This time of year is truly magical. Lights adorning trees, ornaments handed down through generations, mailboxes overflowing with holiday wishes and pictures of family friends one year older, steaming mugs of tea (and perhaps a cookie or two), hugs from old and new friends, knitting needles furiously finishing off last-minute gifts… It’s all magic.
How do we celebrate the holidays around here? With an exceptionally curious toddler, we elevate, downsize and get crafty.
Orange pomanders. YUM. Take some fresh oranges and make designs in them with cloves. What do they smell like? Christmas. My mom and I used to make them after we went on vacation years ago to Williamsburg, where you see them everywhere. They last for weeks and continue to give off an amazing scent.
I always had a bowl of ornaments on the table, but since Callum came along, I’ve had to revise my plan… Take a domed cake stand, hold it upside down and fill with bulbs. Hold the base to the bottom and gently flip it over, encasing them inside. Plastic ornaments are ideal since they won’t break if you overfill a bit. Toddler-proof and a fantastic table centerpiece!
Gone (for now) are the days of a large tree in the living room. My son and dog cannot resist the temptation. Instead we got a small, real tabletop tree and strung it with lights. We get the scent of pine and the joy of an out-of-reach tree, just toddler-sized.
A wreath leaves pine needle debris everywhere and since this is the main door we come in and out of, a felted snowflake makes a great door decoration. No matter how many times I run into it with handfuls of grocery bags, a squirmy kid or the mailman bangs it shut, it stays perky and debris-free.
Super fun to make, I got a large, scalloped-edge paper punch, some fancy paper from the paper store and yarn from my stash. I took my tapestry needle and ran it through the paper and strung it up in our archway. They dance a bit in the breeze and the sparkly ones catch the light. Simple and quick!
I bought a very inexpensive box of star ornaments from Target, used some yarn from my stash to string them up and have an instant over-the-table garland. It distracts my son when he’s eating and brings cheer to our meals.
In our new place we have a yard. A YARD!!! That means lights strung everywhere and every time I catch a glance of them outside it makes me smile.
Happy holidays to you and yours.