For the first couple of weeks when the triplets came home from the NICU, I binge-watched Fixer Upper. I had heard the buzz about shiplap and all of the amazing things Chip and Joanna were able to do but I didn’t experience it until I had to be up every 3 hours to feed the babies.
The attention to detail, the amazing finds Joanna pulled out of her warehouse to add the perfect touch. I was amazed by her designs and ideas. Max is a builder and does a lot of the things Chip does. But it’s the little things that Joanna adds to the whole home that gives it that wow-factor.
So what does this have to do with a Christmas catalog?
I have seen some pretty amazing pictures out there this year of different Christmas decor. Like Fixer Upper quality. The coordinating colors and the place settings and the perfect trim. It’s beautiful! There are so many out there with great talent.
The day after Thanksgiving, we pulled out our Christmas decor. I pulled out my Rubbermaid tubs and the JC Penney box that Max’s suit came in a few years ago, that holds our ornaments.
Max and C worked at getting the tree set up. I pulled out the ruffled burlap garland strands I made a few years ago and wrapped it around the tree. I opened the box of ornaments and we started putting them on the tree.
Each one has some memory to go with it: the blue glass ornaments Max brought back from the Czech Republic. The Disney ornaments we buy each time we go. Our Hawaiian ornaments from two years ago when we went for Max’s work. The ones from family and the ones we buy as a family each year. C’s first ornament. Plastic clear ones I filled with fake red berries and the pearly snow.
After putting up each ornament, C runs back to the box to retrieve another one, filling the bottom third of the tree. I do my best to only move a few, which is difficult because I want to spread them out.
I go back to my boxes and start pulling out other decorations while the boys pull out our Disney Christmas train (we might have a Disney problem…). They spend a while putting together the track around the base of the tree and watching the train as it chugs along the track.
I pull out the Christmas village houses Max bought me each year and get them set up along the window edge. The three fake trees that go with it are bent at odd angles because C isn’t a fan of straight trees, apparently.
I pull out our Christmas stockings, boots. I know, no shock there. Max had one and then I made two more. I think about how it might be easier to just buy stockings for the babies because hauling out the sewing machine and actually finishing them before Christmas is a little daunting.
Our Nativity scenes go on a shelf, higher up for now so they won’t accidentally get broken as C swan dives off his slide onto the bean bag.
We have three different advents. Yep, three. That was one of my favorite traditions growing up and my mom had a bunch of different ones, which made it fair for each of kid. We have some countdown to Christmas blocks. There is a snowman countdown. And we have a felt Christmas tree with little bells sewn on it to hang little mini ornaments each day.
I have a small quilted table runner I made back in the days when I actually sewed. Like I said, sewing anything right now is a little daunting. On top of it is a little centerpiece with silver candles sticking out of it.
My mother-in-law went through her Christmas decor and found a bunch of those window clings. I have never seen C get so excited as he peeled off each piece and put them as high as he could reach. Snowflakes flank one corner and everything that didn’t fit on the windows in the living room somehow squeezed onto the windows in his room.
Does it sound like a crazy concoction of Christmas? It is. But even after looking at all of the perfectly decorated homes, I wouldn’t trade it.
Christmas is no longer my holiday, after all. It’s now for my kids. There’s no way they’ll remember if anything is perfect. They don’t care if the colors match or if that’s a nice shade of red.
But they will remember running to hang an ornament on the tree, wherever they want. Or an ornament on the advent, counting down to the actual day. They’ll remember the excitement of hanging things on the windows and playing with the Christmas train, complete with bell.
Someday Christmas will be different
Someday maybe I’ll have the energy to decorate a little differently but it will be a sad day, I assume. It means my kids will be gone, having taken their individual ornaments and their stockings, their excitement for the holiday now with their own family.
Someday I won’t have a secret stash of gifts waiting to be wrapped, my own excitement at the looks on their faces making me want to dance.
So the Christmas catalog can pass us by. Because the mismatched Christmas and the excitement of the little ones is worth more than my picture perfect house.
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