Holiday Home Tour
Christmas is my FAVORITE holiday. I love Christmas music, Christmas decorations, and food that I feel is necessary to make at Christmas. I love knowing that we have lots of Christmas parties to attend and that at Christmas we make it a priority to get together with people we do not see often enough. The spirit of Christmas is just untouched. I love that in December at church we get to sing Christmas songs and learn all about how JESUS IS THE REASON FOR THE SEASON!!
Last year during Christmas we were still consumed with building our new home. Our Christmas holidays were spent at our new house working. I didn’t even put up a tree last year. Not putting up a tree for me was SOOO hard since I love decorating for the holidays and Christmas in particular. So, this year, in our new home, Christmas decorations were a must.
Picking a Christmas Tree
For the past 4 years, we have used a real Christmas tree. A Frasier Fir to be exact. After using a real tree, I just do not think that I could go back to having an artificial tree as my main tree. I love the perfectly imperfect real trees and the wonderful smell they bring into my home. My favorite candles during Christmas are the Thymes Frasier Fir. The Balsam & Cedar from Yankee is pretty good as well for a cheaper option. I absolutely love the smell of a Christmas tree.
Anyway, we went on Black Friday to Lowes and picked out our Frasier Fir Christmas tree. We have 10 foot ceilings so we picked a tree from the 9-10ft section. While there, I noticed the cutest little mini tree off to the side. The worker informed me that this was what they cut out of the top of another tree and that I could have it for free. Yay for me!!! Once they set the tree for us, we loaded it into the back of the truck and headed home.
Once at home, we figured out this tree was HEAVY. I mean like, really heavy. Getting it into the house was quite comical. Then, once we had it inside we cut the ties and this huge tree appeared in front of us. When I say huge…I mean really big…like just shy of 10 feet tall and about 5 feet wide. Like many real trees, this tree was a little higher on one side than the other and as I mentioned above..it is perfectly imperfect.
Christmas Tree Lights
Christmas tree lights are my worst enemy. I mean…Christmas Lights are my least favorite thing about decorating. This year was no exception. I never like putting them on the tree even when everything goes smoothly. However, this year, nothing went smoothly and made things so much worse. We start off by realizing that I saved NONE of my Christmas lights during our move. While buying the tree I picked up two boxes only because I thought I had more. WRONG. So, right off the bat we had to stop what we were doing and go to town to find Christmas lights. Keep in mind I live in a small town with very options (especially at night) for buying things like….lights.
We first went to Walmart (a regular Walmart, not Super Center) and they were completely sold out of white lights. Next, we visited option #2 Fred’s. Guess what….sold out. Option #3 – Dollar General. Finally, our third stop had lights. So, we bought 15 boxes to ensure we would have plenty for this big ole tree. After an hour of hunting lights and finally getting back home, we start putting the lights together and adding them to the tree. After quite some time, we had 1500 lights on the tree and we turned it on and it was perfect….perfect for about 5 minutes. What happened at five minutes? Every light went off!!! So, we unplug and replug and nothing happens. We remove the bottom strand of lights and plug it in and nothing happens. After removing the bottom strand, we plug in what is left on the tree and wa…la….the tree comes on….for about 5 minutes and you guessed it…it goes right back off.
Christmas Tree Lights = FAIL
At this point, I have my husband calling an electrician who is also family to see what the problem is. The lights were not blowing a breaker, but instead the lights were just cutting off and the bottom strand was blowing. After a conversation about the lights….we were informed that apparently the Dollar General lights pull almost twice as much electricity as most lights. Our lights from Hobby Lobby are 24 watts for a 100 strand while the Dollar General brand are 40 watts. I mean who looks at this kind of stuff because we didn’t. We had never had a problem in the past.
Needless to say, LED lights were suggested to us and so here we go. We took off every single light from the tree. By this time, it was getting close to midnight and we had no other lights so we went to bed. I went to bed frustrated and ill because of all the light troubles. The first thing the next morning, we head to Lowes (40 miles away) and spend $150 on Christmas lights. After getting back home, we start the process over again. We ended up not having to use all of the LED stands because they were actually longer strands than the cheaper lights. Knowing that we were getting some of our money back on those expensive lights made me feel a little better. The box says the LED lights on 15 year lights….I hope that is right.
For the rest of that Saturday, I decorated the house. I am happy how everything turned out. I can now also laugh about our light troubles. The day of…not so much. We have agreed that we will always remember the first Christmas tree in our new home.
My Christmas Decorations
Each year the day after Christmas a cute store in Tupelo, MS – Midsouth Nursery puts their Christmas items 50%. I always go and take about $40 and buy new ornaments for the next year. Then, each year when I open up my Christmas stuff…I feel like I have new ornaments and decor.
All of my Christmas decorations are a collection of things over the past almost 9 years. My christmas tree toppers all came from a grocery store florist in Texas when we were there visiting friends. Most of my nicer ornaments come from local gift shops. I use cheaper solid color balls from Hobby Lobby as fillers. All of my wreaths are real frasier fir wreaths. The ribbon came from Amazon (trying to save money) and it has a blue stripe in it that I didn’t realize. I left it and thought oh well!!
Many years ago I chose to have a very traditional style tree that I could add to year after year. I cannot imagine having a different theme each year and having to buy ornaments…that would get expensive. So, I stick to mostly red and green for my main tree and my other small one…I have vintage gold and silver Santa’s. I found these at Kirkland’s several years back and fell in love.
Anyway, I hope you have enjoyed looking as much as I enjoyed doing!! Over the next several weeks I will start cooking some of my favorite holiday candies, cookies, cheeseballs, and more. I will post all recipes!!