Friday, January 01, 2021

Happy New Year! (And some of my simple Christmas decorating)


Wow, it's a brand new year!  Although I know that many people think of 2020 as a truly horrible year, I really can't look at it that way because every day of it was a day of life, a day that God allowed.  I will say that I am happy it has ended.  There were many difficult days in 2020, but God was there for every one of them, as He will be for every day that He allows in 2021.  I'm looking forward with hope and optimism to how He will work in the days ahead.  Like many of you, I'm praying hard for our country while moving forward prayerfully with plans, goals and dreams for the new year.  It will be interesting to watch God work.

Now, let's move on (or maybe it should be back) with a look at some of my Christmas decorating for 2020.  It was quite simple, but I tweaked a few things this year and had fun with it.

 See my vintage Santa mug at the center of the top shelf?  I found a box of six of them in the clean-out at my childhood home.  I believe them to be the Santa mugs that were used at the "kids' table" at the farmhouse Christmases of my childhood.  How to divide these?  My mother had five siblings and each had a family.  I solved the division problem by giving one mug to the oldest cousin in each family.  

Oh, and that tiny red truck and camper was a Dollar Tree find.  It was too cute to pass up.

I'll show you a few more tweaks as we go along.

Above is our tree, new for this year.  We've seldom added a star, but this one, found at an after-Christmas sale in some previous year, was perfect for the size of this tree.  We got the tree at Ocean State Job Lot, essentially free because we got a Crazy Deals gift card for the entire amount of the purchase.  This in turn funded our shopping spree there with the grandkids.  My hubby was very pleased with how this tree went together; it was well marked and quite easy to assemble.
This gorgeous Eloise Wilkin Christmas illustration had been framed and gifted to my mother, who so enjoyed her art.  This year it's on our living room wall.
Not sure if we even taped up incoming Christmas cards in our hallway last year.  This year, my now-retired hubby took charge of the project.

Below is something new that I added this year.  I've had this free "chalkboard" art for awhile and I think I framed it one year.  (I have a folder full of printed out artwork and just rotate it in and out of frames seasonally.)  

This year I thought it would be fun to hang some "brightly shining" stars above it.  I made these nearly two decades ago and had so much fun doing it.  Basically, you cut shapes like snowflakes, stars, or whatever you like out of watercolor paper.  It needs to be a good heavy paper.  Then you brush one side of each shape with a white glue and water mixture and sprinkle heavily with clear glitter.  When it's dry, you turn it over and do the other side the same way.  The tops of the ornaments, when completely dry, can be pierced with a needle and white or silver thread to knot for a hanger.  Here's the link if you want to try making some:  Winter White Glitter Ornaments

I am surprised but pleased that these ornaments have held up so well over time.  I keep them in a zip-top plastic bag inside of a box in the attic, where temperatures are variable and things tend to get damp because of the cold winters.  Yet these ornaments look just as nice now as the day I made them.

I made the cross-stitch sampler below several years ago.  I tucked the burlap snowflake (a gift from a previous Christmas) alongside it this year.
The antique soup tureen on the bottom shelf of the hutch is a family heirloom.  You can read more about it, and the rest of the set, here: Those black and white dishes, if you are interested.  I've added a tapestry placemat, a Christmas milk bottle and cookie recipe, a vintage cardinal salt shaker, a vintage jadeite mug, and a Christmas game.
Below, a closer look at the milk bottle corner.
Below, you can see my Christmas shadow box on the tip-top shelf of the hutch.  Usually I put a couple of Christmasy candles in holders on this shelf, too, but this year I left my jadeite teacups in place and stuck a silver bottle brush tree in each one.  Another 2020 tweak ...
Here you see two shelves in pretty much their entirety. 
Closer look at the middle shelf.  Love that vintage toy truck that I found in clearing out the old homestead!  The two caroling teddy bears have been around since my  kids' childhood.
Closer look at the tureen and tapestry placemat.
The Nativity scene is in a different place this year.  I usually put it on the cedar chest which we move to make room for the Christmas tree.  It's a more roomy surface, but I felt that placing it on this bookcase (which is new to us) put it more at eye level and thus made it more visible, as it indeed should be.
You see below the simple message "Hope in God"  which has been on our front-door chalkboard since March. At that time I had added sprigs of silk forsythia. In summer I kept the message the same and added some daisies and American flags; in fall, some red leaves and yellow mums in addition to the flags.  I've kept the same chalkboard message all of these months since it is really the most important message I can put there.

In early December I augmented the silk ivy with some pine and fir sprigs from around our yard.  I added some faux red berries and stuck in a couple of gold snowflakes, keeping some American flags in place as well.  It's a little quirky I guess, but a look I really like.

Yes -- it's been a simple decorating year, but also one in which I got a great deal of enjoyment out of our decorating.  I've loved seeing others enjoy it too.  Happy New Year, everyone!


  1. Loved seeing all your Christmas decor Mrs T. And that cross stitch is gorgeous. Love Prairie Schooler. I just put away our tree today and even moved some of my furniture around for the New Year.

  2. That is a cute, smart way to frame your cross-stitch. I like the snowflake tucked in, too.

    I am dismantling Christmas slowly...a bit here...a bit there. Soon all that will be left is the tree, which always stays up for a while longer in the New Year. I was especially late getting it decorated this year so I won't be ready to let it go.

    Are you getting this snow and freezing rain? I wish it were just snow. That's God's territory, not mine.

  3. Good words you began this post with Mrs. T. A good reminder to us all. And I love seeing your Christmas decor. What pretty dishes you have for decorating your hutch.

  4. I love your vintage and nostalgic decorations. Very homey. Your tree is beautiful too. I have not started removing our decorations yet. Probably will start later this week, but no rush. I am enjoying them. I hope you are staying warm and cozy up there in the North country. Take care and have a blessed New Year.


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