Sunday, November 29, 2009

Getting ready for Christmas

It's been months since I've posted anything. Life has been very busy, but perhaps I've also been lazy.

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving up in Bellingham. My mom did not fail to impress in her Martha Stewart meal. Now it's nearly December, and I've spent the weekend doing winter yard clean-up, and getting ready for Christmas. I'm feeling more festive than usual, perhaps because it's been a year filled with many challenges, trials and tribulations --- I'm definitely really ready for 2010, and the refreshment that a New Year should entail. I'm also very ready to celebrate this '09 holiday season with friends and family. Next weekend, we're hosting a party for friends--I think we might buy a keg! (to compliment the mulled wine and cranberry margaritas) -- and I am busy making our home feel like Christmas. We have old timey Christmas music on, and I'm trimming our tree (it's a good one this year) and I am struck by how much I love and appreciate... my mom. Christmastime at my mom's house has always been an OCCASION. She unfailingly rocks the garland, the festive tabletops arrangements, the VERY fancy tree, lots of gold ribbon, handmade wreaths, candles, spray painted gold pine cones, miniature Christmas lights --and at one point, a nutcracker collection.

I loved helping her decorate our Christmas tree when I was growing up. She always put on sappy Christmas music and my sister and I pulled out our favorite ornaments, retelling stories and anticipating what gifts might be put under the tree. We always had a near-perfect 6+ foot tree in our living room, decorated with my mom's beautiful selection of trimmings -- which of course, perfectly coordinated with the room. (She usually bought a small second tree that we could decorate with our silly Christmas-themed crap. It stayed in the upstairs hallway or playroom.)

I'm hoping to carry this tradition on with my kids, but in the meantime, I'm actually totally enjoying making a version of my mom's tree in our own home. As silly as it may sound, I'm totally inspired by her Christmas design aesthetic. I don't feel guilty that I mostly hide away the tacky red and green homeade ornaments from my past, replacing them with a selection of very sparkly gold, turquoise and bright pink ornaments (yes, they coordinate with our living room).

My mom is an extremely talented self-taught interior designer and I very much appreciate her ideas and influence. She by no means has ever told me how I should arrange my home, but I have of course gleaned from her vision, and I'm thankful for her impeccable taste, as well as her holiday spirit!