#AMonthofFaves This is How We Do Christmas

We love the holiday season and Christmas is special to both of us.


This Christmas it’s just going to be our small family of 4 – very different from last year when my 2 parents + brother and sister-in-law, niece and nephew were with us. It seems like it’s going to be really quiet – and truth be told, I’ve always been a bit envious of people with huge families and big gatherings.

Christmas Entry Front Door

But as much as I would love the house thundering with noise every minute of the day, I probably need some down-time. Last Christmas, I was going through chemo – the last treatment was actually in January this year. And then I had 25 work trips in 2019. I’m so blessed to be able to travel for work, but I’m so looking forward to a few weeks of down-time. My family has been so understanding – they are really the best, so although I had less time to get the house festive for Christmas, I still made the effort.

Christmas Dining Room Tablescape

We’ve been in our house for 3 years now, and it seems like we’re slowly making it our own. I wonder how long it takes for most people to get their homes to where they want it!

Christmas Dining and Family Room

Our family room becomes the most coveted spot in the Winter. It’s a cozy reading spot … and homework spot too! But luckily, with an oversized chair and a couch, there’s enough room for all of us.

Christmas Family Room

Family Room Christmas Tree

For the kitchen, I had grand visions of a small wreath on every kitchen cabinet door – but alas, with limited time, energy and not wanting to spend much $$ this Christmas, I just did a hot chocolate station. This is on the kitchen island and I think my family is drinking hot chocolate every night!

Christmas Kithcen Hot Chocolate Bar

I added some battery operated star-lights so they twinkle at night. Speaking of lights, all our decorations (except the battery operated lights in the garland and the little tree in the hot chocolate station), are on these timers from Home Depot. I have them set to come on at 4:30PM – it gets dark early here in the mid-West – and go off at 11:30PM at night … and then come back on at 5:30AM and go off at 7:30AM. Can you believe the timers cost less than $5.00 each!

There are other trees throughout the house, but this year, my son requested one be in his room – and of course I obliged. And to be honest, the room will never be cleaned up enough to take a full picture! He requested red and blue ornaments.

Teenage Boy Room Christmas Tree

Christmas Tree Teen Boy Room

And – since there’s a tree in one kid’s room, I put another in my older son’s room – although he will only be home for the holidays.

Teen Boy Christmas Room Tree

I always take the week of Christmas off work – I mean totally disconnected, and that’s when we do the majority of our Christmas movie watching together as a family. Polar Express is a must every year! We don’t have a lot of traditions, but that’s one of them. Along with baking cookies on Christmas Eve. What are some of your holiday traditions?

~ KIM ~

Last year we had just finished our basement so we experimented with putting our tree up downstairs. I really loved having the tree right there as we watched movies all month long. But, I missed having a tree upstairs by the kitchen/living room, which is where I spend most of my time during the day. So it’s back upstairs this year. Maybe next year we’ll add a smaller tree in the basement and have two, but I only have the energy to decorate one right now.

Several years ago my mom gave me all of her garland when she moved out of my childhood home. I really loved that garland and did put it up for a couple of Christmases. Sadly, though, it was well over 30 years old and just falling apart and beyond repair. This year I saw garland on sale at Michael’s and snagged 4 strands of it. I really love it and it was so much easier to wrangle while hanging it up! I also got this cute fabric garland at a local craft store and hung it across my mantle.

I picked up this Santa lantern from Walmart this year and it is just magical looking! It’s quickly becoming a new favorite. I bought a Christmas cactus this year as well and I’m trying really hard not to kill it. I put it in a new pot when I brought it home only to have all the blooms fall off. I found out that you aren’t supposed to repot it, or disturb the roots, while it’s blooming. Oops! Hopefully I can keep it alive long enough to see it bloom again next year.

I always have the best intentions to keep it simple when it comes to decorating for Christmas- mostly for my own sanity. But, it is fun to make everything feel cozy and festive! I am, however, one of those people who takes everything down the week after Christmas and loves getting back to a clean slate.

Are you a minimalist when it comes to decorating? Real tree or Fake tree? If you’re participating in #AMonthofFaves [The 2019 Edition] link up to your blog post (or Instagram picture) below.


// Comments //

  1. Natashajk

    Jan 01

    Given that we have two holidays to celebrate I try to be a bit minimalist when it comes to both. Almost all of our decorating is on the main floor with just the kids’ two small trees upstairs.

    And Tanya reminded me that we didn’t watch any Christmas movies this year. Ooops.

    I’d love to take our decorations down today but, thanks to the flu, one party got postponed until this Saturday. On Sunday though — EVERYTHING is coming down. I LOVE that fresh, clean look of January 🙂

  2. Tanya and Kim- love both of your photos! And Tanya- you def deserve some downtime!

  3. Akilah

    Dec 20

    Both of your homes are beautiful. I *love* the Santa lantern. It really is magical.