Growing up, my family would always put up the Christmas tree the day after Thanksgiving. It was always the beginning of Christmas for me. Today, Alberto and I still continue this tradition, and each year it keeps expanding. We have three trees (yes, three): living room, family room and dining room. However, they’re all artificial. We love real trees. But when we used to get them, they always got messy after a few days, and, quite frankly, they became a fire hazard by the time Christmas arrived.
The first tree is in the living room. We like to add different types of ornaments, but we find that if you choose an overall color scheme, it brings the tree together.
For example, we have Santas, Nutcrackers and other miscellaneous ornaments that we’ve picked up over the years (including bright orange disco balls). In this tree we used gold ribbon and simple gold balls (big and small) to fill in between all of the other ornaments. It goes with the decor in that room and looks very nice. I love old Santa Clauses, and my mother has been adding to my collection over the years. We usually show them off on the mantel of the fireplace.
Our second year in this house, we wanted to add a tree to the family room as that’s where we spend most of our time. Because that room has more of a hunting theme (complete with mounted deer antlers and duck decoys!), we wanted a rustic look for the tree that also represented us and our families.
To highlight our families, we hung picture frames all over the tree with photos of every member of our families. We also collect ornaments when we travel, so we added them to the tree. But we soon realized that we didn’t have enough ornaments to cover the tree. We had to come up with something else to fill the space.
Then we thought…what’s rustic (and free)? Pine cones! One Saturday afternoon, we went to the park, and collected two huge bags of pine cones. (Yes, our neighbors do think we’re nuts!) We took the pine cones home, painted them gold, tied them with twine and hung them all over the tree. Those homemade ornaments and the rust colored ribbon gave us exactly the look that we wanted for the tree.
Last year, Alberto decided that he wanted a tree in the dining room, all white with sparkles (gay, much?). Finding decorations and ribbon was the easy part. Finding a tree topper was not, until…
We wanted a tree topper that was different, and we saw a white deer with silver glitter at our favorite craft store, Michael’s. Unfortunately, it was just a deer that one would use in a display, so we didn’t know how we could keep it on top of the tree. Then I saw a silver jeweled votive holder, and voilà! I made my own tree topper! All I had to do is hot glue the votive holder upside down to the deers belly, and a unique tree topper was born! It put just the right finishing touch to the tree.
I love Christmas, and it provides a GREAT outlet for our creativity. Have fun decorating for the holidays!