I have a funny relationship with Christmas decorations.
Every year I dread the massive upheaval of getting out the ladder, climbing into the loft, heaving out the crates and embarking on the mammoth task. Actually Mr Bond does all that, and I supervise, but it’s still a shared upheaval!
I’m a scheduler, so the day was planned some time ago. We decided that because we’re away for Christmas, we’d decorate early to ensure maximum enjoyment of the twinkles. The day was due for the 3rd week of November. Really early, I know – but that was the plan.
However, extreme coughing and spluttering interrupted our plans and it was not to be – until today.
There is still coughing and spluttering, but slightly less extreme and with lots of help from Mr Bond we got the job done.
Today was a little bit tinged with sadness for us. It’s our first Christmas without Henry, our beloved miniature dachshund. Not that he was ever interested in decorating. As soon as the boxes came down he would find the nearest cosy place to bury himself and remain there until it was all over. We tried our best over the years, but it was not for him. He even had his own doggy stocking that we hung over his bed, but I’m not sure he ever noticed it. It’s out this year though, and will be every year to come.
We live in a quite small cottage so this year we’ve decided not to bother with a tree and just to decorate our mantelpiece and dresser. We won’t be home on Christmas day and our presents will all travel away with us so there didn’t seem much point.
Now I must tell you I’m very particular about my decorations so don’t be bringing tinsel anywhere near this house. You can have as much as you like in every colour in your house – just don’t bring it here! I blame my mother for the slight obsession I have with colour matching. But I’m sticking with it, and if your room is duck, ivory and chocolate brown – then your decorations should be too! Well, in our home anyway!
I love to go to town on the mantelpiece. There’s tealights, big wax candles, fancy vintage baubles and twinkly lights. Right in the centre is a hand carved wooden nativity scene that my parents brought home from one of their trips to the Black Forest. If you position the tealights just right, the light shines though the star onto the manger and reminds us throughout the season of what we are really celebrating – the coming of Christ.
I love the tradition of opening the decorations box. Each piece with its own story. There’s only a few pieces left from our first married Christmas now, but every year we have added a little something to our collection. This tree-light was a table gift from daughter Jo & James on their wedding day 2 years ago.
One trick I started doing a few years back is using large glass vases and filling them with beads, baubles and lights. When you don’t have room for a big tree, you need somewhere to display your pretty baubles and a vase really shows them off. This year I’ve put 2 hurricane lamps together and added this year’s gold vintage baubles from Petticoat Lane – my absolute favourite place for gorgeous things.
Some of my favourite pieces are the simple ones. This peg Mary, Joseph and Jesus is the simplest, cutest idea – just clothes pegs tied together. It was given me by a lovely lady at a Christmas Fayre a few years back and I really treasure it.
Mr Snowman joined us last year from the Danish Christmas Evening at Janet Bell Home in Beaumaris. He’s one of my favourites too.
So the boxes are all back in the loft, the house is looking festive and bright and we’ve got 2 whole weeks to enjoy it.
Have you decorated yet? What are your traditions? We’d love to hear from you.