Sunday, October 23, 2011

Ho-Ho-Ho How Many Days Till Christmas?

Isn’t this one of the most asked questions this time of year? And don’t you just hate it when someone brings it to your attention? I have often wondered why that is. Christmas is my all time favorite time of the year, so why would I get upset when someone tells me how many days it is till Christmas? I think most of us feel that way because we never feel we are quite ready for Christmas each year. This year, I would love for it to be different, so lets think for a minute about some ideas for decorating our homes that we can start doing right after Thanksgiving!!!

Speaking of Thanksgiving, what do Christmas and Thanksgiving have in common more than any other time of the year? Hmmm…..What about a huge Dinner Table? Both of these Holidays scream “BIG, Festive Dinner Table”. So let’s first take a look at how we can change up our Table for the Holidays. One thing I have noticed about my dinner table, is there is never enough room for all that food. And usually I have to remove the beautiful centerpiece to make room for more food. Heres a little trick for a Center Piece that can stay on the table when the food comes. Take two bowls, one a little smaller than the other. Place the larger bowl upside down on the table with the smaller one right side up. Put a little garland around the larger bowl and maybe even a few of your favorite Christmas Balls. Now until that wonderful dinner, keep the smaller bowl on top filled with Christmas Potpouri, Christmas Balls, Pinecones - your favorite Christmas Treasure. Now when dinner comes, just remove the smaller bowl and replace it with a bowl full of Mashed Potatoes or place your Turkey platter on top. Not only does it look great but it does not take away room from the table. It also gives your table more dimension. Be sure and use a beautiful table cloth, Maybe this is the year to buy some of those inexpensive “charger” plates to go under your dinner plate. It makes the table look so special. Wouldn’t it be fun to take some of the glass or plastic (if you have little ones) Christmas balls and use them as Place Cards. Just attach the name at the top with a little hot glue or right in the circular ornament holder. You can lay them on the plate on top of the beautiful decorative napkin. Something that would add some family fun to this Celebration Table would be instead of putting everyones name as their place card - how about getting a hold of a baby picture of everyone who will be present. You don’t have to tell them what it is for, then when it is time to take their place at the dinner table - they just look for their “special” seat. The others will enjoy looking at everyones picture and will begin talking about special times gone by. If it is just your family joining you for dinner, then finding photos Christmas Days from the past - would be a fun twist and get everyone remembering your special times together. If you are like my family often the kids sit at a different table. Have fun with those table decorations as well. I recently saw this fun idea. But an inexpensive table cloth and put some red and green permanent markers on their table. Ask each child to sign their name or write something on the table cloth. Then next year when you bring it out - they will have fun talking about what they wrote last year.

Now, here is an idea for some of those wonderful Lanterns that are so popular today. They come in all sizes and shapes. I have several sitting in different places around my home. Decorate them up and add a special touch to them this Holiday Season with Bows and garland. Think about something a little different you can put inside. Be sure and use them for Candles(gotta have that special glow at Christmas), but how fun it is to fill them with Christmas Balls, or your favorite Christmas figurine.

I also think that the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas is the perfect time to take a little stroll outside your home or through the park or woods. There you will find all kinds of wonderful things that you can incorporate in your Holiday decorations. Pinecones, dried flowers, bittersweet, magnolia leaves, holly. Take along a big basket and look for these treasures. If you have little ones in your family, be sure to take them along with you. You will be creating some wonderful memories. They will love being outside and looking for these things. Now when you get back home, you can use some gold or silver spray paint on some of the things you have found. Use them as you decorate your table, mantle, tree or a wreath on your door.

Speaking of a tree - and if you are like me - you have more than one tree decorated at Chirstmas time. You probably also will be having more than one time that you will be inviting guests into your home for an evening meal, a cookie swap, or maybe just a lunch with the other ladies. What if you ask each guest during the Holidays to bring along one of their personal tree decorations that they will share with you. Tell them you will be sure and get it back to them after the Holidays are over. Now have a smaller tree on a table or entry way and as your guests arrive place their favorite ornament on the tree. By the time Christmas arrives you have a beautifully decorated tree and lots of wonderful conversation about the ornaments and whose they are. Now remember - you will be giving them back to the person who brought them after the Holidays are over. What a great way it would be to also attach a small hand written thank you note for allowing you to borrow it for a few weeks.

Christmas is always such a great time to be sharing memories and starting traditions with your family. It is never too late to start a new tradition!!!

Ho-Ho-Ho Hope you have a wonderful Ho-liday with your family this Christmas season. Always Remember That Jesus is the Reason for the Season!!!

Pat Dempsey, Sr. Executive Director
AtHome America
Decorate your home for the Holiays Free this year by hosting a book or in home show.
Contact me for the details.