Like with Thanksgiving, our Christmas will be understated this year. Just us two, though we won't be doing nearly as much cooking as on turkey day. While Thanksgiving is all about the food, Christmas for me is about the festive decorations, thoughtful gifts, twinkling lights and familiar carols... The trick this year is trying to get that warm and fuzzy feeling of the season when we are far from home, our friends and family that we miss dearly, and living in a nice but too-small-for-all-our-stuff apartment that can't really fit (or store) much holiday decor.
Despite these potential Christmas kill-joys, I've been doing my best to make our St. Pete home feel merry and bright, by playing (and singing along to) my small collection of holiday tunes on repeat, drinking cranberry ginger shandies with dinner, mixing up mugs of mini-marshmallow-topped hot cocoa for a late-night sweet treat. We even rewarded ourselves on Sunday with a frittata and mimosa brunch (prepared by G!) for having wrapped nearly all our Christmas presents. We finally popped our holiday cards in the mail last Saturday and, while the hubs thought it was unnecessary (men), I spent some extra time making the envelopes look extra special with some washi tape.
Since fitting a tree in our apartment would have taken a bit of rearranging, and all our Christmas decor—ornaments and lights included—is trapped somewhere in our over-stuffed storage unit, we decided to get a mini potted tree instead. Two, in fact. I picked up a pack of tiny metallic ornaments in the dollar bin at Target, where I also convinced G that we needed a polar bear figurine, a bit of silver garland, and one trinket for the tree to commemorate our first married Christmas. I chose a small red stocking inscribed with the word "Love." Simple and sweet. Using our collection of candles, a scrap piece of wrapping paper and white lace doilies from my stationery stash, I crafted a holiday scene on the bar countertop overlooking our living room. (The holiday release from our favorite Temecula winery and a birdie ornament I brought home from our Victoria honeymoon also make an appearance.)
Small and humble, but cheery all the same. While I find myself missing the the big tree with its sparkling lights, and setting up my family's nativity set (which was always my favorite thing to do each Christmas), I still feel a special joy when our little scene is aglow at night. It might not be grand but it has lots of heart.
Here's a peek at our Christmas, so far...
How are you celebrating the holiday season?