Tuesday, December 6, 2016

touches of christmas and a taste of winter weather

Hello! I'm finally getting around to showing you some of my Christmas decorating. I keep it simple because I'm the only one doing it, and frankly, as I get older, I just don't have the inclination or energy to go all-out with the holiday decorating. Truth be told, after all the decorating was done, I still thought it was too much. In the back of my mind was, "Why did I bother?" I guess I did it for myself, because the menfolk around here don't seem to care either way. 

I took this shot of the front porch last week when the weather was still mild. We had picked up a couple of branches of that gorgeous winterberry at an outdoor market. Nothing fancy - just stuck it in a metal planter with some pine branches (purchased at Home Depot) and called it a day. I didn't know how to preserve the winterberry, so I read online to use a few inches of anti-freeze in the planter. Of course, this isn't a good idea if you have dogs around, since they might try to drink from it. 

The wreath on the front door has now been replaced with a fresh boxwood wreath, which I got at Trader Joes. It's plain - it needs a pretty bow and some pine cones or something else on it, but I haven't gotten around to decorating it yet. Who knows, it may never get decorated. Oh well, it's pretty as-is and will last long past Christmas. Adds a nice winter touch to the front door. In the meantime, this faux wreath is now hanging on the side door. 

We got our first measurable snow storm on Sunday, dumping 5" of wet, heavy snow. The winterberry looked so pretty peeking out from the blanket of snow.

The first snow is always so pretty and peaceful, especially when it outlines the tree branches. Now two days later, most of the snow is melted already.

I smiled when I saw the purple coneflower. It looked like each one was wearing a little pom-pom. 

Back inside, here's what's going on in the living room. This is our official Christmas tree. We haven't put up a big tree ever since Phil passed away. This will be our 8th Christmas without him, which is so hard to believe. The only ornaments I hang on this tree are some of the ones from Phil and Tim's childhood. To this day, I still buy Tim a "son" ornament every year. Hopefully, someday when he has his own place and decorates his own tree, he'll appreciate this special collection of ornaments.

On the entryway table, I kept things simple with just a few woodland decorations.

I also added holiday touches on and around the ladder bookshelf.

A closer look at the shelves: 

A holiday sprig and stash of mini ornaments in the pottery...

A sparkly butterfly handmade by my dear blogger friend, Penny of

An angel under a cloche...

Couple of vintage-looking ornaments peeking out of more pottery...

A picture frame of photos from when Phil and Tim were little, a family ornament and a Christmas candle...

On the bottom shelf, a vintage-looking car ornament (Michaels) and a vase full of blue and copper ornaments.

 Later in the week, I'll show you the little Christmas touches in my kitchen.
See you then!


  1. The red does look so pretty contrasted against the white snow. I decorated and finally finished, but then I find myself taking and putting things away because it's in the way. In a small apartment, space is at a premium. Your little tree is about the size of mine. A table top tree, and it is certainly enough! Doubt I'll ever buy a big tree again.

  2. Looks lovely, Melanie! No snow here yet. I'm not complaining. Merry Christmas!

  3. I understand about having less energy for decorating at this stage of life. Each year I try to whittle down the d├ęcor, but I know there is still way too much.
    I think your decorating is just right. Pretty, festive, warm and welcoming. I love what you did with the ornaments and pottery. Such a pretty combination.

  4. Pretty inside and out, Mel! I like the small tree, I think that's perfect. I simply love lights!! When else can you have them without being labeled a lunatic?!! ;-D

    Moving slow this year and just picking and choosing from my stuff downstairs. I'm really believing what I hear and see about things getting lost in clutter. So I'm subtracting and adding and I'm slow, very slow.

    Bah Humbug. And it's sooooooooo cold!

    Jane x

  5. I loved seeing your decorations, Melanie. I really love your little tree. I think it's perfect. I'm not overly fond of lots of Christmas stuff everywhere myself, but I obviously still have young kids at home and it's the right thing to have some decorations. Someday, I'll probably go to a small tree. I went really light on my tree decor this year, just lights and the nicest of my vintage-style glass ornaments and a few of the better plastic or ceramic ones. We had so much really junky stuff that I'm finally sorting through and parting with. The kids like it but I think it looks like heck, frankly. I'll share my tree on my blog later this week, maybe. I hope you're having a good week so far.

  6. I think nice and simple is definitely best. The butterfly Penny made is very pretty. 8 years in some ways is a very short time, but I imagine for you, it also feels like forever. Sending hugs of comfort and blessings for a peaceful, happy holiday.

  7. It looks lovely! I do a little decorating at a time and so far the tree is up and decorated. I love how you added little bits to your pottery! Sweet!

  8. Your place looks lovely, Melanie, with just the right touch of Christmas. I've whittled my decorating down, too. In fact, I put a few things up, thinking I'll do the rest when the tree goes up, but I kind of like it the way it is right now. I'm debating about the tree. We'll see. I love the bucket of berries and greenery on your front porch.

  9. Your home does look lovely in Christmas and simple is just as festive. I love your window with the cards on it. We haven't put up a large ,real tree in years either. The Charmer is small and I have to move so much furniture around and I'm just not that interested in doing it anymore.

  10. It's nice to see your home lovingly decked out for Christmas. I just have a small tree also, well, I have a tinier one set up too, but the main one is small, decorated with my favorite ornaments. Since losing my dear husband 4 years ago this Friday, I don't feel like going all out like I used to either.

    Happy Christmas holidays Melanie ~ FlowerLady

  11. Your home looks lovely with all of the pretty touches here and there. Very pretty!

  12. Your home looks warm and cozy with your touches of Christmas all around. We downsized our tree a few years ago, and it may get even smaller in years to come. I was going to do more decorating after looking at all the grand holiday home tours, but then I thought about the putting away part. Nope.

    Your snow looks so pretty covering your trees and garden. It's been snowing nonstop for days and I love it! My hubby says it's because he's the one doing all the shoveling. :o

  13. Cozy and festive inside and look at that pretty snow ! We've yet to have any major snow here in southwestern PA but I'm not complaining! :)

  14. Super cute, Melanie! I love the little tree - it's perfect on the credenza!

  15. Melanie, I enjoyed seeing each touch of Christmas at your home as for the first time ever I am not decorating--everything is packed for our move after Christmas. Even reading about your wreath from Trader Joe's brought back memories of exciting trips there, hoping they would have their fresh wreaths in. I'll look forward to seeing what your kitchen is like for Christmas this year. I do know what you mean about the men in the family not seeming to care--I have a feeling they would miss it if you didn't.

    Best to you,

  16. I think your home looks lovely and festive. I buy ornaments for my boys every year and hope they take them with them when they get their own homes. I try to put up less every year but I still seem to have way to much Christmas stuff.

  17. I can totally understand why you would no longer put up a big tree. I don't either, but mine is for different reasons. The kids can never seem to visit at the holidays, so since no one sees the place, why decorate? We don't care ourselves. We see them up in Detroit instead. If they ever come down again, I'll put up a small tree. Otherwise, forget it. But the hardest part is constantly having to explain to everyone why I don't put one up. It's like I'm breaking some horrible law that no one else has ever dared to break! Sheesh people, it's just a tree. LOL


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