This last weekend was quite an adventure. My brother presented his doctoral dissertation defense, we celebrated, ate tons of food, and drove home in a snow storm. Again, I’ve been indulging in my daily gift, but too busy to share. Today ends all that. I’ll be posting what gifts I’ve received later today, as well as photos of my freshly decorated house now.
After a drive that was twice the estimated time because of snow, we got home to a cold (55!) house, which was trashed because of the rush to leave. I immediately got to work decorating for the holidays. I cranked up the heat, turned on the electric blanket, and pulled up the decor from the basement. Nothing warms up the house like twinkling lights and garland. Of course my pup(Edgar) prefers the electric blanket after playing in the snow.
There’s something so lovely about setting up the Christmas tree. It’s slow and monotonous and sparkly. You put on a Christmas movie, drink something warm, and take your time. It’s like a break from reality. It’s also incredibly nostalgic. As a kid it was an event mostly spent with my mom. My dad and brother weren’t really interested, but my mom and I would spend hours carefully arranging the tiny memories. Each ornament has a story; many are old, many handmade, many marking an event for the family. My birth, the vacation to Pigeon Forge Tennessee, an art project from first grade made with sticky fingers. It’s wonderful. My ornaments are a history of gifts. Some chosen with my mom, many from Christian who gave me an amazing collection of vintage blown glass bulbs and icicles. Decorating with these makes me miss home and reminds me of those who love me.
Since moving away from home(from Florida to Philly), holidays have changed considerably. There is no big family gathering, no traditionreally. Even merging traditions with my boyfriend can be difficult. His family has pork roast for Christmas, mine has deep fried turkey. He doesn’t decorate, I adore it. We’re working on building our own traditions, making our ornaments mean something. This year we’re taking our first vacation in 5 years. We’ll be spending over a week in Seattle, celebrating both Christmas and New Years there. I hope to snag a ornament to commemorate our trip. I can’t wait. In the mean time we’ll have a dinner party and I’ll keep cracking open advent gifts.
I try to change up the decorations a little each year. Living in the north, there are more often mantles and stair rails to decorate. (You’re probably noticing the weird ornate heat vent where the fireplace should be. I have no idea what this is about, but I’ve seen it numerous times in Philly.) I went with red garland and pops of gold. Last year during a unemployment spell, I went to town making stockings for Jose, Edgar, and myself. I love having something unique and personal to decorate the house with. I think I might need to make a new one for the pup, as not much will fit in his stocking. Most of my Christmas decor is traditional with a bit of silliness. I also love this vintage brass reindeer sculpture I got from Etsy, he adds a little glamour to the classic garland. Later tonight I’ll be posting what I’ve received from Christian over the last few days. Keep watching!