!!) come December most stores were already wiped clean of holiday decorations.  Seriously!! I would walk up and down the same isle ten times, looking behind displays and boxes for some type of decoration that went with the vision I had.

Well despite the Christmas décor despair, I did manage to find a few odd and ends and pulled together a pretty backdrop for my family's Christmas festivities.  The Christmas tree was not overly decorated, but just as pretty as any tree we have ever had.  I couldn't find a tree skirt that went just right with the look I wanted.  Funds were a little tight (just built a house, ya know), my burlap stash was lost in the flood, and like I said- shelves were pretty bare in the Christmas section.  As I was leaving Home Depot with our tree, I walked past the Christmas section and picked up a $3 buffalo plaid fleece blanket. It was perfect!

I found 2 spools of flannel ribbon at HomeGoods- perfect for the tree.  And a sweet friend, found two more spools at TJ Maxx.  I grabbed a few small boxwood wreaths from Joann's and used the ribbon and wreaths to bring a little Christmas into the kitchen.  Other than that I used pops of red with dish towels and a utensil crock to bring in a little more cheer.  I'll probably keep them out through Valentine's Day. 

A funny story about the Christmas tree:  We usually cut down our tree at the local farm the weekend after Thanksgiving.  Well Lane was working, and we couldn't find time to get to the farm. And just like the Christmas decorations, most Home Depots, Lowe's, and other tree lots had pretty slim pickings.  Finally we found a Home Depot with a good selection of trees.  We found an 8 foot "promo" tree with the pretties shape, no holes, and for only $25- another win.  Well once we got home and I started fluffing the tree and putting lights on it, I pulled out a branch.  Weird.  As I kept putting lights, I kept pulling out branches revealing holes in the tree.  It didn't take us long to realize that the good price on that "promo" tree was due to the fact that the tree had plenty of holes that was filled with clippings from other trees.  We were laughing so hard at the whole thing.  By the time I had finished all the lights, the tree was full of holes, we had a pile of branches, and Lane and I were in tears from laughing so hard at the perfect tree we thought we had found.  Believe it or not, it was still a pretty tree.  Our own Charlie Brown tree.

The good thing to come from the Charlie Brown tree, was that I had plenty of clippings to decorate the rest of the house.  I tied a few sprigs onto serving dishes with baker's twine, put some into candle lanterns, and the rest into my dining room lanterns.  We didn't have a dining table at that time, but the dining room was decorated for Christmas nonetheless.

All the simple décor was just so pretty, but what was even more special was all the memories we got to make in our new home with each other.  We spent a great deal of time drinking hot chocolate (and lemonade) by the fireplace, made gingerbread houses, homemade cinnamon rolls, and other sweet treats together in the kitchen, and hosted multiple gatherings with sweet friends and family. I planned a Christmas book advent for my littles this year.  Jude and Aubrey Lane loved it and excitedly begged to open the book each night.  There was no going to bed until they had their Christmas book. 

Christmas Day was the sweetest.  My family was coming over that day so I was up early in the kitchen.  I heard AL stir, so I ran to the hall so I could see her reaction without her knowing it.  After she realized "Santa had come", she ran down the hall and exclaimed "I did not ask Santa for a teepee, but he just knowed I wanted one!"  She was just as grateful as last year.  Jude was more attentive to the festivities than ever.  He loved unwrapping presents and demanded that his toys be released from their packaging immediately.  He was so funny.  Then my family came in and I fed them dinner on a fold out table in our dining room (our table didn't arrive until the 27th) and everyone had a great time.

Looking back on the season, I'm quite happy with the simple décor- it was all about the memories this year, and there were plenty of sweet ones made.

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