Christmas Preparations

November 30th. One last day of November and then it's DECEMBER DECEMBER DECEMBER!

We used this past Sunday to start some preliminary holiday decorating, but of course there's still more to do. 

Sunday evening we pulled our tree down from the attic (artificial ... no shame) along with all of the ornaments. I made a cup of hot cocoa and poured a few sips of it into a paper cup and let it cool down for Camille. Her very first hot chocolate. We told her she had a very special task to do; put the first ornament on the tree. I gave her a homemade ornament from when she was in daycare -- she was just around 6/7 months. 

(I had some questions about her jammies. They are Hartstrings and we
got them secondhand. But I found some on Amazon if you're looking
for similar ones ... girls plaid jammies HERE and HERE 
and a cute pair for toddler boys HERE)

After that she went to bed, Ian and I poured a glass of red wine and finished up the tree. My tree is unabashedly FABULOUS. Like, colored lights, feathers everywhere, frou-frou fabulous. It's not a stale, white-lights, all silver ball ornaments tree, oh no no no.  Poor Ian. 

I came downstairs last night with some feather garland that I found and he said dryly "OH YEAH I was just thinking our tree needed more stuff on it" ... haha! He secretly loves it. I know it. 

OOOH! Garland question for you. Does anyone use fresh garland on their staircase? Does it shed like crazy? Or not too bad? Let me know.

Very pretty fresh garland. Not sure I'd add the tulips due to their limited longevity but those magnolia and eucalyptus leaves are ideal! Also love the stair railing!:

Lastly, someone posted this image on a moms Facebook group I'm in and I took a screenshot of it, because I want to do this with the girls! It's from the blog Coffee Cups and Crayons

Here's my challenge to you ... because I know that sometimes committing to a full calendar of tasks can be somewhat difficult. Pick FOUR days/acts that you want to do (even if they are small and easy). Write them down on a sticky note like this:

2 - Pick up litter
6 - Make a hug coupon for someone
12 - Call a faraway friend or relative to say hello
24 - Do a secret act of kindness for someone

Put that sticky somewhere you'll see it like at your coffeemaker or on your car dashboard. AND I'm asking you to write down four that you can commit to in the comments section. I think it will be interesting to see everyones' committments, and it will hold us all accountable! 


  1. I just put up fresh garland on my staircase (first time doing this)--it got everywhere when I was putting it up, but so far, no additional needles. Also, it was like $7 at Trader Joe's for 20'! Do it!

    1. Omg that sounds amazing!!! I need to get to Trader Joe's RIGHT NOW! Totally making a trip after naptime.

  2. You must share a picture of your fabulous tree!! LOVE the Advent Calendar! Our family is going to commit to:
    1) making cards for soldiers
    2) baking cookies for our neighbors
    3) feed the birds
    4) donate toys to a local family homeless shelter and also spend a morning volunteering in their children's room!
    Can't wait to see what everyone is going to do! :)

  3. Love the advent calendar!! And we are full on bright colored lights people too. We used to have the mini lights and then last year I found the big bulbs like we had growing up. Please post a pic!

  4. we use fake garland, because my husband is allergic to the real stuff! we found ours at menards last year for pretty cheap!

  5. the garland is SO cute! i need to find some that looks real. xo jillian - cornflake dreams

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  7. I love the acts of kindness idea!! We sponsored two kiddos through our church and bought gifts for them, a yearly tradition that I hope to pass on to our kids!

  8. That's so sweet! And that's my favorite kind of tree! We have an artificial, pre-lit tree woth all kinds of homemade ornaments. :))

  9. Yes, fresh garland is wonderful! Little bit of shedding later, but one of those simple, 'luxury Christmas made special' items... you know? Nothing a vacuum cleaner can't pick up.... and it adds a touch to a home. Worth it in my book! Love your posts!!

  10. Oh girl I'm dying to see the tree! We do 4 so we get a mix of themes as well! Ha! Love the kindness acts - excellent idea!


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