Welcome back to the monthly edition of Where Bloggers Live! I am lucky to have joined a terrific group of bloggers who give a peek into the places and spaces where they spend their time.
Today's topic is Favorite Winter Holiday Décor, and the holiday I'm going to feature is Christmas. Now I know some of you go all out decorating for the holidays, but my own attempts are (not surprisingly) much more modest. However, I do like putting up a Christmas tree. I don't do it every year; it's more like every 2-3 years because it is a production. Even using an artificial tree that has lights pre-installed, it takes me a long time to put all my ornaments on the tree (and somehow, it takes me twice as long to take the ornaments off and put them away!).
Join me on a short winter wonderland stroll to view some Christmas trees I've known and loved.
First, my mom's Christmas tree, since is the one I grew up with. Well, this particular artificial tree is newer, but many of those ornaments and the angel at the top have been around a really long time! I love what a hodge-podge of ornaments are on the tree, and of course most of them have a memory attached (which is the best part).
Then my mom's tree went on an extreme diet and morphed into this very skinny tree. Honestly, my mom would have been fine with not putting a tree up at all that year but I insisted on it. I did my best to get as many ornaments to fit on this smaller tree as possible, but eventually Mom just called it.
As for my Christmas tree...one somewhat odd feature is that it doesn't have a topper. I know a star or angel topper is the classic approach, but I just like leaving mine bare at the top for no particular reason. I also don't like to do any kind of tinsel, garland, etc. on my tree. To me, that's just filler that wastes space that could be devoted to more ornaments. I have a pretty high density of ornaments on this tree, but there's definitely room for me to grow my collection. (Of course the Marx Brothers in the background are part of my year-round décor.)
Over time, my tree has become more and more stuffed with ornaments, which is absolutely to my liking. I continue to make my own ornaments, and people continue to give me ornaments as gifts. (I have mostly stopped buying them for myself at least.) Sometimes when people know you collect something, the deluge of gifts in that category can become overwhelming (like my mother-in-law and the chicken figurines in her kitchen and the approximately 8 million things with raccoons on them), but I have not yet reached the Maximum Ornament Limit. Peak Ornament is still ahead of me.
Though I could dedicate an entire year's worth of blog posts to my many ornaments, I am going to focus on only three: the ones that are specific to my two pet rabbits that I keep in their memory.
First is a cross-stitch ornament I made for Kate aka Katy. This is actually the only stamped cross stitch I've ever done. I bought the printed fabric at a jumble sale by our house rabbit group in Austin, TX. The only change I made to it was adding Katy's name at the top. Let me just say, wow, stamped cross stitch is a lot easier than counted cross stitch! I couldn't believe how quickly I whipped this up.
The second one for Leopold aka Leo is from our veterinarian with Leo's footprints in it. This one is bittersweet because we got it after Leo had to be put to sleep.
The third one is a counted cross-stitch I made with Leo (left) and Katy (right) posed in front of a carrot-decorated tree. I'm 99% sure I got that pattern from a Christmas ornament cross stitch magazine (my husband bought me several of them back in the day). I did tweak the pattern so that the two rabbits had fur colors and patterns that matched our bunnies. Don't they look sweet captured in that moment before they tear the tree to the ground and absolutely destroy it?
Moving on to some less-conventional Christmas trees...
This magnificent snow-covered beauty is one of Nature's Christmas trees in North Carolina. I'm not a fan of the snow-flocked artificial trees, but there's no arguing with the majesty of a snow-covered living tree.
This tree outside my doctor's office in Minnesota is less snowy but even more impressively tall and full. I just remember it was freaking cold when I took this photo.
Another variant on the Christmas tree concept is taking an ordinary deciduous tree and covering it with lights. I love Christmas light displays, the bigger, brighter, and gaudier the better! On one of our last Christmases in Oklahoma, I pretty much forced my family to go to the Rhema Lights display in Tulsa. It's a 110-acre campus covered in millions of lights. All outdoors. Luckily it was only chilly, not freezing cold, when we visited. (Of course, everyone else might have disagreed with that assessment.)
Finally, one of the most whimsical Christmas tree sightings I've experienced: in the video game Fallout 4, if you visit Diamond City on December 25, the market area around Power Noodles is decorated with Christmas lights and a lit-up Christmas tree. (On October 31, it's decorated for Halloween.) It's good to know that people...and robots...continue to celebrate Christmas with decorated trees in the post-apocalyptic retro-future!
Thanks for joining me in sharing some of my Trees of Christmas Past.
Next month's topic is How I Stay Warm in Winter...and it's funny, I expect that because I run so hot, I'll have less actionable advice than others in the group despite living in (I think) the coldest climate!
In the meantime, visit these lovely bloggers as they share their favorite winter holiday décor:
Bettye at Fashion Schlub
Daenel at Living Outside the Stacks
Em at Dust and Doghair
Iris at Iris’ Original Ramblings
Jodie at Jodie’s Touch of Style
Leslie at Once Upon a Time & Happily Ever After
What is your favorite winter holiday décor? If you celebrate Christmas, do you like to put up a tree? Do you prefer a real or artificial tree? Does it seem to take even longer to put ornaments away than to put them on the tree for you too?
Blogs I link up with are listed here.